Friday, 27 January 2017

Borodino in 2mm 'Nano-scale'

Murat's Reserve Cavalry Corps as seen from the south-west. On the left, the New
Post road runs up to the village of Borodino.

Recently, fellow gamer Doug Hamm has been working hard on his 28mm 1812 Invasion of Russia collection. This has been in order to stage his spendid Borodino scenario
(Bor-RRROD'-i-no, according to Doug) for ENFILADE 2016.

I couldn't make it this year, but felt sufficiently inspired to see if I could cook up something similar at home using my own Nano-scale 2mm Napoleonics.

The rules I used were based on an old GDW boardgame called '1815', modified for use with miniatures. These, however, have been so heavily modified over time, with so many additions and changes made, that they have really become a 'homebrew' set of rules in their own right, which I now call 'The Limits of Glory' (after Rod Steiger's line in the '70s film 'Waterloo').

I used my solo wargaming command rules to play this through and followed the general course of the historic battle. The one exception was to take Davout's advice and avoid a costly French assault on the Grand Redoubt, focusing instead on a main attack against the Fleches and the village of Utitsa.

Victory conditions were based on taking/holding the following objectives: Borodino, the Great Redoubt, the Raevsky Redoubt, the Fleches, and Utitsa.

The battle pretty much followed the course of action of the real thing: with back-and-forth fighting over the Fleches -- which changed hands four times -- and much heavy pounding with artillery. Loses, of course, were appalling.

All in all, I was very happy with the way the rules worked out. Playing time? About six hours; interrupted by real life from time-to-time.

The playing area which you see in these photos is about 36" x 36".


A general view of the armies deployed: French on the left, Russians on the right. The New Post road runs left to right at the top, and the Old Post road at the bottom.
A view of Borodino village from the ramparts of the Schevardino Redoubt. The Great Redoubt can just be seen in the top right corner.
Same view, but stocked with soldiery. The 'Werewolf of Europe' himself, atop his white horse, can be made out in the Schevardino Redoubt, at bottom.
A view of the field from the west: French Imperial Guard at the bottom, French in the mid-frame, and Russian positions at the top.
View from the south-west. At the top (left to right) run Borodino, the Great Redoubt, Raevsky Redoubt, and the Fleches.
The Russian headquarters at Gorki.
Borodino, under assault and aflame.
A general view of the French assaults. The Fleches are in the middle distance. Note Utitsa ablaze in the bottom left corner.
The French Imperial Guard are content to be in reserve behind Schevardino Redoubt.
Ney's corps has seized the Fleches -- but the Russian batteries on the reverse slope have something to say about that!
Utitsa, up in smoke.
A general view of the field at close of play. The French have taken Borodino, Raevsky Redoubt, the Fleches, and Utitsa.

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