Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Maurice playtest: part III.

The Swedish develops its attack, using “Passage of Lines” to interpenetrate its artillery without being disrupted. Four brigades move towards the Danish line.

The Danish conforms its line in a concave manner to maximize its fire,

and “stealing” the volley phase to the Swedish hit the leading trained brigade with canister.

In its move the Danish plays the card “This was not on the Map” and places a swamp straight in front of the Swedish leading brigade.

The swedish, undaunted, moves its artillery in front of the infantry and during the volley phase shot with cannister the Danish artillery, using “Whiff of grape”.

At this point we leave the narration to a contemporary witness: 

“The young Hereditary Prince of Denmark was with the Army. Despite the advice of the courtier, the young man was riding in front of the infantry when, suddenly, a cannonball beheaded him. Great was the shock for the death of His Highness and the soldier, as well as the Officiers were deeply demoralized, the High Rank officers speechless by thinking at the King rage”.

The Swedish play “Death of an Hero”, roll a 6 (even) and the Danish morale lower to 2. (I used the morale definition and the morale losses of the Lite version, so any unit which breaks is a loss of one point of morale. So the Danish army is only two units to the morale breaks).

The Swedish press on with the infantry attack, taking punishment by the Danish volley fire in the process. At this point the Danish charges with its right wing cavalry the Swedish cavalry, playing “Stirrups In”. The attack breaks the enemy cavalry: 1 morale point lost for the Swedish.

This result forces the second line brigade to wheel to confront the Danish cavalry, putting the whole Swedish attack in disarray:

in the following volley phase the Danish cavalry is fired by enfilade and breaks: only 1 morale point remaining; however in the firefight the “Lethal volley” advantage is taking a toll on the Swedish infantry, with the two most exposed brigade with 3 Disr each.


To make thing worst the Danish plays “Confusion” and the supporting brigade, after having broken the cavalry, get lost “à la Roos”.

But, when everything seemed lost for the Swedish, the Danish artillery is destroyed by cannister and the Army Morale breaks. The destruction of two swedish brigades by volley fire is useless, the Swedish retain 1 Army Morale points and win the battle, with one brigade of infantry and one of cavalry still fresh and uncommited.

We leave again the narration to our witness: 

“Our infantry, with a continuous and precise fire broke the swedish attack. However the Generals were deeply depressed by the Prince death and the soldiers were scared by bad omens. So after a Council of War the Commander decided to let the Swedish army escape its punishment and ordered the retreat, which was done with composure and order, in a gloomy mood”.

The “butcher bill”: 3 Swedish units to 2 Danish.

To summarize the result, I find the Rules easy to understand and the play was smooth and very funny. To the question: “Is it a good historical simulation”, the answer is manifold. First of all we have to decide what is historicity when we move miniatures on a green cloth. In any case, the rule renders the “chrome” of a XVIII battle well enough, with an ebb-and-flow tempo: of course a modicum of role-playing is part of the game. To give a more precise answer to the question I’ll play Kolin with Maurice and with Volley&Bayonet (the same can be done with Might&Reason) to better grasp the pros- and cons- of the two different simulation.
It was a funny replay and Maurice from here to now on will stand together with V&B in my Rules Pantheon.

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