Wednesday 11 October 2023

AAR Rear Guard Action after the Boyne

We were keen to get Chris's late 17th century stuff on table again so he organised a portion of his now formidable collection for a game in Jacobite Ireland.

This assumes James had managed to cobble together some of his retreating Jacobites for a rearguard during the retreat from the Boyne rather than buggering off and leaving his army to its fate (The Irish referred to him as James the Turd for a reason).

Steve would command 4 squadrons of heavy horse, 9 regiments of foot including 3 of guard, 2 medium guns and 2 dismounted companies of dragoons in a skirmishing roll.

Trying to slow him down I have also 4 squadrons of horse, 6 regiments of foot, with 2 being guard, a light gun and a company of skirmishing dragoons. Chris warned me before the off that the Jacobites were outnumbered and outclassed so no expectations and very much a playtest for some units and rules not yet used.

Rules for this period we use Pike and Shotte with some amends particularly for the foot. 

So a few shots of part of Chris's lovely 17th century collection to set the scene.

Steve pushes his central Brigade of Guards forward to take on my line, I am almost immediately in trouble with my right hand regiment coming under fire from one guards regiment and 2 medium guns.

Move one and I am already dis-ordered, oh dear!
I charge the Jacobite Cavalry and Steve counter charges. Steve's morale save bonus sees him win the first round of melee, he follows this up with sweeping charges (Break through's essentially) All four of my squadrons are defeated and forced back with two of them dis-ordered. These will be unable to counter charge next go. We realise at this stage that pushing squadrons forward as supports is counter productive and doesn't really give enough of an advantage, they are much better kept in reserve to throw in later.

I fire my first volley back at Steve and get a bit of luck. Unfortunately his dice are on fire and he saves nearly all of them.

Another volley from Steves guard and another unit dis-ordered and forced to a moral test, which it fails and retreats.. The Guard have platoon firing giving them an extra Dice, my Guard also have this but I only have the two battalions. Nice rule to give a bonus to the better troops.
Unfortunately I have attached my commander to this unit to try remove some casualties, he is mortally wounded and removed from play. 
A further cavalry charge sees all of my horse driven off and my flank wide open, although Stevs Guard and Huegenots on the Williamite left are still only just getting into action, my left is in tatters already.

Steves cavalry now charges the flank of my foot and not surprisingly wipes them out, with one unit gone and another shaken the brigade is deemed destroyed and all three regiments along with the gun removed from play.
On my right Steves foot our now getting going and his first volley yeilds, yes you guessed it, four sixes. I save just one, the unit is dis-ordered by a six so in a little trouble.

At this point we call it a night and a comprehensive Williamite victory, well done Steve.
With 2 thirds of the Jacobite force destroyed and half the Williamites yet to be engaged a resounding victory to Williams forces and no Doubt James is galloping off to leave more of his Catholic subjects in the lurch.

Good fun game, cavalry wasnt really what we wanted in terms of gaming and compatibility so Chris will be looking to tweak this for future games, but overall great fun and what a lovely collection.


  1. Lovely looking collection and battle 👍

  2. What a spectacle, a very nice table and smart looking troops. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Beautiful table, and another spur to James' horse!

  4. It’s a grand collection. Just pleased as punch with it. Have to go bigger next time with further rules tweaking. Cheers, Chris

  5. What stunning terrain AND figures Roger - superb work by Chris! Some (buit not all) of the miniatures look like Front Rank?

    1. I can’t take more than a fraction of the credit. Most of minis painted by Steve and most are indeed Front Rank. Cheers, Chris

  6. Super looking game and table and those figures!! Top notch all round!!