Following the disaster of Napoleon's invasion of Russia in 1812, a new Coalition formed against him. In response to this, Napoleon hastily assembled an army of just over 200,000 consisting largely of inexperienced, barely trained recruits and severely short of horses. He crossed the Rhine into Germany to link up with remnants of his old Grande Armée, and to quickly defeat this new alliance before it became too strong. On April 30 Napoleon crossed the river Saale, advancing on Leipzig in three columns led by an advanced guard. His intention was to work his way into the Coalition's interior lines, dividing their forces and defeating them in detail before they could combine. But due to inexperienced cavalrymen and faulty reconnaissance, he was unaware of 73,000 allied troops under Wittgenstein and Blücher concentrating on his right flank to the south. Marshal Ney's corps was surprised and attacked on the road from Lützen to Leipzig.
Napoleon was visiting the 1632 battlefield, playing tour guide with his staff by pointing to the sites and describing the events of 1632, when he heard the sound of cannons. He immediately cut the tour short and rode off towards the direction of the artillery fire. Arriving on the scene he ordered the Marshal to make a fighting withdrawal towards Lützen. Meanwhile he sent Ney reinforcements which would take up strong, defensive positions in and around the villages south of the town. Once these divisions had held the allied attack Napoleon, leading the reserves would come around the allied flank and counterattack.
|Overall situation map - from wikipedia|
OUTLINE OF SCENARIO
For the design of this game each historical division becomes a Black Powder brigade. I have changed the arrival points of some of the French reinforcements to spread the action further across the table so that it is easier for all the players. Each side has 3 command levels - Brigade, Corps and the CinC. So some of the commanders of the small Russian Corps are not represented. The allied Corps commanders are Blucher, Yorck, Wizingerode and Grand Duke Constantine.
The French have 2 brigades deployed on the table at the beginning of the game with a local reserve of 5 brigades marching onto the table. They have a further 6 brigades distant reserve including the Guard and the Emperor himself.
The allied Prussians and Russians have an initial attack force of 12 brigades, 3 on table at the beginning with another 9 appearing over the first 3 to 4 turns, and a further 11 in distant reserve.
Most of the French infantry were very poor quality often untrained and unfit and the troop ratings for the game have been modified to reflect this.
|The game map|
To simplify the game we used the normal Napoleonic troop ratings but with the following changes.
All infantry have “must form square” rule.
Russian, Prussian and Old Guard infantry have stamina of 4 and morale of 3+ but no other special rules.
Russian infantry are STOIC - so can re-roll first break test. Russian line infantry are POOR SHOTS and get -1 to shooting.
French Guard infantry are RELIABLE when in attack column.
French line infantry have morale of 5+.
French Marie Louises also have 5 hand to hand dice, are POOR SHOTS I.e. -1 to shooting and LEVY 3+ I.e. must score 3 or more to recover disorder at end of their turn.
French line infantry and artillery can never get a +1/+2 for march columns on roads.
To simplify this big game no mixed formations are allowed I.e. units with skirmishers thrown out.
All the units were counted as BP standard sized units.
The French reinforcements should arrive in march columns coming down the entry roads (battalion by battalion) so it will take a couple of moves for a complete command to come on.
The allies had taken hours forming up before they moved of - so can come on deployed across a front already in attack columns and/or lines.
French command starts at 7 and then increases to 8 on arrival of Ney.
Allied command is 8.
Napoleon is a level 9 commander and increases the rating of any French generals with 24” range to 9.
Blucher has the ‘Marschall Vorwats’ rule - automatically succeeds when he rallies a unit and recovers D3 hits except the last one of course.
Each move is 30 minutes. Game starts at 11:30 and ends at 20:00
We used our usual House Rules but in addition changed the rules for built up areas as the villages changed hands repeatedly in this battle.
Built Up Areas
+1 Morale save
+2 Combat result modifier
We also tried a version of the Broken Brigade rule from Pike and Shot simplified on the day to the following:
A brigade is deemed broken if at the start of a turn more than half of its units (ignoring guns) are lost.
A unit is lost if:
a) it has been destroyed
b) it is shaken
Effect on units in broken brigades:
1) Units that have already left the table cannot return.
2) Shaken units within 12” of the enemy must retire except if occupying buildings, defences or in square.
3) Shaken units are allowed to make a free single retire move even if disordered. Guns that do so are abandoned.
4) Unshaken units in a broken brigade can be given normal orders.
ORDERS OF BATTLE AND DEPLOYMENT
ARMY OF THE MAIN - NAPOLEON
III ARMY CORPS NEY
8TH INF DIV SOUHAM* 6 BTN AND 1 FT GUN
10TH INF DIV GIRARD* 6 BTN# AND 1 FT GUN
CORPS CAV * LA, HU AND 1 HS GUN
THESE ARE DEPLOYED ON TABLE AT BEGINNING*
9TH INF DIV BRENIER 6 BTN AND 1 FT GUN
11TH INF DIV RICARD 6 BTN AND 1 FT GUN
39TH INF DIV MARCHAND 4 BTN# AND 1 FT GUN
VI ARMY CORPS MARMONT
20th INF DIV COMPANS 4 BTN AND 1 FT GUN
21st INF DIV BONET 4 BTN AND 1 FT GUN
22nd INF DIV FRIEDERICHS 4 BTN# AND 1 FT GUN
ARMY RESERVE MORTIER
OLD GUARD DIV 4 BTN AND 2 HVY GUN
YNG GUARD DIV 6 BTN AND 2 HVY GUN
GD CAV DIV 1 HG, DRG AND 1 HS GUN
“ 2 LA, CHaCH AND 1 HS GUN
IV ARMY CORPS BERTRAND !
12TH INF DIV MORAND 4 BTN# AND 1 FT GUN
XI ARMY CORPS MCDONALD !
31ST INF DIV FRESSINET 4 BTN# AND 1 FT GUN
1ST CAV CORPS LATOUR MAUBOURG
1ST CAV DIV 2 CUIR AND 1 HS GUN
2ND CAV DIV DRG, HU
# MARIE LOUISES
! CORPS COMMANDERS NOT PRESENT
At commencement of hostilities (11:30 AM)
8th Division, III Corps near Gross Gorschen.
III Corps Cavalry northeast of Gross Gorschen.
10th Division, III Corps near Starsiedel.
9th Division, III Corps on the road near Eisdorf at table edge.
11th Division, III Corps stacked up behind 9th Division.
VI Corps (Marmont) at table edge on road from Lutzen stacked up division behind division.
FRENCH REINFORCEMENTS - EXPECTED ARRIVAL TIMES
12:30 Marechal Ney on the road from Lutzen
14:00 Napoleon with the Guard Cavalry on the road from Lutzen
15:00 IV Corps at table edge in rear of Starsiedel
16:00 Guard Infantry and Artillery on the road from Lutzen
16:00 XI Corps at Meyhen.
16:30 39th Division, III Corps on road in rear of Eisdorf.
17:00 I Cavalry Corps on table edge
ALLIED ARMY WITTGENSTEIN
AVANT GARD KARPOV* 4 COSSACK REGTS AND 1 HS GUN
PRUSSIAN I CORPS BLUCHER
1st PR INF BRIG Von Klux* 4 BTN AND HVY, FT GUN
2nd PR INF BRIG Von Ziethen* 4 BTN AND HVY, FT GUN
*THESE ARE DEPLOYED ON TABLE AT BEGINNING
3rd PR INF BRIG Von Roder 4 GD BTN AND HVY, FT GUN
I Pr Cps CAV Von Mutius HU, LA AND 1 HS GUN
Pr CAV Division Von Dolffs 2 DR AND 1 HS GUN
PRUSSIAN II CORPS YORK
4th INF BRIG Hunerbein 4 BTN AND HVY, FT GUN
5th INF BRIG Horn 4 BTN AND HVY, FT GUN
II Cps CAV Von Steinmetz 2 HU AND 1 HS GUN
RUSSIAN 1ST ARMY CORPS WINZINGERODE
1st INF CORPS BERG
“ 1 Luknov 3 BTN AND HVY GUN
“ 2 Kasachovski 3 BTN AND FT GUN
2ND INF CORPS EUGEN
“ 1 Shachavskoi 3 BTN AND HVY GUN
“ 2 Pychnitski 3 BTN AND FT GUN
RU CAV CPS TRUVELTSKOI
“ 1 Lanskoi 2 HU AND 1 HS GUN
“ 2 Panchou DR, LA AND 1 HS GUN
“ 3 Obolenski 2 COSS AND 1 HS GUN
RUSSIAN RESERVE ARMY CORPS GD CONSTANTINE PAVLOVICH
GREN DIV KONOVNITZIN
“ 1 Sulima 3 BTN AND HVY GUN
“ 2 Zwileniev 3 BTN AND FT GUN
GUARD DIV LAVROV
“ 1 Rosen 3 BTN AND HVY GUN
“ 2 Udom 3 BTN AND FT GUN
GD CAV Div Schewitch DR, HU, GD COSS AND 1 HS GUN
CUIRASSIER CORPS GALITZIN
1ST Depradov 2 CU REGTS AND 1 HS GUN
2ND Duka 2 CU REGTS AND 1 HS GUN
ALLIED DEPLOYMENT NOTES
At commencement of hostilities (11:30 AM)
Davidov's Advanced Guard on table anywhere on south table edge.
Von Ziethen and Von Klux’s brigades on table on the Monarchenhugel.
Attempting to march onto the table at the Monarchenhugel Von Roder and Von Mutius’ brigades.
Dolff’s Cavalry arrives turn after Von Mutius has got onto the table
Yorck’s Corps deployed behind Blucher. (Historical) No element of this command can enter until the turn after all of Bluchers troops are on table.
Truveltskoi’s Division arrives turn after Dolffs has got onto the table.
14:00 Eugen Corps
14:30 Berg Corps
15:00 Grenadier Division & 1st Cuirassier Division
15:30 Guard Division & 2nd Cuirassier Division
17:30 Guard Cavalry