Sunday, 24 January 2016

I'm still not Frederick

This past Saturday, a reduced contingent of the Hamilton Road Gaming Group used Black Powder yet again to play a Seven Years War game. Bear had to be elsewhere. This time Andy fielded his Prussians with the assistance of Martin as his left flank commander. Kevin and I rolled out the Russians. (Three brigades of line musketeers, one of grenadiers with one musketeer regiment, a heavy cavalry brigade of cuirassiers, dragoons, and horse grenadiers, and a light cavalry brigade of hussars and Cossacks. Add to that 5 cannon and one howitzer.) This always makes for an interesting game, although Kevin's dice were exceptionally cold. Mine were moderately warm up until the end, when they turned frosty.

Kevin's brigades in column. That way they could move even if their generals failed command.
The rules require the Russians to have at least one "idiot general".
I couldn't saddle Kevin with such a numb-skull so I took him.

Martin and Andy deployed their Prussians in line because the entire infantry is "superbly drilled" and will make at least one move even if their command fails. No idiot generals on the board for the Prussians!

Andy's wing with the heavy cavalry and a horse gun.

My wing of the Tsar's Finest after a turn or two.
Kevin and I got the initiative and stepped off quickly. We were all pretty far away from each other and, as I should've guessed, the Prussians didn't advance very far, waiting for the Russians to advance into the teeth of their musketry. We did our best to keep our solid line intact, but the Berliners wouldn't come out to play. Kevin tried an end run with his hussars and Cossacks which Martin met with his hussars. Kevin came out the poorer on that account. I tried to bring my cuirassiers around the left flank forest but they stalled out after Andy disorganised the lead regiment with artillery fire. The dragoons/horse grenadiers refused order for a brief time but came forward after a bit to guard the left flank of my one infantry brigade.

Three regiments of Russian cuirassiers. A real general could do a lot with them!

Our over-all commander, his flag bearer, and Cossack aide.
I believe I'm going to try to put all my commanders on round bases; It makes them distinctive and easy to spot on the table.

My grenadiers in column. They were originally based for Koenigkrieg - three bases of 4 per battalion, so for Black Powder, I simply strap two battalions together - which leads to a multiplication of flags. I don't mind that since it adds to the colourful look of the table for both SYW, Napoleonics, and ACW.

Our brave and dire opponents, the Prussians.

Martin adjusts one of his regiments. These figures are just SO colourful and pleasing to the eye.

Kevin's infantry battalion. Note the Cossack cannon crew on the far left and the Pandour regiment in line next to them.

A close-up of one of my lines. I'm still proud of my flags.

Andy broke a grenadier unit into skirmish order to move through a forested area. We've found some basis for this in the rules and we permit it when an infantry or dismounted cavalry unit moves into a wooded area, but only when moving through the wooded area. They can't do this in open country.

The Russian "Death Chicken" flags advance toward the Prussians and their Black Eagle flags.
Well, things didn't go so well for Kevin and I after that. My cuirassiers finally rounded the forest and took on Andy's kurassiers and dragoons. One of my regiments fell back as did one of Andy's to the flank attack was not a success. The Prussian infantry began to advance slowly, with both the Russians and the Prussians losing a regiment each to artillery and musketry. The Prussian hussars were both shaken which didn't permit them to do much of anything. The Russian hussars and Cossacks had broken and left the table. It was getting on to closing time at the library so we "extrapolated" the ending, the Prussians giving the Russians the "Golden Highway" to retreat to Brest-Litovsk.

I again forgot my resolution to use the oblique order with my SYW army. Looking back with 20-20 hindsight, I should've guessed that Martin and Andy would play the "waiting game" until something cracked. Ah, well.

Andy's flank force of kurassiers and dragoons.

My Russian cuirassiers round the spur of the forest.
Martin and Kevin's light cavalry mix it up on the far right flank.
Martin's hussars came out on top and sent the Russians packing.

An impressive array of Russian infantry.

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