The local big convention of 'Trumpeter Salute' gave me the opportunity to playtest the revised rules with a new group of wargamers. With Seth unfortunately unable to make it up due to workload, I decided to do not one but two tries at the historical battle of Ligny - the OTHER big battle of the Waterloo campaign.
The first try was Saturday night with six players. I did my somewhat lengthy preamble using now a point form explanation of the concept and rules. With an hour set up and about an hour to get the players together and familiar with rules we started. I must say with six complete rookies, we had a fair conclusion with the self imposed seven turns representing the approximately seven hour battle until darkness ended it historically. We were finished the seven turns by 11 pm so the game was 3 hours real time in length.
In terms of historic action, the game was a bit behind in the timing but I thought the Prussians could have declared a retreat a turn or two previous so it is close to the real battle perhaps. Good to know that the rules are that close to recreate the historic action. As a note, Game 2 was similar in timing! However the rules are still in development an not even close to be written in any coherent way. So don't ask for them!
|French view of initial set up from 'west' The hand with the stick is on Ste.Armand la Haye for those with any reference map!|
|Showing the Prussian left flank of Thielemann's Corps. Tonginne is in the foreground, Tonginelle to the upper right and Boignrr/Balatie to the left.|
|the salient into which Ziethen's Prussian Corps was forced to hold the many village river crossings.|
|Pirch's corps moves forward. Napoleon was initially unaware of this corps but welcomed it to move to form the reserve in the defensive salient. More for theFrench guns to destroy!|
|From the French side looking north and showing Gerard's attack upon Ligny with Milhaud's cuirassiers waiting for them to clear the village.|
|A great view from the 'east'. Steve A's hand of "Napoleon" pointing the way of the French attack upon Ligny.|
|The French cuirassiers emerge from Ligny [center]|
|The same scene from the French side. The Prussians have formed square [black square markers on the stands] [Center left of photo].Their reserves now tied up.|
|The battlefield looking from the 'south east'.|
|Prussian Landwehr element [ Warlord plastics with Old Glory metal mounted officer ]|
The new artillery rules worked (!), and after the initial trials, they went extremely smoothly and seemed to have the right lethality.
All in all, the Battle of Ligny was well reenacted.