Another 54mm game courtesy of Anthony's excellent collection of figures. This time a refight of the battle of Hlobane, using an amended version of Battle Cry.
I really like lots of the games that use the same mechanics as Battle Cry (Memoir 44, Command & Colours etc) but have never played the original. Anthony had tracked down some amendments and scenarios for the Zulu War and came up with an intriguing scenario.
The British have been caught out by approaching Zulus in very rough, hilly terrain. They could fight it out but are outnumbered so have the option to win by successfully extricating enough troops. Of course they can't simply run away but have to occupy 2 specific hexes before this option is available... I guess a bit of face needs to be saved in case it looks too much like a rout. The other special rule is that the Zulus need 2 orders to initially move a unit off the base edge but once they are on the move they go back to just needing a single order. This, and the broken terrain, mean the Zulus can't simply overrun the British in the first couple of turns.
One of the risks with these type of games is that you can be a bit at the mercy of the cards and a bad hand can really scupper your tactics. My cards were mainly for units on the flanks so we were able to adopt the 'Horns of the Buffalo' tactics and try to envelop the British and try to block their exit route . I also had a couple of skirmish units who did their best to defend the objective hexes but, despite wiping out a couple of cavalry units, they were ultimately doomed.
|An ADC explains to the general that his cavalry seem to have disappeared|
|The almost-victorious Zulu general|
Although the Zulu centre hadn't moved far from the edge of the table, the 2 flanks were pressing hard. The British exit point was in danger of being seized by a Zulu regiment but it came under some surprisingly accurate point-blank rocket fire and was broken, leaving the way free for the British to make their escape. Had the game continued I didn't fancy the chances of the units off on the British right flank who had a long way to go to get to the exit but the point threshold had been reached and it was a narrow British victory