Friday, February 17, 2017

Mr Madison's rules, Mr Madison's Game.....

   After a week of adjustment from fun to work and from sun shine to snow and cold I wanted to put figures on the table and try a game.  While I generally do not do too much solo gaming I wanted to illustrate how my rules for War of 1812 will work.  So I put out a simple meeting engagement with not much terrain to complicate things. Only three battalions of infantry plus a gun for both sides, all rated 2nd class.  The Americans must cross a bridge and hold the crossroads while the British must take those same cross road.

Turns one through three.
Americans advance over the bridge and deploy to the right and left.  They quickly get the artillery into place.  Die
roll for roads are four average dice so plenty of movement.  The British advance infield column.  They are slower to deploy in to line (bad dice).  Artillery takes a turn to deploy into line so it's having a difficult time either staying with advance or unlimbering.  Remember,  you get a disorganization point (DP) for changing formation so most units now have 1 DP.  To remove this you stand still one turn (i.e. dress ranks)  or have a general remove it.  So
commanders are kept busy sorting out the mess their troops get into.  Note the dice behind battalions which tell you how many DP's they have.

  Turn four. 
  American Artillery has long range fire.  No result since you subtract two from die roll for first fire against target.  Commands still hurry about removing DP's.  Both sides sorted out into line, Americans standing still while British March forward.

  Turn five.
  American Artillery fires and hits (i.e. now adds plus one to roll for same target at same range) causing 1DP on the 100th Regiment of Foot.

Turn six and seven.
  American Artillery is in close range. Fires at 100th Regiment of Foot and rolls a 6.  This causes 1 casualty and 1DP.  Close range artillery can be very bad if you are the target.  Muskets along the line cause minor hits so a few DP's scattered among units. Remember that rolls for muskets and rifles are usually long range so not very devastating.  Close combat is close range fire and moving towards contact.

Turn eight, charge!!
  Both sides fire only artillery. You can either fire or move not both.   British gun rolls high and American 1st Regiment gets a casualty and DP.   British 100th Regiment of Foot gets three DP's from artillery fire so now has total of five DP's, with only five stands (from a casualty).  So it is in very very bad shape.

British 1st Regiment of Foot charges the American 23rd Regiment,  while the American 1st Regiment charges 100th Regiment of Foot,  and the 8th Regiment of Foot charges the American 21st Regiment.   Let's look at how close combat works.

1st Regiment of Foot vs 23rd Regiment;  each regiment rolls one dice per stand.  1st Regiment of Foot rolls a 12;  add 2 for bayonet charge but subtract 2 for DP equals 12.  American 23rd Regiment rolls a 14 with no add/subtract.  Difference in dice is 2 so Americans get plus 2 and British negative 2.  Results are British driven back with 2DP's and one casualty and retreat full move back.  The 23rd get 1Dp.

100th vs 1st;

  The 100th rolls 20 on five dice.  Subtract 10 for five DP's equals 10.  The 1st rolls 20 also, but adds 2 for bayonet charge and subtracts 2 for DP.  Difference is 10.  The 100th is routed and disappeared from the board.

8th vs 211st;
The 8th rolls 27 plus 2 for bayonet charge.  The 211st rolls a 27 but subtracts 6 for three DP's for a 21.  Difference is 8 and this time the Americans rout. Run away!

At this point I called the game.  With two battalions gone the British are in serious trouble.

As I say to my kids, what did we learn from this?  I hope I gave  better understanding of  the rules and how they play.  The key point here is the use of DP's.  They can cause no end of trouble.  Commands spend time cheering up units.  A unit with lots of DP's are easy pickings.  More importantly fresh units are valuable.  Long range fire is annoying but not deadly.  Close combat can be decisive but damaging to both sides unless defender is softened up.  Fresh units (less DP's) can be deadly.  Next time different moral classes and skirmishers added!


  1. Looking forward to seeing how your rules develop. For that matter, I'm looking forward to seeing how my rules develop too (LOL). It's a race!

    1. Looking forward to your chocolate box armies game.

  2. Very interesting. The figures look GREAT. The melees look highly variable, but I guess that's appropriate. Such are the fortunes of war. I bet Mark N. would also be interested in these.

    Looks like it's time for some games!

    1. Thank you for the kind words. Will have to have you, Ed and George over for a game soon.

  3. The Brits are in serious trouble! Your small game run-through is a perfect exercise for solo play to work out the game mechanisms and interactions.

    1. Not a good day for the Kings army. But it was a nice run through and fun to see them on the table. More to come.

  4. Interesting and food for thought. Love the war of 1812.