Tag Archives: French

AWI Campaign Ideas – Part 4 The Terrain Generator

As promised a while back here is a little bit of info on the troop and  terrain generators.

 

Troop Types

AWI Campaign Army selection rules

 Each chit is worth 100pts

Select units and assign them to a chit, each chit is to be numbered. Casualties can be carried from battle to battle.

When a battle happens the CinCs rating  is increased by 1 level for each previous battle he had a major victory in or reduced by one level for each major loss.

 

British

Brigade commander Average 15pt +/-5pt per level increased or decreased.

Cost per SP

Guards C/B/A @12pt

Grenadiers C/A/A @ 13pt

Lights C/B/B @ 12pt includes skirmish ability

Highlanders C/A/B @12pt

Line C/B/B @11pt

Rangers C/B/C @10pt

Lt Dragoons C/B/B @11pt

Loyalist Line C/C/C @9pt

Loyalist Cavalry C/C/C@9pt

Militia B/D/D@8pt

Militia Cavalry C/C/C @9pt

Indians in Open D/C/E in woods D/C/C @ 8pt MOB formation only

Artillery B/E/B @9pt per crewman (Lt=2, Med=3, How=4 and Hvy=4)

 

Hessians (Max 2 Brigades)

Only allowed if reinforcement arrive!

Brigade commander Average 15pt +/-5pt per level increased or decreased.

Grenadiers C/B/C @10pt

Line D/C/D @7pt

Jaegers D/C/D @9pt Skirmishers and rifles

Artillery C/E/C @7pt per crewman (Lt=2, Med=3, How=4 and Hvy=4)

 

Lt Guns 10pts, Med guns 15pts, Howitzer 20 pts or Heavy    25 pts

 

Promotion/Demotion

If British win a major victory (see below), then any unit that engaged the enemy may increase any factor in a unit by 1 level (no factor may be greater than A).

If British receives a major defeat then all unit that did not engage the enemy must drop by 1 level, all units that engaged enemy drop 2 factors by 1 level (no factor may be lower than E).

 

Americans (Min 25% Militia)

Brigade commander Average 15pt +/-5pt per level increased or decreased.

Cost per SP

Continentals C/D/D @7pt

Lights (1778+) B/C/B @12pt includes skirmish ability

Lt Dragoons C/C/C @9pt

State Militia B/C/C @10pt

Riflemen A/D/D @11pt skirmish formation only and rifle armed

Militia B/D/D @8pt +1pt if skirmishers

Militia Cavalry C/C/D @8pt

Artillery C/D/C @8pt per crewman (Lt=2, Med=3, How=4 and Hvy=4)

 

Lt Guns 10pts

Med guns 15pts

Howitzer 20 pts

Heavy    25 pts

 

If Americans win a victory (see below), then any unit that engaged the enemy may increase any factor in a unit by 1 level (no factor may be greater than A).

If Americans win a major victory (see below), then any unit that engaged the enemy may increase any 2 factors in a unit by 1 level (no factor may be greater than A). All other units may increase any one factor by 1 (no factor may be greater than A).

If a side receives a major defeat then all units must drop by a factor by 1 level (no factor may be lower than E).

 

Reinforcement – only when a major victory has been achieved

 

French (Max 2 Brigades)

Brigade commander Average 15pt +/-5pt per level increased or decreased.

Grenadiers C/B/B @11pt

Line C/C/C @9pt

Light C/C/B @11pt includes skirmish ability

Hussars C/B/C @10pt (Max 1 unit)

Artillery C/C/C @9pt (Lt=2, Med=3, How=4 and Hvy=4)

 

Lt Guns 10pts, Med guns 15pts, Howitzer 20 pts or Heavy    25 pts

 

Victory or Major Victory

After a battle unless obvious count the (total of points lost/original points value of army) x100 = % of army lost

E.g.: 175 point army of two brigades (Obviously has lost a battle before so now weak) loses 25 pts, therefore (25/175) x100 = 0.143×100 = 14.3% casualties.

 

Greater loses is the loser.

If loses are twice the winners loses, than a major victory/defeat has occurred.

 

Optional Rules

Defenses – Any army indicated to move may not move and instead build defenses. This allows 100 points of defenses to be built. 2” of light defenses or 1” of heavy defenses=5pt. They are only applicable in major battle not skirmishes and only if the side who built them is the defender. If left unoccupied they are removed from the board.

awi-defenses

 

Terrain Generation

To help with this I have built two random terrain generators, one for plain terrain and one for rough terrain.

I do not claim to be  good at Excel so please excuse the simple approach. Please feel free to modify percentage of availability as you see fit.

I play on a 9’x5’ table so I generated eastings of 0-108” and Northings of 0-60”. These are measured from the bottom left corner.

Here is an example of a plain generated table top.

plain-terrain-gen-awiThis gives a table like this

demo-terrainHope you get the idea. If you really don’t like it then hit F9 and it will generate another.

Here the actual files for both Plain and Rough terrain generation.

terrain-generator-awi-plain terrain-generator-awi-rough

 

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AWI Campaign Ideas – Part 3 The first battle

I know I said I would talk about the terrain generator but Saturday was here and it was our game day.

Nathan came around early and we set about building his British brigades for the campaign, as his computer had broken.

The Board-game

We then sat down to play the board-game. It was only turn 3 when things started to go against the idea of how the game would play in our heads.  I rolled “snake eyes” which meant that I was unable to move any of my units. This allowed Nathan the chance to catch one of my two state militia based armies and force a major battle. My plan had been to avoid a major battle until I had consolidated my forces. Well we all know about plans and what happens to them! Well it did.

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Nathan

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Turn 3. Nathan nominates the land unit at the top of the picture near Boston and unfortunately I had “snake eyes”.

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With Nathan’s roll of a two in lands straight on my unit.

The Forces

That said this is what campaigns are all about though. Nathan had a strength of approximately 500 points while I not only had inferior troops but only 300pts worth. I am not sure that if we were doing a normal game we would ever have fielded forces like these. Not only did Nathan have better troops but when we got his forces out for the table top he also had a Howitzer and a large artillery piece in the force. These are very powerful on the tabletop, if they hit. This made me feel very intimidated as I had militias and a light field piece.americans-14012017 british-14012017

The Terrain

The terrain generator also threw up a battlefield I would probably never layout normally – a river down one flank a ridge splitting the table, a farm and some woods all added to the next dilemma. Where to set up as the defender?  Do I take the open side to the South and force the British to be crammed up in and around the farm although they would have the ridge to sit that heavy gun on or take the farm with its defensive fencing but allow the British to almost deploy along the whole Southern edge. In the end it was the ridge that sold it two me for two reasons.

  1. If I placed my artillery up there it should have a good field of fire
  2. The elevation sort of protected my right flank but would also slow down any British advance due to the reduced movement uphill.  This may allow me the time to turn on my heels and get away before melee.

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My new plan!

I deployed my stronger brigade on the ridge so they were easier to extradite but this did leave them exposed with no fencing to hide behind.

My weaker brigade occupied the farm and lined the fencing.

I gave orders that all units are to engage the British in at least 3 round of fire but if they closed too quickly to break off and leave the field.

The British set up gave me hope! They concentrated all their forces around the centre except for the lone cavalry unit out on their left flank. This I guessed would be used to  flank the woods and attack me from my right flank. This I thought would take about 5-6 turns depending upon the activation cards ( They would not be able to be activated on the CinC’s card once they were out of sight). This left my left flank over flanking the British right. Should I advance my 2 left flank militias and swing them in on the flanks of the advancing British?

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Turn 1 Steady advance by the British across the whole line.

Their artillery inflicted a total of 3 hits between them luckily all were saved.

I advanced my rifle on the hill a little closer. They have a 24” range while the British have a 12” range.

My artillery fires and hits a line unit which is unsaved so first blood to the Americans.

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Turn 2

British again steal the march with all their units getting activated and the artillery hitting and inflicting 2 hits which I cannot save.

My centre fire and take out one the British Light infantry units.

My left flank jump the fences to advance on the British flank

My artillery fires but hits nothing.

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Turn 3

The British get the draw again with the activation cards. Only half of mine get activated.

Their left flank hold back to allow their large gun to fire. This flaw in their deployment does not stop them destroying my riflemen!!!!!!

Their right starts to engage my units behind the fence while their right most unit swings around to face the threat of my two militia unit on their flank (my plan is working)

I open fire against the highlanders and inflict 2, both unsaved. While that would normal be the end of any unit as it would be only 1SP strong so would roll only one die but  due to the large size of this highlander unit (5SPs) they are now the size of a normal unit!

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Turn 4 Only the British get activated and move ever closer before the End of turn card is drawn. While I can fire I cannot make any moves. The British are too close for comfort, I cannot allow them to get into melee with mine.

I do manage to inflict another hit on the Highlanders but take another couple of hits from his guns.

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Turn 5

End of Turn card drawn immediately.

Both sides fire and I take another 3 hits which convinces me it is time to leave the field.

For this turn I can only respond with firing and hit again the highlanders  as well as a loyalist unit.

 

Turn 6

First bit of luck, I get my army activation card. The plan was to run but………………… if I fired and caused casualties, I believe a number of the British units may fail their morale. If I don’t hit or they don’t fail their morale then when the brigade card are drawn I can extradite them then.

My boys had their eye in as every unit caused a hit. Unfortunately every hit was saved!

The next card out was the End of Turn so I had nothing to fire, having already been activated but the British opened up and caused another hit wiping out a state militia unit in my centre leaving a gap in my line.

Turn 7

The first cards out were all American so I managed to start the extraction process although one unit did get caught up on the fencing so were shot in the back by the British.

Their cavalry had just started to appear around the back of the woods so definitely time to go.

End of Turn card frustrated the British and allowed me to slip away, bruised and battered but happy that a good fight had been put up.

sam_4004 sam_4008 sam_4007 sam_4006 sam_4005Outcome

The British lost 105 pts of infantry and the American 112 points.  A draw on points as neither side inflicted more than 10% than received,  but as the British held the ground a minor victory was awarded to them.

As it was a minor victory it did not amend any of the units rating, a major victory or loss is required to do this for the British.

We rolled to see was reinforcements were available to bring the units back up to strength and called it a day.

We both agreed that the system had worked well and gave us a really enjoyable game with pressures that we would not normally feel in a standard table top game.

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AWI Campaign Ideas – Part 2

Since the last post I have been very busy but have still managed to add a bit more to the campaign idea.

We have agreed that the campaign will:

  • Play the boardgame “Skirmish” as normal until there is either a major battle or a naval battle. This is when both forces end their move in the same area.
  • Transfer this to the table top –  Each counter (Land or ship) =100pts
  • Before the campaign starts each counter is numbered and a force representing it is picked (see below).
  • After the battle forces are reviewed and consolidated with surplus counters being removed.
  • Each unit is to be tracked and their ratings can be modified depending on things such as: winning/losing/ engaged enemy.
  • The boardgame  has a watermark effect which shows hills, very subtle but this will be used to determine if the tabletop game (Land) will be set up as plain or hilly.
  • I have also used an Excel sheet to generate the terrain layout.

Here is the initial layout with a few of the counters numbered

sam_3956sam_3963Here is an example of what the counters represent.

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Army Lists

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Random Brigade

If anyone would like the spreadsheets then here they are.

awi-american-brigades awi-british-brigades

When the battle is to be played I transfer the units to their tabletop organisation.

british-table-top-organiserThis allows me to copy the cells from the bottom depending upon the units in the brigades and paste into their tabletop structure above. One of the Brigadiers becomes the CiinC. This can then be printed and used to track units through the game.

Here is the original excel sheets for both the British and Americans

dummy-record-sheet

I have also been painting a few units ready for our first game

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A heavy gun and crew from Foundry

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Militia

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Militia

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Militia Brigade

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Lee’s Legion in Skirmish formation

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State Militia

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Riflemen

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The Grand battery. L to R Light,Medium,Light,Howitzer and Heavy

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Howitzer

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Medium with Light to the left

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Light

sam_3968 The British view hopefully

Hope this is of some interest. Next blog I will cover the terrain generator.

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AWI Campaign Ideas – Part 1

Last month we didn’t have a big game. Instead Nathan came over and we played a few different board games. This was mainly due to use wanting to discuss rules and campaigns.

If you have read any of my posts before you will know that I quite like the AWI. With this in mind we played a very old game called skirmish by Milton Bradley, probable from the 60-70s.

skirmish-mbI will not bore you here with the mechanics but each side get a number of counters and for the British these are organised into 4 armies of 5 counters. They also have a number of sailing ships including a troop carrier with 2 reinforcement units for the British. These can only be requested once they have lost a major battle. The Americans have 16 counters but these are organised differently. They represent 13 militia units, 2 state militia units and the Continental army.  They also have a reinforcement ship which carries 4 counters. These can only be called for once they have won a major victory. There are two type of land battles. These are Major or skirmish. A major battle happens when a player maneuvers their army/unit to land directly on top of the opposition. A skirmish is when they end up adjacent to an army/unit. Skirmishes are resolved using a randomly drawn card.

skirmish-boardAnyway, while playing I started to think about this being transferred to the tabletop. Here are my thoughts:

  • Play the game as normal but when there is a “major” battle, transfer it to the table top.
  • Each counter equals 100pts.
  • Each counter if numbered could then be tracked.
  • Reinforcements for the British could include Hessians, and French for the Americans.
  • Army lists need to reflect our preferred rules” Field of Honor”.
  • Consideration regarding fortifications
  • Naval aspect – recently we have played a number of different sets and none so far delivering the killer blow. They all add something but not enough for any one set to be our choice. I think this is because we will need different sets for scales of battle. More later. Tomorrow we are playing  “Trafalgar” and “Galleys and Galleons”.
  • Terrain generation

I will now start on the army lists so back soon.

 

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1/2400 Naval – First Attempts

Sat down tonight and decided on painting something different. Have had enough of WW2.

A few nights ago while looking for the British 2Lbr guns I came across a box of Figurehead 1/2400 Napoleonic Naval. I had seen these on a web site and thought they may be fun to have. I have a number of 1200 scale ships but wanted to find a better ground scale and fight larger actions with smaller rated ships. I think I was interested in the War of 1812 and the Great Lakes era at the time of purchase. Probably like most wargamers, I bought them and put them on the “to do” shelf. On opening them up I forgot how small they were. I decided to have a go at some of the smallest I have, FN16 Cutters, if I could not make these look good then I would lose interest and they would be back on the auction site for sale.

In the pack were 3 models, so quickly I stuck them each on a cork to help holding them while painting, primed and within the last  hour I have painted and varnished them. I have to admit I am quite please with the end result and will move on to the rest of them some time soon.

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Not sure yet as to what set of rules I will be using yet, but open to any suggestions.

I would like to do games with 5-8 ships max usually commanded by one player, minimal book keeping and relatively fast play.

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November’s Game – Napoleonics

The consensus of the usual players was for a Napoleonic Game.

Having recently visited the Elite Miniature website I spotted a great scenario on there. I decided to give it a try. The basic plot is that a Spanish garrison is holding a town blocking the advance of the French. The British with a few Portuguese are rushing to help save the day.

Here are the Orders Of Battle

The table was 9×5 and dominated by 2 large tree covered hills and a large town in the the centre. The focus was the town and this would be the first time this type of feature had such a prominent role in one of our games and would test the rules.Map

French commanders 1,2,3 and 4 and their direct commands were placed on the French table edge.

The Spanish were the only Allied units on the table and they were holding the town. Initially one unit holding each quarter of the town, artillery on the road deployed facing the oncoming French and the Dragoons outside awaiting a suitable target.

The main French attach lead by Brigadier Heller advanced towards the village in columns with skirmishers to the front. As they got close the Spanish dragoons fancied making a name for themselves and charged. They contacted a unit of skirmishers before they had a chance to fire ( They decided to stand and fire but rolled a score on the fire dice for the range at which they fired that was greater than the distance to the cavalry). This meant they were automatically wiped out. The dragoons realising how easy it was carried on into the French columns. Here they hit a column before it could get into square but it held and for the next couple of turns a furious melee was acted out which ended in the dragoons being wiped out although they had inflicted some damage to the infantry. What this really did though was to brake up the attack so that not all the French hit the town at the same time! This gave the Spanish to move all the infantry to the half of the village nearest the French. In our rules each building represented can hold a battalion. Attacking the town gives the defender a +2 advantage. To get into the town the Spanish must either be destroyed or vacate a building which would allow the French to move in and then fight house to house). Over the next 6 turns the melee continued to ebb and flow with both sides at times thinking they had carried the fight. Unbelievably the Spanish morale held even though casualties were building.

In the meantime more French had arrived and were moving through both hills to envelope the town. the horse battery deploying on the hill to give supportive fire into the town. The British had also started to arrive. Deploying either side of the road and bracing for the expected French attacks.

Back in the town the fight was grinding to an end. The Spanish had gallantly fought to the last man. The artillery being the only surviving unit but that was in full route, not being rallied before it routed right off the table. The town was open for the taking. How could get to occupy it first? This was were the British were given a life line, by the French! A random event was drawn and it was “The master spy” card. This allowed the next activation card to look at the follow 6 activation cards and rearrange into an order that suited them. A very powerful card. This could have allowed the french to activate their units first and then place the “end of turn” card before any British card. Unfortunately this did not happen and in a panic the French place the End of Turn card as the next to be drawn, therefore ending the turn. Next turn the British were activated first and allowed them to move reinforcements into their end of the town. The French did move into their end of the town but now they would have to get involved in house to house fighting.

The British were not having a great day, their firing was not causing the casualties they hoped for and losing all faith they moved more and more units into the town. The French right flank came down off the hill to engage the British moving into the town. This advance was only halted by the late appearance of some British and Portuguese Light Dragoons to their flank. The Light Dragoons went in catching a French column in the flank. It did mange to hold though. This fear caused the remaining French units to all form square. I could almost feel the sense of Christmas coming early for the British artillery seeing this new dense target that surely even they could not miss.( They had been rolling terrible dice). The panic in the British was also true on their right flank as they abandoned their position upon the french cavalry coming down the hill and raced for the town, leaving a few skirmishers to stem the on coming cavalry.

Last turn of the day heard the British give a sigh of relief as the Portuguese infantry finally turned up. The French had their cavalry and Italian reinforcements also turn up. Everybody now have the confidence that they could win the day.

In all we had about 5 hours of full on gaming with many breaks for tea and chatting and an hour or so for lunch.

It was decided that we would leave the game as was and continue next month. So Part One is complete what can Part 2 hold? Will any more reinforcements turn up, will the squares hold, can the French clear the town or can the British clear it.

Figures and terrain  are all from my collection, mainly Perry and Victrix with a few Elite. Town and trees were homemade.

Rules – Our own house set called “King George Commands and We Obey”. See link to rules on side of page if interested.

 

 

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August’s Game – Like a lot of Brits we went to Spain.

I had received a request for a Napoleonic game. Steve had only played Napoleonics once before so I decided on an engagement battle with the British having the added task of trying to secure an point of entry. As was normal in the Peninsula, the British were outnumbered in cavalry but had their new secret weapon, Congreve Rockets! and hopefully the promised assistance of the local Spanish Commander, who assured the British he would be there as soon as he could.

The terrain was laid out. The British were to come on from the main south road (A) with a small advance force having held the hill line. The French were able to come on along the whole length of their edge. Both flanks had been secured with cavalry although poor leader abilities may mean that the cavalry may not be as active as the French commander (Steve) may like.

The Rules

Our own set ” King George Commands And We Obey”  KGCAWO.

The Forces

French OOBBritish OOB

The Map

the game was 10×6

Map

How it went

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The French came on to the table in a confident manner securing both flanks. Their brigade of infantry that started on the far right flank began to advance upon an increasingly isolated British light dragoons, who patiently awaited the arrival of the Portuguese brigade.

The Portuguese decided to support the Light dragoons by taking up residence in the village of Blanco Aqua which spanned the river.

The French columns of Grenadiers, eager to get to grips with the British started to advance upon the brigade holding the hill line. In fact they were so keen to engage they started to pull away from the rest of the French army. They had out-marched in particular the brigade next to them, who were in mixed order. The British gunners on the hill spotted them and switched to them as a target (No skirmish screen to protect). Worst still, although not sure for who they had drawn the attention of the rocket troop!  With a mighty whoosh the rockets screamed into the air. Nathan’s dice throwing allowed the rocket to head on a straight path towards the target, at least for a while. Then, all of a sudden the rocket started to turn, back upon itself heading towards the foot gunners on the hill. Luckily for them the last die Nathan threw was a 1 and so the rocket came down just short of the crew, forcing them and another two British units the rocket had flown over to test. Luckily all survived unharmed but it did mean that once the laughing had finished the French commanded commented that it may be a lethal weapon on shaky troops, if only it would fly correctly.

The French right wing cavalry engaged and destroyed the light dragoons but were driven off from getting closer to the village by some accurate fire from the Portuguese inside the village. It was at this time things were starting to get tense in the centre. The French had been steadily advancing upon the British with minimal casualties. The deployed light regiments in front of the attack columns really paid off. This was not true from the French Grenadiers who had suffered terribly. Luckily for hem the French left wing cavalry had managed to advance in support and this in turn had force the British heavy dragoons to retire and forced the end British line unit into square.

The next turn a fate/ fortune card revealed a previously unknown ford in the river. Whoever’s action card was drawn next decided where they thought the ford was and on a 4-6 it was there. The next card out was French Light Cavalry Division, they identified the river area between the town and the hill and threw a 6. This allowed them to advance through the river and threaten the British centre!

The French centre were in melee with their columns against Picton’s brigade. Only stout defending managing to save the day. With the light cavalry ready to pick off the remaining British, accurate and timely fire from artillery and the Portuguese in the town convinced the cavalry they may have advanced too far.

The Game was declared a British minor victory. What happened to the Spanish Commander. well he could arrive on any turn after the 8th turn. This came and went, as did the 9th, 10th and 11th. He never managed to get a way from his mistress in time to get to the battle!

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