|French elite batteries deal death from the Pratzeberg|
Since the game was held on December 2, Scott picked a portion of the Battle of Austerlitz to commemorate the 212th anniversary of this famous battle. Using the rules, General de Brigade, the action would recreate St. Hilaire's attack on the combined Austro-Russian forces as they fought for control of the Pratzeberg.
While Scott provided a mostly unbiased accounting of the battle at MacPhee's Miniature Men, I will provide an account from the perspective of the Austrian commander in whose role I took.
When the battle opens, the long Russian column is committed to a march upon the Pratzeberg. Even though the Pratzeberg objective is in hand with lead elements of the Russian column, the Austrian column commander, Kollowrath, wanted to send new orders to the Russians. Although the Russian commander fails to respond to the Austrian's orders, he does make the change under his own initiative.
Fearing if he continues on his present course he will be defeated in detail by St. Hilaire before the Austrian conscripts can come up, the Russian 4th Column reverses course and begins retracing its steps. Back across the valley they go and climb the heights from which they only recently passed.
|Russians reverse course|
Perhaps ordering the Russians to retrace their steps was wise since the Austrian rabble has great difficulty in undertaking any action.
|Austrian rabble frozen in place|
|Face off on the Russian left|
|Austrian infantry advance upon Pratzen.|
|Austrians reach Pratzen|
|Zoom in on the Austrian right|
|Artillery fire dominates the valley|
|Face-off on Russian left continues|
|French guns in isolation|
|Jagers fall back through Pratzen|
|One French battery withdraws from the heights.|
|Russians finally advance on the Pratzeberg|
Still, the French make no move to take the heights. With that, the Russians make a general assault on the Pratzeberg. With their guns masked, the Allied infantry is forced to engage the French without support. The threat to the remaining French battery is too great. It limbers and breaks for the rear.
|Allies make a general advance|
Having pushed the last French battery off the heights, the Russians are in control of the Pratzeberg. In the confusion of close range musketry fire, the French brigade commander finds himself in Russian hands. With its leadership temporarily absent, the French do not counterattack to retake the heights.
|Russians crest the Pratzeberg|
To ensure that the Pratzeberg remains in Russian hands, the Russian grenadiers coolly pass through its faltering brothers. The Pratzeberg is ours!
|Russians hold the Pratzeberg|
Had the French taken the Pratzeberg earlier, the Russians would have had great difficulty taking the position at the end. A tight game to the end. An Allied victory did not seem attainable at the beginning but pinning the French left with the mediocre Austrians worked in essentially splitting the battlefield into two distinct battles. Allied casualties were heavy but victory was worth the expense. Yes, this is the account of the action to be delivered back to headquarters.