This recent Superbowl Sunday WR had several gaming friends over for miniatures, game watching, commercial watching, and seasonal food. The scenario played was his recently blogged Battle of Aboukir 1799 write-up and historical notes, surely a game scenario rarely played on the miniature tabletop. Dan and Daniel formed the French command player team. David, Rex, and WR formed the turban head team.
The starting historical setup shows the Ottomans busy entrenching themselves on the Aboukir peninsula. With their transport fleet further offshore (not present on tabletop), only a few nuisance arab gunboat dhow sail about on the inshore tabletop waves. The grand 6×8 foot tabletop view below…. from the tip of the Aboukir peninsula and small fort to the peninsula arrival table end of the French Armee d’Orient.
Scenario tabletop for the forthcoming Battle of Aboukir 1799 game.
The landed Ottoman Army of Rhodes in their seaside camp and 2nd Line of defenses consisted of: Four units of Sekhan infantry, Greek Martolos skirmishers (tribal), two units of Azapas marines, a unit of Deniz marines, and two mixed positional batteries. The Ottoman Reserve positioned in the camp zone consisted of 4 Janissary Seban otras with their rayas skirmisher detachment and Mustapha Pasha’s personal retainer guard.
The Ottoman Aboukir fort, camp with Janissary reserves, then the 2nd Line positions at scenario start.
Forward of the Ottoman 2nd Line was their 1st Line of defense. Two low-grade hilltop redoubts with more Sekhan defenders in each, another unit of Sekhan infantry near the small village, a supportive Sekhan unit near the sandhill redoubt, a token battery of six mixed positional cannon, and a thin skirmisher (tribal) unit of Greek Martolos doing a poor job of linking the two redoubts.
The Ottoman 1st Line of weak defenses. French arrive upper right.
The arriving French Armee d’Orient starts with several commands on the scenario tabletop at start. The first leading French commands, from left to right facing the Ottomans were; d’Estaing’s brigade consisting of the 4th Demi-brigade Legere (DBL), the 61st Demi-brigade (DB), the 75th DB, and attached foot 8 pdr. battery. Murat’s advance guard cavalry occupied the forward center and consisted of the 3rd & 14th Dragoons with a 4 pdr. horse artillery battery. The division of Lannes’ formed on the right with 22nd DBL, the 13th DB, the 69th DB, and attached 8 pdr. foot battery.
Forming the second line and reserve is Lanusse’s division consisting of 18th DB, 32nd DB, and attached foot battery. Alongside was Army d’Orient headquarters with sapper detachment, a small siege artillery battery (24 pdr.) and the train. Last command starting on the field was Bessieres’ reserve cavalry of the Guides & Chasseur sqn’s. Off tabletop and due to arrive during the afternoon is Kleber’s division with 2nd DBL, 25th DB, and 75th DB. Davout’s screening detachment with 7th Hussars and dromedaries complete the French army.
Armee d’Orient arriving view to engage the Ottoman starting at 0900 hour.