Monday, September 5, 2016

Battle of Quatre Bras in 6mm - Part 1, The Setup

Refight of the Battle of Quatre Bras using Command & Colors Napoleonic Rules. Figures from Baccus 6mm range, hex terrain from Kallistra, houses from TBM, trees by Timecast.

Details of the scenario can be found here.

Napoleon Bonaparte’s surprise march placed his army squarely between Blucher’s Prussians at Ligny and Wellington’s Anglo-Allied army assembling around Brussels. Napoleon concentrated most of his strength against Blucher, but ordered Ney and the II Corps to capture the vital crossroads of Quatre Bras to deny Wellington the chance to reinforce Blucher. Ney procrastinated and his attack did not get underway until two in the afternoon. The delay allowed Wellington to bring fresh allied troops to support the Dutch-Belgians and the Nassau Brigade that were thinly deployed south of the crossroads.

The initial French advance was greeted with musket volleys, but the outnumbered Allied troops were forced back. The Allied units in the wood, however, managed to hold. Facing three infantry divisions and a cavalry brigade, the Allied situation was fast becoming desperate, but additional troops kept arriving and Wellington, now in command, directed them to key positions on the battlefield.

Ney realized that the numerical balance was shifting in favor of the Anglo-Allies and that he could only capture and hold Quatre Bras by a desperate move. He ordered General Kellermann to lead his cuirassier brigades forward and break through Wellington’s line. The cuirassiers managed to reach the crossroads, but were driven back by close range artillery and musket fire. The arrival of the British Guards Division late in the day gave Wellington sufficient strength to launch a counter-attack that forced the French to give up all of their hard fought territorial gains.

The Battlefield from the West.

The Battlefield from the South.
The Game Layout

Let Battle Commence
The Allied Right Flank
The Allied Centre

The Allied Left Flank
The French Right Flank
The French Centre
The French Left Flank
Off Table - British reinforcements

Off Table - French reinforcements
Next post: Part 2, The Battle


  1. All lovely stuff. How does C&C handle reinforcements - or are you house ruling?

    1. IIRC the only official scenario to have reinforcements is 509 Lindenau (16 October 1813). The reinforcements are random determined by dice throw.

      On there are other scenarios with reinforcements.

      There is no one method to handle reinforcements, it is scenario specific!

  2. A lovely, neat-looking battlefield, thanks for posting.

  3. Keith, I presume you needed to purchase a LOT of Kallistra single hexes to use your method for the rivers since using upside down single hexes for those means you must need to make up the remaining hexes of each six-hex unit? What sort of numbers do you have?

    1. I have one boxed-set (21 x 6-hex boards) and two 10-packs of single hexes. So far this has been enough to do all the normal scenarios we have tried.

      Note that I "cheated" with this Quatre Bras scenario and made the board 10 hexes wide instead of 9, and we just ignored the extra hex row. You can just see the tenth row in some of the pictures.

      But yes you do need to be a little creative with hex placement, but I think it's worth the trouble to get the look with rivers (and lakes in Ancients) which are below and not above ground level.

      For Waterloo which is an "epic" scenario, we used some of my friends hexes.

  4. Have you thought about adding the roads (Quatre Bras)? Your setup looks great!

  5. Hi Captain, thanks for the comment. You don't need roads in Command & Colors, the have no terrain effect. We have thought about using them just to make the battlefield look even more realistic. But here we were unsure whether they should follow the hex layout or be staight regardless of hexes. Still no decision there :)