Monday, January 27, 2014

Great Napoleon at War Game-French vs. British and Brunswickers

Just one part of Madness Comics-A converted GROCERY
We decided to play a game "up north" so the guys that live up north (Dallas is pretty spread out) wouldn't have to drive south to Red Oak for a change.  We played at Madness Comics in Plano. I've got to give kudos to the owners and management for a great place to play.  It's the largest gaming facility I've played in other than at a con.  Highly recommended. Close to beer drinking is a plus as well!
We met several new players while we were there. Napoleonics just draws a crowd.  Nicely done Napoleonics like Clay's are just eye candy for gamers.  Hopefully we can build upon this game.

Short AAR: 2500 points per player (2 French, 1 British): 5K total
French played Infantry Division, Heavy Cavalry Brigade, Light Cavalry Brigade, Heavy Guns
British played Heavy Cavalry Division with Royal Horse Artillery in Support initially.  Most of the British units start in reserve and arrive/move as per the reserve rules. I was lucky throughout the game and had consistently good reserve rolls
Men at War French Infantry painted by John Stonecipher

Here's a shot of Clay's French. They are Napoleon at War figures painted by John Stonecipher. John is a painting legend in the DFW area.

Initial deployment of British Heavy Cavalry Division
Figures by Men at War, Campaign Games Miniatures, and AB Miniatures

My initial deployment was the British Heavy Cavalry Division supported by Royal Horse Artillery.  The French can be seen occupying the hill immediately to the front supported by Legere in the enclosed field

Brunswickers advance slowly on the left flank while the French hold the woods supporting the French division.  The Brunswickers are New Line Miniatures. I've found this line to work quite well with the giant-sized Men at War Miniatures.

British Infantry arrives on turn 1. I was sweating it but my ability to roll ones is a well known fact among the DFW Irregulars.  My friends that know how "well" I handle cavalry elements should be chuckling right now. I've been told face to face to "not touch the cavalry, Miller!"

Battlefield view on turn 2.  The French Heavy Cavalry Division has arrived and is moving down the road in the center of the field.  The French division on the flank has deployed into line and holds a strong position in the woods. French artillery has deployed to secure the center and the right flank.  British Light Brigade has arrived and advancing to oust the French from the woods. The British line infantry brigade occupies the village waiting for the French to "light up" the buildings.

The fight in the woods rages. I just love those crappy bendable bayonets. They just make my army look "so nice".   Call me picky. They just are poor quality in figures that cost as much as Men at War.   In the foreground, you can see the British Horse artillery moving to the right flank to support the Brunswick Light Cavalry Brigade that has stymied the French support of the Legere.

British Scots Greys prove yet again that they are the "noblest cavalry in Europe and the most poorly led."  I couldn't get a hit on the Cuirassiers if a hit was in season! I even got my son to get me some "big gaming dice".  I'll just blame the dice. It definitely was a close run thing.

Clay before he rolled HIS melee dice!

Clay's reaction to the Scots Greys use of rubber swords and why they wore funny hats.  He hasn't rolled HIS melee dice YET! Muuuhahahaha! Karma proved to be a real bee-atch!

Karma is a bee-atch....right Clay?

Scots Greys received a little assistance from the Dice Karma God. Both sides whiffed. Oh well, thanks for playing! The French Cuirassiers and Scots Greys just fought another round. I couldn't wound a general to save my life! Uxbridge on the other hand knew not to go "with the boys" this time!

The Brunswickers finally decided to get into line and get to work moving the French out of the woods.  The Brunswickers were supported by Dutch-Belgian cavalry.  You know them...the funny looking guys with bicornes and pink facings!

Mighty Dutch Belgian Heavy Cavalry-GCM figures

Once the supporting cavalry arrived, the Brunswickers were then commanded by a new player to Napoleon at War. He was definitely more competent than the British CIC. He pressed the French out of the woods. He then continued to press the French and separate them from the main French body in the center of the field. The British CIC was oblivious to the brave action and remained spellbound on the action in the center.

British Light Dragoons finally finished their tea and decided to make an entry as the French Light Cavalry Brigade advanced behind the Cuirassiers. The British continued to hold the village but one building was set on fire by the French howitzer. We never played this rule before. It was novel and kind of cool even though I kept taking stands from the unit from the fire.  OUCH!

Chasseurs destroy the remains of the British Heavy Cavalry

Clay started advancing in the center to see if the British CIC would act like a wet hen.  True to form, the British CIC met the advance and promptly lost a complete Heavy Cavalry brigade!  That'll teach ya' Uxbridge.  How's your damned leg?  Does it hurt yet?

The British launched their Light Dragoon Brigade frontally against the French artillery and remaining Chasseur regiment.  It looks cool doesn't it?  Yeah,  it only LOOKS cool. Clay commented that this charge would probably be the game.  Yeah, right!  The French Division commander calmly ordered his artillery to stand and shoot plus the remaining Chasseur regiment just kicked the stuff out of the Light Dragoons. I'm going to have to paint ME some Chasseurs!

Where are the Light Dragoons?

The British Light Dragoons decided to head home for a light luncheon.  The French taunted them for a second time as they moved to the divisional reserve area.

Brunswickers begin to close the door 

The Brunswickers pressed the French and made sure that brigade did not link up with the main French body in the center.  The redoubtable Dutch-Belgian cavalry is seen in the photo in support of the Brunswickers.  The Brunswickers are New Line Miniatures.

Frog Pressing

The British continue to press the French and compress the flank. Brunswick Uhlans and Hussars are supported by British Horse Artillery firing upon the square on top of the hill in front of Clay's pad-thing. The French have moved a Chasseur regiment to support the flank and an additional line infantry battalion to support the Legere plus artillery in a very compact position. Time to press some Frogs!

French flank begins to waver

French Chasseur regiment left the field due to poor morale roll while the Brunswick cavalry begins to move into the rear areas of the French. The French flank begins to waver.  It was definitely past time for a beer on both sides. I lost count of the number of game turns we played. It didn't matter. Six turns just isn't enough for larger games!

Game Over-British Pursuit continues

We were all ready after the French went down to an army loss rate of 50%.   This was a classic good game, down to the wire and last brigade.  Thanks to Clay and Scott Hendrickson for a great game!  Welcome to the new guys that played as well. We'd like to do this again at Madness Comics in Plano, Texas.  One just can't go wrong by playing there!

Next game?  Keep checking back and may you always roll a six!