Sunday, 3 January 2016

Battle of Kolin - Part 2

My apologies for any typos and spelling errors on names and places (I can't pronounce them anyway). I noticed a lot in the final read through, but it really is not worth going back editing photos.

Starting positions

As discussed in the last post the game was set up with about half of the Austrian forces deployed on the hills, and the rest were marching across the rear, and not deployed (which was good as I was out of 'white' battalions).

The Prussians were mostly marching down the Kaiserstrasse. with just Schonaich's cavalry deployed to protect against Stampach's cavalry.

Game start time about 11:00
(Ooops - I have labelled 'Oak Wood' wrong - it should be the one in the distance!)

None of the players were SYW  'experts', and luckily none knew much about the battle. I gave them a quick run down of the prelude to the battle, explained that the whole board was swarming with grenz skirmishers, but that I would not represent them (it would slow down the game - and I have no figures yet - soon?). I did not mention that some of the villages were garrisoned, as Frederick did not think of it!

The two commanders were then asked to write simple orders for their commands.

  • The Prussians opted to march around the Austrian right with Zieten and Hulsen, with a frontal attach by everyone else.
  • The Austrians decided to hold as they were, but redeploy Wied's infantry to the area of the Oak Wood.

Zieten's hussars defeat Nadasdy's 

East of Kutlire Nadasdy's 6 units of hussars made a spirited attack on Zieten's 7 units of Prussian counterparts. (As you can see we are having to improvise with the cavalry, these should nearly all be hussars. We don't have enough hussar figures, as we have been waiting for the new ones.)

Game time 11:24

Unfortunately for the Austrians the superior tactics of the Prussians (dice) resulted in a comprehensive defeat, and the 4 remaining units went scampering back towards the gap between Oak Wood and Radowesnitz; leaving the 6 remaining Prussian units in control of the plain.

Game time 11:55

In the background can be seen Hulsen's infantry ready to exploit Zieten's sucess.

Schonaich attacks and defeats Stampach

Towards the west end of the battlefield Schonaich threw his two units of cuirassiers and one of dragoons into Stampach's two units each of cuirassiers and dragoons on Probertz Hill opposite  (improvising again - we don't have enough cuirassier figures - waiting for..............).

Game time 12:00

Yet again superior Prussian discipline (dice) allows them to defeat their Austrian counterparts and clear the hill.

Game time 12:24

However behind the hill is Serbellini with another to units each of Austrian Cuirassiers and dragoons, so the Prussian attack ran out of steam and Sebellini retook the hill.

Tresckow and Bevern attack on Austrian centre

The Prussian attack on the centre developed at the same time as Schonaich's cavalry attack, aimed at Andlau's infantry (on Przerovky Hill) and the grenadier reserve (on Krzeczor Hill), along with their two supporting heavy batteries. On the right can be seen Serbellini's cavalry back in possession of Pobertz Hill.

Game time 12:46

A general view of the battlefield at that time, as can be seen, the main Prussian attacks are developing, but the left wing flank attack has stalled.

Game time 12:47

Hulsen has delayed the attack on the main left flank attack, and committed his whole brigade to clear the grenze from Kultire, and also held back Zieten in support.

Game time 12:47

Tresckow and Bevern made it up into a firefight with the Austrians on the ridge, however the attack ran out of steam (it did kill off the grenadiers), and when the Prussians realised there were two more brigades of infantry in reserve behind the ridge they decided to call off the attack. (Sorry about photo quality, it is a zoom into a longer shot).

Game time 14:18

Pennavaire's cavalry make no impression on Puebla's infantry

Over to the west of the fiend Pennavaire rashly decides to try and break through the infantry of Puebla who are ensconced on Pobortz Hill with his three units of cuirassiers (one elite) and two of dragoons.

Game time 13:09

We lost count of the number of charges the elite cuirassiers made but due to the skill of both commanders (dice) the infantry held firm, but the cavalry took few casualties (must have run out of powder). They were still attacking when we finished playing!

Game time 14:22

Hulsen & Zieten  attacks on the Prussian right

After clearing the grenz out of Kultire Hulsen and Zieten finally put into motion the attack by the Prussian right flank.

Game time 13:44

However the grenz had done their job well and gained time for Wied to arrive on the flank with 7 battalions of foot to stabilise the Austrian right

Game time 14:19

The End

The game started to run out of steam about 14:30, we played on for another hour or so, but as players started to leave, I took over playing rather than 'umpiring' and only took occasional photos. The last photo I took was at 15:20, showing Bervern's infantry cresting Pobortz Hill, and seeing the massed Austrian reserves behind - enough is enough!


The Prussian attacks in the centre ran out of steam before their left hook got into motion, delaying to drive the grenz out of Kutlire really lost the Prussians any chance of success. Also, the attacks on the centre should have delayed to allow Hulsen & Zieten to get moving.

The Austrians were cautious with their reserve infantry, and only redeployed Wied to the right, keeping Sincere and Stahemberg behind Puebla and Andlau respectively, one of them should have been enough. If Hulsen had attacked earlier there is a good chance that the Prussians could have caused serious damage. But as in the actual battle, the Prussians really did not have much hope, as Daun could observe the Prussian flank march, and had the advantage of interior lines to redeploy his forces.

A thoroughly enjoyable game, and the rules worked well, giving a very realistic result. I will use them again for large battles.

Back to work tomorrow!


  1. Replies
    1. Thanks - next they march on to Wittenberg!

  2. Looks great, and play time was good, especially for being a big game with everyone new to the rules.

    1. The rules are very quick, fun, and give a realistic result - just the job for a big game.

  3. Looks like it played out in a very historical way.

    1. It did - the rules allowed a large game to be played in quite a short time - and give a reasonable result.