Battle of Reunion Concluding Part - Bob's view - The Williamites speak out

Toggy walks us through his conclusions about BLB3, the Reunion Priory scenario and gaming with an army composed entirely of Raw Williamite troops....

A hard fighting Enniskillener from Warfare Miniatures

An eagerly awaited game with Barry and Dave and another chance to play test the latest version of BLB which we had briefly played at Claymore in August.

As usual a very simple looking table, a ruin centre stage and two armies facing off against each other.

I gravitated to the Williamite side of the table, just to make a fuss of  one of Barry's cats, a decision that would have dire consequences for the future King of England.

From the Enniskillen Museum - soldier of 1689 photo by PA.

After a brief chat about the terrain, Barry told Dave and myself about the fantastic martial abilities of the opposing forces, I can only wonder how happy I must have looked when my entire army was graded as raw, the sushi of late 17th century warfare.

After this initial shock, Barry then told us that there were no superstars in Dave's Jacobite force, just a couple of drilled horse squadrons and the Duke of Berwick's horse guard and the Kings Foot Guard, both drilled elite. As my force was approximately 25% larger and most of the troops were similarly matched I thought the Williamites could walk away from this battle victorious.

Hamilton's Regiment - they ran when Tiffin's broke in front of them (collection of BH)

The plan was to get a unit into the ruins and defend then try to use my superior numbers to gradually wear down James' army. Initially this got off to a good start when a unit of horse rode down the Jacobite dragoons, who dispersed into the Irish countryside never to be seen again. This was a new mechanism in the rules, where the charging horse unit goes up one dice level which enabled them to cause a few casualties and win the combat. Dave did the rest with poor dice for morale.

These Enniskillen troops fought hard but were broken by the dynamic Berwick (Painted by Peter McCarroll)

However this was to be the high watermark for this rag-tag army of recruits, for despite managing to get a unit into the ruin, the lack of fighting ability of these raw troops, which is very well replicated by having to score 6 on a D6, was their downfall. The Jacobite force had just enough trained troops to cause a steady drip of retreats and routs, although by no means did the raw troops collapse completely. In fact under the new amendments it was quite easy to keep full brigades in order, until casualties became quite high.

James' Foot Guards managed to take the ruin and Berwick's Life Guard fought to the last man to destroy the Williamite horse & dragoons on the right flank, meaning that when the Williamite Foot started to leave the field the battle was won.

A dragoon horse holder - could be from either side (painted by DOB)

As mentioned the new rules have several new ideas for BLB players, but tie in with Donnybrook and give a fast paced game which is definitely BLB based. A very enjoyable game, which all of us felt would have ended with the same result, but a lot quicker if using BLB2.

Looking forward to the next game, Barry says I can have one unit of raw/elite troops this time.

Ed: Only if you are a very good boy , eat up all your strawberries and desist from taking pictures of trucks.