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.

Monday, 9 March 2015

Clausel's counter attack at Salamanca - the conclusion...

I missed this closing action - possibly just as well. My wife and I took a few days to enjoy the flesh-pots of Cardiff for our wedding anniversary - which long time followers know is sacred and not to be gamed upon. Not Paris or Venice granted but a great time was had rediscovering ourselves "sans enfant"! We had found some excellent restaurants to visit which didn't disappoint especially the one with the wine flight which accompanied the seven courses. Added to the port, cognac, gin and scotch we crawled out giggling!    

Back to the tabletop action!

So the boys took on Rich who was left to prop up a failing situation for the Allies. Tony kindly took some pictures which turned out OK considering he used a camera not a phone - rather quaint in this age! He even scratched some words onto a wax tablet for me to translate for you.

French brigade poised to charge and roll-up the Allied centre and left.
The Scots/Portuguese battalion turns to face the threat to its rear. 
The French have turned on the Allied right and are preparing to roll it up. The Allied centre and left are pinned to the front and even the French dragoons are getting ready to play.

The weather is intensely hot and strangely still; there's no breeze to disperse the smoke from the firefight which is still raging on the plain between the Greater and Lesser Arapiles.

RHA banging out some canister in a vain effort to hold the line.
This actually looks like a hot day.

Clausel sends in the dragoons - their time has come.
Front Rank and Perry Generals painted by Tony Laughton,
Perry plastic dragoons painted by Barry Hill for Rich.

Good shot across the French rear showing Wurtemberg and Bavarian lines delivering volleys against the Portuguese.

French lights brave the storm of canister to shoot down the RHA gunners.
Naturally the deluded monsieur on the left will be entirely safe from Mr Shrapnel's finest behind his barrel!   

Good overview of the action.
French dragoons closing in for a charge while their fellow countrymen pour around the left.

The plight of the Allied right.
Eccentric English general in top hat and frock coat brandishes a brolly at the KGL square while blaming two Scots for the ensuing collapse on his flank. Every British battalion here has fled or been wiped out. French flankers close in for the kill.
Players are not allowed to leave scraps of paper on the table when I'm around - cheeky scamps!

Stubb's command is also about to be rolled up it seems.
French dragoons finally make their presence felt.

These Scots/Portuguese are either nicking off for pastures new or turning to hold the rear. 

Same scene different angle.
Must base the Portuguese skirmishers properly.

The firefight in the centre and Allied left intensifies as more troops are fed in by both sides.
Here KGL lights engage French voltigeurs.
The fuzzy effect is the heat-wave not poor focus. 

The Allied advantage in depth is nullified as the line is severely threatened to the flank. 
It was at this juncture that Hulse's British brigade was due to go over to the attack from behind Stubbs. Inserting this fresh brigade into the line against the tiring French right would/could have swung things in the Allies favour or at least bought some valuable time. Tactical genius at work, really excellent, medals all round, excellent, really.

Hulse rolled for his change of orders to reach his battalions...

"Curses be upon you Hulse! You useless thrice infested wretch!"

Not only did his orders fail, his horse bolted at the volley fire and in the dense smoke he blundered into French lines and was captured. This left his command on pointless orders and leaderless. Typical bollocky result at such a vital moment.

The General De Brigade rules throw up these events sometimes, usually deeply frustrating BUT they go down in the club's folklore and get trotted out to mock each other when drunk and insensible. It's these events which help  make these games memorable. I am still not over the "death of Delzon" episode at Borodino in 2012, I really can't move on.        

That's why we play I guess, the agony and the ecstasy.

The top end of Stubb's Division is hit by flanking columns and frontally by dragoons after volley fire softened them up.
It's curtains for the Allies who must withdraw from a very sticky situation.
Thanks a lot Hulse.

Officer of the "tight buns" horse battery points out the errors in Rich's plan for the allies to a young bombardier.
The list is long and comprehensive, he will learn a lot from this disaster. 

The Best of British!
Redcoats, Wellington and warm weak beer - we're not at all bitter!  
So that's where they wrapped it up. Clausel's counter attack goes down in history as the game changer at Salamanca! He is promoted to Marshall of France upon his return to France.

Hulse is offered to His Majesty's Government in a prisoner exchange scheme.
The Royal Mail mislay the letter and he remains in captivity.  

As usual I hope you enjoyed this punch up in the sunshine and feel happy to comment and follow if you don't already do so.

Best wishes



  1. Great looking game with lovely figures. Congrats on the anniversary too.

  2. Great pictures, very impressive...and a fantastic last one! Cheers...

    1. Happy to hear from you as usual Phil.
      Be good, JJ

  3. Hi Jeremy,

    Great figures and scenario. Like the skirmish exagonal base :)
    Do you play napoleonic with 28mm using General de Brigade rules ? Size of your battalions ?


    1. Hi Skordly.
      Yep it's all 28mm with our General de Brigade games.
      This scenario had some smaller battalions, usually French etc are 36 strong, Russo/Prussians 32 strong, Austrian line 48s, LDW & Grenadiers 32. Cavalry 24 to 36 depending. Glad you like, have fun, jeremy

  4. Great stuff Jeremy, I love it when command and control falls apart, just when you don't need it.

    1. So true! How is it handled in Carnage & Glory?
      Cheers for commenting,

    2. Oh we've had messengers go astray, commanders not understand their new orders. The best one was when the French were desperately trying to evacuate Oporto, the brigade general whose troops were occupying the main road out of town decided to put his brigade on hold and caused a desperate situation to get a lot worse. C&G just pops a message up on the screen at the end of a turn, and it's fun to hear the curses from the side affected. Cest la guerre!

    3. Sounds similar, especially the cursing and head in hands moments etc etc.

  5. Superb stuff again Jeremy, quite an achievement to beat the Brits in Spain.
    Looking forward to your next outing, wherever that may be.

    1. Robert, next up is a series of linked games based on the 100 Days Campaign of Rich's devious devising! I have a few new toys to post soon and am still struggling with the giant Eggmuhl report. Keep an eye on us.

    2. Looking forward to Eggmuhl, am just putting together my own Austrian army for the LoA, stands at 22 infantry battalions & 1 hussar regt at the moment, but like yourselves our group is also being diverted by the Waterloo Factor.

  6. Very entertaining as usual Jeremy. Lovely collection of figures and terrain mate.


  7. Congratulations on the anniversary.

    Smashing looking game.

    T'is a shame that the Allies could not win without your superior leadership, else you made your excuses at just the right time.

  8. Excellent game - thanks for posting!

  9. BTW do you Marauders fancy having a GdB game with your fellow hapless west country wargamers over in SAD? We have lots of 28mm Napoleonic armies and like having big games of GdB too!