Monday, October 12, 2015

Warr Without an Enemie - meeting engagement

In an effort to better understand the rules and let me get these ECW minis onto the tabletop I run a little solo game at home.  The idea being to use only the new Quick Reference Sheet that I had printed.

I only had a 30" by 47" space to work with so I used a single mixed Oxford (random) brigade vs. a single mixed Essex brigade, set in 1643.

The random system in the game gave these force mix results:

Royalist:                                                   Parliament:
Trained 4 stand Foote I3                          Trained 7 stand Horse C2
Raw/Elite 4 stand Horse C3                     Trained 6 stand Pisoleers C2*
Veteran 6 stand Foote I3
Raw/Elite 3 stand Horse C3
Trained Light gun Artillery

I used "Good" commanders for each side.

having built a Parliament Army for much larger forces I could field both these brigades from the one collection - a bonus for the ECW period ... the 'uniforms' are essentially the same.

the terrain was an area of hills, not much else, Royalists put their cannon on a tall hill and covered it with a foote regiment, then Veteran foot in the center, with the two horse on the right flank

with only two large horse units, the Parliament set up the pistoleers on their left

the Parliament commander, took post between the two horse units

Royalist command was behind the Veteran foote

arrayed with the two over sized white flags the Veterans were the anchor of the Royalist force
Given that the Parliament force consisted of two horse units this was going to be a fast battle.

The pistoleers managed to roll two "1"s and in the hills built up 3 DPs in a hurry

while the Parliament Horse drove forward towards the cannon and force of foote on the tall hill

there were a few hits from musket fire, and all these were saved via the saving throws for a Trained unit 4,5,6 on a d6

the Pistoleers were in some disarray
Royalist die rolls for moving also had some "1"s in them and a horse unit was at 4 DPs on the far flank having started to wheel and being on hilly terrain.

the move roll to charge in for the Parliament Horse, they certainly 'made' the 8 inch distance uphill

the gunners chose to fire and flee (they rolled a "1" to get away) and ended up dead, the line of foote got off a shot (all saved) and then the crash of the horse utterly shattered the foote, they were routed taking more than 7 hits in the melee

while on the other flank, not declaring a charge, caused both lines to close up to 2" distance and the pistoleers got off a limited shot ... all saved.

as usual with battles dominated by horse ... they move quickly

the Parliament horse did not 'reign in control' - they missed the die roll by 1 pip and the Pistoleers were routed

battle for the Parliament Horse here was over by turn 3

Pistoleer Horse are almost useless against decent Royalist Horse
I looked upon the scenario like a flank or rear guard action, perhaps a Parliament Army is maneuvering in the area and this advance guard came across a Royalist brigade?

In any event the Royalist definitely lost a foote and cannon while the Parliament lost a pistoleer horse unit (is that really a loss?) and had to take some time to gather up the other horse unit after it had butchered the foote unit that it ran off in pursuit of.

In all the new QRS works great!  I did not have to look into the rule book at all during the game, only during the creation of the brigades.


Allan Tidmarsh said...

neat little game and nice narrative

MurdocK said...

Thank you Allan.

Sometimes these solo games work out well.

Unknown said...

Another great report. We are going to try the new play sheet at the weekend, thanks for doing it.

MurdocK said...

Let me know how the game using the new QRS goes?

Unknown said...

Yes the play sheets are excellent but there was a little discussion about the pictures. Like Dave I am no lawyer but the pictures on the play sheet might be a problem. My guess as a complete non expert is that it will be fine as it is not a commercial effort.

Do you think it would be possible to do another version of the QRS without the pictures?

In any case the game was the battle of Bolden Hill, 1644. This is a clash between the Scots Covenanters and Newcastle's Northern Royalists. The two sides are fairly equal in units 6 infantry each, 2 cavalry and equal artillery. But the Scots have an extra dragoon unit and their units are a little stronger. The two armies are on hills facing each other. The valley has a stream through about half of it and has a lot of hedged fields.

I will try to get some kind of map done and do a scenario.

So it was basically a mainly infantry fight over fairly close terrain. Both sides chose to put all their cavalry on their right flank and defend with their left. So we had a kind of 'revolving door' battlefield. Initially the Scottish attack had a lot of problems. They had to cross the stream to attack and had some poor rolls, so they accumulated quite a few DP's and the advance was slow. The Scottish commander here was 'Devout' and clearly these events triggered a need in him to seek God's help - i.e. he rolled 1 three turns in a row and on a 1 a Devout general does nothing for a turn and ties up a unit. The Royalist attack on the other flank went better and the soon caused problems. They repeatedly pushed back the Scottish dragoons & supporting troops who were blocking the main attack. But just couldn't finish them because of the hegded fields in the area. This meant that they were also collecting DP's. By the end of the game the Royalists were victorious on this flank but all the remaining units had 5 DP's. There was also the best Scottish unit blocking the path to the other flank, they Royalist clearly need time to reorganise. But by this time the Scottish attack had gone in. The Scottish commander had adopted a slower grinding down approach, while the Royalist commander tried to maintain a line. With no hope of a quick rescue for the left in sight and a very thin line the Royalists decide that it was time to withdraw to fight another day.

MurdocK said...

Yes it could be done without the illustrations.

What about using some of the historical lithographs of the period?
Or parts of those lithographs?

Your rules-set has the painting of King Charles on the cover, so maybe a few of the notable figures from the period on the sheet?

I ask as the images are a great way to break up the bare text and activate the right brain - or keep it active - during the game as just bare text starts to become a blur of charts and tables after a few turns and I have seen people become lost on where information is - even though it is in a numbered sequence right on the sheet.

Color is another way to achieve this and Jeff has made suggestions about some color action, so I may re-examine a way to achieve this.

Unknown said...

Yes I agree the images break it up and they are great images. I think the parts of lithographs, 'notable figures' or colour idea would also work well. A guy on the Yahoo group who should know about this says -


Pics are fine as long as you or someone you asked/ gave you permission took them

It's a courtesy to mention the manufacturer"

The basic problem is I am rubbish at this kind of thing :(

MurdocK said...

Yes, that is true. Great to mention the source (if there is room for that on the sheet).

I think what I might do is take some high resolution closeups and other pics of my own miniatures in suitable poses and use them.

That way no-one can bitch.

Unknown said...

I think anything you do will be fine and indeed I suspect what you have done is also fine. Certainly no one has 'bitched' about it and we were just concerned that it doesn't get you in trouble - we all thought it was great :)

MurdocK said...

Awesome that you guys got use from the QRS

I'm looking at the time to do some photos or edits from stuff I already have to put on there.

Maybe before the end of the year.