Napoleonic Battles! Poland 1812 Part 1!

June 26, 2014 by crew

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DISCLAIMER: The action may seem a bit vague here and there, but due to having to play as well as try and see what is happening all over the table things are a bit tricky. Also, due to the size, this battle will be fought over a period of 3 to 4 weeks!

As Napoleon advances towards the largest and bloodiest battle of the Napoleonic era at Borodino, he first must pass through the countries of Eastern Europe, including Poland.

Prince Pyotr Bagration, a General of the Imperial Russian army knew of Napoleon advancing after his defeat at Austerlitz a few years before, so decided to meet him on the field of battle.

Poland Battlefield Map

The two advancing scout parties catch sight of each other near a small walled town in Poland. The fight is on!

The Russian Cossacks advanced from the North East and East roads while French Lancers flanked through the wooded area to the south and advanced towards the town.


Scouting II

Forward units of the Russians advanced down both roads from the East and the French forward units advanced from the West.

The first Russian units advanced quickly down the central road to the walled town and managed to get two full units into the town and start boarding up windows and doors ready for the French assault. A few Russians run to high windows and start skirmishing towards the French.

The French advance from the central road steadily towards the walled town in the centre of the board, drums beating loudly, the Eagle in the front rank of all three units in a staggered formation.

Meanwhile, on the French left flank in the North, French units start to cross the bridge.

French Advance

Unfortunately, they find they have been beaten to the area by Russian cavalry and horse-guns. The Horse-guns open fire, then the cavalry charge through the smoke towards the French who decide to "Retire to a more advantageous position" back over the bridge.

Russian Guns II

Due to this the French decide to put more troops into the fight at the bridge so more troops advance towards the area.

French Advance II

While this is happening by the bridge, the Russians manage to secure the walled church as well.

Russian Advance II

Back in the middle, the Russian skirmishers continue to fire out of the windows towards the French, but as the smoke clears, the French drums continue and they march forward, time and time again. At the pinnacle moment, the first French unit launches its charge in to the town. As the mass of blue descends on the town, the Russians fall back into the depths of the town before rallying around their commanders to defend. At that moment, the first assault from the French met the resistance of the two Russian units in the town, neither giving ground.

Outside the town, both French and Russians continue to advance men.

Russian Advance

The Russians start pushing both cavalry and their huge artillery batteries around the south of the town. The French start moving some of their batteries from the central road to the south to counter the Russian flanking manoeuvre.

French Guns

To the North, the Russian guns and cavalry threat mean the French are pinned on the West side of the river and unable to cross the bridge.

Russian Guns

The Russians hold the walled church and grounds. The open ground in the centre is still fairly sparse of troops, but both French and Russian cavalry are starting to move into the area.


The walled town is currently contested with units of both armies engaged in hand-to-hand combat with reinforcements ready to pile in.

To the south, the Russians are starting to sweep around the town and threaten the French advance into the town.

Troops from both armies are pouring into the combat zone along both East-West roads.

The current situation for the French is starting to look bleak. All eyes look to Napoleon. From his horse on the central road, Napoleon looks around, surveys the battlefield. The Emperor narrows his eyes and says... be continued!

This game has been played using a modified version of the In The Grand Manner rules set. It has been modified to be as historically accurate as possible!

Matt Buck

If you would like to write an article or battle report for Beasts of War then please get in contact with us at [email protected]!

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