Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Neil Thomas Napoleonic Wargaming: Peninsula Attack Part II ENDGAME

The Neil Thomas Napoleonic Peninsula game was finished last night will telling results! The French closed to assault the British positions along the line.  The attacks occurred staggered from right to left and in that order.  The assault on the French right (British left) went in first and succeeded in pushing the British off of their position, only to be swiftly counter-attacked by the British and pushed back off the hill!
French attack succeeds and pushes the British off the hill

meanwhile the other French battalions position themselves to assault.  It's important to note here that the Portuguese are considered "in the town" along with a battery of their artillery, making this village a tough nut to crack.  Note the hand to hand combat in the upper right.
Forces gather for the assault.  Note the French on the right hilltop, reeling from the last combat!
 The French commander is starting to get nervous.  Even with all the battalions up front, his musketry is not forcing any of the British or Portuguese from their positions and the first assault did not go his way...

Commit the reserves now!  The French elite battalion surges forward, hoping to finish off the assault.  
 The elites switch to column along with another battalion.  It's a hard day's work in the Peninsula! While I forgot to take pictures of the action, the Royal Artillery scored a major hit against the French Cavalry on the French left and successfully kill 2 stands.  They fail their subsequent morale check and lose another stand prior to "going in" and charging the fresh British infantry on the hill.  The cavalry unit evaporates!

French foreign volunteers close ranks march forward to continue to fire at the Portuguese in the town.  While they finish to find any targets, they are keeping extra forces pinned down.

Successful British infantry and artillery still holding the right!
 Where is our artillery?!?  The French commander cries.  The battery starts to move up, hoping to blast the Portuguese and British out of their positions.

meanwhile the combat on the right moves back and forth with the French gathering and assaulting the position again.

hit after hit against the stubborn Portuguese and each one is saved!  (receive a 4+ save in towns).
 Morale problems start to enter the picture now as the Italian volunteers start taking hits and more and more stands evaporate (Levy pass their MC on 5+).
Italians on the far left in white.  Casualties are mounting for the other 2 battalions.

3:1 odds in the village but not enough with that enemy artillery battery!

The whole line - lots of red dice!  (casualties)

The last of the British lights retreat to the safety of the village and continue to fire at the French to their front - exacting a rough toll on the Italians.
 Feeling the moment right and seeing nothing but dead horses and cavalrymen to his front, the British commander moves the Battalion on his right forward to start putting pressure on the French.  He has no idea that his troops are in much better shape than them!

One after another, the French battalions break!  The Portuguese have a mere 2 hits on them!  The British are firmly in control of the hill on their left (French right).

French commander is starting to worry and commits the elite reserves and artillery to a final assault.  His troops are suffering at the hands of the British and Portuguese musketry!
 The French commander sends in his most elite troops to assault the Portuguese directly and they are repulsed!  It seems like nothing can dislodge troops who are in towns!  Another Battalion forms up to assault the town but the British artillery also have something to say about that.

The Italians quit the field thanks to combined shooting from the Portuguese artillery and British lights, leaving one of the French assault columns exposed to British artillery.  They lose more stands and the French decide to quit.

Final Thoughts:  This was a good game - very hard fought although I have to say the way shooting and combat was going, I didn't doubt the outcome.  British muskets are deadly in Neil Thomas' rules and going straight up against them without flanking or extra artillery is asking for trouble.  With the numbers, I wonder if the results would have been a little different with NT's "regular" Napoleonic rules in "Wargaming: An Introduction."

I would like to try this exact same scenario with NT's rules from Wargaming: An Introduction.  With my megalomania, I'd also like to try it out with Rank & File, and Black Powder and see how that goes.  Of course with Cold War stuff in full swing, that's if I ever find the the time!


  1. Could be interesting to compare only needs time! Nice report...

    1. Phil,
      It's a passion of mine to compare rules sets and see what I like vrs dislike. As you said, though, biggest impediment is finding the time.

  2. NT's rules do look good. I must look at the Napoleonic book again - he had a real structure to the Nap battles that you don't see elsewhere, and yes... I do seem to remember that the British firing line was a bit dangerous.
    Great game.

    1. Darren,
      This is the second NT game I've played recently and I have to admit I'm liking them more and more. I think they appeal to both the "old school" enthusiasts as well as more contemporary rules fans.
      Some may deride their lack of C2 and chance elements in the game but those features can be quickly built in (command distance from leaders and event cards can be easily introduced).
      I'm going to try out the same scenario with Shako and also with "Warfare in the Age of Napoleon" and see how they go. I'm excited to play Shako again as it's been a few years.

      Goodness you're not kidding. The British units chewed up those French columns quickly and decisively hitting on a 3+ with each stand!! Going to have to think of a better way to dislodge them from those hills...

      Maybe bringing artillery along with the advancing infantry, moving up a line to shoot, then rushing in with an assault column or cavalry squadron?

      That would take quite a lot of men to push out a single battalion.