Monday, 27 May 2013

Holding L'ficticious Bridge: Part the First

Continuing with the Campaign of Pointless Emergency a quick reorganisation followed by a redeployment has transformed the attack into a defence. Marshall Grandchapot awaits the inevitable allied counter attack.

Gen. Le Fringe and Gen. Swat d'Gnats have their Divisions on the the right bank. No cavalry screen has yet been ordered forward to ascertain the enemies whereabouts.
 d'Gnats orders column formations for faster movement.
 Marshall of France Grandchapot with his new ADC's Curle, Larrez et Meaux....
 The left bank consisting of Gen. Mortiers...
 ...and Gen. Malaise...
 In charge of the Cavalry Division is Gen. Tingirdelle
 Grandchapot can do nothing but watch the mist rolling in as the Corps shakes itself into position.
 Towards the French left there is the sound of drums in the distance.
 'Skirmishes out! Inform the Marshall! Enemy to the front of our positions!'
"Are we about to have an accident at work, which wasn't our fault, in the next three hours? If so call  mum on..."

 The enemy break out of the mist and advance unchecked towards Gen. Malaise's Division.
 Gen. Tingirdelle inclines for what may be a flank move from enemy cavalry...
'Sir! Message from Marshall Grandchapot "shift your a.."'
 At the appearance of M. Meaux, the ADC. Gen Swat d'Gnats signals his Division to begin crossing the bridge to support the rest of the Corps against the enemies revealed hand.
 Batteries move to the bank for supporting fire and the lights move over first.
 Play opens with the French putting the ball on the pitch.
 Cavalry reposition...
...but the surprise is yet to come...

More next time.

Friday, 17 May 2013

Le Shed de la Gloire


Napoleon said that every soldier carried a Marshall’s baton in his knapsack (this due to a typo on the baton ordering form) they also carried 3 socks and a pair of nose hair clippers as tired clerks, who took notes 24/7, miss-heard  a complaint to Josephine in the Imperial command tent when Bonaparte was getting ready for bed.
That very night a communiqué from Marshal of France Grandchapot  made the Emperor sleep contentedly. It was a message of valour, glory and victory… also a situations vacant ad for le Figaro; “Wanted, ADC’s. Must have own horse and good sense of direction. Bravery optional. Continence essential. Would suit young rich kid used to ducking lead shot. Apply to: le Grand Army, back door, moving target unit, l’ecole militaire, Paris (if locked push CV under door)”
And now the conclusion of… the ‘Battle of L’fictitious River’ during the ‘Campaign of Pointless Emergency of 18 umpteen’


 Forced back under relentless French pressure the 'Lights' of the Royal Regiment of Crash Test Dummies' make the enemy pay (it's a four franc toll...cash).
 Wellington said of Napoleon that he was a 'pounder' and he obviously thought little of the Euro but the tactic of pounding, though costly, is inching (millimetre-ing) the French forward.
 Whole Divisions are fed onto the bridge and its environs...
 Marshall Grandchapot sends ADC's to change the order of Gen. Swat d'Gnats to follow on over the bridge and to lend weight to the artillery fire being brought to bear on the far bank.
 One ADC appears to get extra nostril and falls from his horse. The men keep his fillings...presumably to send home to his mum.
 Gen. Le Fringe's men champ at the bit to be allowed to follow on to the action but, no orders yet.
 The square repels one charge after another.
 Both sides men queue to get at the enemy. Guns thunder in support and the Allies reply.
 The French Cavalry Division is being sacrificed to keep the British Division in place.
 ...and are paying a high price (eight francs for cavalry...no change given)
 Gen. Swat d'Gnats urges his men on to glory and accident compensation.
'Yes, yes, we've had accidents in the last 3 years!'
 Eagerly the Light's flood forward to get their claim forms.
 Artillery, Napoleons Beau fills, are wheeled into place...
 ...using approved lifting techniques...
 The British prepare to harvest French pockets.
'Are we nearly there yet?'
 ADC's sent to change Le Fringe's orders never make it, so, 25% of the French Army can't advance. Let's hope the Allies don't notice.
'Knees bent, back straight!'

 They take casualties from the heavy French artillery support.
'Le Gulp!'


 The Prussian reserves arrive the Count von Gifthorst in the lead.
 Counter battery fire wears down the Anglo-Prussian gunners.
 The British line breaks and the French fan out...
 But the arrival of the Prussian cavalry (under Baron Niti von Gritti) forces them into squares so that they might be defeated in detail...
 In goes the Prussian cavalry...
 ...sabre's swinging and moustaches bristling...
 ...and on the other square the British heavies charge home...under, say, Smithson-Smythe?
 The tired Scots are lost to a man.
 The French guns are wheeled as close to the river as they dare.
 ...to try to assist their infantry squares as they are being battered and ground down.
 Anglo-Prussian artillery survivors batter the French at point blank range...
 At last...the rest of the Prussian's arrive...to be deployed out of range of the French guns.
 Smithson-Smythes lot bounce...
 ...leaving it to the guns...
 Baron niti von Gritti's men bounce too...not really a day for cavalry heroics.
 Finally, the French cavalry make it over (and get mown down again)
...but the next lot exploit the gap. The square falls. The allied guns are silenced. The British have broken and the Prussian's are just in the nick of too late. L'fictitious bridge belongs to France.

Breathless, we drink coffee and set our minds to the next scenario. Will the outcome of the 'Campaign of Pointless Emergency' please or disappoint the Emperor? We shall have to see...

Thanks to all the usual sufferers of these games. Ta mucho to Alan C and Colin L for the use of some of their lovely figures.