The original plan was to hold our 200th Anniversary refight of the Battle of Vitoria on the closest Thursday night to the actual anniversary - 20th June, with the actual anniversary being on the 21st. Pretty close! But it was exam season at Uni, and, not entirely unreasonably, the Uni expected to be able to use its examination rooms for the holding of - exams! Hence we postphoned until yesterday!
|The table set up - the French team have yet to deploy...|
|Taking the waters...an unfortunate Hussar is swept off, to be rescued by a downstream Gunner - how embarrasing!|
The French orbat consisted of 2 Infantry brigades, with one Bn detached to form the Garrison of Gamorra Mayor, a Cavalry Bde complete with light horse battery, and light and heavy foot batteries. After grumblings about my house rules at the Gettysburg game I am now determined to play Black Powder completely untweaked. So all troops stats were directly out of the Albion Triumphant Peninsula supplement. However, I did extend artillery ranges with the simple formula of poundage = max range in feet, and canister is 18". This gave the French 12 Pounders a long range of 12', effective range 6', and the British 9 Pounders an 9' range, which seemed to work well.
The Anglo-Portuguese forces representing the 5th Brigade had 3 Brigades of Infantry, and a cavalry Bde, complete with horse guns.Unfortunately I only have 2 Portuguese units in my 28mm collection, but one of these, the 12th Infantry Regiment Tras os Montes, was to make quite a name for itself this day.
|A British Infantry Bde - 4 Regiments of foot and a skirmish unit (off scouting to the front); Royal Irish, 1st KGL Line, 2/30th, 1/57th. The Irish and Germans painted by Fon's crew at MMPS - highly recommended!|
|79th Foot The Cameron Highlanders - with the 'Fierce Fighters' attribute...|
Meanwhile the British, after a couple of command hiccups, strode forward resolutely...Bryan unwisely accepted Alan's assurances that he was 'a dab hand with the horses', while the rest of us kept straight faces, and was accordingly given command of the British Cav Bde. Perhaps I should have mentioned the Command Value of the Cavalry Brigadier was only 7 earlier! But in true Hussar stylie he recieved a bonus if giving a charge order...So the inevitable occurred:
One of the French Regiments only managed to form a disordered square, so for a while it looked like Alan's rashness might have to be amended to boldness, but eventually the cavalry charge was repulsed.
|The 23rd Foot (Royal Welch Fuzileers) lead the assault|
However these unsuccessful assaults may have had the effect of rattling the French team? At any rate they committed their heavy cavalry reserve...
|20th Ligne charge the 26th Foot (The Cameronians). Not of course to be confused with the Cameron Highlanders..Lord No! Made that mistake once in the Royal Scots mess - thats an hour of my life I won't get back again...|
|Caesar, Dave and Bryan. Alan is tending the boom box. After my 'Sharpe Sounds' CD, which features no less than 5 versions of 'O'er the Hills and Far Away', we listened to his thoughtfully put together album of 1813 music...|
|The second assault - Doing it right! The Black Watch go in the Front whilst the Diehards kick in the side doors, all properly supported - The School of Infantry Chief Instructor would be proud!|
Unfortunately for the French, the British final round of orders went without a hitch for once and the British were across the river to seal a decisive victory! But not everyone was happy:
And so our belated commemoration of Vitoria ended on a note of excitement, and actually it was a thrilling and hard fought game throughout, with more attacks and counterattacks than an attacking and counterattacking thingy that likes to attack and ....
Anyway a great game, which has inspired me to plan more 28mm sized games at the Uni club...
Alan is a far more experience blogger than I, and a semi professional photographer to boot, so may I recommend you check out his account of the battle:
Kapitain Kobold - Vitoria 200