Sunday, August 18, 2013

FoB2: The Battle of Morunnin

We played our randomly generated Field of Battle scenario described here Friday night. It went well for the French, with Marshal Dalé's plan working perfectly-- the Russian hordes did, indeed, crash and break against the French rock.

We were a bit short on command stands, which played a bit to the French's setup advantages. Essentially, the Russians were forced to set up first, and the French responded by setting up entirely on the right half of the table. They placed the imaginary town of Morunnin on their left flank, and the entire left half of their line was able to anchor on a forest edge. On their right, they placed a grand battery-esque concentration of four artillery batteries.

Battle of Morunnin

Battle of Morunnin

Battle of Morunnin

The Russians marched forward. The right division pressed into the woods, while their left division had a difficult time against the massed artillery. The Russians found the Class III woods (a poor scenario decision by me) to be GREAT defensive cover for their opponents, and struggled to break through. On the left, though, the Russians thought they saw an opportunity. The French right was well forward, and they directed their tardy cavalry brigade onto the table to try and exploit it. The French responded with Initiative, forming four battalions in square and plugging the gap firmly.

On the Russian right, the grenadiers led the attack-- at the cost of one of their two battalions. They finally had entered the woods, and threatened to split the entire French line. However, on the right, they simply could not gain traction. The Russian hussars gallantly charged the flanks of the artillery, but this led the across the French squares, which drove them off.

With just that small, hard fought advantage on their right, it wasn't enough for the Russians, who were at zero Army Morale Points. De Tommey could not inspire them to stay for more death and destruction, and they eventually withdrew-- battered, exhausted, but in good order. Dalé's two hussar regiments were unable to pursue effectively, thanks to both the heroic effort of the battered Russian cavalry, and Dalé's down defensive mindset.

Battle of Morunnin

Battle of Morunnin

Battle of Morunnin

Battle of Morunnin

Battle of Morunnin

Battle of Morunnin

Battle of Morunnin

The VIPs of the game were the French artillery on their right, and the Class III woods on their left. Definitely a poor decision on my part. I was concerned about the French being outnumbered, and wanted the woods to really feel like woods. However, the French took a much more defensive posture than I expected, and both the location and density of the woods was substantial. Lesson learned, I hope!!

Another thing we needed was more command stands, but they are on the painting desk right now, just waiting for some Russian green paint. Also, counters. I have casualty figures to paint up for UI losses, but first I will make some generic rock counters which could be used for any game. Also, some way to mark first fire. We threw pipe cleaners out, but I'm not a fan of the detritus. I suppose the best way would be to mark up a roster, but then that requires marking every unit. I could do generic identifiers, I suppose...something to think about. Also, less common, but I could use Out of Command markers...fallen standards? That might be good.

All in all, the game seemed to go well, especially considering the short notice. Given that, and all the new figures, I'm looking at running a Theater of War campaign. I've wanted to do that for a while, and finally feel like it's doable.

And, hey, I figured out how to take panoramic pictures with my camera! Here are some decidedly unimpressive pictures of the post game layout, clutter and all. If you have suggestions on how to spruce up the game table layout, or reduce the table clutter, let me know!

Battle of Morunnin

Battle of Morunnin

8 comments:

  1. Looking good, Andy.

    Suggestion for clutter reduction (specifically the last picture): drink less while gaming?

    But who the hell wants to do that?!

    Best,
    Gabriel

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    Replies
    1. I was going to say, buy a bar...

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  2. Nice report and sounds like it gave an interesting game.

    You can try pockets on the side of the table for the QRS,dice, etc and cup holders for the drinks etc - buit it never seems to work for me! :-)

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    1. No suggestions of farm animal markers!? ;-)

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  3. Nice. That's a pretty quick turn around to get those Historicon Russians on the table. Good job.

    Here's something I've been considering for table clutter based on stuff I've seen people do at cons. Instead of having a QRS for each player, get a couple done in big poster size and put them up on the walls around the game table. Your game space is not so caverous, so you should be able to read them. Downsides are primarily cost, especially if you are prone to tweak the rules or the layout of the QRS. Reprinting a few 8 x 11 sheets is trivial - reprinting 24" x 36" posters is not.

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    Replies
    1. That's a good idea! I recently printed a 3'x3' vinyl mat for about $20, so it's not necessarily all that expensive.

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  4. It's something I've been thinking about trying with IABSM's firing table for our games

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    Replies
    1. Check out http://www.bannersonthecheap.com/

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