Bertrand's corps was caught across the muddy Ahebach stream with the rest of the French strung out behind him. I decided on placing the commands in roughly mid-battle positions with the players allowed to place their elements anywhere within the rather large command radius; even allowing contact within the first turn should they wish. Game on. (but the players generally followed the rather more discrete course)
|'Crunch time' approaches|
|Even on a small 8 by 6 foot table, lots of space is still available to keep reserves out of harm's way until needed (hint, hint)|
JimF's French Bertrand's Corps plunked itself on the hill north of Dennewitz and followed a cautious defensive stance while DennisC's Tauentzien's and Thumen's forces moved slowly to confront them.
|The Prussian artillery concentration. A careful observation will note a Russian gun as some Prussian forces historically were aided with Russian artillery batteries.|
To the south, the smaller commands of Oppen, Bulow (as Homburg-Hesse) and Krafft all under MikeB's guidance, went full tilt into the French (and their guns!) As Dennis did in the north, the French commands of PeterM's Reynier Corps and KevinA's Oudinot's combined artillery to concentrate their fire - rather effectively from early large number of high dice rolls ! - to much weaken the Prussian assaults. Eventually Oppen's command collapsed which allowed Oudinot to swing against the flank of Borstell.
|Borstell's forces included a Swedish cavalry continent of hussars.|
|Poles and Wuerttembergers are among the nations which formed a large part of Napoleon's forces in 1813|
|1813 Wuerttemburgers made from modified Perry Austrians and heavily altered shakos, lead Bertrand's defensive stance.|
|Saxons of Bertrand's Corps. Modified French style plastics most with trimmed Prussian shakos but some with Russian forage caps or 1809 shakos which are close to the Saxon uniform at the time.|
With the Prussians forces strength waining and the French still holding the strong hill positions north and south of Dennewitz; and the player's seeing that the Command Morale Chart was not to be toyed with ( grin ) the Prussians ordered their withdrawal.
Not a historical outcome of course. It is harder for the attacker to use their artillery effectively as it takes a patient command process to allow the artillery to set up, time to soften up the enemy and finally to organize the infantry and cavalry attacks. The players, while all experienced wargamers and all having played at least one of my games and rules, still fall to the excitement and tend to charge forthwith.
The post-game analysis had some discussion about tactics and while related to the rules of course, (taken advantage of?) these were more tactical for historical play rather than holes in the rules.
The players seemed to like the scenario saying they still had maneuver space even if the forces were close to each other. Not bad to have a large Napoleonic battle of 28mm on a 8 x 6' table. I will downgrade the French forces a bit for playability. At this point of the war, their units were understrength and tired and but find themselves in good defensive positions.
I will put on the game again at the big Salute convention mainly as I have put some effort in the organization and labelling and, more importantly, have everything already packed!
|French hussars in late war uniform|