Welcome to Marauder Moments - a chronicle of the Mortimer Street Marauders; the games we play, the rules we use, the figures we play with and the scenery they fight over. Hope you enjoy these pages and maybe call back to catch up with our escapades.

Friday, 7 October 2011

Ground Hog Day

Last weeks game was so fun and so quick we decided to go back and play it again. This allowed me to reshoot some of the action and allowed us to try a few different tactics. The only changes were as follows; Chris joined as my Number 2 on the French side; we swapped table edges - so the Brits defended. Lastly Rich put on a small walled field when no one was looking. This served no purpose other than to be infantile and to block the advance of his reserves - ha!

If you haven't read the last post or have forgotten it here is the point of the game. A small British force (actually KGL) is garrisoning both the Church at San Christobel high on the ridge and the farm and groves nearby in the valley. As the French approach skirmishers rush into the olive and orange groves and the garrisons steel themselves for the onslaught. Happily there are reinforcements on the way in the form of KGL Light Dragoons and lots of infantry. Unbeknownst to the French there are also two allied battalions and a small RHA battery approaching the other side of the ridge - about two moves away in fact! So the French must clear the blocking forces and hold off the reserves, the allies must resist - simple.

Looking down from the ridge in the allied rear towards the farm. French cavalry are covering the extreme  left of the French line which is hidden from view by the buildings.
Looking from the ridge in the rear of the allied line toward the Church and the rocky outcrop on the ridge which forms the other end of the battlefield. This is turn two and the KGL have got to the high ground first with two battalions and a small RHA battery. The French and their allies deploy from march columns in the distance. Woods and orange groves separate the two ends of the battlefield with open plains to each side.   

Redcoats prepare to defend the barrels of booze with their very lives.
Victrix toys from Rich's collection - painted by Barry Hill. 
Rich's allies swept forward and started to climb the San Christobel ridge in the first few turns while the French in the same sector deployed from march into battle formations and got the guns set up to soften up the defenders. At the other end of the field three French columns preceeded by clouds of voltigeurs plodded towards the farm with cavalry covering the open ground on their flank. Early exchanges of fire were predictably unproductive except to make some noise and smoke. Having said that Chris showed us how skirmishers work by getting a couple of kills straight away - mine did nothing all day despite firing every single turn from turn two - pah!

Two battalions of Legere with Swiss support head for the allies in the farm. Brigade generals point out some slacker! Perry plastics with GMB flags, painted by Barry Hill, based by me, need finishing by me! 
KGL redcoats marching through broken ground at the foot slopes of the ridge before heading on up to the narrow plateau. The base of the Church can be seen top left.
Victrix toys by Barry Hill, TSS hills, PMC  building, PFW broken ground, SNFU by Rich.
View of the attack on the farm from the defenders point of view. Yes I'm still using Prussian light cavalry until the French ones are ready. More interesting is the blackboard showing vital club information - either it's the seating plan for the Christmas meal, or one of Tony's crazed scenarios. lastly it could be a new strain of DNA Rich has cooked up in the lab, possibly his plans to vaccinate against B.O. and farting among competition players on Sunday mornings!
Soap and corks anyone?   Perry foot, Calpe Cav by Prof Pender.

Soon the KGL reinforcements arrived on the rear ridge  - namely more KGL battalions including rifle armed lights plus 24 Light Dragoons. These were all heading for the farm with the cavalry placed to have a go at mine - puny fools! This show of force obviously meant Rich felt perfectly safe over by the church as Chris was climbing up the steep slope very slowly with his sharp shooting skirmishers already "up top" taking pot shots at anyone who popped out of the church! Luckily Rich's gunners couldn't hit jack so Chris remained fairly unmolested. The same could not be said down on the farm. My Columns finally launched a charge only to be ripped apart by closing volleys. The elite Legere withered the storm and made it in but the Swiss turned tail in full retreat. The resulting melee went my way - but only just. The KGL were pushed back only  rally on the spot. The winning Legere milled about trying to reform after the melee so were unable to occupy the position, aaaaaaaaaaarrrrgh!!!

Saxon Horse Battery bombards the Redcoats holding the Church.
Perry minis painted by Prof Pender, based by me.
Wurtemburg infantry line out to take on the beastly KGL on the ridge. Gratuitous German on German action!
 Falcon Figures, painted by prior owner Barry Hill, GMB flags, based by me.

Another unexpectedly excellent shot like last week. Brigadier oversees deployment of the allied counter attack through the corn fields towards the farm. Toys from Rich's collection.

Subsequent turns saw the French fail to actually get into the farm and pressure mount on them from the tide of enemies converging on the farm. This meant their attack turned into a holding action. Luckily the Swiss were rallied and frog-marched back to help out - no pun intended!

Retreating Swiss are rallied by their Brigade general. Note the wrong command stand has crept into this unit.
  By now Chris had two battalions up on the plateau and was getting ready to storm the church whilst keeping the enemy's supporting units busy with skirmish and canon fire plus the menacing Wurtemburg line! However his first assault party were repulsed, only just, but it was enough. The second battalion, Bavarian,  found itself in a fracas with a KGL column and came out worst. This rather spelt the end for what looked like a well staged attack by Chris. I think he blames me for this!

The allied defenders of the ridge at San Christobel. Two battalions of Kings German Legion plus a Royal Horse Artillery battery. Front Rank guns and crew, Victrix redcoats? All by Barry Hill, WIP basing by Rich.

Back at the farm the Legere had formed line in the cover of the farmyard and awaited the counter assault by the Light Infantry who seemed content the trade shots for a while. This killed time and a few Frenchmen while the Light Dragoons sorted out a charge on the Death Wish Hussars.

Redcoats massing for the counter attack - Victrix again, Barry Hill brush work, nearly based...

KGL Light Dragoons wind themselves up for a charge.
Front Rank painted by Barry Hill.

As the game reached it's climax the Dragoons clashed with the Hussars on the extreme French left/allied right. The Hussars threw a double 1 for melee and were routed with massive casualties. The Dragoons maintained perfect discipline and charged the exposed flank of the Legere who attempted to retreat. There was no escape from the rampant Dragoons - the Legere were caught in the flank while retreating! Rich threw double six for melee which in this case terminated the Legere and French chances of taking the farm. We called it a big win for Rich. The picture below shows the final position despite my shaking hands!

Note fleeing Hussars at bottom left!

  Another great game with lots of drama ending with a ball crunching cavalry charge to roll up the flank! You can't ask for more than that in a wargame can you?

Splendid allied cavalry commander. What ever happened to tiger skin saddles?
Perry mini - unsure of the painter.

Less splendid Brigadier blowing his nose.  Bless you Sir!

Brigadier and staff - no nose blowing here thankfully.
My beloved Snapdragon lump! The best rocky out crops ever made, ever, ever, ever. 
Last words are to thanks Chris and Rich for an easy going and enjoyable game again and Barry Hilton for a good scenario. Tony returns next week and we play a scenario of Rich's devising, some kind of rearguard action involving Russians and my hapless Prussians v lots of French cavalry. Looking forward to it already.

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