Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Tuesday Napoleonics - A Draw (Yes it was)

Last nights game of Napoleonics was one of maneuver and terrain.  This time round the terrain was virtually all on my side of the table.  Andrew had cunningly placed them to screw me around no end, so my hats off to him for forcing me into a position that made me rather desperate.

I confess that looking at the terrain set up I was half tempted to just not fight the battle and force a reroll of the terrain.  However I look at the position that not every battle is where you want it to be fought and that I'd give it a go and see what the result would be.  I was not optimistic about the outcome.

As can be seen I had a crooked stream on my right flank, a farm, a hill and just off to the left a hamlet and large woods.  Andrew had placed the terrain at the extreme edge of the deployment zone.  This neutralized my artillery and created funnel points where my would have to emerge from.  As you can see with the hill there were two sections which the french could cross, so I broke the battery into two 2 gun sections to cover the approach.  My approach was to sit in as much a defensive a position and see what the french would do.

I spent some time having to think out my deployment.  While I out scouted the french, which allowed me to setup after Andrew, I spent too much time I think analyzing how to respond.  Initially the french adopted a line, which did not in the least entice me to advance.  I occupied the buildings with my dodgy Landwhere, and waited.

This was the left flank which worried no end.  I was surprised that Andrew did not push this flank more aggressively.  My cavalry were set up to protect the flank, but I thought that with the horse artillery (now off on another mission) I would eventually loose, while hopefully dragging away the french cavalry as they pursued the routers.  Mind you I could have perhaps have won the cavalry duel (oh who am I kidding!).  The Landwhere were sent into the buildings where they actually drove off a french attempt to take the buildings off them.  
I spent more of this game reacting to Andrews troop movements than initiating my own.  The few actions I did, were where I thought I had a decent chance of breaking up his plans.  I will generally pursue troops that have fled, mainly because Andrew tends to rally them most times than oft.

The french guns were a problem.  The fact that my guns were not in any position to challenge them frustrated me, especially as I had left the limbers behind, so a 50mm movement was slow going.  In this picture we see how I chose to (successfully) charge a french battalion that was in square (fearing the Hussar charge).  Two battalions I had sent out to lure the french cavalry out was just shot to pieces by the artillery.
It was a tiring game.  Both Andrew and I were fatigued for various reasons and I called the game at 10pm.  While I was prepared to concede the game (I could not see how I could pull a win) we decided a draw was a more logical conclusion with night closing in.

Last photo of the night.  The french horse artillery evaded the Hussar charge previously and were set up causing problems off to the left (not in photo).  My other unit (left) charged another french battalion in square, breaking it.  My Dragoons were waiting for Andrews heavies to commit.  The cavalry skirmish at the top of the photo was a win for me, chasing off the french.
So a draw.  Terrain placement in this game played a big role in the length of the game and how the battle played out.  I'm now a little wiser with regards using the terrain to my opponents detriment (I think),  All up a good game with a good opponent and friend.  So here's to next week then.

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