Monday, December 14, 2009


A dip into the CS Grant Scenarios book provided the details for our next Napoleonics game. One of the ideas in the book revolved around the raising of a siege by stealth, and we played it pretty close to the original, having found the main requirement, a fortress, in the club.

Neil had a large force of troops disposed to the fortress with his Spanish allies on guard duty and some patrols out. What he didn’t know was that the British attackers had negotiated a treachery amongst the defenders.

For a change, and for some practice, we Used the ‘Napoleon’ rules for this scenario, appropriate as it featured several large formations. In total around 160 figures were used, though we did play with smaller units to make it practical from our own collections. Units of 16 foot, 6 horse or 6 skirmishers.

The initial deployment was all in favour of the French, though the British had, as per the scenario two forward parties of light troops and dragoons. Beyond, three battalions of regulars marched through the night to approach the fortress from the wooded hills. The French slept cosily, until an explosion sundered the still night. The doors of the fortress blew open and the Verde regiment defending them broke in to scuffles as the loyalists were weeded out of the regiment by the traitorous mob.

The Dragoons charged through the entrance, only to find the French mounting their own horses and giving a spirited defence, the Blanco Regiment of the Spanish remained loyal to the French and covered their French allies as they roused. But the Spanish manned fortress gun seemed intentionally to miss everything it fired upon.

Lt Blunt of the 60th Saw the Dragoons flee and determined to fill the gap, leading his company of men into the breach. Meanwhile the French patrols arrived and rushed to tie up the advancing infantry.

The Verde Regiment removed all opposition from their ranks and began to lay down fire on the French, whilst the Dragoons rallied and charged into the courtyard. Blunt took his men into the buildings and narrowly fended off one column whilst the cavalry forced another to withdraw.

The Blanco Regiment started to advance around the battlements in an effort to block the traitors, and far away the French patrols drew away some of the support for the attack.

But not enough. As dawn rose and the game ended the British had secured entry to the fortress; a victory! But next would be the determined street fighting to secure the town. Next week will see the sequel, when Blunt leads his men onwards.

Another corker of a game; which the scenario really made. The rules worked well enough with the scaled down forces, though I guess we may well have paid fast and loose with some of the mechanisms, simply due to time.

As ever the spectacle of 28mm drew a few admiring looks, though on this night, not as many as the game next door, but more on them in the post below…

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