The Great Game Waterloo Replayed
Two days of gaming. 80 wargamers and 40 army veterans. 22500 miniatures in 28mm. Replaying the battle of Waterloo over four gigantic tables each 6 feet wide and 80 feet long. And all the money raised was going to go to a well deserving charity, Waterloo Uncovered. What is there not to like?
This was an event I wasn't going to miss. Gamers and veterans came from around the world to play, including a brave bunch of Aussies to help referee the event.
The rules used were Black Powder 2, by Warlord Games, with some modifications. These worked really well, particularly considering the number of players. Turns were strictly limited to 20 minutes a side and the change of turn was announced on a tannoy and with display screens.
On the public gallery overlooking the Great Game, they had several participation games and reenactors, who showed the public musket drill and how the different parts of their kit worked. There was also a small exhibition of finds from the Waterloo Uncovered digs.
The game itself went very well. At one stage it looked like the French were going to break through but then their attack began to run out of steam. With pressure from the Prussians on the flanks, the French ran out of reserves and the British broke through to La Belle Alliance.
Napoleon and his staff were camped there and rapidly departed when the 7th Hussars under Lt Col Kerrison almost caught them. Literally, a single roll of two dice would have determined this battle, but the 7th Hussars failed their order test and Napoleon lived to see another day.
By the end of day two, it was clear that Napoleon hadn't broken the Allies. While the fighting would have continued, time had run out and it was clearly an Allied victory. To be fair to the French, even a draw would have been a loss to Napoleon.
This was an amazing event, to see so many miniatures on the table and to feel the 'buzz' in the hall coming from the gamers. And the one question almost everyone was asking - when's the next one?