Hitman Czcibor led his forces to the headwaters of the Brass River.
The Konrad Korpus was known to be advancing in this area, Ogólny Ludwik had dispatched his best troops to counter this advance, so as to gain time to finish training the new levvies.
The two forces met near the small town of Wojslawice along the broad road which is little more than a dry flat space along the swampy headwaters.
The Loyalist force centered their foot on the road while the horse was deployed to the right, ready to charge towards any guns deployed by the Absolutists, should they try to defend the road area.
The Absolutists chose to center their deployment on a hillock overlooking the marshy, swampy ground on the north side of the road.
Loyalists stand ready to slowly advance, permitting time for their horse to re-deploy to face the Absolutists forces and to have much needed re-enforcements arrive.
The Absolutists started with their grand ordinnance standing ready to fire, sweeping the area of the wet, marshy ground.
(the gun is from my own collection and matched up well with the troops from Jeff's collection, by Blood Axe minis painted by a gamer known to Jeff)
The early battle moves consisted of gaining position on one another as the two armies had not started 'lined-up'.
During these manuevers, the Absolutists were re-enforced by more foot and ordinnance.
The battle scene around turn 7 while the forces were still positioning...
(this image is a 'panoramic' view and could be rather large, so if you clik it allow a few seconds for the image to load; I also have this image as a self-extracting program that permits you to 'see it' as though you were standing on the table. If you want this image just send me an e-mail and I will forward it to you.)
There were a few more moves (including an amazing turn 5 where the 'turn' ended on the first card 'turned' over!), until the Loyalist horse were in re-deployment, when the two extra squadrons of lancers arrive to re-enforce the massive cavalry rush moving north to the Loyalist left wing...
Only a short while later the rest of the Absolutist forces had arrived, thier extra pistols horsemen. The entire Absolutist line then became more animated, with all three guns coming into action, raking great holes in the Loyalist lines, yet not destroying any units.
The Loyalists formed a pike square to defend their extreme right flank against the marauding Absolutist horse nearby...
Loyalist ordinnace finally started to have an effect when some Absolutist foot were sent running away due to losses to morale.
Then there followed two consecutive periods of extreme activity from both armies (we drew through ALL the cards of the entire deck - with the turn end card at the last for both turns 10 and 11)
Through this time, the Absolutists and Loyalists exchanged fire, though not always with fully loaded volleys.
Then a great rainstorm raged over the valley, cutting off all firelock and cannon fire...sadly the Absolutist commander took no heed of the weather and called for the cannon to fire many times!
(Jeff forgot the event card had been pulled and got very excited when the opportunity to fire artillery came up soon after!)
The Abolutists carried full fire from their three guns, though in the end it was the last shot for one of the guns, as the gun Captain collapsed due to inebriation from overindulgence the night before.
(we had Pete there drawing the cards by this point and he drew the second of three 'event' cards, this one came up "100 bottles of beer on the wall...")
The Loyalists had managed to come out better than their opponents in a couple of fire exchanges (we played using a 'house rule' for Victory Without Quarter that allowed any unit fired upon to return fire) then the Absolutist support cavalry charged into the weakened line. They loyalists fled from the horse, but the pike square held firm.
Then when the Absolutist cause seemed most dire, the entire line was rejuvinated by a series of successful rallies. Including a foot unit that was twice on the verge of collapse, which was now turned about and charging back into the swampy morass determined to break into at least the dry ground of the road.
Just before the Loyalist lines faltered the final re-enforcement arrived, a force of foot with cannon.
Jeff surveys the scene of battle, looking for that opening where victory could be found...
At this point the Loyalist horse on the far left of the line had finally deployed into battle formations. The massed charges had begun.
While in the center a desperate collection of badly wounded men had cobbled together to hold the line long enough for the arriving Loyalist foot to come up...
During the advance of the Absolutists their Ordinance had been left behind to continue to fire from a hillock. However the Loyalist horse was now too close to the Absolutist line to permit the safe firing of the guns.
(gun from the St Valentine's Seige Train by MurdocK, crew from Jeff's collection of Blood Axe minis)
The ragged lines were not restricted to the Loyalist side only, as this formation of Absolutist foot was also reduced and tired from many volleys fired and taken.
The massed charges of the Loyalist horse now took their toll. All of the Absolutist horse was either dead or routed from the field. The Absolutist one main battery was in danger of becoming surrounded by Loyalist horse, given the circumstances the Absolutist command was ordering a withdrawl even as the Loyalist horse were preparing to bear down on them again.
Hitman Czcibor was to be the victory this day, though not without casualties of his own...some that the Loyalist cause could ill afford.
The war was not won that day either, as "Duke" Konrad, enraged with the loss of the advance horse was not willing to surrender his crown so easily. He and the Kardynalny would take the main body of their Korpus via a more easterly pass, deeper into Owijać-Drewna territory and along more covered roads into the north lands above Mieczyslaw, where they would seek a way to strike at Duke Jerzy yet again...
A final 'panoramic' view of the battlefield from behind the Loyalist positions.
(again this view is available as a 'self-extracting' program with zoom and other functions which give a better view of the field in a 'stereoscopic' type of view, simply email me with your request and an email to send the image to and I will get you a copy)