Wednesday 21 February 2018

Carlist AAR Storming the reboubt

Had a cracking little game at Steves place this Thursday.

I had to throw it together fairly quickly but it worked quite well with a couple of reservations, as usual for Carlists we were using Black Powder with some amends to create a brigade break test and fire before movement.

Table was 8x6 feet with a small hill near the Isabelino entry point, a small wood and a recently erected redoubt slap bang in the middle occupied by a Brigade of 3 Carlist battalions and a gun.

Mark would have 5 Brigades coming on over moves 1,2 and 3 where Steve's reinforcements were force marching to his support and would arrive on the roll of a dice so he never knew what would turn up when or even where as the entry point was also randomised.

Marks moved first with a Guards Brigade of 3 battalions and a gun with also a militia brigade of 2 small battalions and a squadron of line cavalry.

In Steves turn he had a squadron of cavalry arrive on his far left flank whilst a mountain gun and tiny unit of skirmishers arrived right over on his right flank near his single squadron of lancers.

Move two and the first two brigades push forward followed by two further Brigades, on the Liberal right the French Foreign Legion have two battalion and a squadron of cavalry with a mountain gun, to the left 4 battalions of infantry and another mountain gun. These start to push around either flank

Steve gets first blood with his artillery on the guards brigade and then has a battalion of Portuguese volunteers to his rear with another squadron of cavalry to his left.

The game is moving on now, Mark realises that he has to push on quickly and take advantage of the delays in Steves reinforcements.
The Alavese Guides come on for Carlists on the right whilst on the left the Legion Lancers engage the Carlist Cavalry, defeating the first which breaks and forcing a break test on the second which immediately follows suit leaving the whole Carlist flank wide open.
Pressing his luck Marks guards Brigade storm the earthworks. Unfortunately at this point we learn just how hard that is in practice without damaging units first. Steves Carlists get a +2 to their saving role meaning that they are saving on anything but a roll of a 1, at the same time as the White caps are tough fighters they get to re-roll a miss, the Guards are pushed back with heavy losses.
Meanwhile the Legion Lancers form behind the Portuguese volunteers ready to charge their rear as the rest of the Legion press forward into the exposed flank.

In Steves turn he fires into the retreating guards and forces a brigade break test which is promptly failed and sees the whole brigade break and retire off table. With a big hole in the centre Marks decides to try force the flank of the position. pulling his cavalry back from the far side of the wood and looking for a gap to exploit.
Steves troops are now in a  firefight with Marks Militia brigade and the Legion are in close range of the Portuguese. At this important point Steve gets three battalions of Carlist reinforcements right where he needs them behind the entrenchments but fails to get them marching forward on his orders test. His volley into the Legion is ineffective and they are now poised to charge the Portuguese.
Into the next turn the Legion volley the Portuguese ensuring they are disordered and then charge in breaking them immediately. The Legion form up ready to take on the veteran white caps who have taken a dis-order from the Legion skirmishers.

Things are touch and go on both flanks now as the forces start to equal out. but Steve is still struggling to get his reinforcements moving. The fore fight with the Militia is taking a heavy toll especially as the light gun gets into a position to enfilade and gets double dice (which all miss!)
Charge!! The Legion Storm into the earthworks and go bayonet to bayonet with the White Caps. The minus to White Caps for the dis-order and the Legion charge bonus prove the decider and the White Caps are defeated and break after their morale.
On the other flank the firefight continues with Liberals getting slightly the worst of it as the reserve brigade moves up and the horse artillery comes into action. Mark decides there is no room for his cavalry and risks sending them across the table to join the Legion on the open Carlist left flank.
The brave Legionaires now try their third successive charge, unfortunately this is one charge too far and they are forced back. Just as Steve gets his reinforcements back under command and begins to march them on table.
After an exhausting forced march the Cavalry brigade appear ready to save the day, unfortunately its already clear that the Isabelino's cant take and hold the earthworks and they will be just in time to cover the retreat of the gallant Legion and remainder of the other two brigades

A close run thing and very well fought game. We found that troops in earthworks were probably a little too difficult to winkle out unless you can bombard them and have overwhelming force. Something to remember for next time.

Other than that it worked really well for a quick game thrown together, a fairly decisive result in about 3 1/2 hours.


  1. Smart looking game. Sounded like fun.

    1. certainly was Paul, I think BP suits this middle sized encounter with 2-4 players for ane vening.

  2. I would not have liked to be in the place of the attackers, to take a redoubt had to be very impressive...Impressive is your report, a spectacumar and bloody looking game!

    1. Thanks Phil, still cant decice if it was too hard to take the redoubt or not. Maybe the defenders needed softenign up first.

  3. Very nice. Time for me to resume my Carlist War painting. I'm nearly there.

    1. Glad I got yhr creative juices flowing enjoy

  4. Lovely looking game. Beautiful figures and terrain, and sounds like a cracker of a combat too.

    1. Thanks Peter it was a real pleasure to be honest.

  5. great looking game and sounded like everyone had fun, which is the important thing. : )