Wednesday, 11 April 2018

Bunker (Breed's) Hill 1775

This was the battle of Bunker Hill 1775 played with Carnage and Glory2 using my 40mm AWI collection. .  Actually the conflict took place on Breed's Hill.  Bunker Hill was to the rear of the action, and while there were American troops there who could have reinforced, they played no part in the battle. The Battle was fought because these Hill's were in position to bombard Boston and the British Fleet in Boston Harbour.  General Howe initiated an amphibious landing on this peninsula in order to dislodge the American Artillery. The American's held three sectors.  A fence line on their left, Breed's Hill in the Centre and Charleston o their right. In our game there were two distinct assaults on American lines.  The first assault was against the fence line on the left by Stark's Brigade by British Elites.  Stark held the line.  Meanwhile, General Pigot on the British left was making a plodding advance because of continual harassment by American Skirmishers in the Town of Charleston. The British then waited until reinforcements arrived under General Clinton. Once Clinton was able to take his place on the battle line, the British charged up Breed's Hill against the Entrenchments.  In this second assault the British were able to gain victory.  As in the real battle casualties were heavy for the British but not as heavy as the real life battle. In the real battle there were three assaults rather than two, with the third assault lead by British Marines winning the day. I advised the British at the beginning of the game that time was of the essence.  There were potential American reinforcements nearby.  I assigned the British a minor victory in light of the time taken to take the Hill which was on the outer limits of time I had in mind for the game.

Skirmishers protecting Charleston from Pigot's column.

Charleston from the American side.
Gridley's 3 pdr battery entrenched on Breed's Hill.

Colonel Stark's Brigade holding the fence line

Stark's exceptional leadership did much to shore up his brigade.

Above and below, American troops entrenched on Breed's Hill

General Prescott.  American CIC

British Lights and Grenadiers advance to dislodge start from the Fence line
while demonstrating in front of the trenches on Breed's Hill
First the Lights and then the Grenadiers were repulsed by 
Stark at the Fence line. 
British 12 pdrs kept up a steady bombardment of the entrenchments
however failed to do much damage because of the long range.  For lack of a 
40mm Cannon I used a Brass Pencil Sharpener!

Entrenchments with Charleston in the distance on the American right

Pigot's column makes slow progress in light of flanking fire 
from the skirmishers in Charleston.  On turn nine Charleston 
was set on fire due to British naval bombardment.  Pigot's 
artillery, not pictured, landed with the wrong ammunition and was not 
available until turn 9. 

Pigot's slow advance.

Brigade Stark holds firm

The British advance against the fence line.

Charleston engulfed in flame.  Only skirmishers could remain 
in the town.

The second assault on American lines.  This time against the
Entrenchments of Breed's Hill.

Reinforcements with Clinton lead the charge.

The left trench is overrun by the British.

With the correct ammunition, Pigot's 6pdr battery is finally brought 
to bear.

The American's have been dislodged by the British

Casualties of War

Thursday, 8 March 2018

Guilford Courthouse 1781

Played a game with my 40mm AWI for the first time in a long time.  AWI is really a good
period to play with larger figures as the battles are quite manageable in terms of numbers. 
Perfect for my rules of choice, Carnage and Glory.  The 40mm scale is easy on the older
eyes, both for painting and just for seeing on the battlefield.

Guilford Courthouse is an interesting battle pitching a elite/line force against a larger
militia/line force.  Historically the Americans deployed their troops into three lines.
The first two were milita lines and I rated them raw and trained respectively.  These first
two lines were situated in a wooded area. In history the militia lines were asked not
to fall back until their had fired at least two volley.  In our game the British chose to
be very aggressive charging at every opportunity and pushing the militia before them. 
Out of six milita units in the first and second line, all but one of them retreated without
firing upon being charged. By the time the British moved out if the woods towards the
third line of continentals, the American army morale was starting to be affected on account
of the militia performance.  In history it is aid that the British forces were pretty degraded
by the time they hit the third line and that the fight was toe to toe.  In our game the
continentals gave a good account of themselves but the British still seemed to have the a
advantage.  The militia just did not have much opportunity to affect the British.

I was worried I had created an uneven game but in researching the battle the British

lost about 400 men vs 1300 for the Americans...a 1000 of which were Militia who went
missing.  In our game the British lost about 400 men vs 1900 Americans of which 800
were missing militia. retrospect it was not that far from historical.  While the
British won the battle historically, it was considered a strategic loss as Cornwallis was
not able to replace these troops as easily as the Americans could.  That said American
losses were about 3 to one historically, but almost 5 to one in the game.

The view of the battlefield from the American side; just behind the courthouse.
First line of North Carolina Militia awaiting the British advance.
They were rated as raw and it showed.

North Carolina Militia skirmishers. None of the militia stuck around after being charged.  They skedaddled!!

On the British side, Leslie's Brigade on the right flank prepare to advance against the fence line.

British Guards and Artillery under Brigadier O'Hara advance up the road in the centre.

Brigade Webster advancing on the British Left flank.

Aerial view of the British advance once over the Fence and into the woods.

Webster's Light Infantry skirmishing.

The Guards plodding up the road.

Add caption

Royal Artillery limbered up and moving up the road.

Thursday, 8 February 2018

Maida 1806

The battle of Maida was fought in Southern Italy in 1806.  It came about as a result of an amphibious landing in support of the local insurrection of the Italians.  The real life battle pitched two very even forces together, approximately division sized with minimal terrain.  This makes for a very good introductory game or just if you are in the mood for a short game. The British had a major victory in both history and our game using the Carnage and Glory Two system.  
Map of the Battle
Thanks to Napnuts for the photo

The line battle took a ninety degree shift in our game with Kempt successfully advancing on the British left flank and Digonet on the French Right flank.  The only spoiler for the French avance was the British 20th line lurking in the bushes and preventing the French from exploiting their gains. 

Victorious General Stuart overseeing his deployment
A powerful light infantry division on the left overseen by the dubious General Compere.

The British view of the Légere for most of the game.
Light Infantry Battalions on the French Right Flank

French Right Flank with cavalry and horse artillery.  British had no cavalry but a preponderance of artillery 3-1
Colonel Kempt advances on the British Right Flank...sweeping the French Légere before them.
The embarrassing Lowry Cole forms square...then line....then square again....then line...rince and repeat doing much to instill confidence in the men!
French attack on the British left flank.  Successful except for the presence of the 20th line lurking in the scrub.
The 20th line unleashes a devastating volley against a French Légere unit casing 149 casualties.

British and French advanced on their own respective rights causing the whole line of battle to reposition almost 90 degrees form the starting point.  

Royal Corsican Rangers (and Sicilian Volunteers) were the only rifle armed unit in the game ut spent must of their time chasing French Légere around the table. They were a small but mighty unit.
General Comperes last unit at endgame.  A 1,000 man strong French line unit, in ongoing back step to keep within skirmish range to good effect.  
The Valiant RossShire Buffs

The Rutlandshires await the advance of the Polish Italian Legion, who despite the encouragement of the incomparable General Luigi Peyri never make it.  His mortal leg wound did not help.

Stuart viewing a battle won