21/06/2021 at 10:43 #157852Anthony MilesParticipant
Finally back to gaming again. Saturday, May 29th, we gathered at New Buckenham for our first “big” all day game since lockdown measures started to relax.
The game chosen was a 28mm, Shako II scenario based on the Battle of Maloyaroslavets fought on 24 October 1812 during Napoleon’s retreat from Moscow. It proved to be a decisive battle as the Russians prevented Napoleon retreating along his preferred route, forcing him back along the path he had advanced along, and stripped bare, the previous summer.
The main objective of the game was the village of Maloyaroslavets and it’s bridge over the river Luzha. The village was overlooked, on the Russian side, by a series of ridges providing the french with a steep climb after crossing the river.
The Russian VI Corps under Dokhturov with support from units of VII Corps started the game in control of the village, two separate built up areas sectors, each garrisoned by a battalion of Jaeger
My command would come on behind and to the left of the village, four battalions of elite jaeger and eight battalions of line infantry plus two batteries.
Facing us was Prince Eugene’s IV Corps with support from two divisions of Davout’s I Corps.
The French wasted no time in sending battalions straight up the slope to try and gain the village. Meanwhile Italian units crossed the river Luzha to the east and moved to threaten the Russian right flank. French cavalry crossed the bridge and deployed to the west to counter the Russian cossacks on that flank.
The first French assault on the western half of Maloyaroslavets overwhelmed the defenders causing them to flee in terror. First blood to the French.
My counter attack went about as bad as it could, lost the melee and three battalions melted away just like that shortly followed by the fourth after the brigade morale failed. Bugger.
Fortunately the French assault of the other half of the village faltered leaving the objective split. A slug fest now ensued around the village as the French slooged up the hill into the fire of the Russian troops along the ridge line.
Meanwhile the Russian light cavalry had managed to get the better of the French cavalry on the left flank and spent the rest of the game harassing the French right flank.
Maloyaroslavets finally fell completely to the Russians again after we won the race to reoccupy the western half after the French defenders melted away with the rest of their demoralised division. With the centre and left flanks fairly secure for the Russians all eyes turned to the East.
Eugene’s troops finally fell on the troops of Russian right flank initially forcing them to bend back before further troops emerged from the woods and hit their left. Several Russian guns were captured and the right flank was in serious risk of collapse.
At this point both armies were require to roll for and failed army morale checks. With both armies demoralised and not able to advance anymore the umpire called the game.
With around 10,000 casualties on both sides it was decided that the French would have withdrawn back over the river while the Russians still held Maloyaroslavets giving them a bloody and hard fought victory, much like the historical outcome.
It was great to get back to gaming again and on a large scale. Many thanks to the members who supplied the troops for a great days gaming.
More on this game on my Blog at Jabba’s Wargaming
Tony.21/06/2021 at 11:19 #157853Steve JohnsonParticipant
An excellent looking game!21/06/2021 at 15:00 #157860Iain FullerParticipant
Lovely looking game, great report too. Thanks for sharing it.21/06/2021 at 17:40 #157862Anthony MilesParticipant21/06/2021 at 21:34 #157872WhirlwindParticipant
Nice looking game.12/08/2021 at 12:48 #160400Sir AbleParticipant
Inspiring games – thank you
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