21 June 2015

The Battle of Emil's Farm, A Maurice AAR

Ziggy and I had not played a game of anything since mid May, primarily because other things kept coming up for one or the other of us. He'd been wanting to try out Firestorm Armada but since his stuff hasn't made it in yet, I got to select another game and chose Maurice. We had not played it in a while and I've gotten many more units painted up since our last outing not to mention that I picked up the full rules and card deck.

There was a LOT of rust for both of us - we had both completely forgotten how to deploy and manage forces so the battle was a comical whirling mess managed by two incompetent generals. Apparently the generals got their ranks as a function of their births rather than deeds. The two sides aren't strictly "Ottomans" and "Austrians" - they are imagi-nations based on the East versus West wars during the Age of Reason. I was inspired to put these two armies together by the movie "The Adventures of Baron Von Munchhausen."

My forces, the army of Muktar the Handsome. I was defending - the gold coin on the hill represents the objective. Anyone who has played Maurice can see that I botched the shit out of my deployment, particularly the cavalry, by having them separated so widely.

 My right flank

The center, including the Grand Battery - tooled up with National Advantages

And the tragically deployed left wing. Both cavalry units on this side are Elites

Emil's farm, in Bulgaria.

A battalion of the King's musketeers marches up the road to the farm

The Turk's forces amble forward aimlessly.

A previously unspotted area of soft ground is made known in front of the King's cavalry.

The Grand Battery sends a volley towards the European infantry.

Al'Adin's troop heads up the road to threaten the farm.

A light rain started which in essence killed off our artillery. Bah! My basket of eggs is being dropped! The Minister of Meteorology will hear about this!

My troops on the right continued forward through the rain-slicked tall grass and charged into the green-clad soldiers now occupying the farm. The fighting was quick and brutal.

We each lost a battalion in short order.

As we tried to get our troops rallied, the weather cleared (!) Another regiment of Very Reasonable Infantry crossed the center of the battlefield to flank and outnumber my troops on the right. The battalion with the two green disruption markers were Guards and given a couple of bombardments from the Grand Battery while they marched.

Before long, Prince Albert realized the shadows were growing long and time was growing short. His army needed to make a move against the hilltop objective. My best Sipahis atop the hill spurred their mounts and smashed into the European cavalry below.

The initial charge was solid but there was a lot more Very Reasonable Cavalry behind the forward detachment who in turn smashed into more of my horsemen.

The Sipahis see off their opponents in a memorable clash of cavalry!

But moments later the Sultan loses a unit of cavalry. Tragedy!

But things aren't so bad, the Grand Battery doesn't get opportunities like this very often! They unload on a troop of Very Reasonable Cavalry and eliminate it.

Prince Albert sends his horsemen once more into the fight. Two of the cannons are destroyed but the Sipahis by the hill hold their ground brilliantly!

The sun set and the forces of Prince Albert pulled back. Muktar's forces had managed to retain control of the battlefield. It was a tightly contested affair with ups and downs all around, but this day fortune was with the Turk.

Maurice is really a good game. It is so different from the other games we play and is a great change of pace. We both had questionable deployments, mine moreso, but that was due to lack of table-time. Units must be rather close together to be able to commanded together and my cavalry was spread out all over the place. Pushing the farm and forcing an engagement far from the objective worked very well, even though my troops took a beating. It burned a lot of time and distracted Ziggy from his objective. In the end, it saved the game for me. The risk was that if he'd manage to wipe out my forces on that flank, he could have broken my army and gotten a victory. I did what was necessary to mitigate that.

I look forward to putting Maurice on the table again, it's a good one for sure!

Happy Father's Day to all of you dads out there - be great to your kids.

1 comment:

  1. Muktar the Handsome is a great name, I shall steal that. I've played Maurice with an Ottoman army and it can be a challenge going up against a regular 18th century army. I enjoy Maurice as well and need to revisit it.
    Great AAR.