Tally Ho!

Sunday 16 April 2017

War of Spanish Succession - the Easter game

For our Easter game we reverted to a favourite period of the War of Spanish Succession in 28mm using Beneath the Lilly Banners. The scenario is from Miniature Wargames 431 and concerns a combined British/Dutch force trying to capture the road to Lutzingen, defended by a combined French / Bavarian force. The defenders have a hill and some emplacements covering the road. The large wood is impassable.

The Setup

The British / Dutch deployed with their right flank refused and held by an infantry brigade. In the centre was a further brigade and some cavalry, whilst on their left were their final infantry & cavalry brigades.
The British of the right flank
British cavalry in the centre 

The Dutch ready to attack the hills
The French deployed on the right of their line with two brigades of infantry and two of cavalry. The defences were occupied by Dragoons and the Bavarians deployed on the left of the line.  

The French hold the high ground
The Dragoons and Bavarian cavalry

View of the Bavarian position

View from the French guns 
During the briefing the British commander on the right flank misheard who he was facing and thought he was facing a force of Barbarians. So briefly Conan was leading then attack.
Conan the Bavarian

The Battle

In the centre the French began a cautious cavalry advance against the outnumbered Dutch while on the opposite side the Bavarians began their circumnavigation of the woods. The British / Dutch were initially on the defensive.

French cavalry move forward to attack

Bavarians begin their long march
The Dutch seeing they were outnumbered held-back with their cavalry and advanced the infantry into a flanking position to fire into the French horse. This proved successful as they were able to halt one of the French cavalry brigades and so even-up the numbers for the coming cavalry battle.   

The Dutch infantry occupy the woods

British advance against the redoubt
The cavalry battle in the centre proved pretty even with both sides routing a few of the enemy but themselves pushed back. This is pretty typical of BLB cavalry melee - a far bit of luck is involved and normally forces cancel each other out.

In the centre the British toiled forward under musket and artillery fire towards the redoubt. This was  looking fairly ill-fated until the British cavalry were able to rout the Bavarian horse from the field and support the assault. 
British pushing forward

Bavarians long march continues

British horse rout their opponents
The British line-up for an assault on the redoubt

 In the final act of the game the British launched themselves into the redoubt and pushed the outnumbered Dragoons out.
French guns pour fire into the advancing British

Tally ho

The Bavarians finally get into position but too late to affect the game

Up and at um

The redoubt falls

The objective is secure


An impressive and somewhat unlikely win for the British / Dutch, especially as towards the end of the game a quick head-count revealed that Marlborough was so certain of victory he'd left an infantry brigade in the box, thus ensuring he was outnumbered!



  1. I would lije to call mmend Marlborough for his heroic leadership of the attack in tge centre. His crack British units were gradually reduced by fire from the redoubt and as the commentary says the cavalry melee was an interchange of units , decided by the casualties inflicted on the Bavarian horse by the English guns, vecore the cavalry squadrons met. However, having pid tge butchers bill to cross the table Marlborough hesitated before the assault and had to be prevailed upon by his subordinates. with a 'God sir there are only a few dragoons in there' and ' You must assault milordor we can vever show our faces at court again' and ' Attack Sir, the redoubt must surely fall.'. In he went with a regiment that he had carefully husbanded and swept the dragoon garrison from the wall.
    All in all a very good game with an update dd set of rules, the morale system for cavalry and infantry is different and We were astonished to sed a unit of cavalry attacked in the rear byba superior force turnnand beat that force. In BLB it pays to work out the likely results of shooting on both sides to see if you should hold the first volley til you have closed, accepting some casualties as you advanced, or to blaze away at long range.
    The throwing of a die tonsee what percentage of your force you can move each phase is just stupid and encourages defensive play.

  2. We should probably play BLB version 2 at some point and see how much has been changed. Mostly though I like the prettiness of the game!