Friday, October 24, 2014

Battle of Lissewitz, 1806

Apologies for the lack of posting here for a while; life (and death) have got in the way of much hobby-related happenings in my neck of the woods! What with having to apply for my own job (Grrrrr!!) after the latest restructure at work caused by cuts to tertiary education in the Federal Budget, and Pete's untimely death, it's been a rather stressful couple of weeks. I've had a couple of games at the club, but haven't had the time or inclination to document them.

Here I'm rectifying that lack of posting with the first of 2 batreps, this one the Battle of Lissewitz, 1806. This was one of Darren's scenarios set in the Prussian Campaign, where the French were driving on Berlin. I'm not sure if this was a historical battle, as I can't find reference to it anywhere. As there were Russian troops involved in our scenario, it probably was most likely fictional. I'll be able to confirm that after I speak to Darren this weekend.

Under the able command of General Garry, Robin, John R. and Andrew B. and I commanded the French forces against the forces of reaction led by General Tim, commanding Quinny, Jim and John W. They were one player short as Pete was supposed to have a command on the Allied side. The French forces were to push through the allies and march on Berlin. The Allies, obviously, had to stop us. My entry point was bordered with heavy woods with a stream in front of me. My orders were to take the village just across the stream and link up with Robin's command, then push on ahead if able to. As you'll see, I managed to do the first 2 no problems, but the 3rd objective was just a bit beyond us!

As I don't have the appropriate bicorne era French troops, I borrowed some of Darren's lovely Eureka figures while he carried out umpiring duties.

The layout.
My troops are in the bottom right corner.
Tim supervises Jim's troop deployment!

My vanguard.

Quinny's vanguard holds the village across the stream.

On the other flank, the Prussians hold the villages with a reserve to the rear.

While my vanguard moves forward, my 2nd brigade enters the table! I had good luck with my dice for rolling for entry.

The first battalion across the stream uses the rickety bridge..

While the second goes across the river, picking up 2 disorders. Quinny initially didn't realise that the stream was fordable and scrambled to redeploy the troops in the woods to meet my advance

My elite light infantry force a crossing over the bridge with the general attached. Can my terrible luck at river crossings be finally set to rest?

Meanwhile on the left flank, my infantry and artillery advance in the teeth of Prussian artillery fire!

Robin and Andrew have forced John W.'s troops out of the village, while John R.'s cavalry move up in support.

My assault across the river looks like it's going well, with the woods being outflanked on 2 sides.

Quinny's general has other ideas. He thinks he's Gandalf: "You shall not pass!"
Unfortunately, he was right! Prussian artillery fire killed my general and in the resulting morale check, the light infantry broke and fled to the rear! 
The dead general.
If there was any time that Pete was looking down on this game, this was it! That was typical of Pete: when there was a chance that the general would become a casualty, he usually managed to make it happen!

My final brigade enters the board as the breaking unit leaves.

I win the woods as Quinny retreats to the village and his guns position themselves for flanking fire.

Quinny's reinforcements arrive in the distance, but so do two battalions Garry's guard infantry on the extreme left

A battalion of Chasseurs of the Guard!
A huge regiment of Prussian cavalry also moves up to support Quinny's troops in the village.

Serried ranks of French troops advance.

Garry's guard troops cross the stream as Quinny's troops try to intercept

My infantry moved up to fire on the flank of Quinny's column in order to distract them from what was coming: Garry's guard troops charging straight ahead!

The Guard went through the Prussians like a hot knife through butter. Quinny failed his resulting divisional morale test... 

...and all units head for the hills! Don't stop to collect your artillery, boys!

In a bit of an anti-climax, I take possession of the vacated village. Tim's cavalry screen Quinny's routing division.

The traffic jam over the stream grows.

My infantry fans out to the right, with the light cavalry deploying on the hill.

I had assumed that the infantry square blocked the Prussians' charge line...

...but sadly, I was mistaken!

The infantry fired on the Prussians' flank...

...sending them off to the rear!

But what's this? The Allied reserve makes and appearance just where Quinny's division had been!

Prussian and Russian guard infantry and cavalry! 

Russian Grenadiers!

My infantry fan out, linking with Robin's corps on the right, facing the front.

Garry's unstoppable Chasseurs of the Guard gear up for their next assignment

Tim charges my guns, whose gunners flee for the village.

My infantry fire on the cavalry's flanks, sending them off back where they came from.

Guard vs. guard!

Quinny's Prussian guardsmen charged, so I met them half way with my big battalions.

A draw!
To the left, a lone battalion of Chasseurs in closed column gets blatted by infantry and artillery fire.

The situation at the end of the battle: The French have advanced, capturing all the villages, but stiff resistance has stopped the attack.

Despite my best efforts, Quinny managed to get the Chasseurs to break! That was victory enough for him!

Thursday, October 16, 2014

A New NWA Blog!

Paul, you old dog! You didn't let anyone know you'd started a blog! Well, consider yourself pimped, sir!

After the sadness of my last post, it's great to share some good news: NWA Napoleonics and Pirates stalwart, Paul, has started a blog called Duke of 1815 where he is going to chronicle all things wargaming. He's started off with a commission he's doing for another club member; 1809 Saxons.

As I think you'll agree, he has a lovely way with his paint brush! I look forward to seeing more of his work and his exploits on the tabletop. Paul and I battle it out for the worst player award, so I think he'll have some entertaining batreps in the future!

Please go and visit his blog and follow his wargaming talents.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Vale Pete Edmanson

We'll miss you, Pete
It was with much shock and disbelief that the NWA Napoleonics chaps learned today that we have lost one of our own way too soon. Pete Edmanson died suddenly in his sleep on Tuesday night.

Pete was a stalwart in the Napoleonics group who often faced my French with his Austrians, Prussians or Russians, but also played in the Pirate events and had a sizeable Dark Ages collection in 15mm and 28mm, partnering Darren and me recently into our SAGA forays with his Normans. He was renowned as 'Pistol' Pete after our Wagram game where he killed several generals (including mine!). His uncanny ability to knock down his opponent's commanders continued after that in the weekly club games to the extent that you expected to have your generals bumped off at some stage, no matter how the game was going!

As well as being a wargamer, Pete was a keen angler having traveled the nation and internationally in pursuit of the perfect catch. Pete also was a knowledgeable ornithologist, too. He could identify just about any bird you could find, and many was the time down at Drouin during our January games that Pete would look up into the trees surrounding Tim's property and point out the birdlife, identifying not only the species but the gender of the bird, whether it was a juvenile etc. etc. He was mine of information.

He is survived by his wife Claire and his children and grandchildren, of whom he was very proud.

His quiet, gentle manner will be sorely missed. Pete, you were a scholar and gentleman.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

The Great Martian War 1913-1917

How come we weren't taught this at school? It's a conspiracy, I tells ya!

Saturday, October 4, 2014

I'm a Wiener (Again!)

I'm a happy-dancing silly-sausage!
Jonathan Freitag over at the Palouse Wargaming Journal recently ran a competition to celebrate the 2nd anniversary of his blog. The prize up for grabs was a copy of Henry Hyde's Wargaming Compendium with the runners-up receiving a Kindle version of the compendium or a book on Naseby.

The Prize!

 The device he'd settled on was a Haiku competetion on two themes:

  1. What wargaming means to you; or
  2. Why you should have the Compendium
I was a late comer to the competition and dashed off a haiku on Option 2. I wasn't really expecting to win anything, but enjoyed the challenge and was impressed by everyone else's efforts. I was very surprised, then, to find that Jonathan had rated my entry highly enough to win the runner's up prize!

Here's my Prize-Winning Haiku:

A compendium
Is all I need to master
An elusive art.

Thanks again, Jonathan, and Happy 2nd Blog Anniversary. Here's to many more!

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