Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Duel on the Danube - Part II

Finally resuming play with all seven players.  As a recap, we have a Prussian corps, still organized along 1806 lines, an 1809 Austrian corps and a mass of Prussian and Austrian cavalry defending distant Vienna.  Another Austrian corps is coming up in support.  Facing them are two French and one Polish corps.  Due to a "misunderstanding" of the scenario, all three are on table from the start instead of having one coming on like the Austrians.

The Austrian right with the Danube somewhere in the distance.

The right-center where the Poles have been held up but the
French are about to ravage the Austrian line.

Left-center where the Prussians have mostly taken Breslau.

Prussian left where lots of troops are stacked up, waiting.
 The veteran French division facing the Prussians on the left had taken a beating and had to roll a tough ME Determination test.  As it happened they failed and with the Prussian cavalry preventing them from retreating took an extra four fatigue points AND were disordered for the coming hour.  In Empire this is a huge impact in close actions and musketry is halved.  Though also fatigued from hours of combat, the Prussians became even more anxious to get to grips.  Jena will be avenged! 
The "Red Hussars" have routed five disorganized French and one
Rheinbund battalion.  The "Deaths Head" hussars were also winners.

Yellow markers indicate disorder.  The Prussians consolidate
in the foreground and press on to the left.

In the center the French have eliminated or pushed back the
Austrian line, though that allowed some consolidation.
Hitting the fatigued and weakened Austrians the French spearhead of the "Terrible 57th" and 10th Legere skillfully opened a flank and then rolled it up.  (Well done, Andrew.)  While troubling, the Austrians thankfully had a second line ready to meet them and try to push back. 

About this time the Archduke Charles, busy leading an attack, wondered aloud where the other Austrian corps was.  "Awaiting orders, Sire" came the reply.  In typical Archduke fashion no orders had been issued to Count Bellegarde who still hung off table.  Next hour for sure.
The French cavalry reserve begins to come on but no other progress
is made on the French left, Austrian right.

The Prussians, despite mounting losses and fatigue continue to
press the disordered or flanked French.
Precious little remained of the French division that suffered the bad ME Determination result.  The lower grade Rheinbund division would need to test ME Morale should they rout.  Only the exceptionally hot dice (both sessions) of Bob's French here kept them in the game. 
Not wishing to report to Napoleon, the unfortunate divisional
commander takes matter into his own hands.
And so we ended.  In the first session we had played close to one real hour equal one game hour.  However in this session the vast number of units engaged across the entire front slowed play drastically.  Needless to say though, everyone's blood lust was satisfied.

As usual the "well I'd do this" and "you're gonna get munched" talk immediately began as it will among good friends.  My evaluation as the Prussian player is this:  The Austrian cavalry on the right had taken out a good many Polish units, about a 3:1 ratio, and while fatigued was still unbroken.  This meant the known arrival of Bellegarde would have time to deploy, and with no infantry support besides the fatigued and weakened conscript Poles the French cavalry reserve would make little impression.  Assuming no statistically freakish ME Determination roll by the center Austrians they would hold with the new corps and the redeployed Prussian division about to close.  The Prussians, with two small infantry divisions and three brigades of cavalry all fresh, were going to hit the flank of Oudinot's corps, probably in the next hour. 

So in short (too late) I feel this is a Austro-Prussian tactical victory where Napoleon will need to pull back, wait for the la Garde and renew the offensive later.  Kind of an Aspern-Essling result.  And since this is my blog, that's the truth!  <grin>

1 comment:

  1. Great AAR Michael. Love the narrative and spirit of the game play you portrayed.