Monday, April 27, 2015

Battle of Waterloo

After months of planning, painting and making terrain, fourteen players from MN and WI gathered to fight Waterloo, based on the historic units and strengths present.  Not a precise refight, in that players were allowed to modify their deployment and a variable table meant the Prussians could arrive very early, or not at all.  Rules were Empire (V), the Emperor was represented by Chuck Meyer of Rochester, MN and the Duke of Wellington by Dan Wideman of Neenah, WI.

Being a huge battle played out over two days, the report will come in two installments to prevent sensory overload.  Lots of beautiful eye candy to be seen here.  One explanation for the pictures you will see: most of our units were painted at or near full strength.  Between rebuilding an army and attrition from Quatre Bras and Ligny, units were well under-strength.  So if you see a black ring over a figure it signifies simply that it doesn't count.  A white or other colored ring indicates a casualty.  Some unfortunate clutter, but better than clipping a figure off each stand.  Click to enlarge pictures.

Distant view of the tables; all are in play for the game.
Looking the long way down the center, sunken road and ridge on the left.
Hougoumont was hand made by Paul Alaniz.  Most of the terrain by Dan
Wideman and team.
The lines are drawn.... (har-har) 
d'Erlon is on the left this time.
Reille on the right. 
Lobau's VI Corps and la Garde on the (decorated) back table.
9:30AM and the grand battery works their way to the middle ridge.
 As  the grand battery rolled forward the allied artillery withdrew to the back side of the ridge.  While this preserved them from fire, it also meant that the French formations to follow would do so without fear of bombardment.  It also meant the death of the garrison of la Haye Sainte.  After two "hours" of bombardment I and II Corps rolled forward with cavalry trailing behind.

Reille advances in a combination of lines and columns.
Reille has a knife-point attack while protecting against surprises from either flank.
Lobau and la Garde advance a bit.  Threat or distraction?
d'Erlon's two leading divisions with corps cavalry engage the allies
with a brigade of cavalry in immediate support.  The others  in the
corps failed to activate their orders.
We had lots of substitute regiments, so a label on the movement
tray was very helpful.
Overhead view of I Corps attack.  Progress is immediately made.
Despite the initial shock effect of British fire values the attack progressed.  On the left, with cavalry charging to force the allies into square and with some supporting bombardment there was more success.  Marechal Ney lead one of the divisions, while d'Erlon urged the other forward.  The right, with a more restricted attack frontage used a methodical approach, relying mostly on firepower.

A view looking down the ridge towards the sunken road.
The French masses are a daunting sight for Picton's division.
d'Erlon's 2nd division penetrates to the back  table.
Kellerman's cavalry and more of I Corps move up in support.
The French light cavalry does great work.
Here we end the narrative for now.  By 1:30PM a Dutch-Belgian division had been broken and two British divisions were testing their determination to continue the fray.  No sign of the Prussians yet.  When will they arrive?  Will they arrive?


  1. Great looking game and nice write up, thanks!

  2. Well done with this great looking game!

  3. Looks huge, interesting, and beautiful...excellent!