It's a great battle to do because there is so much going on, so why change it? The answers are simple. Firstly, I haven't re-based my Austrians yet (that's a pretty big reason). Secondly, we've fought it before - lots. Thirdly, taking a historical engagement and changing it sometimes leads to a much better game because more balance can be introduced - thus making it a closer, harder fought, more exciting game.
For this game we will use our heavily amended classic Piquet rules with domino decided initiative swing.
So, the background for Mochkirch (not Hochkirch) is this.
The Prussians intend to make a surprise attack on the Russians, strung out on their route of march, at dawn. The army has been split up into various battle groups and these have made a series of night marches around the Russian positions to establish themselves on their starting lines before dawn. The exact deployment of the Russians and the exact nature of the terrain is not known but it is hoped that a multi-pronged surprise attack, at first light, will cause enough confusion to carry the day.
The Russians are encamped along their route of march. Reports have come into the Russians that outlying pickets have been pushed in by Prussian forces, but the picture is confusing because the enemy is not showing a specific direction of advance. Russian forces have been ordered to stand-to in their present positions and await the dawn, further intelligence and fresh orders.
To get the game going quickly I have chosen to pre-deploy the Russians roughly alongside the road with a few outlying pickets. Their are four infantry commands, three commands of five units each plus artillery support, and one command of two units. There are two four unit regular cavalry commands, plus three leaderless commands of Cossacks each two units strong. They are all standing-to and ready for action.
The Prussians have been organised into seven commands. There are two powerful cavalry commands each of five units. There are five infantry commands: Three commands of three units plus artillery support and two commands of four units . These will be deployed at random around the table edges from move one. Some will probably not arrive immediately.
Around the table edge I have placed eight playing cards (one to eight of diamonds). I have sorted a deck of eighteen other playing cards (one to eight of hearts, one to eight of clubs, and two jokers). Before the game starts the Prussian player will deal a card to each of his commands. The Prussian player may look at the cards, the Russian player cannot.
- A heart indicates that the command will start the game deployed on table.
- A club indicates that the command has been delayed and will arrive on table, on a Stratagem card, at some point after the start of the game, by rolling a successful other difficulty die.
- The number on the card indicates which jump off point (diamond card) the command will use. Units arriving at the start of the game may deploy straight in from the table edge but must be more than 12" from the nearest enemy (see below). Commands arriving late will deploy up to 6" in from the table edge. No command may deploy on a frontage of more than 20".
- A joker indicates that the command can arrive on time, or be delayed (at the player's choice), at any sanctioned jump off point.
- Furthermore, the C-in-C counts as a 'super joker'. He can be placed with one command after the deployment cards are dealt.
At the end of the game victory is awarded to the player holding the most villages. because these command the main road. Holding all three gives a heroic victory. The hamlet (the single town section settlement) is not a village.
I hope you like the look of the scenario. I think it has the look of a good one.
Last but not least, three shots of the Harran game at Fiasco last week. The game moved swiftly to a Crusader victory with Bohemond and Tancred riding to the rescue of the Edessanes.