Sunday, 21 January 2018

General D'Armee battle on the fields of Belgium - Part One

Brunswick Horse Artillery make ready to help support the allied left flank
For those of you who may be unaware, Napoleonic wargaming is one of my great hobby passions.


We had the recent opportunity  to get together with an old wargaming mate in Phil and see if we can start to get the wonderful and subtle tactical nuances of General D'Armee to become second nature to us.  The rules from Dave Brown are a wonderful extension of his General De Brigade rules which have been our rules of choice for more years than I care to remember.  An added bonus of using any of Dr. Browns rules is the first class level of support given to all gamers who use them globally by Dave and his gaming companions.  Rules queries are answered and there is a genuine welcoming of external views on rules, implications and input in a most gentlemanly of fashions.  A delight in the modern gaming world.


The decision was made to have a one on one game at my home and set it in 1815 where I could get a few of the allied contingents out to battle the French.


We decided on a battle consisting of seven brigades a side, one of which must start the battle off table in reserve.  The French had four infantry brigades based upon D'Erlons Corps at Waterloo as well as a light cavalry brigade and a heavy brigade of Cuirassiers.  The off table reserve would be a brigade of Youing Guard.


The allies would have two brigades of sturdy British troops, one of Nassau, two Brunswick infantry brigades.  These would be supplemented by a brigade of light cavalry consisting of Brunswicker Hussars and Uhlans as well as a Dutch-Belgian Heavy cavalry brigade of Carabiniers.


Brunswick Light Cavalry Brigade with artillery support prepare to manoeuvre



A wider perspective of the two British brigades plus skirmisher screens



Brigade of Nassau troops and two battalions of the 28th Orange-Nassau (thanks Wim)



Cookie loves Cuirassiers - these are deployed on his extreme right



Lovely command stand complete with trooper getting a wasp in his face whilst at the gallop

French columns move up whilst the 12 pounders are given a starring role very early in the piece


One of the great aspects of wargaming is getting the figures out, admiring your handy work and then remembering all the many things you need to repair, replace or finish off.  Such is the case in the photo above as I have been dithering on getting horse limber teams finished with traces and harnesses ala the talented Kevin East and Chris Gregg at the wonderful Not Just Old School Blogspot.  I promise to have at least four limber teams complete by the time we return to the table.


But I digress...


Picton views the field as the boys start to press forward



French light cavalry brigade on their left flank



Facing off against the French lights were the Dutch-Belgian heavies...well heavy in name at least



The Brunswick first brigade advances with the Advante Garde at the fore





The French Heavies manoeuvre to meet them



More French columns look to position themselves early in the piece



Whilst the allies attempt to take the heights in what is a reasonably flat field


An early skirmishing encounter as French and Allied troops look to gain a preliminary advantage. I made the
early decision to base my skirmishers, of which each battalion in a brigade can contribute one, in general terms, on
a single oval base available from Warbases.  Very pleased with the result on the table and the visual
 distinction made at a glance.



Almost looking like a Grand Battery, the French have some firepower assembled in their centre



The French continue to advance to the centre supported by artillery and sheltered by their own screen



DB Heavy Brigade awaits orders whilst in position to the left of the small farmhouse...




...whilst the Nassau and 28th Orange-Nassau take the fields in support




The Dutch Belgian Horse artillery unlimber and seek to disturb their French opponents



Another view of the Carabiniers - lovely Perry Miniatures


After an initial blast of effective range roundshot from the Dutch battery a slight withdrawal behind the rise was deemed
a sound tactical move.

With two ADC's around our good friend Milhaud, a "Glory" order appears to be on the cards!



Luckily my brave Brunswick Hussars have already thought of this cunning ploy and are prepared.



Light infantry advance at the trail



Mmmm...seemed like a good idea at the time



The lead regiments of British take the high ground and prepare to use their superior volley firepower to maximum
effect whilst a Royal Artillery battery looks to find a window of opportunity


The deployed French 12lb battery has already caused some consternation in the Brunswicker ranks.  As a result, the
Advante Garde are ordered into the woods to their front to see if they can distract the artillerists in a particularly
nasty manner.

In GdA the only figures which are removed are skirmisher bases



The first Brunswicker squadrons rout from the Cuirassiers and cause the brigade to falter



An overview of the battle unfolding



The French General looks pensive as he prepares his next cunning move



Looking down the table from the allied left.



With black squares forming to fill the gap the next Brunswick lights move up to the pointy end.



In the centre the action looks interesting.  The 95th have yet to form out into a skirmish line and are using
their concentrated fire to maximum effect upon the columns to their front.




A few more photographs later in the week to bring everyone up to speed on the battle as it stands.







31 comments:

  1. Carlo,
    Great report and lovely looking game. Nice to see allies getting an airing. I like the idea re the basing of the skirmishers. Big regret not doing main stream 28mm Napoleonics but a little dabble in the Peninsula is on the cards.
    Looking forward to the second part.

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    1. Thank you so much Graham and yes, the skirmishers and the adc’s on the oval bases makes a distiction which is most useful on the table. I love the 28mm figures however they tend to get airings now away from the club where I can leave them set up for a more leisurely game timeframe wise. I think though that your vast 28mm collection would be the envy of every wargamer. Look forward to seeing your Peninsular foray.

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  2. Just lovely. very tempting to redo my 28mm french rather than selling them.

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    1. Hang onto them Paul and a little spit and polish with and a new rule system such at GdA you’ll enjoy yourself immensely.

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  3. Great looking game. Having my first go at these rules this Friday at our club.

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    1. Thank you Anthony. I am sure you will very much like the rules. Let us all know how you get on.

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  4. Great looking game Carlo. Dave Brown came up trumps with these rules and the ACW ones which are similar.

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    1. Cheers Robbie. Yes these rules fit the bill and tick all the boxes for me I must confess. Very well done by Dave B!

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  5. Terrific looking game. I have played 4-5 games now, I wish I could get more games in. You have a great looking gaming room, I am curious how big was the terrain. Seven brigades of 28mm figures sounds big!

    John

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    1. Thank you very much John. Your desire for more games is every wargamer with families lament I think mate. Yes I am very proud of the games room and I have most fortunate to have a very considerate wife who allowed me the luxury (and expense) of this when we renovated several years ago. My boys use it as well for their painting and reading so it is wonderful to hear them up there when they game as well. The table is 12 x6 foot so the expanse is perfect or his size game, especially as GdA rewards depth in attack. We each still have one brigade in reserve off table at this stage so the size, though big, is certainly not unmanageable with these very good rules.

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  6. Magnificent troops, Carlo! Magnificent battle! Looks great!

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  7. That's a good looking game, with some fine painted miniatures!
    Thanks for sharing.

    One small note: I think what you call Chasse Orange should be called the 28th Oranje-Nassau (or Orange-Nassau)

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    1. Thank you very much. I have made the correction to my post as I am most determined to always take positive and helpful advice on Dutch and Belgian troops from wargamers named Wim! Their is an authenticity in hearing advice on the Nassau from a Dutchmen that's most certain. Thank you.

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  8. You like Naps?! Whaaat?! πŸ˜€
    Even a newcomer to your blog like me can tell that. I’m interested in the set up, how many regiments are in a brigade? 7 brigades sounds like a big battle but I know the command mechanisms in GdA is more interesting with more options.

    Bet it felt good to get those markers on the table as well! πŸ˜€

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    1. You bet it felt good to get them out there Stew. Now I just have to finish off four or five French limber teams. They are already painted but I want to mount traces and cross beams on for the authenticity. Love those Napoleonics mate!

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    2. Sorry Stew - around four to five regiments/battalions to a brigade and two regiments of cavalry.

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    3. Thanks for the info! If GdA is like PC and each regiment has 12 hits then that’s a very big game! Big in a good way! But let’s see: 12 x 5 x 7 = 420 possible hits in an army (roughly). Let’s say half that before an army is broken as battalions get worn out so that’s 210 casualties, and let’s say an average of 20 casualties a turn is still 10 turns. Hope that made since and some of that is speculation. Happy gaming!

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    4. That’s a heck of a lot of maths StewπŸ˜‰

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  9. Having entertained Kevin's Perry Napoleonics so often on my table it does seem funny to see their twins on yours 11000 miles away! Thank you for the link to my blog, I can take little credit for Kevin's modelling skills but he does seem happy for me to showcase them to the world - some lovely ones to come very soon. Your game looks great and we are thinking about GdA after the dust has settled following our Quatre Bras refight. Chris http://notjustoldschool.blogspot.co.uk/

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    1. Its funny isn't Chris that wargamers a world apart can share ideas and enjoy the works of other wargamers with similar interest. One of the best aspects of the hobby from my humble perspective. You will all VERY MUCH enjoy General D'Armee my friend.

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  10. Great looking game Carlo, with nice numbers of the 28's too! My sort of interest exactly, as you know! :)
    Excellent looking wargaming space you have there also!

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    1. Thank you very much Mark and it was your recent game that inspired yo get the figures out and organise the game. Thanks for the complements mate.

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  11. A very fine looking game with gorgeous troops (and, I agree, a stunning game room)!

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    1. Cheers Peter, greatly appreciated. Thanks for the comment on the room, I am a very fortunate bloke.

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  12. A great looking game Carlo, those troops are superb, I hope you're enjoying GdeA as much as I am though I haven't tried a game with my British yet

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    1. Hi Kerry and thanks for your generous comments, especially given your wonderful collection in both 28 and 15mm! Absolutely loving playing GdA and the British have a nice volley benefit which my French opponents intensely. It’s wonderful!

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  13. Fantastic set up you've got there Carlo! Very impressed and very jealous - if only my wife was so accommodating with my use of space in our house! Give your wife a medal! Great looking game that musters many of the units we currently have in our group's collection right now too with the same Perry figures, similarly based. Your units look terrific and the table belies the number that you mention are on it. looking forward to part 2 to see the conclusion plus more lovely close ups! All the best.

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    1. Thank you so much Kevin. Yes the two collections of ours have many similarities and show the Perry Miniatures off pretty well in my humble opinion. More certainly to come.

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  14. A great looking game. A few friends and I have started playing GdA. We were disgruntled with the house rules used at our club and I haven't played Napoleonics for quite a while. But GdA has revitalised my love for Napoleonics. It's very inspiring to see games of like this and you have given me plenty of inspiration to carry out my plan to build the Black Brunswickers.

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    1. That’s wonderful news Ian. I very much enjoy the GdA rules and for me, they are perfect. Obviously quite a few people agree as well. I am also very pleased that the Black Brunswickers have inspired another wargamer to get them on the table. If you end up using 28mm then you simply must use the stunning Perry Miniature sculpts. They are superb!

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