The battle of Gotha went all the way to the wire with the Allies eventually taking their final objective on turn twenty four, the last turn of the game. Nicks' Austrians despite having been initially repulsed stormed forward to throw Andy's stubborn defenders out and leave Dom the French commander with little choice other than to issue an order for his troops to withdraw under the cover of darkness.
Neil's Russians storm the first village to be captured in the centre of the French line, the small wood to the right would remain in French hands for the remainder of the game.
The French position was based on a crescent of five villages which curved backwards towards the French side of the battlefield from their left. A reserve consisting of a division of Young Guard and a heavy cavalry division was positioned to the rear centre of the line where it could move to reinforce any threatened areas and another division of heavy cavalry was placed on the left though the ground there was possibly not best suited to their abilities.
Andy's French await the onslaught of Nick's massed Austrians supported by Russian Cuirassier
Though the French began the game with all of their troops on table the Allies had to wait for reinforcements to arrive based on a dice throw added to the current game turn. Fortunately for them Nick was able to bring his troops on relatively early as they had the longest way to go to engage the French right. A further Austrian division arrived on table to bolster the Allied right and this was able to put heavy pressure on Eric's thinly spread troops.
The reserve Young Guard division move out to shore up the French centre right. This was the only part of the original line which remained in French hands by the end of the game.
Almost inevitably the large numerical advantage enjoyed by Neil's Allied army eventually began to tell and despite localised victories the French were eventually pushed out of all but one of their defensive points. On the final turn Nick's Austrians finally ousted their opponents and the game ended in a victory for the Allies. This was useful for Neil as his army had it been defeated would have been out of supply and forced to retreat across country with the loss of most of its' guns and a large number of troops.
The final moments of the game, Nick's Allied troops prove too strong and numerous for Andy's French.
So another Allied victory and it was once again back to map movement. However with Dom's army which had been already weakened by the loss of a large part of one corp now suffering losses in another battle the French were relying on Eric's army in the north and Andy's army in the south. Unfortunately for the French, Andy had been forced to garrison Erfurt with one of his corps and when whilst trying to withdraw out of reach of Neils' troops Andys' remaining force bumped into Schwarzenburg commanded by Steve it was all over. It was decided that a fight between Steves' untouched army backed up by the Russian guard division and Andys' battered corps would have been to uneven and Eric graciously conceded defeat in the campaign.
Althought the campaign is over we will be starting another in the near future and will implement some further rule modifications a few of which we'll be trialling in a series of one off battles starting this week. I'll list the rule mods in my next update for anyone who's interested.