March 2023 – Quatre Bras 1815

So on Saturday I journeyed out to the Hutt Club to have a Black Powder game with Reg, Alan and Robert. As am planning on a small Waterloo Game at the Hutt Clubs annual ‘ValleyCon’ convention next month, decided to practice with a Quatre Bras refight.

We used the scenario straight from the ‘Albion Triumphant – Volume 2 The Hundred Days Campaign’ book. Scenario recommended for minimum of 12′ x 6′ table however as club short on tables, Reg had snared 2, I brought 2 with me so we settled for 10 foot long table(had 2 more tables in car…but after several trips to car…one more was a walk to far!)

The Allies were Alan and Reg with Robert and I as French. The Game was 8 turns long and is a meeting engagement with both sides having troops on the table at the start. The Allies were at the Crossroads with Bylandt’s Dutch Brigade in the front with Picton’s Division to its rear/flank. Reg commanded the Dutch/Hanoverians and Alan Picton’s 2 British brigades.

The French started with 2 Divisions on the table, both of 2 brigades. There were meant to be 2 cavalry brigade’s also on the table…but the reduction in table width resulted in not enough space to deploy them.

Below is set up positions.

Allies had Dutch and Hanoverians(Reg) on left flank with British(Alan) on the right. French had Robert on left and Terry on right.

View from Ney on centre road.

Robert must have had too much meat in his diet, he charged straight in while I was having trouble moving so was not supporting him!

The Dutch Brigade gets lots of Robert’s troops charging them.

View from Reg’s position with Dutch holding centre and Hanoverians moving up to the left flank. Robert has a bit of a bloodied nose but has given as good as he got. My 3 bttns of Legere are moving up in skirmish supported by columns. My 2nd brigade was having trouble crossing the stream and lagged behind.

Dutch and Hanoverians before my troops…….slooowwwlllyy advancing get into contact.

Dutch Militia at right angles…..there was a French bttn there a moment ago. On other side of road French and British have been at it…….light cavalry from both sides moving up.

On Robert/Alans side the infantry were committing mutual extinction and now the cavalry went at it. They both bounced in this combat.

It got bloody very quickly on this side….. Robert retired the remains of this brigade to rally them…Alan had a unit retiring out of line(or popping…can’t recall).

Back to view from Reg’s position….. my legere are inflicting casualties as the columns move in. Reg is having disordered/shaken units falling back from front line. Sadly for me …none were popping at this stage!!

The start of my attacks going in. Been a while since playing Black Powder and forgot that Dutch Militia and Hanoverian Landwehr are morale 5 not 4…… silly me.

Centre attacks.

Dutch and Hanoverians suffering badly and multiple units are shaken and disordered but Brunswickers have arrived and Reg threw the exact die roll to get them on table and in position! I had legere on his flank and in woods before Brunswickers beamed in from no where…damn them!!

French Cuirassiers have been resting on table edge for some time….. they really did consider themselves a reserve! A field of juicy targets and they just sat and looked at them!!

Ahhhhh… this warms the wee cockles of my heart……the remains of the Dutch and Hanoverian Brigades have been pushed back to tables edge. They are all hurting. I have obscured the guns with legere and then sent Uhlans into a shaken disordered bttn that formed square … but as shaken and disordered I still get to charge….they exploded and units within 6 inches had to pass a morale test to stay…..

There were now not many units left…as I did a sweeping advance into the remains…..they all popped or retired off table as well.

And it is here we stopped the game on turn 6. There were 2 turns left….Alan thought his British could hold the village……wishful thinking! But Dutch and Hanoverians were gone….Brunswicker foot wouldn’t last much longer…..I still had 10 intact bttns to throw at village… Roberts Cuirassiers am sure would carve through the Allied cavalry(they certainly weren’t tired!) but was time to pack up!

I thought it was a fun game and a good practice for our Waterloo refight at Hutt Club’s ‘ValleyCon’ convention on the weekend of April 22-23.

Til Next time…

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