Friday, December 21, 2012

Raid on St. Michel - Game 5 - "Heading Home" - the battle (Part 2).. End of Campaign

So after a period of intense family activity, and a trip with the current Mrs Steve the Wargamer to Bath for our annual extended period of pre-Christmas gluttony and drunkenness away from the sprogs, I finally managed to free up some time to return to the wargame table to complete the game DG and I started just before Warfare four weeks ago! (Thank goodness for the space for a permanent table..)

So in the last game (which you can read here [clicky]) you may remember that the tussle had been a truly gargantuan one, and had swung to and fro with first DG in the lead and then myself and so forth, at least three times (it really has been one of the best games I can remember in some time! ), but when we finished for the evening on move 19 (see next picture) I like to think that I had some kind of ascendancy.....  fear naught however, there was still time to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory!

So - in the following, from the right - you can see my cavalry (present but weakened) holding that flank - DG's cavalry had routed and he was somewhat wary (rightly I think) of charging formed cavalry with his infantry...

In the centre DG's infantry have crossed the wheat field and are lining the hedge albeit they are in a shaken state (as a result of artillery fire from my gun to their front) and will soon fail their morale test. I still occupy the cottage to the left (by the bridge) - in the mid-distance however, you can see what turned out to be the battle winning manoeuvre as my cuirassiers enter from the left of the wheat field....

On the left - a fresh battalion sits in reserve on the bridge, waiting either for a moment of glory, or a hole to plug.....!

Move 19
...and so the game re-commenced...  I apologise in advance for the picture quality by the way - I didn't have the use of my tripod for this game so I was taking pictures (without flash - I hate flash) by hand, and however hard you try, they're never as sharp...

By move 22 those cuirassiers had captured the wagons and were shepherding them back to the river and safety - job half done..  what worried the hell out of me was the way those two units had managed to reform just behind me!   You'll also note that I couldn't help myself and had charged with my cavalry (just right of the dice).. typical cavalryman..... charge at everything and anything.... either way, a plethora of "shaken" (yellow) markers shows nothing was about to happen and the Swiss on my flank were about to handle me roughly to boot!

Move 22
Just a few moves later  (below) and clearly my worries about the cuirassiers were well founded, though the wagons are well on their way to safety...   (interesting discussion at this point by the way... DG was of the view that as my cuirassiers had routed the wagons should automatically revert to British control.... an argument not without some merit but errrrm...  I wasn't so sure! In the end like all good opponents, we diced for it I think )

You'll note the reserve have advanced to cover their retreat...

Move 25
...three moves later (below) and on the right flank (bottom of picture for this view) DG was pushing hard up the road - a concerted attack by his infantry has pushed the cavalry away (they've routed off screen to the left) - the good news however,is that the wagon are safe in my camp and  I'm now well into a fighting withdrawal over the bridge...

Now it hadn't escaped me that in effect I'd done the British job for them - since the scenario objective was to get the wagons to "home"...  which was over the bridge and up the road....(!) I took the view that DG had no reserves, and it was a damn sight safer to defend them by holding the bridge..  nonetheless I advised DG that his troops had advised him that they could see men unloading the wagons and piling the booty on the side of the river....  if they got across I was going to throw it in, on the grounds I had plenty of time to recover it later and he didn't!

Move 28
End of game (following) at move 30...  I play the Will McNally Seven Years War rules (with modifications for the WSS) and the turn represents approximately 10 minutes so the action translated to about 5 hours of real time -  a brisk little action....  DG conceded at this point recognising that he simply didn't have the strength to carry the bridge....

Move 30

DG's forces were, of course, given the honours of war and were allowed to march home with standards flying but weapons reversed...

..piling the booty back into the wagons!
...and so to the butchers bill....

First the French - 20 points out of a total of 45...  roughly 44% casualties....

..but it pales in comparison with the British - they fought hard.. 34 points lost out of 65..  52%  casualties!

By general agreement battle honours were awarded to the cuirassiers in both armies who did sterling service ....


DG and I enjoyed this one and as a first, we played it via Skype in a little over 3 and a half hours... For anyone remote from a regular opponent I recommend it thoroughly, clearly not as good as an across the table set to in person, but a very good second...  my set up was as follows...  my netbook has a built in camera but I spent a mighty £7 on an external camera which I drilled to allow it to be deployed on my camera tripod as it meant I could move it around more easily, to focus on specific parts of the action... sound was good, picture was good, and no technical issues in the entire call..

Skype  set  up...


  1. Congratulations to the beautiful game :)


    1. Wow... you were quick, Vasiliy! Many thanks for your comment..

  2. Wonderful game and battle report. I need to learn how to do the remote camera and skype for when my son goes off to college next year

    1. Hi Uber Geek... been enjoying the robot stuff...

      I've been using PC's for almost 20 odd years now, but I can honestly say both DG and I were very impressed with Skype - it worked straight out of the box, gives brilliant results, is quite intuitive, and is free......! :o)

  3. Charles Grant and Skype, what a combination! Inspirational.