Monday, November 17, 2014

Fere Champenoise, 1814, AAR

My friend, Jerry, and I recently played another 814 Napoleonic game using Volley and Bayonet. I found the scenario at The Free Napoleonics Scenarios site
It's a small scenario, but Volley and Bayonet handled it well as a two player game.

This was the classic situation; an all cavalry command attacks an enemy comprised mainly of infantry. Can the cavalry possibly win?

Well if half the infantry are conscripts, and the rules model the effects of the rain correctly...

Jerry took the Allies, all cavalry. I commanded the French, two depleted "corps," with two small cavalry divisions.

There is a long ravine which is marked by lichen. Each turn the first player rolls for rain. The effects of rain are:
-All movement is halved
-The ravine becomes disordering terrain
-All fire casualties receive a saving throw 

The Allied Cavalry advances

The French

The Allies surround and destroy a French division that appeared on the northern edge of the table

The crippling flank attack

Cossacks on the flank

It was a hard fought game. Almost half of the turns had rain. That slowed down my withdrawal and at one point I made a mistake; I stacked my units in the middle directly behind a cavalry screen. If Jerry could rout the cavalry, they would rout down the line spreading chaos.
Surely he wouldn't see my predicament.

Of course he saw it. He attacked and in two turns destroyed half of my army--the good half. His Cossacks once again attacked my disordered and routed units. The last three games in which the Cossacks have been on the table have seen them destroy French units.

My Conscripts fell back into the town. As bad as things were, Jerry still needed to take the town to win and time was running out.

On the last turn of the game, Jerry destroyed my last units and advanced in the town.

Great fun.
Last stand of the French


  1. Definitely a nice change of pace, and a battle I haven't seen gamed before.

  2. Great game, Mike. Rainy days and ravines can make for an exciting field of battle.

  3. Looks great Mike! Great report and pictures! Thanks for sharing!


  4. Excellent Mike! Are you going to do any more games based on battles from 1814, or is it on to 1815 from here?

    1. I still need to post my AAR for the Battle of Paris. I'm looking at Bar sur Aub, but don't know if I'll get it in this year or not.

  5. Great looking game and AAR and love the fact that you can add some spice to the V&B rules.

    Also good to see a very different Napoleonics scenario.

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