A Scenario based on The Combat of Moys 7th September 1757

A Scenario based on The Combat of Moys 7th September 1757

Firstly, let me say that I’m glad to be able to post again. I’ve been quite ill with Covid, even having been jabbed twice. Now I’m able to post again, and work for the first time in nearly a month, I’m feeling much better about things.

The first game here after the hiatus will be a scenario based on The Combat of Moys 1757. 

Rather than detail the battle, here is a link to an account of Moys, on Kronoskaf: Seven Years War Project.


Suffice to say, a detached Austrian corps from the army of Prince Charles of Lorraine has been confided to General of Cavalry Nadasdy. With it, he will make a surprise attack, in overwhelming numbers, to crush the corps of General Winterfeldt which is isolated from the rest of the Prussian army on the right bank of the Niesse at Gorlitz.

There are several maps of the action, all slightly different. I think this one is one of the better ones
because it doesn’t show the defensive canal that Kronoskaf shows (and details in its text).
Personally, I don’t think this canal was there in 1757 (I believe the map was surveyed in the 1870s).
If it had existed I’m not sure the action could have happened as it did: I might be wrong, correct me if I am.

The table I have set up is not a true representation of the terrain. It is a condensed version that squeezes everything together to give an overall feel of the terrain generally. 

Hermsdorf should be off table but, as the brook is quite well populated with houses along most of its length (on all of the maps) it felt appropriate to move it closer to Leopoldshayn: The gap that opened between the Austrian right and Hermsdorf, as they advanced on Moys, is key to the narrative of the combat, so 

Hermsdorf had to be moved to where the players can see it. It is still tucked out of the way of the objectives so I can’t see any problem arising from this shift of position.

The Niesse is also on table when it should be much farther back and off table. Again, it was added to help the narrative: It gives something for the Prussian reserve to be held behind before they are activated. 

The hills are a simple representation of the high ground without the ’summit knolls‘. The double ridge which held the first and second Prussian positions has been amalgamated into a single ridge: The former ridge is superfluous to the action and objectives. 

A third battery, not shown on the map above and little mentioned, was apparently situated on high ground directly south of the Jackalsberg. I have added the battery but made it impossible for it to shift position by adding a small lake (pond) and the Birkenbusche: It is in range of the Jackalsberg and the southern outskirts of Moys.

The position of the Birkenbusche (Birch Wood) is different on the maps. I’ve added it to stop the third Austrian battery from moving. Excepting its hindering of this battery it should bear very little on the action.

The area was littered with several small lakes or ponds. I’ve added some of these purely for visual effect. Except for the one that prevents the third battery moving, they can be ignored and moved about as required.

In short, my table is a deceit designed to help the combat run as a scenario.

I have scaled down the troops to my big battle scale. In this I use one unit to represent two battalions of infantry, ten cavalry squadrons, or a battery of heavy guns. Odd numbers are represented by either increasing or decreasing the units battle quality by one level as required / thought best. This scale makes most SYW battles manageable, with my collection and table; whilst it still provides enough units to make up the proper command groups (divisions) and their correct general deployments. To get things going, I have specified all unit and command quality ratings – the players will not roll to randomly determine these.

The following objectives for victory have been set for the Austrians: Take the Jackalsberg, Moys and the Langeberg. Alternatively, destroy the Prussian army and force every one of its units (except uncommitted reserve units) off table. The Prussians need only defend the key objectives until sunset (end of turn 8) to win. The bar has been set high for the Austrians because they have such an overwhelming numerical advantage. 

We will use my Men are Like Lemons SYW rules. Three special rules will be in operation:

Austrian Reserves: This command can be activated at any time. If the Austrians activate Forgach’s command group the best result they can achieve is a draw.

Palffy’s Command: On the appearance of the Stratagem card, Palffy’s command may be activated to arrive on table behind the Rothwasser. After activation it will arrive on the appearance of the player’s next Major Morale card.

Prussian Reserves: If the Austrians take the Jackalsberg or any part of Moys the grenadiers can be activated. If the Austrians take the Jackalsberg and any part of Moys, or put troops on the Langeberg the musketeers can be activated. These are the troops dispatched by the Duke of Bevern from Gorlitz as he slowly grasped the scale of the Austrian attack.

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Autor: JAMES ROACH / Olicanalad’s Games

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