Sunday, February 18, 2018

Field Commander Napoleon

It has been too many years since I last visited this part of the town.  I am happy to be back and dusting off my coat and hanging my hat up once more.

I thought it would be a good start by posting up my play though off the first campaign in Field Commander Napoleon.  If you have heard of it you can find it here.  I have a few of their solo/co-op games and this is my latest purchase.

Field Commander Napoleon allows you to play through 11 of his campaigns starting in 1796 and ending in 1815.  The write up below is my first play through of the game, so I started, like Napoleon himself, in 1796.  This is where my comparison to him ends :P.   My luck hasn’t changed since I last posted and my chance to conquer Europe was left………. Well it never got start really.

Here Is the board all set up, ready to play and also the battle board.  This was what attracted me to this game and I must say that it didn’t let me down.  The battles are short but very tactical so I got the sense of playing a board game and miniature game (even though it was only chits).

March 1796 (First turn - spoilers........................only turn)

Napoleon knew that if he were to win this war quickly he would need to hold Turin at the end of March, to allow for adequate control of the area.  As a result, the divisions commanded by
Augereau, Kilmaine, Garnier and Maynier would head north to Turin while Napoleon himself and the divisions commanded by Serurier, Stengel, Macquard and La Harpe headed east to Savona.

With only a garrison and fortification holding Turin, it should have been an text book battle, but those plucky little defenders held out and managed to reduce Garnier's command to so few men that it would take a long time to get them back to fighting standard again. (The battle wasn't much to look at, so no photos)

Hearing good news concerning Turin, Napoleon marched into Sarona, confident that his men could take it (his was his first mistake).  The armies prepared for the fight ahead, and that is when the first piece of bad news was brought to Napoleon's attention.  The Piedmontians (?) had managed to ambush part of the supply train and had managed to supply themselves with some of the French ammunition for the battle to come.  This delay meant that precious hours had been lost and Napoleon wasn't sure that there would be sufficient daylight left.

With the last rays of the day, slowly dissappearing, La Harpe was ordered to engage Provera's division but refused to (he failed his activation roll), and as the battle draws to a close, Napoleon is left with no other choice but to make camp for the night. And to have a serious discussion with La Harpe.  This then resulted in the French contesting Savona. (The battle came to an end after 3 rounds and as I had not won, I had to roll to determine the results of the battle and both sides would not leave and encamped with no further battles being fought during the French turn, in that province).

Augereau and Kilmaine  force march from Turin to help reinforce Savona.  The wagon train finally caught up and were able to (9 supplies) and build a fortification in Savona and a scout to reduce the chances of further supplies being stolen (which they didn't - stupid scouts)

 (During the enemy's turn you have to divide the enemy forces in to nationality and into groups of a certain number determined by the scenario then roll on their movement table to determine where each group moves to.  With my usual luck, the enemy instead of moving in a nice spread, converge on 2 targets.)

The Austrians were not going to take the invasion of Piedmont lightly and managed to send a full 2/3rds of their forces in Genoa in to Serona.  While the remaining move in to Turin.

The armies prepare to face off and Napoleon learns that some reinforcements are coming to assist the Austrians and uses his scout to prevent it but at the cost of more supplies.

Again daylight causes the battle to cease and both armies encamp again.  While not the result he was hoping for Napoleon decided that the battle could have been far worse than what he had suffered.  It was just as his bath had been drawn and a fine cognac poured that he learned the terrible fate about Turin.  
Maynier's division had been surprised and out numbered, and while they defended for as long as they could, they were swept away by di Cuto's cavalry division and Maynier's division had scattered.  

This meant that at the end March the French, did not hold two objectives and lost the campaign as a result. 
Not the result I would have liked to have in my first game.  I would have liked to make it in to the second turn but I really enjoyed this game.  The tactical map, offers all the tactics of a miniature battle, but in such a smaller time frame.  The tactical options I had to consider were more than i thought I would have to (which is a good thing).  I cant wait to try this scenario again.

I now want to get the Rommel variant and maybe the Alexander one as well.  I also have Tiger Leader and Warfighter WWII and hope to write up my games for them as well.  The next thing i need though are some 6mm minis so I can pimp up the tactical elements.

Next time Gadget, next time.