Tuesday 3 February 2015

BBB-fest - Montebello, Langensalza and Spicheren!

Last night was something of a BBB-fest at the local club. Six of us fought three of the new smaller scenarios I've created recently. One pair fought the full Spicheren 1870 scenario (a corps-sized Franco-Prussian battle) comfortably in 3 hours. The other two pairs fought Langensalza 1866 and Montebello 1859 (both roughly division-sized), and finished these quickly enough to swap tables and fight them through to completion a second time. Obviously we are all experienced BBB players, but even so, to finish a game in an hour and a quarter seems like a good result.

The Spicheren game resulted in a hard-fought draw with plenty of casualties piled up on both sides. The French were still hanging in on the Rotherberg, but there were Prussians in their rear in Stiring Wendel and behind Forbach. A view from the Prussian end of the pitch here:

Spicheren 3 - T5 or so, still fighting over the Rotherberg

Langensalza was a real teaser. As one of the lads put it, not so much a wargame as a tactical puzzle. We played using the adjusted victory target: Prussians needing just 1 objective for a draw and 2 for a win. In the first game, every Prussian unit was destroyed - Hanoverian win. In the second one, I thought my Prussian opponent was going to embarrass me. He managed to Attack for 6 successive turns, preventing me from crossing the Unstrut. That left me just two turns to cross the river and seize all the victory locations. I managed it, but was a little fortunate that my movement dice didn't let me down. I'm keen to have a go as the Prussians and prove that they can win this!

 (There are some nicer photos than that in my Flickr stream.)

Montebello was similar but different. Again, the pressure is on one side (this time the French) to attack so as to discourage their stronger Austrian opponent from advancing. This seemed to produce exactly the right effect. When I played it I did actually get von Hessen's troops not only onto the table but into the Cascina Nuova. However, the French broke them and pursued them to take Foliarina. I had a chance of capturing Genestrello but my two passive units, who outnumbered the battered French defenders by 4:1, decided not to charge. So I lost. The other pair to fight this achieved a draw.

Which, with one victory and one defeat, plus last week's KGC game which Colin ruled a draw, brings my tally for the year to:
Games played to conclusion - 8. (not counting the one I refereed)
Won - 2.
Drawn - 1.
Lost - 5.

So I commend these games to you - Montebello and Langensalza are both really quick and fun tactical challenges, and easy to set up. Great for a small evening game!


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