Friday, 13 January 2017

Trafalgar 1805

21st October 1805, a signal is hoisted on the HMS Victory's mizzen mast: 
England expects that every man will do his D-U-T-Y.
 WHILE Gaul's proud despot, with insatiate hands
Wastes prostrate Europe's subjugated lands;
And bids his blood-stain'd hordes, thro' realms afar
"Cry Havoc, and let slip the Dogs of War;"
Britannia's Genius, with indignant eyes,
The Tyrant's impotence of Rage defies;
And while, disdainful of his phrenzied boast,
She spurns Invasion from her menac'd Coast;
And sends her dauntless Squadrons o'er the main,
To scrouge her Foes, and vindicate her Reign;
She sees with joy, were'er her Banner spreads,
Glad Conquest, hov'ring o'er her brave Heroes' heads!

L. H. Halloran 1806
 Nelson's column
 Collinwood's own
 Gravina and the combined rear
  Dumanoir's vanguard
 HMS Africa, quite lost
 Redoutable's view (gulp!)
 Bucentaure & Santíssima Trinidad
 Gravina's Príncipe de Asturias
 HMS Royal Sovereign (light blue ensign)
 HMS Victory
 The brits begin by fanning out left and right

 Poor captain Lucas is the first to suffer the enemy fire
 The allies then try a pincer movement while infiltrating some ships between the two columns

 English fire soon rains over the incoming ships

 Some allies give covering fire to advancing comrades

 While part of Collinwoods's veer to starboard, the rest plough ahead

 The Santa Ana crosses the T of the column while sucessive boardings erupt on the spanish rearguard
 The allies are trying to envelop Nelson...

 A british column slips past the Santa Ana trying to cut the allied line
 Combat soon devloves into a melee with some ships firing both broadsides!
  A spanish ship (orange) strikes under concentrated fire from the Victory, being the first to do so
 The Redoutable also surrenders to a three decker

 Gravina has the edge on his boarding while around him some go one side, some another...
 French pile in onto a british
 A Hapless spanish under attack from two english
 But then a british ship strikes after losing the hand to hand fight!
 Multiple boarding with several ships entangled around the Santa Ana
 Another brit strikes, the Royal Sovereign coming too late to save her
 A lone spanish gives up to superior forces
 Gravina ends his opponent without a scratch on him
 But next to him two spanish strike!
 The french then pound Collinwood, setting his flagship on fire
 The intrepid british column finds its way blocked. and under repeated broadsides the heading ship begins to burn...
 An allied ship striking next to the Victory and Bucentaure
 The last shots of the battle see a british 2 decker strike under fire from three spanish
 At this point I had to go to my uncles's house so we counted up victory points (VP).
Victory conditions:
British: sink triple VP than the allies
Allies: tie up or sink more VP than the british
 As you can see above the allies have sunk 16 VP (a two decker is worth 4) and the british 24:
 with neither player fulfilling his victory conditions the game is a DRAW!
Parting shot of the battle

The game played out well enough. I as the allied player tried a more agressive approach than the passive one used back then, emphasizing boarding actions to counter the british "fire twice" rule: it turned out well enough since winning Trafalgar seemed impossible with them.

I made a quick calculation and at our actual turn rate we would have needed no less than six hours to game the full 12 turns(!)


  1. Excellent looking game, and I think a quick game with that number of vessels! :)

  2. It was reasonabily fast but my opponent doesn't have the time for that number of ships, playing with half could be better