Tally Ho!

Thursday 19 May 2016

Montrose Campaign - week 2

Kinrosshire - May 1644. Royalist Victory


This battle featured a rear-guard action under cloudy sky's. Surprised by the Covenanter forces whilst on the march Montrose mounted a delaying action whilst his baggage and half his army sought to escape. In this battle a D6 is rolled each turn and once it totals 24 the baggage has escaped. So speed is of the essence for the attackers even though they have a 2:1 advantage.

Covenanter Forces
9 * Infantry Regiments in 2 brigades
4 * Horse Squadrons in 2 Regiments
2 * Medium artillery

Montrose Forces
3 * Veteran infantry (Irish Brigade)
3 * Infantry Regiments (Gordon Foot)
1 * Light artillery
1 * Horse Squadron

The Battle

Montrose deployed his forces either side of the dense wood that filled the middle of the field. This wood was impassable to close-order troops so effectively split the field in two. On his left he deployed the Irish Brigade. On the right the Gordon Foot was given the stronger position protected by the river. Leven massed his forces opposite with guns in the centre and Horse behind them.    

The Irish Brigade on the Royalist left

The Royalist right 
The game began on the Royalist right with the artillery opening a fairly ineffective cannonade, and then the Covenanters advancing to long-range before opening fire. On the Royalist left the Irish Brigade staged a withdraw, seeking to keep the gap beyond musket range.   

An exchange of fire near the river

Covenanters pursue the Irish Brigade 

Irish Brigade withdraw
On the Royalist left the Irish Brigade continued to back-peddle , thus preventing the larger Covenanter force coming to contact. Once safely behind the wood they turned and began to exchange fire on fairly even terms. On the opposite flank Montrose infantry actually got the better of the fire-fight as they enjoyed short-range supported from their own light gun.

Irish Brigade turn and fight

Gordon Foot hold firm 
As the dice clicked-around to 24 the situation was stable for Montrose, with both flanks in reasonable shape. So a victory for Montrose in the second battle. In hindsight perhaps the Covenanters should have been more aggressive and not hoped for so much from their artillery.

For future playing of this scenario we will allow the attacker to deploy a little closer (12" verses 16") but not allow any charges in that first go.


Campaign Situation

With a second victory Montrose now controls 4 territories to 2. As a maximum of 3 territories can be "played" in a given battle they will need to chose their best 3.


  1. As you so shrewdly put it Stuart,the Covenanters needed to be much more aggressive . As they had a double line of regiments in each sector of the battlefield compared to Montrose' single line they could afford to close with the first line to short range, take punishment and then come through with a second line,nstill fresh, whilst the Royalists would have suffered casualties. The retreat of the Irish Brigade was a tactical tour de force as shortening the
    line to be defended created an extra unit as a reserve that could have been used to deal with any breakthrough. Shades of Manstein in '43 :-))

  2. The next battle features the Covenanters launching a flank attack - could be shades of Desert Storm