Sunday, July 25, 2010

Battle of Busaco - Part One

Battle of Busaco

Historical background

In September 1810 Massena invaded Portugal. Wellington retreated to Busaco, where he took up a strong defensive position and offered battle to the French.
Historical Map

Historical Orbat

Wellington 51,000 infantry 210 cavalry 60 guns
Massena 66,000 infantry 3,500 cavalry 114 guns

Wargame Orbat

Wellington 56 infantry 0 cavalry 2 guns
Massena 64 infantry 8 cavalry 3 guns

Table at start

Wellington’s army is deployed on the Busaco ridge at the far end of the table, with the village of Moura to the right of the road. Behind the ridge is the Busaco convent.

Ney commands the corps to the right of the road, Reynier the one to the left. Massena commands the cavalry and artillery reserve in the centre. The village of San Antonio is to the left of the road.

French left

Reyniers corps deployed in brigade column of attack with the artillery in the centre

French right

Neys corps deployed in brigade column of attack with the artillery in the centre.
To their left Massena commands the cavalry and artillery reserve.

British left

Artillery line the ridge with infantry out of sight behind them.
Light infantry hold Moura and more infantry in reserve near the convent

British right

More artillery on the ridge, with British and Portuguese infantry behind them.


  1. Excellent Paul, I'm looking forward to watching the game develop. Just read through the Talavera game and it really seemed to flow well. I will give some of these games a run through myself soon using your rules. My units are infantry@16 and cavalry @8 so the rules still work fine. I guess I should also double up the artillery units?

    Do you have a complete set of your rules ready yet Paul or are you still working back through them on the 'rules' blog?

    All the best,

  2. Hi Lee

    Still working on the rules, but should be ready soon.

    If you double the infantry and cavalry it will not make any difference. If you double the guns it will, because they will fire twice each turn instead of once, thus double the chances of a hit. You could make them two gun batteries but ?

    The rules do seem to flow well, but I would say that wouldn't I! It would be interesting to see how someone who has not used them before gets on with them.