Sunday, 18 January 2015

Almost Holowczyn

I tried out a scenario using the updated 'See The Elephant' rules today, but using my GNW Swedes and Russians, plus the GNW modifications. For this game I allowed unactivated units to attempt to rally, but I kept the same rules for elite units, allowing them to ignore a single die roll of '5' from each attack.

I decided to play the OHW scenario in which an army defending a river crossing is outflanked via and unscouted ford, having realised that it's quite close to the actual battle of Holowczn in 1708. In that battle the Russians defended a line of entrenchments behind a river, but the Swedes crossed in an unexpected place, forcing the Russians to redeploy and counterattack.

The Russians got four Infantry, one Elite Infantry and one Cavalry. They set up on one side of the table, behind a river, defending a bridge from behind some fortifications.

The Swedes could set up anywhere on the other side of the river. They had three Infantry. one Elite Infantry, one Cavalry and one Artillery. They set up most of their troops by the ford on the opposite flank to that which on which the Russians had to deploy, leaving the Artillery to harass the fortifications, and one unit of Infantry as a reserve.

This is the initial setup. The objective is the hill on the left of the picture.

The Swedes opened the battle by advancing their cavalry and elite infantry across the ford.

The Russians responded by occupying the hill, and moving their own cavalry up to slow the advance over the ford.

The Swedes attacked, their infantry moving along the river towards the fortifications, and their cavalry charging their Russian counterparts.

The Russian cavalry was routed - pushed back by the attack then finished off by the pursuit.

The Russians began to bring up more infantry.

The Swedish cavalry came under fire and fell back.

More Swedish infantry started to cross the river.

Throughout the game the Swedish artillery kept up a steady fire on the Russian fortifications, but it had no real long-term effect on the game.

The Russians continued to push forward, and the Swedes were beginning to look outnumbered.

Whilst the Swedish cavalry was forced to fall back again, their elite infantry went onto the attack, charging up the hill ...

... and driving back the Russian defenders.

However the Swedes were unsupported and came under attack from both sides.

They put up a gallant defence, but were force to retire, and formed up with the cavalry to rally whilst reinforcements came up.

Swedish infantry was now across the river, and the cavalry advanced to hold back any Russian counter-attacks.

They charged ...

... and were repulsed. They spent the rest of the battle rallying in the Swedish rear.

The position at the end of Turn 6. The Swedes have troops crossing the river, and are forming up for the attack, whilst the Russians have the beginnings of an infantry line to defend the hill with.

The Swedes advanced again.

The Russians brought up their Guards to defend the hill, supported by regular infantry.

On the Swedish left their elite infantry charged.

A furious melee developed ...

... as the Russian Guards moved up in support.

But now the whole Swedish line attacked.

The Guards held firm ...

... inflicting serious casualties on the unit attacking them.

On the Russian left their infantry had retired. This allowed the Swedes to swing onto the flanks of the Guards.

The fight for the hill continued, whilst the Swedish elite infantry continued to advance, routing its Russian opponent.

The Russian Guards routed one of the Swedish units attacking their position. The Swedish cavalry watched from the sidelines.

A furious Swedish attack up the hill ...

... saw the Guards defeated. The Swedes now held the objective. But could they keep it?

The Russians formed all of their remaining infantry up into a line ...

... and attacked the hill.

The Swedish elite infantry were driven back, but the troops on the hill held firm, and the Russians retreated and regrouped.

Both lines reformed, but the Russian left flank was now under threat from Swedish infantry crossing the bridge.

The Swedes attacked ...

... and the Russians fell back in disarray.

However they rallied, and pressed home another attack on the hill.

The Swedish elite infantry was also under attack again, and finally cracked, fleeing the field after having been in the fight from the start.

This now left the defenders of the hill somewhat isolated.

Another attack n the hill saw the defenders teetering on the brink of rout, despite support from the Swedish flank attack.

The attack was driven off.

The Russians now formed up and just poured volleys into the hilltop defenders.

This was enough to break them, and the game ended with no-one in possession of the objective.

Technically the battle was a draw, with the objective in no-one's possession at the end, but obviously the Swedes were the last to hold it so could probably claim a victory of sorts.

The ability of unactivated troops to rally was quite useful, keeping a couple of units in the game long after they would have been wiped out in earlier versions. It also offered the choice between fighting and rallying, and a choice in a game is always welcome. The rate at which casualties are inflicted does still seem to outstrip the ability to rally them off, so units in the thick of the fighting will still collapse in time. But the casualty rates in this battle were a lot lower than in other, equally hotly contested, square-grid games I have played.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...