On Thursday night Jon and I tried another play-test of my Danger and Dysentery rule system. We set up the terrain to represent a valley in between two ridges with a road running up the middle. It is important to note that this was hedgerow country and there were hedgerows running up the sides of the road on both sides. The French forces set up along one ridge and the Austrian forces opposite them on the other ridge.
French Forces: 5500 inf; 1 Foot Battery
Division Cmdr +2;
8 Battalions Line Infantry;
3 Battalions Light Infantry;
1 12pdr Foot Battery;
Austrian Forces: 5500 Inf; 1 Foot Battery
Division Cmdr +1;
7 Battalions Line Infantry;
3 Battalions Landwehr;
1 Battalion Jaegers;
1 7pdr Howitzer Battery;
The battle began with both sides advancing towards each other. The French 1st Brigade (6 Line Btns) advanced in column toward the road. The French 12-pdr Battery limbered up to get within range. They would be opposed by the Austrian Left Wing (4 Line Btns; 3 Landwehr Btns). On the French left, the 2nd Brigade (2 Line Btns; 3 Legere Btns) advanced into the woods, the Legere deploying into semi-skirmish formation. Opposite them the Austrian Jaeger Btn advanced to take up a position in the small wood near the pond. They were supported by 3 Line Btns taking up position in line behind the pond.
The Austrian left wing reached the road first and lined up along the length of the hedgerows. The French Brigade Commander advanced on them with his battalions in attack columns.
The French columns routed the Landwehr Battalions across from the farmhouse, but took heavy casualties from the Jaegers in the woods. When the French tried to exploit their success in this sector they were turned back as they came within range of the Austrian howitzer battery on the hill. The other French columns advanced into the Austrian Line and had mixed success. At this point the French 1st Brigade pulled back out of musket range to regroup and allow the 12pdr battery, which had now unlimbered, to soften up the Austrian line.
On the French Left the 2 leading Legere Battalions of the 2nd Brigade advanced to the edge of the wood and engaged in skirmish combat with the Jaegers and Line Infantry near the pond. Neither side was the clear winner in this skirmish but the Jaeger were forced to retreat. At this point the 3rd/4th Legere came up in column and routed an Austrian line Btn but were taken in flank by another and they pulled back.
Several battalions from both sides had routed from the field at this point and it was clear that while the Austrian center was broken the French could not exploit the breakthrough due to the presence of the Austrian battery on the hill. At this point the Austrian commander was killed while trying to rally a spent infantry battalion.
At this point it was decided that the Austrians would probably have abandoned the field but the French were heavily damaged.
Final Casualities: French: 9 Figures; Austrian: 18 Figures. Artillery did alot of damage to both sides but as usual the elite Austrian jaegers were very dangerous to get within range of.
Both side had their lines stretched along to far a frontage. The commanders never got over to the pond side of the field to rally troops or manage the attacks. Artillery is dangerous in this game, causing disorder and stopping advances if not actually killing men. The morale level of all line infantry in the game was conscript so they did not stand up to much punishment. The Landwehr melted away after two turns of combat and would not rally. The elite jaegers and French legere performed well but the Jaegers only had 4 figures so eventually left the field.
Overall it was a good game. Now I have to get more Austrain figures such as Cavalry and Grenadiers so we can move beyond a division level game.