Principles of War - a Colonial Battle

Had a Game of Principles of War 19th Century Colonial with Wayne today.

Hicks Pasha boldly advanced onto the table in three columns. The first column on the left with five battalions of infantry and three batteries of artillery advanced with the baggage train, took the hill and started to prepare their defence. The centre column advanced until they ran into an area of soft sand. On the right the Egyptian Cavalry Brigade with two regiments of regular cavalry supporting three bands of Circassian irregular cavalry advanced towards the hill in the centre of the table.

The Dervish on the Egyptian right storm forward threatening the Egyptian cavalry brigade who decide that discretion is the better part of valour and pull back. They find themselves trapped by the impassable mimosa scrub and one unit of Circassian cavalry is lost as they beat a hasty retreat back towards the main body. A unit of Dervish skirmish cavalry pushes forward to distract the Egyptian infantry forming up behind the soft sand covering their friends as the native masses form up for the attack. The Dervish attack on the right is delayed due to a lack of initiative, but finally manage to form up in the mimosa scrub ready for the attack.

The Dervish ambush the last unit of regular cavalry as it makes its way through the narrow gap behind the mimosa scrub and wipes it out. The Dervish attack on the Egyptians in the centre survives the storm of fire and hits home leading to a lengthy melee as the brave Egyptians hold the Dervish off in a hand to hand combat. The leader of the Egyptian cavalry leads a charge into the flank of the Dervish and routs one of the native foot. But they themselves are then hit in the flank before they reform. The Dervish finally break through the first two Egyptian infantry battalions but their pursuit is halted by the second supporting line.

The Dervish on the Egyptian left finally form up for the attack, after several charges the Dervish finally chase off the Egyptian artillery and their skirmishing cavalry try to move around the flank. The Dervish infantry throw their spears causing one Egyptian infantry unit to retire shaken, but the remaining infantry manage to shoot off the Dervish attack that followed.

When the game ended the general consensus was that in the end the Egyptians had overstretched themselves, much as their historical counterparts.