Demo Game Progress… The Battle of Murfreesboro at Warfare 2021 (Part 5: Flock Like A Beast!)

Sorry if ACW isn’t your bag, but this is yet another report on the progress of my demo-game for Warfare 2021 (Ascot Racecourse, 27/28 November).  There will eventually be non-ACW-related stuff on this blog!  If you haven’t been paying attention, this is a 10mm refight of the Battle of Murfreesboro or Stones River, which was fought on the 31st December 1862 and was the bloodiest (in terms of the percentage of participants who became casualties) of the entire war. We’re using Fire & Fury 2nd Edition and a slightly adapted version of Troy Turner’s Murfreesboro scenario from the Fire & Fury Great Western Battles 2nd Edition scenario book.

In the last thrilling instalment, your hero had painted all the terrain boards, varnished the rivers, laid the railway-track and marked out the wooded areas with suitable-coloured flock and undergrowth.  The sun was shining, so I also managed to lay them all out for a few photos (below).

This week I’ve been flocking like a belt-fed wombat and have flocked all the grassland and farmland areas of the boards.  Sadly, the weather hasn’t been as good, so I haven’t been able to get them all out again, but I did set two up, complete with some troops  and (Summer) trees…

Above:  The Rebs man the barricades!  In the actual game the trees will be mostly bare (Woodland Scenics tree armatures painted, but without foliage), with the odd green one dotted throughout for a bit of colour (and to make up the numbers – we’re going to need a lot of trees!).

Above:  For the grassland I again painted the area with PVA glue and then sprinkled on a few bits of Woodland Scenics ‘Undergrowth’ in olive green shade.  That was followed by some irregular patches of Woodland Scenics fine-grade ‘Yellow Grass’ flock and the whole lot was then covered in fine-grade ‘Burnt Grass’ flock.

Above:  Veteran flockers will know that you must ALWAYS tap off the excess when the flock has dried, as at least 50% of it (probably more) will be sitting loose on the top and can then be recycled.  You can sieve out the bits of undergrowth and bush that also fall off.

Above:  A bird’s-eye view.  I’m really pleased with how the two shades of grass have worked together and I think it does look suitably dead and wintry.  I wasn’t brave enough to make it all with Yellow Grass, which is probably how it looked in the dead of winter (as in the painting above), but the yellow patches do tone down the green tone of the Burnt Grass.

Above:  I’m also really pleased with how the railway looks in the landscape.  I thought that the brown ballast looked too red, but it’s actually blended into the terrain really.  It looks suitably rusty and actually looks just the same colour as the railway line outside my house.

Above:  The very last of the Union troops!  I had previously miscounted the number I needed to paint for the game, but they’re finally done.  As discussed last time, I’m actually working my way through the order of battle for Gettysburg and have now finished the Union I, II, III, XI ad XII Corps apart from two Zouave units, the US Sharp-Shooters and the generals for II & III Corps.  The ‘Italian’ flag on the right is that of the 39th New York Infantry (‘Garibaldi Guard’), though they didn’t fight at Murfreesboro, so won’t be seen in this game!

I’m now cracking on with the Rebels, which amounts to around 30 bases of infantry, 10 bases of cavalry, matching dismounted cavalry and horse-holder stands and a massive heap of Army of Tennessee-specific generals and brigade command stands with the appropriate flags.  Once those are done I should have enough time left to paint six objective markers (i.e. small vignettes showing troops storming a position – three for each side), five casualty markers (i.e. ambulances and attendant stretcher-bearers) and some more game markers (disorder, low ammo, wrecked battery, etc, as shown here).

Anyway, back to work… The next job is to add weeds and bushes to the riverbanks and some weathering to the railway level-crossings.  The boards will then be FINISHED! 🙂 

Posted in 10mm Figures, American Civil War, Fire & Fury (Brigade), Games, Scenery, Warfare (Show) | 2 Comments

Demo Game Progress… The Battle of Murfreesboro at Warfare 2021 (Part 4.1)

Just after I’d posted Part 4 in this series, the sun came out and the lawn dried off, so I took the opportunity to lay all the boards out (something I lack the space to do in the house) and take some more photos.  So here’s a better look at the boards.  Seeing it all laid out actually enabled me to spot a couple of mistakes where wood-edges didn’t match up across board-edges and even a whole missing piece of woodland, so those have since been corrected.

Also an apology: I’ve mentioned a few times that the Fire & Fury scenario for the Battle of Murfreesboro  was written by Rich Hasenauer, the author of Fire & Fury rules.  However, the scenario, as published in the Great Western Battles 2nd Edition scenario book, was actually written by Troy Turner.  Sorry Troy and thanks for writing a superb scenario.

Above:  The view from the south, looking north (the same orientation as the scenario map).  As mentioned last time, the bare earth looks much paler in photographs than it does in reality.

Above:  The view from the east, behind Confederate lines, looking west.

Above:  The view from the north, looking south across the railway.

Above:  The view from the west, behind Union lines, looking east.

Above:  The view along the railway line.  Unfortunately, a short section in the middle is slightly wonky, but isn’t that obvious unless you look along the line from this angle.  It’s also in the middle of the ‘Round Forest’, so should be hidden by trees when the game is set up.

Above:  The ‘Slaughter Pen’.  I noticed that I’d actually missed a strip of woodland along the road beyond the rocks, so that’s now been added.

Above  The overhead view.

Right, back to the flocking…

Posted in 10mm Figures, American Civil War, Fire & Fury (Brigade), Games, Scenery, Warfare (Show) | 5 Comments

Demo Game Progress… The Battle of Murfreesboro at Warfare 2021 (Part 4)

I’m pleased to report that once again, prep work for my 10mm ACW demo game of the Battle of Murfreesboro or Stones River is progressing well and the twelve terrain boards are now almost complete.  In my last progress report I’d assembled the terrain and it was awaiting painting.

Above:  I’ve now painted and dry-brushed the boards and have added the base flock for the woodland areas.  These areas were painted with PVA glue and then had Woodland Scenics ‘Undergrowth’ in olive green scattered over it, along with odd scraps of Woodland Scenics ‘Foliage Clusters’ in various shades of green.  This was then covered with Woodland Scenics fine-grade flock in ‘Earth Mix’, to resemble wintry woodland floor covered in dead leaves. 

When the game is set up, these woodland areas will then be covered in bare winter trees, with the occasional dark green cedar tree.  I still need to stick needles into the trunks of over 100 Woodland Scenics tree armatures.  Once done, the trees can then be stabbed into the polystyrene terrain boards without damaging them, which looks a lot better than based trees.

The undergrowth might prove to be a complete pain in the arse when manoeuvring troops through the woodland, so the players will have my standing permission to rip it off the board and move it aside, so the figure-bases sit flat on the board! 🙂

Above:  The railway is second-hand ‘N’ Gauge flexible model railway track, which I got from an online shop selling second-hand model railway stuff for next to nothing.  The chap very kindly cut it into 12-inch lengths for me, to make it easier and cheaper to post.  It was originally very shiny metal with black plastic sleepers.  In reality, rails and sleepers are always covered in rust and iron ‘brake-dust’, so I painted them with brick-red enamel.  When the paint was dry I gave the rail-head a quick polish with fine sandpaper.

The track-bed was first painted with a thick later of PVA and the track was then pressed down into it, before being sprinkled liberally with Woodland Scenics’ brown ‘Railway Ballast’.  I then finished it off with a few weeds, using more olive green ‘Undergrowth’.

The rivers were painted with Ronseal interior gloss acrylic varnish in ‘walnut’. In all I did about six or seven coats, but it probably only needed three!  Once I’ve added all the grassland flock, I’ll add bushes and weeds along the riverbanks.

Above:  The earth colour actually looks a lot lighter in the photographs than it does in real life!  I used an interior emulsion colour from B&Q called ‘Caracas’, which is basically beige.  Then I dry-brushed it with Sandtex ‘Oatmeal’.  Happily, it goes quite well with the colour of the grit I used for the breastworks.

For the railway level crossings I used matchsticks for the planking, which were then painted dark brown, along with the matchsticks on the breastworks.  I then used more PVA and ‘ballast’ to build up the road-ramps on each side of the crossings and the roadway was then painted and dry-brushed to match the surrounding terrain.  I’m going to tone the pale colour down a bit with more rust, plus some black where trains would have dropped oil and soot when passing.

Above:  The ‘Slaughter Pen’ looks pretty good now it’s starting to merge into the scenery.  I’m going to add some bushes and flock, especially where it meets the road.

Above:  Lastly, I’ve done some more Union troops.  I thought that these were the last, but it seems I’d miscounted and I still need to do another dozen or so bases! 🙁  The sharp-eyed will notice the green flag of one of the Irish Brigade regiments; I’m still largely using the order of battle for Gettysburg as my painting ‘To Do’ list and I’ve been churning my way through the II, III & XII Corps for that battle, so this is actually Caldwell’s Division of II Corps, plus the III Corps Artillery Brigade.  I won’t be using the Irish Brigade flag for Murfreesboro, as they weren’t present at that battle.

Back to the flocking…

Posted in 10mm Figures, American Civil War, American Civil War Union Army, Fire & Fury (Brigade), Painted Units, Scenery, Warfare (Show) | 8 Comments

Demo Game Progress… The Battle of Murfreesboro at Warfare 2021 (Part 3)

Preparation work for Murfreesboro is proceeding well here at Fawr Towers!  In the last thrilling instalment I’d built the basic terrain boards and was waiting for the PVA glue to dry.  With that done, I sanded down the slopes a little more to lessen the ‘step’ and started modelling the Confederate fieldworks covering the frontage of Hanson’s, Anderson’s and Chalmers’ brigades, as per the scenario map:

The fieldworks are described as ‘hasty’ and were probably little more than piled fence-rails, tree-trunks and rocks, so I’ve used twigs, matchsticks, MDF offcuts and horticultural grit, braced with a line of fenceposts made from half-matchsticks. all secured with a liberal amount of PVA glue and seasoned with builder’s sharp-sand:

In addition to the fieldworks, I needed to model the pivotal rocky outcrop known afterwards as ‘The Slaughter Pen’.  This is a classic piece of exposed ‘Limestone Pavement’ as we might see on the western Brecon Beacons, Derbyshire Peaks or Yorkshire Dales, so being very familiar with such geology, I considered accurately modelling such a geological feature…

…for all of ten seconds before opting instead for a random pile of rocks, albeit hand-selected by artisan foragers and placed upon a jus of PVA, garnished with horticultural grit and again seasoned with the finest builder’s sharp-sand:

I was also going to model the railway at this point, but then realised that I really need to do that after painting the boards, otherwise the rails will get covered in the main earth colour.  Much as it pains me to say it, lest I be accused of <gasp!> railway modelling… I’ve bought a bag of miniature railway ballast…

With the rocks and fieldworks firmly fixed, I liberally painted the boards with yet more PVA and liberally sanded them to create some texture.  I find that a coat of PVA and sand also serves to stiffen and toughen the boards (though probably triples the weight).

These days I use supermarket play-pit sand.  I can get very fine sand from the lovely beach sand-dunes hereabouts, but it contains a lot of salt which can leach out to leave a deposit on water-based paints.  Pembrokeshire County Council also tends to take a dim view of people stealing the beach, even if it is just one bag at a time…  I picked up my last sack of play-sand at Tesco in 2015 for about £5 and it’s served to cover three demo-games and every figure and tree-base I’ve made since, so it’s good value!  And there’s still plenty left.

As for the figures, the painting is already well ahead of schedule, so all being well, I should be able to paint some ‘extras’ such as ambulances, objective markers and the like.  As discussed in Part 1 of this series, I’ve been researching the headquarters flags of Rosecrans’ Army of the Cumberland and at the time of the Battle of Murfreesboro, the three wings of the army were simply described as the Centre, Right and Left Wings and probably didn’t use headquarters flags.  However, only one week after the battle they formally became the XIV, XX and XXI Corps and adopted headquarters flags shortly afterwards.  Although they’re anachronistic for this battle, I thought I may as well create some commanders for the three new corps, as they’ll come in handy for a future refight of the Battle of Chickamauga.

I described the various known flags last time, but got one key fact wrong: the headquarters flag for McCook’s XX Corps (shown above) was apparently red, not blue.  The headquarters flag for XIV Corps was apparently identical, though with a blue field and the number ’14’.  The divisional headquarters for XIV Corps carried blue flags with stars indicating the number of the division and it’s therefore probably that XX Corps went with a similar scheme, except using red as the flag colour.

I’ve therefore knocked up this flag-sheet as a ‘best guess’.  The bright blue flags with black stars are for XIV Corps from January to August 1863, while the dark blue flags with white stars are post-August 1863 and are apparently the type carried at Chickamauga.  The red flags are my hypothetical flags for XX Corps (the eagles aren’t quite right (the shield should be of the field colour, with the corps number), but they’re in the right pose and are ‘near enough’ for 10mm…). 

PLEASE let me know if you have better information, as these flags are very easy to remove and replace with more accurate versions! 🙂

Rosecrans

Above:  General William Rosecrans‘ headquarters.  Army commanders are not normally represented in Fire & Fury, but in this instance Rosecrans’ personal example was a consistent motivating factor, so he features in the scenario as a ‘roving positive modifier’. 

An escorting cavalry trooper carries the headquarters standard, which to be honest, was probably adopted after the Battle of Murfreesboro.  The standard was based on the Stars & Stripes, though was superimposed with an eagle and had ‘DC’ within a circle with stars, indicating the Department of the Cumberland.

Above:  ‘Old Rosie’ has attracted some admirers from the local civilian population.

Above:  A young staff officer salutes a ‘Southern Belle’…

Above:  “Oh God, on second thoughts…”

George H Thomas

Above:  General George Henry Thomas, commanding the Centre (later the XIV Corps). 

As mentioned above, the flags shown are those carried at Chickamauga in September 1863.  An order from Rosecrans issued in early August 1863 dictated that the old flags, being bright blue with black stars, were to be replaced with new flags of dark blue with white stars.  The number of stars indicated the number of the division.  The stars were arranged vertically near the hoist (1 placed centrally, 2 placed top and bottom and 3 placed equally spaced), though when XIV Corps formed a fourth division, the fourth star was placed alongside the central star of the column of three stars.

For reasons unknown, XIV Corps changed its pattern of flags twice again during the course of the war, eventually settling upon an acorn as its corps badge.

Above:  Thomas’ divisional commanders: Rousseau (1st Division) and Negley (2nd Division).  Fry‘s 3rd Division was largely absent, though elements intervened in the latter stages of the battle.

Alexander McCook

Above:  The headquarters of General Alexander McDowell McCook’s Right Wing (which later became XX Corps).

As mentioned above, these flags are speculative, based on a single mention of the XX Corps headquarters flag at Chickamauga being red and of an identical design to that of XIV Corps.

Following the horrific casualties suffered by XX Corps at Chickamauga, the remnants of the corps were absorbed into a new IV Corps and a brand-new XX Corps was formed under General Hooker from the remnants of XII Corps and part of XI Corps, transferred in from the Army of the Potomac.  The new XX Corps adopted the five-pointed star badge and the system of flags already used by the old XII Corps.  Any attempt at research into the flags of XX Corps consequently always throws up the flags of the ‘new’ XX Corps.

Above:  McCook’s divisional commanders: Davis (1st Division), Johnson (2nd Division) and Sheridan (3rd Division).

Thomas L Crittenden

Above:  The headquarters of General Thomas L Crittenden‘s Left Wing (which became XXI Corps).

Thankfully the headquarters flags of XXI Corps are rather better recorded than the other flags of the Army of the Cumberland.  They seem to have stayed the same throughout 1863, being striped red, white and blue, with black stars indicating the divisional number.

XXI Corps suffered horrific casualties during the Battle of Chickamauga and was amalgamated with the remnants of XX Corps, to become the new IV Corps.

Above:  Crittenden’s divisional commanders: Wood (1st Division), Palmer (2nd Division) and Van Cleve (3rd Division).  Van Cleve had a particularly striking ‘badger’ beard, which was fun to replicate. 

Above:  I’ve also painted some more Union artillery.  God I hate painting limbers…

Above:  And I’ve also painted three more brigades of Union infantry.  I’ve still got another four guns and sixteen bases of infantry left to fo for the Union side, but should have those finished by this time next week.  Then I’ve got about thirty bases of Confederate infantry to paint, plus a load of Western-specific infantry command stands and mounted commanders.

Right, I’m off to slap some paint on the terrain boards…

Posted in 10mm Figures, American Civil War, American Civil War Union Army, Fire & Fury (Brigade), Games, Painted Units, Scenery, Warfare (Show) | 5 Comments

Demo Game Progress… The Battle of Murfreesboro at Warfare 2021 (Part 2)

As discussed last month, I’m booked in to put on a demo game at the Wargames Association of Reading’s ‘Warfare 2021’ show over the weekend of 27/28 November. 

At the last ‘Warfare’ in 2019 I won the trophy for the Best Demo Game with my Cassinga Raid game and this time I’m doing a refight of the American Civil War Battle of Murfreesboro (also known as Stones River), using Pendraken 10mm figures and Fire & Fury 2nd Edition rules, with a slightly expanded version of Rich Hassenauer’s scenario from his Great Western Battles 2nd Edition scenario book for Fire & Fury. 

Here’s my version of the scenario map.  As I’m using 10mm figures with an increased ground-scale, I’m able to bring the small flanking action between Zahm’s Union cavalry and Wharton’s Confederate cavalry onto the table, as well as part of Breckenridge’s Confederate division that starts the game off-table in Rich’s original scenario.

To build the terrain, I’m using 2’x2′ high-density polystyrene boards (the product is called MD-FRA) which I get from a manufacturer in the UK by the name of Eccleston & Hart, who provide an excellent product, very cheaply and very quickly.  They also put a few extra boards in the pack to act as ‘buffers’ against damage in transit, which can also then be used to make scenery. 🙂

The boards arrived in the form of a ‘Black Monolith’…

I’m using two thicknesses of polystyrene board; the base-boards are 20mm thick and the top-layer is 10mm thick.  I cut the rivers out of the 10mm boards and then glue them onto the baseboards using PVA glue:

It needs to be emphasised at this point that this is a job that requires a lot of space and can get VERY messy!  Thankfully we’ve had a long period of unseasonably dry and warm weather here in normally-soggy Wales, so I was able to do it all in the garden.  Mrs Fawr very unkindly took some photos of me in action and clearly photoshopped out my hair (obviously)…

Oh and I had ‘help’…

After ungluing the dog, the next stage was to mark out the position of roads, railway and hills:

Then the messiest stage of all; cutting out the hills, smoothing them off with a sanding-block, gluing them on to the boards and then using the sanding-block to carve out the roads and fords:

The next stage will be some terrain-detailing in the form a rocky outcrop (the ‘Slaughter Pen’) in the centre of the table and some hasty Confederate breastworks.  Once those are done I’ll paint the whole board with PVA and coat it in fine sand for a bit of texture (I find that it also adds toughness and rigidity to the boards) before painting and flocking.

In the meantime I’ve also been making good progress on the figure-painting front, with three Union infantry brigades completed:

Lastly, I’ve painted a command base for Morton’s special Pioneer Brigade (posed here with some of the infantry from the last photo).  This brigade was formed from the massed regimental pioneers from all the regiments of the Army of the Cumberland.  The Pioneers didn’t carry regimental colours, but a flag (probably the brigade headquarters flag) is recorded for them later in the war and that’s good enough for me…

With the glorious weather now starting to break, I’m very pleased to report that the biggest terrain jobs are now complete.  As the weather gets colder and wetter I can do all the painting and flocking indoors, one board at a time.  However, the initial cutting, carving and gluing phase always needs a lot of space in order to lay out the full map and check the alignment of roads and rivers, but that’s now done! 🙂

Posted in 10mm Figures, American Civil War, Fire & Fury (Brigade), Games, Scenery, Warfare (Show) | 15 Comments

‘Hannover Siegt, Der Franzmann Liegt’: My 15mm SYW Hanoverian & German Allied Army (Part 2)

As discussed last time, I’m booked to put on a 10mm American Civil War game at Warfare 2021 in November, so I’ll have to put my 15mm Seven Years War project on hold for the moment while I paint a load more Blue & Grey and build the scenery.  However, I did this week manage to finish off all the Hanoverian infantry in my lead-pile before moving on to the ACW.  Once Warfare is out of the way I’ll come back to this army to do the cavalry, artillery and generals and with luck I’ll be able to play a French v Allied SYW game in early 2022.

In Part 1 of this series, I mentioned that I’m building a ‘Western Allied’ army for the Seven Years War.  This British-funded army was mainly Hanoverian, though also included contingents from Great Britain, Brunswick, Hessen-Kassel, Schaumburg-Lippe and Prussia.  I’m using the order of battle for the Battle of Minden as my immediate ‘to do’ list and have already completed the British infantry contingent for that battle (i.e. Von Spörcken’s 3rd Column, shown above), as well as the Hanoverian Foot Guards, the Sachsen-Gotha Regiment and Von Scheele’s Hanoverian Brigade from the Prince of Anhalt’s 4th Column.

Above:  I’ve now completed the three battalions of Wissembach’s Brigade, which formed the second line of the Prince of Anhalt’s 4th Column at Minden, so here’s the whole formation in all its glory.  Scheele’s Brigade (which I covered in Part 1) forms the first line, while Wissembach’s Brigade forms the second line.

Above:  Prince Carl Leopold of Anhalt-Bernburg is commonly referred to as the ‘Prince of Anhalt’ in most English language accounts, which leads to all sorts of confusion, as there were seemingly dozens of princes of various branches of the Anhalt family (the House of Ascania), including one who at Minden was commanding a brigade on the French side!  Prince Carl Leopold of Anhalt was also known by his family name of von Bährnfeld.

On the eve of the Battle of Minden, Prince Carl Leopold was commanding the 4th Column of the Allied army, consisting of the brigades of Scheele and Wissembach.  However, the Prince proved to be derelict in his duty as General of the Day, when he failed to adequately establish a picquet-line in front of the Allied army.  Consequently, the French were able to form up completely unobserved in the early hours of the morning and even a warning from a group of French deserters failed to stir the Prince into action until it was too late! 

The Commanding General, Prince Ferdinand of Brunswick, later alleged that the Prince of Anhalt had failed to execute his orders to attack.  However, in the Prince of Anhalt’s defence it would seem that no such orders were ever issued by Prince Ferdinand.  Nevertheless, Carl Leopold undoubtedly failed to act on his own initiative and allowed the French to occupy key terrain.  In exasperation at Carl Leopold’s inaction, Ferdinand eventually ordered General Scheele to take command of the Prince of Anhalt’s division and it was therefore Scheele, not the Prince of Anhalt who led the counter-attack to relieve Spörcken’s beleaguered command.

Above:  Prince Carl Leopold of Anhalt-Bernburg held a commission in the Army of Hessen-Kassel and was Chef of the Hessen-Kassel ‘Prinz von Anhalt’ Infantry Regiment.  There was no prescribed uniform for Hessian general officers, so he wears the uniform of his regiment, namely a dark blue coat with red facings and silver lace edging to the lapels, cuffs, cuff-flaps and hat.  As in the Prussian Army, general officers probably had white ostritch feathers along the upper edge of the hat. 

This is a 15mm Prussian general officer figure by Blue Moon (Old Glory).

Above:  Wissembach’s Brigade.  This consisted of three single-battalion infantry regiments; the Hanoverian ‘Stolzenberg’ Regiment, the Hanoverian ‘Estorff’ Regiment and the Hessen-Kassel ‘Erbprinz‘ Regiment.

Above:  The Hanoverian ‘Stolzenberg’ Regiment changed hands several times over the course of the Seven Years War.  From 1756 to 1759 the inhaber was Friedrich Ludwig von Stolzenberg, though shortly after the Battle of Minden, Stolzenberg retired and the title passed to Carl Detlev von Marschalk.  However, Marschalk died in October 1760 and the title changed again to Georg Christian von Craushaar.  Some time after the Seven Years War the regiment was given the designation 4-B.  As discussed last time, many histories of the Seven Years War refer to these post-war regimental numbers (as well as the post-war Prussian and Austrian regimental numbers), even though they were not in use at the time, as it enables the reader to more easily keep track of regiments whose titles kept changing.

Above:  The ‘Stolzenberg’ Regiment had black facings (lapels and cuffs) with white buttons and lace (silver for officers).  However, like the other black-faced regiments of the Hanoverian Army (such as the ‘Reden’ Regiment discussed last time), the waistcoat, coat-linings and flags were of a different colour, which in this case was straw.  Hat pom-poms were red-over-black.

These are Eureka Miniatures 18mm British infantry figures.  I discussed the generic details of Hanoverian infantry uniforms and the differences with British uniforms in part 1.  The flags are by Maverick Models.

Above:  The ‘Stolzenberg’ Regiment had three lace buttonholes on each tail-pocket.  The Regimental Colour was straw-coloured, matching the colour of the regiment’s waistcoats and coat-linings, which are here visible as tail-turnbacks.  The Colour had an intricately-painted scene, showing the seated Greek goddess Athena offering a laurel wreath to an armoured knight on foot, all contained within a large blue laurel-wreath.

Above:  The ‘Stolzenberg’ Regiment’s grenadiers had the usual mitre caps, though these differed slightly from the normal pattern, in that the ‘face’ of the cap was red, rather than the the facing colour (black).  Instead the false ‘flap’ was coloured black and was decorated with the ‘GR’ cypher in white, along with other white lace decoration.  The face of the cap was decorated with more white lace and a large electoral crest badge in white metal.  This was all topped off with a white tuft.

Above:  The rear of the ‘Stolzenberg’ Regiment’s grenadier caps were also non-standard, having a red band instead of the usual facing-coloured band.  This was however, decorated in the standard manner, with white piping and a white metal grenade badge.

Above:  The Hanoverian ‘Estorff’ Regiment actually started the war as the ‘Brunck’ Regiment, having Heinrich Joachim von Brunck as its inhaber.  However, he retired in 1759 and the title passed to Ludolph von Estorff.  The regiment was later assigned the number 12-B.

Above:  The ‘Estorff’ Regiment had grass green as its facing colour and the regiment’s waistcoats and coat-linings were coloured the same, as was the Regimental Colour.  Buttons and lace were white (silver for officers).

These again are Eureka Miniatures 18mm British infantry figures and the flags are again by Maverick Models.  Note that Maverick Models usually refer to the initial name of the regiment, so this one is listed as ‘Brunck’.

Above:  The ‘Estorff Regiment’ had two lace buttonholes decorating each tail pocket.  The Regimental Colour was again decorated with an elaborate painted scene, showing a rocky island in a blue sea, being struck by bolts of lightning coming from grey clouds in an otherwise white sky.  This was then surrounded by a green palm wreath and topped with a blue scroll and crown.  The corners were decorated with crowned ‘GR’ cyphers.

Above:  The grenadiers of the ‘Estorff’ Regiment had mitre caps with the front face, ‘flap’ and headband in the facing colour.  The face was decorated with a large white metal electoral crest, while the flap featured the running horse of Hanover; probably embroidered in white.  The back of the cap was red with white piping and the whole lot was topped off with a white-over-red tuft.

Above:  The Hessen-Kassel ‘Erbprinz‘ Regiment.  The regimental Chef was Prince Frederick, the Hereditary Prince (Erbprinz) of Hessen-Kassel.  In 1760 the Prince succeeded his father Landgraf William VIII of Hessen-Kassel to become Landgraf Frederick II and the regimental title was changed to the 4th Guard (Vierte Garde) Regiment.

Landgraf Frederick II of Hessen-Kassel

Hessian infantry regiments were initially single large battalions, each of ten companies totaling 950 men at full strength.  This therefore translates as a large unit of 16 figures for ‘Shako/Tricorn’ (like the Hanoverians).  Each company included a corps of eight grenadiers, which on campaign would be formed into a detached grenadier company of 80 men and grouped with other such companies to form ad hoc grenadier battalions of variable strength. 

However, in 1760 the new Landgraf Frederick II (who also happened to be a serving Prussian general) reorganised the army along Prussian lines, splitting each infantry regiment into two small battalions of five companies apiece.  The grenadier component was expanded to two full companies.  In wartime the two grenadier companies would now be paired at the start of a campaign with the grenadiers from another regiment, forming one of six permanent, Prussian-style grenadier battalions.

In theory the infantry regiments were each expanded in 1760 by an additional 200 men, but in reality this strength-increase was totally absorbed by the massively-expanded grenadier component and the infantry battalions remained weak.  There was therefore absolutely no tactical advantage gained from splitting the regiments into two battalions and Ferdinand of Brunswick actually commented that it made absolutely no difference if the Hessian regiments fielded one or two battalions.  In wargame terms, I’m therefore happy fielding the pre-1760 16-figure battalions to represent Hessian regiments right through the whole war and don’t plan to paint a separate late-war Hessian army.  I will however, need to add extra grenadiers for the post-1760 army (though I haven’t yet painted any Hessian grenadiers).

Above:  The Erbprinz‘ Regiment initially had dark blue coats with lemon yellow lapels, cuffs, collar, turnbacks and hat pom-poms, with white metal buttons and white lace edging around the lapels, collar and hat.  There were also three pairs of lace buttonholes on each lapel, three buttonholes below each lapel, four buttonholes on each sleeve, three buttonholes on each tail-pocket and two buttonholes wither side of the small of the back.  Waistcoats were lemon yellow, neck-stocks were red and belts were white.  In common with other Hessian regiments, breeches were initially dark blue with white stockings visible above the gaiters (which were black on campaign and white on parade).  At some point during the late 1750s, the breeches changed to lemon yellow, though I’m going with the dark blue ‘look’ for all my Hessian regiments.

These are Eureka Miniatures 18mm Prussian infantry figures and the flags are again by Maverick Models.  Not much is known about Hessian flags of the period, but they didn’t adopt the ‘Prussian’ style (carried during the American War of Independence) until well after the 1760 reorganisations and in most cases, probably not until well after the end of the Seven Years War.  Maverick’s reconstruction of the flags features the cypher of Landgraf William VIII.

Above:  A rear view of the ‘Erbprinz’ Regiment.  Some sources suggest that the turnbacks may have been red rather than yellow.  Hessian drummers are known to have worn reversed colours during the 1740s and early 1750s, but by the time of the Seven Years War had changed to the standard blue regimental coat, with the addition of red and white lace.

With the reorganisation of 1760, the regiment adopted a new uniform to go with the new title.  The facing colour was changed from yellow to rose-pink, the lace edging was removed from the collar and lapels and the number of lace buttonholes was reduced (three pairs on each lapel, a pair below each lapel, a pair on each sleeve and one either side of the back).  The waistcoat and breeches became white.

Ab0ve:  Wersabé’s Hanoverian Grenadier Battalion (shown on the right) forms up alongside Maxwell’s British Grenadier Battalion (shown on the left).  As discussed in my article on the British Army, the Allied grenadiers at Minden were all massed into a single brigade as part of Wangenheim’s Corps and the Hanoverian grenadiers were all massed in a single battalion under the command of one Lt Col Wersabé.  I’ve not found any information on the composition of this battalion, but it was known to be an ad hoc unit, simply formed from whatever grenadier companies were present, apart from those of the Fuβgarde, who were always used as headquarters guards.

Above:  Hanoverian Grenadier Battalion ‘Wersabé’.  As mentioned previously, Hanoverian grenadiers battalions of the first half of the war were ad hoc affairs, formed from whatever was available on a given day.  They were therefore of extremely variable strength and composition and this is therefore a conjectural wargames unit, comprising a figure from each of the six line regiments painted thus far, plus another six selected at random from the nine other regiments present at Minden.  It’s possible that all fifteen regiments were represented and a large 16-figure unit might therefore be more appropriate, but I’ve kept it as a conservative 12-figure unit.

Above:  Hanoverian Grenadier Battalion ‘Wersabé’.  From 1759, the Hanoverians formed three permanent Grenadier Battalions at the start of each campaign, though these proved to be rather weak (roughly half the strength of a line infantry battalion), so in 1760 the strength was fixed at 500 men per battalion.  In 1762 a massive increase in the strength of each regiment’s grenadier company enabled an increase to six grenadier battalions.

Above:  A rear view of Hanoverian Grenadier Battalion ‘Wersabé’.

Above:  The military-minded Count William of Schaumburg-Lippe was nobody’s fool and knew that if his tiny country were to go to war, it would always be as part of a coalition and there was therefore no point in building a balanced army of all arms.  The core of the Army of Schaumburg-Lippe was therefore built around a small though excellent Artillery Corps, serving guns designed by the Count himself. 

Count William of Schaumburg-Lippe

Supporting the guns was a single battalion-sized infantry regiment, titled the ‘Schaumburg-Lippe-Bückeburg’ Infantry Regiment.  This regiment consisted of seven companies, with a theoretical full strength of 800 men, though in reality fielding 675 men (this discrepancy may be due to infantrymen being detached to serve the guns).  At Minden the regiment was tasked as artillery guards, though it fought as infantry in the line of battle at a number of other engagements.

Some sources state that the regiment included two companies of grenadiers, wearing Prussian-style Füsilier caps.  While the Grenadiers certainly existed, they were actually completely separate units, being deployed as headquarters guards and in support of the Schaumburg-Lippe Carabiniercorps engaged in the petit guerre.

Above:  The Schaumburg-Lippe-Bückeburg Regiment had a relatively simple uniform consisting of an unlaced dark blue coat with red Swedish cuffs, turnbacks and collar and white metal buttons.  The hat had white lace edging and red-over-white pompoms with a black cockade (silver lace for officers).  Neck-stocks were red, smallclothes and belts were white and gaiters were black.

These are Eureka Miniatures 18mm Prussian infantry figures.

Above:  By sheer luck, just as I was painting the Schaumburg-Lippe-Bückeburg Regiment, two gentlemen, Boris Brink and Volker Scholz posted their reconstruction of the regiment’s flags on the excellent Kronsokaf website and I was able to adapt their superb drawings into a set of flags that I could print on my laser-printer… Then they changed their designs, so I printed them off again and stuck them on my figures… And now they’ve changed the design again, in line with their latest research! 🙂 

But never mind, I’ll leave these flags as they are! 🙂

Anyway, that’s it for now!  Back to the ACW…

Posted in 15mm Figures, Eighteenth Century, Painted Units, Seven Years War & War of Austrian Succession, Seven Years War British & Hanoverian Armies, Seven Years War Minor German States, Shako Rules | 4 Comments

Demo Game Plans… The Battle of Murfreesboro at Warfare 2021

I’m not sure if I’ve mentioned it previously… but I have the signal honour to be the reigning holder of the trophy for Best Demo Game at the Wargames Association of Reading’s ‘Warfare’ show…  OK, I might have mentioned it once or twice, but I think I got away with it…

That was in 2019, but nobody turned up to challenge me in 2020 (they must have had something else on, or something…), so I’ve kept the trophy by default.  However, Warfare is definitely on this year, at its new venue of Ascot Racecourse over the weekend of 27/28 November, so I finally have to take the trophy back! 🙁 

That said, I’ve decided to mount a robust defence of my title and Mark M has badgered me into doing an ACW game this time, using my collection of 10mm figures and Fire & Fury 2nd Edition rules. 

After much trawling about for scenarios, I’ve settled on the Battle of Murfreesboro (a.k.a. Stone’s River), which took place on 31st December 1862 in Tennessee.  The battle features in both the 1st and 2nd Editions of Rich Hasenauer’s ‘Great Western Battles’ scenario book for Fire & Fury and was a hard-fought engagement, infamous for having the highest casualty-rate (as a percentage of the combatants engaged) of the war.  A few people have recommended it as their favourite battle to wargame and specifically as their favourite Fire & Fury scenario, so it seems a good bet.  The terrain is also fairly straightforward and once built should all fit in the back of my car (a critical design feature)! 🙂 

As I’m using 10mm figures with an altered ground-scale, I’m able to include a larger portion of the battlefield on an 8×6-foot table.  This means that I can have some of the off-table Confederate reinforcements actually on the table at the start and can also include the little cavalry action that took place on the flank of the battle.  I’ve therefore re-drawn Rich Hasenauer’s original scenario map at my altered scale (1 inch in the rules becomes 20mm in my version, so distances are reduced by 20% and I can get more map on the available table-space). 

Here’s my revised version of the scenario map.  As I’m able to fit more of the battlefield onto my 6×8-foot table, Zahm’s Union cavalry brigade and Wharton’s Confederate cavalry brigade are now both on the table, along with most of Breckenridge’s Confederate division:

I’m going to use the same construction method as last time; namely 2-foot squares of high-density polystyrene with terrain features such as rivers cut out of a thinner layer of polystyrene that will then be glued on top.  This is far easier and looks a lot better than trying to cut rivers etc out of the base-board itself.  Here’s what the terrain for my previous game looked like in its ‘raw’ unpainted state, with the river-valleys and trenches cut out of the top layer, which was then glued down onto the base layer:

Last time I used 25mm thick base-boards, with 12mm thick boards glued on top, but this time I’m going with 20mm base-boards and a 10mm top-layer, then more 20mm boards to make the hills.  

Although the battlefield wasn’t covered in snow, it was still very much a winter battlefield, being fought on New Year’s Eve.  I’m therefore going to use muted, wintry/dead shades of Woodland Scenics flock for the grass, farmland and woodland areas. 

I’m also going to use a lot of bare tree armatures (again by Woodland Scenics) for the woodland.  Instead of using bases, the trees will be ‘impaled’ on sewing needles and these can then be stabbed into the terrain-boards.  This doesn’t damage the boards and does look very effective, as the trees blend seamlessly into the terrain, as can be seen in this shot of the Cassinga game:

In terms of troops, I’m using my own collection of Pendraken 10mm figures.  I thought I already had enough, but needed ‘a few bits and pieces’… I now suddenly find that I have a packed painting-schedule from now until November! 

Strictly speaking, both sides would have been very much in ‘winter mode’, with the Union troops in particular being equipped with greatcoats, as shown in the picture above.  The Union Army in the Western Theatre also tended to wear slouch-hats alongside the ‘classic’ peaked blue forage caps, which can also be seen above.  However, I don’t plan to make specific ‘winterised’ or ‘westernised’ armies, as that way lies madness, so my existing troops will have to do! 

That said, as my existing Confederate army is geared toward the Army of Northern Virginia at Gettysburg, the flags are almost all of the classic Confederate ‘Battle Flag’ type, which was hardly used in the Western Theatre at this time.  I’m therefore making a stack of new brigade command stands, divisional leaders and corps leaders for my Confederates, featuring the various designs of flag that were used by the Army of Tennessee.  I should mention at this point that Leon at Pendraken very kindly did a special order for me of thirty cavalry standard-bearers, for use as headquarters flag-bearers.  Thanks Leon! 🙂 

Regiments within the same division tended to have the same design, so here’s a flag-sheet I’ve knocked up which will hopefully make the Confederates look rather more in keeping with the Western Theatre (below).

My Union regiments don’t need any alternate flags, though I am going to make a new command stand for Morton’s special Pioneer Brigade, featuring a blue & white flag with crossed axes that was recorded as being used by the Pioneers of the Army of the Cumberland some time later (below).

In terms of senior commanders, I need a Union army leader base for General William Rosecrans, commanding the Army of the Cumberland and featuring the headquarters flag of the Department of the Cumberland, which was the Stars & Stripes, though with ‘D.C.’ at the centre of the stars and an eagle superimposed on the stripes (below).  This flag probably postdated the Battle of Murfreesboro, but what the hell…

I’d also like to do some theatre-specific Union corps and divisional leader stands, but the organisational history is slightly complicated and the details of flags are pretty vague.  Here’s all the information I’ve got…

The Army of the Cumberland had been formed in October 1862 from the former Army of Ohio and at the same time was confusingly also designated as the Union Army’s XIV Corps, consisting of a whopping TWELVE divisions!  The Army of the Ohio had been divided into three unofficial corps, numbered I, II & III.  However, these were now re-named as ‘Grand Divisions’ or ‘Wings’, designated ‘Right’ (the old I Corps, under Alexander McCook), ‘Left’ (the old II Corps, under Thomas Crittenden) and ‘Centre’ (the old III Corps, under George Thomas). 

Neither the former corps of the Army of Ohio or the new Grand Divisions appear to have been given headquarters flags, which is rather boring from a wargamer’s perspective… However, in January 1863 (roughly a week after the Battle of Murfreesboro), the Grand Divisions were given formal Army Corps designations by Washington; McCook’s ‘Right Wing’ became the new XX Corps, Crittenden’s ‘Left Wing’ became the new XXI Corps and Thomas’ ‘Centre Wing’ retained the XIV Corps designation.  So I thought I might paint some commanders for the XIV, XX & XXI Corps, as even though they’re anachronistic for Murfreesboro, they’ll give it a Western flavour and will come in handy for later Western battles such as Chickamauga…

While the Army of the Cumberland doesn’t appear to have standardised its badges and headquarters flags to quite the same degree as the standardisation that happened in the Army of Potomac during May 1863, Rosecrans did apparently issue some direction on the design of flags as part of his General Order No.91.  However, the only part of this order I’ve managed to find online just covers the subject of hospital flags. 

McCook’s XX Corps HQ certainly had a headquarters flag at the Battle of Chickamauga in September 1863 (shown above), which was apparently blue with a gold or black eagle and gold fringe (light shining through the flag in the photo above makes it look pale).  I can’t find anything out about the divisional HQ flags.  In 1864, XX Corps absorbed the remnants of the XI & XII Corps and adopted the five-pointed star badge and HQ flags used by XII Corps under the Army of the Potomac.  

In 1863, XIV Corps HQ is known to have used a flag identical to McCook’s flag above, though with ’14’ at the centre.  Rosecrans’ General Order No.177, dated 1st August 1863 states that the divisional HQs of XIV Corps had previously used bright blue flags with black stars (the number of stars equaling the number of the division), but that they were now to be changed to dark blue flags with with white stars.  The stars were arranged vertically near the hoist.  XIV Corps changed its flags twice again before the end of the war.

XXI Corps was known to be using a system of red, white and blue horizontally-striped flags by September 1863.  The Corps HQ flag had a black eagle in the centre with ’21’ in a shield on the eagle’s breast (right).  The three divisional HQs didn’t have the eagle, but instead had either one, two or three black stars near the hoist.  The corps HQ flag had a gold fringe, while the divisional HQ flags did not have a fringe.

I can find the flags for XXI Corps available to download online, but nothing for XIV Corps or XX Corps for that period, though later flags are available and I do already have the staff for XII Corps, which could be used for XX Corps from 1864.  Or I could paint some new flags based on the descriptions for 1863… Decisions, decisions…

[Edited to add:] The Black Monolith of polystyrene has arrived!  Let terrain-building commence…

Posted in 10mm Figures, American Civil War, Fire & Fury (Brigade), Games, Warfare (Show) | 6 Comments

‘Hannover Siegt, Der Franzmann Liegt’: My 15mm SYW Hanoverian & German Allied Army (Part 1)

“Hanover wins, the Frenchman lies down.”

As mentioned recently, I’m presently building a British-Hanoverian-German Allied army for the Seven Years War, using the order of battle for the Battle of Minden 1759 as my initial ‘To Do’ list.  Having finished the British infantry, I’ve now moved on to the Hanoverians, by way of some other allied contingents.

Hanoverian Infantry Uniforms

At first glance, Hanoverian infantry uniforms look identical to the British, but there were quite a few subtle and not-so-subtle differences and I know a few people who have used Prussian and/or Austrian infantry figures instead of British infantry figures to represent Hanoverians.  Eureka don’t do specific Hanoverian figures and none of the available options are perfect, but the big cuffs with deep v-shaped slashes, the voluminous coat-tails, the buckled cross-belts and the officers with sashes over the shoulder make British infantry the nearest match (I can live with the belly-boxes).

Button and Lace Colouring: In the British Army, only the officers (and sometimes the NCOs) followed the regimental ‘metal’ colour; either silver or gold.  The rank-and-file always had white metal buttons and white hat-lace, regardless of regimental ‘metal’, while the coat-lace followed a regimental pattern and colouring, which was often quite intricate.  In the Hanoverian Army, the buttons of all ranks followed the regimental ‘metal’ colour and the other ranks’ lace on both hat and coat was either plain yellow or white accordingly.

Lace:  Hanoverian coats and waistcoats were initially laced very heavily, in much the same manner as the British.  However, in 1759 they removed all the lace from the waistcoat as well as all the lace edging from lapels, cuffs, cuff-flaps and pockets, plus around one-third of the buttonhole lace, leaving only three pairs of buttonholes on each lapel, a pair of buttonholes below each lapel, one buttonhole in the top corner of each lapel, two buttonholes above each cuff and two or three buttonholes on each tail-pocket.  From an aesthetic point of view, this does make the facing colours of Hanoverian units really stand out when compared to the British, whose heavy lace tends to blur out the facing colours.

Waistcoat:  British waistcoats were invariably coloured red and were heavily laced, but Hanoverian waistcoats were usually coloured to match the regimental facing colour and in 1759 they removed all the lace.  A few Hanoverian regiments (mainly those with black facings) had waistcoats of a different colour.

Breeches & Gaiters:  In the British Army breeches were usually red (blue for Royal regiments).  In the Hanoverian Army they were invariably buff.  They were also described as ‘Chamois’ or ‘Straw’, though were a deeper yellowy shade than the ‘straw’ facings.  The Hanoverians also seem to have used white canvas gaiters for all forms of dress, including campaign dress, whereas the British adopted darker colours for campaign dress (settling on black by 1759), retaining white gaiters purely for parade dress.

Hats:  As mentioned above, Hanoverian hats were laced according to button colour.  The cockade was black.  Unlike the British, Hanoverian hats were decorated with three small very pompoms; one above the cockade and one at each side-corner.  Although British infantry figures don’t have these decorations, their small size meant that I found it easy enough to simply represent them by adding a blob of paint of the appropriate colour at the top of the cockade and in the corners of the hat.  A sprig of oakleaves (or other greenery) was also often added as a field-sign, but these would not have been universal (certainly not in winter!), so I’m not bothered if it’s not there.

Equipment:  Personal equipment was much the same as the British, consisting of a pale buff leather cross-belt buckled at the front, a buff waistbelt and a black cartridge box.  However, unlike the British, all companies were armed with a ‘hanger’ (short sword) and not just the Grenadiers.  They also don’t appear to have used belly-boxes like the British, which is a pain when using Eureka British figures!.  The lack of a hanger on the figures isn’t obvious, but the belly-box is impossible to hide and I just have to live with it.  However, Hanoverian muskets were banded, so the wrongly-banded musket on Eureka’s British infantry actually fits! 🙂

Grenadier Distinctions:  Like the British Grenadiers, Hanoverian Grenadiers wore mitre caps and brass match-cases on their cross-belts as a mark of their élite status.  In most cases the caps roughly conformed to the British theme, having the front-piece and headband in the facing colour, the ‘bag’  in red and the piping and tuft in the lace colour.  However, some regiments diverted from that theme, having the front-piece and/or band coloured red instead of the facing colour.  Some regiments decorated their caps with a lot of metalwork, with at least one regiment having a Prussian-style all-metal front-piece.  Also note that while the British Grenadiers adopted shoulder ‘wings’ during the early 1750s, the Hanoverians do not appear to have followed suit.

Officers’ & NCOs Distinctions:  Hanoverian officers followed the general theme described above, though with expensive metallic gold or silver lace.  A yellow sash was worn over the right shoulder and a gorget was worn at the throat (which was gold for all regiments).  Hanoverian officers would also be clean-shaven, while the rank-and-file (unlike the British) had moustaches.  Hanoverian NCOs didn’t wear sashes like their British counterparts, but wore straw-coloured gloves and carried polearms as their ‘badge of office’.

Drummers’ Livery:  Hanoverian drummers, unlike their British counterparts, did not wear reversed colours.  Instead they wore the standard regimental uniform, with the addition of facing-coloured ‘swallows’ nests’ on the shoulders and lace decoration down the sleeves.  They did not have ‘false sleeves’ on the back of the coat.  They also wore standard hats and did not wear the short mitre cap worn by British drummers (grenadier drummers presumably wore standard grenadier mitre caps).  I’ve therefore used Prussian drummers for my Hanoverians.  Drums were brass, often decorated with the Badge of Hanover and with hoops painted in diagonal stripes of red and the regimental facing colour.

Above:  The Foot Guards (Fuβgarde) Regiment.  This regiment was unique in the Hanoverian Army for having two battalions, though after the war the line infantry regiments were also paired up to create two-battalion regiments.  As discussed last time, at the Battle of Minden, the Hanoverian Foot Guards were grouped with the British infantry under the command of Lord Spörcken’s 3rd Column.  The Hanoverian ‘Hardenberg’ Regiment also somehow became attached.  This combined force carried out an astonishing unsupported attack against the French army and then ripped the heart out of the French cavalry counter-attack.  The Foot Guards and ‘Hardenberg’ Regiments captured numerous French cavalry standards during the action. 

Above:  The Foot Guards Regiment had dark blue facings and waistcoats with yellow lace and ‘metal’.  Pompoms were yellow-over-white.  I haven’t painted any grenadiers for this regiment, as they were perpetually assigned to the security of headquarters and baggage and were never assigned to a combined Grenadier Battalion in the field.  

All Hanoverian infantry regiments carried a Colonel’s Colour of a standard pattern, which consisted of a white field, with the Arms of Hanover on the obverse and the Arms of George II on the reverse, with a crowned GR cypher in each corner on both sides.  This was paired with a Regimental Colour, which in the case of the Foot Guards was a white field with the Badge of Hanover and crowned GR corner-cyphers on both sides.  However, I’ve no idea if the regiment had a single Colonel’s Colour carried by the 1st Battalion (German-style) or if each battalion had a Colonel’s Colour (British-style).  I’ve opted for the British style, with each battalion having a Colonel’s Colour and a Regimental Colour.

Above:  A rear view of the Foot Guards Regiment, showing the obverse of the Colonel’s Colours (note that the central device is now the Running Horse badge of Hanover rather than the Royal Arms).  The tail pockets each have two lace buttonholes.

Above:  The ‘Sachsen-Gotha’ Infantry Regiment started the Seven Years War as the major part of the Army of the Duchy of Sachsen-Gotha, though was organised along Hanoverian lines.  On 15th April 1757 the regiment was placed under Hanoverian command as an auxiliary regiment,  paid for by the British, though still formally belonging to the Duchy of Sachsen-Gotha.  The regiment at this time wore white coats with green facings and waistcoats, with white lace and metal.  However, on 25th January 1759 the regiment was formally transferred to the Hanoverian Army and received new red coats, still with green facings and white lace & metal.  The old white coats were turned into new waistcoats and so this regiment was one of the few whose waistcoat did not match the facing colour. 

At Minden the regiment acted as artillery guards with Major Haase’s 2nd Column.  After the war the regiment became half of the 9th Infantry Regiment, being designated 9-A.  As with many Seven Years War armies, the post-war regimental numbering system is often used anachronistically in histories, as it’s often easier than using regiment names which often changed (although as it happens, ‘Sachsen-Gotha’s regimental title never did change).

Above:  As discussed above, the ‘Sachsen-Gotha’ Infantry Regiment had green facings that are actually described as dark green.  However, artistic depictions often show them wearing quite a bright shade and that’s reflected in this Regimental Colour by Maverick Models.  I’ve therefore given them a middling shade of green, so that the flag doesn’t look too far removed from the facing colour!  Lace and metal was white and the pompoms were red-over-green.

Above:  A rear view of the ‘Sachsen-Gotha’ Infantry Regiment.  Note that the tail-pockets had two lace buttonholes.  The regimental colour featured a lion holding a sword in its paw, surrounded by a laurel wreath, with a white scroll above.

Note that Hanoverian battalions were very strong, typically fielding over 800 men (over 1,000 for the two ‘New Battalions’) and considerably stronger than their British and French counterparts.  Consequently, I’ve done these as 16-figure units (like Austrians) rather than the usual 12 figures typical of British, French and Prussian battalions in the field.

Above:  A Grenadier of the ‘Sachsen-Gotha’ Infantry Regiment.  Although they typically had much stronger battalions than the British, the Grenadier ‘corps’ of a Hanoverian battalion was far weaker, with only 65 men, equating to roughly a single figure in game terms (it wasn’t strong enough to be termed a ‘Company’).  In the early part of the war the Hanoverian Army just created ad hoc grenadier battalions from whatever was at hand (like the Austrians) and these varied wildly in strength from around 200 men to over 1,000 men.  From 1759 onward, three permanent Grenadier Battalions were formed for the duration of each campaign, though these were weak units, numbering only 400-500 men at the very most.  I think I’ll rationalise this for campaign purposes as two ‘normal-sized’ 12-figure units (I’ve encountered the same problem with the Swedish Army in Germany; four grenadier battalions, but each only 300-350 men strong).

Above:  The brigade of Major General Johann Daniel Victor von Scheele (also spelled ‘Schele’ in many sources) formed the first line of the 4th Column, which was in turn commanded by Lieutenant General Prince Carl Leopold of Anhalt-Bernburg.  The brigade consisted of three Hanoverian infantry regiments; ‘Scheele’, ‘Reden’ and ‘Hardenberg’.  However, as mentioned above, the ‘Hardenberg’ Regiment somehow managed to get itself entangled with Spörcken’s column during the approach march and was sucked into Spörcken’s attack. 

With Spörcken heavily engaged and seemingly about to be be overrun by French cavalry, Prince Ferdinand of Brunswick (the C-in-C of the Allied armies) ordered Scheele to take his remaining two battalions, as well as those of Wissembach’s brigade in the second line (the Hanoverian ‘Stolzenberg’ and ‘Estorff’ Regiments and the Hessian ‘Erbprinz Friedrich’ Regiment) in an effort to relieve Spörcken’s right flank, which was in danger of being turned (it’s not clear what the Prince of Anhalt was doing at this moment or why he’d just had his entire division handed over to Scheele!).

In the event, the French cavalry struck Spörcken’s left flank, not the right, yet it made little difference as the magnificent British and Hanoverian infantry held their ground until Wutginau’s Hessians stabilised the situation.  This remarkable action was one of the most celebrated infantry actions of the 18th Century and is still commemorated every 1st August by the successors of the British regiments under Spörcken’s command.

Above:  The ‘Scheele’ Infantry Regiment.  This regiment had actually been titled titled ‘Fabrice’ until 1757, when the former inhaber (Colonel-Proprietor), Colonel Georg Philipp von Fabrice retired and the regiment was passed to Major General Johann Daniel Victor von Scheele.  After the war the regiment became half of the 2nd Infantry Regiment, being designated 2-B.

Above:  The ‘Scheele’ Infantry Regiment had straw-coloured facings and waistcoats with white lace and metal and red-over-yellow pompoms.

Above:  A rear view of the ‘Scheele’ Infantry Regiment.  This regiment had three lace buttonholes on each tail-pocket.  The Regimental Colour matched the facing colour and featured piled trophies of war, surrounded by a laurel wreath.

Above:  A Grenadier of the ‘Scheele’ Infantry Regiment.  Note that for some reason, this regiment was one of a few which didn’t use its regimental facing colour for the front-piece of the mitre cap, instead using red.  The rear headband was coloured straw, however.

Above:  The ‘Reden’ Infantry Regiment.  At the start of the war this regiment was titled ‘Knesebeck’ for its then inhaber, Ernst Friedrich von dem Knesebeck, but the regiment was passed in 1758 to Johann Wilhelm von Reden, who owned it for the rest of the war.  The regiment was designated 3-A in the post-war numbering system.

Above:  The ‘Reden’ Infantry Regiment had black as its facing colour, with white lace and metal and black-over-red pompoms.  However, Hanoverian regiments with black facings invariably had waistcoats and coat-linings of some other colour and in this case the waistcoats were white, as were the coat-linings.

Above:  The ‘Reden’ Infantry Regiment‘s white coat-linings are visible here in the form of tail-turnbacks.  Note that this regiment had three lace buttonholes on each tail-pocket. 

As with the waistcoats and linings, regiments with black facings never had a matching Regimental Colour and in the case of the ‘Reden’ Regiment, the Regimental Colour was red.  The central device was an elaborate painted scene, showing an armoured knight standing on green grass, under a blue sky, in front of a fortress tower, from which a volley of flaming shells is being fired.

Above:  A Grenadier of the ‘Reden’ Infantry Regiment.

Above:  The ‘Hardenberg’ Infantry Regiment.  This regiment kept the same inhaber and title throughout the Seven Years War, namely Christian Ludewig von Hardenberg.  It was designated 6-A in the post-war numbering system.  As mentioned above, this regiment became tangled up with Lord Spörcken’s column during the approach-march to Minden and ended up fighting alongside the British infantry and the Foot Guards during their legendary engagement, capturing several French cavalry standards.

Above:  The ‘Hardenberg’ Infantry Regiment had orange facings and waistcoats with white lace and metal and red-over-orange pompoms.  The orange shade is described as ‘light orange, almost buff’.

Above:  The ‘Hardenberg’ Infantry Regiment had two lace buttonholes on each tail-pocket.  The Regimental Colour was orange and featured a lion, holding a curved ‘Falchion’ sword in its paw, standing on piled trophies of war, with a blue scroll above and a flower in each corner.

Above:  A Grenadier of the ‘Hardenberg’ Infantry Regiment.  This regiment’s mitre caps had a lot of white metal decoration on the front; the ‘flap’ was all metal and embossed with the running horse, while the main part of the front-piece featured the Royal Arms in metal.

Models & Flags

The figures above are all 18mm British infantry figures by Eureka Miniatures.  The flags are by Maverick Models.

Posted in 15mm Figures, Eighteenth Century, Painted Units, Seven Years War & War of Austrian Succession, Seven Years War British & Hanoverian Armies, Seven Years War Minor German States, Shako Rules | 1 Comment

The Battle of Lobositz 1756: A ‘Tricorn’ Playtest

As mentioned last time, we recently had a playtest of ‘Tricorn’ (my Seven Years War variant of ‘Shako’ Napoleonic rules).  I decided to go for a historical scenario (The Battle of Lobositz 1756) rather than a random ‘pick-up’ battle, as I felt it would give us a better idea of how the rules fitted the period. 

This was sharply demonstrated during the game set-up and even before Turn 1, when it was realised that having deployed the two armies in their accurately-scaled historical positions, the two batteries of heavy guns, which were both recorded as performing accurate and damaging fire before the main engagement, were both out of range when using the standard ‘Shako’ rules and artillery ranges! 🙂 

I particularly wanted to test an idea for abstracting battalion guns in the game.  This works by increasing the firepower of musketry (4, 5, 6 to hit in Shako terms) while reducing the movement speed for any unit accompanied by a battalion gun (from 4 inches to 3 inches per turn when in line formation).

Another idea (which we always used when playing ‘Shako’ at W.A.S.P. during the 1990s) is one adopted from ‘Napoleon’s Battles’ rules, which is ‘winner losses’ for cavalry.  This inflicts a single casualty on a cavalry unit when they win a mêlée (maximum of one such casualty per turn).  This represents the accumulation of attritional casualties during combat, as well as men detached to escort prisoners, squadrons detailed off to pursue and accumulated fatigue on the horses.  In ‘Shako’ the winners of a mêlée do not suffer losses, but we found that this resulted in endless to-and-fro cavalry battles and/or élite heavy cavalry units simply ploughing their way through a weaker enemy formation and still being as fresh as a daisy at the end of it. 

The incorporation of the ‘winner losses’ rule meant that even élite cavalry would eventually be worn down by repeated charges and could then become vulnerable to the injection of fresh enemy cavalry into the fight.  Additionally for campaign purposes, players were more inclined to keep a portion of their cavalry fresh and in reserve to conduct post-game pursuit of the defeated enemy.  However, Phil and Mike were not over-keen to adopt this concept and were happy with the existing rules for cavalry becoming ‘blown’ for a turn after combat, so I agreed to play the rules as written and see how it panned out.

Above:  The bulk of the Austrian infantry were deployed in ‘ambush’ positions on the left wing, behind the walled parkland, ornamental lakes, fishponds, boggy streams and reed-beds along the valley from Sullowitz to Lobositz.

Above:  Another view of the Austrian left wing.  Löwenstein’s powerful cavalry wing is just off-table, though could be immediately brought on to table (in two columns) once an ADC delivered orders to Löwenstein, whose figure is visible on the table-edge, behind the far flank of the infantry.

Above:  The Austrian right wing consisted of a number of infantry regiments under the command of Wied, plus four grenadier massed battalions, a position battery with pitifully-few heavy guns and Lacy’s recently-arrived division.

Above:  A closer look at Lacy’s command, plus two of the four grenadier battalions.

Above:  A detachment of the Karlstädter-Lykaner Grenzer skirmishes forward of Lacy’s main line.

Above:  Radicati’s Austrian cavalry division forms up behind the sunken road to the west of Lobositz.

Above:  Hadik’s Advance Guard Division (wrongly assumed by Frederick to be a rearguard covering the Austrian retreat), consisting of the massed Carabinier (élite Cuirassier) and Horse Grenadier (élite Dragoon) Companies plus the Hadik and Baryany Hussar Regiments, forms up on the plain and is immediately taken to task by Kyau’s Prussian cavalry, who have been ordered to mount a reconnaissance in force into the valley.

Above:  Draskowitz’s Grenzer, reinforced by some grenadier companies and Hungarian volunteers, harass the left flank of the Prussian army from the steeply-sloped vineyards of the Lobosch.  Frederick is forced to send Bevern with several regiments to eject the Grenzer from the mountain.

Above:  The view from behind the Prussian centre.  As Bevern begins his ascent of the Lobosch on the left, Kleist’s infantry deploy into line, while Schwerin and Katzler deploy their cavalry.

Above:  As Kleist’s line advances past Frederick’s headquarters at Wchnitz, four batteries of heavy guns follow him down the road.  On Kleist’s right, Prince Ferdinand of Brunswick deploys the rest of the Prussian infantry as two more heavy batteries open fire from the Homolka Spur.

Above:  Attended by his staff, Frederick awaits news of the cavalry clash.

Above:  As his few heavy guns open fire on the approaching Prussians, Browne sends an aide with orders for Radicati to support Hadik.  A second aide is dispatched with orders for Löwenstein to bring his cavalry to the centre with great haste!  Neither ADC was seen again and the cavalry remained unmoving…  More ADCS were dispatched…

Above:  Feldmarschall von Katte deploys…

Above:  And so it begins… Hadik and Kyau clash on the plain.  

Above:  Kyau has a massive advantage in terms of quality and quantity and with Radicati’s cavalry still stationary behind the sunken road, Hadik doesn’t fancy his chances against the mass of Prussian cuirassiers!  

Above:  On the Prussian left, the battle is initially even between the Prussian Gelbe-Reitere (so-called due to wearing dark yellow coats instead of the usual pale straw colour) and the massed Austrian Carabinier companies, but the Carabiniers eventually fall back.  Next to them, the massed Austrian Horse Grenadier companies fare badly against the ‘Rochow’ Cuirassiers led by their talented Colonel, Friedrich Wilhelm von Seydlitz.  The ‘Baryanay’ Hussars are similarly beaten off by the Prussian Leib-Carabiniere.  So Round 1 goes to the Prussians.

Above:  But what’s this?!  Having not been engaged in the initial combat, Hadik’s own regiment, the ‘Hadik’ Hussars charge alone and unsupported against the Leib-Carabiniere, who are blown following their combat against the ‘Baryanay’ Hussars!

Above:  Astonishingly, the ‘Hadik’ Hussars throw the Leib-Carabiniere back in disorder!  In their panic, the fleeing Prussian horsemen disorder the ‘Bayreuth’ Dragoons and the ‘Hadik’ Hussars use the confusion to retire back to the safety of their own lines.

Above:  On the opposite flank, Bevern’s infantry come under intense skirmisher fire from the Grenzer hidden among the vines, rocks and stone walls on the steep slopes of the Lobosch.  However, casualties are remarkably light.

Above:  Waiting behind the skirmishing Grenzer is a stronger line of formed troops.  Draskowitz has placed his strongest element, the combined companies of grenadiers and Hungarian volunteers, in the centre with Grenzer formed on the flanks.  The position is very strong and Draskowitz is optimistic that he might be able to hold the position, or at least inflict significant damage on the Prussians. 

Above:  As the battle rages on their flank, Kleist pushes forward onto the plain as the guns move up, ready to deploy and bombard the waiting Austrian line.

Above:  Frederick watches as the battle for the Lobosch unfolds.  He is alarmed that he has misread the situation and that the Austrians now seem to be making a stand, though is confident that they would crumble in the face of his army, just as they had in the last war.

Above:  On Frederick’s right, Moller’s battery on the Homolka Spur hammers away at the Austrian battery, but to little effect.

Above:  Katzler’s Prussian cavalry division forms column to the right and moves around the back of Wchnitz and the Homolka.  Descending through the saddle and into the plain, Schwerin is intending to follow his orders and move across the plain (cleared by Kyau) to engage the Austrian battery and the left flank of Wied’s Austrian infantry.  However, Kyau has not yet cleared the plain…

Above:  As its supporting artillery opens fire on the approaching Prussian cavalry, the Austrian left wing waits for orders… Two ADCs can be seen galloping over the bridge on the west side of Lobositz, yet both fail to reach their destination… A suspicious-looking group of Grenzer deny all knowledge, yet are sporting very nice new pelisses…

Above:  Hadik’s cavalry mill around blown following their previous combats and are in danger of being swept away by the freshly-rallied Prussian cuirassiers.

Above:  However, the Austrian gunners earn their pay as they ignore the incoming fire from the Homolka and accurately bounce some round-shot through the Prussian cuirassiers, stalling their advance.

Above: Things are about to get very hot for the Austrians, however…

Above:  With the Gelbe-Reitere damaged by Austrian guns, the Austrian Carabiniers charge again and throw back the yellow-coated Prussian horsemen, who rally at the foot of the Homolka, disrupting Prince Ferdinand’s attempts to get his infantry into some semblance of order!  The Prussian ‘Rochow’ Cuirassiers meanwhile, utterly rout the Austrian Horse Grenadiers, though this remains the only bright spot for the Prussians at this time, as the heroic Austrian hussars throw back the combined unit of Gensd’armes and Garde du Corps and completely crush the 2nd Battalion of the ‘Bayreuth’ Dragoons!

Above:  On the Lobosch, Bevern’s Prussian infantry finally engage Draskowitz’s main line, though casualties are now starting to mount.  The Grenzer skirmishers have fallen back, though continue to be an irritant. 

[Something I noticed here is that in Shako 2nd Edition, skirmishers can only suffer a single casualty before being removed from play.  In 1st Edition they dispersed on their third casualty, which I prefer, as it makes them much more of an irritant]

Above:  Schwerin’s division of Dragoons and Hussars follows Katzler onto the plain.  Katzler has formed his cuirassier division into line near Sullowitz, though is waiting for Kyau to clear away Hadik’s cavalry!

Above:  On the Lobosch, Bevern has decided to go in with the bayonet rather than engage in a fruitless firefight.  However, his supporting battalions are too far to the rear to provide any meaningful support and the centre battalion (1st Battalion of the ‘Kleist’ Musketeers) is beaten off with heavy losses by the Austrian grenadiers and Hungarian volunteers.

Above:  However, the 2nd Battalion of the ‘Kleist’ Musketeers defeats a battalion of the Karlstädter-Lykaner Grenze and the other Grenzer are starting to waver in the face of determined Prussian attacks.

Above:  Having pushed well forward of the flanking divisions, Kleist completes his orders and halts his infantry as the heavy guns deploy within effective range of Wied’s line.

Above:  Down on the plain, the cavalry battle continues.  The Austrian Carabiniers have pushed too far and are charged by the vengeful Gelbe-Reitere.   The Carabiniers are broken, but Hadik’s astonishing run of luck continues as the ‘Baryanay’ Hussars throw back the ‘Rochow’ Cuirassiers! 

Above:  As the hussars fall back to rally yet again, Hadik (who has now suffered in excess of 50% losses) somehow manages to keep his division in the battle, though his men are now demoralised!  

Above:  The carefully-ordered lines of cavalry from the start of the battle are only a distant memory as the Prussians try to re-order their lines amid the chaos!

Above:  Katzler’s cuirassiers have also now become embroiled in the swirling cavalry battle.  Schwerin’s cavalry also now attempt to deploy onto the plain, but rallying cavalry keep getting in the way.

Above:  It’s not only the cavalry… Prince Ferdinand of Brunswick’s infantry have become utterly disordered by the combined effects of terrain and stampeding cavalry.

Above:  Back on the Lobosch, Bevern’s aggressive tactics have finally broken Draskowitz’s defenders.  However, it wasn’t without cost, especially in the ‘Kleist’ Musketeers.  Although the Grenzer have been beaten off, Bevern still has to fight his way through the difficult terrain of the Lobosch, so it’s going to be some time before his division can join the main attack.

Above:  Draskowitz’s boys run for it!  They had hoped for support from Lacy or Wied, but that support was not forthcoming, due to yet more Austrian command and control problems!

Above:  As Kleist waits for the flanking divisions to move up, his heavy guns hammer Wied’s Austrians.  In the distance, Moller’s battery on the Homolka has ceased fire and Moller is moving his guns forward, to more closely support the attack.

Above:  Here they come again!  As the Austrian ‘Erzherzog Joseph’ Dragoons charge the ‘Bayreuth’ Dragoons frontally, the indefatigable ‘Hadik’ Hussars strike yet again at the left flank of the Prussian Leib-Carabiniere.

Above:  The view from the Austrian side: The green-coated ‘Erzherzog Joseph’ Dragoons clash with the Prussian Dragoons.  The ‘Cordua’ and ‘Stampach’ Cuirassier Regiments finally cross over the sunken road to provide support.

Above:  The view a short while later:  Prince Ferdinand’s attempts to get his infantry into some semblance of order are frustrated yet again by Kyau’s recoiling cavalrymen! 

Note the arrow marker next to the grenadiers at the lower-right; this indicates that the unit is marching in column to its left.  These days I tend to base my SYW units in line on a single base, as they rarely used any other formation unless it was an open column of platoons or companies, whose depth equalled the frontage in line (which is what they’re doing here).  Basing them on a single base also helps to demarcate the separation between units deployed in long lines.  It’s also a lot less fiddly and speeds up movement enormously.

Above:  The view from the other side of the cavalry battle:  The Gensd’Armes and Garde du Corps, having destroyed the newly-arrived Austrian ‘Cordua’ Cuirassiers, are rallying behind Katzler’s fresh cuirassier regiments and the ‘Bayreuth’ Dragoons.

Above:  Pulling back, we can see Radicati’s remaining regiments; the ‘Erzherzog Joseph’ Dragoons and the ‘Stampach’ Cuirsassiers rallying at the sunken road, along with the ‘Baryanay’ Hussars, following their successful charges against the Prussian horse.  However, the ‘Cordua’ Cuirassiers have been swept from the field, Löwenstein is still refusing to move from the left flank and there are still an awful lot of Prussian cavalry on the plain!

Above:  The heroic ‘Hadik’ Hussars, having rallied behind the Lobositz battery, charges yet again!  Kyau’s Prussian cavalry are demoralised and the Gelbe-Reitere are rallying and have already taken heavy casualties.  They are completely swept away by the hussars’ charge!

Above:  Further mêlées on the plain see the Prussian ‘Markgraf Friedrich’ Cuirassiers and ‘Brandenburg’ Dragoons thrown back by the determined Austrian counter-attacks, but the fresh Prussian Leibregiment zu Pferde (here on the left) destroys Radicati’s remaining regiments, leaving the ‘Baryanay’ Hussars feeling very lonely…

Above:  The ‘Hadik’ Hussars rally behind Browne’s headquarters at Lobositz.  At this moment an ADC gallops past to inform Browne that Löwenstein’s cavalry is at last on the move!  However, it’s still going to take some considerable time for the Austrian horse to move from the extreme left flank to the centre.

Above:  With only Hadik’s two weakened hussar regiments left to oppose them, the (mostly) fresh divisions of Katzler and Schwerin can now comply with their orders and engage the left flank of Wied’s line in front of Lobositz.

Above:  Although the ‘Alt-Dessau’ Musketeers are still being arsed about by the milling horsemen, the rest of Prince Ferdinand’s division has finally got itself into some semblance of order and is advancing on Wied.  The grenadiers of Ferdinand’s second line have shifted position to the left and have turned back into line formation (the arrow markers have been removed).  They will now move forward to provide support to Prince Ferdinand’s own regiment in the first line.  The 3rd Battalion of the ‘Alt-Dessau’ Musketeers is similarly shifting to the left, to provide rear-support to the single battalion of the ‘Zastrow’ Musketeers.

Above:  On the left flank of Prince Ferdinand’s first line, the ‘Hülsen’ Musketeers have crossed over the stream to link up with Kleist’s division on their left.  Behind them and just out of shot, the ‘Quadt’ Musketeers have also crossed over the stream and are moving up to provide rear-support.  Seeing the artillery deploying near the culvert, Wied shifts the fire of his artillery onto that point, doing nothing to the Prussian guns, but inflicting casualties on the ‘Zastrow’ Musketeers as the Austrian roundshot bounces through their line.

Above:  On the Austrian right, Wied’s and Lacy’s infantry remain unmoving as orders fail to get through, despite the short distance from Browne’s headquarters! [Phil’s luck in dice-rolling for the hussars was definitely cancelled out by his dice-rolling for the ADCs!]  Wied’s infantry have been hammered hard by the Prussian guns, but now the guns start to fall silent as Kleist resumes his advance and Bevern finally emerges from the vineyards of the Lobosch.

Above:  On the Austrian left, the bulk of the whitecoats remain unmoved (quite literally) by the cavalry battle in front of them.  To their rear, Löwenstein’s cavalry had started to move, but it was all too late.

It was at this point that Phil’s personal morale broke and we ended the game with Browne withdrawing from the field to fight another day.  

Conclusions – The Rules

Even though it was slightly disappointing as a game in that the main infantry lines didn’t come to grips, it did serve the purpose of thrashing out the finer points of the rules and scenario and we had a lot of fun doing it, which were the main points of the exercise.  It was great to have a game after all this time and my thanks to Phil and Mike for such gentlemanly company!  

Anyway, here are the changes to the rules that arose from the playtest:

1.  Artillery/Infantry:  Scrap the idea of incorporating Battalion Guns into the infantry musketry movement rules.  It seemed an interesting idea, but there were too many ‘fudges’ that had to be made.  e.g. If we’re marking units without battalion guns, would that be by unit or by division?  If units enter terrain impassable to artillery, what happens to the guns, etc, etc.

2.  Artillery:  With regard to the above; Add a new class of Battalion Gun artillery to the standard Shako rules with a shorter range, lower firepower and better mobility than the existing Light Foot Artillery class in ‘Shako’.  In previous games it was found that standard Light Foot Artillery was FAR too powerful (using ‘Shako’) when deployed in the quantities that SYW armies fielded (averaging at one gun model (eight actual guns) for every four battalions fielded).  we incorporated a few separate Battalion Guns into this game and found that they worked really well – providing relatively short-range support without dominating the game.

3. Artillery:  Increase the Long Range bracket of Heavy Foot Guns to 36 inches.  Note that historically, there was a bewildering array of gun-barrel weights/lengths and carriage-sizes within each class of shot-weight, leading to many oddities such as Heavy 9pdrs easily out-ranging Light 12pdrs.  I don’t want to add any more artillery classes to the game, but players could keep the standard ‘Shako’ rules for Light 12pdrs and perhaps use the 36-inch range with Light Artillery firepower for Heavy 9pdrs and the like.

4.  Cavalry:  Reinstate the Winner Loss rule for cavalry; At the end of the Mêlée phase, each cavalry regiment that won its mêlée applies a single casualty (even if it fought more than one mêlée in the turn due to a breakthrough charge), representing attritional combat casualties, cumulative fatigue, men detailed off to escort prisoners, etc.  Where more than one regiment contacted one target, only one regiment (of the owning player’s choice) takes the winner loss.  In campaign games these can be counted separately from ‘proper’ casualties and will be reinstated after the battle.

4.  Skirmishers:  Skirmishers take three hits before dispersing, as per ‘Shako’ 1st Edition.

5.  ADCs/Messengers:  ADCs travel at a standard rate of 16 inches per turn.  Upon arrival at their target general, they roll 1D6 and apply the following results: 1 = ADC did not get through.  2 = Implementation of the order is delayed by 2 extra turns.  3 = Implementation of the order is delayed by 1 extra turn.  4-6 = Order is implemented as per the standard rules (immediately for divisions on Reserve orders, or in the following turn for all other divisions).  ADCs are ‘teleported’ back to the Army HQ and may be used again on the following turn.

Conclusions – The Scenario

1.  Battalion Guns:  In accordance with the changes to Battalion Gun rules above, delete the ‘Very Light Guns’ (these were our playtest Battalion Guns) and add the following numbers of Battalion Guns (in brackets) to each of these divisions: Bevern (2), Kleist (1), Ferdinand (2), Wied (2), Lacy (2), Stahremberg (2) & Kolowrat (3).  N.B. Lacy’s number includes Draskowitz’s guns.

2.  Orders & ADCs:  The limits on orders available to the Austrians at the start of the scenario seems too restrictive.  However, simply allowing the Austrians to do whatever they want from the start will almost certainly result in a general advance as they use their superior numbers of infantry to simply bottle in and defeat the Prussians.  It’s worth remembering that the Austrians started this battle in ‘ambush’ positions, in a foggy valley-bottom, with very little clue about Frederick’s strength or intentions and were waiting for Frederick to come to them.  Phil did have a VERY bad run of luck with his ADCs and using ‘Shako’ 2nd Edition ADC rules meant that statistically they would almost certainly die on a long gallop to the far flank (which all but one did)!  I think therefore that my amended ADC rules will help in this regard, though I am tempted to allow Attack orders to be issued to Lacy and Löwenstein’s divisions from the start, simply in order to allow Lacy to support Draskowitz and Löwenstein to support Radicati & Hadik (as they did historically) before those formations are overrun by the Prussians.

3.  Alternative for Radicati:  For reasons that aren’t clear, part of Radicati’s division was deployed on the flank with Löwenstein.  So as a scenario-balancing option, the Anspach Cuirassiers and the Erzherzog Ferdinand Cuirassiers could be transferred back to Radicati and deployed in the centre, behind the sunken road.

Anyway, that’s all for now!  Sorry for the long wait since the last article, but I’ve got my ‘Tricorn’ rules-notes and Quick Reference Sheets waiting to be posted, along with the first of my Hanoverians, some painting and terrain-building for my forthcoming ACW demo-game and some other bits and pieces besides.

Posted in 15mm Figures, Eighteenth Century, Games, Seven Years War & War of Austrian Succession, Shako Rules | 6 Comments

The Battle of Lobositz 1756: A Scenario for ‘Tricorn’ (SYW variant of ‘Shako’)

At long last, I’ve had a game and not just with myself!!! 🙂

As discussed before, at W.A.S.P. we played a lot of mid-18th Century battles (War of Austrian Succession and Seven Years War) during the 1990s, using our own conversion of Shako Napoleonic rules.  We played a number of large historical refights, including a couple of demo games and I even ran an epic worldwide War of Austrian Succession campaign with multiple players in multiple countries (God what I would have given for e-mail back then…). 

The original version of Shako actually included a Seven Years War variant, but I didn’t like it at all and so wrote my own.  I dug it out again last year following a Napoleonic game with Phil using Shako 2nd Edition and tweaked a few things, added a few things before having a solo playtest.  That (along with some ideas provided by Shako’s authors and my mate Phil) provided more food for thought and the rules were tweaked again in time for our playtest game.  Although the rules have Shako at their core, we now refer to our version as ‘Tricorn’.

As neither Phil or Mike have played a Seven Years War game before, I thought it might be appropriate to start with the first major European battle of the war, the Battle of Lobositz.  I’ve actually fought this one a few times before, as we ran it as a demo game around the UK show circuit in 1996 or thereabouts, where it won a couple of Best of Show prizes.  It’s an interesting battle, not least because it was tightly constrained by the terrain and not at all like the ‘line them up and charge’ caricature of 18th Century battles.  It also came very close to being Frederick’s first defeat.

Historical Background

Frederick II

By the 1750s, King Frederick II of Prussia‘s position was looking increasingly precarious.  Empress Maria Theresa of Austria had never recognised Prussia’s seizure of Austria’s northern province of Silesia during the War of Austrian Succession, while King George II of Great Britain viewed Prussia as a French proxy and was suspicious of Frederick’s intentions toward George’s Hanoverian lands.  Britain also whipped up Russian suspicion over Prussian intentions in Poland and Lithuania and in 1755 managed to bring Empress Elizabeth of Russia into the growing anti-Prussian coalition.

However, in a remarkable piece of diplomacy, Frederick managed to not only convince George of his good intentions toward Hanover, but also managed to forge an alliance between their two countries, which was formalised at the Convention of Westminster in January 1756.  This British volte-face incensed both the Austrian and French courts, who put aside centuries of mutual enmity to form a new anti-Prussian alliance in the Treaty of Versailles of May 1756.

With Austria, France and Russia all slowly mobilising for a joint assault in 1757, Frederick decided decided that he was not going to just sit and wait for them to attack at a time and place of their choosing.  Quickly mobilising his own army, in August 1756 Frederick launched a pre-emptive strike on the Electorate of Saxony, having suspected that they were secretly a part of the anti-Prussian coalition.  He suspected correctly; Saxony had secretly agreed to expand its army from 18,000 to 40,000 men for the attack on Prussia.

Almost the entire Saxon Army had concentrated in a strongly-fortified camp at Pirna and Frederick had no choice but to besiege the camp.  However, spies soon reported an Austrian relief force forming at Prague, so leaving an army to continue the siege, Frederick moved with 28,000 men up the Elbe to block any Austrian advance.

Browne

The Austrian Field Marshall Maximilian Ulysses Count von Browne had planned to make a demonstration in the Bohemian mountains west of the Elbe and south of Pirna, distracting Frederick’s main army while slipping a relief force down the eastern bank of the Elbe to aid the Saxon escape across the river.  However, having detected Frederick’s move south, he recalled the relief force and concentrated his 33,000 men at Lobositz, where Frederick’s army would emerge from the mountains. 

Early in the morning of 1st October 1756, as Frederick’s army approached Lobositz in thick fog, the Prussian columns came under musket fire from Grenzer concealed among the stone-walled vineyards of the Lobosch; a steep-sided extinct volcano guarding the exit onto the Lobositz floodplain and dominating the Prussian left flank.  Frederick ordered Bevern to take seven battalions and force the Grenzer from the heights.  In the meantime, the leading infantry battalions were coming under fire from an Austrian battery near Lobositz.  Frederick ordered his artillery commander, Colonel Moller to establish a large battery of heavy guns on the Homolka hill near the village of Wchinitz, which dominated the plain on the right flank of the Prussian infantry.

As the fog started to disperse, a few Austrian cavalry could be seen on the plain.  Frederick immediately assumed that Browne must be in retreat and that this was his rearguard.  General Kyau was ordered to take his cavalry, along with that of General Katte, and mount a reconnaissance-in-force, to clear away the rearguard and locate Browne’s main body.

Hadik

As Kyau descended into the valley, the Austrian ‘rearguard’ under General Hadik, consisting of the massed elite companies (Carabiniers and Horse Grenadiers) of the Austrian heavy cavalry, plus the Baryanay and Hadik Hussar Regiments, was initially driven back by the Prussian charge.  However, the Prussian horsemen suddenly found themselves under heavy fire from previously unobserved artillery on their left and right, grenadiers around Lobositz and Grenzer hidden along a sunken road to their front!  As they tried to avoid these new threats, they ran into the boggy ground near Sullowitz, where they came under intense fire from the previously-unobserved Austrian infantry there!  To make matters worse, the Austrian General Radicati was waiting at the sunken road with the Archduke Joseph Dragoon Regiment  and the Stampach and Cordua Cuirassier Regiments, who quickly repulsed the shocked Prussian cavalry.

Gessler

Watching from the Homolka, General Gessler, the overall commander of the Prussian cavalry, stung by a recent rebuke from the King for not acting on his own initiative, immediately ordered every cavalry squadron in the army to move down onto the plain and renew the attack!  Horrified, Frederick is said to have exclaimed “My God, what is my cavalry doing?! They’re attacking a second time, and nobody gave the order!”  

Sure enough, Gessler’s horsemen were shot to pieces and repulsed by the Austrian cavalry, who had now been reinforced by Löwenstein’s seven regiments, brought in from the left flank.  As his defeated horsemen streamed to the rear, Frederick scented defeat and suddenly discovered that he had ‘business to attend to in the rear’…

Bevern

However, the Prussian heavy artillery was doing considerable damage in the centre, where the Austrians were completely out-gunned.  Up on the Lobosch, both sides had been fighting all day and had now run out of ammunition.  In furious frustration, Bevern ordered his infantry to go forward with the bayonet and the attack was completely successful, finally driving back Draskowitz’s Grenzer and Lacy’s regulars and sweeping on down to Lobositz itself.  

As the Austrians barricaded the gates, Colonel Moller ordered his howitzers to direct their fire onto the town, which was soon ablaze from end to end, burning Austrians and Prussians alike.  Prince Ferdinand of Brunswick’s infantry were also now engaged and with all opportunity to relieve the Saxons now long-passed, Browne ordered his army to withdraw.

So as at Frederick’s very first battle at Mollwitz in 1741, a Prussian victory had been snatched from the jaws of defeat by the superlative quality of its infantry.  Nevertheless, it took some considerable effort for Ferdinand and Bevern to convince the King that he had won the first battle of the war!

These orders of battle use the standard format for Shako/Tricorn, with Morale Ratings (MR) shown in square brackets.  Guards and Heavy Cavalry have [6/2], Elite Infantry and Dragoons have [5/2], Line Infantry and Light Cavalry have [4/1] and Poor Infantry and Skirmishers have [3/0].  Note that some units are rated as elite and have a MR one level higher than normal (quite a lot of the Prussian line infantry at this early stage of the war are rated as elite).

Units listed as having 16 figures are rated as ‘Large’ under Shako/Tricorn rules and can therefore absorb an extra hit.

The Prussian Army – King Frederick II

(Excellent – 3 Messengers)

Left Wing – Generallieutenant Prince von Braunschweig-Bevern (Average)

I. Bn/27th ‘Kleist’ Musketeer Regiment (elite) – 12 Figs [5/2]
II. Bn/27th ‘Kleist’ Musketeer Regiment (elite) – 12 Figs [5/2]
I. Bn/7th ‘Bevern’ Musketeer Regiment (elite) – 12 Figs [5/2]
II. Bn/7th ‘Bevern’ Musketeer Regiment (elite) – 12 Figs [5/2]
I. Bn/13th ‘Itzenplitz’ Musketeer Regiment (elite) – 12 Figs [5/2]
II. Bn/13th ‘Itzenplitz’ Musketeer Regiment (elite) – 12 Figs [5/2]
Grenadier Battalion 5/20 ‘Jung-Billerbeck’ – 12 Figs [5/2]
Grenadier Battalion 3/6 ‘Kleist’ – 12 Figs [5/2]
1 Very Light Battery

Right Wing – Generallieutenant von Kleist (Average)

I. Bn/30th ‘Blankensee’ Musketeer Regiment – 12 Figs [4/1]
II. Bn/30th ‘Blankensee’ Musketeer Regiment – 12 Figs [4/1]
I. Bn/17th ‘Manteuffel’ Musketeer Regiment (elite) – 12 Figs [5/2]
II. Bn/17th ‘Manteuffel’ Musketeer Regiment (elite) – 12 Figs [5/2]
I. Bn/36th ‘Münchow’ Füsilier Regiment – 12 Figs [4/1]
II. Bn/36th ‘Münchow’ Füsilier Regiment – 12 Figs [4/1]
4 Heavy Batteries
1 Very Light Battery

Centre – Generallieutenant Ferdinand, Prince von Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel (Excellent)

I. Bn/21st ‘Hülsen’ Musketeer Regiment – 12 Figs [4/1]
II. Bn/21st ‘Hülsen’ Musketeer Regiment – 12 Figs [4/1]
I. Bn/3rd ‘Alt-Anhalt’ Musketeer Regiment (elite) – 12 Figs [5/2]
II. Bn/3rd ‘Alt-Anhalt’ Musketeer Regiment (elite) – 12 Figs [5/2]
III. Bn/3rd ‘Alt-Anhalt’ Musketeer Regiment (elite) – 12 Figs [5/2]
I. Bn/9th ‘Quadt’ Musketeer Regiment (elite) – 12 Figs [5/2]
II. Bn/9th ‘Quadt’ Musketeer Regiment (elite) – 12 Figs [5/2]
I. Bn/5th ‘Alt-Braunschweig’ Musketeer Regiment (elite) – 12 Figs [5/2]
II. Bn/5th ‘Alt-Braunschweig’ Musketeer Regiment (elite) – 12 Figs [5/2]
Grenadier Battalion 17/22 ‘Puttkamer’ – 12 Figs [5/2]
Grenadier Battalion 24/34 ‘Grumbkow’ – 12 Figs [5/2]
I. Bn/20th ‘Zastrow’ Infantry Regiment (elite) – 12 Figs [5/2]
2 Heavy Batteries
1 Very Light Battery

Cavalry Division of Generallieutenant Freiherr von Kyau (Poor)

11th Leib-Carabiniere Cuirassier Regiment – 16 Figs [6/2]
8th ‘Rochow’ Cuirassier Regiment – 16 Figs [6/2]
10th Gens d’Armes Cuirassier Regiment } – 16 Figs [6/2]
13th Garde du Corps Cuirassier Regiment }
2nd ‘Prinz von Preussen’ Cuirassier Regiment (Gelbe-Reitere) – 16 Figs [6/2]
I. Bn/5th ‘Brandenburg’ Dragoon Regiment – 16 Figs [5/2]
II. Bn/5th ‘Brandenburg’ Dragoon Regiment – 16 Figs [5/2]

Cavalry Division of Generallieutenant von Katzler (Average)

5th ‘Markgraf Friedrich von Brandenburg’ Cuirassier Regiment – 16 Figs [6/2]
3rd Leibregiment zu Pferde Cuirassier Regiment – 16 Figs [6/2]
6th ‘Baron von Schönaich’ Cuirassier Regiment – 16 Figs [6/2]
7th ‘Driesen’ Cuirassier Regiment – 16 Figs [6/2]

Cavalry Division of Generallieutenant von Schwerin (Excellent)

4th ‘Katte’ Dragoon Regiment – 16 Figs [5/2]
3rd ‘Truchsess’ Dragoon Regiment – 16 Figs [5/2]
3 Sqns/1st ‘Székely’ (Green) Hussar Regiment – 12 Figs [4/1]

Prussian Breakpoints

Each division must check when it’s losses reach the number of morale points shown below.  The values represent the total Frontal Morale Rating (FMR) of the division in brackets, followed by the divisional test-points of one third, half and two-thirds:

Bevern (40) – 14/20/30
Kleist (26) – 8/13/19
Ferdinand of Brunswick (58) – 19/29/44
Kyau (34) – 12/17/26
Katzler (24) – 8/12/18
Schwerin (14) – 5/7/9

Likewise, the army must check when its losses (in terms of completely broken divisions) reach the levels shown below.  The total FMR level of the army is shown in brackets, followed by the test-points for one-quarter, one-third and half losses:

Prussian Army – King Frederick II (196) – 49/65/98

Prussian Notes

1.  This order of battle bears little resemblance to the theoretical pre-battle orders of battle and is based primarily on where units ended up fighting and under whose command they were fighting (don’t you just love 18th Century armies…).  There are as many different versions of the order of battle as there are accounts of the battle, so this is my best guess.

2.  Kyau is under enforced Attack orders, with a pre-determined command arrow going directly toward the centre of Hadik’s command and pushing on across the centre of the Sunken Road, with the tip of the arrow 6 inches beyond the Sunken Road. This may not be changed, except by a change of order from the King, as per the normal game rules. Note that Katte’s cavalry division was also swept up in the madness of Kyau’s charge, along with the Brandenburg Dragoons from Schwerin’s command, so they have all been combined into Kyau’s command for scenario purposes. This disastrous event was caused by the morning mist, which lingered in the valley after dawn, resulting in Frederick ordering Kyau to mount a reconnaissance in force. As the mist lifted, they came under fire from the Austrian guns and attack from Hadik’s command and the supporting Prussian cavalry also threw themselves into the charge. The mist then lifted completely and the Prussian horsemen suddenly realised that they were in a very sticky situation!

3.  All other Prussian commands may be given any orders at the start of the scenario.

4. Bevern’s command have abandoned their battalion guns in order to get to grips with the Grenzer on the slopes and vineyards of the Lobosch.  Bevern’s battalions therefore fire and move as per the standard rules and may not recover their battalion guns.  Five battalions are deployed in Bevern’s first line, with his remaining battalions being deployed no closer than 12 inches to the rear (they may not therefore provide rear support in mêlée unless they close up).

5.  The two Heavy Batteries under Prince Ferdinand’s command (known collectively as ‘Moller’s Battery’) are already deployed and ready to fire on the Homolka. The remaining batteries are limbered on the road to Kleist’s rear and have yet to be deployed.

6.  Prussian regiments at this time were not numbered and were instead known by the name of their Chef (e.g. ‘Itzenplitz’) or by a historical title (e.g. Leib-Carabiniere) or in the case of combined grenadier battalions, by the name of their Commanding Officer.  However, there was an established order of seniority, which eventually became a formalised numbering system in 1806.  Most histories written after 1806 refer to the regimental number and it does make units easier to identify if they changed their Chef.  It also makes battle maps easier to label!

7.  Some sources identify the hussars as belonging to the 2nd ‘Zieten’ (Leib) Hussars.

8.  The 13th Garde du Corps Cuirassiers were still only a single squadron at this time, so are absorbed into the strength of the 10th Gens d’Armes Cuirassiers with whom they were brigaded.

9.  The Heavy Batteries are classed as Army Guns and do not have any targeting restrictions.  The Very Light Batteries are surplus battalion guns (after one battalion gun has been factored in to each infantry battalion) and must be used to support the division to which they are attached.

The Austrian Army – Feldmarschall von Browne

(Average – 2 Messengers)

Advance Guard – Generalfeldwachtmeister Hadik (Excellent)

Combined Carabinier Companies (Cuirassiers) – 16 Figs [6/2]
Combined Horse Grenadier Companies (Heavy Horse) – 12 figs [6/2]
ii) ‘Hadik’ Hussar Regiment – 12 Figs [4/1]
30th ‘Baranyay’ Hussar Regiment – 12 Figs [4/1]
Detachment, 2nd Banal Grenz Infantry Regiment – Skirmishers [3/0]

Right Wing Cavalry – Feldmarschallieutenant Radicati (Average)

1st ‘Erzherzog Joseph’ Dragoon Regiment – 16 Figs [5/2]
14th ‘Cordova’ Cuirassier Regiment – 16 Figs [6/2]
10th ‘Stampach’ Cuirassier Regiment – 16 Figs [6/2]

Flank Guard – Generalfeldwachtmeister Draskowitz (Excellent)

1 Bn, Karlstädter-Lykaner Grenz Infantry Regiment (formed) – 12 Figs [3/0]
Detachment of Grenadiers and Hungarian Volunteers (formed) – 12 Figs [5/2]
Detachment, Karlstädter-Oguliner Grenz Infantry Regiment – Skirmishers [3/0]
Detachment, Karlstädter-Oguliner Grenz Infantry Regiment – Skirmishers [3/0]
1 Bn, 2nd Banal Grenz Infantry Regiment (formed) – 12 Figs [3/0]
Detachment, 2nd Banal Grenz-Infantry Regiment – Skirmishers [3/0]
Detachment, 2nd Banal Grenz-Infantry Regiment – Skirmishers [3/0]

Right Wing Infantry Division – Generalfeldwachtmeister Graf Wied (Average)

1st Combined Grenadier Battalion – 12 Figs [5/2]
2nd Combined Grenadier Battalion – 12 Figs [5/2]
I. Bn/10th ‘Jung-Wolfenbüttel’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
II. Bn/10th ‘Jung-Wolfenbüttel’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
I. Bn/37th ‘Joseph Esterházy’ Hungarian Infantry Regiment – 12 Figs [4/1]
II. Bn/37th ‘Joseph Esterházy’ Hungarian Infantry Regiment – 12 Figs [4/1]
I. Bn/8th ‘Hildburghausen’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
II. Bn/8th ‘Hildburghausen’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
1 Heavy Battery
1 Light Battery
1 Very Light Battery

Infantry Division of Generalfeldwachtmeister Graf Lacy (Excellent)

I. Bn/36th ‘Browne’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
II. Bn/36th ‘Browne’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
I. Bn/20th ‘Alt-Colloredo’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
II. Bn/20th ‘Alt-Colloredo’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
3rd Combined Grenadier Battalion – 12 Figs [5/2]
4th Combined Grenadier Battalion – 12 Figs [5/2]
Detachment, Karlstädter-Lykaner Grenz Infantry Regiment – Skirmishers [3/0]
Detachment, Karlstädter-Lykaner Grenz Infantry Regiment – Skirmishers [3/0]
1 Very Light Battery

Centre Infantry Division – Feldmarschallieutenant Stahremberg (Poor)

I. Bn/1st ‘Kaiser’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
II. Bn/1st ‘Kaiser’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
I. Bn/33rd ‘Nikolaus Esterházy’ Hungarian Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
II. Bn/33rd ‘Nikolaus Esterházy’ Hungarian Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
I. Bn/50th ‘Harsch’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
II. Bn/50th ‘Harsch’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
I. Bn/17th ‘Kolowrat’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
II. Bn/17th ‘Kolowrat’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
1 Light Battery
1 Very Light Battery

Left Wing Infantry Division – Feldzeugmeister Kolowrat-Krakowsky (Average)

I. Bn/29th ‘Alt-Wolfenbüttel’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
II. Bn/29th ‘Alt-Wolfenbüttel’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
I. Bn/27th ‘Baden-Durlach’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
II. Bn/27th ‘Baden-Durlach’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
I. Bn/11th ‘Wallis’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
II. Bn/11th ‘Wallis’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
I. Bn/47th ‘Harrach’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
II. Bn/47th ‘Harrach’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
I. Bn/49th ‘Kheul’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
II. Bn/49th ‘Kheul’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
I. Bn/35th ‘Waldeck’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
II. Bn/35th ‘Waldeck’ Infantry Regiment – 16 Figs [4/1]
1 Very Light Battery

Left Wing Cavalry – Generalfeldwachtmeister Löwenstein (Average)

15th ‘Anspach’ Cuirassier Regiment – 16 Figs [6/2]
2nd ‘Erzherzog Ferdinand’ Cuirassier Regiment – 16 Figs [6/2]
21st ‘Trautmansdorf’ Cuirassier Regiment – 16 Figs [6/2]
12th ‘Serbelloni’ Cuirassier Regiment – 16 Figs [6/2]
6th ‘Liechtenstein’ Dragoon Regiment – 16 Figs [5/2]
29th ‘Brettlach’ Cuirassier Regiment – 16 Figs [6/2]
8th ‘Carl Pálffy’ Cuirassier Regiment – 16 Figs [6/2]

Austrian Breakpoints

Each division must check when it’s losses reach the number of morale points shown below.  The values represent the total Frontal Morale Rating (FMR) of the division in brackets, followed by the divisional test-points of one third, half and two-thirds:

Hadik (23) – 8/12/18
Radicati (17) – 6/9/13
Draskowitz (23) – 8/12/18
Wied (34) – 12/17/26
Lacy (32) – 11/16/24
Stahremberg (32) – 11/16/24
Kolowrat-Krakowsky (48) – 16/24/36
Löwenstein (41) – 14/21/31

Likewise, the army must check when its losses (in terms of completely broken divisions) reach the levels shown below.  The total FMR level of the army is shown in brackets, followed by the test-points for one-quarter, one-third and half losses:

Austrian Army – Browne (250) – 63/84/125

Austrian Notes

1. Again, this order of battle bears only a passing resemblance to the theoretical pre-battle orders of battle and is based primarily on where units were deployed and under whose command they were fighting (e.g. Wied was sent to command the right wing, leaving his own infantry with Stahremberg and then having a very confused command relationship with Lacy, who in turn had a confused command relationship with Draskowitz! Most of Radicati’s cavalry meanwhile, were placed under Löwenstein’s command).

2. Radicati starts the scenario under Reserve orders, while Hadik and Draskowitz may be given any orders. All other formations must be on Defend orders at the start.

3. Draskowitz’s command does not have any battalion guns.

4.  Austrian regiments at this time weren’t actually numbered, but were instead named for their Inhaber.  The numbering system was introduced in 1769.  However, most histories include the later regimental numbering system as it makes the regiments easier to track through changes of Inhaber and also makes maps easier to label, so I’ve included regimental numbers here.  Roman numerals are used (e.g. ii) ‘Hadik’ Hussars) for those regiments disbanded before 1769.

5.  The Heavy and Light Batteries are classed as Army Guns and do not have any targeting restrictions.  The Very Light Batteries are surplus battalion guns (after one battalion gun has been factored in to each infantry battalion) and must be used to support the division to which they are attached.

Terrain Effects

Note that some terrain effects have been changed for scenario purposes from the standard rules:

* The vineyards of the battlefield were criss-crossed by low stone walls and were an absolute nightmare for the Prussian infantry to fight through.  Any stationary defender therefore gains a +1 cover modifier and a +2 melee modifier if they are defending uphill of an enemy.  Note that the contour immediately above the Lobosch vineyard is classed the same, as it was a rock-strewn, scrubby nightmare.  The uppermost contour of the Lobosch is impassable.

The town of Lobositz consists of three built-up sectors.  All other villages consist of a single built-up sector.  None are prepared for defence.

Deployment & Fog Of War

As so often happens with historical scenarios, the players will often know at least the basic historical outline of the battle.  However, if this is not the case, some ‘fog of war’ (in this instance, quite literally fog) can be added during the deployment and initial order-writing phase:

  1. Deploy the Prussian army as per the map, but for the Austrians, deploy only Hadik’s and Draskowitz’s divisions, plus the Austrian battery in the centre.
  2. Both sides write their orders.  Kyau’s Prussian cavalry must mount an immediate attack order as described in the Prussian notes, though all other Prussian formations may be given any orders.  On the Austrian side, Hadik and Draskowitz may be given any orders, while Radicati is on Reserve orders and the others are on Defend orders.
  3. Once Prussian orders have been written and command-arrows drawn on the Prussian map, the remaining Austrian forces are deployed on the table.

As it happens, during our refight, Phil (playing Browne’s Austrians) had an appalling run of luck with his ADCs when trying to change orders.  We were using the 2nd Edition Shako rules for ADCs, where each ADC rolls on each turn to see what happens to him.  No fewer than four of Phil’s ADCs failed to make it through to their destination, only one ADC successfully delivered an order and the sixth one plodded his way at half-speed (stopping to pick flowers, have a drink at a wayside tavern, chat to passing friends, etc) to the far left flank, only delivering his packet of orders when it was FAR too late to have any effect! 

As funny as this was to us on the Prussian side, it meant that Phil didn’t have much of a game, so in retrospect it may be better to either remove the Austrian order restrictions or simply use the Shako 1st Edition ADC rules, whereby ADCs move at a standard rate to their destination and always get through.

Objectives

To achieve a total victory over the enemy, each side must break the enemy’s Army Morale.

A partial victory can be achieved by the Prussians if they clear the Lobosch AND the town of Lobositz of the enemy, while retaining control of the Homolka, thereby securing their exit from the mountains.  Any other result will be an Austrian partial victory.

Anyway, that’s enough for now!  Next will be a report of our play-test.  That will be followed by my Shako conversion notes and play-sheets for ‘Tricorn’.

Posted in Eighteenth Century, Games, Scenarios, Seven Years War & War of Austrian Succession, Shako Rules | 8 Comments