Welcome to my wargaming blog,
I'm Dave and live in Morpeth, Northumberland in the UK.
This may or may not be a regular thing, we'll just have to see how it goes.

I am a painter/collector of figures first and a wargamer second. My thrill in this great hobby of ours is to place that final well researched & painted unit into the cabinet. The actual gaming with the figures is an important but secondary experience, we all like to win, but it isn't the be all and end all of it, being with good friends and having fun is.
Hope you will enjoy reading this blog as much as I will writing in it.
Just to remind the visitor to scroll down the various pages and click on 'older posts' to see more.

Monday 19 September 2022

Pt 6, Shevardino Redoubt 15.00 - 16.20 hrs the final assault.

 The final act, the desperate struggle reaches a climax.

In three different sections of the field three Russian brigades all require 'Falter' rolls at the beginning of the turn, all had 'ADC's' attached but not one needed them, all passed on a roll of a five or six. Well hard these Russians!

However the following turn their fortune ran out, the Russian brigade behind the contested redoubt having been forced to remain in square formations for a number of turns because of the presence of the French heavy cavalry finally broke leaving a huge gap in their lines.

Boquet's and Toulouse's final attacks to break the Russian lines.

Buquet's brigade over running the redoubt.

The centre of the field with the Russian cuirassiers attempting to cover the gap in the middle.

A weakened Russian right still fending off the French.

By twenty minutes past four in the afternoon after seven hours and twenty minutes of fighting (22 turns) though the French had finally forced a break through both sides were exhausted. Huge casualties had been suffered and as I was back to work next day I thought that this was an appropriate juncture to call it a day.

The Russians had three damaged cavalry brigades left to cover a withdrawal while the French, though in possession of the field having achieved their objective of taking the redoubt and clearing the road would have been too fatigued to pursue too hard, especially as their cavalry had been roughed up as well.

I have wanted to fight a battle on this scale for a good while now and the completion of this 10mm collection allowed me to do it at my own pace during my two week holiday. Fighting both sides was fine but photographing and writing it up for this blog made it a bit of work but work which I have enjoyed. I may have over egged the pudding as they say in how in depth the report was but as I have said in the past I do this sort of write up so that in my more senior years I may have something to look back on!

General De Armee is a great set of rules with which to fight a battle with on this scale, if I had a criticism then it would be that I feel sometimes brigades in a force are able to do things all at once most of the time. I know a 'Hesitant' brigade result restricts things but I still was able to push forward two divisions towards the Russians for most of the time. Some way of being forced to hold a brigade or two back would be better.

The other thing is that the charge, melee system and skirmish are a bit clunky, when written this set of rules was the best thing I had found that IMO represented Napoleonic warfare up to that point in time. I believe David Brown is working through improvements in those systems and hopefully will publish a second version of the rules.

The rule set Soldiers of Napoleon is really good for a couple of brigades each (and handles skirmishers particularly well) but would not manage a battle of the size I have just covered.

Many thanks to those of you dedicated enough to have ploughed through all of my ramblings, goodness knows what I will do next but for now I'm off to lay down!


Friday 16 September 2022

Pt 5 Shevradino redoubt 13.00 - 15.00 hrs.

 After four hrs of fighting both sides are exhausted, having suffered great loss, there is still an opportunity for a French breakthrough on their left centre and artillery is in place to attrite the Russians.

The Russian cuirassier brigade got slightly the better of the encounter with their French opponents but ended up 'Faltering' just the same.

Exhausted the French heavies rally behind their own lines.

Russian horse artillery unlimbers to cover the withdrawal of their cavalry but immediately suffer heavy casualties faced with three French batteries.

French 3rd battalion of the 15th Rgt succeeds in taking the Pavlovski Grenadiers in the flank routing them immediately.

Two other Russian battalions flee with them, the brigade 'Falters', can the French succeed in exploiting this crisis? Note the three French battalions pressing in through the woods on the Russian right.

We are all aware of the Russians defensive abilities and stoicism, steady volleys crash into the three French battalions.

Two routs and a retreat.

This was the opportunity lost, the 'Faltering' Russian brigade rallied and after moving forward to exploit the gap in the Russian lines this French battalion sat on the flank of the Russian line. It failed to charge!

The Russians real backwards but still manage to form a defensive line to face the advancing French.

Both light cavalry brigades are spent but the Russians hold the hill on their left.

The intended French thrusts for the next few turns.

The situation at three in the afternoon after six hours of fighting.

Part six this weekend.

Monday 12 September 2022

Pt 4 Shevardino redoubt 12.00 - 13.00hrs.

 With Vasserott's brigade assault on the Russian redoubt repulsed Davout ordered the French heavy cavalry to move forward and break the Russian lines. In particular the Russian heavy reserve cavalry brigade had to be forced back to allow the French infantry to continue the attack.

Five regiments of Russian cuirassiers were going to be very difficult to shift off that hill, at this point of time there was no room to deploy the French horse artillery.

The French heavies were given a 'Glory' attachment and moved forward to engage their Russian counterparts.

Disaster for the French, one rgt routed and one retreat leaving the two remaining disordered French cavalry isolated and a 'Faltering marker on the brigade. Normally supporting units like these would have to 'step back but the French infantry behind prevented them doing this.

On the other side of the redoubt the second French heavy cavalry brigade charged through the artillery to their front unforming the artillery (but not the cavalry) and contacted the Russian militia to their front. The Russian brigade was unable to form square as the brigade had rolled 'Hesitant' and could not therefore change formation.

Two Russian militia battalions were routed 'Faltering the brigade, they subsequently passed their rally result.

A view along the rear of the Shevardino redoubt at this point.
A view of the field

The encounter between the French and Russian light cavalry brigades on the flank continues.

The Russians drive the French back into the woods.

The French rear area, troops attempting to rally.

Skirmishing and volley fire exchanged on the Russian right, the Russians at this point had already been forced to issue a 'Command' order automatically rallying two casualty points off each battalion. This can only be done once per battle per Division.

Unfortunately they left the artillery battery in place just too long and the French skirmishers inflicted enough hits to destroy it. Another 'Falter' roll next turn, interesting.

The next couple of hours should decide the issue.

Friday 9 September 2022

Pt 3, Shevardino redoubt 11.20 - 12.00hrs

 The first French assault on the redoubt:

The five battalions of Vasselot's 17th line brigade swiftly take advantage of the fact that during the Russian line infantry's exchange of fire with the French skirmishers, two of the Russian battalions incurred 'Fire Discipline' (the smoke markers) and charge in.

The result was horrendous for the attackers, the Russian Morom and Revel musketeer Rgts poured withering fire into the assaulting close columns, 9, 10, 8, and a double six being rolled. all five French battalions being halted before the charge went in and a Falter result from the double six!

Vasselot's brigade reals back though not routing it fails to rally and must attempt to do so on the next turn. Even if it does it is now quite useless, the gambit failed.

A third charge, this time by the French light cavalry succeeds in chasing off the Russian Jagers to their front but is then counter charged by Russian cavalry.

Both sides fall back exhausted.

Russian infantry emerge from the woods to the left of the redoubt.

On the other flank the Russian line is holding but is now beginning to suffer casualties from French skirmishers and artillery.

Swarms of French skirmishers.

Two battalions of troops from Baden form line to attempt to check a Russian counter attack.

One of the French heavy brigades forms up behind the grand battery now repositioned in front of the redoubt. 

Above, the field of battle on turn eight, mid day.