Tuesday 2 May 2017

Battle of Klystatzy/Jakovovo 1812 refight in 6 mm

Its been some time since I posted a battle report.

So here it is  and also Mike's new Kallistra terrain.

Battle of Klystatzy/Jakovovo 1812 refight in 6 mm 

scenario link http://napoleonicscenarios.weebly.com/uploads/2/3/7/7/2377799/klyastitzy_1812.pdf

Hi guys
After a long break necessitated by structural works at the clubhouse we have returned to the table with a small 1812 encounter.  The battle of Klyastitzy in July 1812 saw the French 2nd Corps being surprised by Wittgenstein's Russian 1st Corps whilst on the way to St Petersburg. The Russians had been withdrawing for weeks but suddenly turned on the French, taking them completely by surprise and even though the Russians were numerically inferior they still managed to block the French advance and carry the day.
We used the forced gaming break to dissect the Age of Eagles ruleset since we had encountered several issues with these rules throughout the years and decided to modify and mould them more to our liking. Maybe the most radical change was the introduction of zones of control and an overhaul of the firing system. We conducted several playtests - and indeed do not consider the process complete by any means - but we feel that we are on the right track, moulding what we think is a more sensible and realistic ruleset.
But back to the game. I have tried to use one fixed point looking south so that it is easier for you readers to follow and keep your bearings of the field.  Alas, I forgot to bring my camera along yesterday so I had to make do with my trusty Iphone camera (!). I apologise if the picture quality is not up to scratch.  My bad !
Turn 1 07.00 - 07.30

01.01 The Russians (nearest camera) make a sudden appearance in front of Legrand's 6th division deployed on high ground in and around the village of Jakobovo. Further south and behind Legrand's division Verdier's division occupies more high ground around the village of Gvozdy.  Still further south and beyond the river Nitschtshca, Doumerc's cuirassier division is deployed around the village of Klyastitzy, still unaware of the Russian presence

01.02 As the alarm is sounded by Legrand, a few French brigades in the rear move sluggishly forward, still uncertain of the extent of the Russian threat. 

Turn 2 07.30 - 08.00
02.01 The Russians calmly deploy their artillery within 800m of the French lines.  Hemmed in by woods on both flanks and on a narrow front, the lack of space forces them to use dense formations. On the hill, the French wait for the Russians to make their move.

02.02 More French units activate to the rear as the seriousness of the Russian threat becomes more apparent but Oudinot's mobilisation is still far from entire.  

Turn 3 08.00 - 08.30
03.01 The Russian guns roar into action but to scant effect, the gunners still not having found the correct range with their first salvoes. In the meantime Koulnieff sends a Jaeger brigade to occupy the woods on the Russian extreme right. To the rear, most French forces have now mobilised and are well on their way to the front, having now been made entirely aware of the Russians thanks to the roaring gunfire to the north.

Turn 4 08.30 - 09.00
No pic. (sorry !) The Russians settle for a softening bombardment causing the first casualties amongst the French as their gunners finally find the right angle of fire. Not much movement this turn anyway.
Turn 5 09.00 - 09.30
05.01 The massed Russian guns are making their presence well felt by now and after an hour of continuous bombardment Legrand's losses are starting to mount. The two French batteries on the hill attempt to counter the Russian guns but to little effect. On the French right Lorencez and Vives' brigades of Verdier's division have now reached the front and advance to take up position inside the woods.

Turn 6 09.30 - 09.45
06.01 Just before 09.30 Legrand decides that it is madness to keep exposing his troops to the withering fire from the Russian guns and decides to withdraw behind the hillcrest, having already needlessly lost more than a thousand men. Immediately the French withdraw, Wittgenstein sends his troops forward to occupy the vacated ground, Berg's 1st division on the left flank, Kakhoffski's elite grenadier division in the centre supported by heavy dragoons and Koulnieff's advance guard in flank support on the right. Will they manage to exploit the French withdrawal ?

Different camera angle this week (not too happy with it tbh) with the Russians on the right of the frame and the French on the left

Turn 6 (reprise) 09.45 - 10.00
06.06 The French realign their right flank, withdrawing their infantry towards the village of Gvozdy (partly visible on right edge of frame) in support of their reserve artillery.  In the centre Doumerc's cuirassiers deploy to the rear of the infantry lines whilst in the background Pouget's strong infantry brigade of Verdier's division and previously kept in reserve is brought up from the rear. 

Turn 7 10.00 - 10.30
07.01 Sasonov's reserve division arrives on the field for the Russians whilst the Russian advance continues at a measured pace, now firmly enveloping the northern slope of Jakobovo heights. Two batteries of Berg's artillery deploy (nearest camera) and prepare to bombard the French lines once again. In the distance, two Russian horse batteries take up a bombardment of Jakobovo village, hoping to flush out the French defenders.
07.02 Lorencez's elite light infantry holding the extreme French right are given the order to advance and duly disappear into the woods to their front. To the rear the heavy cavalry redeployment continues.

Turn 8 10.30 - 11.00
08.01 The two armies stare each other down and movement is reduced to a minimum, both sides settling down to artillery exchanges. On the Russian right, the Prince of Siberia brigade (nearest camera and partially obscured by woods) is deployed in line to counter the threat from Lorencez's light infantry advancing through the woods. In the far background, Russian jaegers advance to the woods to harass the French cavalry on the far right flank.

08.02 Lorencez's brigade charges through the woods to engage the Russian left whilst Verdier pulls his infantry further back to the outskirts of Gvozdy to avoid suffering more casualties from the Russian bombardment.

08.03 Lorencez pushes back the Prince of Siberia brigade but fails to break it. The Russians retire to the edge of the woods but remain solid.

08.04 The situation at the end of turn 8 seen from behind the Russian lines facing south. From left to right, Lorencez is pushing through the woods but still needs to break the Russian line. Russian batteries pound Vives' brigade who are retiring towards Gvozdy with casualties. In the centre both armies retain their positions, whilst Russian horse batteries supported by dragoons and hussars continue to bombard the Jakobovo defenders.  Finally, on extreme right Denissiev's jaegers stalk Castex's chasseurs a' cheval throught the woods west of Jakobovo.

That's all for now. Game length is 20 turns so there's more to come.........

Turn 9 11.00 - 11.30

09.01 On the Russian left the Prince of Siberia brigade rallies and pull back to attach with their supporting battery forming a defensive line against Lorencez's incursion. Further right on the central hill Loukoff's brigade of Berg's division smashes into Moreau's brigade whilst the Russian centre and right hold their ground.

09.02 Moreau is pushed back but Loukoff's victorious brigade is also severly mauled in the melee. In the meantime Russian heavy artillery have deployed on the hill to Lukhoff's rear.

09.03 The French cavalry spring into action with their three cuirassier brigades charging into the midst of the Russian lines. Loukhoff and Baikoff manage to form square just in time.  The Pavlov Grenadiers in centre however opt to take the charge head on in supported line.

09.04 The French cavalry charges are beaten back by the squares.  Doumerc's cavalry has inflicted some casualties but ended up disordered in the process (red markers).
Turn 10 11.30 - 12.00

10.01 Having weathered the French cavalry onslaught, the Russians launch their counterattack in the centre.  Kakhoffski's elite division consisting of dragoons and grenadiers hurl themselves at Albert's infantry and supporting artillery  

10.03 Albert's brigade is routed and their artillery captured. The French now have a gaping hole in their centre !

10.04 In their bloodlust, Balk's dragoons continue their charge headlong into Doullembourg's stationary cuirassiers.  On the right, Bistrom's victorious grenadiers take the fight to the Jakobovo village defenders.

10.05 Doullemberg's surprised cuirassiers are no match for Balk's dragoons and are swept from the field.  Bistrom's grenadiers are not so lucky however, and are unceremoniously ejected from Jakobovo with losses.

10.07  Oudinot decides to make a tactical withdrawal and pulls back to reform around Gvozdy, simultaneously pulling back the wings so as not to leave them isolated. The breathing space will serve to reorganise the line. 

Turn 11 12.00 - 12.30
11.01 The Russians manage to rein in their centre to restore order in the ranks. On left Baikoff forms line from square whilst on the right Grodno's hussars and Denissiev's jagers harass Pamplona's Portugese brigade.

11.03 Under intense bombardment the French evacuate the village of Jakobovo and withdraw further to better dress their line.

Turn 12 12.30 - 13.00
12.01 Wittgenstein orders a cautious general advance with packed shoulder-to-shoulder ranks. The bombarding batteries reponsible for the French evacuation of Jakobovo limber up and move to the front.

12.02 The French continue consolidating their position, recalling their advanced wings back into the line.

12.03 Detailed view of the situation around Jakobovo village.

12.05 The elite Pavlov grenadiers march proudly down Jakobovo heights towards the plain below supported by jagers and dragoons.

12.06 The Russian advance as seen from behind French lines.

Turn 13 13.00 - 13.30
13.01 In an attempt to resolve matters once and for all Wittgenstein orders a hasty assault on the French centre. Elite grenadiers, dragoons and line infantry surge forward in an attempt to punch a hole in the French line.

13.02 The Russian assault in detail.

13.03 The vastly outnumbered French manage to hold by the skin of their teeth !

13.04 It is now Oudinot's turn to take the offensive, with Verdier managing to sneak Lorencez's brigade round the Russian left flank and assaulting the surprised Harpe(extreme left). In the centre the French continue their gradual orderly withdrawal.

13.05 Close up of Verdier's assault.

13.06 It is one of those rare defining moments as panic grips the Russian left and centre and all take flight !  In a short fifteen minutes Wittgenstein's entire left flank dissolves under Verdier's attack.
14.02 In desperation, Wittgenstein calls up Repnin's dragoons from reserve to plug the gaping hole in his line.  Lorencez's infantry are forced in square and the momentum is lost.  However, the damage is done. In the centre, a second assault by the Pavlovs is again beaten back by the indomitable Moreau.

14.04 Lorencez slowly withdraws his square towards the safety of the French line while both sides attempt to disengage and reorganise. In the centre the village of Jakobovo has been occupied by Bistrom's Russian grenadiers supported by a horse artillery battery. This, together with two other artillery batteries are making their presence felt in the French centre left.


  1. enjoying - I like you terrain. cheer Norm

  2. That was great - no apology needed for the pics. Thank you for sharing this; I've downloaded the scenario and you've spurred me on to a bit more painting!