Saturday, September 11, 2021

Once More Unto the Bridge

Well, the terrain was all set up and the last game left me craving a battle with toy soldiers rather than fancy 3d counters, so I swapped out the buildings and bridge then summoned MacDuff and my French Revolution forces for a do over.

1795: Somewhere in Brittany

Teaser: Bitter street fighting as the French take the bridge and move into the town.

General de Brigade St. Michel had been ordered to be in Belmont by nightfall but as his column approached the bridge at Ste Croix, the village was full of Redcoats. A few inquiries led to him detaching a battalion of infantry and his squadron of Hussards de la Morte to outflank the enemy's position. That was going to take time so he decided to probe the enemy's defences to draw their attention. Suddenly the woods exploded in smoke and fire. Les Chouans had linked up with les m-----s Anglais!

It took time but eventually the cavalry was approaching the English flank, possibly a little rashly since they left their infantry escort far behind in their rush. Still, with a little luck they might catch the flank of the Scots.

Alas for the republicans, the Breton royalists moved fast and shot accurately. The Hussards quickly fell back and rallied. A few emigres were still holding on to one house in the village but the Highlanders, now alerted to the threat, retired a little and wheeled back to face both threats with the wood protecting their right.

The Hussars had rallied and chased the Chouans into the woods but couldn't follow and they couldn't face both ways, a scatter of deadly shots send them racing back to the ford. Meanwhile, the Veteran Whitecoats charged forward into the Highlanders only to be driven back when General Stewart threw himself into the fight, steadying his men.

Les Blancs were no children to be so easily scared though and a second charge saw General Stewart shot from the saddle and the highlanders wavered then fell back. The road was almost open!

The Highlanders were not children to be so easily scared either. With the Colours flying, the piper piping, and the gruff old sergeant pushing even some of the wounded back into line they prepared for a last stand. But the rest of the field had not been quiet, the 3rd battalion had finally caught up, only to be shattered by fire from the Royalist guerrillas in the wood.   St. Michel rushed to steady them but the Royalist bullets found him as well and the conscripts broke and ran. The affair was over as the sunset. 

At first I thought the French had no hope but by turn 10 of 15, I was beginning to doubt that they could be stopped. As it was the decision came late in turn 14 of 15 when it became clear that the French did not have the necessary 3 units capable of exiting the board before dark even if the English gave  up and retreated. 

A couple of hours well spent from set up to pack away, in fact, a great way to spend part of a convalescent day home alone. I'll leave the rest of my reflections for another day.


  1. A fine battle matched by the narrative. I seem to recognise that scenario...

    1. Yup, same one I played yesterday with different bridge, buildings and armies. More fun though :)

  2. I enjoyed reading about both battles. Interesting to see how the same scenario can be used with different figures and rules. Although my armies are 10mm figures based in groups, your battle inspires me to just base some additional figures individually so I can play a toy soldier style game with them as if they were larger figures on my much smaller table. The singly based figures can also be used to represent skirmishers in my other games.

    1. CS Grant's scenarios taught me that. I remember converting a helicopter raid to a boat raid when playing through the Red book.

      Nothing wrong with small tables used with imagination. 10mm aren't friendly to my eyes these days or even 15's which used to be my main scale but I've had some good 20mm games on a cardtable.