Sunday 3 December 2023

Peninsular War a first Battle

As advertised we played our first Peninsular War game this weekend. Not only was this the first proper run out for the collection but also a first test of the Soldiers of Napoleon rules. In hindsight this was a little ambitious but we had a very enjoyable day moving figures around the battlefield and getting to grips with the rules.

My objective was to get everything onto the table so it is lucky the forces are broadly balanced. Given the size of the battle, (it’s only when you get everything out you realise how much stuff you have actually painted) the scenario was a simple attempt to engage and drive the enemy away. We did spent the first hour running through the basics of the rules with a small advance guard before driving into the larger battle. Given all this ‘newness’ I didn’t take that many photos and as you’ll see in my comments later we didn’t really reach an end…. anyway you’ll probably enjoy the photos πŸ˜€

The two advance guards have clashed around the cross roads, then both sides Cavalry Brigades have arrived and surged forward to try and capture the high ground.
Reserve brigades are gradually fed into the battle, skirmishers out in front start to force the Fr each cavalry back
French reserves arrive on their left flank
The battle at the cross roads has stalled, skirmish fire is ineffective and the main lines are unable to bring the enemy into volley range 
Another British brigade arrives and advances on the left towards the church (I need to start working on my Napoleonic limbers)
Something of a peninsular spectacle ?
Even though at this stage it was obvious we would get everything into combat we brought the final brigades onto the battlefield for effect.
The main swirl of battle is on the British right, the french cavalry have now been pushed back
But the french infantry is advancing in strength
The french chasseurs pull back further to regroup leaving the Dragoons isolated
Another shot of the British light dragoons
This was the point where we reached our gaming time limit. Even though we didn’t remove them four battalions have been broken. The action on the wing was hotting up, the British cavalry is in a good position in the centre. However both armies are bring significant new forces into the battle.
One final shot of the British advancing in front of the church.

So a splendid first run out for the collection. We were clearly too ambitious with the size of the battle which would have taken another day to resolve. However, we enjoyed the rules which are really designed for smaller battles. There were a few  elements which didn’t quite feel right, for example the relative inflexibility of light cavalry, although that may be our misunderstanding and I need to read through them again. I enjoy the card activation approach and we will certainly be trying them again soon.

Thanks as always for checking in

Matt


27 comments:

  1. Getting a newly raised army (or armies) out onto the table is a major milestone. Congratulations! Tackling a new set of rules is another feather in your cap. Putting all of the units out onto the table and perhaps, biting off more than can be chewed in one gaming session is the wargamer way.

    Table and new troops look great, Matt!

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    1. Thanks Jon very happy with the collection so far, and yes I couldn’t resist getting everything on the table, next time perhaps a more balanced battle for the rules

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  2. Nice to see the rewards of your painting. Looking forward to views on SoN once you have settled into the rules.

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    1. Thanks Norm, we are planning another battle Saturday with more appropriate sized armies so perhaps some more thoughts after that

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  3. It all looks great Matt. Nice to see the result of all your hard work on full display like this.

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    1. Thanks Lawrence very happy to see the collection and I hadn’t realised I had painted so much stuff !

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  4. Cool, ordered the rules yesterday

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  5. Great to see the collection get its first run out. Looking forward to seeing future games

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  6. Wow! That is a fine looking game and collection I didn't realize how much you had amassed in such short a time. With regard to light cavalry I don't know what you mean by inflexibility exactly, but on reading Warwick's replies on the FB group I think the rules are skewed towards light cavalry not being used as shock cavalry but to fulfil their roll and harass enemy infantry and negate the enemies light cavalry.

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    1. Thanks Phil…I hadn’t realised either on the painting front. The worry is I have a fair bit in the leadpile. I’m going to check out the FB for some questions which were raised in my head

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  7. What a fine looking game and as is our wont, we all feel the need to get everything onto the table now and then. Good luck with the rules too!

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    1. Thanks Steve happy to share the collection πŸ‘

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  8. A splendid tableful of toys Matt…
    You have certainly put this collection at a fair old pace…

    All the best. Aly

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    1. Put this collection together πŸ™„

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    2. Thanks Aly, as I enjoy painting it hasn’t felt like a big chore in fact quite fun. And going forward I can fill gaps at my leisure

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  9. A fine effort, but yes, too large for a first venture with SofN. A mistake we made too, so don't despair. We played our Peninsular War game again today, but using Black Powder as we have some rule issues to clarify too. I lost to Paul's French in 5 Turns!

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    1. Thanks David the size was entirely my fault and I had expected challenges which weren’t related to the rules. We have another run out this Saturday πŸ‘

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  10. That's an impressive battlefield full of excellent looking troops, Matt! Well done!

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  11. Great looking game with your lovely (and large!) new collection, Matt! We have a Peninsula game scheduled for Sun 17 Dec - last game at Barrys for this year - I am just hoping no "festive" events spring up in the meantime and put a kybosh on my attendance!

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    1. Thanks Keith enjoy the peninsular game πŸ‘

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  12. Great looking game, you've knocked these two armies out rapidly! I'm also guilty of chucking too many figures on the table first time out, difficult not too with such lovely Napoleonic figures!
    Best Iain

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    1. Thanks Iain the two armies have come together nicely ….too many figures that is an interesting challenge , I’m already painting some more πŸ˜€

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