Saturday, February 24, 2024

Battle of Stromschnellen Crossing, April 1809

 Two weeks ago, Czar Barry drove all the way down from Maine for the game. We played Battle Command, and it reminded me again just how much I like those rules (and the closely related Field of Battle, too... of course! I took the Austrians as FML Hiller, and Barry played the role of  Imperial ADC, General Jean Rapp. To keep everything simple, all the commanders were rated as LD 10.

Starting Deployment; the Austrian defenders hope to use the defensive terrain around the town of Sitzmark to but time for their wagon train to cross over the bridge, and their sappers to set the charges to blow the bridge thereafter, whilst exiting as many of their troops over the Stromschellen river before that. A Bavarian Division with supporting troops from the Wurttemburg Royal Guard enters from the left, a combined Baden and Hessian Division enters in the center, and a Wurttemburg Divisuion enters from the right. 

Confederation of the Rhine, 

General de Division Jean Rapp  LD10

Bavarian Division,  Crown Prince Ludwig  LD10

Bavarian Brigade  von Zandt

1 Jager DD6 CD 12

4 Line  DD6, CD 10

1 Bavarian Dragoon DD6 CD 12

6# FA Battery DD6 CD 12

Reserve Brigade  von Kornhold  LD 10

Wurttemberg Garde zu Fuss  DD 8, CD 12

Wurttemberg Gardes du Corps  DD8, CD 12

Wurttemberg Leibjager Garde  DD 8, CD 12

Wurttemberg 6# Horse Battery DD6 CD 12

Wurttemberg Division, Prince Wilhelm

1st Brigade  von Scharfstein  LD 10

2nd Light Infantry DD6 CD 12

3rd, 5th, and 6th Line  DD6, CD 10

6# Foot Battery DD6 CD 12

2nd Brigade  von Neubronn  LD 10

1st Fussjager DD6 CD 12

1st, 2nd, and 4th Line  DD6, CD 10

6# Foot Battery DD6 CD 12

Cavalry Brigade  von Wollwarth  LD 10

Wurttemberg Chevaulegers #2 "Leib" DD6 CD 12

Jager zu Pferd #3 Herzog Louis  DD6, CD 10

Baden and Hessen-Darmstadt Division Prinz Karl von Baden  L:D 10

Baden Brigade  Kister LD10

1 Jager DD6 CD 12

4 Line  DD6, CD 10

6# Foot Battery DD6 CD 12

Hessen-Darmstadt Brigade  Prince Emil  LD 10

3 Line Infantry  DD6, CD 10

6# Foot Artillery DD6 CD 12

VI Corps, FML von Hiller  LD 10

Saper Company  DD 8, CD10   (2 UI)

Advance Guard Division, GM von Nordmann  LD 10

Jager Battalion  DD8, CD12  Rifles

Grenz Battalion  DD6, CD 10

1st Erzherzog Karl Legion  DD6, CD 8

1st Vienna Volunteers  DD 6, CD 8

6# Cavalry Battery  DD6 CD 12

1st Division, FML von Kuttulinsky  LD 10

4 Austrian Line  DD6, CD 10

6# Foot Battery DD6 CD 12

Light Cavalry Brigade Weissenwolf  LD 10

1 Hussar  DD 8, CD 10

1 Uhlan DD6 CD 12

2nd Division, FML von Vincent  LD 10

4 Austrian/Hungarian Line  DD6, CD 10

6# Battery DD6 CD 12

Reserve Division, GM Rohan  LD 10

1 Grenadier DD8, CD 12+1

12# Foot Battery  DD6, CD 12+1

Cuirassier Brigade  von Schneller  LD 10

2 Austrian Cuirassier DD 8, CD 12+1

Wagon Train, Oberst Langsam  LD 8

4 Wagons  DD 4, CD 6

(2 UI)

Close up of the defender's position

The Wurttemberg Division advances swiftly, taking some casualties from the Austrian artillery.

The Baden Brigade advances on the Erdbeerenfeld farm, backed up by the Hessians.

The Wurttemberg Light Infantry takes the bulk of the casualties covering the advance of the columns.

Baden Jagers are in the farm complex already, and not a wagon has retreated over the river as yet!

Not to be outdone, the Bavarians press the attack as well, taking some point blank fire in the process. 

A Bavarian column supported by some Dragoons charge the crack Austrian Jagers; effective rifle fire drops many of the Bayern!

The Bavarian attack columns are repulsed in the center as well!

Oberst Von Langsam gets anxious as not a single wagon from his train has yet to cross the bridge!

Two Austrian Cuirassier regiments charge the Wurttemburg Dragoons!

Austrian Grenz charge the Bavarian Light infantry in the Hasenhüpferwald!

Austrian Jagers form square, with a regiment of Bavarian Dragoons in charge range! Two of the 4 wagons have finally crossed the river!

General Rapp receives a string of messages from the Emperor urging him to make haste, and thus a Wurttemberg Infantry brigade prepares to charge the Kaiserlick guns on the Harschberg. 

Bavarian artillery fire has blown a large hole in the Austrian left center; routers crowd the wagons seeking the relative safety of the far side of the river!!

Eagle's eye view of the field; the Bavarian Division has suffered heavy losses (upper left corner). 

View from the Confederation lines. 

Volley and counter-volley, charge and counter charge on the Harschberg!

The Wurttemberg Royal Guard Cavalry and Infantry charge into the previously opened gap in the Austrian defensive line!!

The Royal Footguards are routed, as the whitecoats begin to pull back, constricting their perimeter! All of the wagons have now crossed, but the bridge is not yet ready for demolition!

Wurttemberg infantry presses the attack!

Exit stage left, even!

The Footguards have rallied!

More Austrians pass over the bridge, as their sappers work furiously to prepare the last of the charges!

Austrian Cuirassiers chase off the Wurttemberg Dragoons and Jagers zu Pferd. 

The Austrians are out of Morale points, and constrict their perimeter further. The Sapper captain reports that the bridge is mined and ready to blow on the orders of FML Hiller. 

Wurttemberg Light Infantry makes a clever move to shoot the Austrian Cuirassiers in the flank. Evidently they had too much beer with lunch, as their fire is utterly ineffective!!

The Wurttemberg line infantry columns continue to press onward.

Austrian Uhlans charge the Wurttemberg Guards du Corps, as the Bad4rs advance through the Erdbeerenfeld farm complex. 

Situation in the center at the end of the game. The wagons have escaped, and the bridge is ready to blow on the next Event card, but the Austrians have taken heavy losses and will doubtless have to sacrifice more than a few of their units in Sitzmark town and beyond to allow for the destruction of the bridge; a minor victory at least to General Rapp!


  1. Wow - lots going on in that game, Peter - what were the actual victory conditions - it seemed to me that the Austrians might have won - even if only just?

    1. Austrians must accomplish:
      1) get the wagons off safely
      2) blow the bridges so that it does not fall into enemy hands
      3) get at least 40% of their forces across the river

      At this point they have accomplished #1, and are set to accomplish #2 (Requires the Event card AND a successful roll!)

  2. Super AAR and toys all look great on new (?) mat. Battle Cmd another excellent iteration of PK/FOB

    1. Glad you enjoyed it, Gary. It is indeed the first outing for these mats!

  3. Great report and such a lovely looking game, top notch!!

    1. Thanks, Donnie. I had resisted getting any of the new mats out there, but these were well worth it,

  4. That looked like a good-sized battle, big but not too restrictive. The mat looks great. I think you previewed it in an earlier post and I went off an had a look through their ranges again.

    1. This is the "New Europe - no roads" mat from Cigar Box.

  5. Quite the spectacle! And all the new troops are out there and now blooded.
    Even new mats, which BTW are impressive. Rapp can thank the dice gods, running the operation based on activating supply trains hobbled the Austrian command to get any meaningful tightening of the perimeter until nearly all of it was pinned.
    Very pretty game.

  6. Thanks, Joe. The diece gods don't usually favor Czar Barry (aka Rapp), and the attackers took fairly heavy casualties to start, but after that it was tough going for the Kaiserlicks! I had to choose MOVE for the whole army, when only the wagons really needed it, because they were just sitting there without it! :-)

  7. What a ripper Peter! The tension and excitement come through clearly in your report too. Lots of new Bavarians in their maiden outing, but it was those lovely yellow, black-cuirassed garde du corps that really caught my eye!
    Regards, James

    1. Thanks so much, James! They are eye-catching, aren't they? Of course, there was a mere squadron of them, but hey....