1813 in Germany
The Spring Campaign to After the Armistice
We design our Campaign Guides to compliment Et sans résultat! but we don't believe supplements should only work with one game system.
There are literally hundreds of Napoleonic wargames available and, We shall meet in Vienna works with nearly any one you choose.
With maps provided in scale miles, orders of battle down to the battery and battalion level, and an ever growing ratings conversion page for translating Combat Ratings to other popular Napoleonic games, you can begin using We shall meet in Vienna on your wargames table immediately.
Don't see your favorite game on the conversion page? Write us and maybe we can help with that.
In 1813 even the small actions were big. We shall meet in Vienna offers nine scenarios, covering eight battles. Even the smallest would be considered a major engagement in an earlier campaign.
Großbeeren & Blankenfeld
During the Spring Campaign, both sides have the potential to win the war and end the conflict in their own favor.
After the Armistice, the tide has shifted, with the French now playing for time, while the Allies seek decisive results.
Playing the scenarios as linked campaigns, it quickly becomes apparent which engagements are must win battles, but those that are important to your opponent, may not be otherwise of consequence to you.
We shall meet in Vienna provides the game host briefing for each scenario so the organizer doesn't need to do any additional research or work to setup the gaming table and invite over the players. Just get out your miniatures and layout your terrain!
Standing over the wargames table players are nearly omnipotent, see all, know all. But on the battlefield generals commonly see only a small portion of the confused mess, made worse by smoke and inaccurate reports.
With individualized briefings players begin the game with imperfect knowledge, forced to construct a plan without the real dispositions of their enemy, or sometimes themselves.
The early campaigns of 1813 involved nearly a half million men, organized into hundreds of regiments, from four major nations and close to another dozen minor states.
We've all prepared and organized the forces for a large battle only to realize that none of our reference materials show us the uniform of that one last regiment.
Tracking down the Late War uniform of the 3rd Regiment Étranger aka the Irish Legion, or the Würzburg Jägers zu Pferd, or the mixed facings of Saxony's Converged “Spiegel” Grenadiers, can prove far too difficult.
Over 1500 uniform images, detailing every regiment featured in the scenarios. All in one place, for easy reference.
We shall meet in Vienna is the third Campaign Guide to be published by The Wargaming Company for the Napoleonic Wars.
Our first, Master of the World, 1812 in Russia, was followed by our second, Roll up that Map, 1805 in Germany.
Now We shall meet in Vienna makes three.
And there will be more.
Future titles will follow the same format:
To about these and other exciting announcements, join our Announcements Mailing List.
|Möckern||Six to Eight||Advanced||3 by 11 scale miles||1:30pm to 7pm||Eugène's Army vs Murat's Advanced Guard||The French attempt to stem the Russian invasion into Germany.|
|Lützen||Ten to Fifteen||Expert||3 by 9 scale miles||11am to 7pm||Napoleon's Grande Armée
vs Alexander's Russo-Prussian Army
|While the Allies attempt to destroy Ney, Napoleon attempts to destroy the Allies.|
|Bautzen||Ten to Fifteen||Expert||6 by 12 scale miles||7am to 8pm
5am to 8pm
|Napoleon's Grande Armée
vs Alexander's Russo-Prussian Army
|Napoleon's last chance to end the War of the VI Coalition in a single battle.|
|Two||Advanced||3 by 4 scale miles||10am to 1pm
1pm to 10pm
|Oudinot's Army of Berlin
vs Bernadotte's Army of the North
|The first attempt by the French to take Berlin after the armistice.|
|Katzbach||Six to Nine||Expert||3 by 8 scale miles||1pm to 9pm||Army of the Bober
vs Army of Silesia
|Macdonald divides his army in an attempt to play Napoleon to Blücher's Blücher.|
|Dresden||Ten to Fifteen||Expert||3 by 8 scale miles||4am to 9pm
7am to 9pm
|The Army of Bohemia
vs La Grande Armée
|The Austrians decided make their presence known, in the Saxon capital, of all places.|
|Hagelberg||Two||Intermediate||3 by 4 scale miles||1pm to 5pm||Gírard's Division
vs Hirschfeld Corps
|A French rear guard is confronted by a Prussian pursuit as the French slink south.|
|1st Kulm||Three to Six||Expert||6 by 3 scale miles||11am to 7pm
6am to 1pm
|Vandamme's I Corps
vs the Army of Bohemia
|A French pursuit becomes over zealous in the hunt of its prey.|
Napoleon had tasked Eugène de Beauharnais with holding together what was left of the Army, and really, with holding the borders of the Empire. Eugène had frustrated his stepfather as he withdrew farther into Germany, failing to hold the eastern boarder, or to hardly even contest it, as the Russo-Prussian Army pushed westward and retook Berlin. Napoleon’s expectations were objectively ridiculous. Eugène’s Forces were no where near equipped to cover the frontage required of them.
After the fall of Berlin to the Prussians, Eugène had setup a new defensive line on the Elbe. On 2 April, his Army of the Elbe re-crossed the river at Magdeburg and setup a perimeter along the Ehle. Wittgenstein, moving southwest in an effort to connect with Blücher on the eastern bank of the Elbe, had his advanced elements driven back by Eugène’s unpredicted offensive.
Historically, Eugène lost his nerve immediately upon being confronted at multiple points along his defensive line on the Ehle. This caused him to withdraw back west of the Elbe. Had Eugène decided to hold, the actions west of Möckern might have become a major engagement.
Lützen was the first major engagement of the Spring Campaign. The Allied hope was to overwhelm and annihilate Ney’s isolated III Corps d’armée, which was strung out along the landscape of small villages east of Lützen. This course of action was not only an opportunistic attempt to cripple Napoleon by destroying a French corps, but part of a larger strategic fight over the area around Leipzig.
Lützen would mark the first time the French and Prussians would fight in major action since Wilhelm Anton von L'Estocq led the remnants of the Prussian Army in a counter-attack at Eylau in 1807. It would also be the first time since Russia, that Napoleon commanded La Grande Armée in battle personally. Early in the morning a clash between the French V Corps under Lauriston and Prussians commanded by Kleist in the western suburbs of Leipzig began the day. Now, focus shifted south as Marshal Ney and his III Corps d’armée – formed largely of raw recruits – was struck head-on by the modernized Prussian Army that would play a key role in the remainder of the period.
Lützen would also bring Blücher, the Prussian light cavalry officer who was nearly 64 years old when he led charges at Auerstädt in 1806, now over 70, to the forefront as the epitome of Prussian rage, and the driving force for war against Napoleonic France. The opening battle to decide the fate of Germany begins on a flat plain south of Leipzig, just 14 miles from where it would ultimately end.
Following Lützen, the Russo-Prussian Army had retired eastward, eventually landing at Bautzen. Between the two battles were a series of minor skirmishes as the opposing Armies poked each other to determine their exact whereabouts and directions of march. Each monarch’s government continue courting the Austrians, as their intervention on either side was expected to be a determining blow. The Russian high command feared allowing a conflict to occur within Austrian boarders, especially should such a battle be resolved in the French favor, as it might successfully scare the Habsburgs into honoring their tenuous alliance with Napoleonic France.
Following the Spring Armistice, Napoleon named the Army of Berlin for the express purpose of capturing the Prussian capital under the hopes it would divide priorities and loyalties within the Sixth Coalition. The Allies had not yet adopted the Trachenberg Plan but had formed the multiple Armies that would allow for it. Charged with covering the northern sector of Germany, was Bernadotte’s still forming, Army of Northern Germany.
A multi-national Army made up of Prussians, Russians, and Swedes, the differing motivations of the coalition were readily apparent within the command structure. There was highly politicized disagreement between Bülow and Bernadotte, now the Crown Prince of Sweden. Bülow was notably worried that Bernadotte planned to abandon Berlin in the face of the French advance. Bernadotte seemed frustrated that the Prussians were determined to oppose Oudinot’s offensive action.
For Oudinot’s part, he struck from the south of Berlin with three corps along divergent roads. The first option for uniting his Army was between Großbeeren and Heinerdorf. Bülow had the Prussian elements of Bernadotte’s Army jockeying for position along Oudinot’s route of march while the Crown Prince kept the Russian and Swedish Forces in “close support”. It seemed that both “close” and “support” meant different things in Swedish than in German.
The terrain between the two battlefields was terrible and, worse yet to the south where the French approached from. While it would assist the Allies in their defense, it would seriously hamper any attempt for the different Forces to support each other.
The two Armies would collide at Großbeeren.
Following the Armistice, Napoleon had set east towards Blücher’s new Army of Silesia. During a series of minor skirmishes Blücher determined Napoleon was commanding in person, and fell back in accordance with the Trachenberg Plan. When Schwarzenberg began marching on Dresden with the Army of Bohemia, Napoleon immediately left to address the new threat to Saxony’s capital. Marshal Macdonald was assigned to take over the Army of the Bober with instructions to halt the pursuit and hold the line of the Bober. Macdonald entirely ignored the Emperor’s orders. Occurring in parallel with the Battle of Dresden, Macdonald crossed the Katzbach and slammed into Blücher’s main Force. Neither having planned to meet the enemy nor have a fight, both backed off to regroup before striking again. The rain would not stop until well after the battle ended.
With Napoleon personally leading the Army of the Bober in its pursuit of Blücher’s Army in Silesia, Schwarzenberg attempted to seize the initiative and move on the Saxon capital of Dresden, one of three forward bases of French operation in Germany: Dresden, Leipzig, and Hamburg. If Dresden could be captured by the Allies, it would be a near death blow to French activity east of the Rhine. Saxony would be hard pressed to remain in the Confederation of the Rhine, and even less disposed to continue providing a corps of troops to Napoleon’s Grande Armée.
After Oudinot’s defeat by Bülow at Großbeeren, Gírard sought to move to cover Oudinot’s retreat. Bülow argued for a general advance, to fall upon the Army of Berlin before Oudinot could find safe haven and reorganize, but the Crown Prince of Sweden overruled him and practically forbade any advance beyond patrols. Hirschfeld saw an opportunity to strike Gírard and remove the threat of his division.
Following the Battle of Dresden and the resulting retreat of the Army of Bohemia, Napoleon ordered his subordinates to aggressively pursue the enemy, likely frustrated by the failed pursuits of Lützen and Bautzen. Vandamme was instructed to strike towards Kulm with Mortier moving in his support with the Young Guard. His specific targets were Osterman-Tolstoy and Eugen von Württemberg's commands. There were a series of small actions on the 28th and the French pursuit was looking successful. Some elements of Schwarzenberg’s Army had been cut off and the Army was not united as a whole. The Allies were struggling to retreat through the mountainous country and break contact with their pursuers.
By the night of August 28th, Osterman-Tolstoy held together the rear most elements of Schwarzenberg’s Army of Bohemia in the vicinity of Kulm in the Teplitz Valley of the Erzgeberg mountains. That night, under steady attacks by French infantry and cavalry, Prince Eugen von Württemberg had watched Schachafskoy’s 3rd Infantry Division disintegrate into a mob. The French attacks halted sometime in the early hours of the morning and both sides attempted to reorganize. The French drawing together their pursuit Force, the Russians patching together their rear guard.
The French Army is represented by over 800 images depicting, not only the generic units of the campaign, but also an extensive list of variations. In excess of 225 units are individually representing over 15 nation states.
The Austrian army of 1813, made up of over 80 units, is depicted in over 250 images.
The Prussian army of the late war was arguably the most modern army of its time in its dress. Over 300 images detailing over 110 individual units.
The Russian army of the late war, depicted in over 200 images detailing over 150 individual units.