Thursday, 22 January 2015

The Battle of Gross Jagersdorf 30 August 1757

Field Marshal Apraxin spending a little too much time at the local inn unaware of what lies in wait"

The snow didn't materialise on my lieu day so my Dad and I headed up to Collins house for a Seven Years War game using Blackpowder. Colin had set up a re fight of the battle of Gross Jagersdorf fought between the Russian and Prussian armies. 

After rolling for sides I found myself in charge of the Russians alongside Collin as my dad was tasked with leading the attacking Prussian army. The Russian army had the numerical advantage, almost 2-1 but the Prussians had caught the Russian army unprepared and out of position.I have uploaded plenty of photos of the game here on this post but For a more detailed account of the game you can read this at Collins blogg at the following link:

Lt Gen Lehwaldt's Prussian forces ready to attack the surprised Russians.

One of my Russian Brigades on the March away from the wood.

The early morning fog rises and the battle begins with the sound of cannon fire

Russian troops desperately try to fall into formation, true to Blackpowder rules with out a great deal of sucess

My Brigade pushes through the wood, with the Grenadiers eager to charge the Prussian elite infantry who were suffering in a fire fight.

With a follow me order lead by the 'Druken' Russian C-C Field Marshal Apraxin ,they charged home, although they won the pursuing combat the Prusians held firm.

The Prussians fight their way into the wood pushing the Russian forces back.

After chasing tne Russian Currasiers away the Prussian Dragoons and Hussairs sweep into the unexpecting Russian infantry who crumble under such an onslaught 

The Prussians advancing into the wood

The Prussian Cavalry brigade rallies itself after a couple of skirmishes with the Russian Dragoons

The Prussian Grenadiers are shaken and finally broken

After taking Heavy casualties to the Russian guns the Prussian line infantry final close to combat range.

More Russian Grenadiers fight hard to hold back the Prussian line infantry as the game hangs in the balance.

Behind the river my Currasiers blunder their command roll and charge 3moves straight into the Black Huuasirs. The following melee sees the Hussairs and supporting Dragoons routed breaking the Prussian cavalry command. On the other side of the river With the Prussian Grenadiers broken the victorious Russians grenadiers high on adrenaline find themselves at the mercy of the Prussian heavy guns, so with one last cry they charge forward to the inevitable outcome.

Which is deverstsing canister fire, heavy casualties,a morale fail and a dead C-C too!

With the Russian brigade on the right flank broken the Prussian a Hussars and Dragoons flank the Russian grenadiers. Aided with some superb morale saving by Collin the Grenadiers not only held their ground over the first round but also managed to rout the Hussars in the second round of combat! However that was not to be the last of their troubles........

.....As a unit of Prussian grenadiers with a follow me order charged into the flank of the Battered Russian Grenadiers who by some kind of Devine  fate managed once again to hold their ground, Valiant indeed 

The last attack of the game saw the Prussian Garrison troops in a cruel twist of fate shaken and breaking the brigade. The troops were untested wich means you have to roll a D6 when you suffer your first casualty to determine their stanima, my Dad choose a bad time to roll a one!

All though my Dad had lost 3 out of his 4 brigades which resulted in the army been broken, the scenario was to inflict as much damage as possible onto each other's forces. In actuall fact my Dads Prussians had shaken or destroyed more Russians over the course of the game than the Russians had  inflicted on them so had come out on top as far as the scenario objective was concerned. With this in mind Collin determined that the outcome should be called a draw.

It was a interesting game to fight, my Dad with the Prussians, been heavly out numbered, was always going to find it tough to break the Russians but with abit more luck later in the game when he flanked the Grenadiers Twice to no avail, had he broken them their was a real danger of the Russian line been rolled up. As for me and Colin we suffered from some seriously poor command rolls as most of our generals were rated 5's and 6's and found moving our army a real problem. when we did have sucess we were unable to really capitalise on this, especially after I broke my dads cavalry brigade across the river. Had I been sucessful im moving my brigade I would have been attacking the Prussian rear unposed with Currasiers and two full strength line infantry which would have destroyed the Prussian army who were still fighting to their front. 
All in all though it was a good game and afternoon.

Wednesday, 14 January 2015

A very unsuccessful first game of Impetus

My Dad has rebased his Henry VII and Richard III war of the Roses armies to use with Impetus rules so I was offered a game at the weekend to try the rules out for the first time. I took control of the Kings army and was duely given a right pasting from my dad controlling Henrys force. I'm not to familiar with the period and although the rules were easy enough to pick up as the game went on, tactatlly I was found wanting. I made so many rookie mistakes I don't think I could fit it on to this page :) if I could play the game over again I would do things very differently, very differently indeed!

My first mistake was splitting my forces on deployment, my left flank ended up playing No part in the game when I should have had my archers in the thick of the action. 

The Kings army ready for battle

Henrys battle line at the start of the game

The early warning signs were there to see as all of Norforks units became disordered due mostly to failing movement tests.

A wall of arrows was to greet Richards men in the centre of the battlefield as the bill men retinue waited behind.

My attack in the centre faulted Badly as I found out how effective closing fire can be as my Halberdiers were shot up and then easily beaten in combat off the archers after becoming disordered. Also my attack was way to isolated and uncoordinated.

On my right flank Norfolks troops exchanged bow fire with some sucess against Oxfords archers although my dad caught me out of position when he charged his Billmen through his own archers to smash mine on the hill. My archers after been well beaten were destroyed as I had troops in base contact behind them. I'm used to getting support from troops in this position in Hail Ceaser but not in this rule set, so I had made another major mistake  

The two armies close for the final action of the game

After my Archers are destroyed my Billmen retinue also break when my Dads Billmen sweep into them following the defeat of my archers

Henry's men look on as Richards army collapses into full Rout!

At the end of the game all that remains of my army is Northumberlands troops on the left flank who played next to no part in the game.

King Richard leads by example by heading the army as they are in full rout!

The victorious Henry VII and his dismounted Knights capture the Kings personal tent and baggage 

As I said at the beginning of my post I was trounced in this game and it turned out to be a very bad day at the office. The rules really caught me out  and I misjudged a lot of things throughout the game, Although I did aid to my own downfall with some very poor tactical decisions from the outset. However  the rules were easy enough to understand as the game wore on and i enjoyed using them despite my heavy defeat. I will definetly benefit from playing a different set of rules away from the Blackpowder/hail Ceaser game mechanics and next time I'll be better prepared so Henry's troops don't have another strol in the park as they did this time round.

Friday, 9 January 2015

What's in store for 2015 and a little bit of Hail Caesar.....

Christmas over for another year and with the start of a new year I have started to give abit of thought on what my next project will be. No doubt I will be adding to my existing armies, my WW2 armies i constantly add to so I can't see it been any different this year! For my Napolionics French I would like to add another division of infantry, possibly done as Italians and my Macedonian force is complete (well for now anyhow). An early candidate for a new project is the war in Sudan 1882. I saw a superb Sudanese army on Pendrakens forum which really peaked my interest, especially the mounted Cammel units (what is not to like). If I venture down this road I will be using the tried and trusted Blackpowder rules so I think il order a copy of the Blood on the Nile supplement book to have alook at the forces to see if this twists my arm into doing them. The first show of the year and my personal favourite at York is just around the corner so no doubt the spending will begin down there and il probably head back home with more Fuzzy Wuzzies than I can handle :)
I managed to get a game in with my dad, despite him sounding like Marlon Brando on the Godfather due to a recent bout of flu. We ran a Hail ceaser "what if game" pitting my Macedonians against my Dads Chinnese army. The game was evenly balanced when we ran out of time with both sides losing a division each. Although my Phalanxs were turning the screw in the center of the Battlefield pushing the Chinese infantry back they were starting to become out of position so were becoming vulnerable to a counter attack. The Chinese Chraiots made short work of one Macedonian cavalry divisions and on the other flank both sides cavalry had fought to a stalemate. It was a interesting game aginst two evenly matched armies, I look forward to crossing paths with them again.
Here are a few photos of the game...