Friday, 12 August 2016

Battle of Castiglione 1796 - The Tide Turns

Fiorella's Division turned up the very next turn, and along with good progress along all but the furthest N of the front the French very much have the upper hand now. Here's the report on Turns 6 and 7 (taking us to 9.40 am).

Kisfalud and Pijon come to blows on the ridge

Left Flank: Having held back for a few turns Kisfalud could see that if he didn't push forward he was going to get smashed by the French, so he went over onto the offensive and took some nasty bites out of Pijon's Bde. Just S of Pijon La Vallette makes good progress pushing forward against Mittrowsky, almost breaking the Austrian Brigade.

La Vallete against Mittrowsky
Centre: Guillame, Beyrand and Robert all make good progress, and the concerted work of La Vallete and Guillame against Bajahaza has meant that Nicoletti (who relieved Gummer) is completely isolated.

The French about to go in for the kill against Nicolleti. Fiorella arriving top right.

Right Flank: Marmont's cavalry decided to push forward against the Austrian cavalry of Placzek by the Monte in order to distract them from the arrival of Fiorella. One Austrain unit fell back instantly, the second was engaged in melee by two French Dragoon units.

The cavalry clash

Fiorella marched his first 2 brigades onto the board, and Wurmser dispatched Dannenfeld's  Division from the 2nd line to head them off.

Fiorella advances onto the table

So at the end of Turn 7 it's decision time for Wurmser. Under the scenario rules he can only get a decisive victory if he stops a French exit - but no chance of doing that with 23 turns to play to nightfall. He also loses 3 points for every Brigade he loses and only gains 2 for every French brigade destroyed - so he's unlikely to build up points that way. Conversely the French can only get a decisive victory if they make Austrian morale fail (i.e. > 50% Brigades spent). So Wurmser could (as in real life) limit the French to a marginal victory by fading away in front of them and making sure he doesn't loose too much in the process - in fact he could even win on points! It will make for a short game, but it will very much be a game in context rather than a stand-aloen slugfest, and so a lot closer to what I'm after (and I've got No Man's Sky downloading tonight!)

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