I finally decided to carry out the 1809 Bavaria Napoleonic campaign in solo mode, with the help of Cyberboard software, a simple but reliable software that doesn\’t require much time to invest in.Why Bavaria 1809 campaign? Was the first serious attempt for the Austrian empire to try to crush Napoleon after the defeat of 1805, and saw a series of interesting battles like Aspern-Essling, Eckmühl or finally, Wagram, and the first defeat of the Corsican as French emperor in Aspern. The armies were similar in numbers and had various phases: first an Austrian offensive, and Napoleon through the defensive to offensive.
Over the years, I\’ve tried it maps with Berthier software (square based grid), with hexagon boards, with offset squares, but there was always an impediment or another to complete their final design, or maybe it was my lack of consistency. I chose finally a Point-to-Point map (drew with Hexdraw software), because Napoleonic armies marched basically on roads and I think that PtP reflects much better those historic movements. Finally, instead of the classic square counters, flags as units, perhaps it reflects more the atmosphere with those old beautifully drawn Napoleonic maps.
This is a simple mini-campaign that can be played as a quick board game or by solving battles or skirmishes with miniature figures on wargames. The game attempts to simulate the first part of the 1809 campaign between the Austrian and French armies that took place on Bavarian lands, with a player manoeuvring French troops and Austrian actions being automated. The game begins with the Austrian invasion at various points from the east and a single French army corps, the VII, roughly at the centre of the board.
The map of the Point-to-Point campaign is the playing field, showing the area between the populations of Ulm and Passau, about 250 kilometres from West to East, and from Nuremberg to Munich, about 145 kilometres from North to South. The distance between nodes is about 10 kilometres. The main accidents, mountains, rivers and their various tributaries are defined. There are two strong cities that are Ulm and Regensburg. The latter is one of the key objectives of the campaign: the old Regina Castra, established on a site that, as Goethe put it, \»was destined to attract a city.\» It became the capital of the Dukes of Bavaria in 530 d. C. The Imperial Diet met there from 1663 until its dissolution in 1806.
The map is marked with geographic locations and accidents, all located on points also called nodes. French and Austrian counters usually represent divisions grouped in army corps. Austrian decoys are deployed entering Bavarian territory, at different points. We also have a series of event cards that condition the development of the campaign on either side. Decoys and regular units are represented by flags and Corps commanders move with artillery reserve in all cases. About 10 D6 dices to play, more or less.
The player screen on Cyberboard: as usual, Game Turns, reinforcements (only French) the weather and Victory points (Moral factor don\’t count on the final version), and a pile of event cards.
People who had played \»Les Marechaux\» series from Vae Victis, will know this OOB format of Davout\’s 3rd French Corps. Both OOB, Austrian and French, are in the same way, Divisions are formed by force points (PF), each representing 1,000 infantry, 500 horsemen or 1 artillery battery. Every Division, Commander in Chief, artillery reserve and supply wagons are represented by a flag on the board, with their National flag and commander.
The Austrians always move first, until Napoleon\’s presence on the board, a moment from which the French will always move first. Each turn represents one day, for a total of 10 campaign turns. On the French side, only the Seventh Bavarian-French Corps of Marshal Lefevbre can place its units within a triangle delimited by the populations of Landshut (II18), Regensburg (HH9) and Donauworth (O14).
Austrian forces (decoys) enter the board at various points: with a 1D6 pull, the entry point is checked, and with a second 1D6 pull the forward points to the starting point, in the following order, from south to north:
1. Burghausen (RR25); 2 Braunau (U23); 3. Schärding (AAA19); 4. Passau (AAA16); 5. Rötz (NN3); 6. Naaburg (II0).
Turn 3. The red Austrian decoys try to conquer Regensburg (north of blue Bavarian units). As in reality, Bavarian light blue forces try to wait French allies and defend the Isar river bridges. The decoys movements are regulated by a 1D6 (initially \»6\» was a \»0\», but it was bad for the fluency of the game, and finally \»6\» and \»1\» are translated to a minimum of \»2\» points)
Turn 4. The Austrian decoy \»J\» with Wrede Bavarian division. Finally, no troops representing this decoy, so it\’s retired from the board (really, the screen).
Rulebook of Bavaria 1809 campaign, based on Nic Birt\’s Agincourt Campaign, published in Lone Warrior #143, and a Napoleonic campaign test from General Nuisance\’s website. The player controls French troops and Allies, with automated movements for Austrian troops (regular troops and decoys). The mechanics of the battles, based on Altar of Freedom Campaigns from Greg Wagman and the Marshals series from Vae Victis magazine. As you see a \»mix\» of rulebooks, with 9 pages of homemade rules, in Spanish. If you are interested, please e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Over the years, I\’ve tried with Berthier software, with hexagon boards, but there was always an impediment or another to complete their design, or maybe it was a lack of consistency. Over the years, I\’ve tried with Berthier software, with hexagon boards, but there was always an impediment or another to complete their design, or maybe it was a lack of consistency.