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, 19 October 2015

Encounter at Bachwald Schloss 1813 - part 1

There hasn't been a big battle report for ages on this blog, you are owed one! We have been busy playing three big linked games in September which Tony promises he will write up. We spent the first six months of 2015 playing the Hundred Days campaign which I may write up if Rich doesn't.

This was also to be French Tony's first big game with the Mortimer St Marauders so I wanted it to be extra, extra special. The scenario has at its core a very old fashioned premise for any wargame, one we have all done and is almost child like in its simplicity, it goes like this;-

"Lets get all the toys out and play a massive battle! Hurrah!"  

This was well received but soon turned out to be a bit silly so I moderated my own ambition and settled on a battle between all of our French and all of our Prussians and Russians, still a mighty encounter. My sensibilities wouldn't have been able to take Portuguese and British slugging it out alongside Russians, we also gave the Austrians a rest. There are more details below.

Here is the battlefield and initial deployment.

This is the nameless village on the eastern plateau.   

Looking north west towards the French deployment zone where French Tony writes orders
The distant forested hillside hides the ruins of Bachwald Schloss,  the only noteworthy feature in the area and therefore gives its name to the battle.

This is looking south west over the allied deployment zone.

Looking east across the allied deployment zone.

Cossacks scout ahead of the main body.
In the foreground we see Russian Opelchenie sent ahead to clear obstacles to the line of march. These are flanked by Mecklenburg von Strelitz Prussian light cavalry brigade.     

The French deployment zone 

Looking south east towards the allied lines over the Cossacks. 

The French turn up to intercept Blucher's march.
Looking north east as the ground rises.
There must be loads trailing or flank marching on both sides as the forces look skinny compared to what I have in those red tool boxes...

Bavarian brigade advancing behind a skirmish screen. 

The  Nassau brigades supports these conscripts who are bolstered also by presence of the Corsican lights.    

Vanilla French brigade with heavy metal support from both Saxon & Polish cuirassiers.  

The Saxon infantry with Westphalian & French Cuirassiers behind.
There is a brigade of camera shy Poles out there too some where!   
I gave the two Tonys a list of all the toys for their respective armies, Tony was to play Blucher, French Tony to play Napoleon. They each had to formulate an army structure of brigades, divisions, corps etc and an order of march. Upon seeing the table each then had to deploy their formations as either advance guard, main body, second line or trailing. Flanking & trailing forces were noted off table with a proposed point and turn of arrival. Lastly I rolled some dice for each brigade to see if they did indeed deploy where meant to and to see if their orders were as intended, every single one turned up as planned and in the right place - amazing!

Maybe I'll post the two armies orbats as the game unfolds so as the players don't get wind of what the others might still be hiding. Chris is with French Tony for this one, I am Yorck beside Blucher with the Army of Silesia.        

A nice shot of this nameless settlement as the occupiers vacate.
These are the Perry plastic cottages and fencing.
This battlefield also sports the new plastic Perry church & barn if you look carefully.  
That's the preamble over with. We played about 5 turns which was mostly movement and some inconclusive light cavalry action in the centre and Allied right. Then the Old Guard and Middle Guard turned up somewhat bafflingly! This alarmed the allies because usually these fellas turn up last, which means the French centre is very thin! This begs the question "Where the hell is the rest of the French army?" Are we facing the intriguing possibility of one or two massive flank attacks or are they just trailing? This is already a gripping game so call back as it develops. We could be facing a very quick game or a behemoth...        

Saturday, 3 October 2015

Corsican Tirailleurs or Tirailleurs de Corse!

This is another one of those "must have" regiments in my opinion. They and their sister regiment, the Chasseurs de Po, were considered "crack" light troops distinguishing themselves at Austerlitz and in 1809 too. Apparently the two were merged at a later date after heavy casualties. As the name suggests they were raised from Corsicans so were held in special regard by a certain tyrant from the same island.

The Tirailleurs de Corse in action last week, seen here lining out before delivering a volley.

The colour party guarding the valuable GMB flag, I think the eagle is Front Rank.   

Flank company with very yellow plumes! 

The other flank company with very red plumes!
These are once again Victrix plastics with amazing plumed shakos complete with cords and gaudy dangly bits. Barry Hill's talented team did the brush work. I repainted the plumes to fit my preference for very vivid bright colours. It all looks a bit much in close-up BUT on the table-top it makes sure the unit stands out. I even touched up the brown uniforms for something a bit warmer, OK brighter! Not as bright as the Neopolitans, but then who is?

Brown isn't a colour normally associated with Napoleonics, some Russian and Prussian hussars wore brown and of course those Caccadores but it's pretty rare amongst all the reds, whites, blues and greens. I'm very pleased to have ticked this box on my wish list, I might add the sister regiment at some point too, who knows where megalomania will take me.          

Centre companies with very green plumes! 

Now this is how I like to see my units - from behind, the alternative usually means they're running back in terrible rout.
All too common in my case.
I wonder if they'll ever sort out the slight dimple on the shako tops?   
That's it for the Corsicans. I have three new brigades for you next, Poles, Nassauers and then Westphalians. After that there's the Portuguese Legion and a mucky Piedmontese Legion if I can source a flag, any help on that is much appreciated.

Take care out there, Jeremy