Saturday 27 March 2021

The Battle of Huerta de Pablo - Battle report, turn 1.

As I mentioned yesterday, I'm going to play this game over the next few days and do short reports as I go. I played for about half an hour last night, and about the same today. Turn one has been concluded and the build up for both sides seems to be taking shape nicely. All of the following shots, except the initial deployment shot (first pic), were taken at the end of the turn.

Episode 1: The Build Up

The British stormed the early part of the turn with a first initiative of 16 points. Before the French commander's girlfriend could say "Oh là là!", both 1st and 2nd divisions (8,000 & 5,000 men) were arriving in the vicinity of Huerta de Pablo, the 2nd on the south eastern road [C].
By the end of turn 1, both had begun to deploy, and the artillery of 2nd division was playing on 2nd Btn 4th Vistula who had deployed in front of the French camp.
Meanwhile, French 1st Division was using what time it had to deploy in readiness for the upcoming British assault. They occupied all of the 'building sections' of Pablo de Huerta (including the orchard, which I'm using as a two section town piece - after all, it's walls look pretty formidable).

I have to confess, at this point, that I didn't have a clue what to do with French 1st Hussars which were retreating ahead of the British advance by 2nd Division. Initially I thought to concentrate them with the rest of their division in the NE sector of the table and moved them through Huerta de Pablo to get the road bonus but, then I had second thoughts (gave them fresh orders) and, having passed through Huerta' I had them circuit back round to take position on the eastern flank of 1st Division. A long, circuitous about face: it all looked rather graceful.
French reinforcements also began to arrive via the NE road [D]. This was French 3rd Division (5000 men). They headed south to reinforce Huerta de Pablo, taking the direct route via High Farm Hill.
The only moment of high drama in the turn, came when 13th Light Dragoons tried to take out the French battery on Pine Hill. It had been trained on Cresta de Pablo and the 13th thought to take it in the flank. They came so close to doing so. In the nick of time it redeployed to engage the oncoming cavalry with a blast of cannister. In the morale challenge that followed the 13th were halted, shaken (that's the broken wheel marker - because their wheels just came off).

Note that I'm testing some new rules regarding what constitutes a charge. Nothing gets to go straight in, everything has to stop at 2" before it charges home on a melee resolution, or vs flank, shaken or artillery on a fresh move card. It's all working rather nicely. Also note that I'm not allowing shaken units to charge - which puts the 13th in a bit of a tight spot. It's all part of a broader attempt to get the line Vs column thing to work at it's best. 
And that was that. Turn one, done and dusted. 

As for the wider British plan, with a lot of troops coming up from the south, I've decided to send half of 1st Division (Highlanders, Guards and the divisional horse artillery) to seize San Pablo, or at least contest it. If the rest of the army can throw the French out of Huerta de Pablo quickly.... 

Also, I'm trying this new font - Spectral - tell me if you like it. 


pancerni said...

The font is nice, the figures and terrain first class, the battle report exactly what I like in style.

Sgt Steiner said...

Love the figures and terrain, liking the ongoing report. As to font no real preference as long as its easily readable which this is.

Bill Slavin said...

That is a beautiful looking table and very nicely done figures. I like your report writing as well, but would appreciate larger pictures so I could make out the action. Possible? But that's a minor issue - nice work.


Normally, if you click on an image it enlarges, and you can usually enlarge that again by clicking on it again. Is that not working?

Friends Of General Haig said...

Beautiful looking table and lovely troops! The font is nice an clear looking to me.

Ray Rousell said...

What a brilliant looking bash!

Bill Slavin said...

Yes, clicking is working, thanks! I thought I had tried that and it wasn’t. Nice to see your work up close!