Monday, December 31, 2007

Absolutism attempted in 1651

Ogólny Ludwik, Captain-Gracz, Commander of all Duchy of Mieczyslaw forces was not left idle for long.

The forces of Absolutism found fertile ground in Owijać-Drewna lands and a return of Kardynalny Dobry brought the situation into action in 1651.

Dobry had come from Rome with orders to re-establish his rule, only now he was to bring with him the power and might of the Church and its ideal 'rule' as expressed in France. Absolutism found many supporters with the survivors of the 30 years war whom upon return were fetted, but now two years later had become dissolusioned with the slow progress of Duke Czeslaw ewa Jerzy, the young Duke (25) and the old Ogólny (66) were a good match for one another, for while the Ogólny had served in Bavaria and Paltinate, the Duke had worked with the Dutch and English, their combined talents made assembling the needed counter to the Kardynalny relatively easy.

What was not expected was the sheer size of the war chest Dobry had brought with him from Rome. The Papacy had determined that no further lands were to be surrendered to the forces of either Reformation or Anglican design, since he (the Pope) had learned that the new Duke had been with the heathen Dutch and English it was decided that a statement was needed to stamp out any plans that these forces against Catholic dominance may have.

Kardynalny Dobry had raised a large force of mercenaries from the Holy Imperial Lands and these men now made thier presence known, sending the veteran Duża Firma Mieczyslaw Muszkieterowie and Korona Korpus to flight before their massed arms.

A show-down was now brewing between the Imperial forces and those that could be rapidly assembled by the Duke and his Ogólny

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Bitva Grozhof

Victory for the arms of Mieczyslaw!

Yet another victory was achieved for Mieczyslaw, this time along the Burtzenian frontier.

Skladowy Fabiszak, assigned the task of probing the Burtzenian mountain passes, discovered that a large Burtzenian force was maneuvering with a possible bid to force one pass before winter proper set in, so as to be able to command the action into next spring. Skladowy Fabiszak, had Pulkownik Koronowski and Ugodzic Wojskowski with him to command a small force of infantry and some cavalry.

Fabiszak, chose to hold the elite Trabki Huzarzy and a medium artillery battery into his personal command, and assigned Koronowski the infantry, consisting of Skrzypcowo Piechota, Flety Korpus and Korona Korpus along with a light gun and some mysliwi (skirmishers); Wojskowski was to command Wstrasowo Dragon.

The plan was to hold the town of Grozhof while at the same time driving off the Burtzenians, whom appeared ready to control the nearby bridge crossing of the Grozen river.

Fabiszak led into the area with his infantry, while the Burtzenians rode forward along the other main road at a trotting pace. At the last moments the Burtzenian Dragoons realized that they were in a race with the Flety Korpus! These raw recruits were dashing down the road and only just managed to reach the town before the somewhat overconfident dragoons. These elite horsemen calmly dismounted, and formed to deliver fire before advancing on the town. Meanwhile the second Burtzeniand dragoon force attempted a charge at a slow gallop, many troopers realizing that they were too far away to manage to hit the Skrzypcowo Piechota whom were rushing forward in a column.

The elite dragoons took fire from the town, then tried to return fire, though now their numbers were reduced by half! The other dragoons then completely baulked at charging into the now formed line of Skrzypcowo Piechota. The Skrzypcowo Piechota calmly marched forward then set bayonettes onto fully loaded muskets and waited.

Meanwhile the rest of the armies were arriving, all the Burtzenian infantry moved into a covering position in a massive brigade square in front of the bridge, with the river forming the 4th line of the massive box. Burtzenian high command was also now present and bringing artillery into position on the corners of the square.

Mieczyslaw high command had arrived and sent off artillery to the far left flank. The cavalry was still not arrived by the time the Burtzenian cavalry was spent.

The elite dragoons only fired one more time, as the Flety Korpus managed to scatter the remnants with another lethal series of volleys. At last the other dragoons had found their courage, only now so had Skrzypcowo Piechota; their charge only just reached the infantry lines having taken two-thirds casualties on the way in with a truly leathal first volley from the steady standing Skrzypcowo Piechota. The melee took down the remaining horsemen and sent the survivors scattering into the woods, twice the Burtzenian cavalry brigadier was exposed to fire during the engagement, but he managed to escape unscathed...

Once the Wstrasowo Dragon under Ugodzic Wojskowski had arrived they turned immediately to the right flank and began to climb the hill leading over towards the riverbank. Burtzenian forces were still assembling their great square and did little to counter the next Mieczyslaw moves.

These consisted of issuing new orders for the infantry, to wheel to the left in a great arc, with the right beyond the woods and the left to come about facing the grenadiers in the Burtzenian great square. Along the way also had come the medium battery, which was now swinging off the road and would form the right 'end' of this new line.

The line had just gotten into position when the Burtzenian re-enforcements had arrived, now with a fresh Uhlan force, these troopers were immediately seized upon by the same wild-eyed brigadier that had sent the dragoons to their doom earlier in the day. The Uhlans rode forward to be met by the Mieczyslaw light battery, now loaded with cannister, while running to form line behind them were the Flety Korpus, having evacuated the town and coming out to become the 'support' line behind Skrzypcowo Piechota and Korona Korpus.

These Uhlans fared no better than the dragoons before them, they ended up half their force before they could even complete forming a line to charge! In this shattered condition they refused to charge and permitted the Flety Korpus to form line behind the guns and so totally block any further advance on the Mieczyslaw left flank.

Meanwhile over on the right flank Skladowy Fabiszak was having his own command problems with Ugodzic Wojskowski. The Ugodzic was having trouble understanding the new HOLD orders he was being given, while this was being argued the troopers of Wstrasowo Dragon were creeping forward towards one side of the Burtzenian great square. At least the dragoons were doing a good job of probing the river banks for any potential fording spaces. While the Mysliwi nearby in the woods were performing absolute feats of marksmanship literally executing more than a quarter of the standing infantry force on that side of the great square. Finally Wojskowski halted the Dragon and waited for new orders. Once the fording space had been found the firing orders for the remaining infantry and all artillery batteries were set. That flank side facing the Wstrasowo Dragon was to be the target for all firing while the Wstrasowo Dragon made to cross the river at the ford at once and commence an attack from the other side of the river. Ugodzic Wojskowski miraculously managed to understand and ACT on these orders at once!

This development was too much for the Burtzenian commander, whom quit the field at that moment and ordered the brigadiers to take what action they saw fit.

With little or no cavalry left to command the Cavalry brigadier rode off at once, the Infantry commander did not choose to stay at the bridge and be surrounded and began an immediate withdrawl. The light battery was able to keep up with the infantry, though the battered troops near the flank facing the Wstrasowo Dragon chose to all flee shouting 'jeder Mann für sich selbst!', while the Burtzenian medium battery, having lost two-thirds of the crewers and the limber teams, simply put down their tools and surrendered.

The mountain passes near Grozhof are now firmly in Mieczyslaw hands and the Burtzenians will make no progress this winter.
Koronowski has been promoted to Ugodzic and those Mysliwi under his command are considered the best quality in all the Duchy.
Skrzypcowo Piechota for their steady action under fire have been awarded veteran status and pay.

This was a play-out of Table Top Teaser #3 (Advance-Guard Action) and I was using a mixture of figures, not the ones specific for The Duchy of Mieczyslaw.
We gamed on Bluebear Jeff's table, using his terrain and a mix of our minis, with a guest Burtzenian commander, whom had playtested Jeff's Tricorne Wars rules in their infancy a year or so ago.

Sunday, November 18, 2007


Duelling was the ultimate form of final "satisfaction" that a pair of disputing parties may get.

Here is a rather new twist on that ancient form.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Troops for the defence of Tipplebruder

Forces for the defence of Tipplebruder have long since marched out from Mieczyslaw, fetted by a parade for the elie Wojskowo Piechota after their great victory at Debnica.

Along with the elie Wojskowo Piechota rode the veteran Wstrasowo Dragon, commanded by Hit Man Kasper Ksawerić, to whom has been entrusted the letters of introduction for the file in order to permit their passage to the Tipplebruder lands.

Some have wanted to know of the livery of these troops, so herein is enclosed a diagram of their uniforms.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Bitva u Barva

While the troops of the Duchy of the North were busy in Saxe-Bearstein holdings, Stinz and Polkfurt forces of the Duchy of Mieczyslaw had invested Norden fortress at Barva.

Reeling from their losses in the south, the Duchy of the North was determined to return Barva to their control.

They launched a seige lasting some 56 days, going as far as the second parallel, when news of a relief column and field forces arrived. Hurredly the North commander Gen. Otto Fasjovik determined to intercept the relief supplies and defend his seigeworks.

Sent by the szlachta was Wiekszy Przewodnik szlachta Wierzchowski, with the task of re-supplying the defences and protecting his convoy were the Wstras Wzgórzowo Huzarzy and Luski Dragon along with the elite Duza Firma Mieczyslaw Muszkieterowie, and the veterans of the Owijac-Drewna Korpus and Wojskowo Piechota. Still invested and covering the postern gate of the fortress were the Wstrasowo Dragon and a raw untested Skrzypcowo Piechota. To command the cavalry was Kierownik szlachta Mosiadzowski and leading the foot and monitoring the waggon trains was Ugodzic Wstrasowski. Two field batteries were also included with a force of Mysliwi to ensure the safe arrival of these vital supplies.

These forces were deployed to the flanks, with the cavalry massed to the north east and lines of infantry near the town, the Duza Firma Mieczyslaw Muszkieterowie had their western flank refused to cover a possible arrival route of the Norden forces.

From the start Wiekszy Przewodnik szlachta Wierzchowski was determined to oversee the battle personally, to this end he also brought out the cavalry Wstrasowo Dragon and the medium field pieces were ordered to be manhandled in any way possible out to the west immediately.

By turn two the Norden forces started to arrive, it was a good thing that the Duza Firma Mieczyslaw Muszkieterowie had 'flank-refused' as it was in this sector that the first action of the Norden Cossacks was to fall...

The cossacks were at once commanded into a headlong charge into the steady ranks of the elite Duza Firma Mieczyslaw Muszkieterowie. Not a single one was to reach them for hand-to-hand though as they were all shot dead --> to a man before the levelled muskets of this elite unit.

On turn 4 the veteran Norden Snow Rangers appeared to the north of the Duza Firma Mieczyslaw Muszkieterowie (location #2) along with their light artillery in train. Even before this gun could unlimber they had taken casualties from the battery attached to the Duza Firma Mieczyslaw Muszkieterowie. This battery was to miss only one time all day!

The following moments saw this arriving battery of Norden gunners try and unlimber and set-up, while doing this they were blasted to smithereens by the lively fire of the north flank battery attached to the Duza Firma Mieczyslaw Muszkieterowie.

Facing the Snow Rangers directly were the Luski Dragon, a new unit of veteran riders, they were to be sorely tested this day...

With only these small forces to call upon, Gen. Otto Fasjovik was saddend to see the Cossacks flee, then commanded that the Snow Rangers press on and force an issue with the Luski Dragon before the Duza Firma Mieczyslaw Muszkieterowie could be commanded to turn again to flank...unfortunately they were still in range of the north battery, which now turned its lethal firepower onto their ranks...raking them several times before they could reach effective musket range of the Luski Dragon.

Upon reaching range, though long, they then delivered a truly lethal blast that put the gunners heads down for a moment, while dropping many of the Luski Dragon horses, sending the unit into momentary confusion.

The Duza Firma Mieczyslaw Muszkieterowie faced another rapid charge from a unit of dragoons called Krooks Crooks, these men did reach sword range as they were blasted by concentrated fire. Though badly mauled by the fire of Duza Firma Mieczyslaw Muszkieterowie, Krooks Crooks did manage to push back the Duza Firma Mieczyslaw Muszkieterowie and followed them up with a continued charge. The second contact was the last for Krooks Crooks as only one small portion (single figure stand) was routed out from the fight.

It was now turn 7 of the battle and more Norden forces had arrived, a trotter force called Torkels Dilemma had appeared on the north ridge over looking the north road into the fort. To the south a raw force called the Tundra battalion had mustered and was slowly advancing on the medium battery that had been pushed out from the fort.

Wierzchowski was in exactly the right place at exactly the right last the Mieczyslaw forces could start to dictate the direction of the battle! At once the Wstrasowo Dragon (from the fort) and Wstras Wzgórzowo Huzarzy were launched into headlong counter-charge of the advancing Torkels Dilemma, the Norden trotters were caught scattered and in single squadrons along the base and slope of the north hill! They were butchered.

Wstras Wzgórzowo Huzarzy tried to catch the last fleeing part of Torkels Dilemma only to come up short due to the blown horses and the slope of the hill...Wstrasowo Dragon was turned about with one last task to accomplish: attack the Tundra battalion from behind!

The final acts in the battle came in the south. While separated from their commanders on the north side of the convoy the elite Norden Snow Leopards were the last to arrive. They marched slowly while sending their attached artillery ahead to the crest of the ridge. This gun was (like its northern counterpart) blown to bits before it could fire off a shot while unlimbering. The rest of the Snow Leopards looked out on this vista ahead of them to the north.

The head of the convoy had reached the Y in the road and the heavy waggons had turned north with the first mule teams turning south.

At long last the Snow Rangers had shot to death and scattered the Luski Dragon, only now there was a Mieczyslaw Brigadier Ugodzic Wstrasowski on hand to command the artillery to swing around and fire in to the flank and rear of the Snow Rangers, who could at last see the convoy...moving steadily out of range!

The Luski Dragon paid the maximum price for their battle honors this day, sacrificing themselves so that the convoy could proceed unhindered and not fired upon by the Snow Rangers.

Final acts were done by Wstrasowo Dragon, racing south around the small wood, they came upon the Norden Tundra battalion, whom had faced withering fire from the fortress guns, then at nearly point blank range begun to fire back at the gunners with musketry...the gunners had died nearly to a man when the Wstrasowo Dragon had come upon them from behind and charged!

Seeing that the convoy would all arrive intact, Gen. Otto Fasjovik broke his seige and boarded ship for the north...leaving the Pomeranian lands to the tender mercies of The Duchy of Mieczyslaw

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Koronet Korpus at rest

Lew Wzgórzowo, Główny m adiutant Pułkownik Koronowski has returned from his journey to the west, he spoke with some of the szlachta, but the exact nature of the trip west and its outcome are unknown.

What is known and has been seen are preparations for the Wojskowo Piechota and parts of the Wstrasowo Dragon, whom are being assembled to march to the defence of Freistadt Tippelbruder. A parade is planned for thier march out from Mieczyslaw on the morrow.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Uropa enflamed.

1757 Uropa is moving closer and closer to that place where answers may only be found on the field of Mars.

This in response to an open letter written to all potentates of Urope.

This letter was read not long ago in the chambers of the szlachta, with the intent to encourage the current leadership to become involved in movements to the west along the coast of the Baltic. Clearly a place that would involve the Duchy should conflict actually arise, trade to the world would become restricted as the ports of Tragardland and the seas through those narrow channels would become closed to all traffic.

In usual fashion the szlachta were unwilling to make any serious moves, preferring to maintain a watch until events make a 'clearer' picture.

Also in usual fashion, the Korona Korpus are unwilling to let an opportunity pass by.
Lew Wzgórzowo, Główny m adiutant Pułkownik Koronowski has been dispatched to meet with Vovide Max of the Banat of Togaras.

The intent is to discover what the Korona Korpus might be able to do for the Banat, and what 'compensation' might be gotten for those so willing to serve on behalf of the Vovide.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Bitva Debnića

Victory for the arms of Mieczyslaw outside the Brass River valley.

Again the forces of the North have advanced towards the lands of Mieczyslaw, again led by Count Wrede of the North.

Duzy Uderzyc Klarnowo, still in command of the army of observation in the west again responded, this time the armies came to blows near Debnića. Klarnowo was a bit more cautious and allowed the offending army to cross into Mieczyslaw, until a battle site could be managed due to Wrede having an allied force...those of the Empress and her erstwhile ally Burtzenia! It took some time to confirm the size of the allied force and know of their commander, Brig. Prinz Robert Axe; an aggressive young man of lesser noble birth (at least three other older 'princes' exist in his clan...).

With clouds of skirmishers available the two armies lined up on the field. For some reason (unknown to Klarnowo) the North artillery was not able to make it to the field.

Early on, both armies spent some time digesting the gravity of their positions, permitting Cavalry under Kierownik szlachta Mosiadzowski to form up on the far right of the Mieczyslaw lines.

Inexplicably the North Cavalry rushed headlong into the center of the field, an area swept by all three batteries of guns available to Klarnowo. These guns signalled the start of the action by massacring half of the advancing horse regiments and wounding the other...

The North Dragoons pressed on to their target...Korona Korpus, recently fetted for Saint Argard and now bolstered by two companies of Grenadiers! The dragoons fired their pistols, to no effect. Then charged...

Into the freshly loaded and ready Korona Korpus, whom fired a truly leathal blast from their muskets...killing all of the charging dragoons to a man, taking their colours and capturing Brigadier Torke Fisk after he had fallen from his wounded horse!

Over on the right, two brigades of North Infantry had first to do battle with a heavy dense woods, then more scrub on their way towards clouds of the Janowski Mysliwi, whom were to perform a minor miracle in holding off more than twice their numbers in other skirmishers and 8 times as many formed battalions behind them at the barrier of the woods!

Once breaking out along the right flank the Wojskowo Klusak were again shot to pieces while progressively falling back...all the while holding up the North advance more and more...

Back over on the left wing the Burtzenians made a critical error! Their skirmishers had been shot-up and told to hold off the Mieczyslaw Mysliwi, while the lead formation of infantry turned to the far flank and marched to take command of the nearby hill (the destination of the Burtzenians artillery - as ordered), the rear formation of Burtzenians turn to face the center and marched out in column, presumably to begin forming a wide line formation.

Into this brigade changing formation CHARGED the Mieczyslaw Mysliwi and a column of the Wojskowo Piechota. While the Wojskowo Piechota did not quite reach their target (1/2" out!!!) the Mysliwi were more than up to the task of sending the Burtzenians skirmishers fleeing right through the packed ranks of massed Burtzenians! Then following up that charge directly into the, now turned, flank of the column of infantry that had just turned to the flank and began marching up the hill!

The butchery that this chaos caused was immense, for it took some time to get their infantry back into order, and while the chaos ensued the Burtzenians artillery was forced back off the hill by the Mysliwi and the Wojskowo Piechota had time to form a firing line.

Inexplicably again the Burtzenians chose to charge now.

They did not reach either the Wojskowo Piechota or the Mieczyslaw artillery moving up to begin really lethal point blank firing...

The Wojskowo Piechota did not miss their chance and blasted fully one-third of the charging Burtzenians into oblivion, this action broke the resolve of the Burtzenian Infantry which was now running headlong towards the rear.

The column that had tried to charge, balked and was left in confusion, when the Mieczyslaw artillery now fired a volley of grapeshot and at the same time Korona Korpus advanced and fired at them as well. They lost fully one-quarter of their strength in the single moment, this shattered their morale and also sent them running!

It was at this moment that the Mieczyslaw Cavalry, now massed near the center rear, was unleashed, initially only the Wiesniak Ulans charged, but they were soon followed by Trabki Huzarzy and Mosiadz Cuirassiers under the command of Uderzyc Janowski. Once again the Ulans had something to prove and they did it by facing two volleys from the North medium battery then charged into the battery slaughtering the gunners to a man and pressing onwards, very nearly reaching the flank of Wrede's escourting cavalry force!

In a moment the battle had deteriorated into a re-enactment of Austerlitz, with the North infantry bogged down on the right, now finally having eliminated the Mieczyslaw Janowski Mysliwi, whom had held them off for better than half of the battle! In the center of the North lines there was only Mieczyslaw cavalry, with two untouched formations just preparing to hit the flank and rear of the far end of the North Infantry (Pete's newly finished unit - just before it was blasted to bits by Zaklad Wstrasowo Muszkieterowie and Mieczyslaw artillery).

Amazingly Ugodzic Wojskowski decided that now was the time to start the withdrawl! He interpreted his orders in an unexpected, yet beneficial way. All day he steadfastly refused to budge from the HOLD order he started with, then at the moment of testing from the North infantry, he chose to start a withdrawl, an action that in most situations would be insane, yet here it was of some benefit as now there would be more room to let the cavalry race through and there would be an incentive for the North infantry to continue to press their attack and leave their rear entirely unprotected from the advancing Trabki Huzarzy and Mosiadz Cuirassiers.

The final acts on the left were an amazing feat of leadership, where three battalions of infantry on the verge of total collapse and flight from the field were man-handled back into a ragged semblance of a line(Pete rolled three '1's in a row!)...enough of a line to stagger the Veterans of Korona Korpus and soon to be Veteran Wojskowo Piechota, as both refused to charge into the battered Burtzenians! (I rolled two '6's in a row)

Withdrawing in some confusion from the field Wrede would have to lick his wounds and re-think his tactics.

Prinz Robert Axe of Burtzenia would report back to the courts of the Empress that the arms of the Duchy of the North are not as well prepared as previously suspected and that now Mieczyslaw knew that Burtzenia had become a foe again!

Feted on the field with new battle honours were the command of Pulkownik Koronowski: Korona Korpus and Wojskowo Piechota along with the amazing, though badly wounded Janowski Mysliwi!

Sunday, July 1, 2007

Battle Honors

New Battle Honors are awarded to:

Duża Firma Mieczyslaw Muszkieterowie
Zakład Wstrąsowo Muszkieterowie
Korona Korpus

For the first Battle of Saint Argard.

If field reports are to be believed, the Zakład Wstrąsowo Muszkieterowie have also been upgraded to Elite status!

Bitva St. Argard

Victory for the arms of Mieczyslaw in Norden Pomerania.

An army of Duchy of the North troops led by Count Major General Sturri Pal Wrede advanced towards The Duchy of Mieczyslaw, assembling and moving with the intent to carry the fight into the Brass River Valley.

Duzy Uderzyc Klarnowo responded with the western army of observation and met the North forces in the region of Saint Argard.

Klarnowo, aggresive by nature, deployed out the forward infantry under Ugodzić Wojskowski, with orders to hold or delay any approaching force. To his far right went Kierownik szlachta Mosiądzowski with a collection of raw cavalry. The center left was the Koronet Korpus and elite Muszkieterowie under Pułkownik Koronowski. The far left and hammer-blow force of cavalry was under the able command of Uderzyć Janowski.

Wrede seemed to have difficulty in making decisions right from the outset of the battle. His infantry formations were all pushed together in his center left and the available cavalry was all concentrated on the right and center right.

The early portion of the battle also saw Wrede left with no room to maneuver in his escorting cavalry force and the medium battery that he had available. Also, for some inexplicable reason the infantry force in the center was determined to probe constantly with masses of skirmishing infantry, effectively blocking his active medium and light batteries - to the constant delight of the Mieczyslaw formations.

After a short pause, for orders interpretations, the Koronet Korpus and elite Muszkieterowie under Pułkownik Koronowski began a rapid advance, they were met by Dragoons and Trotters (including an elite formation under Brig. Halvar Odegarvik).

The real fighting was there between the infantry of Pułkownik Koronowski, and four formations of North Cavalry. By turn 4 two of them were gone and the Mieczyslaw horse was on the loose, threatening to encircle the entire right wing of the North troops. On turn 5 Odegarvik threw in his last elite cavalry force and watched them vanish in clouds of musket powder smoke, now surrounded by skirmishers on two sides, with the Elite: Duża Firma Mieczyslaw Muszkieterowie to his front and Elite: Mosiądz Huzarzy sweeping in to close him entirely in a ring of Mieczyslaw arms he wisely accepted the offer from Pułkownik Koronowski to surrender.

This action was not lost on Wrede, whom also accepted the offer of amnesty and the general withdrawl was on. Only the Wieśniak Ułan had something to prove and they did so by totally massacring the clouds of skirmishing infantry that had so ably blocked thier own artillery for most of the day.

Sadly for the arms of the Duchy of the North this formation of escourting heavy horse and a medium gun, they were unable to find their way onto the battlefield until the general withdrawl was in progress...