Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Battle of Mark-Kleeberg - General d'Armee

Last saturday we had our second run through of the GdA rules ... I really did not get to play for several reasons, more people showed up to game than expected, had store customers and unbeknownst to me at the time, was coming down with a bad chest cold (still kicking my butt!)

The scenario had most of the Polish 26th Division defending Mark-Kleeberg, I decided to have the Vistula Legion rated as an elite unit, mostly to see how elite units fare in the game than any statement about the quality of the unit in question during 1813.
My latest scratch built building is on the far right.
I made the village three sectors, and was able to test out the "tall" 20mm idea I am leaning towards for villages. And in this case, think it work out very well. The other two polish battalions along with a battery held the French right anchored on a school house complex.

A polish battalion and artillery battery were in the open linking the school with the village, they supported the battalion in the school that ended up bearing the brunt of the allied attack.

Another French brigade (lower left), this one from the 51st Division was
tasked with keeping the Austrian's on the other side of the river.
Though hard to see the hill, two brigades of the 52nd French Division were on reserve behind the creek.

The French had to keep a brigade near the ford to keep the Austrians from arriving to the battle.

The calm before the storm ... Looking from the Western side of the Pleisse River where the Austrians are trying to force their way across. The Allied units will be arriving from the right side.

French Columns waiting to support the Polish troops occupying Mark-Kleeberg ... turned out they were not needed and instead turn and faced the russian troops arriving from the flank.

1st Bn, 8th Infantry Regiment (polish) 
The Polish battalions on average were a little over 225 men, so I decided to combine 1st and 2nd battalions of the regiment into a standard sized battalion for GdA.

The detachment comprise the fusilier bn from 12th Brigade and two reserve Bn's from 9th Brigade!
Col. Lobel detachment of fusiliers and reserves under assault orders advance quickly upon the school house. The tactic look good ... at least until the combat started :)

Initial actions of the battle
Along with their brigade skirmish screen, the Prussian detachment on the left were the first troops to engage the Polish. Two massed columns charged the polish defenders, both sides supported by infantry. The odds favoured the more numerous Prussians but not by much and the Polish held the initial round of combat.

Several Bn's from the 10th Landwehr Infantry Regiment 
The Prussian reserves arrive in the center with orders to take Mark-Kleeberg ...sadly this was as far as they would advance!

Both brigades of  GdD Semele 52nd Infantry Division
The French commander started releasing his brigades in reserve to respond to the multiple threats opposing him. Turns out he did not need most of these units.

French 6lb foot batteries from IX Corps
The batteries on the hill got into the action by engaging prussian units with long range fire.

The final round of combat had the Prussians with a 13 to 9 dice advantage ... they lost 1 to 6!
The Polish defenders held on but it looked grim for them as the combat continued ... But of course the stubborn polish troops threw the massed prussians back!

1st Landwehr Cavalry Regiment 
The Prussian landwehr cavalry pretty much just suffered under French bombardments during the battle...

The Russian had even less men per Bn than the Poles. The whole 14th Division was
 less than 1600 men and was represented by four small battalions and a large battery.
The Russian 14th Division moved on from the right flank, but soon became a mass of confused units, as it tried to face two directions and make room for the Russian cuirassier brigade to charge through them. It did not work out to well, especially when a unit of Polish cavalry charged that mass of men.

The attack stalled out so they called the game early. It was at that point a solid Polish victory but the bulk of the Allied troops had not been engaged. Ken in particular had some horrendous die rolls for activating brigades ... even with the attachment ADC he had multiple turns with hesitant brigades.

This game did not flow as well as our first game, though I think this was due in large part to a larger game, more people and everyone still new to the rules. We are also suffering relapses of Black Powder tactics, in that we are used to freely moving around battalions, which is not the case with GdA as the maneuvering of individual battalions is more restrictive.

We have another game scheduled for the end of the month and suspect it (and every additional game) will go smoother as more of us have the rules in hand and have forgotten our BP gaming foibles.

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