Friday, August 3, 2018

Snappy Nappy Campaign at Historicon, Part 3

This is the third in a series of posts about the 12 table, 17 player Snappy Nappy "Campaign in a Day played at Hisrtoricon 2018 on Thursday. Guess what? It's 2:10 PM, time for another Supply check (on the fly, I decided the process took enough time to change to every 70 minutes instead of every 60 minutes).

French Garrisons hold Valladoid and Salamanca on Table B.

French (? Gendarmes) garrison holding Canaveral on Table F.

Table A, Portuguese (Brunswick) garrison in Almeida. 

Table G, Spanish militia garrison Merida.

Table R, Baden garrison at Ciudad Real and Casas de Don Pedro. . 

Table E, large Portuguese (Brunswick) garrison in Badajoz. 

Table H, Soult and Latour Mauborg reorganizing near Corruche.

Table C; Ney and Mortier press on, but the Spanish still hold Ciudad Rodrigo and Vitigudino.

Table M; Joseph is still being harassed by the troops of Venegas. 

Some French detached by Joseph are assaulting the Spanish garrison of Zayas at Talavera. For now, it remains in Spanish hands!

South of the Tagus on Table T, Sebastiani tried to stamp out some annoying Spanish Cavalry of ? Cuesta. 

Back at Table O, Soult continues to grind down the Portuguese of Beresford, and turns his cavalry back to deal with the newly arrived threat from Hill's advance upon Oporto. Oporto is both worth a lot of victory points, and is the supply base for Soult (only). If it falls, Soult is in grave danger!

The situation as of the 2:10 PM Supply check. Red cities are held by the British/Portuguese, Green by the Spanish, and Blue by the French. Results:  Victor and Latour Maubor are once again out of supply, and may not advance more than 6" from their present positions. Sebastiani is now also out of command due to the loss of Damiel to the troops of Venegas, and also cannot advance more than 6". This means Sebastiani cannot attack either Talavera or Navalmoral to open the supply line in the central valley of the Tagus.  All of their troops must take a single morale check as well. 

The last gasp attack of the French infantry on Talavera failed. Holy Toledo!
Looks like it's time for that Horse artillery to do a flamenco dance back to said city, as its support looks down to a detachment of Gendarmes.

Wellesley's British make a grand entrance on to Table H, supported by some of Silviera's Portuguese. They are opposed by a thin but solid line of Victor's infantry and guns, while Latour Maborg's troopers and horse battery try to see off a right flank threat from a lonely unit of Portuguese and some British advancing down the  road on the other side of the valley! 

With Beresford's Portuguese having been severely battered, Soult now turns his infantry to face the threat to Oporto as well, while scribbling a hasty update to king Joseph in far of Madrid.  

Venegas and Victor continue to bicker. Joseph has to be careful to leave enough troops to guard Madrid from potential attack!

On Table A, near Macedo, La Romana has rallied the remnants of his command - a unit of Grenadiers, one of 2nd rate Line Infantry, and one of Line cavalry... plus his pontooniers!

Back on Table H, Victor and Latour Mauborg try to stymie the British advance.

Table L - still more of Silviera's Portuguese wait to march onto Table H - but the friendly troops occupying the destination Deployment zone must move out of it first!

Ney and Mortier gang up on Cienfuegos, but seem unable to break through. A cloud of motley (but entirely expendable!) Guerrillas has descended upon the battle from the South as well. 

Venegas pulls back from Toledo, but remains in striking distance. 

Hill advances toward Oporto (North, across the river Duero).

The French are resigned that cannot take either Talavera or Navalmoral on Table T. 

Out of supply, Sebastiani begins his withdrawal from Table T to to Table R (Casas de Don Pedro). 

Heavy fighting continues on Table H.

On Table O, General Beresford is killed in a most gruesome fashion, decapitated by a French cannon ball, his blood and brains spattering his aides. Horrified by the sight, the few remaining Portuguese must all check morale! (This is the first time that this has happened in one of our games, a result of an especially poor roll on the "struck commander" table!). 

O Table C, Heavily outnumbered and outclassed, Cienfuegos yields little ground to Ney and Mortier regardless!

Venegas has retired to Damiel on Table T; as long as he holds it, Sebastiani will remain out of supply!

Sebastiani continues his withdrawal from Table T, retiring along his line of communications and seeking to restore his supply line. 

With the last of the French troops leaving Table T, Zayas and Cuesta regroup, and advance down the road towards Madrid!

Hill advances towards the prize - Oporto!

Further progress of the British towards Oporto!

View of Table O from the Northeast, showing Soult's counter maneuvers, and the last remaining Portuguese holed up in Villa Real (foreground).

On Table H, Thomas (Victor/Latour Mauborg) launches a vicious counter attack upon Wellesley.
"L' audace, toujours l' audace!"  Nappy, you magnificent bastard... I read your book!

British troops stream to the rear.... but more Portuguese (Brunswickers) arrive to take their place. 

Cienfuegos and Sanchez's guerrillas fall back to a defensive position in front of the great fortress of Ciudad Rodrigo on Table C.

Sebastiani withdrawing onto table R. As there are no allied troops there, once he gets all of his own men of table T, he can quickly rally any stragglers and move quickly across the table towards Damiel on Table M. 

Hola, amigos!  The troops of Zayas and Cuesta begin arriving outside Toledo on Table M!
What's an Emperor's brother to do?  Oh, Marshal Jourdan...

Soults maneuvers have worked!  Hill is forced to turn to meet the threat, and leave Oporto for another time. 

The leading troops of Sebastiani have arrived on Table T, seeking to restore their communications with Madrid. Venegas lies between them and their objective, however. 

General "Die Hard" Cienfuegos, aided by Don Julian Sanchez and his desperados, continues to entertain Ney and Mortier before Ciudad Rodrigo. 

More of Table C..

and yet another view!

Situation on Table O. Hill will need reinforcements if he is to hold off Soult and take Oporto!

Victor's counter attacks were very successful! Being out of supply, he can advance no further, though. 

View of Table L (Lisbon). 

The rest of Sebastiani's command prepares to exit table R for Table M!

The developing Battle of Toledo!

Ney and Mortier still trying to concentrate their efforts against Cienfuegos and Sanchez. Another Supply check finds the situation unchanged as far as key points held, with Victor, Sebastiani, and Latour-Mauborg still out of command; more Morale checks, and no more than 6" advance, other than to retrace their supply line towards Madrid.

Play continued for a while thereafter, without any major changes resulting. I called the game at 4:20, as the Events manager had asked me to try to accommodate a GM due to run a terrain heavy game at 6 PM, whose table assignment had been assigned to one of the tables I was using, in error. We cleared that table as rapidly as possible for him, and then did a short debrief of the event. 

Victory points:
French held - Madrid (9), Valladoid (6), Oporto (6), Ciudad Real (2), Canaveral (2), Ponte del Sol(2), Salamanca (2) = 23
Allied Held - Lisbon (9), Merida (6), Badajoz (3), Almeida (3), Ciudad Rodrtigo (3), Damiel (2), Talavera (2), Navalmoral (2), Mora (2) = 32

Owing to the aforementioned need to clear some tables quickly, we were not able to do a count of losses. it seemed to me that they were fairly even, with the edge to the French (The commands of Bresford and La Romana were all but destroyed). Thus I felt it was a significant Allied victory but not decisive (Madrid was credibly threatened but unlikely to fall, Oporto would eventually fall if the allies observed the out of supply  Victor/Latour Mauborg with Silviera, and sent Wellesley to Opoto to support Hill. I thought all of the players fought with skill and good humor, with every single one of them having some role to play in the final result. James, Russ, Dan and I felt that it was of our most successful events to date. I was pleased with how the simple supply rules worked and had an important effect on the game, without dominating it. 

We will likely do another event at The Portal in the Spring of 2019. Who knows, there might even be a return of Snappy Nappy for Historicon for 2020? 

A huge thanks to all of the players, and to Russ, Dan, Barry, Tim, and James who assisted with the set up and take down, to James, Dan and Russ for rules assistance, and for Greg back home who loaned us so much of his terrain,especially the hand made flocked hills and mountains that he made specifically for the April version. Thanks of course to HMGS and the event staff for allowing me to use so many tables for this unique event!



  1. Epic undertaking, Peter! You must have been exhausted.

    1. Thanks, Jon.
      Yes, I WAS exhausted after this :-)
      I spent the next several hours re-organizing the troops to be ready for my Battle of Talavera game on Friday night.While I was doing that, I looked in periodically on he first of Tim's three Jacobite games, which was played out on what was Table M Thursday night. But more on that anon...

  2. Wonderful stuff - an epic undertaking. I can't help but read this sort of thing with a wistful longing to participate in a similar event. Could I produce anything similar myself? I have the armies, even a good quantity of terrain pieces, but ... No. Logistically this would be beyond me.

    I am thinking seriously of getting a copy of the Snappy Nappy rule set though...

    1. Thanks! What you need to pull an event like this off is a team of 3 - 4 other guys (and a bunch of players - at least 8). You could easily re-do one of the events we have already run. With some minor changes to the starting location and different players, it could play out completely differently.... as it did in this case!

  3. Well done, I have enjoyed this a great deal

    1. Glad to hear it, and thanks for dropping by!

  4. That looked like it all worked extremely well, with much ebbing a flowing in fortunes. As you say, the supply rules played their part without turning the whole campaign into a logistical slog. I did feel quite sorry for Beresford however, who never struck me as one of the luckiest generals anyway. Not a nice way to end his part in the campaign.

    1. We were very pleased with how it ran, with major actions on Tables C, T, L, O, and H, and skirmishes leading to a possible battle on Table M. The supply rules had an important but not decisive impact upon the campaign. I think this scenario could easily be run yet again.

  5. See you might do less games but by heck they are much bigger affairs than any I do !!!!

    1. Megalomania is a Napoleonic gamer's vice for sure! :-)

  6. Great connected series of games,Id say the supply rules worked just right,well done on an epic event!
    Best Iain

    1. Thanks, Ian. Next time I need to make some control markers fro towns marched through, etc, but not garrisoned.

  7. Your megalomania is of a most generous kind!
    All three reports have been engrossing to read, but I think that you left your best until last. Great stuff. Loved the (slightly adjusted) quote from Patton too!!!

    1. Glad you enjoyed it, James!Glad you liked the Patton! reference. :-)
      Perhaps the "Crisis on the Danube" for 2020?

    2. Ooh yes, you gotta do that. Early stages, Austrian attack and French-allied counter attack, I presume? Lock it in now! :)

    3. Exactly! we were sort of set up to do it for our first campaign, but would up just doing a tint part of it.