Tuesday, May 27, 2014


Once upon a time in the year 1813 there was a hamlet known as Brugeldamdorfberg, famous for nothing and important to no one, its location known only to its residents.  Until it became important.  Not through any fault of the residents, whose only concern in life was the finer points of turnip cultivation, but because some men with gold and brass on their shoulders drew a few marks upon a map and thus sent sent some 30,000 men on a collision course with this imminently forgettable hamlet.

The residents knew the jig was up, and their isolation from the Napoleonic storm at an end when a brigade of French soldiers under General de Brigade Charlet stormed their homes and the village Church and did their utmost to prepare its defense.  Brugeldamdorfberg was, in reality, at just the outer edge of a much greater storm some miles away but for the residents and it seemed they were at the very heart of the impending tempest.   The time was approximately nine o'clock in the morning.

The Field of Battle, with the forces at 9:15 a.m.  This is the first debut for Von Rubinsky's  terrain mat.  Rubinsky is normally a partisan of the Emperor, but has been granted a proper title for his latest contributions to the general cause!
Comte D'Erlon was pushing his men relentlessly.  Feldmarshal Blucher and the Prussian general staff had "humbugged" Marshal Ney and Von Pirch's corps was threatening to complete a successful flank march and turn the flank of the entire French forces in the region. 

Charlet's Brigade had managed to occupy Brugeldamdorfberg, but the rest of Quinot du Passage's Division was still coming up and further to the east Donzelot's Division and Jacquinot's light cavalry Division deployed along a line of hills.   

Pirch deployed is cavalry in the open plain to the east opposite Jacquinot.  The French horse artillery would quickly find its target amongst densely formed Prussian cavalry with the round shot impacting multiple formations with each discharge.

Undulations (hard to see) located in front of the Silesian Jagers (Center) and near the easternmost
landwehr battalion (far right). 
Tippleskirch's Brigade takes advantage of slight undulations in the ground to mitigate some of the fire from the French artillery on the ridge.  But not all are protected and the French guns rout a landwehr battalion after 15 minutes of bombardment.
Donzelot's Divisional 6-lber and corps 12-lbers on the the hill.

Generalmajor Kraft's brigade deploying to assault Charlet's brigade in Brugeldamdorfberg.

Kraft presses his Silesian Jager detachment into the orchards on the edge of the hamlet, while continuing the grand theme of Prussian flank march at the tactical level.  The 9th Kolberg Infantry Regiment marches with the brigade artillery and cavalry support to flank the extreme right of the French army. 

Von Rubinsky decides its time to kick the learning game into high gear.
General de Division Passage: "Are we here to destroy the Prussians or plant flowers?  Ignore those pansys in the cavalry that refuse to engage the enemy! En Avant! Vive Le Emperor!"  Passage dispatches a request for reinforcements to D'Erlon and then resolutely places himself at the head of his leading columns. 

Passage's 1st Division advances... into the teeth of the hastily deploying guns of Kraft's Brigade.  The officers on both sides of the contest show exceptional bravery and determination.  Generalmajor Kraft is everywhere inspiring his troops onward against the French flank.  General de Brigade Charlet, loses his horse to a musket ball while leading the II/55th line, but jumps clear to lead the battalion on foot-inspiring his men with his determination.  

The Jagers in the orchard are engaging two french battalions that appear content to continue the firefight

The fusiliers of the 25th Line charge in support of the corps 12lbers, allowing the guns to focus on the threat from the other battalion.  The I/105th takes withering loses of over 120 casualties and the assault staggers.  the II/105th fairs better, free from the attention of the Prussian gunners, and repulses the III/25th with light casualties to combatants.

The Jager detachments in the orchard (background) and center (far right) keep up a spirited skirmish fire.  Approximately 30 minutes have passed since the French opened the combat with their bombardment in the center.  D'Erlon is aware of that his right flank is badly stretched and dispatches orders to Jacquinot and Donzelot to detach forces to shore up the right. 

The field at approximately 9:30

The Prussians sense that victory is within reach at Brugeldamdorfberg, and Von Thumen's cavalry brigade is ordered against forward against the French lancers.

The Queens Dragoons and Silesian Uhlans charge against the 3rd and 4th Lanciers, the former is personally lead by Gen. de Div. Jacquinot.

After a light engagement the French lanciers are both victorious against their opponents.  General Jacquinot's expert handling of the 3rd Lanciers in fact managed to shock the color guard of the Queen's Dragoons and the Prussian standard is captured. Von Pirch, seeing the reverse, dispatches his chief of staff, and between Generals von Wahlen-Jurgass, von Thumen, and von Aster, the two units are returned to an acceptable state of morale.  But General Jacquinot at the head of his victorious 3rd Lanciers, is very difficult to find.  The dispatch rider for the reinforcements to Passage's 1st Division are further delayed.... 

On the opposite end of the battlefield, opportunity grants her favors to Major Romberg at the head of the two squadrons of the 11th Hussars who charge the flank of  I/55th Line.  "GOTT MITT UNS! VORWARTS!"  With General Passage, himself at their head, the battalion manages to hastily form a disordered closed column and a desultory volley drops five of the brave cavalry men, but this is not enough to stop the Hussars, 30 Frenchmen are cut down and another 15 surrender with the rest of the unit retreating in closed column.

The results of the charge of the 11th Hussars; the cavalry men press on hard to close with the rear of the unsuspecting I/54th! 
  The charge of the I/55th Line into the Prussian 6lbers faltered at 50 paces, General Charlet arrives and the as the battalion staggers into a shaken line, which is now almost surrounded and taking flank fire from the II/9th IR and canister at close range.  

The time is approximately 9:45, a light rain begins.

In the east the 3rd Lanciers follow up their success and charge the 4th Hussars, while the 3rd Chasseurs are repulsed by the Prussian horse artillery.  The 3rd Lanciers, their morale soaring charge home, but are repulsed by the fresh hussars.

In the center the action becomes general.  The 3rd and 4th squadrons of the 11th Hussars charge the flank of the exposed French foot battery.  The French hastily attempt to turn a section of the guns against the hussars, but the battery commander realizes the situation is lost.  The French abandon the 3 guns and attempt to retreat, but lose a further 5 guns in the process and 160 of their number as the Hussars relentlessly ride down the Frenchmen.  

The I/26th charges into the exposed flank of the devastated I/105th line from the edge of the orchard, and it is now the II/105th to enjoy the tender attentions of the Prussian 12 pounders.  Both units retreat, their morale shattered.  Unfortunately for the 105th regiment the 3rd and 4th Squardons of the 11th Hussars rally from their butchering of the French foot battery in the path of the retreat.  The two battalions rout and disperse with many men surrendering.  

 Barely a thousand paces away the 1st and 2nd Squadrons of the 11th Hussars are about to match the accomplishments of their brothers in arms and overrun the remaining organized resistance around Brugeldamdorfberg....

Kaptain Michaelis commanding the Prussian 6 lbers orders his men to pour on the canister.  The French charge is only staggered--it must be annihilated!  Despite the light rain keeping the powder smoke at bay, the adrenaline of the enemy not 50 paces from their position obscures the field as much thickest powder smoke.  Another devastating volley of close range canister threshes a swathe of death through the French line and with them a lone figure falls with his horse.  Gen. de Brigade Charlet's heroic stand ends with a mortal head wound.

But fate and luck are fickle beasts, and the lead swarms of death disgorged by the Prussian guns have not yet finished their harvest.  The 1st and 2nd Squadrons of the 11th Hussars lose 25 percent of their number as the canister that did not find its mark amongst the French rips into their flank.  The charge of the 11th Hussars falters just short of the rear companies of the I/54th line. 

For the French, however, the damage is done.  Luck merely bought the French infantry time to start their retreat. Passage's 1st Division was shattered.  D'Erlon ordered the rest of the corps to retire and take up a new line of defense in a position to refuse the flank of the French forces further eastward from Brugeldamdorfberg.

The Prussians quickly advanced through Brugeldamdorfberg and pressed the attack on D'Erlon's corps.  The Napoleonic tempest at this tiny hamlet, really an unremarkable gale in the grand arch of the conflict, passed over Brugeldamdorfberg and forgot the battle, the village, and its location as quickly as it came.

The Numbers:
Victory Status Summary:

The 11th Hussar for the Prussian MVP were the ones that ate the friendly fire and broke the closed column!
The 3rd Lanciers are of course the heroes on the other side of the field taking the 1st Dragoon's standard.

Prussian Status

French Status

My personal runner-up for MVP is the Silesian Jager detachments in open order.  The Jagers in the orchard (light woods) essentially went toe to toe with 3 battlions in column in a fire fight and gave as good as they got.  In the center the Jagers engaged in the 13th Leger (Line/Crack) in chain skirmishing for 60 minutes, and by the end of turn 4 the Leger got a "No Advance" marker... the casualties were about 5 to 10 on each round, but given time it adds up!


This was an excellent and enjoyable game.  We had a good turn out of six players, several of whom, we were happy to see again after some absence! Much teaching and chatting and catching up went on so we only got through an hour of "battle time", we probably would have played a bit more if Von R. hadn't decided it was time get the "learning" going ASAP...   The new terrain mat made its debut and it was well received as an excellent improvement and good basis for our 1815 historical refights.  

After our difficulties finding an acceptable Napoleonic set of rules the past few...years... I think Carnage and Glory fits the bill.  We keep the chrome/detail that we are unwilling to give up, but offload most of the complication and all the computation to the computer.  Players are essentially responsible for a movement system and nothing else.  The only real complaint I have is that the single data entry point is probably going to be a bottleneck for big games (for pick up games of a few divisions a side I think its fine).

Friday, May 16, 2014

To Find an Austrian

In a very "Resistance is Futile; Prepare to be Assimilated" sort of way Von W. and I  packed up the C&G band wagon and went on a pilgrimage to bring the light of our new rules to our resident Austrian.  The travails of life had us all in the mood for a nice relaxing Saturday with a small miniatures game.

And thus the stage was set... an errant Austrian commander had overextended himself.   A reinforced French division was poised to overrun the Austrian command holed up in a local village.  Apparently this particular commander was also an Imperial Eaglet and for political reasons the nearest allied force, a Prussian infantry brigade was dispatched to extricate the Austrians. 

Hapless Austrians.

The French out scouted the Allies (per C&G resolution) and were able to setup after seeing the Allied dispositions.  Gen. de Bde. Bruno's cavalry brigade with Gen. de Div. Jacquinot in tow is pushed up on the French left while the infantry come march up the center.  In an odd move, Jacquinot was seen cowering before the skirmish fire of the enemy... such conduct was unbecoming an officer and his action affected his men!   

Meanwhile, GdB Charlet was showing exceptional courage at the head of the leading battalions of infantry.

Von Thumen and the 2nd (Silesian) Uhlans spoiling for a fight with the French 7th Hussars and the 3rd Chasseur

Silesian Schutzen open order screen charged by French Infantry

Schutzen left of a light volley and hot foot it back behind the Fusiliers of the 25th Line

French columns going straight in.....  Guns not even unlimbered.  In the woods the Westphalian landwehr dig in with some light works.

French try to force the issue on the left... Jacquinot goes in with the Chasseurs and finds a mortal lance blow waiting for him.  The 3rd Chasseurs suffered only minor set back.... but that turned into full retreat with the fall of premier light cavalryman of the Empire. 

GdB Bruno and GdB Gorbrecht frantically try to recover the situation.

Full table 3 turns in

The center... the French are taking a pounding from the Allied artillery.  The converged Austrian 3lbers are doing significant damage at the close range.

French infantry cross the stonewall.....there was some discussion about the prohibition of infantry moving toward cavalry within their charge arcs.  The cavalry promptly charge.

Landwehr run from the wall without firing a volley. (I think perhaps the French should have instead continued into the landwehr battalion or the Austrians in the built up area. Both were likely valid charge targets at the beginning of the charge.  Allowing the French to penetrate so deeply might have been contrary to the moving between enemies w/ 50 paces on all sides rule [it would have been close].)

D'Erlon joins the party in attempting to keep the 3rd Chasseurs on the table.... and succeeds in bringing them back into good morale!  We had a further snafu when the 3rd lanciers were deleted from the games OOB (i was checking their status in the middle of a charge check and there after the unit could not be located). 

Round 2 and the II/Westphalian Landwehr lasts long enough to let off an ineffectual volley, then promptly retreats

The French are taking significant casualties, Gen. de Bde. Charlet is in now under compulsory retreat orders. 

In order to recover the situation the 3rd and 11th Hussars are launched against the French right.... unfortunately the for the Prussians the French all make it into square or close column.  The fights are surprisingly bloody (most rules cavalry vs square is just deadly to the cavalry...) in both cases the cavalry and the infantry take 70 to 100 casualties. 

 The cavalry take the worst of it and retreat

The morale status at games end

The Allied player decided his position was untenable with the loss of the woods and the disastrous/ inconclusive cavalry results on the wings.  Battle Honors to the 2nd Uhlans.  French took the field and the objective (the built up area), but at a cost.  

Some End of Game Shots:

Not bad for a small test game.  Again not much narrative in the report for which I vaguely apologize to my limited readership!  Its been a long few weeks at work.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Loss of Control

Time constraints of life necessitate that this report be somewhat curtailed.  Narratively not much happened, we smashed two Prussian Brigades with some attachments into D'Erlon's I Corps (equal points each side) doing a Carnage & Glory II group test run.

Overall we played 5 turns with R. in command of the French and von W. taking the Prussians with me on the computer.  R. had to abandon his post at the end of turn 4 so I took over.  5 turns represents an hour and 15 minutes of "battle time".  The first 4 turns were played out with about an hour and 10 minutes per turn, including me having to stop and explain the rules.  By the end of the 5th turn we seemed to be nearing a "decision" in that the Prussians were had many units retiring off table.  It would have been interesting to go one more turn, however, as the "cautionary" brigade integrity warnings were equal/more heavy on the French side and both sides had 2 or 3 units in full rout.  In the hour and 15 minutes ~5,000 hors de combat (in Empire terms 83 figures).

French taking the field.

Prussians and British

Cavalry scrum develops on the right.  The 3rd and 4th Lancers in line face off against the Silesian Uhlans in squadron column, the Prussian get the better of these encounters.

Prussians advance toward their objective, the built up area in the top right corner.  The fusiliers of the 26th Line in open order keep the defending French columns under musketry fire. Von W. focused his fire, as much as the angles allowed on one of the center battalions of defending the wall.

2nd Uhlans are successfully start to force back the French lancers

The victorious 1st and 2nd Sqns of the 2nd Uhlans.... overextended with their flank exposed to a charge

3rd Chasseurs launch an assault on the over extended 2nd Uhlans who evade.... uncovering the 95th Rifles who stand manage to stand, but can only fire at 50% effectiveness due to the 2nd Uhlans retreat.  The rifles are saved by the supporting fire of the 52nd which staggers the Chasseurs (and an error of the umpire didnt properly reduce the 52nd's fire).

Rest of the Prussian cavalry making use of the significant move distances to quickly strengthen the Prussian right.  The first command and control issues start to surface.... the remainder of the 2nd Uhlans refuse to charge.

French 4th Division in the foreground with 3rd Division to the right of the church.  Both antagonist's heavy artillery are in the center engaging in an artillery duel.  The Counter-battery fire of French significantly affects the Prussian artillerists.

D'Erlon at start of the match placed 1st Division on a defend order protecting their objective (the church), then changed the order to attack.  R. also changed the orders of 2nd Division.  Hilarity ensues as the ADC to 2nd Division left without the orders (and another ADC had to be dispatched).  When the orders to Quinot (1st Div.) arrives, Quinot finds them contradictory and chooses to remain on his previous defend order (limiting the divisions charge ability)!  

The I/9th Line with their regimental commander Major von Schmidt attached are ordered to assault the church....except von Schmidt decides the enemy positions are too well prepared and maintains his position instead.

Rout of the 3rd Chassuers; Off camera the Prussian 3rd Hussars charge with their brigader von Sohr... and are roughly handled by the 3rd/4th Sqns of the 3rd Chasseurs and von Sohr takes a mortal pistol wound throwing the Prussian Hussars into further disorder!

The charge of the I and II/26th line causes one of the battalions defending the low stone wall to retire (the battalion that had been the focus of the Prussian skirmishing).  Von W. follows this up with two battalions of fresh landwehr and the French battalions defending the wall fall back in face of these fresh troops.

End result in the middle.  On the right you see a battalion of French deep in Prussian lines.  The Prussian charge falter, and the commander tried to shake out into line.  The French battalion seized upon this disorder and charged the Prussians who retreated... and the French followed up in pursuit, now largely unsupported amongst the Prussian lines.

End game on the left with Prussian battalions routing in the background.

Endgame in the center.  The Landwehr have the wall, (and in fact two of the French units that defended it have routed), but the rest of 3rd Division is waiting to take the wall back.

Final Report

The Prussians came on strongly, partly as this was a test game and got bloodied for it.  The command and control issues on both sides were present on both sides.  The French had a better officer ratio and slightly better officers (in making the army lists I believe I left the French on the default inspirational, whereas the Prussians were ordinary) and it seemed like the French had more success in rallying the troops.  The above report I dont think captures the "fog of war" that C&G creates.  The players were never sure of the exact standing of their units at any time.  Units did not always react as expected.  Staff orders we mishandled. I think it gives a very different "feel" from the standard wargame commanded by two omniscient generals, that always know their odds of victory or defeat before any  single encounter occurs.

Time wise I felt as the umpire that I had some downtime, where each player was still deciding what they were doing so we could have moved somewhat quicker if we had more players pushing lead (in this fairly large game, the French had 336 figures on the table in just infantry). All and all though a decent test game! If C&G becomes a staple we will need to come up with some solutions for the various markers.