Mini Quatre Bras

Our second attempt at my Don Fetaherstone-Like rules was using a scenario from One Hour Wargames based on Quatre Bras.  The red side gets a full compliment of troops randomly determined.  They choose two to start the game with.  The other troops arrive in pairs on turn 3 and turn 5.   The blue side also gets a full compliment of troops.  They move on the board via the North-South road on turn 1.  As we were simulating Qautre Bras, we decided the French should have to remove a unit bringing their initial total to 5.

The order of battle is as follows:

Red had 3 line infantry, 1 light infantry, 1 heavy cavalry and 1 light cavalry.

Blue had 3 line infantry, 2 light infantry and 1 artillery.  I played the blue side and elected to eliminate 1 of the light infantry units.

The battle started with my troops entering the board in march column I had enough room to enter the artillery, 1 line unit and my light infantry.  red had setup with a light unit in the woods and a line unit partially garrisoning the town at the cross roads.  With the exception of the artillery firing and some skirmishing in the woods, not much happened until about turn 5.

The situation at the beginning of turn 5.  Skirmishing in the woods with turn 3 reinforcements (Red) just moving into position.

The situation at the beginning of turn 5. Skirmishing in the woods with turn 3 reinforcements (Red) just moving into position.

The battle opened well enough for Blue.  I elected to use the French plan.  I sent 1 brigade around the pond while the rest of my forces advanced up the center.  The light infantry attacked through the woods.  Firing opened up all along the line.  I scored some lucky hits on the Red cavalry and drove them back.  the following turn I would deliver another lucky volley and the cavalry would be reduced to just 4 figures.   The battle in the woods and in the center swayed back and forth.  As the turn 5 reinforcements arrived and the Red infantry took up position between the town and the woods, I managed to score many its on the Red light infantry.  It was below 50% strength while I was still above 50%.  Things couldn’t look better right?  The next picture tells all.

Blue infantry in the center only barely manage to rally and only with the help from the officer nearby.  The flanking infantry broke from a charge from the light cavalry.

Blue infantry in the center only barely manage to rally and only with the help from the officer nearby. The flanking infantry broke from a charge from the light cavalry.

My light infantry failed a subsequent morale check and fled the woods.  The following turn, it failed again and left the game.  Red’s light infantry made the morale check, despite taking heavy casualties and held the woods.  The two relatively fresh Red infantry units pressed the attack and delivered many casualties while my volleys did little.  the artillery scored hits throughout the game, only missing twice.  However, with only 10 rounds of ammo, by game’s end, it only had 1 or two shots left.

The game played out like the actual battle.  For those not paying attention, notice that the random setup gave Red cavalry and Blue none.  Blue had artillery while Red had none.  The units reacted like units under fire.  Any unit that takes casualties during the previous turn must make a morale check before moving.  At one point, I had the opportunity to flank a Red infantry unit but my own infantry barely passed morale and were not allowed to move.

We ironed out most if not all of the wrinkles in the rules.  The one last problem/omission is what happens if a unit that is due to make a morale check is charged before it has a chance to move.  The solution is to throw the morale check immediately.  If it passes then apply the die result to the charge reaction table and see how the unit behaves.

The rules are now uploaded and can be found in the “Old School” section of this site.

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