Wednesday, 16 November 2016

Franco-Mexican War BBB Test Game

I've been wondering whether Bloody Big Battles (BBB) would work at a much lower level than it was designed for. Normally each base represents from 500 to 1500 men depending on the scale of the battle. My forces for the Franco-Mexican War are organised in companies of 6 bases with each base representing 10 to 15 men.

Juaristas launch an all out assault on  Monriel

I made a few changes to the rules

  • All firing ranges were doubled eg Muzzle Loading Rifle goes from 9" to 18" range
  • Skirmish changes from an attribute to a formation - allowed to certain troop types
  • Drop the 1 Right firing modifier if firers are skirmishers
  • Add a -1 Penalty modifier to Melee if the unit is in skirmish formation
Juaristas advance!

Troops were defined as follows

Foreign LegionMLVeteranAggressive, Can Skirmish
ZouavesMLTrainedAggressive, Can Skirmish
Sudanese InfantryMLTrainedFragile
Imperial ConscriptsMLRawPassive, Fragile, Tactically Inept
Chasseurs d'AfriqueSMVeteranAggressive, Can Skirmish when dismounted
ContrasSMTrainedCan Skirmish when dismounted
Line InfantryMLTrainedCan Skirmish
Militia InfantryMLRawFragile
Local PeasantsSMRawAggressive, Tactically Inept
Irregular Cavalry-TrainedAggressive

Feel free to criticise the ratings

There were 2 French players - Steve & Shaun and 2 Juarista players - mike and myself.

The French players were allowed to each choose 4 units

Steve took
1 Foreign Legion company
1 Sudanese Company
1 Contras Squadron
1 Artillery piece

Shaun took
1 Foreign Legion company
1 Sudanese Company
1 Chasseurs d'Afrique Squadron
1 Artillery piece

The Juaristas were allowed to each choose 6 units

Mike took
2  Line Infantry companies
2 Militia Infantry companies
2 Artillery pieces

and I took 
1  Line Infantry company
2 Militia Infantry companies
1 Local Peasants company
2 Irregular Cavalry Squadron 

As you can see we are all very trusting and not inclined to abuse the system

There were 3 villages that were the objectives-  one in each side's third of the table and one in the centre.
The objectives - Rolguaní on the left, El Carchiná in the centre and Monriel out of picture on the right and already there is clutter on the table <shakes head and tuts>

Immediately both sides sent cavalry to seize El Carchiná
Shaun's French forces occupy Monriel and start to set up a defensive position to face off my Juaristas
Mike's Juaristas bring up their guns
The French view from Monriel. Sudanese in the village, dismounted Chasseurs line the wall and the Legion advance to support them
Same view showing El Carchiná as well
Cavalry action in the streets of El Carchiná
My Militia  infantry get shot up and forced back by the Chasseurs and the Sudanese
Mike's Juaristas form up into a firing line
My cavalry try to sacrifice themselves to allow my infantry to move in. Even getting 2 shifts to the right for firing; cavalry and in column, the Sudanese could not destroy them
Juarista Militia close with the Legion but the Peasants are pushed back by the Chasseurs
The Contras get repulsed in El Carchiná and it all starts to go wrong for the French
Juarista Line Infantryopen up on the French advancing to seize El Carchiná 
The fight for the wall  protecting  Monriel continues. The walls are linear obstacles that give the defender 1 Left shift in firing and melee
Another view of the action around Monriel
The French view of the same action 
In the centre Juaristas having destroyed the Legion company go on to assault the French gun protecting El Carchiná 
Finally some progress near Monriel - the French are about to vaporise.

At the end of the game the village of Rolguaní was firmly in Juarista hands. In the centre El Carchiná was "contested" by a dismounted Contra squadron facing Militia infantry and cavalry. Monriel was still held by the Sudanese so a draw. 

However Mike's Juaristas had, through firepower, destroyed the Legion company and was in the process of doing the same to the Sudanese company so a couple more turns and the Juaristas would have been victorious.

As a throw together game with completely random forces it had it's ups and downs. There were complaints about the ranges being excessive but given the low-level scale  it made sense to increase the frontage-to-range factor. Also, comparing it to the the ranges in the other set of rules that we have used for this period  they are more or less the same and a lot less sanguine.

More of the same next week when we give Vincent Tsao's Puebla scenario a run out

All of the toys are from QRFs Maximilian range apart from the Sudanese which are Peter Pig