Phil and I decided to play a series of games here in GHQ set in North America and fought out each time over the same basic terrain table, with slight geographical adjustments, starting with the AWI. You'll notice this is labelled number 2 and might be asking whatever happened to number 1. Well, all will become clear next month, so bear with me just for now please. For those interested in our future plans, number 3 will be the War of 1812 in a fortnight's time and number 4 will be the ACW in a month's time if all goes to plan. So, to today's struggle...
The British are attempting to reach Brecher's Landing to sieze much needed supplies before the Continental Army can arrive to reinforce the Militias encamped in and around the settlement. The Americans only have Militias deployed on table in Turn 1, whereas the entire British force enters in the same turn. At the end of Turn 1 the Americans dice for reinforcements, which either enter by road or water via the harbour, needing a 6 on a D x 6. If unsuccessful in that turn, then the score needed diminishes by 1 in each subsequent turn. There are two objective markers in place for the victor to hold, one by the harbour and one in the tented encampment. This means that to win one side must hold both. To the game then...
The American Militias hold the fence line forward of the east - west road linking the harbour to the encampment. Phil has divided his British forces into two main thrusts to sieze the harbourside objective and a smaller assault on the campside one. The C-in-C commands the Guards and Grenadiers in the British centre, able to switch support to either flank as the Continental Army arrives. My Militias have merely to hold on until the regulars arrive to save the day. In Turn 1 Phil's Command dice rolls had to be seen to be believed! Most units, particularly the Hessian brigade on his left, advanced the full three moves. I rolled for reinforcements after some ineffective artillery fire, a 5; close, but a no show for Turn 2.
So, no sign of my Continental Amy yet, the Militias were on their own for at least another turn! Phil's Command dice rolls continued to be unprecedented! The Hessians threatened my right flank, but were short of contact allowing one unit and the supporting artillery to withdraw to the second fence line. On the American left the two militia battalions were also able to fall back, leaving only the one Disordered unit out on its own, time for some reinforcements I hoped! The dice roll and a 4 shows up; close again, but not good enough. Things look a little sticky here now.
From Phil's perspective now you get some sense of the developing power of the British attack. My Militias must fight like men inspired to hold on for relief from the Continental Amy! No time for a rousing speech though the British and their Hessian allies pour fire into my boys. We can take it though, saving throw upon saving throw limits casualties, if not Disorder. In our turn we return fire and down go some of King George's men, never to rise again! Still no sign of the Continental Army, I throw a 2!
There is pressure all along the American front which allows the Hessians to deploy one battalion on the Harbour, thus cutting off one avenue of possible reinforcements arriving! They also take possession of one of the objectives in the same movement! My boys continue to defy the tyrant's hordes, but we sure could use those reinforcements now! Needing a 3 or more I throw a 1!!!
On the American left, Loyalists overrun the artillery defending the camp and seize the second objective which will enable them to win the game unless the Continentals arrive now.
On the American right one Militia unit is charged in its flank by Hessians and despite a tough fight falls back Disordered and Shaken. The second unit is Disordered and Shaken by small arms fire and on the far right the remaining Militia flees in Rout. Needing anything but a 1, well, you can guess can't you? Game over with a thumping victory for Phil as the British. Neither of us can recall a game where the dice throwing results were so wildly different. My only real successes cam in some fire fights and some stubborn fighting in two melees! When it came to bringing on my Continentals, no way! A thumping and no mistake; there will be some harsh words in Congress I fear and old 'Independence or Death' Bykleigh may find himself relieved of his command having lost valuable supplies to the enemy!
We used Black Powder rules for the game, the figures are from my now mostly aged collection of Front Rank, supplemented by a few Foundry and lately Perry figures. The buildings are old Architectural Heritage ones, the harbour is from Ainsty bits and the trees are from The Last Valley.
Phil and I made the rail fences, probably 20 years ago now, and I made the black water swamp a similar time in the primordial past! Back now to painting Redoubt Enterpises' F&IW regular infantry!