Monday, 13 February 2017

Botched relief in the Crimea

Tonight I was meant to get the brushes out, but wasn't really feeling it. There were a couple of posts I read in the weekend that made me keen to get in a Crimean War game, so I decided that I would choose a scenario and fight one out.
The scenario that I ended up with was #28 Botched Relief, pitting 4 units against 6 units. The only problem was four of the units in the larger force would only activate one at a time because the commanding general was somewhat inept. Meanwhile the 4 units would be determined to attack and capture the town. Forces rolled for and picked I set the board up in the lounge.

General Linguini had been given the role of raiding the small town of Gederovme, near the Black Sea coast. He had two battalions of Sardinians and some supporting Brits in the form of a rifle battalion and the elite 92nd Highlanders, so it was a pretty potent little force. Two battalions of Russians garrisoned the town, and on the hill to the west a relief force was gathered by General Standoffich, consisting of artillery, cavalry and two further infantry units. Standoffich was of the opinion that Gederovme was not worth expending his small army on, but decided that he had better follow his orders, if somewhat unenthusiastically.
General Standoffich arrives on the hill with the relief force.
The town of Gederovme

The Allied force led by General Linguini.
The Allies advance and the first unit of Russian infantry is sent down from the hill. The Rifles turn to face them.
Gederovme firmly in sight the allies begin an advance in echelon.
As they get closer the first casualties are taken and shaken off as General Linguini rallies his men.
The Rifles and the Highlanders hold off the menace to the flank.
The rifles take casualties, bearing the brunt of the Russian attack.
Fire rains down on the Sardinians as they are bounced back from the town.
The Gordons take the lead on the flank.
And in a hail of rifle fire the first Russian unit is broken.
The brave Sardinians charge the town walls again
But one battalion is shattered by the volleys of musketry coming from Gederovme.
The second battalion from the hill charges down into the Highlanders.
Success! The Sardinians push the Russians out of the Eastern part of the village. But can they hold?
While the melee continues to their right the Rifles target the cavalry sitting on the hill.
The Russians are not deterred...
And they push the Gordons back!
Not that it helps them - in the next volley by the Rifles and Gordons combined the Russian battalion ceases to be an effective force.
Meanwhile in the town the two battered Russian battalions open fire on the Sardinians.
A couple of serendipitous sixes and the massed Russian volleys break the Sardinians. The town is completely reoccupied by the Russians.
Facing off against the Russian Hussars the Rifles start to take a battering. The Highlanders renew their advance, determined to capture Gederovme.
Pacing themselves the Gordons poor in volleys of rifle fire ahead of their charge.
And successfully capture the western part of the town.
Having disposed of the Rifles, the Hussars turn towards the town, but are unable to charge a built up area.
The British unleash a volley into the Eastern part of town and the Russians finally abandon it. There is now no Russian presence in Gederovme.
Unable to activate, the artillery watch on as the cavalry, who are unable to charge acknowledge defeat.
I've made some further modifications to the OHW rules for the Crimea to what I have on my Crimean War rules page. The Russians shoot at an additional -1 (for a total of -3) at long range to represent their muskets not being as potent as the opposing rifles at a distance. The general can now rally one hit automatically by being in base to base contact with a unit, rather than rally off d6 hits, as I found this was too many. Rather than removing a base after 4 hits, I've changed it to five and brought unit strength back to the original 15 hits. This means that units lose 2 bases upon 2/3 casualties and this decreases their effectiveness. It means no single bases running around by themselves anymore, which is much more aesthetically pleasing.

The game was bloody with the Allies barely holding on for their victory. I was certain that the Gordons would not be able to resurrect the situation, but they proved their worth. All in all, it came down to the wire and provided a good hour of entertainment.



  1. A very nice looking game, congrats to the courageous Rifles!

    1. They did a good job up until they became speed bumps for the Hussars.

  2. Great game Nate! Trust the Gordons to carry the day.

    1. My sources reliably inform me that there was a cache of single malt in the town.

  3. You'll have finished your 6x6 by June at this rate :)

    1. 10/36 so far - the challenge is serving its purpose well - no way I'd have had this many games played by this stage last year! I don't think that I even got this many games in by June last year.

  4. Excellent little scrap, Nathan! Very good to see your Crimean War troops back out on the gaming table!

    1. I do love them. I don't know how much longer the bayonets will last though - the figures are pretty old and the weapons are quite thin...