Sunday, 1 November 2009

Refighting Wellington's Battles


Our wargaming has suffered a little since I started the multi player PBEM campaign. Because Jan and I fight the campaign battles as a wargame, we have not done any of our own games for the past month. The campaign games have been very enjoyable, the more so because they were not designed by me. But it does mean that there can be gaps between wargames when the campaign is not providing any battles.

When we ran our own solo campaign we always had a battle waiting to be wargamed. Furthermore I could manipulate the campaign to provide the size of battle I wanted to wargame. Obviously this is not possible with a multi player campaign.

So I have been pondering what we might do to provide interesting non campaign wargames. Neither of us really like "one off games", we prefer to have a reason and something happening as a result of the outcome. Hence our interest in campaigns.

I was reading a blog last night, and it was about refighting Spanish Napleonic wargames as the anniversary comes up. To be honest I dismissed it at the time, as I have never seen a refight of an actual battle which was anything like the "real thing". And as we rely on just 20 scenery boards to produce all of our wargames it is even more difficult to produce a battlefield that looks anything the real one.

Then this morning whilst I was giving the pool its weekly clean I had my "brain wave". We will play "one off" wargames based on Wellington's battles. They will not make any attempt to be a refight of the actual battle, but will bear its name. The scenery will be similar to the real one, but the order of battle will not. In the past I have found that using historical orders of battle for Wellington's battles is very non productive. He tended to fight only on very favourable defensive ground, and only when he outnumbered his opponent. This would produce a very one sided, and not very enjoyable, wargame.

They will also be larger than usual wargames, using my 15mm figures. I tend to use 28mm for the campaign, and we both enjoy the size of game they provide. But it would be nice to have a different order of battle and allowance for cavalry reserves and grand batteries. Not that there will be any of those in the first game, which will be based on Rolica.

I will put a report on the blog and you can see for yourself what you think of the project.

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