Phil came over earlier today for our weekly game, this time featuring the third of our linked scenarios set in the Wars of the French Revolution. The French, having beaten both the British and the Austrians in separate encounters, were now poised for all out attack to drive the beaten enemy from Flanders!
Phil would command the French and had at his disposal: 2 Brigades of Heavy Cavalry; 1 Brigade of Light Cavalry; 2 Batteries of Horse Artillery; 3 Demi-Brigades of Infantry; 1 Light Infantry Battalion; 2 composite Battalions of Elites. The French needed to drive the Allies from the field in 12 Turns.
I commanded the Allies. The Austrians and British forces have not yet successfully joined forces. The game begins with the Austrians deployed around the village of Oopstuphaam. The command comprises: 1 Brigade of Heavy Cavalry; 1 Brigade of Infantry; 1 Brigade of Freikorps; 2 Batteries of 12lbers. The Hanoverians could enter after Turn 2, comprising one lone Battalion of Infantry, while the British could enter from Turn 4 ~ first their Light Cavalry, then the Heavy Cavalry Brigade, then the 2 Brigades of Infantry and Batteries of 6lbers.
The Austrians carefully draw up a defensive plan ~
The Austrians have quite a wide front to defend and lack the manpower to hold the whole front in depth. The Freikorps are thrown forward to shield the troops in and around the village ~
The French make a strong demonstration on the Austrian left, defended only by one Infantry Battalion! Skirmishers are thrown forward to shield the line, while a wary eye is kept on the enemy's Light Cavalry ~
On the French left the Heavy Brigades are drawn up, opposite the inferior numbers of Austrian cavalry, supported by an Infantry Demi-Brigade. In the centre French columns hurry forward to assault the village's defenders before their British Allies can arrive ~
The French centre and left wing hurry forward, sure of a decisive victory over a shaken enemy! Around the village, the defenders are waiting, muskets levelled and guns loaded and ready to deal death and destruction on the revolutionary upstarts ~
On the Austrian right the first clash sees the Heavy Cavalry of both sides engaged! While the cuirassiers defeat their French counterparts the Dragoons are broken. But, French cavalry attack is stalled, so the Austrian infantry and artillery have time to draw breath and deploy for action ~
Action switches to the centre and the fight for the village of Oopstuphaam. The Freikorps are holding their ground, supported by a Battalion of Grenadiers and a Battery of 12lbers. The French suddenly loose their elan and the attack falters ~
With things stalled on the left and in the centre the French ready to press their advantage in cavalry over the weakened Austrians. Just in the nick of time the British Heavy Brigade arrives on the right flank of the line and steadies the situation ~
With the right stabilized and the centre holding just in the nick of time a Regiment of British Light Cavalry reaches the field and moves at once to shore up the Allies left flank ~
The Austrian Cuirassiers take heart from the French confusion and the morale boost of their British allies timely arrival and smash into the unsuspecting French Infantry. One Battalion is beaten, but the other stands resolute. The Cuirassier will have to withdraw!
The situation in the centre is becoming tense. The Freikorps are under increasing pressure and taking losses. The Austrian commander hurries forward to bolster his men's resolve ~
Suddenly the Freikorps' line collapses when the units can take no more! The French gather themselves for the final assault on the village ~
Although the French are pressing hard in the centre, on the Allied right the situation is now more favourable and the French threat has eased thanks to valiant charges by the Heavies of both Allied nations ~
As darkness falls - its Turn 12 of course - the Allies are hanging on in the village despite some losses, but hold the field on their left and right. In the end the French concede defeat and march away to lick their wounds and regroup for the next stage. The exhausted Allies can do no more than hold their ground and savour their hard won victory!
So, in our series of linked battles the Allies have repulsed the French after two previous losses and set the scene for them to go over onto the attack later in the campaigning season. I have painted one Battalion of Hungarian infantry and have a second more than half done. When they are ready we will consider continuing with the action, but that will be a while yet. Next up in GHQ will be a WWII game using Rapid Fire! later in the week. More on that later...