Monday, June 22, 2015

Battle of Waterloo, June 18th 1815

To celebrate the 200th anniversary of the battle of Waterloo, we again ran Ken’s scenario last weekend. It was a pretty good game ... for the Allies, the French side had horrible die rolling at all the wrong times!

I tweaked the scenario for this 2nd run of the game, as we were playing at the store on a smaller table, I had no choice but to crop the battlefield. I also learned some lessons from the first time we ran the scenario in January. I chopped the map down by two feet to fit our max table size, and in addition squeezed the map even more to allow for some room to maneuver on both sides of La Haye Saint. I also changed up the area around Papalotte by putting more forest around it and moving it towards the Hanoverian Line.
For the special scenario rules, I eliminated all the special Divisional Columns rules as they just caused all sorts of headaches and did not add anything to the game play. I also restricted the movement of the two British brigades and the detachment of rifles for a couple of turns (worked well). Streamlined the reinforcements (though most did not come on) and tweaked the victory conditions. I really liked the way the Prussians are Coming rule mechanic worked. It was effectively a timer on the French attack.

The Battle

Right away the game did not bode well for the French, as they failed to move two of their five leading brigades and third brigade decided to march to the right instead of forward!
The 5th Militia watches from atop the ridge as the French 2nd division slams into the rest of the Dutch brigade. Sadly for the French, the Dutch held up very well to the assault, and so the 5th was not even needed. That said, this brigade suffered the brunt of the French attack and broke just before the French army retired from the field of battle.

A 4 gun section of a Dutch horse battery survived the fire from the French grand battery. It proceeded to fire ball and shell into the approaching battalions from GdB Aulard 2nd Brigade of 2nd Division.

The first attack on La Haye Saint has already failed from the south, but a lone unsupported French battalion vainly attempts to drive out the Germans from the 2nd KGL light battalion from the West.
GdB Bourgeois would send a battalion from the 28th Regiment to drive out the company of 95th Riflemen holding the sandpit, while the other three battalions of his brigade attacks (unsuccessfully) La Haye Saint from the East.

GdB Nogues four battalion of 1st Brigade, 3rd Division, finally get moving toward the enemy, as they try and support the battalions from GdB Pegot brigade of 4th division who are already engaging the Nassau regiments.
The Nassau battalions from 2nd Regiment hold off the attack for most of the day, but eventually the French numbers tell and they break. But not before a couple of Hanoverain battalions move onto the ridge and two of the regiments of Hussars from MG Vivian’s 6th Cavalry Brigade charge the French battalions forcing them into squares.

The fire from Ross’s heavy 9lb battery were instrumental in driving off the battalions of GdD Donzelot’s 2nd Division.
Bailey, who commanded the British right, double checks his victory conditions, “hold ridgeline … check.” It was a Stunning Victory for the allies as the French were not able to capture either objective during the game.

Even with the changes, the French were once again handily defeated. We did not even get a chance to see what the cavalry reserves for both sides could do, as the French never really got close to Objective A (ridgeline). But honestly both French commanders (Steve and Mark) had some of the worst die rolling by a side I have seen, even when Mark rolled above average I would hot dice him! So I am reluctance to change anything until we have another go and see if the dice were the main issue.

Though it could be a while before we do another game, we were talking about shifting our focus to 1813 and doing up some scenarios from the Battle of Leipzig.

1 comment:

  1. Very nice report, love the map and the splendid photos!