Thursday, November 28, 2019

1745 AND AYE THAT!


On Monday Donald Adamson and I took forward a long term objective as we played the 1745 Campaign from ‘The Last Argument of Kings’ supplement.  I supplied the table and basic terrain and Donald provided all the troops.  The battles were fought with15mm figures and so we halved the movement and ranges in the Black Powder rules.  We used our usual alternative sequence for the rules – Initiative Moves, Shooting, Commanded Moves and Melee plus some specific amendments for the 18th century.

Donald took the part of the Hanoverian player and I was Bonnie Prince Charlie.  I rolled a 4 when I unfurled the Jacobite Royal standard at Glenfinnan giving me 5 Highland regiments so I decided to forego a reroll and marched at once to Edinburgh to meet the Sir John Cope’s army at Prestonpans.

Donald deployed his 4 infantry units in historical order with his 3 guns on their right and his 2 regiments of dragoons split to on either flank.  My right wing of 3 Highland regiments under Lord George Murray rapidly advanced and engaged Donald’s left of 2 battalions and Hamilton’s dragoons.  One infantry unit broke and fled from the terrifying Highland charge.  While the other retired and was destroyed in melee as the Highlanders followed them up.  The Dragoons repeatedly retired and then ran from the field.  My other 2 highland units screened this attack from the movement of the Hanoverian right wing.  I lost the Camerons in hand to hand combat but the arrival of the victorious right wing broke all the remaining Hanoverian units.
Prestonpans - Jacobites mass against Hanoverian left

Donald as General Cope prepares his victory message!

First Hanoverian Btn flees from the terrifying charge

Second  Hanoverian Btn broken in melee

Colonel Gardner leads his Regt home in rout

Once we did the recovery rolls I had lost no units whilst Donald had lost 3 infantry units and all his guns.  The survivors one infantry unit and the dragoons retired to join Field Marshal Wade.  I rolled badly on the Jacobite Victory table and got an upgrade to a single unit – I made a highland unit tough fighters. 

I decided to leave enough troops to effectively besiege Edinburgh and Stirling giving me another roll on the Jacobite Victory table – yet again an upgraded unit.  With only 2 units available to march into England I abandoned that plan and stayed in Scotland – giving me another roll on the Victory table –yet again an upgraded unit.  Luckily for me Donald’s Royal Navy Blockade roll was the worst he could get and I received 2 full units of Irish Piquets, a French Horse Regt and enough arms and money to make my last 2 Highland units tough fighters.

Facing an invasion of Scotland by Field Marshal Wade I decided to take the option of making a stand near Stirling and so brought on the Battle of Falkirk.  My Jacobites had their original 5 Highland regiments, now all tough fighters, the 2 full units of Irish Piquets, the French Horse Regt and 3 guns.  Donald allowing me to use the guns captured at Prestonpans – a true gentleman.  Donald as FM Wade had 14 Line infantry units, a Horse Regt, 3 Dragoon Regts and 4 guns. 

Being massively outnumbered but knowing my Highlanders Terrified all the units in the opposing army I decided to launch all the Highlanders supported by the French Horse at the Hanoverian left wing – consisting of 6 Dutch infantry Regts, a Horse Regt and a Dragoon Regt.  The Piquets and the 3 guns I deployed as a delaying force on my left wing.   So it was a bigger version of my Prestonpan’s plan.

It started well with the Highlanders and the French horse advancing a single move but then it all went wrong.  The British and French Horse met in melee and the French were pushed back 3 turns in a row before they broke.  Some truly abysmal dicing by me.  This continued and from turn 2 onwards I never managed to get the Highlanders to move.  Even using the Bonnie Princes rerolls and then his increasingly desperate follow me attempts.  Truly appalling!  The Highlanders just took more and more shooting hits without scoring much in return from the 3 Dutch battalions in the first line (they were deployed in 2 lines) and the 4 Hanoverian guns.  It was very sad.  One Jacobite highlight was a British Dragoon Regt charging a Highland unit in the rear and bouncing off!

On my left 6 British Infantry units and 2 Dragoon Regts broke the gallant Irish Piquets (2 regiments).  Watching the utter fiasco of the completely stalled Highland attack the Bonnie Prince turned his gallant steed and rode quickly for a French ship at Montrose.

It was good fun – Prestonpans was very historic and Falkirk turned into an even grimmer Culloden.

Link to all my photos on flickr
https://flic.kr/s/aHsmJMUZfH

Falkirk - the Jacobites massed to smash the Dutch wing of Wade's army

Irish Piquets doomed struggle

Highlanders stuck on the front of the ridge - immobile - Charles Edward thinking of best road to Montrose
Given the strength of the Hanoverian forces in England the Jacobites need very good rolls on the Jacobite Victory table to stand any chance of invading England.  Which I never got.  Also, they need to deploy more troops to besiege Edinburgh and Stirling Castles than the garrisons can deploy (1 Hanoverian unit is held to be in each garrison) – that commits 3 of the Jacobite units.  That rule needs changing and I think you need to set a minimum size of force that the Jacobites have to attain before they can even think of invading England.  Also another option is to give the Jacobites a +1 for each subsequent roll on the Victory table.  In addition, there has to be some option for the Jacobites avoiding Wade’s army, as happened historically, when invading England (perhaps a role of 4-6?) – If I was the Hanoverian player, I would always get Wade to march to Carlisle – what else would he do!

Anyway, great fun, and more than enough to make us want to do it again with suitable tweaks. Also we are now inspired to consider the 1715 Campaign.



JACOBITE 1745 Weapon Type
H_H
Shooting
Morale
Stamina
Useful Rules
Highland Clan Musket, Pistol, Sword Warband Infantry
7
2
4
3
First Fire, Terrifying
Lowlanders Musket Reg Infantry
6
3
4
3









French Piquets Musket Reg Infantry
4
2
4
2
First Fire, Reliable








Horse Sword, Carbine Cavalry
4
0/2
4
2
Mounted Infantry








Light Artillery Artillery Smoothbore
1
3-2-1
4
2












HANOVERIAN 1745 Weapon Type
H_H
Shooting
Morale
Stamina
Useful Rules
Guards Musket Reg Infantry
7
3
3
4
First Fire, Reliable
Line Infantry Musket Reg Infantry
6
3
4
3
First Fire
Highland Infantry Musket Reg Infantry
6
3
4
3
First Fire
Yeoman/Recruits Musket Reg Infantry
6
3
5
3
Freshly Raised
















Horse Sword Cavalry
8

4
3
Hvy Cav +1
Dragoons Sword, Carbine Cavalry
6/4
0/2
4
3
Mounted Infantry,
Freshly Raised?








Light Artillery Artillery Smoothbore
1
3-2-1
4
2












Small units reduce Hand to Hand by 2, Shooting by 1 and Stamina by 1.

First Fire           Add1 dice to first shooting

Skirmish           Can adopt skirmish formation

Reliable            Add1 to Command Level

Terrifying          Charged opponents must take a break test

Mounted Inf      Can combine a mount /dismount to any move order, cannot be combined    with a charge. On foot they skirmish.



PERIOD SPECIFIC HOUSE RULES – mainly from Last Argument of Kings

Cavalry which become Disordered by closing fire retire disordered one move.

Infantry with secure cover on a flank count this as a support in combat resolution.

Artillery, other than battalion guns, once deployed cannot be manhandled or relimbered but can turn in place as move.

Infantry in line cannot use more than 2 moves.

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