There's been a lull in blog related activity of late, mainly because our second Menningen game was abandoned after both commanders decided that there was little to be gained by continuing but also because last week we all packed our bags and headed off to Scarborough for a long weekend at the Wargames Holiday Centre. I'll briefly cover the fallout from the Menningen game first of all, both sides having taken moderately heavy casualties in certain formations made the decision to withdraw. The Allies pulled back their advance division in Menningen and the French withdrew to Schweinfurt. In retrospect it wasn't the best game we've had due to the lack of involvement for several players. I have to put my hand up for that as I allowed Neil to set up too far forward on his initial deployment. what I should have done was adjudicate an opening encounter and then got the players to set up for a larger scale game.
Chris Cornwell (aka itinerant wargamer) gives his dice a good talking to, Mark Freeth wonders about his sanity.
So, as I said we all headed up to sunny Scarborough in Gods' own Yorkshire on thursday to play a couple of games on a truly grand scale. The first game was loosely based on Corruna, an indication of how loosely based it was is that I had command of the Kings German Legion. This didn't of course detract from the game which I think ended in a marginal victory for the French. One of the odd but possibly realistic things that happen on a thirty foot long table is that you have no idea about what is going on outside the player to your left and right. This can often result in people being convinced that having won in their sector they were on the victorious side, only to discover that large parts of their army are streaming from the the battlefield.
A nice shot from the Corunna game, British infantry attempt to cling on to the two central villages which are the key to the game. In the background Chris continues to berate his dice.
The game lasted until about two o'clock on Friday, and then we packed it all away and started the briefings and planning stage for the battle of Goerlitz. This is a fictional encounter in 1813 btween the Allies and the French commanded by Napoleon. Initial dispositions have the French thinly spread but with reinforcements arriving quickly. The Allies have the initial advantage in numbers but their reinforcements arrive at a much more leisurely pace.
The French take the first of the two villages at Corruna, in the centre of the shot are the "terrible 57th" (white shako covers) leading the line.
On the Allied right flank Eric discovered that his single corps was being assaulted by two French corps and was slowly forced further and further back. In the centre the Russians had more success and were able to push the French out of their defensive line. On the left Gordon and myself found that his infantry corps and my cavalry corps were opposed by seven regiments of light cavalry and lancers which meant that we had to get forward as quickly as possible before French reinforcements turned up.
Russian Guard infantry storm a French held village with great elan. This village had previously been held by the Poles and had cost the Russians heavy casualties in an unsuccesful attempt to take it.
The battle swung back and forth as they have a tendency to do and I became involved in my own little section of it so I can't really say what else was going on for much of the time. Gordon on my left was able to occupy a village covering the river crossing on our left flank and I was able to force back the light cavalry with my heavies. All was going well until the sound of bugles and a cloud of dust heralded the arrival of the entire French Guard on our unguarded left flank. Two divisions of Young Guard and one of Old Guard plus the Guard cavalry meant we had to redeploy quickly. Fortunately they would have to cross a river first and this allowed Gordon enough time to turn to his flank and deploy into some semblance of a defensive line.
The final act for the French cavalry, all that was left of the Saxon Garde Du Corps and the 1st Carabinniers after an abortive attempt to take on more than twice their number of Russian heavies.
Gordons' troops were never going to much more than a speed bump but they played their part and delayed the Guard for long enough to allow the Allies to take the centre. The final result was a marginal Allied victory, depending on who you listen to of course but as always we all had a great time and that's really the only thing that matters.
Tomorrow night we continue the campaign with the battle of Seehausen. Neil is away for a couple of weeks so you'll have to make do with my photography but I'll try to get a blog update done at the weekend.