Maybe I'll do a year in review thing at some point but not now. This post is about finishing off this massive battle report and trying to do justice to the input and enjoyment the players and I had.
As the title suggests the two gaming sessions covered here saw a conclusion, read on...
|Sievers cavalry were at once attacked by French and Westphalian heavies in the biggest cavalry melee I have ever seen at Marauder HQ - 164 mounted models plus a supporting Russian horse battery, lots of dice to roll - tense stuff !|
|Back at the Allied extreme right we look over the centre as both sides send forward skirmishers and bombard.|
Plenty of time for more rash attacks later.
|Behind the Allied left we see the Junior Russian Guard battalions and remnants of the Russian Grenadiers.|
Orf's Cossacks and Jurgass Prussian light cavalry prop up the flanks.
|One of two fresh Italian formations to take up position in the front line overnight.|
Not sure why the Bavarian skirmishers are attached, possibly pretty proxies?
|It quickly became apparent that the battered Prussian divisions couldn't stand up to sustained action for a second day so this one was retired. The three Russian Guard cavalry Regiments advance to break the French centre.|
|The Allied centre left remains very strong with lots of fresh infantry deployed in depth behind two batteries of six 12lb guns.|
These battered away at the French right to good effect.
|The French centre with massed Italians facing some depleted Prussians while a firefight breaks out in the valley behind the walled orchards. Two batteries fire in support while more infantry and the Middle Guard wait on the hillside.|
|A difficult maneuver is surprisingly well executed as the Prussians are withdrawn allowing the Russian Guard cavalry to pass in good order.|
|The French extreme left faces Russian Elites & Cossacks.|
|Tony greets the dreaded Saxon light cavalry in ye olde Englishe way - "Good morning Gentlemen!"|
|An over view of the Allied centre as the Guard cavalry line up a charge.|
|In the Allied rear a Prussian battery rushes to where it is needed.|
|The French right again - safe and sound.|
|While the Russian Guard cavalry regroup to charge again, the Russian Guard foot artillery resume bombardment.|
|A good over view of the opposing centres.|
|The Allies experience a setback as two brigades break, one Russian, one Prussian. |
They must retire 18", retreaters disperse, guns go low on ammo. Then they rally with no orders.
This opens up the Allied centre for the French to exploit if they can.
|The Russian Guard cavalry charge to save the day, the rallied Cuirassiers and fresh uhlans both close.|
|The Allied right enjoys some success as the Saxon horse battery on the hill top is cut down by Russian Guard Marines.|
|The French poised to advance in the centre which is now an open goal.|
|Blucher attempts to rally the demoralized Russians as the Russian senior Guards turn to stem the tide.|
|Chris looking confident.|
Cossacks buzz about uselessly as the Saxon heavies approach the battalion on the hill top.
|Chris sighs as I struggle to find helpful factors amongst the rules - clutching at straws!|
|Panning right to left|
|The broken Prussian brigade fell back again further weakening the shattered Allied centre.|
Note fleeing Russian battalion on the hillside.
|Jurgass puts in an appearance in a predictably unsuitable position.|
|The Finnish Guard Jaeger, the Lithuanian Life Guard and Guard Marines were all stopped or driven off on the French left. |
In the centre the senior Russian Guards faired no better with the Ismailovsk and Preobashensk being faltered.
|The French right begins to demonstrate in front of the Allied right making it tiresome for the Allies to redeploy.|
My feelings are that the French took a big risk on day one which paid off despite some serious setbacks early on - the Allies couldn't exploit these despite initial superior numbers.
Day 2 saw a very well laid French line with well thought out redeployment and insertion of fresh units into the line. The Allies by contrast missed the opportunity to pull the Prussians out and move the strong Russian second line into the centre. This proved fatal as the knackered Prussian centre was broken by fresh French troops and concentrated canon fire along with effective skirmishers.
This weakness at first allowed the Russian Guard cavalry to make three charges which had only poor results really. When two more Allied formations broke the Guard cavalry were left very exposed so would have to withdraw too. Elsewhere Allied attacks were unsuccessful too, even the Russian Guards failing to make any headway as they weren't properly concentrated, my fault entirely.
I must confess that this was an amazing game to be apart of. The scenario worked better than I could have hoped for. The spectacle was awesome I hope you'll agree. The see-saw ebb & flow gave a real feeling of Napoleonic warfare which was amplified by the depth and width of the table allowing things to develop, rear areas to function properly and maneuver to be meaningful. You will recall that we even managed a flanking table to depict colliding flank marchers.
The overnight phase in my view allowed a phase two to the game preventing it from becoming stale which is no mean feat when you think this took eleven weeks for four of us to play to conclusion. I would do this type of game again but maybe not immediately.
Lastly my sincere thanks to the two Tony's & Chris for a very memorable and enjoyable game. I hope you guys enjoyed following this one too. Best wishes for 2016,