Sunday, 8 November 2020

The 5th Century in Britannia: Part 3. Ambrosius, Uthyr and the Death of Hengist.



 Once again the following article is my personal interpretation of events as a wargamer. Information of the battle site of Maisbeli I found online and in a book written by Ilka Sylvanne.

The original position of the actual town on rising ground to the east of  Mexborough is my own supposition.

In the early months of 462AD, Hengist, leader of the Germanic tribes in Lloegyr , knew of Vortigerns demise. He was also very aware of the capable Warlord leading the Walisch, and the soldiers that he led, well trained and well armed.

With that information in mind Hengist had sent out a message for all his Warriors to march North of the river Don and the Humber Estuary. The warriors were to gather at Petuaria ( modern day Brough ).

In May of 462AD, Ambrosius, leaving Uthyr to command the Reserve in Dumnonia, assembles the field army at Deva ( modern Chester ) and starts the five day march to the Don river. He is accompanied by Eldol, the Dux of Gloucester and Gorlois, the Dux of Dumnonia, each with their personal Retinue.

Camping at Manucium ( Manchester ) and Navio ( Brough-on-Noe), Ambrosius leads his army toward the Don. He knows that a major part of Hengists army will be somewhere in the area.

Meanwhile, Hengist has been told by Scouts that the Roman Army is marching East. He also knows the road Ambrosius will be following through the Pennines so decides to try an ambush. This is a place called Maisbelli ( said to be modern day Mexborough).

After a three day march Hengist reaches the area first and deploys his troops. Ambrosius gets wind of the attempted ambush but still marches on. Both sides camp near the intended battlefield. On the eve of battle both opposing Warlords know what is at stake. 


Neither side can back down, the loss of prestige would be to great. It was victory or death!.

The Roman Field Army; 5,400 (54 points).

Ambrosius @ 2 points.

Eldol, Dux of  Glevum (Gloucester )@ 1 point.

1 stand of Glevum Militia archers @ 1point.

Gorlois, Dux of Dumnonia @ 1 point.

I stand of Dumnonian Light Archers @ 1point.

4 stands of Light Roman Cavalry ( spears and javalins ) @ 2 points = 8 points.

12 stands of Auxilliary Infantry @ 2 points = 24 points.

4 stands of Light Infantry Archers @ 1 point = 4 points.

4 stands of Regular Infantry @ 3 points = 12 points.

Note; I use the word Roman to describe the Amorican army as their tactics and equipment were Romanic in origin.


Hengist,s Army; 4,000 ( 40 points ).

Hengist and his Jutes; 1,500 ( 15 points).

Hengist @ 1 point.

6 stands of Warrior Infantry @ 2 points = 12  points.

2 stands of Light Archer Infantry @ 1 point = 2 points.


Octa,s Saxons; 1,300 ( 13 points).

Octa @ 1 point. 

5 stands of Warrior Infantry @ 2 points = 10 point.

2 stands of Light Archer Infantry @ 1 point = 2 points.


Ebissa,s Angles; 1,200 ( 12 points).

5 stands of Warrior Infantry @ 2 points = 10 points.

1 stand of Light Archer Infantry @ 1 point.

Here are the armies laid out for battle;

I've portrayed Eldol and Gorlois as dismounted and representing them and their respective bodyguards but these leaders may well have been on horses.


Here is a map of the battlefield ( conjectural);



Notes for Solo play;

● The Romans retain the Initiative Point for the entire battle.The Romans win any tied results.

● Throw die for each side to see which side is moved first. The entire army can be moved.

● Throw dice for each side to see who fires first. The entire army can fire if able to do so.

● combat is simultaneous.

● The town of Conisborough ( Cunungeburg ? ) cannot be entered.

● Any stands in the Warband army forced off the table will be counted as casualties.

● The game is played for eight Game-Turns.

For a 2 player game;

● The game can be played is normal. However the Romans still retain the initative point for the game.

● The game is played for eight Game-Turns.

● The winner will be the player who looses the least number of stands.


Conjectural notes.

While looking up the details of the area and playing out the battle, something didn't seem quite right. It has been said that the battle was hard fought. As the Roman troops gained the upper hand Hengist retreated to Conisborough near where the castle stands to make his final rally.

The field of battle ( Maisbeli) has recently been identified as Mexborough. Looking on Googlemaps the information says that its a 50 minute walk from Mexborough across the river Don to Conisborough.

After fighting for some time would the men have enough stamina for say, a 25 minute run across a river of unknown depth and turn to face the enemy?, especially if they were chased by Cavalry. Also any troops fleeing a battle would take the route they had previously marched over, in this case the North-east.

I fought the first battle on flat ground. It was a walkover for the Romans. However having looked at the area there is a hill to the East of Mexborough where the River Dearne runs into the Don.

 I do not know if this hill is natural or a waste heap from a former mine in the area. It's shape certainly looks like it could have had a stockaded town on the top. I restated the battle with the hill, giving the Warband army the higher ground.



I reset the battle with the hill to the East and positioned Hengists army in front on the slope. This time, even with the Romans having the Iniative Point throughout the battle it was a much harder contest. Hengist did not enter the town. The gates may well have been locked so he made his last stand there allowing the rest of the remaining warriors including Octa and Ebissa to get away. 

This is just my theory, but you never know ? - - -.

The battle was played out on a 3 foot by 2 foot board. ( 90cm x 60cm )

The figures are from Hat Industries with a few from Miliart and Newline designs. The flat hills are by Brian at Essex Miniatures. The tall hill and stockade sections are scratchbuilt. The trees are by various manufacturers.

The river and track sections are made from thin cardboard. The figure bases are from picture framing cardboard. The round 40mm mdf  bases are from Minibits. The tree bases marking out the wooded area are from S and A Scenics. The two houses are either Peter Pig or Hovels.

Postscript:

At the end of the battle Gorlois entered into close combat with Hengist and captured him. After the battle it was decided in council that Hengist was sentenced to death. He was beheaded and Ambrosius gave Hengist full pagan rights in his burial.

Wednesday, 21 October 2020

The Battle of Ooderen :The Spanish Netherlands, June 31st 1703


The details of this clash of arms is a bit sparse in English sources, so this is my interpretation of the events leading up to this battle. Some of the details could be wrong.

 This battle was one of many in what is known as The Malburian Wars or The War of the Spanish Succession. The British and Dutch were fighting the French. Louis the 14th had sent his army North, to invade the Spanish Netherlands, which roughly equates to the country of Belgium in present times.

The Dutch government had sent their army South  into the Netherlands to try and forestall the French army in its advance. The British General, The Duke of Marlborough had warned General Obdam the Dutch General not to advance to far.

Obdam disregarded the Dukes advise wanting to show that the Dutch did not need the British to give them instructions. At this time the country of Holland was known as The United Provinces.

The French C-in-C, the Duc De Boufflers was no fool and as the Dutch army advanced saw an opportunity to surround it. At Eckeren this manoeuvre came about.

Realising what was happening, Obdam with his army tried to fight his way out of the encirclement. First, he directed an attack against Eckeren  but the French forced the Dutch to retreat. Next, he directed an attack against Hoevenen, but this was not pushed home.

Hoevenen was where the majority of the French Cavalry was stationed. The area consisted of open country. The Dutch Generals realised that their mainly infantry army would be cut to pieces if caught in open country in marching column.

The Dutch Army was camped in enclosed territory ideal for defense but they were surrounded on three sides with their backs to the Scheldt river ( pro: Skeld ).

The Dutch Commander knew there was only one thing he could do; he deserted!!.

Disguising himself as a French Officer, Obdam went South, leaving his Officers and the army in a dire situation. Luckily for the Dutch troops, the second in command, General Slangenburg was made of sterner stuff,.

He realised that the only way out was through Ooderen. When the Scheldt river was at low ebb, the polder (a very large drainage gully ) near the village would be passable.

Even at low tide the drainage ditch and the dike further east would be an obstacle for cavalry so would provide some defence should the Duc De Merode become aware of the Dutch manouvres.

Having decided on a plan General Slangenburg and his fellow General Friesham got the army moving.

The Army of The United Provinces ( Holland)

8,500 foot ( inc; Generals and Artillery) = 8.5 points x  4 = 34 points.

1,500 Horse= 1.5 x 4= 6 points.

1 General ( Slangenburg) @ 2points.

1 General (Friesham) @ 1 point.

3 stands of Cavalry @ 2 points = 6 points.

3 stands of Light artillery @ 1 point = 3points.

2 stands of Grenadier infantry @ 4 points =8 points.

10 stands of Line Infantry @ 2 points = 20 points.


The French "Division" at Ooderen.

9,500 Foot = 9.5 x 4 = 38 points ( inc Generals and Artillery ).

2000 Horse = 2 points x 4 = 8 points.

1 General ( the Duc De Villaroi ) @ 1 point.

2 stands of Heavy Field Guns @ 2points = 4 points.

8 stands of Line Infantry @ 3 points = 24 points.

1 stand of Dismounted Dragoons @ 1 point.

2 Stands of Grenadier Infantry @ 4 points = 8 points.

4 stands of Cavalry @ 2 points = 8 points.

Here is a map of the battle;



The battlefield;


Notes;

The Dutch get the Initiative Point on every  Game-Turn. This is for their bravery born out of desperation and for the French not expecting the Dutch to attack!.

Any stands being forced into the water West of the village bridge will be lost. This was the flood plain of the Scheldt so very deep and soft mud. The left side of the board from the Dutch base edge is river so stands will be lost if they are forced to retire off that side.

Any Dutch stands retiring over the dike will be lost ( they would eventually be caught by the French troops to the East).

The polder East of the Bridge is treated as a river that under the rules can be crossed with penalties.

The winner of the battle after 8 Game-Turns will be the side with the least number of stands lost and/or the Dutch have stands on the bridge at the village. The Dutch have only one way to go. That is North.

The other parts of The French Army didn't take part in the battle. I'm surmising that either Generals Boufflers and Merode assumed that General Villeroi could defeat the Dutch ,or, the acoustics of the area muffled the sound of the battle.

General De Bedmar,s Spanish " Division" was at Wilmarsdonk to the South, but he did not move. I'm assuming that he also thought that Generals Villaroi and Merode would be able to stop the Dutch escaping.

For completeness, here is my interpretation of the remainder of the Franco/ Spanish Army;

The French "Division" at Hoevenen

6,500 horse = 6.5 points x 4 = 26 points.

1 General ( Merode) @ 1 point.

8 stands of Cavalry @ 3 points = 24 points.

1 stand of Mounted Dragoons @ 1 point.


The French "Division " at Eckeren.

11,000 Foot ( inc: Generals and Artillery)= 11 points x 4 = 44 points.

2,000 Horse = 2 points x 4 = 8 points.

1 General, C-in-C ( Boufflers) @1 point.

1 stand of Heavy Artillery @ 2points.

3 stands of Light Artillery @ 1 point = 3 points.

2 stands of Grenadier Infantry @ 4 points = 8 points.

10 stands of Line Infantry @ 3 points = 30 points.

4 stands of Cavalry @ 2 points = 8 points.


The Spanish "Division" at Wilmarsdonk.

8,500 Foot ( inc: Artillery and Generals = 8.5 points x 4 = 34 points. 

1,500 Horse = 1.5 x 4 = 6 points.

1 General ( De Bedmar) @ 1 point.

2 stands of Grenadier Infantry @ 4 points = 8 points.

7 stands of Line Infantry @ 3 points = 21 points.

4 stands of Light Artillery @ 1 point = 4 points.

3 stands of Cavalry @ 2 points = 6 points.

Credits;

I set this battle up on a 2 foot (60cm) x 2 foot (60cm) board as there seem to be very little manoeuvring space according to one Period map I have seen.

The figures are mostly Miniature Figurines with some from Peter Pig and Essex Miniatures. They represent the middle 18th century rather than the earlier Malburian era.

The buildings are from Total Battle Miniatures. The bridge at the village is scratchbuilt, as are the dike sections. The rivers and roads are thin card.

The bases of the figures are made from picture framing card and the round 40mm mdf  bases are from Minibits














 



Sunday, 11 October 2020

The 5th Century in Brittannia : Part 2. Hengist, Horsa and Ambrosius

Once again this is my personal interpretation as a wargamer of events as presented by the historians.

454AD started like most recent years within the Western Roman Empire. Various tribal Elders steeled themselves and their followers for more trouble to come. Everything was in turmoil. The only constant was Aetius, the powerful Roman Warlord, keeping the balance of power in the West after his victory over Atilla at the Catellaunian Fields.

That all came to an end in September of this year when  Aetius was assassinated by a rival jealous of his success. This paved the way for more bloodshed as various Germanic leaders fought for territorial control in Gaul, Hispania and Himlingoje.

The situation in Britannia having been relatively quiet was also about to change. Hengist, leader of the Gewissi ( Jutes) was deep in thought during the Winter of 454. He realised that, with Aetius now dead, he could make a bid for power and wealth in the country.

There was no one who could stop him. The Britons (or "Wallisch) were to divided and to weak. The Wallisch Council in Londene had never ever paid them enough to make up for the Jutish blood shed in their defence.

In early 455AD Hengist and his Brother Horsa made their move. Taking to their ships with their followers, they sailed  North up the East coast in groups. The main group sailed along the Humber and down the river Don. 

Note 28-10-20:
I don’t know if the River Don was navigable by boat it’s entire length at that time. It is possible that Hengist and his warriors had to walk part of the way.



 The one commodity that will bring money lies at Derwent. Not Gold but something  the the Romans prized for the manufacture of their weapons and armour: Lead!. Other groups land at Holderness above the Humber Estuary. From these points, they fan out to raid villages, and smaller settlements.

 The Gewissi have been sailing the rivers and coastline for ten years fighting the Frankish Pirates, The Picts and Scots. They know where they are going.

When the Nobles realise what is happening they are at a loss as to the solution. The only one with the power and influence is Vortigern. He is detested by the Romanised members of the Council for his Scots-Irish background and for employing the Gewissi.

He uses the situation to his advantage. In return for the Council declaring Vortigern as Pendragon ( High King ). Vortigerns son Vortimer is declared as Warleader and he along with his brother Catigern gather 1,500 Picts and Scots-Irish Federated troops  ( using their Fathers connection) with which to oppose the Gewissi.


The first battle takes place at Derwent between Vortimers 1,500 men and the 700 men of Hengists Warband.  (This village is now below water at Ladybower Reservoir)

The Battle of Derwent: Spring 455 AD.

Scots-Irish and Pict Army; 1,500 = 15 points x 2 =30 points.

Vortimer @1 point.
Catigern @ 1 point.
12 stands of Warriors @ 2points = 24 points.
2 stands of Light Cavalry @ 2 points = 4 points.

The Jutes ( Gewissi); 700 = 7 points x 2 = 14 points.

Hengist @ 1 point.
Horsa @ 1 point.
5 stands of Warriors @ 2 points = 10 points.
2 stands of Light Archers @ 1 point = 2 points.


Here is a map of the battlefield ( conjecteral) ;




● The Jutes get the Initiative Point every Game-Turn.
● The Jutes move first on every Game-Turn.
● The winner after 8 Game-Turns is the Player with the lowest number of stands lost.
● The Jutes win if they still have 4 stands remaining at the end of the game.
● The river Derwent can only be crossed via the bridge. Any stands entering the river will be lost.
● The hills to the North cannot be entered. The battlefield can only be exited via the East, West or South. The River Don is to the East of the battlefield.

In the historical and hard fought battle, Hengist is beaten and he and his men are pursued back to his ships on the Don

From there he, and his men sail back to Thanet. Having beaten Hengist, part of  Vortimers Army go against other groups of Gewissi in Holderness and drive them back to their ships.


It takes three days sailing for Hengist and all his men to reach Thanet. He knows that Vortimer will come after him. He has fifteen days to prepare his remaining force and he knows he will be outnumbered.

Realising where they would go, Vortimer and Catigern gather up their Army and march the 250 miles South-East toward Thanet, receiving supplies in London on the way. Vortimer looses men on the march due to straggling, wounds and desertion. Some of the warriors are not prepared to be away from their villages in Rheged, Gwynedd and Powys.


Fifteen days later, two opposing battle lines faced each other at a fording point on the River Medway at Episford ( modern Aylesford).

 Hengist had been told by his Scouts that the Walisch Army is not as large as he thought it would be. Hengist takes a gamble and leads his men out for battle.


Hengist and his Jutes ( Gewissi) 700 = 7 points x 2 = 14 points.

Hengist @1 point.
Horsa @ 1 point.
5 stands of Warrior infantry @ 2 points = 10 points.
2 stands of Light Archer skirmishes @ 1 point = 2 points.

Vortimer and his Scots-Irish 800 = 8 points x 2 = 16 points.

Vortimer @ 1 point.
Catigern @ 1 point.
4 stands of Warrior Infantry @ 2 points = 8 points.
2 stands of Light Archer Skirmishers @ 1 point = 2 points.
2 stands of Light Cavalry. @ 2 points = 4 points. 

The Scots-Irish get the Initiative Point every Game-Turn.
The Scots-Irish move first on every Game-Turn.
The Scots-Irish fire first on every Game-Turn.
After 8 Game-Turns the side loosing the least number of stands is the winner.


 

Once again Vortimer and Catigern go on the attack and, after a stiff fight drove the Gewissi back. This time the Gewissi (Jutes) were harried back to Thanet.

Hengist and his remaining men were given no time to make a stand. They had to take to their ships to save their lives. During the course of this protracted skirmish, Vortimer and Horsa lost their lives.

With the Jutes now banished from Britannia, the remainder of the Picts and Scots-Irish army under Catigern is encamped near London. Vortigern is now undisputed master of the round table Council of Britannia. 

But Hengist wants revenge. Not only for being beaten by Vortigerns army, but also for the death of his brother.

In the following year 456AD, Hengist returns to Thanet. This time he is accompanied by his two sons Octa and Ebissa alongside 4,000 battle hardened Jutes, Angles and Saxons in 40 ships. In Gaul the Saxons are gradually being forced out of their new territory by the Franks. 
This time Hengist is determined to stay, so spends the rest of the year consolidating his position.

Vortigern needs time to assemble his Army that has scattered back to their various settlements, he has no forces large enough to face Hengist immediately.
To add to his problems Vortigern hears rumours of an army being assembled in Amorica in order to come to Britannia.

457AD finds both opposing armies once again  assembled for battle on the ford at Aylesford.



Hengists Army: 4,000 (40 points).

Hengists Jutes; 1,500.

Hengist @ 1 point.
6 stands of Warrior Infantry @ 2 points = 12 points.
2 stands of Light Archer Infantry @ 1 point = 2 points.

Octa,s Saxons; 1,300.

Octa @ 1 point.
5 stands of Warrior Infantry @ 2 points = 10 points.
2 stands of Light Archer Skirmishers @ 1 point = 2 points.

Ebbisa and the Angles; 1,200.

Ebissa @ 1 point.
5 stands of Warrior infantry @ 2 points = 10 points.
1 stand of Light Archer infantry @ 1 point.

Catigern,s Army;

The Scot-Irish;
Catigern @ 1 point.
8 stands of Warrior Infantry = 2 points = 16 points.
1 stand of Light Infantry Archers = 1 point.

The Picts;
Pascent @ 1 point.
2 stands of Light Cavalry @ 2 points = 4 points.
7 stands of Light  Infantry skirmishers @ 1 point = 7 points.



Note; The Medway river can only be crossed via the Fording point.
●Both sides will throw a D12 at the start of each Game-Turn to decide which side has the Iniative and moves first.
●The battle will last for 8 Game-Turns.
● The winner of the game is the side will the lower number of stands lost.



In the historical battle, Catigern,s army is defeated,

Note; 11-11-20. It is said that Catigern died at this 2nd battle of Aylesford and is buried there.

Vortigern now knew for sure that an Amorican army would arrive eventually. Therefore he decides to attempt peace talks with Hengist hoping he can use the Germanic troops as Federates.

Hengist arranges a Banquet for Vortigern and 300 Wallisch nobles. The Gemanic warriors called everyone in Britannia " Wallisch" meaning "foreigners".However this time Hengist wants nothing less than absolute power. As Bretwalda,or Warlord, Hengist has to award his followers with gifts and lands that he has promised them.

To that end he ensures that each British Noble has a warrior sitting next to him. Each warrior is armed with a concealed knife. At a given signal, Hengist's men kill virtually all the Britons. Vortigern is taken hostage. In exchange for his life and eventual release he gives Hengist Eastsex, Southsex and Middlesex, along with Londene, Wincestre, Lindum and Eboricum. Arbeia on the Eastern end of Hadrians wall is also given to Hengist. 

Saxons, Jutes and Angles now spread out across Lloegyr taking slaves and land. The remaining Romano-Britons are in full retreat. Most head toward Dumnonia and the Southern coast of Powys around the Severn Estuary. Some of the Picts retreat Northward toward Bana on the Wall along with the Scots Irish. 

Vortigern, now totally discredited  by his actions retreats to his fortress of Dinas Emrys in Northern Gwynedd along with 1,000  Pictish and Scots-Irish warriors of his personal guard.
 
Note; Vortigern,s remaining  son, Pascent is not heard of at this point. I am surmising that he went either to Ireland or North into Western Caledonia.

By 458AD British Nobles with their followers are arriving in Amorica ( Brittany) with stories of the disaster unfolding in Lloegyr. Aldwyr, the High King of Amorica decided it was time to act. He chooses Ambrosius and his brother Uthyr the two remaining sons of Constantine the 3rd as Commanders of the Army. Both had been trained in Roman military matters and both had gained experience in fighting the Franks and Alans.

In the Spring of 459AD Ambrosius and his brother Uthyr land at Totnes in Dumnonia along with 8,300 regular troops. The Romano-Britons in the area gather to the standards. 



The first mission for Ambrosius is to capture the Usurper Vortigern. He takes half the army North into Gwynedd to attack Vortigerns fortress ( Dinas Emrys). Using siege techniques and fire missiles the fortress is destroyed. Vortigern dies during the attack everyone assuming he has died in the flames.

From then on and during 460AD, Ambrosius takes his army through Gwynedd and Powys driving out the Scots-Irish settlers. By the end of that year after a successful campaign Ambrosius is declared Pendragon (Warlord) of Britannia, at Woodchestre (near modern Stroud in Gloucestershire.)

In 461AD Ambrosius and his brother Uthyr start planning operations against the Gemanic invaders.

Army of Ambrosius; 8,500.

The Field Army; 5,200

Ambrosius @ 2 points.
Eldol ( Dux of Gloucester)  @ 1 point.
Gorlois  ( Dux of Dumnonia )@ 1 point.


4 stands of Light cavalry @ 2 points = 8 points.
4 stands of Regular Infantry @ 3 points = 12 points.
12 stands of Auxilliary Infantry @ 2 points = 24 points.
4 stands of Light Archers @ 1 point = 4 points.

Reserve in Dumnonia; 3,300.
Uthyr @ 1 point.

4 stands of Light Cavalry @ 2 points = 8 points.
8 stands of Auxilliary Infantry @ 2 points = 16 points.
4 stands of Light Archers @ 1 point = 4 points.
4 stands of Light Ballista Field Artillery @ 1 point = 4 points.

Notes;
The Roman Cavalry I use at this point in the history do not have body armour and ride unarmoured horses.

Although all Regular infantry in this era were known as Peditum, I use the words " Regular" and " Auxilliary" to separate those troops wearing mail body armour and those without, this being the latter.

Credits;
Nearly all the soldiers are Hat Industries. The wagons,mules and civilians are from the Ceaser Miniatures Roman Train boxes. The Eagles are scratch built. 

The regular infantry standing behind the Generals are Newline Designs Roman Infantry. The boat crew are Emhar Viking crew.
The ship's are scratchbuilt. The buildings are from Hovels and Peter Pig.
The square bases are picture frame cardboard. The round 40mm mdf bases are from Minibits.


Tuesday, 22 September 2020

Battle of Hohenfriedburg : Silesia 4th June 1745.

 Maria Theresa the Empress of Austria had previously signed a peace treaty with the Prussian Monarch Frederick. This was so, that she could deal with French and Spanish attacks elsewhere on her territories.

In 1745 the Empress decided to renew hostilities with the Prussians. The Austrian Army in Bohemia was set in motion again, Eastward toward Silesia. The Empress was determined to regain the Province.

The command of the Austrian army was given to Prince Charles of Lorraine who, having nearly beaten the Prussians before was considered the most experienced. He was also a Brother-in-Law to the Empress bringing the stamp of Royalty to the position.

The early hours of the 4th June 1745 found King Frederick of Prussia atop a hill near the town of Striegau staring West, watching the Austrian army as it lumbered from the Bohemian Hills onto the undulating open ground across the river Striegau from where he stood.

Watching  the Austrian Army settle, the King decided on a surprise attack starting with the Austrian left. The attack went awry from the start.



In the first instance the Austrian line was longer than Frederick thought so the Prussian troops came against the line rather than around it. Secondly, in having to cross the Striegau, the Prussian troops came into battle piecemeal.

As the Saxon allies posted on the left of the Austrian Army came under attack this alerted the Austrian commanders and the Army was bought into position----.



The Austrian-Saxon Army.

Austria: 40,000 = 40 points.

1 General ( Prince Charles of Lorraine) @ 1 point.

1 General ( Berlichingen) @ 1 point.

3 stands of Light artillery @ 1point = 3 points.

2 stands of Grenadier infantry @ 4 points = 8 points.

6 stands of Line Infantry @ 3 points= 18 points.

1 stand of Grenzer Skirmishers @ 1 point.

4 Stands of Cavalry @ 2 points = 8 points.

The Saxon Army;

1 General ( Johann Adolf 2nd, Duke of Sachsen Weissenfals) @ 1 point.

2 stands of Light Artillery @ 1 point = 2 points.

1 stand of Grenadier Infantry @ 4 points.

4 stands of Line Infantry @ 2 points = 8 points.

2 stands of Cavalry @ 2 points.

--------------------------"------------------------

The Prussian Army;

42,000 Infantry ( including Artillery and Generals) = 42 points.

15,000 Cavalry = 15 points.

2,000 Hussar Light Cavalry @ 2 points.

Comprising;

1 General-in-Chief ( King Frederick 2nd ) @ 3 points.

1 General ( Du Moulin) @ 1 point.

1 General (Nassau) @ 1 point.

2 stands of Grenadier Infantry @ 4 points = 8 points.

7 stands of Line Infantry @ 3 points = 21 points.

2 stands of Heavy Artillery @ 2 points = 4 points.

4 stands of Light Artillery @ 1 point = 4 points.

1 stand of Cavalry ( Bayreuth Dragoons ) @ 3 points.

6 stands of Cavalry @ 2 points = 12 points.

2 stands of Light Hussars @ 1 point = 2 points.

Here are the Armies laid out;


 Special Rules;

● The Solo Game;

● The Prussian army will get the initiative point on every Game-Turn.

● The Prussian Army moves first on every Game-Turn.

● For the first four Game-Turns, each side will have a 12 sided die thrown for it. The result on each die shows the number of stands to be moved in each Army. This reflects the lack of organised movement within the opposing armies in the early stages of the battle.

● From Game-turns 5 to 8, all the stands can be moved in each army starting with the Prussian army first

● For the first 4 Game-Turns, each side has a 12 sided die thrown for them in the Firing phase of a game turn. The higher scoring side fires first. From Game- Turns 5 to 8, the Prussians fire first.

Here is a map of the battle;


The 2 Player game;

● The Prussian player has the initiative point for the entire game.

●For the first 4 Game-Turns. Each player throws a 12 sided die to see how many stands they can move. The Prussian player moves first.

● For Game-Turns 1 to 4, each side throws a 12 sided die to see who fires first within each Game-Turn. The higher score fires first.

● From Game-Turns 5 to 8 each side can move any stands that can be moved. The Prussian player moves first and fires first. All stands of both sides that are able to fire can do so.

● The Prussian player fires first on every Game-Turn.

● Order of combat is decided by the Prussian Player.

Well, that's it. The figures in the photos are a mix of Miniature Figurines and Peter Pig. The flags are hand painted on masking tape. The buildings are from Total Battles Miniatures. The river and roads are thin card. The round mdf bases are from Minibits.
The squares bases are cut from picture  mounting cardboard.









Saturday, 12 September 2020

Battle of Antietam 17th September 1862.



Having managed to take Harper's Ferry, General Lee was informed that his order 191 had been obtained by the Union high command. Lee quickly realised he needed to gather his scattered forces.

Daniel Harvey Hill,s Division had already held up the Union advance at Turners Gap. Now Lee, realising that his supply route could be compromised, put the army on the move  back to the Maryland border and into Virginia.

The Commander in Chief of the Union Army was George Brinton McClellan, " Little Mac" to the troops, with whom he was highly popular. As the Confederate army trudged West along the Boonsboro Tunpike, Generals Lee and Longstreet realised that they would have to turn and face the Union army or run the risk of being attacked while on the march.

Moving across a meandering waterway known  locally as Antietam Creek, Lee saw that the  local farmland with undulating ground and woodland would be an ideal location for a defensive battle. As the Confederate army took up positions East of Sharpsburg, there was an additional element of danger for Lee's Army.

 Further West beyond Sharpsburg was the Potomac River. There was only one crossing place. Should the Union Army win the day the Confederate Army would disintegrate 
trying to cross while retreating.

There was one person in the Union Army who could give the Confederates an edge in the coming battle. That was George McClellan himself. General McClellan was very cautious. He had seven Corps with which to overpower the Confederate Army but on the day, only four were used. Each Corps commander was left to conduct the battle in his own way, and none of the Union attacks were coordinated.

McClellan was great at logistics and did an excellent job of organising the Army of the Potomac but as events were to prove he could not command an army in battle.

It is of note that the men of Edwin Summers Corps were new recruits and on two occasions in the heat of the battle fired into the backs of their own men. 


Regardless of the colour of the uniform, the Generals and soldiers of both sides did not realise they would be unwitting participants in one of the bloodiest battles of the war so far.....

The Union Army;

C-in-C George McClennan. ( not present).

1st Corps; 8,500 = 8.5 points x 2 = 17 points.

1 General ( Joseph Hooker ) = 1 point.
6 stands of 2nd class Line Infantry @ 2 points = 12 points.
1 stand of skirmishes @ 2 points.
2 stands of Light Horse Artillery @ 1 point = 2 points.

12th Corps; 7,500 = 7.5 points x 2 = 15 points.

1 General ( Joseph Mansfield ) = 1 point.
5 stands of 2nd class infantry @ 2 points = 10 points.
1 stand of skirmishes @ 2 points.
2 stands of Light Horse Artillery @ 1 point = 2 points.


2nd Corps; 10,500 = 10.5 points x 2 = 21 points.

1 General ( Edwin "Bull" Sumner ) = 1 point.
8 stands of 2nd class Line Infantry @ 2 points = 16 points.
2 stands of Heavy Artillery @ 2 points = 4 points.

9th Corps; 12,000 = 12 points x 2 = 24 points.

1 General ( Ambrose Burnside) = 1 point.
9 stands of 2nd class Line Infantry @ 2 points = 18 points.
1 stand of skirmishes @ 1 point.
2 stands of Heavy Artillery @ 2 points = 4 points.


The Confederate Army; 34,000 x 2= 68 points.

C-in-C Robert E. Lee (present) @ 3 points.

Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson,s Corps; 9,500 = 9.5 points x 2= 19 points.

1 General (Jackson) @ 2 points.
2 stands of Heavy Artillery @ 2 points = 4 points.
3 stands of skirmish infantry @ 1 point = 3 points.
3 stands of 2nd class Line Infantry @ 2 points = 6 points.
1 stand of 1st class Line Infantry ( Hoods Texans) @ 3 points.

James Longstreets Corps;

General Longstreet @ 2 points.

Daniel Harvey Hill,s Division.4,500= 4.5 points x 2=9 points.

1 general (Hill) @ 1 point.
3 stands of 2nd class Line Infantry @ 2 points = 6 points.
2 stands of Light Horse Artillery @ 1 point = 2 points.

David R. Jones Division. 5,000 =5 points x 2=10 points.

1 General (Jones) @ 1point.
4 stands of 2nd class Line Infantry @ 2 points = 8 points.
1 stand of Light Horse Artillery @ 1 point.

1st reinforcement;

Lafayette McLaw,s Division. 3,000=3 points x 2=6 points.

1 General (McLaws) @ 1point.
2 stands of 2nd class Line Infantry @ 2 points = 4 points.
1 stand of skirmish infantry @ 1 point.

Richard H. Anderson,s Division. 5,000 =5 points x 2 =10 points.

1 General (Anderson) @ 1point.
4 stands of 2nd class Line Infantry @ 2 points = 8 points.
1 stand of Light Horse Artillery @ 1 point.

2nd reinforcement; 

Ambrose Powell Hill,s Light Division. 4,500=4.5 points x 2=9 points.

1 General (Hill) @ 1 point.
3 stands of 2nd class Line Infantry @ 2 points = 6 points.
1 stand of skirmish infantry @ 1 point.
1 stand of Light Horse Artillery @ 1 point.

Here is a view of the battlefield.



Here is a map of the battle;



 Notes on the battle;

Solo Play;

To keep the battle within eight turns, the following sequence is recommended;

1st  Game-Turn) Only the Union 1st Corp moves this Game Turn. The Confederate Daniel Harvey Hill only moves this Game Turn.  The Union army has the initiative and fires first. All stands of both sides can fire if in range. Use the fire rules for the 2 player game.

Game-Turn 2) The Union 1st and 12 Corps moves first only in this Game Turn. Jackson and Harvey Hill's Divisions only move this Game Turn moving second. The Union army has the initiative and can fire first. All stands of both sides can fire if in range.

Game-Turn 3) As in the previous Turn, the Union 1st and 12th Corp moves first only.
Jackson and Harvey Hills Divisions only move second. The Union army has the initiative and can fire first. All stands of both sides can fire if within range.

Game-Turn 4) The Union 1st, 12th and 2nd Corps can move on this game Turn. The Confederates Jackson, Harvey Hill, Jones, Mclaw and Anderson's Divisions move second The Union army has the initiative and fires first. All stands of both sides can fire if within range.

Game-Turn 5) The same order as Game Turn 4.

Game-Turn 6) Both sides have a die rolled for them to see which side gets the initiative and moves first. All the Union army can be moved as can the Confederate army. Both sides have a die rolled for them to see which side fires first. Use the fire and combat rules for the 2 player game.

Game-Turn 7) As game-Turn 6.

Game-Turn 8) As Game-Turn 7.

This finishes the Game. The side with the lower losses in Stands is the winner.

The system used here is a bit different from the normal solo rules. This is a big battle and using the above movement sequence ensures all the Stands come into play historically.



The Two Player game.

Game-Turn 1) Only the Union 1st Corp is moved this Game Turn and has the initiative. On the Confederate side only Daniel Harvey Hills Division can be moved. The normal Fire sequence takes place.
The Game is played as normal  from Game-Turn 2 onward.

The Confederate  Ambrose Powell Hills Division can only enter the game on Game-Turn 5.
However that does not stop you playing the battle out in your own style.

The Sunken Lane;
This is a Trench, and is covered by the rules for Trenches.

Nicodemus Hill.
Stands cannot be moved on or off Nicodemus Hill on the front face. The stands can only be moved via the squares adjacent to the West Wood.

Antietam Creek can only be crossed via the bridge.

Rail Fences ; These do not count as cover

Ranges of weapons;

All muskets are rifled ; 3 squares.
Artillery; most of the artillery at this battle were either Napoleons or 3inch rifled. Both  had the same range so all artillery is 4 squares.

Well, this is my interpretation of the battle. The figures are 15mm Peter Pig and Miniature Figurines. Most of the Generals are Peter Pig.

The flags are from Peter Pig. as are nearly all the buildings. The Dunker church is a Peter Pig building with a cocktail stick cross although I think the Company also has a church amongst its building range.

The split rail fence was made by MBM Scenery in 10mm.

Some of the hills were made by Brian at Essex Miniature, and some were home made especially Nicodemus Hill.

The roads, river and cornfield are of thin card.
The trees were from various manufactures.

Finally the bases are 40mm square cardboard mounting card. The round Command bases are 40mm mdf from Minibits.






 








Tuesday, 25 August 2020

The 5th Century in Britannia (401 to 500 AD) part 1.The Rise of Vortigern.

Many historians past and present, have done an immense amount of work in an attempt to make sense of the limited and sometimes jumbled history of the 5th century in Britain. All the information that they have collected is valid up to the present and has been made available to the public over the years.

Thanks to the hard work of these authors, wargamers like myself can make choices as to which thread of history to follow. The following article is my own interpretation of events presented by the historians.

This is the point in the history of Late Roman Britain where the situation really started to change for the people. As if the raiding and constant warfare was,nt enough to cope with, the taxes levied on the population were getting worse!
( some things in history never change!).


Basically, each city or town within the Roman Empire had a council called the Curiales. Being wealthy they were personally responsible for all bills incurred by the City. From the 4th Century onward membership of a City Council became more financially ruinous.
As a result, many counsellors try to escape this situation by joining the Army, the Government, the Church or by gaining the position of Senator.

In the 5th Century the governing of towns and provinces gradually fell to individuals who had managed to engineer the situation to their advantage. These were Senators, Magnates, Military Officers, Bishops and Imperial Office holders. A character by the name of Vortigern became a member of this group.

In 401AD, Hadrians Wall lost its garrison troops as General Stilicho ordered all troops back to Gaul. Having already suffered large scale incursions, the Rhine frontier finally collapsed in the winter of 406AD.

When the river Rhine froze completely, this allowed thousands of tribespeople to cross into Gaul. The tribes that crossed the Rhine were Vandals, Alans, Seubi, Quadi,Bergundians, Alemanni and Saxons, adding to the Franks who had already been settled by the Romans in Gaul. The sea trade to Britannia dwindled almost to nothing.


By 407AD, the supply of money from Rome to Britannia had stopped. For the last time, the regular troops in the Province rose in revolt. The troops declared Constantine ( a Roman Prefect ) as Emperor. He became Constantine the 3rd.

Constantine gathered virtually all the remaining troops including the federated Cohorts and, using the remaining ships of the Navy, heads to Gesoriacum ( Boulogne).

Apart from the personal troops of the Magnates, there are no regular forces to go up against the raiding parties of Picts, Scotti, Franks and Frisians who are now raiding freely into the countryside. The Picts and Scotti are now starting to settle in areas of Northern Brittania just South of the Wall and in areas of North-Western Wales. One of the largest forts on the Wall ( Banna ) becomes the main fortress of a Scottish King.



By 409AD, all the Roman magistrates loyal to Constantine had been expelled by the local councillors of the town's and cities. Those that remained still regarded themselves as Roman and still follow the Christian religion. However the Province was slowly fragmenting into small Kingdoms. Local leaders and their people were abandoning the towns, villages and villas and moving to the hill forts their ancestors were driven from by Roman invasion.

Londinium still just about functions as an administrative hub. Those with power try to come to an agreement as to how to function but power politics are in play and self interest is to the fore. An embassy is sent to the Emperor Honorius for aid but he tells the Britons that they must look to their own defence.

On the continent in 410AD, Rome is sacked by Alaric and his Visigoths. Then in 411AD Constantine is captured and killed by the Emperor Honorius.

If you draw a line from the head of the the Severn Estuary diagonally North- East across Britannia to the head of the river Humber, the area South of that line was becoming know as Lloegyr ( pronounced Low-ee-jer).


This area plus that on the South coast of Wales around Glevum was still controlled by the Britons. The area North of this line was now controlled by the Picts and Scots.

By 418AD the British treasury was empty so any money in circulation was controlled by the new Nobility. Food barter becomes the main currency of the population. Some who had lost lands and their property have taken ships from Dumnonia (Devon and Cornwall combined) and headed for Amorica (Brittany).

By 425AD Vortigern re-enters the story. He was a Prefect of Gloui ( Gloucester) or Glevum. As part of his rise to power, he married Savira the daughter of a previous usurper, Magnus Maximus by his second marriage. Vortigern inherited extensive lands. They had one daughter, Scothnoe, and three sons; Vortimer, Catigern and Pascent.

Vortigern himself is of  Hibernian descent ( Goidelic). In 436AD, he seals a pact with the High King of Hibernia by marrying his daughter Scothnoe to the High King,s son Federmid. By now Vortigern is the most powerful Noble ( Equites= Knight ) of the round table council of Britain.His personal hearth guard is composed of Scotts-Irish and Pictish warriors.

 Although resented by the Romano-Christian members of the council Vortigerns position is unassailable, as the Imperial Court is no longer sending any Officials to Britannia.

The raiding by Scots and Pictish warbands has lessened into Romano-British territory but the raids by Frankish and Frisian Pirates continued.
By 432AD, on the Continent the Magister Militum Aetius ( pro: A-E-shush) is in contention with Boniface as to who becomes leader of the Western Roman Empire.

In Amorica ( Brittany) The local Roman magistrates were gradually being ejected by the dispossessed Nobility arriving from Britannia who felt let down by the Roman Senate. Amorica has also become home to Bandits, deserters and peasants made homeless by the barbarian invasions.


 Many soldiers from the failed coup attempts are also there. Amongst them are two surviving sons of Constantine 3rd; Ambrosius and Uthyr. The eldest son Constans was killed when his father was taken. The Amorican inhabitants have many tribal links to South Western Britain going back to Pre-Roman times.

By 437AD, Aetius is in control of the Western Empire. He is not very happy about Amorica becoming an independent state, so he, with his General Litorius decides to invade the territory to bring it under his control. Amorica is ideal defensive territory, being heavily wooded hill country.

Soon the campaign gets bogged down and Aetius already having problems elsewhere gives King Goer and his Alannic troops the task

It is now 440AD. Back in Britannia the Round Table is desperate to solve the problem of the seaborne raids and convince Vortigern to send an embassy to the Jutes of Northern Denmark.
( Jutes=Gutes; Latin=Geuisse=Gewissi). These troops had been to Britain before and were well known for their seafaring abilities.

By now Vortigern has complete power but in order to be seen " as a council member" he acceded to the request. The next year ( 441AD), The Jutish leader Hengist arrives with his brother Horsa along with three ships of men (240 warriors?). They land at the isle of Thanet and make camp there.
At the start, the presence of the Jutes with their ships reduces the raids but not enough to stop them completely.

Hengist convinces Vortigern and the Council that he needs more more men. In the Spring of 442 another 16 ships of Jutes arrive at Thanet (1,280 men). For the next ten years from 443AD until 453AD the Jutes effectively end the Pirate raids.

With the Gewissi now employed as a private army by the Noble round table, life takes on a relative calmness but as the year 454 dawned this was all about to change------.



Monday, 27 July 2020

Battle of Fontenoy: The Austrian Netherlands 1st May 1745.

Prior to this battle, the French Army had not done very well in Northern Italy. It was decided in Council that the Austrian Netherlands being on France's Northern border would be an easier target. The King of France, Louis 15th was also keen to campaign with his army so this would allow him to do so without being in harm's way much to the relief of his Generals.

The French army at this time was being led by possibly the best General of the age; Maurice of Saxony. He knew where the Allied army was likely to advance South. Therefore knowing that his troops were not at their best when going toe-to-toe with the English, he set up a killing field to channel the allied attack.

If the French army were being led by the best, the Allied Army had one of the worst. The Duke of Cumberland was the son of King George 2nd, King of Britain and Elector of Hanover. He did bring in some much needed improvements to the life of his troops, however his grasp of tactics was limited to leading his men into the heaviest enemy fire and keeping them there!


The British army at this point in time was not the finely honed force it would become under the Duke of Wellington. It was, when on the Continent, an auxiliary force to the Hanovarian Army. The Duke of Cumberland was in command of the Pragmatic Army because his social rank. The Pragmatic Army was the name given to the nation's allied to Austria, these being ; Hanover ( with Britain ), Holland,( at this time known as The United Provinces ) and Piedmont-Sardinia.

The opposition consisted of Prussia, France/Spain ( a family alliance ) along with Bavaria.

The Pragmatic Army.

The British;
16,000 foot inc Artillery and Generals.
16 points x 2 = 32 points.
4,500 horse = 4.5 points x 2 = 9 points.

C-in-C Duke of Cumberland = 1 point.
General John Ligonier = 1 point.
2 stands of Grenadier Infantry @ 4 points = 8 points.
5 stands of Line Infantry @ 3 points = 15 points.
2 stands of Scots light Infantry Skirmishers @ 2 points = 4 points.
2 stands of Light Artillery @ 1 point = 2 points.
3 stands of Dragoon Cavalry @ 3 points = 9 points.

The Hanoverian Brigade.

4,000 foot inc Artillery and Generals.
4 points x 2 = 8 points.
2,000 horse = 2 points x 2 = 4 points.

General Zastrow = 1 point.
1 stand of Light Artillery @ 1 point.
2 stands of Line Infantry @ 3 points = 6 points.
2 stands of Lìght Dragoons @ 2 points = 4 points.

The Dutch Army ( also known as the United Provinces ).

22,000 foot ìnc Artillery and Generals.
22 points x 2 = 44 points.
3,000 Horse = 3 points x 2 = 6 points.

General Karl August, Prince of Waldecķ @ 1 point.
General Constrom @ 1 point.
2 stands of Grenadier Ìnfantry @ 4 points = 8 points.
10 stands of Line Infantry @ 3points = 30 points.
4 stands of Light Artillery @ 1 point = 4 points.
3 stands of Light Dragoon Cavalry @ 2 points = 6 points.

The Austrian Netherlands Brigade.

1,500 Horse = 1.5 points x 2 = 3 points ( inc a General ).
500 foot = 0.5 points x 2 = 1 points.

General Count Lothar Konigsegg = 1point.
1 stand of  Light Dragoon Cavalry = 2 points.
1 stand of Militia Line Infantry = 1 point.


The French Army.

32,000 foot inc Artillery and Generals.
32 points x 2 = 64 points.
14,000 cavalry.
14 points x 2 = 28 points.

C-in-C General Maurice De Saxe @ 3 points.
General Vauguyon @ 1 point.
General Lutteaux @ 1 point.

3 stands of Grenadier Infantry @ 4 points = 12 points.
11 stands Line Infantry @ 3 points = 33 points.
3 stands Light Infantry Skirmishers @ 2 points = 6 points.

4 stands of Heavy Artillery @ 2 points = 8 points.

8 stands of Line Dragoon Cavalry @ 3 points = 24 points.
2 stands of Light Dragoon Cavalry @ 2 points = 4 points.

Here is a map of the battle;



Here is the armies laid out;



Notes;

● The ground in front of the British/ Hanovarians sloped up toward the French position. It did not seem to make any difference to the movement so I left it flat.

● The French troops facing the Dutch troops were positioned behind a raised track which ran between Anthoing and Fontenoy. As with the British, it didn't affect the battle in any way so, once again I left it flat.

● King Louis 15th was present at the battle but he did not take command.

● The French Artillery cannot move. If any model gets a "move-back" result from fire or combat, 2 points will be removed from the die roll of each gun model firing back during the same Game-Turn.

● The defense works are treated as trenches. Stands positioned behind them get cover from fire. In combat, both sides use the normal rules.

● The Duke of Cumberland dismounted to lead the British Infantry attack. The British player can have a dismounted version of Cumberland if desired. The model will move at infantry speed.  The Duke ignored advice from his Generals about the redoubt in the woods of Barry!.


● If any British stand has to move back as a result of Fire while the army is positioned on the board edge, the stand is removed!.


● Initial Moves;

On the British side, only the Dutch army moves on the first Game-Turn. From the second Game-Turn onward the game is played as normal.

The Solo Game;

On the British side, only the Dutch army is moved for the first two Game-Turns. From the third Game Turn onward, the British Player uses two thirds of their points for the British/ Hanovarian group first. This is because the Dutch attack was not pushed home.

CREDITS.

The figures are mostly Miniature Figurines supplemented with Peter Pig and Essex miniatures. There are also a stand of Hallmark pioneers. The coach in the bottom corner is from Essex.


The defense works are from a company called Last Man Last Bullet, and supplemented by sections from the Fire and Sword company.

The buildings are from Total Battle Miniatures.

The little supply waggon and the tent base is from Peter Pig.

All the items listed are 15mm and the interpretation of the battle is my own. The flags are hand painted by myself on masking tape.

Tuesday, 30 June 2020

Battle of Fraustadt; 3rd February 1706 : Western Poland.

On a cold February morning in 1706, two armies faced each other across a  frozen plain. Facing East, a combined army of Saxon and Russian troops in a prepared position.

Facing West, a much smaller but very determined army of Swedish infantry and cavalry. There were no artillery pieces amongst these formations as their General, Rehnskoild had decided on a very rapid advance.

The two armies differed in composition. The Swedish army had all the cavalry and very little infantry. The Saxons along with their Russian allies had the infantry and guns, but very few cavalry.

Why was this?. Further East, the Swedish army led by their King, Charles 12th, besieged the Russian held town of Grodno. He had most of his infantry with him. The Saxon commander King Augustus " The Strong" had taken most of his cavalry in an attempt to break the siege.

General Schulenburg, the Russo- Saxon General left Saxony to attack what he thought would be a very weak Swedish battle group. On that cold February morning he had a very rude awakening.

Rather than retreating, that weak Swedish army led by a very resolute General had decided to attack!!

This is the opposing forces;



Saxony-Russia.

10,300 Saxon Infantry and artillerymen.
2,700 Saxon Cavalry.
40 Field Guns.
5,000 Russian Infantry.

Total: 18,000 = 18 points x 3 = 54 points.

The Saxons;
8 stands of Line Muskets @ 2 points each = 16 points.
2 stands of Pikemen @ 3points each = 6 points.
4 stands of Heavy Field Guns @ 2 points each = 8 points.
4 stands of Line Cavalry @ 2 points each = 8 points.
1 General ( Schulenburg ) @ 1 point.

The Russians;
4 stands of Line Muskets @ 2 points = 8 points.
1 stand of Pikemen @ 2 points = 2 points.
1 stand of Grenadier Muskets @ 3 points.
1 General ( Goltz ) @ 1 point.

The Swedish Army;

6,000 Cavalry.
4,600 Infantry.

Total; 10,600 = 10.6 points x 3 = 32 points ( rounded up).

1 General Rehnskoild @ 2 points.
1 General Von Krassow @ 1 point.
1 General Hummerhelm @ 1 point.

6 stands of Line Muskets @ 1 point each = 6 points.
2 stands of Pikemen @ 3 points each = 6 points.
8 stands of Line Cavalry @ 2 points each = 16 points,

Here is a map of the battle;


NOTES:
With a battle such as this where there are a disparity of forces special rules have to be introduced. The circumstances themselves played a part also.

● The Swedish stands are moved first on every Game-Turn.

●The Swedish Army gets the Initiative Point every Game-Turn.

● On every Game-Turn every Stand of the Swedish Army can be moved if desired. Before the Saxon-Russian Army can move, a 12 sided die is thrown. The result of the throw is the number of stands within the Saxon-Russian army that can be moved including Command stands. The type of stand to be moved is at the discretion of the player.

This rule is used because, during the actual battle there no clear command decisions being made within the allied army.

● The only stands that cannot be moved are the Russian Guns. If a gun stand suffers a " Move Back" as a result of firing it is given a "cannot fire" marker ( or a marker of any description ) which remains in play for that Game-Turn. If the Gun Stand suffers a "Move-Back as a result of Combat, it is removed from the table altogether. ( the crew have been killed and the gun dragged out of position).

● During the Firing Phrase of every Game-Turn, the Swedish Army always fires first, with every stand that can fire. The Saxon-Russian Army has a 12 sided die thrown for it. The result will show the number of stands that can fire. Any Artillery stands that are to fire are included in that number.

● Combat is played out as normal. The Swedish horses did not have shoes fitted so a number of them fell over on the icy ground during the advance,but this did not seem to effect their attack.

Removing a Defence-work;


The front of the Russo-Saxon army was cover by sections of Chevau-de-Frise. If a Swedish infantry stand is adjacent to a section at the start of a Game-Turn with no enemy stand adjacent to the same section, the Swedish stand can try to remove it.
Roll a 6sided die. If the result is 3,4,5 or 6 the section of defence work can be removed.

Final thoughts: When I read about this battle, French Grenadiers and line infantry were mentioned as being present in the Saxon ranks but as there was no further information on the actions of these units I have not included them in the initial deployment.
The battle was fought on a 3 foot x 2 foot ( 90cm x 60cm ) table of 2 inch ( 50mm ) squares.

The Winner.
This will be the side with the lower number of stands lost at the end of eight Game- Turns.
If both sides are equal in the number of stands lost, the Winner will be the side which lost the least total of points in stands lost.

CREDITS;

The figures are a mixture of Miniature Figurines and Peter Pig. The Chavau-de-Frise sections are from Irregular Miniatures.

The flags are pieces of masking tape roughly hand painted by myself.
The buildings were painted and supplied by Total Battle Miniatures.
The trees were from Amazon and decorated with a snow paint by Tamiya and a snow kit from www. Scenics.com
The log sections were from Blotz ( I think?)
The snow field, river and roads were made from sections of thin cardboard bought from Wilkinson and The Works ( two local stores).
The backdrop and square 40mm bases were made from picture-framing cardboard supplied by The Works.
Finally. The round 40mm command bases were supplied by Minibits.

Wednesday, 17 June 2020

Roman Britain: Part 4 ( contin. )Battle of Segontium.

I thought I would do a battle based on the Campaign map and rules in the previous chapter. Although fictional, the Scots-Irish did raid this area quite often and, for a while actually settled there.

I diced for the scenario and the result was:  "West Coast Raid".

I diced for the number of stands for the Scots-Irish, which was 16.
1 Command stand at @ 2 points.
13 stands of warriors armed with spears and javelins @ 2 points each.
2 stands of archers @ 1 point each.

Being at Segontium, ships were required. I had the Warbands already formed up from the boats. I put the boats in but as it turned out the game finished without them being required.

I used the scenery set up mechanism in Table Top Battles. Two hills, a wood and a river were required. I then had a quick look on Google for the terrain in the area and adapted the four items in a rough approximation.

There were only the civilians at the town but the 20th were at Deva,  so, I had them hard marching in light order to get there!

The Legion is represented by 16 stands.
11 stands are Auxillia style infantry @ 2points each.
4 stands are light archers @ point each.
1 infantry Command stand @ 1 point.


I put 4 small items inside the town plus some stands of civilians. I also put 2 stands of civil guard to represent the town decurione and his personal retinue. As it turned out, they didn't do much at all!!

In the rules I use,  Infantry stands can move onto a wall from the outside if there is space. During the course of the battle, three stands of warriors made it over to open the gate! from the inside.

I interpreted this action as a result of a lack of garrison and the dilapidated state of the walls!

The Romans formed up to the East in line. The Roman Prefect had his men form up not knowing what he was up against. The Scots-Irish formed up to the West and South on the shoreline ready to attack the town, not knowing the Romans had arrived.

I used my own Table Top Battle Solo rules with the 2 player mechanics of Fire and Combat.





I fought this battle over 8 turns. For most of the battle the Scots-Irish had the upper hand and the Romans were being beaten. Three stands of Scots-Irish made it into town and rounding up townspeople and loot.

It looked like the Scots-Irish were going to get away. Right on the eighth turn disaster struck!. The Scots-Irish Chieftain was struck down!

The Casualties were about even but losing the Chieftain lost the battle for the Scots-Irish.

The battle finished with the remainder of the Warband heading for the boats. Some of the Warband were caught exiting the town, therefore the prisoners and loot were recovered. There was one relieved Prefect at the end of it all!.


As always the table is 3 feet x 2 feet ( 90cm x 60cm). The squares are 2" ( 50mm ). The boats and fort are scratchbuilt from cardboard and foamboard. 

The figures are Hat Industries Roman Auxilliaries and Goths. The Roman archers are Newline Design 1/72 scale metal figures.

The Civilians are from Ceaser Miniatures and come from their boxes of Roman Supply Train.

The spears are from North Star Miniatures ( 28mm javelins). The buildings are from either Peter Pig or Hovels.

The square stands are picture framing cardboard 40mm x 40mm. The round stands are 40mm, from Minibits. The wood area bases are from S and A Scenics and the trees are various manufacturers.