Friday, 1 May 2020

Bloody Big Nachods

Never heard of it.  I thought Nachod was something I could order with fries in Spoons.  Turns out its a seven weeks war battle.  Its Alf and Bob Prussian vs the A team (well ...the Austrian team Al' the Austrian and the Baron Pumphosen presumably) [Alf and Bob Prussian here - I'll add the completely unbiased view from the other side in good Prussian blue]
In the best Petain traditions we could do with some better Table E pseudonymns. [I think the original Petains have more than enough potential nomme de guerre. We just need names for the new chaps. We were tickled to see the real commander was Baron Ramming. If you were playing Pumphosen then Al must be Ramming -just saying 😀]
A WhatsApp and discord game.


Coloured pencils and ingenuity. 
Well done that man.

The Austrians get on table.  At them!

We  get a sight of the enemy.  Silly helmets and monocles... They are in the gap between the hills. [At this point we only had a 2 base (and Fragile) Jager battalion, two 4 base infantry regiments a reduced battery and a single base cavalry unit. This was to be it for most of the game - not enough silly helmets or monocles!]

At them as quickly and with as much as possible.  Our orders are aggression. We want the Prussians on the back foot. [not exactly back foot but we were surprised by the speed of the attack. Having only played two games before, I had forgotten how far units an move in a turn.]

Our reinforcements.  We are aware that they will get reinforcements too. [If only … most of our army was scheduled to arrive on turns 5 to 7] Our plan is to build a grand battery on the high ground. [A shame it was so far away! Did it fire? We didn't notice if it did!]

Attack... We swamp the hill with assault columns.

We drive them back from the ridge with a right hook. [Not too concerned at this point. We only ever planned on initially holding four of the objectives. We intentionally advanced beyond one of them (in the wood) which allowed us to fall back on it when pressed.]

The Prussians have built their own grand battery but the Austrians have already planned to neutralise that. [Not exactly a grand battery - it's only one and a half bases. It did allow us to threaten your northern flank and support the Jager in the town though.]

The battle in the woodland swings back and forward.  The Austrians throw them back.  Aggression seems to be working. [Yeah, flank attacks were nasty but being outnumbered there wasn't much we could do about it]

Our Cavalry swing north on a left hook.  His guns suddenly look vulnerable.  Our reinforcements meantime have moved well and are beginning to threaten.

The Prussians screen their guns with their own cavalry, uphill.  However we had already planned for this...[we did consider a charge but refused to be drawn. This way we could still fall back on the objective.]

The Austrian Infantry exploits Thier numbers and positions well.  Thier quality is questionable, but numbers tell. [Ah but - needle guns and artillery, nasty. We threw you back disrupted and I don't believe your flanking unit went in.]

Finally our attacks go in against the town. They are formidable but have three units against them. [Inevitable really but we did throw back one of your units disrupted and with casualties, with support from our artillery on the hill]

To the strains of the Benny Hill theme our Cavalry play chase around the woods with the Prussians.  We threaten the rear of their guns. [We still have three objectives at this point and our cavalry can still screen our guns. Note that we've voluntarily fallen back in the centre - trading space for time.]

And I must report that the time zone difference caught up with me at 1.30am.  I was forced to retire and leave my senior officer in the lurch. [Discord crashed soon after you left and we drew the game to a close. Turn 5 I believe]

The final positions as Prussian reinforcements finally begin to arrive. [Yes finally. Two regiments have just arrived with another three scheduled over the next two moves - pity we had to end there!]

 History combined with our Austrian Aggression dealt the Prussian a difficult hand. [Still everything to play for at this point, it could have gone either way. Three objectives each at this point but the Prussian army was finally beginning to arrive. Our plan was to shore up our centre / southern flank with a brigade but attack your northern flank with the rest. If we could recapture the town that would have given us 4 out of 6 objectives. But we'll never know....]  An enjoyable game.  [Yes great game and we're starting to get the hang of this distancing thing.] Well done and many thanks to Herr McG. [And a big thank you from the Prussian team as well].

Friday, 24 April 2020

Table E up the Khasi

Sir Sydney ' s briefing
Settle down Gentlemen.  You may smoke if you wish, I'm on raw Turkish shag.  Phwoar Phwoar!

The Khasi of Khalabar has been rabble rousing.   We are here to burn down his Hilltop city of Jhaksi, over there on our right flank. This is a punitive expedition.  You will advance and capture the city.
The Khasi has several companies of semi regular foot armed with Obsolete rifles. He also has a heavy gun shaped like a tiger by all accounts. ..
The walled Tope to our front is an orchard.  It's probably swarming with his fellows. 

To our left is the Chalkat Pass.  The Chalcast outpost is held by us, by Lt. Charles Widdle and and a detachment. We have had no word of them for the last few days.  On the mountain above us is a Sangar, hard cover, otherwise the slopes are clear

This is Burpa tribal territory.  Bungdit din,  the Burpa chief has joined the Khasi.  The Burpa are Pathanis, they all have field craft, but again poor obsolete rifles. None of these chaps are fierce, but they can all swarm over terrain. 
We can expect Irregular infantry, tribal infantry and tribal cavalry, and a lot of them.

We have solid British Regulars, excellent Guides Light Infantry trained in swift movement and field craft,  superb cavalry and superlative gunners, well up to this task . ..

I shall remain here in my tent having Tiffin whilst you gentlemen sort this out.
Strawberry mousse? Carry on... Phwoar Phwoar...




The Khasi speaks!
Oh these Britishers etc etc. .. Oh no, stop messin' about...

So they look to have a core of solid regular infantry.  The Guides infantry concern me, traitors all.  They are light Infantry with field craft and they move swiftly ignoring terrain.

The British may bring guns which will be troublesome.  Thier mountain batteries can get through terrain quickly but are poor.  The usual 9pdrs can cause damage even to a Sangar. 
Their cavalry are deadly in the open.

Bungdit din can focus his tribes to the Chalcast pass on out far right.  The Khasi's guards confront and defend Jhaksi on its mountain to our left lead by our Mad Fakir whose very presence will inspire our men.
I can give you no other advice.  I must go for Tiffin with the wives. 



Extras (but I forgot to do his bit...) 1.  Water Camel with Bhisti boy
2.  Extra Ammo Camel
3.  Dr Watson
4.  Extra shot mules
5.  Adjutant
6.  Dhooli

Approaching the Fort
1.  The Garrison are all dead, stood to arms Beau Geste style
2.  Widdle and his men are on their last legs.  They surrender
3.  Widdle has barricaded the gates and will defend with 3 men
4.  Widdle has manned the walls and will defend with 4 men
5.  Widdle stands firm and will defend with 5 men
6.  Widdle has half a company and a wall gun. 



The Tabletop Simulator version of my table.





From both sides...


The Northants deployed right to left as gun, coy B, Coy A, Lights

The fierce mountainous terrain of the Khalabar pass

21:10
21:10

The Natives appear and they seem to be annoyed

The 4th Foot under Major Shorthouse advance


And our bold cavalry commander pushes forward aggressively

Bungdit Din contacts the fort and the roll is 1... Widdle and his men are already dead, Beau Geste style... or perhaps follow that camel!
21:33
21:33
21:35
21:38

Shorthouse among the action, as the Khasi loses pin test after pin test.

21:58

But even in their Sangars the Pathanis suffer losses. Damn those Imperialists...

22:15

The Mountain guns hammer away at the sangars.  Even at -3 they make inroads

22:32

The 4th foot creep forward, losing men but never their stiff upper bristling lips...

And finally a view across the battlefield. The Khasi's army has melted away...

23:38
23:40
23:42

With the Khasi gone the Imperials focus in on the remaining Burpas. Its a turkey shoot.


But what is this a valiant horse (camel) charge.  Shorthouse is thrown back and must roll to save himself - twice!
23:51
Congratulations to the bold Major Shorthouse and his team.  A well executed plan gentlemen.  My apologies to the bandit Chief Bungdit Din since the Khasi rather let him down...  the Khasi's dice rolling skills were as abysmal as ever



A really enjoyable game...