Wednesday, 5 October 2011

The Battle of Peine

Hanover Campaign Tactical Map
This looks like being a very interesting wargame.
This is the latest battle in our 1813 PBEM campaign. The Prussian objective is to take Hanover, and Peine is the last opportunity for the French to stop them. Peine is occupied by a Polish corps under the command of Poniatowski
XIII corps fought, and lost, a battle just four days earlier at Helmstedt. They retreated to Peine, pursued by the Prussians. A French counter attack on Helmstedt forced Blucher to recall the pursuit. The Prussians won the second battle at Helmstedt. They then resumed their march on Peine.
As they neared Peine their advance guard was driven back by a Polish cavalry brigade, who then discovered that they were facing two, and possibly three, French corps. The nearest French reinforcements were one days march away, and had suffered casualties at the second battle of Helmstedt.
In the umpire report for move 37, when the cavalry melee was fought, Poniatowski was advised what he was up against. He also received orders from Davout to hold Peine if at all possible, but to retreat north to join the main army if unable to do so.
Janson, who is playing Poniatowski, was asked what he wanted to do. If he retreated north the Prussians would take Peine, and with it an open road to Hanover. They would have won the campaign. He immediately confirmed that he would stand and fight.
XIII corps have recovered from their battle casualties and are now full strength. The leading Prussian corps has light battle casualties, and the second corps heavy casualties. In fact there is one and a half corps against one. The third Prussian corps, which also has light battle casualties, will arrive at the same time as the first French corps, which has heavy battle casualties. A third French corps will arrive just as night is falling.
Not a game I would have set up as a “one off”. Nor one that I would have fought as part of my previous solo campaign. But one that looks more interesting and challenging the more I look at it.
The first part of the battle report has been published on the 1813 campaign diary blog
Jan will play the French, I will command the Prussians.
This is a game that I am really looking forward to playing – win or lose.

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