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Rank & File Battle of Wethau 1814

This weekend we fought a 15mm Napoleonic battle using Rank & File, partly because we hadn’t had the Napoleonic figures out in an age and partly to test some of the new rules for 2nd Rank & File.

Using 15mm for Rank & File we still kept to all of the same ranges, distances and rules but has two of the 15mm figure bases representing a single R&F base except for artillery where we kept 1:1. As all of the rules use the number of bases to calculate firing, break points, melee and so on it was an easy conversion to make and the game played much the same as it would in 28mm.

The first photos show the battlefield and the units available to both sides, though these turn up at various points during the battle. As umpire I knew when and where they would come on but the players didn’t.

The battle itself starts at midday with the French crossing in two grouping at a river and a ford. The Austrian Avante-Garde division is seriously outnumbered and needs to hold on long enough for their reinforcements to arrive on the field. As more Austrians arrived the battle swung with the French actually pushed back to the stream before their Dragoon division arrived on table.

What followed was a messy cavalry action with both sides throwing in more and more troops until finally the French forced the stream again, the weight of their dragoons along with the supporting infantry and artillery being too much for the Austrian cavalry.

In the meantime some much needed Austrian line infantry arrived along with a Russian cavalry brigade. Unfortunately two regiments of these were Cossacks but surprisingly they managed to pass their Elan tests and actually make a charge! Even so their main contribution was to increase the Austrian army break point.

Both sides continued to fight each other to a bloody standstill until we called it a draw as darkness was falling.

I think I’d be quite happy using 15mm figures for Rank & File again in the future but my plan is still to paint up a brigade or so of French so we can do some more 28mm Napoleonic games next year.