Sunday 24 October 2021

French Limber and Austrian Protestations

I decided to complete a French limber to give me the complete set – one limber for each nation. Once again, all the castings used are vintage Hinton Hunt ones including the limber itself.

1 x FN/36 Driver, Line Artillery Drivers Corps
1 x H3 French Gun Horse (near side horse)
1 x H4 French Gun Horse (off-side horse)
1 x AL/3 Limber

I didn’t have the HH painting instructions for the artillery driver, so this is a bit of a cobbled together uniform, but he looks pretty enough.

For some reason the Austrians seem to be annoyed that Napoleon captured Mack’s entire army at Ulm. The French were actually just trying to send engineers to help with the flood defences on the Danube when the bewildered Mack thought himself under attack and rode off at haste on a donkey.

Next stop for the Grande Arm̩e РVienna, we'd like to see the Opera House!

This is just the starting point of our campaign, turn one is now in progress.

Saturday 16 October 2021

Drums along the Danube

Rob and I are about to embark on another Campaign set this time in Austria. It will be very (very) loosely based on Napoleon’s Campaign of 1805 but as I don’t have many Austrian troops the Russians, Prussians and Swedes have all been drafted in on the allied side.

We’re using the same Campaign system as before with the locations of our various forces plotted on an Excel spreadsheet that we pass back and forth after each turn. Each page on the spreadsheet relates to a town on the map and our forces remain hidden until scouted by the enemy. An infantry force moves one town each turn and may scout one adjacent town prior to moving. A lone Light Cavalry unit moves up to two towns each turn and can scout two adjacent towns.

This is the campaign map (courtesy of Murat Maps). The yellow areas are the deployment areas for the Austro-Russian army, the black area is for the Prussians and the blue for the French (click to expand the map).

Scouting is carried out in secret by looking at the relevant page on the spreadsheet to see what, if any, enemy forces are present. The scouting unit may attack or retire depending on what remaining movement allowance it has. Using this system allows us to make hidden movement without the need for an umpire.

A sample of the spreadsheet used for hidden movement. Each page along the bottom corresponds to a town in the index.

At the start of the Campaign each player breaks down his OOB into 'Divisions' and Light Cavalry 'Brigades'. Each Division or Brigade must be assigned a named leader from a limited pool of commanders. A Division can have a maximum of three units (they can be all infantry, all cavalry, or a mixture of the two), one battery and a skirmisher Company of six figures. A cavalry Brigade is a single Light Cavalry unit with an option to include a horse artillery battery.

There is a stacking limit of two Divisions plus a Cavalry Brigade in any town, this has been kept deliberately low to ensure that any battles are quite small as I play all the games solo. Once during the Campaign Napoleon may initiate a Major Battle which allows a third Division to be added to an attacking stack, the defender then has a march to guns option to bring in a third Division to their own stack, although these will arrive during the game as reinforcements.

The campaign lasts for 15 turns and there are VPs to decide the winner. The turn record chart also shows the chances on a D6 of the Prussians being activated.

Rob has chosen to command the allies which means that I will be playing Napoleon again (so glad I painted all that Guard cavalry). We’ll be taking this a bit more sedately than the previous Campaign, not least because I’m still painting those Austrian Cuirassiers, but I will post the battle reports here as and when they come up.

Saturday 9 October 2021

Austrian Limber

Having produced a limber for the Russians it seemed only fair to knock one up for the Austrians. This didn’t take too much effort as I painted the limber several years ago and never got around to completing the set.

The horses are artillery draught horse H/1 and H/2, Driver AN.58 and Limber AL/5

The horses were reassigned from my four-horse team for the RHA so the only figure I had to paint was the limber horse rider AN.58 Driver, positioned for riding horse (H/1) Artillery Drivers’ Corps (wearing shako). The HH painting instructions for this figure state “Sword Belt Black Leather” but as I couldn’t see a waist belt, I’ve assumed this was the shoulder strap. All the figures, including the limber are vintage castings.

Here's the full team together with Austrian gun A.5.

I have reverted to two-horse limber teams as a four-horse team takes up too much table space and would involve painting too many horses for my liking. The only Nationality now without a limber is the French so I must do something about that.