Monday, December 27, 2010

British Roughly Handled By Zulu Again! 24th & 80th Foot Lose Another Platoon! When Will The Shame End?

We decided to do a replay with artillery and doubled light horse.  Here are the stats on the units.
24th Foot: Rep 5, Rep 5 officer, with Rep 4 Sgts.
80th Foot: Rep 5, Rep 4 officer, with 1 Rep 4 Sgt and 2 Rep 3.
Naval Brigade: Rep 5, Rep 4 officer, with 1 Rep 5 PO, and 2 Rep 4.
Royal Artillery: Rep 5, with Rep 5 gun commander.
Frontier Light Horse/Natal Constabulary, Rep 5 , Rep 5 officer, Rep 4 NCO.
Irregular Horse: Rep 5, with Rep 4 commander
Natal Native Contingent:  Rep 3, Rep 5(!) officer, Rep 4 NCO
Note that the NNC uses the Tribal Crises Tests.
Captain McBragg, Rep 4.

White Dot: Rep 5, Rep 3 leader. Ferocious, shielded.
Red Dot: Rep 5, Rep 3 leader. Ferocious, shielded.
Yellow Tails: Rep 5, Rep 4 leader. Ferocious, shielded.
Blue Dot: Rep 5, Rep 4 leader. Ferocious, shielded.
Orange Pompom: Rep 5, Rep 5 leader. Ferocious, shielded.
Black Pompom: Rep 5, Rep 4 leader. Ferocious, shielded.
Detached Rifles: Rep 5, Rep 4 leader. Shielded.
InDuna: Rep 5, mounted, Ferocious.

All units and officers were rolled anew for this battle.
Notes on the figures:  All the figures except the 24th foot, the mounted, the Royal Artillery,the Naval Brigade, the InDuna, and the command figures in the Zulu bands were painted about 25 years ago by Al Rees, Jr., and are on extended loan from him.  All figures are Ral Partha, with the exception of the partially painted (now completed) light horse, and the two Europeans in the NNC, who are all Minifigs.

Note that the weird names for the Zulu bands are simply an effort to distinguish the bands from one another.  After this battle they all got dots on the back of their bases.  In future battles, they will all be (insert color here) dots.

The Zulu player was given the option to remove firearm-equipped figures from his bands and set up a Rep 5 band with muskets, range 20", fire dice 1.  He chose to do so.

The British at the beginning.
The Zulu also at the beginning.

Turn 1: British 6 Zulu 4
British are unable to activate.  The Zulu forces except the White Dot, advance.

Turn 2:  British 6  Zulu 4 (Hmmm, I'm beginning to detect a pattern...)
The British are unable to activate. 
The Zulu head advances, and cause Tests of Will for the 24th, 80th, and Royal Artillery.  Both the 24th and the 80th hold for volley fire.  The artillery fires on the Blue Dot Zulus, causing 1 casualty.  The Blue Dot carries on.

Turn 3:  British 1  Zulu 5
The Zulu head advances, leaving the Red Dots to lag behind.  The Blue Dots charge the 24th, who  fire on the Blue Dots, killing 3, and causing 2 to Runaway.
The Yellow Tails charge the 80th, who fire, lose 3, and have an even melee.

The Frontier Light Horse/Natal Constabulary (hereafter known as the FLH/NC) fire on the Orange and kill 1, causing 3 to Runaway.  The rest Carry On.
The 24th melee the Blue Dots, who lose 2, and both Carry On.
The 80th melee the Yellow Tails, evenly, and both Carry On.
The Irregular Horse advance and fire on the Red Dots to no effect.
Turn 4:  British 6  Zulu 5 (beginning to get the picture?)
The Orange charge the junction of the 24th and the 80th, taking 1 casualty, to British firepower, and 3 to British bayonets, including their leader.  They didn't like him anyway, and carry on.  In this melee the 80th loses 1, but carries on.

Turn 5:  British 6  Zulu 3 (4 failures to activate for the British in the first 5 moves. Sigh)
The Zulu Rifles fire on the FLH/NC and score 1 hit.  The FLH/NC return fire and cause 1 casualty.  Both Carry On.
The Orange melee the 24th, evenly.  Both Carry On.
The Blue Dots melee the 24th, evenly.  Both Carry On.
theThe Yellow Tails melee the 80th, no casualties, but 1 in 6 British Runaway.

 Turn 6:  British 3  Zulu 2
The artillery fires at the Black Pompoms, 2 hits including the leader, and they retire 1 full move.
The 24th steps back, fires at the Blue Dots, who charge, lose 2, and 1 Runaway.
The 80th steps back, fires at the Yellow Tails, misses.  They charge.  80th fires in reaction, misses again, and lose 2 to the assegai.
The Irregular Horse withdraws and fires at the Red Dots, with no hits.  The Red Dots Carry On.
The Balck Pompoms advance on the artillery, who fires, killing 2.  This is too much for the Black Pompoms who fail 2d6 and Runaway.
The Yellow Tails continue their melee with the 80th, who lose 2 more.  Both Carry On.
The Blue Dots melee the 24th, who lose 2.  Both Carry On.

Turn 7:  British 1  Zulu 3
The Zulu Rifles inflict another casualty on the FLH/NC, who pass 2d6, adding 1d6 to the next Being Charged test and volley fire.
The Orange charge the gun, who fire and miss, and lose 2 in the melee, leaving only 1 figure.
The Yellow Tails inflict another casualty on the 80th, and wipe them out.
The Blue Dots lose 3 more to the 24th, reducing them to 2 figures.
The 24th withdraws, exposing the Naval Brigade to a Test of Wills.  They form up for a +1d6 volley fire and Being Charged test.
FLH/NC turn and fire at the Orange, who charge.  The FLH/NC (pass 1d6) can see how the wind is blowing, fire 1 shot, and retire off the table.  (They had to retire a full move, 24" for mounted in open order.  My call was not to have them stop at the table, since mounted volunteers only withstood a charge if caught flat-footed.)
The Irregular Horse fire at the White Dots, and miss.  The Natal Native Contingent also fire with 1d6, hit, it's the leader, and 1 in 3 Runaway.
Turn 8:  British 1  Zulu 5
The Blue Dots charge the 24th, who fire and miss.
The Red Dots charge the Naval Brigade, who fire, inflicting 2 casualties.
The 24th fires at the Blue Dots, who charge and wipe out the 24th.
The Irregular Horse fire at the White Dots, who charge, and melee evenly.
The Naval Brigade melee the Red Dots, evenly, but 1 in 3 Ruanway.

Turn 9:  British 3  Zulu 1
Naval Brigade melees the Red Dots, whom they now outnumber 2 to 1, and 3 Runaway.
The last 3 dead 24th foot fire and kill the Yellow Tails (Whoops!  I didn't put the last 3 dead 24th with the rest of the unit, so they moved across the back of the enclosure and fired on the last Yellow Tail.  Zombie British)

The last 2 Blue Dots charge the Naval Brigade, and kill 1.
The Red Dots melee the Naval Brigade, and it's a wash. 
The White Dots charge the Irregular Horse, kill 3, and 1 Runaway.

Turn 10:  British 6  Zulu 2
The Red Dots melee the Naval Brigade, who outnumber them 2 to 1, and kill 3 sailors.
The White Dots wipe out the Irregular Horse.

At this point we called the game a decisive Zulu victory.  They had wiped out or run off all but 2 British units.  The Naval Brigade was down to half strength, and the NNC are only Rep 3.  Even my blatant cheating in turn 8 couldn't defeat the Zulus.

We decided that this wasn't a good indicator of whether the increase in British strength evened the battle.  The British did not activate 5 out of 10 turns, and that was just too much of a handicap to overcome, especially when 2 of the non-activations were in the critical first 2 turns when the British could deal out damage before the Zulus closed.

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