Are you up for a game of Wellington?
I really do have a wonderful life.
This is episode two of a battle report stretched over two gaming sessions, as is required for our group to get through a game of Wellington. You can find episode one at http://www.boardgamegeek.com/thread/386945.
Bobby Tweaks was interested in getting another game on the table in the war room, giving VuduJoie and I 90 minutes to get through two turns of Wellington. Not an easy task, but with the southern French army already possessing one port in the south of Portugal and Marmount ready to move past Wellington to capture the ports in the north, I was relatively optimistic that things could work out for the French in 90 minutes. The cards looked good with plenty of 6 cp cards between the two French hands. Maudibjr was arriving late and Chuck was unavailable, so VuduJoie and I worked to finish the game one on one. We had left off with the southern French army turn, so Spain started us off.
Chuck had left Valencia the garrison of the East and VuduJoie took that force against a lightly armed Suchet to march north. Coming out of Valencia on the attack, the Spanish force decimated the French (rout with 11 kills and disrupts to the French 4. Au revoir Suchet!). Both French armies started building troops in France to prepare for the allied onslaught.
Wellington moved into Marmount, and although the strike was not as decisive as it had been for Blake, Marmount was pushed back towards Madrid. France du Nord had a vision of French flags over Portugal and played a low card that forced an attrition check on any army, but Wellington's force on lost one, which he built back on the next turn.
Blake began harassing the French units in Spain, capturing Zaragoza and then returning to work his way up the coast. Joseph worked his way out of Madrid to reflag Zaragoza and intimidate Espana, who was holding a back field position while Blake rampaged towards the north.
In the south, Beresford captured Badajoz and was sneaking a pincer move to cut off the retreat of Drouet. Things were looking bad, until Wellington decided to press his luck one more time against Marmount.
The first battle had taken place in Cuidad Rodrigo, which Wellington quick recaptured. Marmount had been forced to retreat with Clausel to Salamanca, where he picked up one more troop. With the terrain and other bonuses, Marmount was rolling only one less die than Wellington. Where Blake's attack had gone horribly well, Wellington's went wrong. There were two days of ties, but where Wellington rolled disrupts, Marmount rolled kills. Five British SPs were removed to the one French SP. France stood with eight reinforcements built and ready to come south and Britain in Portugal ready to fall back when time was called.
We did not get to the roll for Madrid or Peace as we both had 2-3 cards left in each power's hand. VuduJoie had expressed during the intervening week that he did not see how the Allies could pull it out after a strong beginning (and whether this was only trash talk to try to get me to be over confident in my assault, I will never know) but I think he saw how quickly things could turn for either of us. Soult had been a lone leader in the south and was ready for a suicide run to get him back to France to lead some of the SPs that had been building in the north. I had the card which gives France one SP for every home duchy if an Allied force gets within one key of a French Home key, and Blake was heading that way. Eight SPs would have been a wonderful way to end 1813. Madrid still in French possession,.. it would have been a beautiful thing.
I have strong hopes for getting Wellington back on the table at Bobby Tweaks' game night in two weeks.