Sunday, 28 June 2020

1813 Campaign – New Maps

New Map of Germany
I had hoped to be able to fit the new military districts into the existing maps.
But this has not proved possible.   So I have had to make new maps.     

Germany is divided into three campaign areas
These are outlined in white

North Germany – 1st French v Prussian Army
Central Germany – 2nd French v Russian Army
South Germany – 3rd French v Austrian Army

Germany is divided into 9 military regions and 81 military districts.
The 9 regions are outlined in red
Each region has 9 districts
One square is a district, and also a wargames table
New Map of Spain
Spain is divided into two campaign areas
These are outlined in white

North Spain – 4th French army v Spanish Army
South Spain – 5th French army v Anglo-Portuguese Army

Spain is divided into 7 military regions and 63 military districts
Each square on this map is a military district, and also a wargames table
Each military region consists of 9 squares
Old Map of Europe

More Maps to Follow
Germany and Spain are the two most important maps, because that is where the current campaign is fought.  

I will also have to make a new map of Europe.   And before I can do that I will need to make one for France and Italy.    Now that I have worked out the best layout I am hoping that this will not take too long.   

However in the past the biggest problem has been trying to align France with Germany and Spain.  

Wednesday, 24 June 2020

1813 Campaign Supply Rules

Until now the supply rules have been designed to force both armies to take steps to provide and protect their lines of supply.

Each corps starts the campaign with four days supplies, which is also the maximum that they can carry.   To resupply they have to halt, avoid the enemy and be within one day’s march of a depot.   As they advance they have to establish depots so that they do not have to retreat to resupply.

All of this was designed for a series of one off, stand alone, mini campaigns.  At the start both armies had sufficient supplies for four days, plus one days supply in their depot.

The new Regional Military Command system requires a change in this stand alone, mini campaign system.   However I still need a system which will bring a natural end to each mini campaign.

I am testing a new supply system which should bring about this result.

At the start of each campaign phase each army will have sufficient supplies for 10 days.   This translates as 40 days supplies (10 for each of the four corps).   As now, each corps will start the campaign with four days supplies.   The remaining 6 days per corps will be held in their depot.   This depot will be the nearest town to their location at the start of the campaign.

It will no longer be necessary for a corps to detach an infantry brigade to form a garrison.  I have found that these detachments add nothing to the wargame, and just reduce the number of figures available to wargame.

However as they advance, or retreat, they will have to establish depots to resupply. Each corps can establish as many as they want.  To do so they must halt in the town and avoid contact with the enemy for one day.

This means that each campaign will last a maximum of ten moves.   There will be a clear campaign objective, usually to take and hold a specified town.  

I have found with the wargame that having a maximum number of game moves (in this case 12) really applies the pressure to the attacker.   In my games it tends to take four moves to move within artillery range, four moves for artillery fire and the final four moves to move into contact and decide the outcome by musket fire and melee.   If the attacker allows too many moves for artillery fire he will run out of time to reach the enemy and fire and melee.

I am hoping that this principle will also apply to the campaign phase.   

Sunday, 21 June 2020

Campaign Map to Table

Campaign map of North Germany

This is the first attempt to run a campaign using the new maps, and to transfer a battle from the campaign map to the table.

This map is used for planning, and will be the one I use to introduce the new higher level of command to the campaign.

It covers the area of North Germany which will be used by 1st French Army and the Prussian Army.

Each square is a military district, and will also be a wargames table.   Nine squares (3x3) are a military region.

Arnhem region, on the left, is the staging area of the French Army, and contains their main depot at Arnhem

Berlin region, on the right, serves the same purpose for the Prussian army, and their main depot is at Berlin.

The Prussians have entered Hamburg region, in the centre, which will provoke a French reaction.   They have deployed one corps on the border as a covering force, and to give them warning of a French attack.   Their main strength is in the centre.   This is to enable them to react to any attack, but in particular one on Hamburg.

The French plan is to attack Brunswick (bottom left).   They have deployed one corps in each district along the border, to force the Prussians to do the same and to hide their intention.   3rd French, 4th French and 13th Polish corps will all cross the border at the same time.   Napoleon, with the 1st Old Guard corps, will support the Polish corps to take Brunswick.
Campaign map of Hamburg Region

This is the map which will be used for the campaign movement and diary.  It looks very similar to any of the existing campaign maps.  It is the same size and shows very similar terrain.  It also uses the same sized corps symbols.

The Prussian deployment is the same as on the map of North Germany.   3rd, 4th and 13th French corps are shown just off map and will enter at the start of the campaign.   Napoleon and the Old Guard corps are behind 13th corps.
Wargames map of Hamburg Region

This is the map which is used to transfer the terrain from the campaign map to the wargames table.  It is exactly the same as maps I currently use.   Each square is the same as in the Campaign Map of the Hamburg Region, but it shows more clearly what each 2x2 foot scenic square will look like on the table.  In the top right of each square is a number.   This is the number of the scenic square which will be used to make up the wargames table.

So far all looks quite good.  I think the maps will work, but only play testing will determine the truth.

However I now have a further task.   In the current campaign all of this map would be used to fight the campaign phase.   This was because it covered such a smaller area.  However in this campaign I will have to devise a way of restricting the contest to just the Brunswick area.   Or at least determine the outcome of the campaign phase to the capture of the Brunswick area.  

This will be done by limiting the amount of time both armies have to determine the winner.   At present I am working on limited supply for each army, so that they have perhaps 7 days to take and hold the objective, in this case Brunswick.

This first campaign will quickly determine whether all of this works in practice or not.

Wednesday, 17 June 2020

1813 Campaign Maps

Simplified map of Germany showing Military Regions

This is the latest map of Germany, showing the nine regions and 53 districts (top left is open sea).   Each square is a wargames table.

Before this reorganisation each of these squares would have been nine wargames tables.    Each one would have been a stand alone campaign phase.   However when I tried to replicate this again the resulting map was much too large and too complicated.

The result of this change is that each square represents a much larger georgraphical area, as well as a much larger wargames area.

Previous map of Germany showing Military Districts

This is the map used I used during the current campaign.   Each square represented a campaign phase or 9 wargame tables.

In the new campaign each square would represent a 2x2 foot scenic square on the wargames table.   Nine squares (3x3) will represent a wargames table.  Nine squares will also represent a military district.

This map will better explain the major difference between the old and new campaigns. 

I am currently working on how to transfer this new scale and concept from the campaign map to the wargames table.   This is the really difficult part, and has caused me to scrap the previous seven attempts to revise the campaign.

Sunday, 14 June 2020

1813 Campaign Maps

Salzwedel Campaign Map

This is the seventh revision during this current attempt to improve the command and control of the overall 1813 campaign.

On the previous six attempts I had tried to make the new system work on the existing campaign maps.  However this has proved impossible.

So for this attempt I have gone back to basics.   I want to keep the wargame maps, and also the maps I used for campaign phases.   The map above is the campaign map for the Salzwedel campaign, the last one in Northern Germany

This is about the right size to use for the campaign diary blog.   Each square is a 2x2 foot scenic square on the wargames table.   The number of the scenic square in shown top right on each square.   There are nine wargame tables on this map, which gives me sufficient space to manoeuvre the eight corps which will fight the campaign.   Most important it is easy to follow what is happening, even on a small screen.

So reluctantly I have decided to remake all maps above this level.

New Map of German Military Regions

The new map looks similar to the previous one.  But there are important differences.

Each square is a wargames table.  

There are now only nine Military Regions in Germany.   

The top three will be north Germany and feature 1st French and Prussian armies
The middle three will be central Germany with 2nd French and Russian armies
The bottom three will be south Germany with 3rd French and Austrian armies

I have also taken a lot of liberties with the actual location of cities.   On the far left are Berlin, Dresden and Vienna, the three allied main depots.   Here they are shown as being in direct line north to south, in fact this is not so.

The same applies to the three on the left hand side.   Osnabruck, Dusseldorf and Strasbourg are the depots of the 1st, 2nd and 3rd French armies.

The three regions on the left will be the home depots of the French armies.    Those on the right the same for the allied armies.  

The campaign will be fought in the three centre regions.   The capitol of each region is shown in the centre of the map.  Again a liberty with the true location of these cities.   But this will make running the campaign much easier.

This map will not be used for the campaign diary blog.  It is only for planning purposes and to help me plan the rest of the maps.

Each of these regions are the same size as the Salzwedel map above.   But they cover a much larger area.   Each of these regions will be the scene of an ongoing series of campaign phases. 

So not only will the maps have to be redone, but the concept of stand-alone mini campaign phases will also have to be updated.

Big job, but at last I feel I am starting to make progress.