Prussia’s Glory II – Kolin

On the table, the battle of Kolin from Prussia’s Glory II.

Fought on 18 June 1757, the real battle featured a flank march by Freddie and the Prussians which ended with an uphill assault on the well positioned, defending Austrian army under Marshall Leopold Daun. According to Christopher Duffy (The Army of Frederick the Great – The Emperor’s Press) the Prussian army started with 34,000 soldiers and lost about 14,000, while the Austrians lots 9,000 out of about 53,000. A bloody encounter, fought under a blazing sun, it was an inevitable defeat for the Prussians.

Here is the cardboard version:

(The map is oriented so that north is to the top of the screen.) The Prussians (in blue) marched in the direction shown by the A arrow, turned south, and attacked the waiting Austrians who had carefully changed position enough to maintain a defensive terrain advantage. Daun also made good use of his reserves to stem moments of danger.

Looking at the map, there aren’t many options, though. The B arrow shows a possible alternative, the advantage of which is it will engage the Austrian army that much quicker. But the terrain is no more attacker friendly.

The Austrians’ best units are those cavalry nearest the Prussians. These units prevent the Prussians marching in column, quickly, and striking at some point of weakness. (Though where that is, is an open question!)

My only attempt so far, was to take the historical route. I did better than history – for the Prussians – but it was still an Austrian marginal victory. Now I have it setup again (and have remembered to take a picture!) and will ponder a bit before deciding whether to repeat or try the other route.

Now that the rules are firmly embedded in my brain, or as embedded as they ever will be, it’s enhanced the playing experience. Good fun. (But demoralizing as to any lingering self image of martial skill!)