Monday, February 1, 2016

The trap is sprung

Knight-Colonel Ricco Furfante was trusted by the Parmigiano government to bring peace to the freshly established frontier between Calvacasa's territory and that of the loyalists. The colonel was famed for his knowledge in the art of la petite guerre. And one thing was established about him: as a dragoon officer, he was fond of being in the middle of action. 
The northern bandits received intelligence about an army surgeon's medicine wagon being escorted through the border. They decided to capture the goods at the edge of cultivated land where an ambush is least expected. They did not know however that the intel was forged by Furfante himself, and he made sure two cavalry guards of the central army were in close support, but unseen by rebel spies.

The rebel group consisted of two swordsmen, two leaders, two riders and three men with muskets. There were two dragoons, two Cacciatori, a provincial sergeant and five footman in the loyalist detail (both parties are worth ~500 points in Flashing Steel).

Loyalist objectives: (1) Destroy more than half of the enemy force; (2) Escort the medicine supply across the field to the top of the hill.
Bandit objectives: (1) Destroy more than half of the original enemy force (the cavalry guard not counted); (2) Capture the medicine supply and retain the hold of it for three turns.

The bandits hid as well as they could, opening the fight with a volley from behind the hedges. The foremost dragoon's horse neighed and reared, throwing off its rider.

The bandit lieutenant and his two men rushed the Cacciatori defending the enemy's flank. The Cacciatori did not have time to draw their sword bayonets and one was seriously wounded. A bandit took a wild shot at the fallen dragoon and managed to take him out of action.

The provincial infantry advanced on the road and the bandits' attack faltered as the Colonel loudly declared his name and the usual threats if they had not laid their weapons down. Furfante and the remaining Cacciatore engaged in a melee with the bandits: the officer's cuirass and rapier gave him a huge advantage over the untrained foes. Two of them were killed and the third fell back.

The second dragoon caught up with the infantry and the mounted bandits also attempted to tip the balance but were too slow to engage.

It seemed the loyalists could not be stopped: the bandits fell back after Colonel Furfante gutted the third swordsman.

The Colonel gave the secret sign and the cavalry guard entered the field. The bandits were quick to run away, though, and despite all their efforts, the guardsmen could not harm them.

The loyalists, even though both sides had two figures with the Leader quality, were better oganized in their resistance. The bandits spread out too much, so their casualties were high. This means the loyalist side is going to choose the setup for the next encounter, but they had used their reinforcement option in vain. The bandits also quit the field before the secondary objective could have been completed, and I think the fair ruling is that because only two activations were spent on moving the wagon, it counts as a missed chance.

Mini-campaign status:
Victory Points: Loyalists 1, Bandits 0
Morale Points: Loyalists 8, Bandits 5 (lost 1 as a result of their defeat)

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