Sunday, 5 March 2017

Finding the Enemy.

After my previous post showing my attempt at drawing a Scharnhorst type map for the Blucher rule system, As I wanted a map for my ACW 6mm troops, I put the map to use this morning.

The map is a 13 x 9 grid, roads are in brown, rivers blue, the brown/green rectangles are crop fields, red squiggly lines are difficult or rocky ground, patches of green for forests and hills abound. There are also nine towns on the map, the smaller towns are shown with a red circle and are worth one victory point (VP) to whoever holds it, the larger towns are denoted with a red square, they are worth two VP's.

I will explain more as we progress.

The Confederates won the roll for choosing the map edge, I only allowed the narrower east or west edges for this game. They chose to enter from the east, leaving the Union to enter from the opposite side.


Each side has four columns as depicted on the faces of each die. Two of the columns on each side are dummies or decoys, at this point in time, we have no idea which columns are actual divisions of troops and which are the decoys.

Conf. Column 1 moved three moves along the road from entry at N2 to grid reference L2, occupying the large town of Walden for 2VP's.

Union Column 1 travelled three moves along the road, passing through and so claiming the small town of Buckden situated at B9, the column ended its move at C9.

Conf. Column 2 entered the map at the town of Howgill (1VP) and advanced to L4.

Union Column 2 headed east, passing through the town of Carlton (1VP) I have placed a red disc on Carlton, it should of course be blue, before halting in C2.

Conf. Column 3 headed west along the road to L8.

Union Column 3 entered on the road at A2 and at the crossroads in Carlton, took the road heading south.

Conf. Column 4 arrived on the map in Howgill N4 and then turned south.

Union Column 4 marched along the road from A9 and making camp for the night in the vicinity of Buckden B9.

At the end of Day One, the Union hold 2VP's to the Confederates 3VP's.

Positions at the end of Day One.


In the Scharnhorst rules, columns are restricted to three movement points (MP's) on the first day, each day after, that is increased to six MP's. However, I am restricting movement to three MP's throughout until a valid battle has been declared, or only real columns, as opposed to decoys, remain on the map.. At that point all columns will be allowed to move a maximum of six MP's in an attempt to make it to the battlefield.

You may have also noted, that all the columns are travelling along roads. This is because...they did! Unless a specific mission entailed travelling across country, the army stayed on the roads, or what passed for roads at that time.

Conf. Column 3 continues north and on reaching the town of Litton (1VP), turns west and moves to J7.

Union Column 2 continues east, passing through the large town of Burton (2VP) and stops at F2.

Conf. Column 2 keeps moving west, passing through the small town of Cavendish (1VP) to H4.

Union Column 1 follows the road as it swings north to D7.

Conf. Column 4 continues south then east to the town of Litton L7.

Union Column 3 swings south to C5.

Conf. Column 1 heads south out of Walden, then west to K4.

Union Column 4 Also swings north, following Column 1 to D8.

At the end of Day Two, the Confederate hold 5VP's the Union 4Vp's, the dice at the top of the photo is supposed to show the current VP's but with my usual photographic skill, the red die is only partly in shot.

Positions at the end of Day Two.


Conf. Column 3 moves two squares west, passing through the large town of Mardon (2VP's).

Union Column 1 is on the same road and stops adjacent to the Confederate Column 3 on F7.

Both sides roll to see if their column is real or a dummy. Odds being a decoy.
In this case both columns turn out to be decoys.

Both columns are removed from the campaign map, which now leaves only a single decoy army for each side, the remaining two are real forces, but we still don't know which is which or what the real forces will comprise of. Exciting isn't it? Did I hear a groan from the cheap seats?

Conf. Column 4 rushes west to Mardon H7.

Union Column 3 passes through the small town of Malham moving north east to E4.

Conf. Column 1 enters Cavendish and turns north to J3.

Union Column 4 moves north then west to F7.

Conf. Column 2 moves a single square west to G4.

Union Column 2 continues east to J2, which puts it adjacent to Confederate Column 1. This will cause a roll for real or decoy columns.

The photo has washed out for some reason but you can clearly see two odd numbers, so both columns are decoys.

They are removed and of course we now know that everything on the map is an actual force. This is also the positions at the end of Day Three. The Confederates now control 7VP's to the Unions 5VP's.


Conf. Column 2 now has six movement points (MP's) as there are no decoys left on the map. It moves south through the hills, each grid movement costs 2MP's as it is off road, it ends at F6, which is adjacent to Union Column 4 located at F7.

The Confederates declare a battle and designate a battefield of F6, F7, G6 and G7.

Union Column 3 rushes south and east, but with a single MP left cannot cross into G6.

Conf. Column 4 uses 3 MP's to travel one square west on the road, and one square north to G6. This puts both the Confederate columns on the battlefield, but also means that Union Column 3 now will have to enter a part of the battlefield controlled by the enemy, this makes getting on as a reinforcement a little more difficult.

We now know the battlefield, where each column is, but not yet what each column consists of. A simple table was made and two dice thrown for each column. The results below.

Union Column 4 rolled a 1 so will consist of 4 infantry brigades, 1 artillery battery and 1 cavalry brigade. I don't need to explain the rest, you are capable of reading it for yourself.

A close up of the designated battlefield, shows the major terrain features that will be on the table. A river on the southern edge, a wood or forest, a road running east/west and in the north eastern quadrant a couple of hills. I shall add some minor terrain as well to make the whole thing more interesting.

I hope to fight this battle in the next day or two, so will take lots of photos and of course present it as a battle report for your enjoyment. It would seem the Union are up against it in this one,


  1. Bring on the battle! Looking good for the Rebels.

    1. Thanks Rodger, they certainly have a huge advantage at the beginning, but need to take advantage of it.

  2. I do like the use of decoys there, it is exciting... the suspense of it. I suppose the tension is whether to grab as many VPs as possible, vs. bunching up so when battle is engaged you have max forces available. Good stuff!

    1. Thanks buddy, it really makes you think about the movement of the columns, especially as two of them are decoys, keeping them all in supporting distance is the key.