Friday, 10 April 2009

Battle for the Heights of Carillon, July 1758

For the first time in too long I actually hosted a game at the club last night. I chose a battle from the French & Indian War, the Battle for the Heights of Carillon (or Ticonderoga if you prefer) from July 1758.

The game gave me an opportunity to dust off my 15mm Essex figures and use my new Terrain Warehouse Vauban defences to use as Fort Carillon along with my own breast works for those on the heights. I chose the Habitants & Highlanders rules by the Canadian Wargamers Group as they are easy to pick up and allow for some manoeuvring on the table.

Whilst both sides had similar numbers of units the British had a number of substantially larger ones including, in particular, the 42nd Highlanders. The British objective was simply to reach the fort, of course the French were to have other ideas.

The main challenge for the French was that, whilst they were able to place works on the heights, there was sufficient room on the table for them to be outflanked by the British. Indeed, with the French safely behind their works, the British did start to try to move to the Northern side of the heights. They deployed with some provincials in front in skirmish formations followed by the British line but with a signficant part of the force, including the Highlanders, moving to bypass the heights.

Ben, playing Montcalm the French commander, decided to be bold and advanced one brigade out over the works to swing round and attack the British flank. He also advance to challenge the British skirmish line which, with some spectacularly bad luck with the dice, crumbled. The British were then pinned by the French, unable to advance past them without exposing their flank, and left to attack the main French position on the hill.

Despite the French advance there was some interesting replay of history with the 42nd attacking up the hill against determined French resistance; however, they took some substantial casualties and, in the end, their army morale broke and the game was a victory for the French (as it was historically).


  1. Hello sir!

    I am jealous of you because I am trying to play with the Habitans and Highlanders rules with my new 15mm Bluemoon miniatures from Old Glory. The thing is that I have a lot of questions about the rules that do not seems to me very clear for example the firing phase. I understand the multiplication way for sure but how do the enemy dies? I have no clue.

    Could you help me since you look like a veteran in this game.

    Thank you, Louis.

  2. Firing is pretty straightforward - the calculation is Actions x No. of Figures x Fire Factor x Modifiers - for example, if a 12 figure unit spends two actions firing muskets at a target in works then the result will be: 2 x 12 x 10 x 1/2 = 120%. The target unit suffers 1 casualty for each 100% and you roll percentage dice for the remainder to see if that is an additional casualty - so in the example if you roll 20 or less on the percentage dice then an additional casualty (i.e. two in total) will be suffered otherwise it will just be the one. I hope that clarifies it but if not let me know.

  3. Okay!!!

    So if I understand correctly, if I have a result of 340% then I have 3 casualities for sure and I have to roll 40% or less to have another one!(4 or less on a 10facedice) Thank you very much Al!

    And I have 2 other last questions :

    1-If the result is 245% how do you calculate the 5%? On a 10 face-dice?? Just like on the morales, there are some that are of 65%, I mean what's the point? Is a percentage dice different from a 10facedice?

    2-And what is the initiative of a brigade leader? Where is it write in the rules?? Do they have the same initiative as their C-in-C??

    Thank you very much for your help and I am very eager to play!

  4. That's correct.

    Percentage dice is two d10 - one representing 10s and the other units. You can either use two different coloured dice or roll a single dice twice first for 10s and second for units.

    The junior officer initiative is an oversight in the rules. Given that the scenarios are historical I have tended to use my background reading to form a judgement as to what initiative they should get. You will also notice some inconsistencies in terminology - although these are usually fairly simple to translate.

  5. Thank you very much for your help Al!

    I was not very familiar with these types of rules in wargames, I am a player of Warhammer 40k and to venture in these odd rules was new to me! If it wasn't for you I would not have been hable to play! Now I can! Thanks also to the Internet that can make these conversations possible!!

    Louis from Montréal, Qc

    1. You are most welcome - hope you have some fun gaming with them!