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Subject: A Turncoat Salvages Napoleon's Empire rss

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Eric Alexopoulos
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Clifton Park
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Napoleonic Wars Session Report
Played on April 21, 2012 at the SWA Game-A-Thon in Schenectady, NY

We had five players for this game. I played Russia.

1805 – 1807 (Turn 1)
Britain opened up the year with an attack on the French naval force off the coast of Gibraltar. The French naval force was annihilated. Britain also launched an attack out of Portugal at Spanish forces in Southern Spain and won a minor victory. France retaliated by attacking British forces in Southern Italy, pushing them further south. Meanwhile, Austria, Russia and Prussia built up their armies. Spanish forces counter-attacked Britain in southern Spain and gained back their territory.

Once again British forces were on the march in Southern Spain but the Spanish troops held firm. France continued to attack British forces in southern Italy and managed to eject them off the Italian Boot. Austria established diplomatic ties with Turkey. Russia and Prussia continued to mobilize troops.

British forces from Gibraltar strike in Southern Spain and score a minor victory. France invades North Africa and begins its assault on Austrian held possessions in Northern Italy. Austria gains Turkey as an ally. Russia persuades Denmark to move towards a friendlier disposition with the Coalition. Prussia continues to mobilize troops. Spanish troops annihilate the British force which set out of Gibraltar.

The British Admiralty makes sure that Britannia rules the waves. France continues to make gains in Northern Italy against the Austrians. Napoleon leads another prong of the French attack against Austria from the north. Austria counter-attacks in Northern Italy but is forced to retreat. Russia moves an army into northeastern Austria to help provide a defense against the French juggernaut. Prussia shuffles troops to the southwest to prepare a defense. Turkey rushes troops to Austria’s aid.

The British Parliament gives support to its gallant Austrian ally. Napoleon smashes an Austrian Army and a French army makes a successful strike from Northern Italy. Austria recruits troops to face the French onslaught. Kutuzov marches another Russian army into Austria and forms an army group. Turkey continues to move troops into Austria to bolster the defense.

Britain convoys reinforcements to Portugal. French forces sweep through the Austrian countryside destroying a couple Austrian armies in their path and taking the Austrian capital of Vienna. However, France is not finished. French forces continue into southeastern Austria where they clash with Turkish troops, forcing them to retreat.

Austria decides it has had enough and capitulates. Turkish and Russian troops within Austria are forced to regroup. Prussia decides to remain neutral. The Coalition Camp refuses to negotiate a peace. All powers mobilize reinforcements.


1808 - 1809 (Turn 2)
Britain attacks Spanish forces in Southern Spain and gains some ground. Napoleon feints toward Southern Russia but then turns due south and takes Turkish holdings in Bulgaria and Romania. Austria, Russia, Prussia and Turkey build troops. Spanish forces push the British back once again.

British Subsidies enrich the Coalition Camp. Napoleon continues his rampage against Turkish possession in the Balkans. Austria and Prussia continue to mobilize troops. Azeris Raids against French forces in the Balkans have little effect. Spanish forces score another minor victory against Britain in Southern Spain.

The British Parliament gives support to its gallant Russian ally. Napoleon decimates the Turkish armies and marches to the gates of Constantinople. France and Russia ponder the implications of a limited Truce in the Treaty of Tilsit. France refuses to sign the treaty. Russia moves troops to the Romanian border. Austria and Prussia continue to mobilize troops. Spain mobilizes troops.

Britain mobilizes troops. Napoleon seizes Constantinople and most of Turkey. Russia moves troops south to join Kutuzov on the border with French-held Romania.

Mud hampers the efforts of all powers. France and Russia mobilize reinforcements.

France looks unstoppable. Austria re-enters the war, once again joining the Coalition Camp. Turkey decides it has had enough and capitulates. Prussia decides to enter the war, joining the Coalition Camp. The Coalition Camp refuses to negotiate a peace. All powers mobilize reinforcements.


1810 - 1811 (Turn 3)
The war gains momentum with mighty armies clashing across Central Europe! A resurgent Austria, along with its new ally Prussia, push Napoleon and the French armies back across Central Europe to the border of France. Meanwhile, Russia invades French held territory in the Balkans. Britain continues its struggle in Spain with little progress.

Austria and Prussia strip their eastern borders of troops to continue the push on France. Massive Prussian and French armies fight a back and forth struggle in northeastern France. Paris changes hands several times. Austrian and French armies decimate each other in Eastern France and Northern Italy. At one point, Austrian troops boldly maneuver a Descent from the Sea to invade Southern France. However, Spanish troops enter France and crush the Austrian force and then withdraw from France. Kutuzov leads the charge for Russia and continues to grab French possessions in the Balkans. Britain becomes bottled in at Lisboa, and is drawn into the Anglo-American War. Wellington is forced to participate in the foreign war.

France manages to push the Austrian and Prussian invaders back to its eastern border, exhausting itself in the process. French troops also take Lisboa and expel the British army from the European continent. Britain’s army in Europe is practically non-existent. Only the fortress at Gibraltar stands firm for Britain on the continent. Austria manages to gain a small foothold in Northern Italy. Russia becomes embroiled in the Persian War but still manages to all but eliminate French holdings in the Balkans. Spain declares Dos De Mayo and decides to leave the Imperial Camp.

France, with its armies decimated, hangs in the balance. Austria commands a strong position backed by a much weakened Prussia and Britain. Russia decides that the undefended Austrian and to a lesser extent, Prussian borders are too tempting a target and turns on its former allies to join the Imperial Camp. The Coalition Camp refuses to negotiate a peace. Once again all powers mobilize reinforcements and gear for an epic struggle to come.


1812 - 1813 (Turn 4)
Buoyed by the prospects of its new found alliance, France wasted no time throwing troops at Austrian and Prussian armies situated along the Eastern border of France and the Low Countries. France scored a couple victories. Both Austria and Prussia redeploy troops to defensive positions in an attempt to fend off France. The British Parliament gives support to its gallant Prussian ally. Kutuzov immediately leads his depleted army into Austrian home territory and claims Koloszvar.

France continues to smash any Austrian and Prussian army which stands in its way. A Papal Bull interferes on the Italian boot, allowing a small British army a foothold on the European continent. Prussia mobilizes troops along its border with Russia. Kutuzov continues to take Austrian territory for Russia. Russia begins to move troops to the Prussian border. Britain begins to rebuild its army.

France crushes the small British army in Italy. Austria attacks and defeats Kutuzov’s small army at Lemburg. Prussia invades Russia and seizes Kovno. Russia mobilizes troops.

France attacks an Austrian army in Northern Italy and manages to force a retreat. An Austrian counter-offensive makes some gains against the French in Central Europe. Prussia continues its invasion of Russia, taking control of Rigna along the Baltic Coast. Emigres and Exiles haunt Prussia, as Kutuzov reappears in St. Petersburg to take command of a large army. He immediately smashes the invading Prussian army at Rigna.

France continues to brutalize the Austrian and Prussian armies in Central Europe and the Low Countries. Austrian and Prussian counter attacks have limited success. Kutuzov seizes Lublin in Austria.

Napoleon, leading a small army continues to wreak havoc in Central Europe but finds himself in Leipzig cut off from the main French armies. In a surprise move, Kutuzov seizes Krakow and then invades Prussia, claiming Breslau.

French armies attack in Central Europe trying to link up with Napoleon but are forced to retreat. Kutuzov moves to Leipzig to join Napoleon and form an army group.

Napoleon takes command of the formidable army group in Leipzig and smashes a nearby Austrian army at Prague.

Russia emerges as the strongest power. France is in resurgence. Austria holds on to territory, but its armies are once again decimated. Prussia remains defiant with a strong defensive position. The powers fail to negotiate a peace. All powers mobilize reinforcements.


1814 - 1815 (Turn 5)
The new year sees a horrific Drought which affects all the combatants. France attacks Austrian troops in Central Europe and pushes them back. Austria and Prussia mobilize troops. Russia mobilizes troops and moves other troops to its border with Prussia.

Britain mobilizes troops. France attacks a Prussian army in Central Europe and pushes it back. France also attacks Austrian forces from Northern Italy; however, retreats after inflicting casualties. Austria repositions troops. Prussia counter-attacks in Central Europe but is forced to withdraw after both sides take minor casualties. Russia attacks the Prussian army at Konigsberg. The Russians suffer heavy casualties but destroy the Prussian army. The Russians rush reinforcements to Konigsberg and successfully lay siege to the mighty Prussia fortress on the Baltic Sea.

Britain continues to mobilize for a cross channel invasion. France attacks a Prussian army at Hanover and forces the Prussians to retreat. Prussia counter-attacks Konigsberg but is completely annihilated. A Swedish army throws itself at the French army holding Hanover and is destroyed. Russia takes Maruria and continues on to attack Warsaw. The small Prussian formation is eliminated.

Britain returns to the continent, landing troops in Rotterdam! France mobilizes and repositions troops. The French also march into Anhalt. Prussia mobilizes troops in Berlin. Crown Prince Bernadotte takes control in Sweden and immediately breaks Sweden’s alliance with Britain.

British troops in Rotterdam abandon their position to execute an amphibious assault in Russia on the Baltic Coast at Estonia. France attacks and takes control of Venice. Kutuzov breaks from Napoleon’s army group and attacks Vienna. The small Austrian formation retreats to Budapest.

British troops destroy the small Russian Formation in Rigna and take control of the key Russian Baltic port. French armies march, virtually unopposed, through Central Europe threatening Austrian home territory. An exhausted Austria mounts a last ditch effort against the French at Venice, but are repulsed. Kutuzov attacks and defeats the small Austrian formation at Budapest.

The Coalition Camp is devastated. France gobbles up Austrian home territory, including Salzburg, and other territories unopposed, thus concluding The Napoleonic Wars.

France has returned to its former glory and appears to have edged Russia out for the victory. However, Austria capitulates to Russia, forcing France to give up its Austrian conquests. Russia concluded a treaty with Austria that allowed it to retain its Austrian holdings and give it the victory!


Time: Approximately 6.5 hours

Some Thoughts:
Excellent play! We had many, many good battles and card plays. The momentum shifted from side to side a couple of times. Most of the map saw battles as well.

As the Russian player, I had a dilemma at the end of Turn 3. France was beaten and Austria was well on its way to victory. It’s possible that Prussia would have offered some competition for the victory. Russia did not have near enough places to grab keys and would surely not get the victory. I did not want throw history out the window and change sides. However, setting the victory conditions aside, I decided it would be a boring upcoming turn to play since my two nearest neighbors were my ally, Russia already owned most Turkish territory, and France’s fate was sealed. I figured the game would be much more interesting, although longer too, if Russia turncoat and allied with France. I was right, changing sides made for a longer, much more interesting game. I never expected to get the victory, just wanted a good game.

We had a very good group of players for this game. All the players were veteran card driven wargamers and most of the players were veteran TNW players as well. I learned a thing or two watching the veterans and also enjoyed the table talk. Looking forward to my next play, especially if this group is involved!
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I never expected to get the victory, just wanted a good game.


yeah, sure....

Great report.

If one follows the simple rule that it is every man for himself, the Franco/Russian coalition happens more often than not.
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Noel Mitchell
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Great game report, thanks!
 
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