Sunday 20 July 2014

Thee Most Bloody Battle of Curmudgeon Moor

Upon this day, 27th day of March in the year of Our Lorde God 1642, thee forces of Parliament did most bloodily defeate thee forces of Kynge Charles I 'pon the field of Curmudgeon Moor. For all thee most valiant forces of the Kynge did defye thine enemy, they possessed nott thee strength of arms to prevayle. What now may save thee goodfolk of Nottyngham Town?

Today I fought out the second battle in our fledgling ECW campaign. This installment was the Battle of Curmudgeon Moor and after a most bloody contest the forces of Parliament broke through the Royalist blocking force and continued their march upon Nottingham. I played the part of the Royalist commander and Curt played the part of the Parliament commander by email via written orders. We used Victory Without Quarter by Clarence Harrison from Qunidia Studios. What follows is a quick battle report and photos of the action as it happened.

The Parliament left

The Royalists line the hedgerows
Turn One
Parliament foote advances towards the Royalists line in the hedges, with their horse hanging back to see what develops. The Royalists hold their line and their falconet fires, hitting a unit of enemy pike and shotte, forcing a morale test which the pass easily.

There's grisly work ahead for the surgeons in the safety of the churchyard

Turn Two
Parliament foote advances once again towards the Royalists line in the hedges with their still horse hanging back to see what develops. The Royalists stand firm, waiting for the most opportune moment to fire.

Turn Three
The Parliament foote and horse now both advance, the foote rapidly closing. Royalist artillery fires again, this time to no effect.

Parliament advance
Turn Four
With Parliament foote now within musket range the Royalist commanded shotte lining the hedges delivers a volley to little effect. Their falconet fires again forcing another morale test from the same unit of pike and shotte which they once again pass, continuing to advance despite the increasing danger.

Turn Five
Parliament foote is now within musket range too and stops to deliver an ineffective volley against the commanded shotte lining the hedges. In response the Royalist foote return fire with a devastating effect, inflicting serious damage and causing a morale test which is failed. The Parliament unit in question is shaken but continues to advance.

Parliament foote charge the falconet that has tormented them

Turn Six
Across the line the Parliament forces are now within touching distance of the hedges. The foote which have been targeted by the Royalist falconet all afternoon charge home with a cheer and overrun the gun, killing the crew. On the Parliament right flank their horse, bravely led by their commander charges through a hail of close range musket fire and crashes into the Royalist pikes. They do bloody work, killing many and driving the foote back. Concerned by his own right flank the Royalist commander in turn leads his sole unit of horse to head off the flanking enemy cavalry hoping all the while his foote can stand firm.

A devastating Royalist volley

Crunch! All six Parliament dice scores hits despite the best effort of the foote with a triple six
Turn Seven
The Royalist commanded shotte lining the hedges continues its horrible work, pouring volley after volley into the advancing Parliamentarians. Two units of Parliament foote are broken and flee the field whist the third crosses the hedge where the Royalist artillery once sat. Royalist foote now begins to give ground. The Parliament horse finishes off the Royalist foote, breaking them in a prolonged melee and running down the survivors. The way is now open to Nottingham! The Royalist horse are now beyond recall and with swords flashing counter-charge the flanking Parliament horse, smashing them to pieces and driving them from the field in a single turn. Rupert would be proud, yet like most Royalist cavalry in the war their wonderful efforts are in vain.

More murderous musketry from the Royalists

The broken Royalist foot turn to flee

Smashed! Royalist cavalry destroy their foes in a single turn

Turn Eight
As night draws ever closer the remaining foote of both sides are locked in a struggle for control of the hedgerows. The Royalist cavalry turn and attempt to cover the road to Nottingham despite their true nature but it is too late. The Parliament commander has reached the road ahead of them and the way is open for the advance South. Parliament has won the day as night falls but at a truly horrible cost.

The closing act

Yet the struggle continues amongst the hedges

Parliament reaches the road to Nottingham and win the day

A quick note on Victory Without Quarter...
I've not used the rules before despite having had a copy for some time. It played extremely well and produced a fast paced, most enjoyable game. The outcomes of the various actions reflected historical outcomes well and it worked brilliantly for solo play. I thoroughly recommend it and can't wait for another chance to play.



  1. Wonderful, but I really need to get on a paint some more miniatures!

    1. What's stopping you then? :-)

    2. Ev's Syndrome. A condition which manifests itself through an inability to pick up a brush for extended periods of time. Help is available!

  2. A small and sharp ECW contest. Enjoyable contest!

  3. Great looking game - I like the size of the units as well as maneuvering going on. I wonder if the rules could be used for Renaissance - I'd like get my Empire guys on the table in historical scenarios. Best, Dean

    1. Cheers Dean.

      My units are a bit small compared to the author's. Clarence uses 6-7 miniatures per base which does look better. Mine are actually based for other larger systems like Warhammer ECW but they work well for small engagements like this where I'm providing both sides.

      I'd imagine with some tweaking the rules would work well for Renaissance. Try the VWQ Yahoo! group. Someone there might have already given it a go.

  4. Excellent work Millsy! I was wondering if that additional troop of Horse that the Roundheads had would turn the day and it looks like it did - a nail-biting ending to be sure. Thanks for playing it out and doing such a great job on the reporting. Looking forward to the next one.

    1. The extra horse was indeed a key factor. My dice rolling in the melee certainly helped your cause as well.

      To be truthful I was a bit uncomfortable when my musket volleys decimated your foote early on. If it had continued it would have looked pretty shifty with the Royalists going to a 2-0 lead. ;-)

  5. Though the army of the tyrant has been vanquished, it has been a sorely fought victory for the righteous; will the Scots come over the border to take advantage of the weakened state of either side?

  6. These are the rules that I've chosen for my ECW project, so good to see that they ran smoothly. Thanks for the report.


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