Victory Results:
 54 %
Record a victory for BOTTOM ARMY  46 %
Total plays 41 - Last reported by anaxam on 2023-05-05 15:30:53

Laon - 9&10 March 1814
(French Right)

Historical Background
After Napoleon’s catastrophic defeat at Leipzig, the Allies surged forward to overrun Germany, and continued the campaign into France during the winter of 1813-14. They still followed the strategy of engaging Napoleon’s subordinates, but not Napoleon himself, for the Corsican Ogre was still dangerous and won several brilliant victories. Overall this strategy was working as several Allied armies pushed ever deeper into France. In February, Blücher’s army had advanced on Paris, but Napoleon had turned on him, forcing a precipitate withdrawal to avoid battle on unfavorable terms. Blücher chose to fall back to Laon and concentrate there because it was a strong natural defensive position and an important road junction. Blücher deployed his 87,000 man army and waited, finally willing to risk battle with Napoleon.
Whether due to sheer audacity or woeful intelligence because of lack of cavalry, Napoleon split his much smaller army, sending Marmont with 10,000 men to block Blücher’s retreat route while keeping the remaining 37,000 to assault Blücher. Marmont successfully probed the Prussian left on March 9th, capturing the village of Athies. As evening approached, Marmont detached Col. Fabvier with 1,000 men to link up with Napoleon’s forces and allowed his men to forage. Prussian cavalry, however, alerted Blücher to Marmont’s isolated position, and he lost no time in ordering the Prussian corps of Yorck and Kleist to attack.
The attack came very close to destroying Marmont’s force. Not only did the Prussians push back Marmont’s surprised and disorganized troops, they also cut the Rheims road in the French rear and were closing on the Festieux Defile, the only remaining escape route. Col Fabvier countermarched to the sound of the guns and arrived in time to re-open the Rheims Road, and 125 Old Guardsmen held the Prussians at bay at the defile. Marmont’s survivors were able to escape and reform later, but losses were heavy—over 3,500 troops and 45 cannon.
The stage is set. The battle lines are drawn and you are in command. Can you change history?


Set-Up Order

Forest 4
Hill 6
HillRugged 6
Town 3


Battle Notes

Prussian Army
• Commander: Blücher
• 5 Command Cards & 4 Iron Will Counters
• Optional 5 Tactician Cards
• Move First

Line Infantry Light Infantry Grenadier Infantry Reserve Infantry Militia Infantry Light Cavalry Heavy Cavalry Cuirassier Heavy Cavalry Light Lancer Cavalry Militia Light Lancer Cavalry Foot Artillery Horse Artillery General
5 1 2 2 2 1 1 1 1 2 2 1 5

French Army
• Commander: Marmont
• 4 Command Cards
• Optional 4 Tactician Cards

Line Infantry Light Infantry Young Guard Cuirassier Cavalry Guard Light Cavalry Foot Artillery Guard Foot Artillery General
5 2 1 1 1 2 1 3


8 Banners

Special Rules
• The town hexes form a Temporary Majority Victory Banner Objective worth 2 Victory Banners for the side that occupies the absolute majority of these hexes at the start of the turn (Temporary Majority Victory Banner Turn Start)

• The Festieux Defile hills are rugged hills.

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rkeffert replied the topic:
8 months 4 days ago
Played this through twice as a solo game, generaling the Prussians first and then the French. The game is definitely more fun for the Prussians with the heft to deliver a knockout, whereas the French are more likely to win through attrition of the Prussian attacks. In both games the Prussian left swept through Athies to pressure the French center. There are some potent French forces on the French left (the three guard units and the cuirassiers) but they did not significantly factor into the battle either time (missed opportunity perhaps?). Prussian wins were 8/6 and 8/4. I thoroughly enjoyed the scenario solo, but might find it less enjoyable if I had to play the French side against a live opponent.
kostas63 replied the topic:
2 years 4 months ago
Vittoria Francese 8-7. I francesi terminano l'occupazione di Athies, pur sapendo che presto avranno a che fare con i granatieri di Von Horn. I prussiani non hanno fretta vista la superiorità numerica e preferiscono avanzare in massa nel centro. Poi, come previsto, Von Horn assalta la città ma la situazione si complica e i francesi, pur perdendo una parte dell'abitato, tengono duro sulle posizioni di partenza. Nansouty manda i corazzieri d'appoggio nel centro e avanza con la Guardia. Sulla destra Mortier decide che ne ha abbastanza, abbandona Athies e ripiega con i pochi rimasti. Nel centro i prussiani hanno la meglio ma a parità di perdite la battaglia viene decisa da una carica dei cavalleggeri della Guardia che eliminano sulla loro sinistra una batteria a cavallo prussiana.
LARS replied the topic:
2 years 11 months ago
8-6 win for the Prussians. Marmont was finally overwhelmed but Prussian casualties were tremendous.