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2017 - Number 46


French Setting Up in the North

Black Powder Napoleonics:
Chateuax-Thierry, 1815

The SNS Group decided to do a series of Napoleonic games for the last quarter of 2017, and asked me if I would run a large "what if" game set in 1815. Since we wanted to include Austrians and Russians to the large Waterloo campaign forces the group has collected, I created a plausible game set around Chateaux-Thierry, later in 1815.

The premise was that Napoleon had either won a narrow victory or a bloody draw at Waterloo, but retained an intact army. Without a decisive victory he would have been forced to fall back toward Paris, to cover the city from both the Anglo-Prussian forces following him and also the Austro-Russian forces advancing into France from the Rhine.

French Young Guard Holding the Center

French Forces Holding the Hinge in Their Lines

The timing proved fortuitous, as Warlord Games released a great new Black Powder supplement on the 1812 campaign, which included additional rules and information covering the Austrian and Russian armies, matching up nicely with the special rules in the "Albion Triumphant" books on the Penninsula and Waterloo campaigns for the French, British and Prussians.

The actual game was great fun and a visual feast. It was extremely close, as some French successes against the Anglo-Prussian forces were offset by gains made by the Austro-Russian forces. The hinge, where the French line bent on the l-shaped table, saw particularly heavy fighting. British successes on their right were offset by French gains on their left. As Wellington said of Waterloo, it was a close run thing.

Looking South From Wellington's Hill

Austrian Cavalry Advance Toward the Southern Heights

Great fun was had, and it got me inspired to look at a big Borodino game at some point in the future!

The Austrian and French Commanders Face Off

Southern End of the French Line

Good View of the Whole Table

Russians Line the Allied Left

Cavalry Scrum on the Southern Heights

Russian Batteries Pound the French Center

Austrian Infantry Make Gains in the Center

Young Guard Counterattacks, But is Held

French Cavalry Pentrated the Austro-Prussian Gap

The Prussians Are Pushed Back, But Hold

Heavy Fighting Near the Hinge

The French Manage to Hold the Chateaux

Cuirassier Thunder Forward

Heavy Fighting on the British Left

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