FoGR Early Renaissance in Roll Call 2013
Early Danish vs Austrian
Game 4, and Dave Allen's Austrians were facing the Danes across the table. The danish army had also played the same opponent in the last game of Warfare 2012, with a rather unfortunate result coming out of what was on paper a very even matchup, so fingers were crossed all over Denmark that luck would favour the Bacon-eaters instead of the schitzel-cookers tonight
The lists for the Early Danish and Austrian from this game, as well as all the other lists from the games at Roll Call can be seen here in the FoGR Wiki.
Knowing that the Austrians had a large, foot-heavy army with many slow and unmaneuverable Kiels, the Danes decided to actually try some "tactics" and concentrated their whole force in a tight deployment, allowing them to hopefully-wrong-foot the Austrians and apply concentration of force and other textbook military strategies in an unusually coherent attempt to win the game through planning and forethought
The left flank was where the force was to be concentrated, and the Danish infantry steamed forwards, as their Gendarmes raced even more quickly down the far flank. The Austrian skirmish screen was looking woefully inadequate against what was almost all of the Danish army, and in fact appeared in danger of being surrounded and cut off...
here the danish plan can slearly be seen, with almost all of the Danish horse turning in on the Austrians, and the Danish infantry steaming gracefully towards the Austrian right. The small woodland in the middle of the table is going to be the pivot for the Danish forces to crush 1/3 of the Austrian army, as the rest flounders haplessley as it tries to pursue dancing skirmishers and horse acting as a distraction
The rare sight of almost all of an army in one frame
The Austrian Light Horse are trapped, pinned by the onrushing Danis Gendarmes they have to deploy Dave's clever Steel Measuring Tape with Laser Beam and Spirit Level in order to make sure that they can do a maneuver which remains in front of the pinning Gendarmes.
The Danish army is closing in on the still rather-stunned Austrians, who were not expecting such tactical quality from their opponents (based on previous experience). However as the Danes close in the Austrians are proving surprisingly accurate and effective shooters, with 4 LH managing to DISR 6 Reiters, and the 4 Austrian Grenzer foot hiding in the wood DISR'ing both units of Danish LF coming to winkle them out. Still, weight of number is counting ...and the Austrian skirmish screen is now down to a 3-base LH unit - once they are blown away the Austrian artillery park will be at the mercy of the Danish Reiters, and the flanks of the 2 Austrian Kiels will be totally exposed as well
The battle for the woodland is taking on American Civil war proportions, as the 4 Austrians are somehow starting to gain the upper hand against 12 Danes...
The first Danish unit breaks! But the fight is still 8 bases against 4, and the not-really-Musketeers are joining the not-really-C15-handgunners in the fray
A couple more rounds of firing and the Austrians are now jubilantly, and somewhat unfeasibly victorious... Part 1 of the Danish plan has stuttered and died, but at least the overall strategic initiative still lies with the Bacon experts as the rest of the Austrian army is waddling slowly around the wood
Three Austrian light horse are continuing to frustrate and bemuse the Danish Reiters, who despite having full armour, a General and rear support have by now dropped to Fragged whilst being unable to inflict even a cohesion test on the handful of skirmishing horsemen facing them.
The Reiters break, bursting through and DISR'ing the Danish Kiel - who have already been DISR'ed by the rout of the Reiters. The Austrian LH, realising their luck is clearly in, charge home against the Fragmented 200-base pike unit. The game has now gone beyond all reasonable probability and is deep into the bizzarre ..
The Danish army now has had its guts ripped from it's shiny new and very clever plan, and one lone General is desparately trying to rescue the situation as all around him units flee in rout and abject failure
All three units of light foot are lost, and with nothing to protect them the 4 Austrian Grenzers capture the Danish artillery park. The Danes now only have damage limitation on their minds, as the half-decent elements of their army stream across to the left of the table through the routing detritus of a calamitous and improbably disaster
Having dragged themselves back up to some semblance of order the danish infantry are now engaged against a proper target - but the chaos of having to respond to the devastating assault of 3 LH has left a massive log-jam of Danish Kiels, and half of their forces are unable to engage as the Austrians take heart and move against danish horsemen on the far edge of the table
The Danish General is frantically rescuing units wherever he can, and even Gendarmes are being pressed into recapturing gunnes as the Danish army attempts to stave off utter defeat at least for a little while longer as then the wait after the inevitable end of the game and when I'd promised to hang around to collect the cloths to take to Britcon will not be quite so long and painful.
Something starts to go right, as one Austrian Kiel drops to Fragmented under a renewed and re-invigorated Danish assault
But by now the Austrians are using the woodland as their own pivot, and the Danes are forced to form a defensive bastion in the bottom left hand corner of the table, coming under assault from all sides by a wave of Kield-om
It's a break! Too little, too late, but they all count...
There went the Danish baggage - eaten in one turn
With overwhelming numbers, Danish guns and a good slice of luck, the Austrians deliver the coup de grace...
The Result is a humbling defeat for the Danes
Post Match Summary from the Early Danish Commander
I think I really ended up jumping out of the frying pan and into the fire with that one, and I would have needed a lot more than an accompanying plate of eggs, beans, black pudding, sausages, hash browns and a grilled tomato on my side if I was to get anything out of a battle in which the dice gods were on the side of the vegetarians to quite such a degree as that debacle
That really made the Danish experience in WW2 look competent by comparison (Hitler's Blitzkrieg Enemies, 1940: Denmark, Norway, Netherlands & Belgium (Men-at-arms)) and I still think that in retrospect I would have changed naught
Despite my concentration, and tactical nouse I did end up fried and crispy, which I suppose is only to be expected - taking less photos may be a solution to lack of tactical forethought, but it clearly does not extracate oneself from the vagaries of the dice
Let's hope that I have now used the bad luck of a thousand competitions, and from hereon in the career of the Danish military will be unblemished. Now, does anyone know anything about this young Swedish chap called Gustavus....?
Hannibal's Post Match Analysis
Blind høne kan også finde korn, or as you might say Blind hens can find grain too, but even sometimes having a plan is little better than stumbling around in the dark - and here you fell into the trap of thinking that having 80% of a decent plan would absolve you from the need to execute in detail what you planned in broad brush strokes
Lets start with 12 light foot against 4. Now, that wasn't entirely correct was it - despite the slowness of the Kiels, you did actually attack with 8 LF, before the next 4 were fully in place - or there to relieve any stumblers. And the enemy were Superior, and you also did not allocate a General to what was possibly one of the pivotal points in the whole battlefield. Piecemeal attacks, lack of concentration of adequate force commensurate with the importance of the task? Starting to ring any bells over there in Copehnagen eh..?
And the LH - why did you even bother - in retrospect they were already fatally crippled as a force once one base was gone, and you would have just as well let them escape rather than tying your whole army in knots in order to secure two measly VPs against an enemy for whom the Kiels and arguably the baggage were a lot more important. If the LH had been left to run, the route to the artillery park, and hence the baggage and the rear of the whole enemy line was open to you, and 3 LH would not have dared to turn and oppose you either.
I suppose at least having a plan is a step forward. But now we have surmounted that hurdle, you appear doomed yet again to sacrifice yourself on the altar of poor execution - which I suppose that you have only avoided before due to having such flawed plans that mere errors of execution appeared inconsequential by comparison.
Be gone Prince of Denmark - Shakespeare's Hamlet talks much of both true and feigned madness, overwhelming grief, seething rage, and is run through with themes of treachery, revenge, incest, and moral corruption - but you could add many more failings to that canon, given half a chance. Begone thouvillainous iron-witted gull-catcher...
That's the end - so why not go back to the Match Reports Index and read some more reports?
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