I know its been silent around here but while preparing for a Warmaster battle in the near future I found out that I have not reported on how our first test run of the Battle of Marignano scenario went.
And to be honest it was a blast - one of the best scenarios we have ever played. The game was intense and shifted back and forth. The Swiss side had almost given up hope of accomplishing anything by turn two when a small division managed to pummel their way through and by sheer cunning (and a bit of luck) managed to seize the camp and win the battle. The battle was fierce especiallyas the french cannons continously blasted the Swiss into confucion and back towards their deployment making a steady advance almost impossible for the cumbersome pike-blocks. the victory was helped by the French commander of the rear guards slow deployment which allowed the swiss pike blocks to get there in the end.
Good advice would be to spread out the pike blocks as quickly as possible while the French should really focus on defending and keeping some cavalry in reserve for destroying anything that gets too enar the camp - remember your objectives :-).
The victory points reflect the close battle: 500 points of Swiss losses to 475 French (mostly cannons and crossbowmen).
It was really close - which is a sign of a good scenario and I am pretty happy with the forces and objectives.
We did discuss a few changes to bring a better sense of balance to the game which I will share with you:
*We would suggest to reduce the distance between the hill and the river to no more than 15cm (instead of 25).
* The player objectives might need some more work - e.g. the amount of troops that Bartolomeo d'Alviano needs to destroy are too high, maybe reduce this to 200 points. The cavalry charges and defence objectives worked well and really brought a purpose to each force. Maybe one of the Swiss captains can get the objective of clearing the river of any remaining defending infantry.
* One change we discussed but could not agree upon was the "Light Horse with Commander Robert III, de la Marck" This was a major pain for the invading swiss and should rightly be so, but maybe using "normal" light horse stats would improve the game a bit.
Anyways, I really recommend trying this scenario if you can manage to gather 4-6 players - it was a real blast and we shall definately try it agian in the future.
There is no real battle report as my computer broke a couple of days before this game but there are a few pictures:
|In the early morning light the Swiss surge forward to push back the defending French|
|Intense fighting in front of the river|
|Yet more Swiss are blown apart by heavy French fire|
|A view from behind the French camp|
|The Swiss have circumvented the hill and have taken the camp!|
|Final positions - only a handful of pike units made it to the hill but it was enough for a swiss victory in a very counterhistorical victory|