Another Boer War Battle

Played at Tom's place in February 2022 and using Tom's own Principles of War rules, I am again indebted to him for the following: -

Today’s game was set in South Africa with the British assaulting a dug in Boer army. The Boers formed up the bulk of their blinds around the hill on their left with outliers deployed on their far right and on the hill in the centre of the table.

On the British side Lyttleton’s brigade formed up on their left and using their light infantry training they advanced rapidly using the an area of long grass to cover their movements. The C-in-C advanced with Hart's Irish Brigade and deployed the artillery to the left of the long grass ready to support the infantry attack. In the centre Woodgate's Brigade advanced to attack the hill in the middle of the table. The mounted brigade advanced off the British left flank to check out the outlying Boer blind hiding behind the long grass.

The Boers stay hidden in their move but open up with their artillery from the rear hill causing casualties to Woodgate's Brigade. Because of the black powder and hidden blinds the British were unable to locate any Boer units, so their units continued their advance. Lyttleton’s Brigade emerge from the area of long grass then form up against the broken ground in front of the Boer positions. Hart's Brigade forms up and begins to move towards the hill to the rear of the Boer positions. Woodgate's Brigade advances and climbs the hill in the centre of the table. The Mounted Brigade send forward the skirmish horse to scout out the Boer blind deployed in the long grass.

Again the bulk of the Boers remain hidden using their artillery to snipe on Woodgate’s Brigade, while their infantry deployed in front of the hill in the rear of their position open fire on Lyttleton’s Brigade as they deploy ready for the attack. The British turn they reveals that the Boer blinds on the central hill and in the long grass on the right were empty of troops. This allowed Woodgate's Brigade to capture the hill in the centre of the table then turn to move on the main Boer positions while the Irish Brigade moves within range of the main Boer positions. The Mounted Brigade moves round to advance on the Boer positions.

Over the next few moves the battle rages with advancing British brigades coming under heavy fire as they advance on the Boer positions. The Irish Brigade being in the open take heavy casualties as they bravely advance, eventually loosing the Connaught Rangers and the 2nd Dublin Fusiliers before the other units are forced to retire. Lyttleton’s Brigade advance slowly on the Boer positions, their light infantry training and the cover provided by the broken ground allowing them to advance without too heavy casualties. The British artillery support the infantry as they develop their attack.

Eventually Lyttleton’s Brigade causes heavy casualties upon the Boers as they advance and cause most of the Boer brigade in front of them to retire, leaving only one unit in reserve. The British then storm the remaining Boer position and attack the emplaced Boer artillery, while another unit forms up and rushes the hill.

On the British right the Boer position is stronger and they have to advance over open ground taking heavy casualties in the process. Eventually the stalemate is broken when the Mounted Brigade commander lead the 1st Royal Dragoons in a charge against a weaker part of the Boer positions. The heroic leader gets unhorsed during the charge and again in the ensuing melee but the charge is successful and after two rounds of mêlée the Dragoons overrun the Boer position and then another as they pursue their defeated opponents. The dragoons were brought up short when the rolled a 20 morale result leaving them on blown horses.

The game ends with the Boers in disorder and the British occupying all the terrain objectives, both sides having suffered almost 50% casualties in the process.