Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Huzzah 2019 Game 2

Home at last! (Stopped to enjoy some family time and not to mention watching GofT finale in good company. (I liked it btw, pretty close to what I had been expecting for a while but that's not relevant here. )

Back to Huzzah!.

Friday night's game was the first ambush scenario from CS Grant's Scenarios for Wargames. This is another old favourite that I have played scores of times and in almost every scale and period. Easy to draw, hard for either side to win. This time the rules were With MacDuff to the Frontier.

Pictures are a bit scarce on this one and pretty low quality due to low lighting and inadequate skill on the part of the cameraman.
The King Michael Pandours begin their long struggle to push back and eliminate the enemy skirmishers

The convoy under Brent and Arofan took a rare and (imho) rash decision to press ahead with the whole escort, leaving the wagons to trundle on alone without an escort. Luckily for them, the ambushers under Eric and Vicky decided to focus on the roadblock.

Throughout the game I tried hard to avoid giving advice to either side but did allow myself to occasionally remind each side of the victory conditions when, as often happens, the fight itself becomes the focus.

A die roll allowed the attackers to spot one the defenders' hidden units so the shooting started early. 

Essentially the attack started off well but as so often happens,  the attackers were unable to resist trying to chase the ambushers through the hills and broken ground. The escort was able to drive back the light troops and almost destroyed them but they were soon out of the battle themselves due to the distance and the slowness of line troops in broken ground.

The escort had trouble deploying in the narrow gap and started to spread out, pushing the ambushers back. The Defenders responded by bringing up their main force.
The fighting in the hills and across the river was fierce and prolonged with wave after wave of cavalry and infantry being thrown back. Even the Grenadiers were unable to save the day. Partly the attacks failed by being launched piecemeal across an obstacle but Fortuna played her role to the hilt as well.
The Pandours were eventually cut up by the enemy light troops, their place being taken by the Blues. The escort cavalry being already badly battered, a new infantry assault was organized to carry the bridge. 

The battle up the road is always hard and usually bloody for both sides if the blocking force is large which it was here. This time the blocking force held.  A draw looked likely.

The Light Infantry who had been driven out of their initial ambush position had eventually moved by the flank towards the road exit and became the defacto escort for the enemy wagons. 

With darkness coming on the wagons were going to have to retreat for a draw......BUT....this is where the ignored victory conditions came in. The ambushers had a battered unit of light infantry that had worked around the flank and were now the closest unit to the unescorted wagons and closest to the escape route.  I awarded Victory to the ambushers since even it the wagons got off table there was no one in position to stop the pursuing light infantry from snapping them up.


  1. It was a tight game; I'll be reusing that scenario more often to supplement the Wagon Train, also from the Green Book.

  2. Ah yes, the convention-game syndrome, when players, much like cats chasing a laser pointer, abandon themselves to their urges and your nuanced game conditions get tossed out the window. Not an issue if everyone has a good time, though (which seems the case).

    1. Well, the scenario gives a condition to win and one to draw. How many start planning for a draw until they realize they're losing? Its like making backups....

      I have met one or two, they tend to make very dangerous opponents.

  3. Very nicely done. Grant's scenario book is an invaluable asset for a wargamer, isn't it?

    1. It is! Saves a lot of developing and testing those original ones can be good if well tested.