Wednesday, 25 August 2021

Rebels and Patriots: First Clash at Big Jim's Field

Last week saw the return of George to BIG who had been even busier on the painting front during 'Lockdown II' than he had been in 'Lockdown I' having expanded his British AWI units into 24 figure regiments all now with eye-catching standards...

Splitting his regiments into battalion groups of 12 men, we settled on playing an 85 point Rebels and Patriots game, the scenario loosely based on the First Clash at Laments Ridge from the book, using a hay cart in lieu of a ridge.

The British advance was led by the 23rd Foot (Royal Welsh Fuzileers) supported by the 74th (Highland) Foot and a unit of British Legion dragoons...

The American forces comprised of a mix of Continental and Militia forces spread themselves in an attempt to outflank and envelope the advancing British.

The British 1st Battalion Light Infantry advanced towards the American right flank and opened fire...

Killing one of Kirwood's Lights who were attempting to reach cover of some woods to skirmish the advancing British from.

Meanwhile the 3rd Continental Light Dragoons positioned themselves on the American right, poised to take advantage of any weakness on the British left.

Initially George's dice rolling left something to be desired with a number of unites refusing orders to activate and the 2nd Battalion Light Infantry rolling a dreaded 'double one' which fortunately for George only saw his commander lose one point of honour.

As the British advanced towards them the 1st Continental Artillery took aim at the 23rd Welsh.

Whilst the 2nd Maryland supported by a unit of Virginia militia advanced on the British right flank.

As the British marched forward into range the Continental Artillery opened fire!

Killing two of the 23rd, who ignored the loss in their morale check.

Despite the losses the British reached the centre of the battlefield...

But this brought the 17th Foot in range of the North Carolina Militia on the American right whose volleys killed four redcoats, which inflicted a Disorder marker on one unit and two on the other forcing it to fall back Broken.

On the British Left one unit of British Legion foot sprang into action...

Firing at the advancing 2nd Maryland, killing two and inflicting a Disorder marker on them (a Disorder marker reduces the capabilities of a unit unless it is removed on a Morale Test).

A blast of musket fire from the 23rd Foot was aimed at the Continental Artillery killing two of the crew and inflicting two Disorder markers (one now permanent as the unit was half strength). The artillery was now Broken and would need to Rally if it was not to keep retreating or Rout.

On the American right one group of Kirkwood's Lights found itself in a similar position to the Artillery having taken more losses from the British Lights it was Broken and forced back with a permanent Disorder marker.

As the British centre moved into short range the 1st Virginia opened fire on the advancing 23rd Foot...

Both groups of the Welch took casualties and a Disorder marker each.

Unfortunately for the Americans the Broken unit of Kirkwood's Lights failed it's Rally roll by 2 or less and Routed. This resulted in the other unit of Kirkwood's and the 3rd Continental Light Dragoons to test for Morale which they both failed and took Disorder markers!

However, despite the Continental Artillery taking another casualty the sole survivor stood firm and continued to engage the advancing British at half-effect.

At this stage of the battle things were starting to look bad for the British whose centre had taken many casualties, George moving the 74th up to reinforce it.

The 17th Foot were struggling against the unusually effect musket fire of the North Carolina Militia with one group falling back into cover and the other still trying to advance despite being under half strength with a permanent Disorder marker now.

However the Gods of War(gaming) decided to smile on George. Having taken six casualties from the British Legion to their front the 2nd Maryland managed to take two Disorder markers in their Morale test after some extremely unimpressive dice rolling by myself followed up next turn by a badly failed Rally test which saw the Marylanders Rout and flee the battlefield!

Fortunately this did not effect the nearby Lee's Legion who had been plugging away at the advancing 2nd Battalion of Lights who themselves decided enough was enough and charged the superior American unit!

Despite taking two casualties and now carrying a permanent Disorder marker the British won the combat and forced the American Light troops back!

The Legion decided to strike back and next turn charged back into melee against the Disordered British (now fighting at half effect).

However despite rolling half as many dice as their opponents, the British managed to kill as many of the enemy as troops they lost. The British Morale roll saw them take an additional Disorder maker making them Broken. Unfortunately for Lee's Legion my dice rolling continued to be rubbish and despite only taking two casualties I rolled 2 or less and they took two Disorder makers and themselves also became Broken!

My dice rolling continued its bad form as the weakened British units in the centre managed to cause the odd casualties on my 1st Maryland and 1st Virginia Continentals, the Marylanders taking a Disorder marker in a failed Morale test.

Sensing the tables were turning George eventually managed to persuade the (somewhat reticent) 74th Foot to advance forward in the Disordered Americans.

It was now the turn of my Kirkwood's Lights to roll a 'double one' and they decided to Charge out of cover at the nearest enemy of unit(!), which of course they came up short in doing!

With the skirmishers exposed in the middle of the battlefield I decided to move up the Continental Dragoons in support.

George attempted to Charge Kirwood's Lights but they managed to Evade killing two of the redcoats as they fell back skirmishing.

Unfortunately this falling back left the 3rd Continental Dragoons somewhat exposed and a volley of fire from a unit of British Legion infantry (who had refused most of their orders all evening) killed four of the American horsemen, the survivors becoming Broken after a failed Morale test.

Things just kept getting worse for the Americans as Lee's Legion failed its Rally test by 2 or less and Routed off the battlefield.

Whilst on the British left flank a group of skirmishers opened fire on the Virginian Militia...

Who taking two Disorder markers in their Morale test became Broken - clearly the Gods of War(gaming) were not favouring me now!

And things were to soon get worse as the nearby British Legion foot who had already seen off the 2nd Maryland opened fire...

Killing a third militia man the Morale test for which resulted in a third Disorder marker and the Virginia Militia routing off the table!

My bad luck was to continue as one unit of the 74th opened fire on the 1st Maryland Continental line...

Who already with one Disorder marker took a second as casualties took it to 50% and then a third when they failed their Morale test. Another unit Routed!

And then in almost identical circumstanced the Disordered 1st Virginia suffered six casualties from one incredibly accurate volley of British fire from the 74th, giving them a second Disorder marker, and upon failing their Morale test a third which saw them rout along with the force commander! At this point I conceded victory to George!

Well that was an amazing collapse by my Americans following a whole series of really poor dice rolling on Morale checks! At one point the number of casualties inflicted on the British did seem to indicate that victory would fall to the Rebels but the Gods of War(gaming) had other ideas!

It was good to dust off Rebels and Patriots (playing with almost four times the suggested army size) after playing Sharp Practice almost exclusively this year and it provides a different game with the same miniatures, although the experience of defeat was strangely the same! :D


  1. That's a lovely looking game...cracking figures!

  2. Yes, a treat visually and a good story too.

  3. Lovely armies, this post has given me some inspiration as to how I want my AWI to look and be based - thanks.

  4. Beautiful figures and what an amazing looking game. Thanks for sharing that, really enjoyed it.