Crimean War POW Battle No.4

A game utilising 25mm figures and played at Tom's place in mid April 2023.

The Russians deploy the Cossack Brigade on their right flank with orders to engage towards the hill on the British right flank. The Russian 3rd Infantry Brigade (3btns) has orders to move forward and occupy the wood in front of the hill and threaten the hill and keep the British occupied. To their right is a dummy blind then the 1st Infantry Brigade (8btns) with orders to move to the central hill and to stand behind the crest. The Dragoon Brigade and horse artillery is deployed on the Russian line of supply with orders to advance to the British LoS. The C-in-C, Heavy Artillery (3bty), Rifles (2btns) & 2nd Infantry Brigade (6btns) deploy behind the hill on the right flank with orders to move to attack the rear of the central hill. The Russians put 45 points on the central objective and 30 points on the hill on their left flank.

The British deploy two dummy blinds on their left flank beyond the road. The British cavalry were deployed on the British line of supply with orders to advance along the road to Russian line of supply. The British 2nd Division is deployed on the Cavalry Brigades' right with orders to advance to the hill. Next comes the Guards Brigade  with orders to take the central hill. To their right is the British 1st Brigade ordered to advance to the centre of the table to the right of the hill. On the British far right the British 4th Infantry Brigade are deployed with orders to advance beyond the hill to the centre of the table to the right of the wood. The British only allocate 30 points to the hill on their right.

The British get the first move and move forward, deploying the 4th Brigade in front to their hill on the right. The 1st Brigade's advance is delayed by a low initiative, while the Guards and 2nd Division move towards the central hill. The cavalry move forward along the road. In the Russian first turn they manage to spot all the British  except for the cavalry and the one dummy base on the right. Due to the low initiative available the Russians declare all their units to maximise their movement. The Cossacks move into charge range of the British 4th Infantry Division which ends up in a standoff for the rest of the game as the infantry take long range shots at the Cossacks.

The Russian 3rd Infantry Brigade advances to the wood forcing the British C-in-C to change orders and deploy a battery of artillery and battalion of rifles from the 1st Infantry Division to protect the hill. In the centre the Russian 1st Infantry Brigade move to the central hill on turn one and form two lines of attack columns behind the crest. The Guards Brigade deploys in front of the hill and move up to the crest to threaten the Russian infantry. Seeing the threat to their left, the British C-in-C orders the 1st Brigade commander to redeploy facing their left to defend against the Russian flanking movement.

The Russian Heavy Artillery deploys on the right and bring the British cavalry under fire, shaking one of the regiments who were immediately charged by a regiment of Cossacks who, over the next three moves, force the British regiment to retire off the table. The second regiment of British cavalry charge the Russian dragoons who hold and the third regiment of dragoons hit the British in the flank and force them to retire shaken through the British 1st Infantry Brigade with the Russian cavalry in hot pursuit.  The ensuing melee went on for over four turns with the Russian dragoons refusing to break in spite of the British infantry reinforcing with all the battalions in the brigade. The British brigade finally breaks when Russians from the 2nd Brigade join in the melee.

On the hill in the centre the Russian infantry charge the British Guards' front and flank. The combat lasts for over four moves as one of the Guards battalions refuses to break (rolling a 1 or 2 for every morale result) But in the end the Russians have 6 out of 8 Battalions in the ongoing melee and finally push the Guards off the hill. As the melee continues the C-in-C orders the remains of the British 1st Infantry Brigade and artillery to move round the hill and bring the Russians under fire from the rear.

At the end of the game the British held their objective but had lost their line of supply and had 75% of their forces remaining. The Russians Held both objectives gaining 75 points and had 90% of their forces remaining giving the Russians 165 points. So a resounding victory for the Russians.