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Creation Date: June 14th, 2013 05:27 AM
SpaceBadger SpaceBadger is offline
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SpaceBadger's Blog: BBCodes stopped working in this Blog Description, so I moved my Links down to a Blog Entry and made it Sticky, so the latest new Blog Entries will actually be below (following) the Links entry.
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In Moot Member Blogs More of NTW: British campaign Entry Tools Rate This Entry
  #36 New December 18th, 2013 03:57 AM
Same Napoleon Total War campaign that I wrote about previously. I'm playing as the British, solitaire game against the AI.

Didn't bother writing anything down last session as nothing really interesting happened. I was mostly working on economy and finishing off the French fleet, then raiding French ports to destroy the facilities so they couldn't build any new ships.

Early March 1807

Only played one turn this evening, but it was a LONG battle. I really like the improved challenge of playing on higher difficulty for battles (except when the AI cheats instead of just playing better), but it sure made for a tense and hard to manage battle. The Spanish sent another force to besiege Gibraltar, and I sent out my army to chase them away. They had a full stack of 20 units, pretty good mix of cavalry, artillery, and infantry. I had an almost full stack of 19 units: General Abercromby, three units of Light Dragoons, two of Foot Artillery, four of Light Infantry, and nine Line Infantry.

The Spanish force had a better general, which meant that I had to set up my forces first, without seeing where the Spanish would be - which didn't make a lot of sense when my force was supposed to be sallying out to break a siege, but oh well, those are the rules.

The battlefield was very flat, but had a forest in the middle that would be a problem for direct artillery fire, and I didn't have any howitzers. Since I didn't know where the Spanish would be, I set up strong points at each side of the forest, with artillery placed to cover all of the open space, and Line Infantry to protect the artillery. Since I was the supposed attacker and could not rely on the Spanish to come to my lines, I also formed two maneuver groups, each composed of one Light Infantry (skirmishers who have better range) flanked by two Line Infantry (who can really pour out the musket fire at closer range, are stronger in melee, and can square up to defend against cavalry). One of these maneuver groups I set up to advance through the forest, the other I set to the far west end of my line, to move off obliquely toward where I thought they might find a Spanish flank to attack, while staying out of the line of fire of the artillery that would support them.

Naturally the plan did not survive contact with the enemy, but overall it worked out very well. What was really tricky to deal with (moreso than on easier setting I have played so far) was that the AI was actually decent at responding to my attacks. When my western maneuver group found the Spanish flank and started killing them, instead of just standing there and dying, or even turning to fight my troops (which still would have led to them dying due to my unit arrangement), the AI actually moved several of its units quite effectively to try to flank my guys! Awesome to see, and that is the sort of thing that had my attention skittering all over the battlefield, unable to concentrate on just one part of the battle because if I did, the AI would be battering my troops somewhere else!

I believe it was declared a Close Victory, but that rankles a bit as all of the Spanish units either died or fled the field, whereas I suffered some hard casualties but did not lose any units. In fact, after the battle was over and the game returned to strategic view, I could see where the Spanish had retreated a short distance away; they still had 14 units, but all were badly understrength. My army still had movement left, so I sent a good portion of it (leaving severely battered units behind so as not to risk total loss of them) to try to finish off the Spanish. That way, the Spanish would not be able to refresh any of those units and would have to build new ones to replace them. The battle screen auto-resolve odds showed so high in my favor that even though I know the AI cheats on auto-resolves, I made a quick-save and gave it a try rather than spend a tedious battle chasing down Spanish units to try to prevent them routing off the field again. The results were actually OK, all of the Spanish destroyed and my losses not too bad, so I just left it at that and marched my victorious troops back to the city.
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