Saturday 8 September 2018

The Battle of Cowpens in 28mm at the Mess

It was nice to get my 28mm AWI troops out for bash at the Mess when the Southern Strategists met for a game this week. The game was loosely based on the battle of Cowpens in 1781 and the rules were a variation of  Lion Rampant. Unfortunately, due to a combination of  a slight miscalculation in making the rebel militia too strong in defence and poor dice throwing on the part of the attacking commanders of His Most Britannic Majesty's forces (of which I was one), the game only lasted an hour! We did manage to follow history in having the British force defeated, but unlike the real battle, the British only made it to the second line of defence before capitulating. I managed to get a few photos of the action before our troops disappeared from the table.
The centre of the British line as it advanced towards the rebels in the distance. The unhistorical von Munchausen-by-Proxy Hessian Grenadiers (in the foreground) formed the reserve.  

The centre of the rebel defence, with militia in the first line, State units in the Second, and Continental regiments formed in the rear. They never got to fire a shot.

The British light infantry and grenadiers advance on the left flank and should have made light work of the militia...if only they had without sustaining heavy casualties.

The rebel commander showing confidence in dealing with the enemy. 

These are Rodger's superbly painted Eureka Miniatures rebel militia. They proved to be a harder nut to crack than in the real battle.

The British light infantry push back the rebel militia, with things looking quite promising for British at this point. 

British Legion dragoons outflanking a rebel unit on the British right flank. Sadly, too many of Tarleton's boys were shot from their saddles and the unit was destroyed. 

The light infantry charging the militia, and like their counterparts on the right flank, they too suffered heavily and were destroyed.   

What a sorry sight! The British only had two units left after seeing off the militia. Now I know how Tarleton felt having to quit the field after receiving 'a damn good thrashing.'

Until next time!


  1. Great looking Front Rank figures! You have to be very careful with AWI battles in my experience, because the Brits area generally outnumbered and many rules don't recognize the huge variation in troop quality. The Americans should generally be a morale grade (or two) below the brits - and riflemen or militia should be severely disadvantaged in melee, as no riflemen and few militia men possessed bayonets!

  2. I entirely agree with RROSS, Balancing games is very difficult.
    Possibly making the militia stand for only 1 turn of firing before withdrawing might have worked better for Cowpens?

  3. We were doing so well....till the first dice were rolled. We couldn't even win the initiative!

  4. Stunning game with beautiful figures and terrain! I was surprised to read the rules were a version of LR; I thought Black Powder initially. And, I am well acquainted with not taking pictures before my figures are removed from the table top. :)