Copyright © 2017, Paul Scrivens-Smith

Copyright © 2017, Paul Scrivens-Smith

All rights reserved. This work may not be reproduced, in whole or in part, without the prior written permission of the creator.

Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Polly Courthouse - an AWI pick-up game


Yesterday evening at the wargames club Mick, Martin, Ian and myself had an American Revolution game using Black Powder rules.

Loyalist Militia
The last time I used my collection of 6mm AWI figures was back in March 2013 which was the only time they had been used. This game was long overdue.

A few weeks ago I was lucky enough to play Steve at a game he hosted. He is writing the Black Powder AWI source book for Warlord Games so I adopted some of the things we played at his in this game.

This was very much a throw it on the table and see what happens game. Martin and I played the British and we used:

  • Commander in Chief SR:8, Battery of foot artillery
  • Brigade Commander SR8. Unit of Grenadiers, unit of Light Infantry, unit of Skirmishers
  • Brigade Commander SR8. Three units of Line Infantry, unit of Skirmishers
  • Brigade Commander SR8, Three units of Line Infantry, unit of Skirmishers
  • Brigade Commander SR8, Three units of Militia, Infantry, two units of Skirmishers

British lines advance across open ground

Mick and Ian took the Americans and used

  • Commander in Chief SR:8, Two batteries of foot artillery
  • Brigade Commander SR8, Four units of Continental Infantry, one unit of Continental Skirmishers
  • Brigade Commander SR8, Four units of Continental Infantry, one unit of Continental Skirmishers
  • Brigade Commander SR8, Four units of Continental Infantry, one unit of Continental Skirmishers
  • Brigade Commander SR8, Four units of Militia, two units of Riflemen

Here are the stats we used:

Unit
Type
Armament
HtH
Shooting
Morale
Stamina
Special
British Line & Light Infantry
Infantry
Smoothbore Muskets
6
3
3+
3
First Fire
Reliable
Elite 3+
Tough Fighters
British Grenadiers
Infantry
Smoothbore Muskets
7
3
3+
3
First Fire
Reliable
Elite 3+
Tough Fighters
British Skirmishers
Small Infantry
Smoothbore Muskets
4
2
3+
2
Reliable
Elite 3+
Tough Fighters
Continental Infantry
Infantry
Smoothbore Muskets
6
3
4+
3
First Fire
Continental Skirmishers
Small Infantry
Smoothbore Muskets
4
2
4+
2

Militia
Infantry
Smoothbore Muskets
5
2
5+
3
Unreliable
Wavering
Riflemen
Small Infantry
Rifled Muskets
4
2
4+
2
Sharpshooters
Artillery
Artillery
Smoothbore Artillery
1
3-2-1
4+
2

As we were playing in 6mm we used half distances.

The table was set up as per the aerial photograph, and we randomised where each brigade would arrive:
The early stages

  1. Does not arrive this turn
  2. Left flank D6x3" from corner
  3. Left base edge: D6x6" from corner
  4. Right base edge: D6x6" from corner
  5. Right flank: D6x3" from corner
  6. Brigadiers choice 

The British took first turn, the Light and Grenadier brigade would appear on the left flank but failed their order test so did not appear. Both the infantry brigades rolled a 6 so came up the middle, one brigade in column up the road and the other into the woodland. Finally the militia appeared behind the woods and skulked around waiting to see where they would be needed - or hopefully not.

The rebels countered and rolled well for their arrival points with two brigades of Continentals in the centre to counter the British and one on the right to counter the flank companies. Rolling a 6 for their militia they were deployed against ours.

Fire-fight around the farmstead
The British column pushed up the road towards the farmhouse and their skirmishers were soon ensconced there, however the front battalion was caught in line and shot up pretty badly by the advancing rebels. The fight around that farmhouse soon developed and became a pivotal point of the battle.

On the British left the flank companies were caught advancing up the road by a sweeping advance of the Continental brigade, however after the initial shock of the fire, the Grenadiers and Lights soon formed line behind the fences and were engaged in a brisk fire-fight with the Continentals.

Grenadiers near the burial grounds
On my right, my militia refused anything but the most sluggish advance, however this was not a big problem as the Rebel militia were similarly shy.

As the battle developed the flank companies continued their fire-fight against the Continentals ranged against them, despite being outnumbered 2:1 they were making good use of their superior morale and the advantage of cover and the Rebels looked rather shaky.

In the centre the volleys rippled  back and forth, the Continentals launched a charge but were beaten back. Another Continental unit launched a charge at one of the British lines and started probably the longest combat I have ever encountered in a game of Black Powder, for about ten player turns this combat raged back and forth with no side gaining a clear victory and ending in a draw in many of the phases. At the end of the game this combat was still taking place.

Grenadiers and Lights get the advantage

However, the superior quality of the British was starting to tell, the Grenadiers launched a charge and despite being disordered by the reaction fire swept away their adversaries and breaking that Brigade. The British in the centre broke their opposing brigade and the Rebels were broken. Just as the two Militia forces had started to trade shots.

A great game and I really must try to not have 15 month breaks between my 6mm AWI games.

All the British are Adler Miniatures painted and based by myself. All the Rebels are Baccus painted and based by Mick.

Longest combat - EVER!

British Artillery