Friday, April 02, 2021

"One Hour Wargames" - Scenario 22 - "Ambush" - Set Up and Game - Redux!

The game of a few weeks ago, while absolutely hilarious (clicky), still rumbles (and rankles) in the back of my mind as it was quite clearly one of those utterly strange, 'quirks of fate' type game, where die rolls and their outcomes resulted in an outrageously easy win for the Royalist/"Blue" force...

Time then I thought, to have another go, and confirm one way or the other whether the scenario is flawed, or whether it really was just luck last time... 

DG and I are about to embark on our next virtual game, which will be an American War of Independence outing, using Battle Chronicler, and my go-to AWI rules by Will McNally (details as ever in the project page in the side bar), so I thought, 'why not?', and set this game in the period as well - I never need much of an excuse to get those glorious Minifigs out of their boxes..  

Off we go...

Forces for each side were diced for on the relevant table in the book, the only change being to ignore the skirmisher column and substitute regular foot.

I threw for and deployed the Red / British (or rather Hessian) force ie. the ambushed force, first. They got five regiments of foot, and an artillery piece (classed as light). I deployed them in a straight line, two of foot, gun, and two of foot, with another unit set back as a reserve, and at the front of the allowed  deployment zone..

The Americans threw and got three of foot, and a regiment of horse, so I deployed one of the foot regiments in the redoubt with the rest of the force  at the edge of the wood waiting to unleash death and destruction...  

All foot for both sides get maximum strength points (6), and are classed as regular with no morale modifiers - there are also no national modifiers, so both sides are equal in fire/melee..

On to the game - which was a cracker...  click on any of the following to embigen..

Initial deployment and table layout following.. the line of trees marks the edge of the wood

End of turn 1, following.. and an immediate change of fortunes for the Hessians (c/w with their Parliamentary colleagues in the previous game) - the American infantry have piled out and attacked the first/nearest Hessian regiment in the flank with the other American regiment providing an overlap..  in an outrageous change in fortune though, the Hessians throw off the attack, and both sides recoil! The American cavalry however are better..  crashing into the rear of the second Hessian regiment in the line, the Hessians are sent howling off into the pre-dawn dusk (the unit with the red dice / rout, heading for the right table edge following)...

End of turn 2, following.. not put off in the slightest the American infantry pile in again, and this time the second regiment have enough movement to bend round and attack in the rear rather than just providing an overlap - the result is inevitable, the Hessians break and run (foreground). The American cavalry pivot, and attack the artillery, routing it (the crew can be seen legging it)..

End of turn 3, following.. the Hessian fight back starts.. the first Hessian regiment to rout recovers, and the Hessian regiment next to the artillery turns to face the American cavalry who are about to charge and deliver a stinging volley stopping them in their tracks (shaken/yellow dice)..  the American foot advance rapidly to get into the fight. The British general meanwhile has chased after the other Hessian regiment to provide aid in the forthcoming morale check...

End of turn 4, following.. the American cavalry has had a retire morale check, but the two American foot regiments (one of whom is French) march on with flags waving and drums drumming - the green flagged regiment charge, but are halted in their tracks and sent packing - can Gallic verve save the day?? In the background another Hessian regiment has been sent packing, but the artillery crew have rallied, and the British general's presence has also steadied another regiment..  things are getting desperate for the American's, and the regiment from the redoubt ready themselves to enter the fray..

End of turn 5, following.. a turning point move...  the British re-crew their artillery, all the morale checks have been cleared, and two un-blooded Hessian regiments send the French packing..  the only glimmer on the horizon is on the British/Hessian right flank where the cavalry and the garrison are ready to take on a single slightly battered Hessian infantry regiment

End of turn 6, following.. the American infantry both recover enough to halt, but take fire from the British artillery, elsewhere as expected that battered Hessian infantry regiment breaks and scatters while the British general organises his remaining troops to cover the flank..

End of turn 7, following.. charge!  The American cavalry who have worked so hard throughout the game charge and are halted in their tracks by a perfect volley..  the green flagged regiment however have girded their loins, passed their morale check and charged home on the artillery sending their crew off in disarray for the second time this game, they are however, about to be flanked..

End of turn 8, following.. the flank attack sees for the green flag regiment, the cavalry fail a morale check and rout from the table, and in the melee the American regiment from the redoubt are also sent packing..

...end of game..  the American general realises that he can't achieve his goal and orders his troops to retire..  "we shall fight again"!

Post match analysis:
  • one of the quirks of the scenario is that it is only the blue player that can win - all the red player has to do is survive for the game duration...   anything else is a red win..
  • realising that, and I've played the scenario twice which shows how dull I am, it makes no sense for the red player to deploy anywhere near the front of the deployment zone as that makes it easier for the blue player to get to you..
  • I enjoyed that..  good fun..  


  1. So a third playing is expected :-)

    Nice scenario and despite the opening devastation, there seemed to be enough successful morale checks to keep things ticking over is a suspenseful way. That is a particularly fine building, is it resin?

    1. Hiya Norm.. 3rd play? Almost certainly given DG is flexing his sinews of war even as we speak! The barn is indeed resin, bought it at Salute in 2006 (got to love a blog as a memory jogger).. manufacturer is Hovels in their 25mm ACW range.. part # 3AC "Barn with gambrel roof"

  2. Thanks for checking, I visited the Hovels site a couple of months ago (for bridges) and recalled some classic pieces. Will give another look.

    1. Not at all - I can't believe I bought it 15 years ago.. seems like yesterday! I bought #23AC at the same time and recommend that as well - they're chunky old pieces though, and take a fair amount of table space when on the table together.. :o)

  3. Once again a simple game that gives a lot of pleasure. I must get my AWI pieces on the table having just brought the Americans up to strength - after 50 years! Now the British must be sorted out. Whilst writing I must thank you for 'introducing' me to Ana Vidovic years ago. I find her pieces on Youtube most relaxing (although time stealers).

  4. I'm not familiar with Neil Thomas's One Hour book, so it's been interesting over time to follow your games through. Thanks!