2 by 2 Napoleonics – A battle report

Adam, Jamie and I had a go at 2 by 2 Napoleonics. Of course we used my normal Peninsular War figures, in 15mm, on Big Bases. Using Big Bases for the Peninsular War meant this was really 4 by 4 Napoleoncs.


Forces

Jamie and Adam played the game with me as referee. As umpire my job was to know the rules. Jamie as French and Adam was Anglo-Portuguese.

We used the template army for both sides. That meant:

  • 1 x HQ
  • 10 x Line Infantry
  • 1 x Heavy Cavalry
  • 2 x Light Cavalry
  • 2 x Foot Artillery

This army comes to 39AP.


Deployment

Being Big Base our table was 4′ x 4′. We obeyed the rather loose terrain placement rules.

2x2Nap-60 Table

2x2Nap-60 Table

By default 10AP can start on table. Jamie deployed three infantry Line Infantry units. And probably other stuff but I can’t remember now.

2x2Nap-61 French deploy three infantry regiments

2x2Nap-61 French deploy three infantry regiments

Adam went for two Line Infantry (2 x 2AP) and a Light Cavalry unit (1 x 3AP). The two infantry units deployed on a hill.

2x2Nap-64 British deploy two infantry brigades

2x2Nap-64 British deploy two infantry brigades

The cavalry was deployed on the far flank, basically to limit the French sides ability to place reinforcement points past half way.

2x2Nap-63 British light cavalry lurk beyond the town

2x2Nap-63 British light cavalry lurk beyond the town


The Game

The Anglo-Portuguese had an advantage on reinforcements because both reinforcement points were on their base edge, so arrivals needed 3+ rather than 4+. First up was some light cavalry.

2x2Nap-65 British reinforcements - a light cavalry brigade

2x2Nap-65 British reinforcements – a light cavalry brigade

But Jamie managed to get some reinforcements as well.

2x2Nap-67 French reinforcements arrive from flank

2x2Nap-67 French reinforcements arrive from flank

Jamie decided to advance immediately. Aside from being a good aggressive French tactic, this was also to ensure we got a good play test. Most of the action was focused on the hill occupied by the British infantry.

2x2Nap-68 French advance from British lines

2x2Nap-68 French advance from British lines

2x2Nap-69 French converge on British hill

2x2Nap-69 French converge on British hill

2x2Nap-72 French continue to converge on hill

2x2Nap-72 French continue to converge on hill

On the other flank French infantry chased the British Light Cavalry around the table.

2x2Nap-70 French infantry chase British light cavalry

2x2Nap-70 French infantry chase British light cavalry

Reinforcements continued to arrive including some artillery.

2x2Nap-73 British artillery arrives

2x2Nap-73 British artillery arrives

Two French infantry units charged up the hill.

2x2Nap-74 French infantry charge up hill

2x2Nap-74 French infantry charge up hill

2x2Nap-75 British cavalry continues to evade French infantry

2x2Nap-75 British cavalry continues to evade French infantry

With the Anglo-Portuguese winning the reinforcement battle the French left was looking a bit thin.

2x2Nap-76 French left flank looking fragile

2x2Nap-76 French left flank looking fragile

A French light cavalry unit routed back through their own guns. Pinning them. Not that made much of a difference.

2x2Nap-77 French cavalry routs through guns

2x2Nap-77 French cavalry routs through guns

The French charged the red coats again.

2x2Nap-78 French charge British muskets again

2x2Nap-78 French charge British muskets again

This time they had a flank attack. It turns out flank attacks make no difference. Disappointing for Jamie.

2x2Nap-79 French flank attack goes in

2x2Nap-79 French flank attack goes in

The French infantry did manage to catch British heavy dragoons and destroy them.

2x2Nap-80 French infantry catch big hats in flank

2x2Nap-80 French infantry catch big hats in flank

Reinforcements continued to arrive throughout the battle. Which tended to make the action focus on the French left, where the flank reinforcement point was located.

2x2Nap-81 More French reinforcements arrive

2x2Nap-81 More French reinforcements arrive

Everything was stacked against the French at the hill. They couldn’t budget the British line.

2x2Nap-82 Battle on hill goes badly for the French

2x2Nap-82 Battle on hill goes badly for the French

On the Anglo-Portuguese right found opposing cavalry disrupted.

2x2Nap-83 Disordered heavy cavalry face each other

2x2Nap-83 Disordered heavy cavalry face each other

This didn’t stop the British Light Cavalry going for the French guns.

2x2Nap-84 Britsh light cavalry go for the guns

2x2Nap-84 British light cavalry go for the guns

Then more French cavalry arrived.

2x2Nap-85 More French cavalry arrives

2x2Nap-85 More French cavalry arrives

This would pose a problem for the British Light Cavalry on the left flank. Dodging infantry is one thing but it would be hard to dodge enemy cavalry.

2x2Nap-86 Evasive British light cavalry now have serious opposition

2x2Nap-86 Evasive British light cavalry now have serious opposition

Back on the Anglo-Portuguese right a British cavalry unit was destroyed.

2x2Nap-87 Demise of some British light cavalry

2x2Nap-87 Demise of some British light cavalry

2x2Nap-88 Portuguese defeat French

2x2Nap-88 Portuguese defeat French

2x2Nap-89 Another flank attack

2x2Nap-89 Another flank attack

2x2Nap-90 Portuguese infantry advance off the hill

2x2Nap-90 Portuguese infantry advance off the hill

But it was the Portuguese who took the game. They destroyed a French infantry unit, making five losses, and won the game for the Anglo-Portuguese.

2x2Nap-91 Portuguese win the game

2x2Nap-91 Portuguese win the game

2x2Nap-92 End Game - from top

2x2Nap-92 End Game – from top

2x2Nap-93 End Game - from side

2x2Nap-93 End Game – from side

2x2Nap-94 End Game from village

2x2Nap-94 End Game from village

2x2Nap-95 End Game from Anglo-Portuguese side

2x2Nap-95 End Game from Anglo-Portuguese side


Conclusions and observations

We enjoyed the game, thought the rules were nice and simple, and liked many of the elements. We particularly liked the infantry first volley and stalling. The no record keeping and associated status values as also nice and elegant.

We liked the look of the Big Base units. Generally the conversation from a 2′ x 2′ table to a 4’x 4′ table was seamless, however Jamie did occasionally get confused about the 1″ means 2″ thing. That meant we ended says “it moves 2 colours” instead of “it moves 2 inches” (the rules) or “it moves 4 inches” (at our ground scale).

But we were left with a bunch of questions which I’ll post separately.

2 comments to 2 by 2 Napoleonics – A battle report

  • Good to see you getting Napoleonics back on the table, Steven. How do you feel the rules would handle a historical scenario and what intricacies would you encounter when setting one up?

    • Steven Thomas

      I’m still forming my thoughts. At the moment I don’t think it is a good fit for the Peninsular. But the problems are fixable. I’ll post some questions/reflections on this soon.

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