Saturday, February 2, 2008

A Napoleonic Solo Game

I had a chance to play out a Napoleonic solo game set in the Peninsula this week. The picture below shows Wellington ad his boys forming up at the top of the picture. The brown cut out hills are steep, the lighter ones are gentle sloped, but rocky. The British left is held by the light troops, with a brigade of heavy infantry held in reserve. The center of the line is held by the Portguese and on the British right, we can see a brigade of cavalry and a brigade of infantry in column.The French have formed up with deep columns of infantry in the center, some light infantry holding the left flank and with their entire force of cavalry off table to the right, trying to out flank the British left. Unfortunately for the French the opening dice favoured the British, who seized the initiative and brought the fight to the French before their cavalry could arrive. By the time the French cavalry were getting into position, the British heavy cavalry had raced forward and caused the French light infantry to retreat to the safety of the hills, leaving their left flank exposed as we see below.

Here's a close up of the British attack on the French left one bound earlier. The British light dragoons are charging down on the French guns who have been unable to withdraw due to the fire of the British horse artillery. A regiment of Portguese dragoons rushes in to help.Fire from the French guns decimated one of the light dragoon regiments, but the other one and the Portuguese moved in as well, the guns was overrun and (since the French infantry had turned to face the threat) the victorious cavalry pulled out to allow the horse artillery to continue doing its work.
Meanwhile, an unsuccessful push in the center, left the French with only one chance of victory: turning the British left. The initial French charge looked promising. The French caused some significant damage and burst through the British hussars and horse artillery.....
But the British infantry had managed to get into fairly good position to stem the tide and held back the mounted onslaught with their unshakeable "thin red line".
With the French left in tatters and their cavalry attack on the right repulsed, the ongoing losses in the center of the battlefield tipped the balance and the French army quit the field in some disorder. The British were hard hit on their own left flank, but otherwise had suffered minimal losses. British 9-1 victory.