Saturday, 1 October 2016

Planning Vintage Leipzig

When Roy and I were sorting out the details of Vintage Waterloo we had the luxury of playing a test game which was very valuable particularly in terms of working out deployment. We won’t be having the same opportunity for Vintage Leipzig so I’ve been trying to give as much thought as possible to the way we should run the game.

Waterloo was a relatively easy battle to game as it was fought on a single day over a quite small area. Leipzig presents more of a challenge as it was fought over several days across a large area with vast forces. Clearly we won’t be able to accurately portray either the terrain or all the troops involved in the real battle in one day’s play so it will be necessary to scale everything down while trying to retain the flavour of the epic struggle fought out in October 1813.

Roy has two tables in his wargame room the larger of these is 12’ x 5’ and the smaller is 8’ x 4’. The plan is to utilize both of these with the large table representing the area south of Leipzig and the smaller one the area to the north. The suburbs of Leipzig will be represented on both tables and there will be three villages spaced out along the tables to act as victory locations. The rest of the terrain will be relatively open and flat to allow space to deploy the 2,800+ figures we will be using in the game.

The southern table - 12' x 5' - showing deployment areas

Victory Conditions - at the end of play victory will be determined as follows:

French Decisive Victory – if all of Leipzig and all villages are in French hands
French Substantial Victory – if all of Leipzig and 2 villages are in French hands
French Marginal Victory – if part of Leipzig and 2 villages are in French hands
Allied Decisive Victory – if all of Leipzig and 2 villages are in allied hands
Allied Substantial Victory – if part of Leipzig and 2 villages are in allied hands
Allied Marginal Victory – if all villages are in allied hands

The northern table - 8' x 4' - showing deployment areas

The order of battle has been scaled down to provide four commands to each side giving us a total of eight players which is as many as we can comfortably accommodate. I’m hoping the game will provide some interesting challenges to both sides in particular the fight for the northern table where the allies will outnumber the French but the difference in troop quality should balance things out.

French OOB

Allied OOB

Reserves are kept off table and can be deployed at any point on the owning army’s base line from the start of turn two. Troops will not be allowed to switch between tables so deciding when and how to use reserves will require some careful thought.

One valid criticism of my rules Muskets and Marshals is that Old Guard units rated as A+ are fairly indestructible in melee (although they can be shot just as easily as lowly Landwehr). So for this game Old Guard units will be rated A and Young/Middle Guard will be rated B which can be justified by the drop in quality of units following the campaign of 1812.

In total there will be at least 95 units of infantry, 35 of cavalry and 39 artillery batteries in play in this game and whatever happens it should look quite spectacular. There will of course be copious photos posted here following the game.

Oh, and I forgot to mention there will be a RHA rocket battery…


Heinz-Ulrich von Boffke said...

2800+ figures??!! I cannot wait to peruse the photographs. Your plans all sound great and delightfully Gilder-esque. Wasn't there a discussion of Leipzig by the great man in a couple of early issues of Miniature Wargames?

Best Regards,


Stryker said...

Thanks Stokes - hopefully I'll be able to do the game justice with my trusty camera!

KEV. said...

Good to see some of the Pre-Planning for such a big affair as Leipzig- Best wishes with the Project. Regards. KEV.

The Good Soldier Svjek said...

This sounds spectacular - can't wait to see it !, Tony

Wellington Man said...

I see you've left out those treacherous Saxons and Wurttembergers! Nevertheless, will there be a chance that part of the French army will defect?

Stryker said...

The Saxons are in Marmont's corps and we did wonder about having a chance that they might change side during the game but it might be a rather unsatisfactory rule for the French players!

Matt said...

Can't wait to see the carnage created with that many targets in range of the rocket battery!

lewisgunner said...

We'll have Saxons and Poles . i have a couple more Prussuan Freikorps units arriving so we might be aboe to shoehorn them in. A friend s cming over on the day before to do a layout test. It woun't be as neat as Ian's Martinet style dployment, but it will tell us that we can get everyone on the table.
Marcus Hinton took part in a large reconstruction of Leipzig that made the national press. I wonder if anyone has any pictures of that event?

Stryker said...

Matt - I think all the allied players will be wanting the rocket battery transferred to their own command!

Roy - yes it would be fascinating to know more about that refight.

Vintage Wargaming said...

The programme for the Battle Commemoration Unit's Leipzig in 1973 is posted on Vintage Wargaming - you can find it here:

Its one of the posts which would benefit from a set of new scans.

Stryker said...

Thanks Clive!