Nov 10, 2011

A Jackewline War of Independence battle in Cossacks

Cossacks- editor mode. The centre of the map is a small lake, there are hills to SW and NE. 

Dorrosean - 1 Guard Regiment, 6 Line Regiments (1 Chasseur, 1 Line, 1 Grenadier battalion), 2 Artillery Battalions, 4 Militia Battalions, 3 Dragoon Regiments, 1 Cuirassier Regiment (cavalry with 2 battalions), 1 Hussar Regiment
Jackewline - 
Red clans - 1 Rgt. of Line Fusiliers, 1 Battalion of Sappers, 1 Battalion of Phoenix-Winged Cavalry
Yellow clans - 1 Rgt + 2 Battalions (reserve) Line Grenadiers, 1 Rgt. Line Fusiliers
Green clans - 1 Battalion of Skirmishers (operating in platoons of 10), 4 Battalions of Fusiliers (2 reserve), 2 Flags of the Fists of Mackowskill (volunteer troops), 1 Battalion of Guard Heavy Cavalry
Blue clans - 1 Rgt. of Mounted Chasseurs, 1 Rgt. of Light Infantry (+ 1 Battalion reserve), 3 batteries of Field Guns, 1 battery of Howitzers divided through the frontline, 1 Rgt. of Cuirassiers (2 battalions), 1 Rgt. of Dragoons (3 battalions)

Frickland (on Jackewline side): 1 Rgt. of Fusiliers, 1 Battalion of FNG Grenadiers

The setup:
Jackewline forces chose the field to fight, arriving earlier and forming their lines. The left flank was guarded by the Fricklander and 2 battalions of Green infantry, plus a gun battery. There still was a gap in lines towards the lake, so one battalion of Dragoons were put there on guard. The units were ordered to form lines and stand ground.
In the centre, behind the lake, the Blue light cavalry and the Phoenix-Winged were set and awaited their chance to charge. 

Close to the banks of the lakes on the NE side, a battalion of Red fusiliers and sappers stood, with the heavy cavalry and Dragoons behind them.Eastwards, first the Red fusiliers and a frontline battalion of Yellow grenadiers took their stand, further came the line of Yellow fusiliers, also protected by groups of grenadiers. Platoons of skirmishers crossed the lines to find the most suitable firing positions. The easternmost part of the Jackewline army were the Blue light infantry regiment, which took a hill as their stationing place, and one battalion formed square at the highest point.

The Dorroseani arrived later. 4 of 6 line regiments were sent against the Jackewline left flank with 1 battery, while the others marched against the center and right. 
The plan was to outflank and rout the left flank, thus forcing the Jackewline to remove their reserves behind their main line, and making a chance to the Guard, Militia and Line regiments to form columns and charge at a break point. Since, the foot regiments formed a huge column, while the cavalry guarded their flanks.

The first fight of the day began with the Dorroseani charging the Jackewline left from three directions: seven battalions launched an attack to the far west of the mountain, where the Fricklander stood, and the other five attacking the Dragoons and the Greens/Fricklander between the mountain and the lake, both of which eventually failed despite their hard efforts. 

The Dorroseani retreated with the remainings of their troops and formed two squares behind a grove, preparing for the Jackewline counterattack. First, after artillery fire, the foot battalions attacked, and failed, losing almost their full crew in the grapeshots of enemy artillery.

The staff did not intend to risk their reserves, so the whole mounted chasseur regiment prepared for a charge, altogether with the Red heavies.

Finally, the enemy square broke (the 2 squares were earlier, during the infantry attack, were reduced to one of two ragged battalions), but the guns took their toll again, and almost the whole of the Phoenix-Winged were destroyed. 

The Dorroseani still had a chance to win if launched a decisive attack: they began with the far left of their line, sending their Hussars against the Blue lines.

The Blue light infantry held and repulsed the attack, routing the Hussars.

The enemy found a weak point where the Red and Yellow lines were separated, and began bombarding it.

The Jackewline moved more groups to the threatened area, making their reserves prepare to the massive enemy charge.

With cannons still firing, the enemy column which apparently lost its right guard (as Blue dragoons were engaging it together with the Green Guard Cavalry) started the attack.

The column was stopped with heavy musket fire and forced to a standing skirmish. The troops' numbers quickly melted.

Although having terrible losses, the Reds and Yellows stood and held their positions since the reserves launched a counter-attack. This was the most chaotic moment of the battle as neither of the opposing forces knew where to go and what to do exactly: heavy skirmish came on.

The Dorroseani Dragoons were scattered and slaughtered, and soon the infantry lines broke and the Jackewlinese began the chase: a very few could escape. The gun batteries were also captured.

Conclusion: the Dorroseani wasted their forces while attempting to frontally charge the Jackewline lines: with more agile tactics they could have separated and/or routed more enemy troops, achieving a real breaking point; however the Jackewline counter-attacks on the left of their lines against the enemy columns took most of their soldiers' lives, and the overall casualty was almost half of their army presenting at the battle. It's mostly because, not like in Napoleonic Wars or American Conquest, soldiers don't run when their units are being decimated. 

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