Tuesday, 17 December 2013


An epic day. We had James and Mark from ANF make the long drive south to join us for a game intended as a playtest for a set of Napoleonic rules we've begun to tinker with. I'd built the terrain almost twenty years ago and left it with Mitch way back then, and not surprisingly at all the notorious hoarder still had it tucked away at the back of his shed. So we fished it out, I dusted it off and went to work with plaster and paint, glue and flock, and had it ready in time for the big day.  Being a model of the field of Talavera, we thought it fitting we should go for the Battle of Talavera.
James has published a splendid account of the game on his blog with plenty of great photos, so I'll just keep it simple here.
Initial deployment looking south along the Portina brook. Villatte's division in the foreground.
Aerial view, Anglo-Spanish below, French above.
Villatte advancing towards the valley north of the Medellin supported by Beaumont's light cavalry brigade.

At the southern end of the line, Leval's "German" division of IV Corps advancing on the Pajar redoubt.

Here at the northern end Anson's British/KGL light cavalry clash with Beaumont.

Bottom right the Hessians have brushed aside the Spanish protecting the redoubt's right,

and so Campbell brings forward Kemmis' brigade to plug the ugly gap.

Here Ruffin's brigade advance up the eastern slopes of the Medellin.

The Vistula lancers (represented here by Prussians-sorry), shunt some British beyond the stream. Unfortunately they failed several subsequent manoeuvre rolls and so were stuck there to be picked off by musketry until breaking.

Up the other end Anson has had the better of the French chasseurs and hussars but now finds himself facing a division of dragoons.

From behind the centre of the Allied line. A single French brigade has punched through. A tenuous foothold.

The remaining photos were taken the morning after in much better light.

This one you've already seen. I can't seem to get rid of it. Still, worth a second look.

Bloody great day/night of gaming. Really good to have our friends from Avon there. The rules are a blending of Empire IV (or maybe V? who's counting?) and Fire'n'Fury mostly and seem promising. A tiny tweak here and there and we'll try them again Russo-Prussian v. French 1813. Next year.


  1. Great terrain, as well as the figures and look of the battle. I haven't played Age of Eagles but I believe they are a set of Napoleonic rules based on Fire and Fury.

    I like spotting the Airfix figures amongst the various units you have.

    1. You are right about Age of Eagles. With no squares or skirmishers (There is an extra range allowance for skirmish capable brigades, and an abstract formation for a brigade "en tirallieur"), and musket range of 2", for me they fall short. Having said that, they played a part in inspiring us to attempt something more to our own tastes. Happy to hear you like the look of the game, which is an aspect I've always placed a high priority on.

    2. Oh, and we have a kind of unwritten law to always include a few Airfix units. A "tip of the hat", if you will...

  2. Lovely photos John! Thanks again to you as mien host and to all the fellas for a great game and weekend.

    Here's hoping that we can make it an annual event, hey?!

    1. Absolutely James, perhaps even a quarterly event. Two at yours, two at ours. I'll get started on the next battlefield very soon. As soon as I can decide which one. Any suggestions?

    2. Gosh, where to start?! An 1814 battle could be nice. We are hoping to do La Rothiere, Craonne and Toulouse (plus either Chippewa or Lundy's Lane for a bit of variety), so one of the others perhaps?
      Or, if you go outside the bicentennial years, you have an almost unlimited choice. In the Peninsula we have done Fuentes de Onoro and Albuera twice, but would gladly do either or both again. Buçaco, Barossa, Coruña? Any of the 1809 battles, to push you to do more Austrians? Aspern-Essling would be marvellous terrain to build, yes? There's just so many, which is why it is THE period IMHO (ha, ha)!!

    3. Who needs pushing? Aspern-Essling could be the go. And maybe a custom built Waterloo for next year.

  3. A great looking game - the pic of the Airfix highlanders is particularly excellent!

  4. Great pictures, and a great looking game overall!