The Blue General declares the game over and rests on his laurels.It was much too nice a day to be inside today but I slipped in a turn at lunch and watched as Brigadier Zinn rallied his brigade. It was beginning to look like this game might go a full 18 turns and last all week so as evening drew on and the clouds came over, I put away the tiller just a little bit too early for supper and retired upstairs to my games room. Then I slipped upstairs for the decisive initiative roll and then lingered to play the turn. In moments it was all over at the end of Turn 9.
Turn 7 ends.
The Initiative returned to Faraway on Turn 7 and the Bodyguards charged in , breaking the enemy 1st Infantry in a tough fight but being so badly beat up that they had to retire to the board edge. A storm of volley fire and canister sent the 3rd & 4th Infantry reeling backwards as well. Nothing daunted, General Scott and Brigadier Zinn galloped over and managed to rally all three broken units. It was going to take 2 or 3 turns to bring the regiments back to fighting status but at least they were there and sheltered from enemy action. Across the stream, the Blue Guards and Lafeyette Volunteers advanced into the gap.
Turn 8 Brigadier Glasse goes down and the Royals break!
Again Faraway held the initiative but had to spend it rallying troops and filling gaps in the line, preparing for the oncoming storm. It was not long in coming, on the far right the San Carlos cavalry which had crossed over beyond Red's flank charged into Larsen's Lancers fighting a prolonged and bloody melee. In the center, the Blue Dragoons split into troops and began making their way across the stream, reforming on the far side before they could be charged. Beside them the Blue Guards and Volunteers pressed forward screened by skirmishers. Caught in a crossfire between the 5th Infantry firing from the edge of the woods and the Lafayette Volunteers, The 1st Royals were cut to pieces. When Brigadier Glasse attempted to steady them, he was shot from his saddle and soon the battalion was streaming to the rear.
Turn 9 - The end.
Then disaster struck! Oberhilse again stole the initiative and pulled a "Someone had blundered" chance card allowing them to move one enemy unit forward a move. They chose the Green Tigers and drawing them out of their cover, sent them in disorder over the stream. The Tigers converted the move to a charge but were checked by fire from the Grenadiers and then routed by a blast of cannister. On Blue's left, the San Carlos cavalry renewed the fight and both regiments were blown and had to retreat leaving the way open for the Frontier Lancers. In the center, the Blue Dragoons, Kearney at their head, charged into the Princess Charlotte's Dragoons routing them and pursuing into the rallying skirmishers of the 2nd brigade, scattering them. Musketry from the Blue Guards, canister and skirmish fire tore into the 2nd Royals, already battered by their melee with the Guards on the previous turn and the remnants were also forced to retreat in disorder. Finally the Lafayette Volunteers advanced with a cheer and charged the gun that had been canistering them with little effect. The Dover Fusiliers were in close support and 1/2 the battery was saved but the line was in ruins and no troops stood between the Blue Guards and the crossroads, just a broken down steam tractor, towing a deflated balloon, smack dab in the middle of the crossroad. To make matters worse, with both of his units in fierce firefights and showing signs of wavering, Brigadier Topper was also hit by enemy fire.
There was one chance left, if Faraway could rally enough troops they could pull back into the buildings and try to defend them. Blue's cavalry and artillery was in good shape but their infantry had also been badly battered in the fighting. It turned out to be a fat chance as unit after unit ran off the back of the table. There was no hope of resisting for more than a few turns, it was time to save what was left. Pondering how it had gone so wrong so quickly and whether or not there was a way to come back, I looked up and saw that the Blue Commander had made up his mind that it was over and had curled up behind General Scott for a victory nap.
Thoughts on the game in a day or so.