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Subject: Combat at Redinha Session Report rss

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John R
United States
Saint Paul
Minnesota
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Originally posted at Margin of Victory: an in-depth look at board games

Just one day after my victory at Bussaco, my brother and I sat down for a third time to play Commands & Colors: Napoleonics. After pouring some fine homebrew, Blockade Runner ESB, into pint glasses, our version of the Combat at Redinha commenced. Once again Mike took the doughty Allied forces, while I played the upstart French.

Setup
First let me say that this looks like one of the most balanced scenarios in the base game. Again the Allies have a fun mix of average and specialized units, including the Guards Grenadiers and Grenadiers. The French have fewer units, but I believe that the terrain, including two large stands of trees on their left and right flank, favors them.

Early Battle
With a few games under his belt, Mike was definitely more cautious at the start. He gradually linked his left and center armies, pushing for the stand of trees on the French right, which I quickly vacated. Specifically, I wanted to pull my horse artillery back a bit so it could cover the gap in the hill line in my right-center:


Notice the gap between the hills in the right-center of the board. I'm trying to move my horse artillery to cover that gap.

The action then heated up on my right flank as the British made a hard push and I couldn’t evacuate my line infantry in time (1 banner to the British), though I did chew up the British lights a bit to the point where they were a non-issue the rest of the game. Undaunted, Mike sent in his light cavalry to tangle with my own, resulting in my unit being severely depleted. I then moved them out of the way and gave his troopers a face-ful of canister!


The impetuous British cavalry drive home the attack…


…only to be destroyed by a 1 in 216 roll from General John.

Mid Battle
As the British brought fresh troops forward, I linked the French left and center and waited for the final blow. I realized too late, however, that I had made a critical mistake. In letting the British come to me, I was largely backed up against my side of the field, which meant very little room to maneuver (or is it manoeuvre?). To make things worse, I kept pulling cards for the right section of the battlefield, where very little was going on. The British Guards Grenadiers came forward and pushed my skirmishers out of the woods. I cringed and waited for the final blow to fall…


The British begin their final push.

End of Battle
Once again, it all ended in chaos and carnage. Mike advanced a strong line of British Grenadiers and Portuguese line infantry. They took the hills in the center of the map and stared down on the center of my line. The battle looked like it might be decided by dice alone…that is, until my opponent pulled out his “Fire and Hold” card. With three rolls of the dice, he wiped two of my units from the field and left the remaining three in the center the worse for wear.


The French get peppered by musket fire.

Again, the cards weren’t coming. I feebly fired back and moved over another unit of line infantry, hoping to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat. But one more volley from the Allies and it was over:


Alas, the bitter end.

Although I lost by a wide margin (6 to 3), I learned a lot in this scenario about keeping enough room behind you to effectively maneuver and cycle fresh troops and depleted units. This was one of my favorite plays of C&C:N so far, in part because my brother is getting really good at the game!

Stay tuned for more Napoleonics goodness in a few weeks on our blog...

John,
Margin of Victory blog
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Samantha RD
South Africa
Harrismith
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Great Session - this game has become progressively more enjoyable with each play for us too. The tactics and strategic thinking feel very different from Ancients.
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Steve Duke
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Georgetown
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that is an excellent report! very good use of pictures to explain what is happening. and I agree with you the more I play this game the more strategy I see to it. sometimes it does just come down to cards and dice and you are screwed no matter what you try to do. I don't think this is unrealistic compared to real combat at all just 1 of the fates.
I hope to see more of your session reports in the future.
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John R
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Steve:

Plenty more floating around here and on our blog. Going to try to take pics and do a recap every time my brother and I play.
 
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