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Monday, June 22, 2015

10 March 1813 – Battle of Donauworth

Tactical map of battle area

Background to battle
1 and 3 Austrian corps launch surprise attack over river Leech
9 French hold Donauworth.   12 French react to attack
Austrian – 26400 infantry, 2000 cavalry, 60 guns
French – 27200 infantry, 2000 cavalry, 60 guns

Table at start of wargame

All four corps start on the table
The river is fordable by infantry and cavalry at half normal move rate and disordered
The bridge can be crossed by all arms in column of march at normal move rate and formed.

Austrians cross river behind a determined cavalry screen
The Bavarian and Baden corps advance to engage the Austrians
The cavalry on both sides repeatedly charge the enemy horse
Each melee is a draw, both sides withdraw to rally and then charge again
The Austrian infantry are under heavy artillery fire, but escape any casualties
2nd Austrian corps advance and force the Bavarians back into the town
2 Austrian cavalry charge guns, gunners retreat into nearby square
1st Austrian corps advance to engage Baden
Baden cavalry charge and rout Austrian hussars
Austrian infantry advance and engage in skirmish fight with Baden infantry
Baden artillery pound grenadier square, who hold despite 30% casualties

The battle is decided when Austrian infantry deploy into line and advance
They win firefight against Baden infantry in column
One brigade routs, two more are shaken
Baden commander orders a general retreat

The Austrians have crossed the river and are firmly in command of the west bank
The Bavarians/Baden have lost 3200 infantry, 100 cavalry and 100 gunners
The Austrians have lost 2800 infantry and 100 cavalry

The Austrians have won a convincing victory
At nightfall 9th Bavarian corps still hold Donauworth
With the Baden retreat they are in danger of being surrounded
They retreat under cover of darkness

Battle Summary
With the element of surprise the Austrians send their cavalry to hold the west bank of the river Lech.   Their artillery cross the bridge and the infantry ford the river.

The Baden and Bavarian cavalry advance to pin them on the river bank.   Despite repeated cavalry charges, the Austrians manage to establish and then expand their bridge head.

As the Austrians advance they come under heavy fire from the enemy artillery.   Despite this they continue to advance, and the Bavarian infantry retreat into Donauworth.  Their cavalry are routed and their gunners abandon their guns.

The main Austrian attack is now switched to the Baden.   Despite heavy casualties the Austrian infantry continue to advance and engage in an inconclusive skirmish fight with the Baden infantry.  

The battle is decided when the Austrian infantry form line, advance and defeat the Baden columns in a fire fight.

The Austrians lost 2900 casualties and have one brigade in rout and one shaken
The Bavarian lost 3400 casualties and have two brigades in rout and two shaken.

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