"Napoleon has humbugged me, by God; he has gained twenty-four hours march on me."
The Duke of Wellington
My first game of 2013 and once again I clashed with my old foe General Bray. We picked the Commands and Colors Napoleonic system and the battle of Quatre Bras. It was to be an entertaining and nail biting days indulgence.
The cross roads of Quatre-Bras in central Belgium, near Brussels was of strategic importance because the side which controlled it could move south-eastward along the Nivelles-Namur road towards the French and Prussian armies at the Battle of Ligny. If Wellington's Anglo-allied army could combine with the Prussians, the combined force would be larger than Napoleon's. Napoleon's strategy had been to cross the border into the Netherlands without alerting the Coalition and drive a wedge between their forces and subsequently to defeat the Prussians before turning on the Anglo-allied army.
Using 1\72 plastic miniatures and Kallistra Hexon gaming tiles we recreated this famous Napoleonic battle. In the first game I took command of the English and Dutch troops. With a powerful set of initial cards I ground down my increasingly frustrated opponent who capitulated after three hours. With a shake of his fist and a few choice words he swore revenge.
So swapping sides we once again tore into each other. Initial pressure by my French line and light troops on the left flank force back the Dutch artillery and infantry from the trees. In the centre General Bray under bombardment fell back from the hills opposite my artillery. Sensing that initiative was slipping away he launch an all out attack on my right and centre. A fail massed cavalry assault on my part and all was to play for. The battle ebbed and flowed with victory teasing us both. Either side could have claimed the wining banner. Finally I managed to deliver the death blow to a weakened light cavalry unit with my Cuirassier A very tense finish to a great days fun.
A short post battle analysis (what ifs and if only) then Mr Bray and I shook hands and called it a day.