Principles of War - a Napoleonic Battle

This game was played during the last week of June 2021 between Tom and Karl. They used Tom's well-known "Principles of War" rules and Tom also provided the materials for the game, the venue and the account that follows. An important sporting event, which will long live in the heart of every English person, brought the game to an abrupt close.

The French are on the attack and focus their three infantry Divisions on their left, aiming to take the Austrian line of supply behind the wood. They use their dummy bases and Light Cavalry divisions to mask the Austrian eft flank.

The Austrians assigned their Grenzers and Militia infantry to protect their line of supply with their Cavalry concentrated on the open left flank with orders to swing round to threaten the central hill and any French advancing on the line of supply. The two Austrian regular infantry divisions are in the centre of the table with orders to advance the division on the right to attack the centre hill while the two form the link with the Militia holding the Line of supply. The C in C controls the reserves formed up behind the two regular divisions.

In the game the French infantry advance rapidly up the left flank heading for the Austrian line of supply. The Austrian Militia’s deployment is disrupted when they discover that the woods are impenetrable and can only be traversed by road.

Seeing the threat the Austrian C in C changes the orders for his division and leads them towards the threatened line of supply, but rolling only two initiative it takes the whole move to write the new orders and his division do not move. The two leading French divisions advance and the first of them clashes with the Austrian 2nd regular division and the lead elements of the Militia division as it debouches from the road through the wood. The second division skirts the wood on the left confronting the two Grenzer units desperately defending their line of supply.

The Austrian Heavy Cavalry divisions advance to the central hill and supported by squares from the Austrian 1st infantry division slowly force the French Light Cavalry division back. Eventually the French cavalry have nowhere to retire and desperately charge the Austrian Heavy Cavalry and after several turns charging and counter charging they are finally forced to flee.

Meanwhile the French infantry attack crushes the Austrian Militia division and moves rapidly towards the Austrian line of supply. The Austrian C in C arrives just in time to form a final defensive line. The game stops for the England match as the Austrians close in on the French rear as the French start to crumble with the Austrian reserve division holding their line of supply.