Friday, March 2, 2018

Montcalm & Wolfe - Winter of '55

Battle for Fort William-Henry
Peter fought out the Battle for Fort William-Henry as described in the prior campaign installment.  Peter's account of the battle can be found at Battle for Fort William-Henry.  With a large, poor quality force defending the fence attacked by a better quality but fewer in number force, this proved to be an interesting match-up.  In the end, the British under Johnson was forced to abandon the fort and fall back to Fort Edwards.  Fort William-Henry has changed hands to the French.  Please read Peter's account of battle, it is a good one.

With September 1755 in the history books, on to two condensed turns of winter.

On Winter 1, the British choose to roll on the Command Table and receive five activations.  Shirley and one of the Regulars march to Fort Stanwix, the Oneida attack Fort Presque Isle (and fail), and one Regular marches on the Tuscarora raiding Carlisle.  The Natives are driven from the settlement.  The only action the French make is to move Rigaud to Fort Carillon.
Attrition during the first winter turn hits hard with many militia demobilizing.  The French lose one militia in each of Fort Carillon, Isle aux Noix and Quebec while the British see militia head back to the farms from Fort Cumberland, New York, Albany, and Fort Edwards.  Colonial militia are not likely to stick around during winter.  As expected, all natives return to their settlements for the winter, not to be seen until spring.
End of Winter 1
For the Winter 2 turn, very little movement.  Shirley and one Regular take bateaux down to Albany and Deskau travels from Quebec to Trois Rivieres in an attempt to convince the militia stationed there not to leave.  Desertions among the militia were high again.  The British lose militia in Philadelphia and Albany while the French lose militia in Fort Carillon and Quebec.  Dreadful losses.  I guess war is for professional armies only.

At the end of each year is the Strategic Interphase wherein combatants receive reinforcements.  With the Political Track at '3' on the French end of the track, the French receive a +1 DRM to their Variable Reinforcement Roll while the British must settle with a -1 DRM.

For reinforcements, the British receive 3 x Militia and Monckton.  Monckton goes to Fort Edwards with one Militia each arriving at  Albany, Fort Oswego, and Fort Stanwix.  The Fench draw 2 x Militia and Drucour to the colors.  Drucour and one Militia sail to Fort Frontenac and one Militia goes to Isle aux Noix. 
May 1756
The British take the automatic one Command Point and Johnson travels from Fort Edwards to Fort Stanwix.  May reinforcements include the arrival of three regiments of Regulars.  The Regulars go to Albany, Fort Oswego, and Fort Edwards.  The Oneida ally with the British.

The French likewise take one automatic Command Point and send Dieskau to Isle aux Noix.  For reinforcements, the French receive two regiments of Regulars.  One regiment is sent to Montreal and the other to Isle aux Noix.  No Natives join the French. 
Johnson travels to Fort Stanwix
June 1756
The British, again, take the sure route and opt for a guaranteed one Command Point.  With that single command point Monckton marches out from Fort Edwards to avenge the loss of the fort last fall.  Monckton takes with him 1 x 5-6 Regular, 1 x 3-8 Ranger, and 2 x 3-5 Militia to attack Fort William-Henry. 
Monckton Attacks Fort William-Henry
The Second Battle of Fort William-Henry

With a garrison of two French Regulars, the prospects of holding Fort William-Henry seemed good.  Now, with a force twice its size, the odds of holding the fort are reduced.  Can the French regulars outlast the mostly irregular force of Monckton?  Without a notable leader at the helm, holding the fort is even more in jeopardy.

OB:
British: Monckton (A2D1), 1 x 5-6 Regular, 1 x 3-8 Ranger, 2 x 3-5 Militia
French: 2 x 5-6 Regulars 

Peter, you are fighting over the same ground a second time.

18 comments:

  1. Looks like the French have been caught on the hop and preservation, rather than holding onto real estate might be the best course of action so early in the campaign season.

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    1. The loss of so many militia in the Lake Champlain drainage will hinder the French from reinforcing Fort WH. It will be interesting to see this battle play out. How the forces respond is entirely up to Peter.

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  2. This narrative makes a great read Jonathan, snd a fun way to play a campaign. This might be a method that I migth follow myself.

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    1. Glad you are enjoying this experiment, Mark! The campaign does provide an interesting twist and backdrop for the actions on the field of battle.

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  3. Interesting reading with the lead up to the game. Yesterday I packed up the terrain of a quick Necromunda style game. So I will have to look at the photos to layout the tabletop again. An interesting match up of forces again.

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    1. An interesting situation, for sure. Controlling the river/lake "highways" is key during this campaign.

      Never a hurry to get these games on table. The campaign is here for your enjoyment. Play them out at the pace you wish.

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    2. The game setup is posted. Thanks for the reassurance on no need to rush. When the first siege comes along their will be a delay while I build a star fort, saps and parallels, along with testing out the siege rules.

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    3. Another interesting tactical situation! Game layout looks good.

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  4. Really enjoyable narrative developing and all entirely believable.
    Best Iain

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    1. Thanks! The campaign has drawn me in too and brings importance and context to each engagement on Peter's gaming table.

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  5. Meshing map action with tabletop battles so well is quite an achievement and soeaks well for your system—also for the thoroughness of your reports. Thanks for putting the effort forward to share!

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    1. Ed, your complimentary words and support are much appreciated.
      Thank you!

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  6. This makes for an interesting interaction between players. It might be fun to try with some other board games, especially for a cold war gone hot scenario?

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    1. Quite right about applying this to other periods. I have often thought of using Clash of Arms' The King's War for foundation of an ECW campaign and Kevin Zucker's Operational Napoleonic Series as a basis for a Napoleonic campaign. The possibilities have few limitations (well, besides time).

      For Cold War gone hot, what board game would you utilize as the battle generator?

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    2. I have a copy of NATO: The next war in Europe. I seem to recall each chit represents a Brigade/Regiment. Otherwise I thought you had a copy of Hof Gap or "5th Corps"

      There is also the Sengoku period game you gave me awhile back, that has yet to see action.

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    3. I considered the Central Front Series (I have BAOR, 5th Corps, but not hof Gap) but did not know if the scale was wrong for a campaign game. Scale is 4km/hex. Could a campaign be played at that level?

      As for Feudal Japan, my game remains untouched too but we should explore those possibilities.

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  7. You guys are really tearing through this. Are both of you doing solo play?

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    1. Yes, we are both playing solo. Peter fights the tabletop battles; I handle the operational game.

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