Saturday, September 09, 2017

Zorndorf with Field of Battle II

Zorndorf re-fought today using Field of Battle II rules with units as Regiments/Brigades as per the Might & Reason scenario I used as basis for terrain and OOBs and a 6ft x 4ft tabletop area.

Three protagonists in addition to mine own wee self arrived to take part, Stephen P, Richard M and Darren 'Le Duc' G and with Stephen B having to drop out at last minute this meant I got to play this time.
Le Duc arrived first so gave him persona of Frederick with me as underling and Richard and Steven played Fermor and sub-commander.

I had set-up the five Russian commands in roughly historical areas but allowed them to re-arrange as they saw fit (within 18" of table edge).

They moved Observation Corps to their left and brought Saltykovs forward command back into line with them.
I then allowed Prussians to adjust their historical set up which saw Freddie withdraw Biebersteins Dragoon command from their left to the right.

I had a couple of minor special rules in play with Zorndorf already on fire (set by dastardly Cossacks earlier) and Freddie who had control of 5 Heavy Gun Batteries was allowed to deploy them up to 12" and have an opening bombardment.
For this I used 1 x Arty Firepower card from their deck but allowed them to shoot at anything within their firing zone which was mostly at extreme range but also allowed 2nd rank units to potentially suffer.
The batteries would be re-loaded for game start but with 1 Firepower card used.
The bombardment was literally 'hit and miss' with a couple of units taking single hits.

For SYW games I should say that I do not allow foot artillery to re-limber once deployed (but they can pivot) as seems more in keeping with SYW period.
Also for all units I only allow shooting ahead along flank lines with artillery counting an extra base width each side.
We find this stops guns being used like 'sniper' rifles and again feels right.
Additionally I disallowed oblique moves by Russian foot but allowed their Cossacks and Hussars to use Skirmish formation.
I made Ivan foot as dice 8 defence but a mere dice 8 shooters (dice 10 for Grenadiers) to reflect their stoicism and penchant for bayonet charges.
Their heavier cavalry were C10 D6 with lights types fairly useless C8 D4 types.
Prussian foot were C12 D6 (Fusileers C10 D4) to reflect their superior musketry with Grenadiers a potent C12 D8.
Freddies mounted arm was very strong with Cuirassiers being C12 D8, Dragoons C10 D6 and Hussars C8 D6.
Fermor was a D10 commander with sub commanders beng 1 x D12 3 x D10 and 1 x D8
Frederick had 1 x D12+1 (Seydlitz) 2 x D12 and rest D10.
For morale points I gave the Russians 45 and Prussians 35.

The action started in earnest with Russian guns targeting Seydlitz horse units and proving pretty effective (good rolls by Richard).
Le Duc began a long sweeping move to his right aided by ease of Prussian manoeuvre and gaining of 2+ move segments.
The Russians began to move some foot to this flank but not before Prussian Cuirassier and Dragoons managed to hurl themselves at opposing mounted crushing them.
The Prussian horse were however blown (out of command and a pursuit 'hit' each) but Russians were unable to capitalise not getting a opportunity to charge in before Prussians managed to Rally (FOB at its unpredictable work).
Le Duc then swung several Musketeers units into action on this flank exerting real pressure, in fact lack of physical space to deploy was more of a problem than Russians (Stephen P rolled an epic amount of 1s on any type of dice !).
On Prussian left a virtual stalemate occurred as this weakened flank kept suffering from Russian guns having to retire to rally several times.
Only once did a unit of Dragoons manage to catch the guns masked by a hapless Russian foot unit which they duly dispatched however they Routed themselves after a pasting from cannister shot.

However by now the Russian left was in real trouble as the Prussian horse showed its prowess in close combat (after surviving some poor close range volleys) destroying outright a couple of Russians foot units with support of musketry from their foot.
Soon the Russian morale had run out and there first card of a new initiative was an Army Morale card which was duly failed giving the day to Prussia.
Prussia ended on a mere 9 Morale points (4 of which had been 'owed' by enemy) so a fairly close run thing once more.

I do so love the type of game FOB generates so effortlessly and the game now plays fast and furious as everyone now has at least a basic grasp of the rules and system.

Great fun again and two won games in a single week !!!!!!
I must go and buy a lottery ticket................................................

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