Saturday, 24 August 2013

Guest Blogger (2): Battle of Salamanca 22nd July 1812

We are pleased to present another post from our guest blogger, Phil from York, UK.

You may recall that Phil wargames principally in 20 mm using 1/72nd plastic figures and many of his recent games have been re-fights of battles of the Napoleonic bicentennial years. This time he has described for us his game of the Battle of Salamanca, arguably Wellesley’s most greatest victory, showing more of his beautifully painted figures.

Enough from me, it's over to Phil.

As with Lützen, I played Salamanca on my 5’ x 8’-ish table in the loft using my adaptation of Volley & Bayonet rules with brigades represented by two stands of eight figures (three for cavalry). I compiled the army lists for the game using the one in the Volley and Bayonet rulebook cross referenced with the Osprey Campaign Series book and anything else that I could find. The buildings are a mix of commercial items with some that I scratch-built by putting Wills plasticard rooves and windows on blocks of wood and plastering with poly-filler.

This was a quite a short game. The French on the allied right broke - Le Marchant went in and that was pretty much it - played out almost exactly like the original battle (perils of solo gaming?).

Below are a few photos from the early stages of the game.

Mistakenly thinking that the Anglo-Portuguese army was in retreat, Marmont sent his Army of Portugual to cut them off, only to place them flank-on and strung out across their opponent’s front. Here we see the French army with Thomières’ Division in the lead.

Leith’s 5th Division stand ready to exploit the French Marshal’s fatal mistake.

Campbell’s 1st Division poised to split the French army as it crosses the bridge over the Algabete River.

Suddenly aware of the threat to their flank, Thomières’ men turn to face the British line.

Dragoons of Le Marchant’s brigade await the order to charge.

Spry’s brigade of Leith’s 5th Division,

...prepare to attack from their position behind the village of Arapiles.

Sanchez’s lancers (Irregular Miniatures Spanish Civil War Republican cavalry).

Portuguese dragoons (a conversion from Revell’s British Guard cavalry).

Close up view of the 1e ligne from Thomières’ brigade.

Campbell’s brigade of guards advance to the attack.


Frank Chadwick, F & Novak, G (1994) Volley & Bayonet. Game Designers' Workshop. see Volley & Bayonet Publications Website.

Fletcher, I and Younghusband, B (1997) Salamanca 1812: Wellington Crushes Marmont. Campaign 48 (Eds L Johnson and D Chandler). Osprey Publishing, Oxford, England. 1st edition. 96 pp.


  1. Fantastic looking game! Thanks Phil and James.

    1. Thanks to both of you. I'm glad that you have enjoyed my humble offerings. Thanks to James and the ANF for hosting.