General de Brigade
Our most recent game was a Napoleonic battle staged at the club rooms on Saturday the 17th. Jeff had modified a scenario from one of the General de Brigade scenario books that featured a "delaying action" by the French against a larger Anglo-Portuguese force. Overall, the French had 2 Infantry Brigades (of 4 Bns each), a Cavalry Brigade (1 Hussar Regiment), and an artillery battery of 6 guns. The Allies had 4 Infantry Brigades (varying in strength at 3Bns or 4Bns) and a pair of artillery batteries. I led the right wing of the French line while Carl controlled the Left Wing, the artillery at our center, and our cavalry unit.
The French (half of the "French" troops were foreign "Legions") set up on a ridge line to await the Allied advance. The Allies quickly advanced in hopes of bringing superior numbers to bear. As always seems to be the case in such matters, they had more troops than room to deploy them. So, for a short time, the French enjoyed success as the French skirmish line caused much difficulty as Allied units tried to change from columns to lines to begin their assaults. The French advantage soon faded...
A quick aside... Once again, my dice rolling was far, far, far (did I mention FAR?) below average. I scored a lucky shot early on that killed the British General leading the British Left Wing. That was to prove to be my one moment of positive results. Throughout the rest of the engagement my troops never fired a shot higher than 5 on 2D6 and I was only able to pass @1/3 of all of my morale tests.
After a lengthy exchange of musketry all along our lines the British were finally in a position to launch a series of assaults on our wings while the Portuguese held the Allied center. The British units assaulting our left wing fared poorly in their melee rolls while my compatriot Carl was rolling well. On my wing (French right) the British assaults were blunted by poor rolls from the British commander. This led him to switch tactics and he simply engaged my line in a musket duel. My poor rolls quickly doomed my units to losing the firefight as superior numbers played the advantage of the British. My Brigade also began to take fire from the Portuguese units from the Allied center.
At game's end things were looking grim for the French side. We had lost half of our infantry units as casualties and Allies were atop the ridge line that we had been defending. However, this was a delaying action and we had held the British/Portuguese advance for just long enough that the battle was declared, to our surprise, as a minor victory for the French!
As always, our General de Brigade games are good fun and we all enjoy the battles. We have crossed into that rare (for our group) situation where almost everyone playing knows the rules well enough that there is very little need for flipping through the rule book to figure out how to do something. This leaves more time to discuss sports, our families, and all of the topics that fly around our game table... ;)
I am including a few cell phone photos for you to see but they are not very good pictures...
|View of French center and left wing early in the battle|
|View of French center and right wing as skirmish lines meet|
|View from behind the right wing of the French lines|
|French left wing's final positions|