Home Forums Horse and Musket Napoleonic Bath-Tub Bailen Blowout, an AAR

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  • #160747
    vtsaogames
    Participant

    Smashing game using Shadows of the Eagles, details here.

    Good thing they ran away or we would have had to.

     

    It's never too late to have a happy childhood

    #160760
    Tony S
    Participant

    Wow!  Sounds like a great game – even if you thought you won, but actually lost.   You have the consolation that not only was the scenario you designed very finely balanced, but it had an historical outcome.

    But why don’t you people form square?   With the greatest of respect, that’s part of the fun of Napoleonics!

     

    #160761
    vtsaogames
    Participant

    Well, I didn’t form square because the Spanish cavalry is not that impressive and they were stuck behind their front line anyway. As for the others, search me. We haven’t played a tactical level Napoleonic game in the longest time. Evry time we have one of these cavalry charges I suggest forming square as the answer, noting that they are not the ideal formation to hold off enemy infantry or artillery. In one ear…

     

    In this case, the Spanish had the initiative on turn 7 and moved first. Moving second, the light cavalry got within charge range of their provisional battalion on their extreme left. We won the initiative on turn 8 and charged. A provisional battalion in line needs to roll 5 or 6 to form square as an emergenecy response, If they fail, no shooting, no close combat dice. So they tried to hold in line. They needed 4+ on 4 dice when shooting and got one hit, not enough to stop the light cavalry, who closed. The infantry needed 5+ in close combat becuase their motivation is poor. Cold dice gave them no hits. They already carried two hits from previous skirmish fire. The light cavalry started with 4+ for hits, -1 for light cavalry, +1 for charging, +1 for general attached, final score needed 3+. they scored 3 hits. with 5 total hits on the nfantry and 1 on the cavalry, the infantry lost. Losing units take another hit. Units with poor motivation rout at 6 hits. Away they went, giving out morale hits on a couple nearby friends. The cavalry Rolled for pursuit and had to, so they followed the fugitives into the regular battalion in line behind which had just taken a morale hit. The regulars couldn’t fire or change formation. And so it went.

     

    Yeah, enjoyed the game immensely. This is the first time I’ve run Bailen with these rules. Over the years we’ve also played Bailen with Le Feu Sacre, a home brew grand tactical rule set with hex mat, and a scenario from the Bloody Big Battles group files that included Vedel and Castanos. There are certain battles that I return to over the years. Braddock’s defeat at the Monongahela to see if rules treat woodland Indian warriors the way I think they should, Camden SC to see if the Brits smash Gates’ bad deployment, etc.

    It's never too late to have a happy childhood

    #160782
    Tony S
    Participant

    That situation with the light cavalry charge was an awkward and unfortunate one for the Spanish commander.  Seems like it was a bit of a chain of below average lock (losing the initiative, not terribly effective firing, poor melee).  Not great luck, but not abysmal.  The decision not to form emergency square seems reasonable, given the odds and harsh repercussions of being caught mid-maneuver by horse.

    I’m not sure that I’d agree with your friend that cavalry are too powerful.  Your explanation of the mechanisms and die rolls seem eminently reasonable for Napoleonic warfare.  They were light horse, but facing poorly trained and motivated Spanish who were weakened?  The outcome seems quite fair.

    That said, I haven’t played these rules yet!  Perhaps next week, when my regular Napoleonic opponent is free.  The trouble is that there is a such a backlog of great rules we have been wanting to play building up during Covid!  The club just finally reopened.

    I hope your enforced inactivity isn’t too onerous.

    #160785
    vtsaogames
    Participant

    Spanish militia, training since 1805 are a cut above the recently raised volunteers. One of the nice things about the rules is a two-tiered rating system, training and motivation. The militia has regular training (affecting firing and emergency response to charges) and poor motivation (affecting close combat and how much damage they can take). Spanish volunteers of this period are poor in both.

     

    Ah, the enforced break from gaming? It will be good when it’s over. Real Life…

    It's never too late to have a happy childhood

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