Thursday 1 November 2018

ECW Campaign Game 8 Part 1

The Royalist commander deploys his forces at mid-afternoon near the Parish Church of Otterly St Mary. Facing them a smaller Parliamentarian force is positioned behind a fordable tributary of the River Otter.
Forces deployed ready for battle at mid-afternoon
Positions at the start of the battle
Having arrived very late to the field of battle, the Royalists had little time before dusk and quickly pushed froward on both flanks. On their right flank dragoons pushed forward and engaged infantry occupying the fields near the ford. While on the opposite left flank, Royalist gallopers swiftly crossed the river and charged into Parliamentarian trotters who had pushed forward.

The resulting cavalry action drew in cavalry reserves from both sides. The Royalist cavalry must have been unprepared from their rushed deployment and were soon routed. (In other words they rolled a string of 1's.)

The advancing Royalist dragoons attacking near the ford were having more success, but were unable to shift the defending Parliamentarian units before the arrival of the centre infantry units and night.

The game clock and advancing cavalry
Parliamentarian defenders wait as dragoons advance towards the ford
A large cavalry action in progress
Parliamentarian cavalry defeat the Royalist cavalry
Actions at the ford
Battle movements

At night fall neither force was in a winning position. Parliament had lost 3 units and Royalist 4 units. A drawn game does not help the campaign at this stage where both sides are trying to control areas. So the options were to: 1) have another battle, or 2) have the attacking Royalists retire out of musket range and restart the battle at 6am on day 2.

Continuing the battle the following day seemed the best option. Both sides would keep their army resolve as at the previous day, but could bring one of their unit types back to full strength. Parliament chose to restore their cavalry and Royalist's their dragoons and commanded shot. So the game would start with the same forces except the royalist would be down 3 cavalry units.

Over night the Parliamentarian dragoons were able to sneak across the river and secure the hilltop on the Royalist left.

As day breaks forces are ready to do battle for a second time


  1. A fascinating storyline falling from a scenario that initially did not seem to hold much promise.

    1. The game clock does add another dimension to the games. I did ponder whether Parliament forces should retire and another game be played, but with a good defensive position they opted to stay.

  2. With the royalists losing several units of horse, tomorrow's battle may be a bit more even. Love your battle maps. If I ever produce a scenario book, I want to you to illustrate it.

    1. Thank you kindly. I do enjoy producing these maps and I find they also help me think about the game.

  3. How would you have handled it had the Royalist chosen a more circumspect advance. given that the chances of forcing the position in the allowed time were slim? (Granted the 1's by the Cavalry made success all but impossible on the day!)

    I was also going to comment on your fine, hand drawn maps - lovely to look at clear, and evoking a lovely "old school" feel!

    1. If the Royalists had decided not to attack, Parliament forces would have had the option to withdraw. A second battle with different terrain and recruiting (order of battle) would have been setup and the Royalists may not have been as successful with their recruitment second time around.
      The maps are quite fun to do and surprisingly don't take too long to do.