Sunday, July 14, 2013
Maurice - Austrians v Prussians
After a few weeks of going along to the club and joining in with other peoples' games, I felt I should bring along something of my own to contribute. The perfect chance came along with a decision to play a game of 'Maurice' for the Seven Years' War. The 'Maurice' rules are by Sam Mustafa, and one of his earlier rulesets was 'Might and Reason' - which used to be my old favourite! We gave it a go one week to try out, and the following week I offered to bring along my 15mm Prussian & Austrian figures for a replay.
The results are in the photo above! Unfortunately I was only able to take one or two pics on my mobile, as you tend to get caught up in the game with other folk there at the club. I went the Prussians, attacking an Austrian line spread out across a low hilly region. I had intended to flank the line with some fancy marching, but sadly it was not to be - the Austrians played a surprise card (appropriately called "That's not on the map!") which let them place an unexpected piece of terrain - the large marsh you can see on the left of the above photo! My plan derailed by this, I switched quickly to screening both flanks and simply blasting through his centre - the clash of the two infantry lines can be seen above.
Thanks to some 'national characteristic' cards I could count on the Prussian infantry having an advantage over their foes in a one-on-one fight, but somehow the cards never quite panned out that way. Numerous 'upset' cards that reduced fire effectiveness or prevented firing just seemed to keep on turning up. Also, many units that were wavering pulled off some spectacular rallies to keep the fight going. In Maurice you play cards to keep units active, and the fighting in the centre was so intensive that both sides were forced to keep on playing cards turn after turn to prevent a collapse, as opposed to bringing in other units on the flanks into play.
The end result was a scrappy draw, with a possible nominal win going to the Prussians - or whatever was left of them - as their advantages finally tipped the battle for the centre their way. Not a particularly elegant one, however - just a heads-down victory by battering away headlong at the enemy, and winning through the infantry training as opposed to leadership! ;-)
Two after-effects of the game are that there is now talk of possibly doing a campaign of games, using the Maurice system for linking them together. Not sure if there's enough people for it, plus of course we haven't necessarily all got collections in the same scale, but the notion is appealing. The second is the realisation for me, which would have slipped past me without somebody mentioning it, that a new Maurice-style game for the ACW is about to come out from Sam Mustafa! Having just finished up painting my two armies for ACW, and being quite taken with the Maurice-like card system, I'm actually eager to get the rules and see about getting my figures organised for using with the upcoming new rules.