Thursday, June 28, 2012

Field Of Glory Napoleonics first try out

Had a bash today with Stephen using the Field Of Glory Napoleonics rules which we have both had since publication and not used (one of many such sets !!). I used my Prussians in 1813 incarnation with 3  'Brigades' against Stephen's French of 3 'Corps'. We used the terrain and deployment from the rules which is standard FOG with selections, dice for placement, dice to move/remove and deploy 3 units each in turn. Only real difference is free but compulsory presence of a road down central sector and one gentle hill for defender. Gave us a fairly plausible table layout.
My Brigades comprised 3 Infantry 'Regiments' 1 Medium Artillery Battery and 1 Cavalry Regiment each.  1 Landwehr (Large units) per Brigade and Cavalry were 1 Heavy Dragoon, 1 Light Hussar  and 1 Landwehr Lancers (Large). Each Brigade had 'attachments' in form of 1 Rifle Skirmisher, 1 Medium Artillery and 1 Cavalry base (these attach to units replacing a base generating varied benefits/bonuses). My units were all Average Line except for 2 Veteran Infantry and the Landwehr types which are all Conscripts. French had several Conscript foot couple of Veteran Light Foot 1 Veteran Heavy Artillery Battery and 3 Medium Batteries with 2 Light and 1 Heavy Cavalry. They had only a few skirmishers attachments (I think 1 per Division) plus 1 Officer. Both sides had a Corps Commander and 3 Divisional Commanders but French Corps leader had 2 Cmd Points value as Skilled whilst all other leader were Competent with 1 Cmd Point each.
As just learning rules we skipped flank attacks and reserve commands and simply lined up for a bash. French as defender cannot move voluntarily forward of their deployment zone (exception to occupy villages withing one move) for 2 turns and my attacking Prussians (who failed to get possible 1-2 extra units as attackers) cannot do any retrograde moves for 2 turns.
The Command point system seemed to work well and we could see that it would reward a good initial plan and concentration of effort. The single French bonus more significant that seemed apparent as was the Officer attachment (as he essentially gives the unit he is with an inherent CP in addition to Combat bonus and Rally ability). Movement is straight forward enough with anything complex requiring a test and use of a CPs. Standard wheeling, formation changing etc if outside 2" of enemy.
Firing again fairly easy to calculate as its FOG style number of dice per unit plus bonuses then To Hit numbers with +/- Points of Advantage. Generally 5/6 at anything but short range. One change from FOG/FOGR is that the +/- POAs only count for own unit (ie not + to you = - to enemy as well).
I did manage one assault into a village which was rebuffed (you have to Break defenders to chase them out) but managed to shoot them to destruction following turn (rolled 5 hits out of 8 dice !!).
Rallying easy as well if a Commander attaches and  such Cohesion tests are different to standard FOG as instead of needing 7+ or whatever on 2 D6 one now rolls 2 D6 needing to score 5+ or whatever on any of these. Usual bonuses to numbers of dice or required numbers or re-rolls for being Guard, Superior, Veteran or Poor in most circumstances.
Sequence of play worked well with CP allocation phase - Assault Phase (Active player but other can react) - Firing Phase active player first - Movement Phase active player only - Combat Phase (ie Melee) - Rally/End Phase.
We quite liked the game despite being bit slow (our own fault to a degree as neither of us had read in anything approaching any depth prior to game !!) as we learnt as we went. I suspect not as slick as Lasalle but possibly more variety to the game overall ?
Biggest bug bear probably the usual FOG 'pertinent rules all over the place' effect as often slow to find what we were looking for as referenced in several sections. QRS a bit cryptic until you get hang of it then  works okay.
The attraction of a points system to enable quickly setting up for an evening game will likely bring us back to this set again. Whether they reflect Napoleonic warfare to a degree enough to satisfy us remains to be seen.
All in all a fun first outing

French lines

Prussians opposite

French defend town

Prussians showing off their attachments (Skirmisher, Cavalry and Artillery)

More Prussians

French on hilltop

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