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Total War: Shogun 2 Heaven » Forums » Bardic Circle - War Stories & AAR forum » A Crown for the Wolves - Saxony ETW AAR
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Topic Subject:A Crown for the Wolves - Saxony ETW AAR
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EnemyofJupitor
HG Alumnus Superbus
posted 04-18-13 12:37 PM EDT (US)         

A Crown for the Wolves


A Saxony AAR on Empire: Total War Darthmod


Saxony starts as a one province Protestant German state. An ancient Electorate of the Holy Roman Empire, it has been ruled for centuries by the House of Wettin from its capital, the relatively prosperous city of Dresden. Situated in a melting pot of small German fiefs between the Hapsburg Holy Roman Emperors and the King In Prussia, it has a small army and not much infrastructure to speak of. The rising fortunes of its rulers have also hit something of a roadblock recently, in a political storm that has Europe talking.

Updated on Sundays unless otherwise warned.

  • Reasserting Saxony
  • The Bavarian Campaign – The Battle of Erfurt
  • The Bavarian Campaign – The March on Munich, Gauss’ Rise to Government and The Bavarian Revolt
  • The Polish Campaign, the Württemberg declaration of war and the War of the Spanish Succession
  • The Württemberg Campaign- The Battle of Nuremburg, the Battle of Ilshofe, and the siege of Stuttgart
  • The Dresden Campaign, the Battle of Chemnitz, and Westphalia declares war
  • The Rhineland Campaigns- The second and third sieges of Stuttgart
  • The Rhineland Campaigns- the Election of the Holy Roman Emperor
  • The Rhineland Campaigns- the sieges of Strasbourg and Cologne, the Westphalian Rising, and the French Counterattack
  • The Rhineland Campaigns- The Battle of Nancy
  • The Final Rhineland Campaign and the Battle of Flanders, The Swedish Wars and the Nachlassen

    Notable Persons


  • Elector Fredrick August I - Elector of Saxony (1694- ) and Kaiser of the Holy Roman Emperor (1714- )
  • Johannes Gauss - First Lord of Government (1703- ), leader of the initial opposition to August's designs on Poland and frequent critic of the Elector
  • Jan Kallenbach - Lord Chief Justice (1703- ), close ally of August
  • Karl Marx - Lord Chancellor (1701- ), from an aristocratic merchant family, encouraging the industrialization of Saxony
  • August Erlanger - Lord Secretary of War (1704- ), native Prussian, architect of the modern Saxon army
  • Sebastian Smeltzer - Senior Saxon general (1702- ), noted for the Pacification of Bavaria and Wurttemberg, the retaking of Dresden, his strategic maneuvering and personal bravery in battle. From a noble family, was colonel of the 1st Royal Regiment by his early 20s.
  • Dietrich Pirngruber - Saxon General (1713- ), former Colonel of the Karabiniergarde and a son of a court favorite, noted for his defence of Stuttgart, the battle of Nancy, unorthodox skirmishing tactics and his diaries
  • Friedrich Schnabel - Colonel of the 1st Royal Regiment (1703- ), noted for the relief of the second siege of Stuttgart
  • Oskar Renke - Colonel of the 5th Nuremburg (1713-1717), noted for the relief of the second siege of Stuttgart

  • King Stanislaw I - King of Poland-Lithuania (1700- ), succeeding August
  • Emperor Leopold I - Archduke of Austria, Holy Roman Emperor (1658-1714), an instigator of the War of the Spanish Succession and an ally of Saxony
  • King Louis XIV - King of France and Navarre (1654-1717), "The Sun King", an instigator of the War of the Spanish Succession and enemy of Saxony and Austria
  • Maximilian II Emanuel - Former Elector of Bavaria (1679-1704), ally of France and in exile in Paris
  • Eberhard Ludwig I - Former Duke of Wurttemberg (1692-1709), ally of France and in exile in Paris
  • Joseph Clemens of Bavaria - Archbishop of Cologne (1688-1715), ally of France, prisoner in Dresden
  • Archduke Joseph I - Archduke of Austria (1714- ), had a public spat with August over the Imperial Crown upon August's surprise election. Reluctant ally of Saxony
  • George I - King of Great Britain (1712- ) and Elector of Hannover (1698- ), ally of Saxony and Prussia
  • Frederick William I - King In Prussia (1714- )
  • King Louis XV - King of France and Navarre (1717- ), claimant to the Spanish throne, an enemy of Saxony and Austria
  • Karl XII - King of Sweden (1697- ), attempting to expand into Germany at the expense of Prussia and Saxony

    And I shall go Softly into the Night Taking my Dreams As will You

    [This message has been edited by EnemyofJupitor (edited 12-21-2013 @ 09:19 AM).]

  • AuthorReplies:
    Legion Of Hell
    Centurion
    posted 04-18-13 06:03 PM EDT (US)     1 / 75       
    EoJ, it has been a while since you have entered the lands of the Bardic Circle. I guess it has given you plenty of time to improve your grammar. (Old TWH joke)

    But playing as Saxony will be intriguing: you have Prussia, Austria and France circling around you like thieves in the night eager to encroach upon your lands not to mention the smaller German states as well. However, I look forward to your AAR!

    General Rawlinson- This is most unsatisfactory. Where are the Sherwood Foresters? Where are the East Lancashires on the right?

    Brigadier-General Oxley- They are lying out in No Man's Land, sir. And most of them will never stand again.

    Two high ranking British generals discussing the fortunes of two regiments after the disastrous attack at Aubers Ridge on the 9th May 1915.
    EnemyofJupitor
    HG Alumnus Superbus
    posted 04-18-13 06:28 PM EDT (US)     2 / 75       
    Yes, it has been a while, hasn't it? I think my last one I shot off a quick 20-turn one that Migrated Sicily to the Holy Land. I still have difficulty trying not to overstretch the poor commas, but there you go.

    As for you, I remember you sending me drafts of your first war stories and being all nervous about it. Now you never leave the place! Good times

    And I shall go Softly into the Night Taking my Dreams As will You
    DominicusUltimus
    Legate
    posted 04-18-13 08:52 PM EDT (US)     3 / 75       
    It has been a very long time since I've read any of your works EoJ. Really looking forward to reading about your conquests, and I hope you stay motivated enough to give this AAR a proper conclusion

    "Life is more fun when you are insane. Just let go occasionally".- yakcamkir 12:14
    "It is not numbers, but vision that wins wars." - Antiochus VII Sidetes
    "My magic screen is constantly bombarded with nubile young things eager to please these old eyes. This truly is a wonderful period in which to exist! - Terikel Grayhair
    Angel of Total War: Rome II Heaven and the Total War: Attila Forums
    Awesome Eagle
    Spear of Mars
    (id: awesomated88)
    posted 04-19-13 02:29 AM EDT (US)     4 / 75       
    *gets giddy with excitement*

    Haven't seen a ETW AAR in ages! looking forward to this! Expect an announcement in the Podcast..

    Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it- George Santayana
    History is a guide to navigation in perilous times. History is who we are and why we are the way we are- David C. McCullough
    Wars not make one great- Yoda
    Legion Of Hell
    Centurion
    posted 04-19-13 04:09 AM EDT (US)     5 / 75       
    As for you, I remember you sending me drafts of your first war stories and being all nervous about it. Now you never leave the place! Good times.
    Good times indeed!

    General Rawlinson- This is most unsatisfactory. Where are the Sherwood Foresters? Where are the East Lancashires on the right?

    Brigadier-General Oxley- They are lying out in No Man's Land, sir. And most of them will never stand again.

    Two high ranking British generals discussing the fortunes of two regiments after the disastrous attack at Aubers Ridge on the 9th May 1915.
    EnemyofJupitor
    HG Alumnus Superbus
    posted 04-19-13 04:47 AM EDT (US)     6 / 75       

    Reasserting Saxony



    Elector Fredrick Augustus I recently converted to Catholicism in a pragmatic move (some would say cynical) to gain the Crown of Poland. Upon him winning the election, he immediately set about building up a power base, and his subjects, proud Lutherans, did not take kindly to becoming secondary concerns to a Catholic backwater. Regardless, the Prince-Elector’s possessions were united under one crown, and Saxony now officially belonged to the Crown of Poland, an independent state no longer. But as the 18th Century began, the mayors, bishops and powerful land owners of Saxony resented being squeezed for taxes and resources in order to pacify the wild polish frontiers, and when a Saxon regiment was massacred by prepared townsfolk in Poland the great men of Saxony had enough. Rallying around a politician by name of Johannes Gauss, they presented August with an ultimatum- Saxony or Poland.


    August didn’t fancy his chances of keeping the Polish Throne without a secure base in Saxony to fall back on, and indeed another challenger quickly forced his hand in the matter. Declaring himself Stanislaw I, the pretender rallied support and marched on Warsaw. This helpfully reduced the King’s options to Saxony or nothing, so he relinquished the crown to the victorious Stanislaw. However, the newly enthroned Polish King smelt blood- Saxony, though underdeveloped, was rich for Polish tastes, and seemed to lack in the military department- a single regiment, some outdated cannon, and even a reliance on pikes! Furthermore, weren’t the realms of Saxony and Poland now supposed to be joined? Saxons pointed to the absurdity of that last argument, as the legalities of personal union simply didn’t work like that, but from Stanislaw’s point of view the attempted conquest of Saxony in order to reclaim what was rightfully theirs gave a much-needed air of legitimacy to his rule, and Polish magnates promptly fell in line.


    And thus at the dawn of 1701, Poland and Saxony were at war. August had not been idle, however- alliances with Hannover, the Dutch and Great Britain were cemented before the Poles declared war, and furthermore the reigning Holy Roman Emperor, Leopold I of the House of Hapsburg, saw things distinctly from Saxony’s point of view- the birth of a dynamic Austrian-Saxon alliance.
    For now, Saxony was shielded by the might of the Holy Roman Emperor. The Electorate of Saxony, as it was once more, could now concentrate on taking its first steps towards industrialisation and progression from a state lagging behind the others to a front runner in German politics.


    Leipzig became a centre of research and industrial experimentation. Dignitaries from the neighbouring state of Prussia were brought in to help the Saxon military grow, both in size and effectiveness. Plug Bayonets, an innovation of Prussia’s, were introduced and held up as the fruits of this cooperation. The army recruited more men into its ranks, and organised them into regiments of two battalions of line infantry, so that a single section of a battle line may be entrusted to a single regiment used to fighting together, rather than several smaller regiments that may have never met before. A two battalion regiment may also be deployed on lone assignments easier than cobbling together a force on an ad hoc basis to do a similar job. The exception of the two battalion system was the 1st, later Royal, Regiment, which had three Battalions of Line infantry. [I have just realised that I have badly misspelt Battalions to Batallions in many of my screenshots. Cringe and deal with it ] They were also to be named- Regiments had their base of operations scattered throughout Saxon lands, all answerable to Dresden, and generally the name following their regimental number that indicated where this was. The first few regiments were raised and based in Saxony itself, hence the 2nd and 3rd Saxony, but when Saxon holdings grew so regiments began to be raised elsewhere, and their base of operations located accordingly- hence the famed 7th Wurttemberg, or the 10th Koln (Cologne). It was not unheard of for regimental names to change- the 4th and 5th relocated to Bavaria very early in the 18th century, and so changed from Saxon to more local names.

    Names were not limited to regiments, either. Individual battalions also gained nicknames, often to do with a reputation for excelling in a certain way (the 1st Royal Regiment’s 2nd Battalion “Breach Stormers” was one of the earliest ones) or an individual action on the battle field (the 2nd Saxony’s 2nd Battalion styled themselves “Grenadiers” long before a formal Grenadier battalion was introduced to the regiment after getting the better of outnumbering Swedish Grenadiers). If a battalion’s exploits were inspiring enough, the entire regiment might adopt the nickname as a mark of pride- the earliest known instance of this was during the Swedish wars, where the entire first Karabiniergarde took on their first battalion’s nickname to strike fear into their enemy.
    Some officers liked this more personal touch more than others, but the sense of togetherness generated by the new regimental system was cited as part of the reason for the new Saxon army’s effectiveness in battle.
    *****

    And I shall go Softly into the Night Taking my Dreams As will You

    [This message has been edited by EnemyofJupitor (edited 04-20-2013 @ 05:22 AM).]

    EnemyofJupitor
    HG Alumnus Superbus
    posted 04-19-13 04:50 AM EDT (US)     7 / 75       
    I have looked at Afty's AARs for formatting and stuff, but I go for "explain everything the game engine throws at us" in terms of writing

    And I shall go Softly into the Night Taking my Dreams As will You

    [This message has been edited by EnemyofJupitor (edited 04-19-2013 @ 04:51 AM).]

    Terikel Grayhair
    Imperator
    (id: Terikel706)
    posted 04-19-13 08:45 AM EDT (US)     8 / 75       
    It looks well-done so far.

    I wish you luck on your endeavors.

    |||||||||||||||| A transplanted Viking, born a millennium too late. |||||||||||||||||
    |||||||||||||||| Too many Awards to list in Signature, sorry lords...|||||||||||||||||
    |||||||||||||||| Listed on my page for your convenience and envy.|||||||||||||||||
    Somewhere over the EXCO Rainbow
    Master Skald, Order of the Silver Quill, Guild of the Skalds
    Champion of the Sepia Joust- Joust I, II, IV, VI, VII, VIII
    EnemyofJupitor
    HG Alumnus Superbus
    posted 04-19-13 11:31 AM EDT (US)     9 / 75       
    The main challenge at the start from a narrative point of view is the fact Saxony is a protectorate of Poland- it was in Personal Union in 1700 with the first of a couple of Saxon kings on the Polish throne. This worked out well for Saxony in real life (and Dresden has a ton of shiny things dating from this period in the Green Vault), but in game you lack the ability to declare war until you break free of your protectorate status, so from turn one I looked at getting rid of Polish overlordship in order to be able to play normally. This was accomplished by me declaring war on Poland, and not the other way round. I then had to come up with a reasonable excuse to break free of Poland at that time without resorting to a revolution- they're kind of costly businesses and quite possibly suicide early game, especially if the lower classes make a republic rather than the Nobles find a new claimant to the throne...

    The second problem, as LoH alluded to in his post, is being stuck between Austria and Prussia. This is actually my second game at Saxony- the first lasted until about 1708 where I was at war with Prussia and took Berlin. Austria then wanted a piece of the action and declared war, and I then marched on Prague. However, their army is *much* bigger than mine, and in the ensuing battle I'm buggered, the army gone. I sue for peace, get it, but then Prussia decides it's not quite dead yet and pulls a couple of stacks out of nowhere to retake Berlin and Dresden in succession. First game over I've ever had! But it showed just how vital keeping one or both of these two onside is for most of the game.
    Thus, I trade with both and ally with Austria this time- and I'm able to call them in to my Polish war from the off. Austria shielded me mostly from the poles, enabling me to get on with things

    And I shall go Softly into the Night Taking my Dreams As will You
    EnemyofJupitor
    HG Alumnus Superbus
    posted 04-20-13 10:58 AM EDT (US)     10 / 75       

    The Bavarian Campaign – The Battle of Erfurt



    1702- The threatened Polish invasion seems to have receded. In the north, Prussia refuses military access to Poland as part of its technological partnership with Saxony, while in the South the Austrians clash with the Poles who refuse to take no for an answer. It all seems in control, so the Saxons decide to do a little preparation of their own via increasing their industrial output and drill their army a little. What was a little unorthodox about their methods was the fact they combined the two and invaded Bavaria, the industrial heartland of Germany.



    The Holy Roman Emperor was not pleased. Infighting weakened his authority, which was already being stretched by a rabid Poland and the watchful Prussians waiting for a hint of Hapsburg weakness, and Bavaria was an Elector state, no mere lesser principality- should Saxony win they would be able to control two of the votes for the next King of the Romans- but no Reichstacht or official proclamation of disapproval followed. It is possible Leopold didn’t think Saxony would be able to make much progress, and find out they’d bitten off more than they could chew by themselves, and a quick look at military facilities and sheer numbers did indicate that Saxony would have to sue for peace sooner than later. Things would change, however, with the sudden assassination of Johann von Bellegarde, and the rise of the man who would take his place.
    Von Bellegarde was one of the men present when August was presented with the choice of realms in 1700. A military man, he held his position by hereditary right rather than distinction in battle but none-the-less participated in Prussian-led reforms of the Saxon armed forces. He still had a penchant for using pikes, and didn’t think much of Saxony’s inability to field large amounts of cavalry either, but his devotion to Saxony was absolute, and was given overall command of the campaign to bring Bavaria to heel. His plan centred on causing as much destruction as possible in the north in order to draw a response, beat them in battle and march on a much more lightly defended Munich, before using the centralised position to mop up in inevitable pockets of resistance. A simple plan, but none-the-less it depended heavily on von Bellegarde’s ability to beat the opposition in battle, and for that reason the 2000-man army mustered was about as great as Saxony could afford to send out at the time. The 1st and 2nd Regiments were accompanied by the remains of an old division of soldiers, scarce better than militia, while another regiment was being recruited for the defence of Saxony. Pikemen and outdated cannon accompanied these new units- it seemed Saxony would not jump head first into the modern world but would take tentative steps.
    We’ll never know if von Bellegarde was up to the task, however- in the dead of winter he was found dead in his tent with knife cut in his throat. It is unknown which party was responsible- internal backstabbing is very unlikely, as the man was respected within his own borders, but the finger of blame points towards either Bavarians or Polish agents, both of which had an interest in seeing Saxony fail in their endeavours, though Bavaria’s need was more immediate in this case.
    It seemed the campaign would fail before it even began, but August demanded that the men still marched- the forced abdication of the Polish throne after only so recently ascending it still smarted, and he needed to recover some of his prestiege, so the burden of command fell to von Bellegarde’s second in command, the Colonel of the newly minted 1st Regiment, Sebastian Smeltzer.



    A man of noble birth, he was able to buy his way into a comfortable Captainship until Prussian military advisors picked up on his knack of tactical awareness and earmarked him for a greater command. From there, a fortunately-timed scandal involving his superiors being involved in forcibly enlisting men into the army left him in command of the 1st Royal Regiment at the very young age of 20 as Saxony declared war on Bavaria, and von Bellegarde picked him to become part of his staff. His rapid rise up the chain of command is unusual in this early part of the 18th century, and he was almost certainly one of the first benefactors of the new ideas being installed in the army about promotion on merit. This new-found ethos was tempered, however, by Saxon respect for the aristocracy, and it is fortunate Smeltzer had family wealth to back him on these first crucial steps to become the Duke of Wurttemberg, and a great Saxon hero.

    His command did not get off to a good start, however- insisting on marching at the vanguard of the army, Smeltzer decided on riding ahead a little to see an army in front of him outside Erfurt.




    [The above is a picture of modern Erfurt as seen from its fantastic castle, built on a massive hill high above central Germany. It’s probably right at the centre of the country and well worth a visit if you’re driving through at any stage.]
    The Bavarians had not been idle, and an army had been despatched northwards to counter any Saxon advance. Lothar von Thungen was part of the old elite in Bavaria, and took with him a mixed force of cavalry, cannon and foot that was typical of southern German armies of the period. Previously, it was reckoned a Bavarian regiment would beat an equivalent Saxon one due to superior training and morale, but these new regiments were as tightly drilled as the Bavarian elite units left behind at Munich. Bavaria also lacked the new bayonets, relying on cavalry swords to smash their way into melee, and had less cannon present. In short, Bavaria had rested on their laurels, but they still outnumbered the foe, had superior mobility and even had the drop on the Saxons, while the new regiments of their enemies were untried and untested in battle- training counts for little when men forget it due to the amount of bullets around them. A competent commander with a basic grasp of tactics such as von Thungen would have regarded a matchup such as this winnable.



    Smeltzer retreated from the Bavarians to link up with his army whilst under enemy cannon fire. His first priority was to lay down a base of fire that would disrupt the Bavarian advance while the Saxons readied themselves, and his cannon un-limbered and set to work.



    Smeltzer had ten pieces of artillery, and they also had the juicy target of a Bavarian force closely packed in readiness to smash through enemy lines. The resulting barrage tore into blue ranks, cowing them at the precise moment the Saxon line was most vulnerable. Smeltzer ordered his drummers and flautists to play louder and cheer, sapping the enemy’s willingness to charge the Saxons until all his army was in position. Though the infantry refused to advance, von Thungen was no fool, and let his cavalry loose on what he still believed to be a ragged and unready line.



    Two cavalry units were sent to harry them. The first, in typical hot-headed fashion seen throughout the early modern period from cavalry, went straight towards cannon fire in a bid to silence the guns and gain glory, while the second took a more enterprising route around the side. Alas for these fine men, the centre was guarded by



    Pikemen- while regarded as obsolete they were still a deadly threat against cavalry, and Smeltzer had set them where he predicted enemy horsemen would strike first. His guess was spot on, and a furious melee erupted in the centre, but ultimately the Pikemen managed to repel the attackers. The second unit were equally out done by Smeltzer- the surviving unit of the old regiments was guarding the flanks with fixed bayonets, and thwarted the flanking manoeuvre. However, they could not finish the job, and a battalion of the 2nd was fed in to the fight.
    The Bavarian infantry soon followed, and there they engaged in a musket duel with the 1st and 2nd Regiments.



    For many on both sides, this was their first real taste of action but neither side gave an inch. The Bavarian cannon inflicted losses in the Saxon centre, while the Bavarian infantry tended to clump together that gave the Saxon cannon a very nice target.



    The Bavarian cavalry in the centre were joined by infantry, inflicting greater losses on the pikemen and necessitating the intervention of the General’s guard itself, but they were eventually repelled. The right flank was still tied up by the enemy cavalry, which refused to die quietly in the face of massed ranks of infantry, and on the left a flanking manoeuvre was dealt with by the 1st Battalion of the 1st Royals. Things were about to take a decisive turn, however, when a lucky cannon shot smashed its way into the Bavarian General’s staff, killing Lothar himself in one fell swoop.




    The Bavarians assaulting the centre of the line quailed at the news and ran, leaving the pikemen and Smeltzer to intercept another infantry battalion attempting to silence the guns. The Pikemen then waded into the firelight, hoping to capitalise on the shaken morale of the enemy with a shock charge but were routed by the deceased von Thungen’s bodyguard, who attempted to avenge their fallen commander. However, it was too little too late, as the entire Bavarian left collapsed, leaving the right pinned under the musketry of the 1st and the cannon vulnerable to a cavalry charge led by Smeltzer. The battle was wrapped up by the 1st charging home against a dispirited and spent Bavarian force.

    i) ii)
    iii) iv) v)

    The two armies were initially evenly matched, but casualties of the Battle of Erfurt were 1400 Bavarians against 800 Saxons. With his timely personal cavalry charges and perceived courage when under fire, Smeltzer began to cultivate a bit of a reputation.



    *****

    And I shall go Softly into the Night Taking my Dreams As will You

    [This message has been edited by EnemyofJupitor (edited 04-20-2013 @ 11:22 AM).]

    Terikel Grayhair
    Imperator
    (id: Terikel706)
    posted 04-20-13 12:42 PM EDT (US)     11 / 75       
    Greta battle there, EoJ.



    I liked this intallment very much.

    |||||||||||||||| A transplanted Viking, born a millennium too late. |||||||||||||||||
    |||||||||||||||| Too many Awards to list in Signature, sorry lords...|||||||||||||||||
    |||||||||||||||| Listed on my page for your convenience and envy.|||||||||||||||||
    Somewhere over the EXCO Rainbow
    Master Skald, Order of the Silver Quill, Guild of the Skalds
    Champion of the Sepia Joust- Joust I, II, IV, VI, VII, VIII
    DominicusUltimus
    Legate
    posted 04-20-13 04:29 PM EDT (US)     12 / 75       
    I wholeheartedly agree with Terikel. Fantastic battle and updates EoJ, and I love it whenever a stray cannonball manages to take out the enemy general

    "Life is more fun when you are insane. Just let go occasionally".- yakcamkir 12:14
    "It is not numbers, but vision that wins wars." - Antiochus VII Sidetes
    "My magic screen is constantly bombarded with nubile young things eager to please these old eyes. This truly is a wonderful period in which to exist! - Terikel Grayhair
    Angel of Total War: Rome II Heaven and the Total War: Attila Forums
    EnemyofJupitor
    HG Alumnus Superbus
    posted 04-22-13 02:04 PM EDT (US)     13 / 75       
    Yes, it was a bit bizarre- I was aiming for the cannon, some distance behind. Still, nice to get a good battle early Ta for the kind words chaps


    I'll attempt to update Sundays and Wednesdays, both for fear of updating too quickly for me to write up stuff and to stop me having to play through my exam period when I should be studying! I've got to about 1827 or so on 2 turns a year, and I have a few written up ready to be uploaded, with the rest bullet pointed what I want to write about (including politics and stuff ). Should be fun

    And I shall go Softly into the Night Taking my Dreams As will You

    [This message has been edited by EnemyofJupitor (edited 04-22-2013 @ 02:06 PM).]

    EnemyofJupitor
    HG Alumnus Superbus
    posted 04-24-13 04:02 AM EDT (US)     14 / 75       

    The Bavarian Campaign – The March on Munich, Gauss’ Rise to Government and The Bavarian Revolt



    1703. The Saxons march south, crossing the Danube and encountering a slightly smaller force of Bavarians, this time made up of more elite troops. However, the general Rudolf Schmitz proved unable to marshal his forces competently. The initial cavalry charge, which caused such damage in the previous engagement, was this time made against troops that were already in formation, and were repelled without a single casualty. The small amount of enemy cannon was left at the mercy of an onrushing Smeltzer, whilst attempts by enemy infantry to relieve the situation were driven off by the 2nd Saxony.



    Eventually, the Saxons could leisurely walk up the hill while pounding the unfortunate Bavarians with cannon and were able to overpower them in the subsequent firefight and bayonet charge. Rudolph, however, lived to see another day, and escaped Smeltzer and the pikemen. He fled and conceded the field to the Saxons with 500 dead, with only 120 Saxon deaths.


    Despite the loss of their field army the Bavarians defended Munich in great numbers, and would make a formidable force tucked behind protective walls. Smeltzer wrote back to Dresden, asking for more men while promising the successful conclusion of the campaign was near. He then withdrew to northern Bavaria, securing his supply lines so reinforcements could join up without having to march through hostile territory.



    At this time, August was going through something of a governmental reshuffle. In a concession to his Saxon magnates, he replaced several of his inner circle of government with key members of the opposition to his Polish designs- thus, Johannes Gauss, the instigator of the extraordinary meeting, was installed as First Lord of Government, whilst installed in the Treasury was Karl Marx [I know, I know], a noted aristocrat that had a habit of buttressing his already considerable fortune with dabbling in mercantile initiatives, something most nobles thought beneath them. He replaced Jan Kallenbach, regarded as the most important of August’s supporters. Widely believed to have been the source of the idea to claim Poland, his removal from the office of the Treasury was one of the key demands put to the Elector, but August was not about to give up on his close advisor that easily. His subsequent appointment to the post of Lord Chief Justice enraged the opposition as much as it would be expected, and was regarded as a fairly unwise move by the Elector in the fragile political climate he was working in- a plot to discredit Kallenbach by some of the more radical elements in Saxon politics via inciting riots in the capital, with the potential for a very large loss of life, was foiled only by the outbreak of national pride felt due to the success of the Bavarian campaign. The recent military victories eclipsed the unease the people felt about Kallenbach, who rather sensibly shunned the public eye during his first few months of tenure until his next public speech in 1704, recommending that taxes for the lower class should be cut to lead to greater growth. This motion was obviously very popular, but modern historians queried the fact that a Lord Chief Justice was delivering a speech on taxes and not the Lord of the Treasury. From personal letters sealed in the Green Vault in Dresden dating from this time, it is clear that August and Kallenbach were acting to rehabilitate the latter’s unsavoury reputation into something of a populist in a bid to keep August’s favoured advisor at court.



    The Lord Secretary of War, unusually, was not a native Saxon. August Erlanger was born a Prussian, and was part of the envoy sent to retrain the Saxon army. However, he discovered an affinity with the land he was sent to, and within a short year gained not only a residence, but a wife and special citizenship. He was encouraged by the new Government to write a report about the large scale reorganisation of the armed forces, and upon its completion was given the role of Secretary of War in order to carry out his own recommendations.

    The Bavarian campaign was the first test of his new proposals, so Erlanger reacted quickly to Smeltzer’s request for more men. New regiments were recruited and cavalry raised, the latter quickly joining up with Smeltzer. The 3rd and 4th were also sent to Bavaria, but Smeltzer spotted another easy target before they could arrive. Rudolf Schmitz was spotted patrolling the southern shores of the Danube at the head of a weak detachment that represented most of Bavaria’s active military. Rather than face them in the streets of Munich, Smeltzer took the opportunity to weaken the Bavarians further, whilst a rapid response mounted by the Bavarians to help extract Schmitz from his predicament was simply too small, and acted only to add to the butcher’s bill.



    The battle took place around a small town built on a hill called Reichertshofen. The 1st deployed to the west of the town, while the 2nd and Smeltzer’s new cavalry took care of the reinforcements. Both parties were supported from range with cannon. Smeltzer’s plan was to use the Pikemen and old regiments, now formally classed as “Militia”, to work their way through the town and surprise the Bavarians by falling on their flanks. However, the terrain leading down from the town to the plain on which the battle was fought was too steep for the infantry to tackle, and so the 1st was left to match up against the main force by themselves. As the two lines engaged, Smeltzer saw that Schmitz had strayed too far from the protection of his infantry in a bid to launch a flanking manoeuvre, and quickly charged with his own bodyguard. Rudolph Schmitz died as the charge hit home, and the rest of his bodyguard soon followed. The Bavarian line infantry, however, continued to engage the 1st.



    To the east, the cavalry quickly neutralised the enemy artillery and occupied the enemy infantry until the 2nd could pin them with musket fire. With the “relief force” now being dealt with, the Saxon cavalry streaked across the battlefield to hit the line infantry in the west from behind, throwing them into confusion. Smeltzer immediately ordered a general advance, and a smart bayonet charge left the Saxons as victors with a mere 150 casualties.




    Munich was all that was left between Smeltzer and victory, and in November 1703 he began a siege. An initial sally was repulsed with 500 Saxons dead to 1200 Bavarians, now mostly desperate men with guns. In the spring Smeltzer judged his preparations complete, and with the 3rd and 4th now under his command he assaulted the city. The garrison was sapped in strength from the sally and desertion, and the Elector, Maximilian II Emanuel, had already fled the city a month previously. Smeltzer took command of Munich with only 150 casualties. Now all he had to do was hold it.



    August was pleased by the outcome of the campaign, and encouraged by the performance of the regiments under Smeltzer’s command. He realised that this new army, properly maintained, could put Saxony above other minor German states and nearly onto a par with Austria and Prussia. The Duke started to privately discuss with his cabinet the possibility of asserting some kind of hold over other smaller states, be it through friendship or the sword, but first Saxony had to deal with their new conquest- Bavaria wasn’t pacified by a long shot. The Nobility would be appeased after they saw repairs being made to the infrastructure, and assurances made that their pockets wouldn’t be impacted on too harshly, but for a German lower class used to national self-rule a foreign occupation were intolerable.
    Back in Saxony, and Leipzig’s military academy had been looking at ways to make outdated Saxon cannon more effective. The result was Canister shot, which would have a very nasty impact on Saxony’s foes soon enough. This new found ability of cannon to wreak havoc in close quarters meant that a different way of deploying artillery was being formed, one that had the cannon on the front line next to the line regiment in order to take advantage of this new projectile as much as possible.



    Unrest in Bavaria continued. In 1705 major riots in Nuremberg brought about a halt in industrial production in May. Saxon officials in the area dismissed it as a one off event, and were badly caught off guard when in October dissent that had bubbled away under the surface for almost a year erupted into a full rebellion. Raising their flag, the rebels took Nuremberg for their own, and dared the Saxons to respond. Unfortunately for them, Smeltzer had been preparing for such a revolt ever since taking Munich, and had retained all of his regiments of the Bavarian campaign under his command. He marched north straight away at full strength, knowing that intimidation would cause many to melt away before him. There were, however, a hard core of Bavarian nationalists and former military men that would not be swayed so easily.
    Just shy of a thousand men, the rebel force was confronted by Smeltzer’s army of four regiments with cannon and cavalry in support. The Bavarians didn’t stand a chance. Saxon artillery reduced the enemy cannons to rubble, and prompted a wild cavalry charge from the Bavarians. This was repelled easily by the relatively green 4th regiment, and the Saxons advanced to within firing distance of the Bavarians. In a very short fight, the rebels fled in the face of organised musketry, and the revolt was crushed within a few short months.





    Smeltzer knew that despite the armed rebellion being crushed, delicate manoeuvres must be made in order to not further incense the Bavarians. Writing to the Lord Chief Justice, he recommended that integration rather than subjection would be the key here, and Kallenbach agreed. Bavarians would keep their jobs in the foundries of the land, and several industrialists were invited to Leipzig for purposes of innovation. The most surprising move was to relocate the 4th and newly recruited 6th to Bavaria, and basing their recruitment on the local populations. It was a bold move, and one that paid off handsomely, as the people came round to what Dresden was telling them- they had a stake in this new society, and could actively defend it if they chose.
    Thus, the 4th was renamed the 4th Bavaria, while the 6th was now Nuremberg [Or Numberg with an invisible umlaut in the game screenshots], the old centre of trouble being particularly singled out in integration policies.

    *****

    And I shall go Softly into the Night Taking my Dreams As will You

    [This message has been edited by EnemyofJupitor (edited 04-24-2013 @ 04:03 AM).]

    Terikel Grayhair
    Imperator
    (id: Terikel706)
    posted 04-24-13 05:04 AM EDT (US)     15 / 75       
    This continues to both entertain and intrigue me.

    Well done, chap.

    I like the way the politics are worked in as reasons for decisions being made- as opposed to military actions dictating policies.

    As stated above, intriguing.

    |||||||||||||||| A transplanted Viking, born a millennium too late. |||||||||||||||||
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    Somewhere over the EXCO Rainbow
    Master Skald, Order of the Silver Quill, Guild of the Skalds
    Champion of the Sepia Joust- Joust I, II, IV, VI, VII, VIII
    EnemyofJupitor
    HG Alumnus Superbus
    posted 04-24-13 06:01 AM EDT (US)     16 / 75       
    Thanks, it's basically how I play total war when given the chance- tis far more entertaining
    It's sometimes a bit of a challenge to explain away some of the events you're not part of, so I usually don't extend it that far, but for the purposes of this aar I've had to come up with a suitable explanation for the next bit that I'm quite happy with- and if you like me working in politics into it hopefully you will too! It gives a nice overreaching narrative to the next decade...

    And I shall go Softly into the Night Taking my Dreams As will You
    Legion Of Hell
    Centurion
    posted 04-24-13 07:52 AM EDT (US)     17 / 75       
    Love the political machinations behind the military campaign. It is good that you are pacifying the smaller German states as it will give you a platform to fight the bigger fish that is Prussia and possibly Austria.

    General Rawlinson- This is most unsatisfactory. Where are the Sherwood Foresters? Where are the East Lancashires on the right?

    Brigadier-General Oxley- They are lying out in No Man's Land, sir. And most of them will never stand again.

    Two high ranking British generals discussing the fortunes of two regiments after the disastrous attack at Aubers Ridge on the 9th May 1915.
    Awesome Eagle
    Spear of Mars
    (id: awesomated88)
    posted 04-24-13 12:47 PM EDT (US)     18 / 75       
    A great continuation! Keep up the good work EOJ!

    Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it- George Santayana
    History is a guide to navigation in perilous times. History is who we are and why we are the way we are- David C. McCullough
    Wars not make one great- Yoda
    Punic Hebil
    Centurion
    (id: Punic Hoplite)
    posted 04-24-13 02:22 PM EDT (US)     19 / 75       
    May I venture to ask which mod you used to allow you to play as Saxony? Good work on the AAR though, been forever since I've seen a new ETW one

    Edit: I cannot into reading

    I am the Carthaginian who became an angel, and surrendered his wings for a life on the sea of battle.

    My magic screen is constantly bombarded with nubile young things eager to please these old eyes. This truly is a wonderful period in which to exist! - Terikel the Deflowerer

    [This message has been edited by Punic Hebil (edited 04-24-2013 @ 02:23 PM).]

    SongsOfBeitar
    Ashigaru
    posted 04-24-13 02:35 PM EDT (US)     20 / 75       
    really cool. What year does the game end (I don't own/never played etw)?
    EnemyofJupitor
    HG Alumnus Superbus
    posted 04-24-13 02:55 PM EDT (US)     21 / 75       
    Pssh, like I'm going to get that far
    I think it's 1800. However, I'm going to see if I can change my settings from 2 turns per year to four just to have a bit more time once I reach a certain stage, I think- this initial build up should take a lot more time year wise, as it's a small faction to start with. Once I start getting colonies and stuff, however, I'll be a major power, and capturing more territory in smaller amounts of time won't be such a stretch

    Punic: Yeah, Afty's ones were really the only ones that got properly serviced that I can remember (and apologies to anyone who managed to pull off an awesome one without me being aware...) Due to the Government system, colonies, naming of regiments and stuff, however, I believe Empire has the greatest story telling ability if approached from a certain way- it's different from Shogun and Rome where it's family trees of generals doing great things, and it's easier to emotionally invest in their progress due to that, but you can imagine as I have here someone buying a commission and ending up in command, or coming up through the ranks Sharpe Style.

    I dunno, I just like making stuff up

    And I shall go Softly into the Night Taking my Dreams As will You

    [This message has been edited by EnemyofJupitor (edited 04-24-2013 @ 02:59 PM).]

    DominicusUltimus
    Legate
    posted 04-24-13 03:58 PM EDT (US)     22 / 75       
    Another excellent update. This almost makes me want to tear myself away from EB and give ETW another run

    "Life is more fun when you are insane. Just let go occasionally".- yakcamkir 12:14
    "It is not numbers, but vision that wins wars." - Antiochus VII Sidetes
    "My magic screen is constantly bombarded with nubile young things eager to please these old eyes. This truly is a wonderful period in which to exist! - Terikel Grayhair
    Angel of Total War: Rome II Heaven and the Total War: Attila Forums
    SongsOfBeitar
    Ashigaru
    posted 04-24-13 04:55 PM EDT (US)     23 / 75       
    What's EB, Europa Barbarum?

    Yeah, this is also making me want to play ETW if only my computer was powerful enough.
    EnemyofJupitor
    HG Alumnus Superbus
    posted 04-25-13 02:30 AM EDT (US)     24 / 75       
    Ooh, one more thing, I have the dev cam on, enabling me to zoom right down to floor level to get shots like the last one in the update

    And I shall go Softly into the Night Taking my Dreams As will You
    Aftermath
    HG Alumnus
    posted 04-25-13 12:03 PM EDT (US)     25 / 75       
    Empire is under rated. Enjoying this one EoJ, please keep it up.

    A f t y

    A A R S

    :: The Sun always rises in the East :: Flawless Crowns :: Dancing Days ::

    "We kissed the Sun, and it smiled down upon us."
    EnemyofJupitor
    HG Alumnus Superbus
    posted 04-28-13 01:06 PM EDT (US)     26 / 75       

    The Polish Campaign, the Württemberg declaration of war and the War of the Spanish Succession



    1706. Following the conclusion of the Bavarian campaign, Saxony was in command of one of the industrial heartlands of Germany. As Munich gradually came round to the idea of August I ruling them, so the economy of Saxony picked up. Trade had been established with Austria, Prussia and Hannover, with towns such as Nuremberg finding demand for their goods. Taxes were lowered slightly for the lower classes to promote growth, but gold still replenished the Duchy’s coffers to fund industrial projects and cultural advancement- Bavarian and Saxon industrialists, for instance, reorganised the nation’s farmland with common land enclosures. Johannes Gauss, First Lord of the Government, expressed to the Elector the opinion that in the long term Saxony should endeavor to gain access to a port in order to join in more lucrative sea-based trade, and perhaps even look at the possibility of establishing a profitable colony- other nations had benefited greatly from access to the sea, but German states had not really made an impact in the area.

    Prussia and the western German states expressed concern that the Duchy of Saxony now had two votes in the election of the next Holy Roman Emperor due to controlling another Electoral duchy, but for almost 300 years the election had been won by a Hapsburg anyway and the authority of the Emperor over other German states had been eroded badly since the days of Barbarossa. In reality, Prussia wasn't too interested in an empty title, being more concerned with the more real forms of power, and the smaller German states didn’t have a hope to gain enough popular support to stop the Hapsburg streak. Saxony was seen as a devoted ally to Austria, with their vote for the Hapsburgs all but guaranteed, Germans could not help but feel the status quo hadn’t really changed at all.

    Elsewhere in Europe, France was flexing its muscles. The United Provinces of the Netherlands had declared war on Spain to free Flanders from their grip early in the 18th century, but Spain brought France into the war. When the Spanish were defeated and lost their grip on Flanders, Louis XIV sent an army to steamroll the Dutch into submission. It went better than his wildest dreams- by 1706 France had conquered all the way up to Amsterdam, and dominated Western Europe. It was not the west that concerned August, though, it was the old enemy Stanislaw. Polish armies had broken themselves on the rock that was Austria, and Prussia refused to let them enter their lands due to their partnership with Saxony on the subject of innovating new technologies. Now, as Polish armies once again fell back from Austrian might, August decided that the Polish question needed to be dealt with once and for all.

    Smeltzer was to embark on an ambitious campaign through Austrian-owned Bohemia into Poland itself. Its primary objective was to take Warsaw and force Poland into a humiliating peace treaty, recognising they had no right to rule Saxony. A secondary objective securing West Prussia on the shores of the Baltic to allow the duchy to act on Gauss’ sea trade policy, though it was important that the armed forces were not overstretched in achieving this goal. The idea of expanding eastwards was much more appealing to August than west in light of French dominance- better to let Württemberg and Cologne live undisturbed and act as buffers to the Bourbons than the alternative.



    And so in October 1706 Smeltzer set off towards Poland. He reached Vienna, but just before the new year came about he was forced to stop and turn back for Bavaria- two very large spanners had been thrown into the foreign policy of Saxony.



    Württemberg had watched Smeltzer march away with most of the Saxon army with interest- at their court was Maximilian II Emanuel, and he promised a rich reward in the form ceding some of his territory to Württemberg should they help restore him to his rightful place. As Smeltzer marched into Austria, they saw their chance and promptly declared war. August immediately dispatched riders to catch up with the Saxon army as he desperately sought assurances from Austria that they would remain on side with Saxony, and Leopold manipulated the situation to his advantage- a promise was extracted from August that Austria could count on Saxon assistance in whatever wars Austria would find itself involved in next. It wasn’t to be long until Leopold called on Saxony to honour that promise- a mere matter of months.

    Charles the II of Spain was the only son of King Philip IV, and the product of generations of Hapsburg inbreeding. Noble houses in 16th century Europe had the unfortunate habit of marrying cousins with first cousins, and uncles with nieces in order to keep the sometimes extensive family lands within the dynasty. In Charles’ case, his mother was the niece of his father, and all eight of his great grandparents were descendants of Joanna and Philip I of Castile- all of this led to a genetic pool that was so limited scientists today believe his genome was more homozygous than a child born of two siblings [An extraordinary claim, but Wikipedia cites this paper by G Alvarez et al, published in the journal Plos One in 2009. It’s a bit of an incredible read].This manifested itself in both Charles’ woeful mental and physical capabilities, and his subjects believed him to have been cursed at birth by a witch- something the poor man himself believed.

    His mother acted as regent for most of his reign, but was deposed after promoting several favorites to high office without merit, severely damaging the Spanish Empire’s affairs and plunging it into an economic crisis. Charles suffered a nervous breakdown attempting to repair the damage with his ministers, and died at the age of 42. It is not hard to feel sorry for him, as many of the challenges he faced in day to day life, never mind the running of the kingdom, were the product of his pedigree and not of his own making. In death he had a greater impact than he ever had in life, as the question of his succession unleashed a war.

    Two parties vied for the Spanish throne- the Austrian Hapsburgs in the form of Leopold I and the French Bourbons, who supported Louis XIV’s eldest son, the Dauphin of France- and without some clever diplomacy whichever one won would rule a vast empire that would threaten to upset the balance of power of Europe, alarming observers such as Great Britain and Prussia. A third, more neutral candidate, Joseph of Bavaria, was found, but died of Smallpox in 1699 at the age of 6, heightening the crisis. Philip IV of Spain correctly guessed his son would never have an heir, and directed the line of succession towards Austria in his will, but Charles and his ministers, dominated by pro-French politicians, attempted to find another way and left the kingdom to the Dauphin’s second son Philip, with the condition that should he ascend to the French throne the Spanish crown would instead pass to his younger brother.

    Leopold did not accept this outcome, citing Charles’ mental health, and suggested the will had been made in duress. Upon Charles’ death, two kings of Spain were proclaimed simultaneously- Louis XIV announced Philip was to take the throne, but Leopold pushed forward his son, the Archduke of Austria as the rightful heir and declared war on France November 1706.



    Leopold called on August to return the favour owed, and Saxony entered the War of the Spanish Succession on the Austrian side. To start with the war was fought in northern Italy, with Venice and Austria repelling French land attacks whilst assaulting by sea, so Saxon involvement was very limited. However, Saxony gradually started taking more of an interest in the Rhine area due to Württemberg forcing August to abandon any design of gaining territory in the east, and the resulting Rhineland campaigns eventually became part of the wider conflict.
    *****

    And I shall go Softly into the Night Taking my Dreams As will You

    [This message has been edited by EnemyofJupitor (edited 04-28-2013 @ 01:51 PM).]

    EnemyofJupitor
    HG Alumnus Superbus
    posted 04-28-13 01:46 PM EDT (US)     27 / 75       
    I'm going to only update once a week now, because exams mean writing shall slow The next few years are rather dominated by a domino effect of alliances opening new fronts in the War of the Spanish Succession, tweaked and simplified from real life to give Saxony a nice grand war to get their teeth into
    It also helps explain away Austria declaring war on France, which seemed rather random from the little I could see of the map

    And I shall go Softly into the Night Taking my Dreams As will You

    [This message has been edited by EnemyofJupitor (edited 04-28-2013 @ 01:55 PM).]

    Punic Hebil
    Centurion
    (id: Punic Hoplite)
    posted 04-28-13 03:26 PM EDT (US)     28 / 75       
    Good update By the way, I downloaded Darthmod for Empire, and I didn't get Saxony as an option to play as. I want to try a small nation :P

    I am the Carthaginian who became an angel, and surrendered his wings for a life on the sea of battle.

    My magic screen is constantly bombarded with nubile young things eager to please these old eyes. This truly is a wonderful period in which to exist! - Terikel the Deflowerer
    EnemyofJupitor
    HG Alumnus Superbus
    posted 04-28-13 04:52 PM EDT (US)     29 / 75       
    It must be cb sub mod, then. Have a look at that and other moss supported in the sub mods manager launcher thing

    And I shall go Softly into the Night Taking my Dreams As will You
    SongsOfBeitar
    Ashigaru
    posted 04-29-13 12:25 PM EDT (US)     30 / 75       
    You came up with all that just to explain a declaration of war? That's incredible; well done.
    Terikel Grayhair
    Imperator
    (id: Terikel706)
    posted 04-29-13 12:35 PM EDT (US)     31 / 75       
    A nice twist of plot- I guess Poland will have to wait.

    Nicely written, an enjoyable reading!

    |||||||||||||||| A transplanted Viking, born a millennium too late. |||||||||||||||||
    |||||||||||||||| Too many Awards to list in Signature, sorry lords...|||||||||||||||||
    |||||||||||||||| Listed on my page for your convenience and envy.|||||||||||||||||
    Somewhere over the EXCO Rainbow
    Master Skald, Order of the Silver Quill, Guild of the Skalds
    Champion of the Sepia Joust- Joust I, II, IV, VI, VII, VIII
    EnemyofJupitor
    HG Alumnus Superbus
    posted 04-29-13 04:31 PM EDT (US)     32 / 75       
    Poland does slink back to the shadows for a while, yes- but they do get their time in the limelight at some stage. I'm just finishing writing about them (I'm about 5 years ahead).
    But this is the conflict that ends up giving me most of my battles so far, and hopefully I can work in a knock on effect on central Europe's wars- I've already mentioned Swedish wars for the future which is easy to find a reason for, but the politics after that get really messy!

    And I shall go Softly into the Night Taking my Dreams As will You

    [This message has been edited by EnemyofJupitor (edited 04-30-2013 @ 06:23 AM).]

    EnemyofJupitor
    HG Alumnus Superbus
    posted 05-04-13 05:51 AM EDT (US)     33 / 75       
    Next time... The Württemberg Campaign, including the Battle of Nuremburg and the Battle of Ilshofe.
    Smeltzer rushes west to prevent the Wurttemberg menace, the 6th Nuremburg get a little bit more than they bargain for and a new unit makes its debut- the Karabiniergarde...

    And I shall go Softly into the Night Taking my Dreams As will You
    EnemyofJupitor
    HG Alumnus Superbus
    posted 05-05-13 04:08 AM EDT (US)     34 / 75       

    The Württemberg Campaign- The Battle of Nuremburg, the Battle of Ilshofe, the siege of Stuttgart



    At this stage in time, though, all thought is on defending Bavaria. Württemberg sacked Coburg, a noted university town, soon after the declaration of war, and threatened Nuremburg briefly. New ring bayonets were issued to Saxon regiments, fresh from Leipzig, as Erlanger tried to give the men in the field any advantage over a decidedly modern Württemberg military. However, when Smeltzer intercepted them north of Nuremburg they found that Wurttemberg numbers were smaller than expected.



    Smeltzer deployed his men in a wide line, with the 1st on the left, 2nd and 3rd in the middle, and the 4th on the right. His cavalry and pikes were kept in reserve, but the cannon were on the front line and opened the battle by attempting to flush out the enemy from the forests around a small village. Württemberg cavalry immediately leapt into action but found Saxon infantry guarding the artillery, and were shocked as the 1st unveiled the latest technique from Prussia- the Square Formation.



    Attempts to break through the infantry floundered, as the horses refused to charge into a well organised wall of sharp and pointy bayonets, which then cut down the cavalry where they stood. Taking heavy casualties, the Württemberg cavalry either retreated or fled. Franz Birkenfeld, the enemy general, rallied some horsemen and decided to keep the 1st pinned in position on the left flank so they could not perform a flanking manoeuvre.
    With a Saxon regiment kept away from the main action, the Württemberg infantry engaged the Saxons, but found massed volleys tore into their ranks. Birkenfeld realised that he was outmatched, and attempted a swift charge on the flank of the 2nd while the 1st were still in square formation and unable to intercept in order to turn the tables in his favour- not exactly a bad plan, but he failed to take into account his path took him directly across the face of cannon loaded with canister shot. The general was killed immediately, and whatever cavalry managed to complete their charge were easily repelled. Seeing this, the Wurttemberg regiments fell back to the relative safety of the village, but Smeltzer loosed his cavalry, and the 4th Bavarians slew the unfortunate enemy infantry that stayed behind to cover for their retreating comrades in a church yard.




    The enemy were crushed with a minimum loss of life, and Smeltzer was now free to march into Württemberg itself to teach them a lesson or two- the first of the Rhineland campaigns to follow.
    However, Württemberg scored a victory in the south first. The 6th Nuremberg had been dispatched on a raid into enemy territory in order, but were intercepted by a large force far from help. The raiding party also included a battalion of Dragoons, a new type of unit that Erlanger had introduced from his native Prussia. Armed with a Carbine, a type of shortened musket, they initially acted as mobile line infantry regiments, rapidly deploying in opportune moments. However, as warfare became less static Dragoons were eventually drilled to fire and reload from horseback (no mean feat with barrel-loading guns). August was fascinated by their potential on the battlefield, and so the dragoon regiments enjoyed special patronage from the Elector. They were attached to his personal guard, and became known as the Karabiniergarde, or KG for short. Saxon commanders now had to find a way to accommodate these new troops in the armed forces due to August’s wishes, and the line regiments resented these new upstarts to start with. However, the KG excelled at raiding across enemy countryside, and their commanders directed them ably when in battle to rapidly bring firepower to bear on the weak points of enemy lines, so winning the grudging respect of the rest of the army over time.

    In this battle, however, the Karabiniergarde was very much in its infancy. Some skirmishing and harrying was present at the start of the engagement on the KG’s part, but the Württemberg cavalry forced them to retreat behind the 6th, and the enemy blue coats (the Saxon nickname for Württemberg infantry- Saxons themselves wore white coats into battle) then charged home, smashing the Saxons with superior numbers. Despite killing almost 500 men, only 111 survived of the 6th, below half strength even for a battalion, and 23 from the KG’s first engagement, prompting Erlanger to recall the regiment to Dresden to enable a swifter replenishment of its ranks, while the KG limped back to Munich. Despite the easy victory, historians believe that this skirmish had a negative impact Württemberg war effort- 500 of the duchy’s best infantry were killed in action to repel a relatively harmless raid that would be sorely missed in the pivotal battle later in the year.




    With the regiment he had effectively kept in reserve gone, Smeltzer now had to be careful with the rest of his army to continue the campaign. He was attacked in northern Wurttemberg by an assortment of armies converging on his position near Ilshofen, but the Wurttembergers were unable to arrive at the same time, handing Smeltzer the opportunity to rapidly take out each army in turn. The first army was driven off easily enough by the 3rd and 4th, but enemy cavalry approached the 1st on the left flank, forcing them into square formation, and enemy bluecoats marched swiftly to take advantage. The other regiments quickly swung round, attempting to encircle the incoming enemy whilst Smeltzer’s cavalry quickly engaged the enemy horsemen. Musketry rang out across the snowy plain as the bluecoats extended their line enough to thwart a flanking attack, and men fell on both sides. Present in battle on the Wurttemberg side were what could be considered light infantry, the first dedicated battalion in western Europe to be trained to fight in such a way, and they inflicted heavy losses on the 4th (4th Picture). Seeing that he would have unsustainable casualties if the firefight continued, Smeltzer ordered a general charge led by the Pikemen which broke Württemberg morale and routed them from the field, winning the day. Described later as the pivotal battle in the campaign, there were750 Saxon casualties against 1500 Wurttemberg, and it opened the way for Smeltzer to march on Stuttgart. Had the Wurttembergers had the extra men lost in the skirmish with the 6th, though, the battle of Ilshofen could have been quite different.





    The battle was disastrous for Wurttemberg- over the course of a few battles they’d lost the majority of their army, and Smeltzer was marching on Stuttgart itself. Desperate, and with appeals to the Holy Roman Emperor falling on deaf ears, Eberhard Ludwig I, Prince of Wurttemberg, and the deposed Bavarian elector Maximilian II Emanuel threw themselves upon French mercy. In return for recognising Philip as the rightful King of Spain and French overlordship, Louis XIV would defend Wurttemberg and attempt to liberate Bavaria for Maximilian- if this came about, then Bourbon France would truly be supreme on mainland Europe. In a bid to stir things further, Louis requested Maximilian to go to the Duchy of Westphalia, realm of the Elector-Archbishop of Cologne, to play up fears of Saxon expansion and Austrian favouritism in order to get them to enter on the French side of the War of the Spanish Succession, which was now rapidly becoming an all-out war of anyone who had a grievance against the Hapsburg verses Austria and her allies.
    Thus, Saxony’s Rhineland campaign against Württemberg was now part of the wider European conflict, and it was looking increasingly likely she would have to face the might of France.

    Leopold was enraged- thought he only enjoyed nominal control over his German princes, fighting on the wrong side of a war against their Emperor was seen as a rebellion. He declared Bavaria’s electoral power de jure August’s to enjoy, fully legalizing Saxony’s control of two votes in the Imperial Diet- Bavaria’s vote was “retired” or abstained as there were two claimants to it until this point- and declared Württemberg under the Imperial Ban, or outside his protection. This meant that for all intents and purposes Württemberg was now a separate state to the Empire, and whoever conquered it could hold it as they wished- and it was implied that Cologne could experience the same if they threw their lot in with France.

    While these negotiations and proclamations were going on, Smeltzer surrounded Stuttgart. A token French force was sent to assist the Wurttembergers, but Smeltzer quickly took one of the star forts surrounding the city, the 1st’s second battalion leading the charge over the ramparts before charging home.



    However, the Saxons took quite heavy casualties, and there were survivors of the assault that had successfully managed to retreat into a second star fort. Smeltzer knew he had to storm the fort before a new and rather large army, nominally under the command of the Elector of Wurttemberg but made up of mostly French troops, was able to drive him away from Stuttgart. Without pausing, he sent his men to attack, and by Christmas 1709 Stuttgart was his.



    [What actually seemed to happen was that I won an assault, but for some reason the game didn’t hand the city over to me, instead sallying the AI out after “end turn”]
    Wurttemberg was now under Saxony’s lordship, as decreed by Leopold. Ludwig fled to Paris, and Smeltzer immediately started work on shoring up the star forts around the city, which had been damaged in the siege- a counter attack was expected, and Saxony was now the new front in the War of the Spanish Succession.

    *****

    And I shall go Softly into the Night Taking my Dreams As will You

    [This message has been edited by EnemyofJupitor (edited 05-07-2013 @ 10:35 AM).]

    Awesome Eagle
    Spear of Mars
    (id: awesomated88)
    posted 05-05-13 07:41 AM EDT (US)     35 / 75       
    Fantastic Update EOJ. Looks like the Saxons are starting to get rolling. Watch out for the French though, their superior numbers could whittle down your forces!

    Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it- George Santayana
    History is a guide to navigation in perilous times. History is who we are and why we are the way we are- David C. McCullough
    Wars not make one great- Yoda
    EnemyofJupitor
    HG Alumnus Superbus
    posted 05-05-13 12:39 PM EDT (US)     36 / 75       
    You're not wrong. They're taking a bit more of an interest in Germany now I'm attacking their allies, and their armies are mostly infantry based.

    And I shall go Softly into the Night Taking my Dreams As will You
    Terikel Grayhair
    Imperator
    (id: Terikel706)
    posted 05-06-13 04:16 AM EDT (US)     37 / 75       
    Nice update!

    I like the personalization touches to the tale- 'bluecoats' and others. It makes the tale sound as if told by one who was actually in it, as opposed to writing about a video game conquest. Nicely done!

    |||||||||||||||| A transplanted Viking, born a millennium too late. |||||||||||||||||
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    EnemyofJupitor
    HG Alumnus Superbus
    posted 05-06-13 06:09 AM EDT (US)     38 / 75       
    The Germanic armies of this time (or at least in-game) seem quite distinct in terms of colouration from the red of Hanover (Crabs, apparently, according to the Swedish) to the bluecoats mentioned above, so it's easy to draw up some quick nicknames here and there. The Saxons are getting a bit of a reputation at the moment with their white coats and fondness for marching through winter- the Wurttemberg infantry started referring to them as Wolves, a little detail I have only just thought of and not worked in, and the name catches on from there among ordinary soldiery like you or I. Other nations had their own nicknames- the French will always be frogs, the British Goddamns, the Swedish bluebottles...

    And I shall go Softly into the Night Taking my Dreams As will You
    EnemyofJupitor
    HG Alumnus Superbus
    posted 05-13-13 02:31 AM EDT (US)     39 / 75       
    I'm afraid no update this week- exams etc. It's written out but I need to upload pictures.

    However, next time- in a surprising turn off events the Poles defeat the Austrians and spill into Bohemia, intent on making it to Dresden, and Smeltzer is on the other side of the country. Will Saxony ride it out?

    And I shall go Softly into the Night Taking my Dreams As will You
    Awesome Eagle
    Spear of Mars
    (id: awesomated88)
    posted 05-13-13 07:24 PM EDT (US)     40 / 75       
    Ah, looking forward to the next update now. Best of luck!

    Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it- George Santayana
    History is a guide to navigation in perilous times. History is who we are and why we are the way we are- David C. McCullough
    Wars not make one great- Yoda
    Punic Hebil
    Centurion
    (id: Punic Hoplite)
    posted 05-13-13 10:29 PM EDT (US)     41 / 75       
    I've been thinking of trying a Saxony campaign in Napoleon. This is going to help me a lot, thank you Keep it going! (It's going to help me too! )

    I am the Carthaginian who became an angel, and surrendered his wings for a life on the sea of battle.

    My magic screen is constantly bombarded with nubile young things eager to please these old eyes. This truly is a wonderful period in which to exist! - Terikel the Deflowerer
    Terikel Grayhair
    Imperator
    (id: Terikel706)
    posted 05-14-13 01:16 AM EDT (US)     42 / 75       
    Good luck on your exams.

    As for the story, we can wait. Just make it worth the wait afterwards.

    |||||||||||||||| A transplanted Viking, born a millennium too late. |||||||||||||||||
    |||||||||||||||| Too many Awards to list in Signature, sorry lords...|||||||||||||||||
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    Somewhere over the EXCO Rainbow
    Master Skald, Order of the Silver Quill, Guild of the Skalds
    Champion of the Sepia Joust- Joust I, II, IV, VI, VII, VIII
    DominicusUltimus
    Legate
    posted 05-15-13 09:26 PM EDT (US)     43 / 75       
    Fantastic work so far EoJ. Looking forward to the next update, and good luck on your exams!

    "Life is more fun when you are insane. Just let go occasionally".- yakcamkir 12:14
    "It is not numbers, but vision that wins wars." - Antiochus VII Sidetes
    "My magic screen is constantly bombarded with nubile young things eager to please these old eyes. This truly is a wonderful period in which to exist! - Terikel Grayhair
    Angel of Total War: Rome II Heaven and the Total War: Attila Forums
    EnemyofJupitor
    HG Alumnus Superbus
    posted 05-16-13 02:00 PM EDT (US)     44 / 75       
    Well, I was going to cut a section into two because it's a lot of writing, but I'll post it as one to make up for two weeks I'm trying to keep a 3-part cushion between the present update and the amount I've finished to enable many links between posts (like what the Government are doing and overarching themes) as well as having a cushion to fall back on should I be busy, but that's now slipped to two (one come Sunday!). However- my exams finish on the 22nd, so I think I'll use the new found time to see if I can't make the time back up again. The next one I have to write will be writing-heavy detailing a small period of time, so I can sign that one off quite happily, and then a nice one with two battles in it after that is quite straightforward as well. That's if I don't change my mind and find that I need to lop a bit off the end of the writing-heavy one to make it bearable and stuff.

    Here's hoping anyway! Once I get those two out the way the fun really begins!

    And I shall go Softly into the Night Taking my Dreams As will You
    EnemyofJupitor
    HG Alumnus Superbus
    posted 05-19-13 08:50 AM EDT (US)     45 / 75       

    The Dresden Campaign, the Battle of Chemnitz, and Westphalia declares war



    1710- Despite a planned campaign for expansion in the east to avoid neighbouring France, circumstances and aggressive marching had meant that the Elector of Saxony’s realm now stretched in a thin corridor to the banks of the Rhine. On the other side of the river lay Alsace-Lorraine, an area that for the past few decades the French had garrisoned heavily, and a prime position for any march to start from in order to liberate Württemberg, so Stuttgart was to be garrisoned heavily to make the French and her allies think twice about marching into Germany.

    Further east, and Coburg was taking advantage of being part of Saxon lands by setting itself up as a centre for industrial innovation, providing a home for men such as the noted industrialist Klauss Benderet, who was working on a Steam Pump engine of a similar design to Thomas Newcomen in England. The two men had never met, nor exchange correspondence, but when both their engines were unveiled to the public within a month (Newcomen’s first, pumping out water in a Black Country tin mine) a bitter dispute erupted between German and British gentlemen scientists over who should gain credit for the invention, complete with accusations of stealing designs. Other British-German rivalry in the scientific spheres included the design of Coke-fuelled furnaces to produce cast iron, though Britain due to its superior coal reserves could easily utilize the invention to a much greater extent than Saxony.



    Elsewhere in the world, an attempted rebellion in the Netherlands was brutally crushed by the French, and the Maratha Confederacy of India entered into an alliance with the Crown of Denmark, which had been forced to leave its homeland by the Swedish invasion of 1708 and seek refuge in its territories of Norway and Iceland. The Marathas wished to gain a foothold in Europe as Europeans had in India, and Denmark happily leased them Stockholm in return for military protection against the Swedes. In July 1710 the first men for the subcontinent arrived in Norway, slightly colder than their native homeland, and began garrisoning the city. The presence of the Marathas angered the colonial powers in India, especially Great Britain, who had a treaty with the Mughal Empire and viewed the Marathas with suspicion.

    Of greater consequence for Saxony, however, was the surprise defeat of Austria in Bohemia. A determined advance into Austrian lands by Polish forces, still at war over the question of their right to rule Saxony, gained a stunning victory near Brno, modern day Czech Republic, thanks to clever use of cavalry to break up enemy infantry formations before crushing with cannon and musket. Taking advantage of the rest of the Austrian war machine being deployed in Italy to fight the French in the War of the Spanish Succession, the Poles marched on Prague and lay siege to the city in the winter of 1710. Alarmed and completely taken surprise by this turn of events, August recalled Smeltzer as a matter of urgency to defend the capital, for the enemy outnumbered the two regiments defending Dresden quite comfortably (the 5th Dresden, specifically raised for the defence of Saxony itself and the recovering 6th) and to assist the Austrians in defending Prague.



    Smeltzer was forced between a rock and a hard place- march east with too few, and Dresden would fall, and may prove to be very difficult to retake, but to march with too many was to invite attack from France. In the end, Smeltzer decided to entrust Stuttgart to the KG under the 1st KG’s Colonel, Dietrich Pirngruber. As was appropriate for a unit that was the personal favourite of an Elector, Pimgruber was the second son of one of the August’s trusted allies in court within the treasury, and the Colonel had taken advantage of the favour shown to him. From its first disastrous skirmish, the KG had grown in numbers thanks to August’s fancy to four full battalions over two Regiments, with a 5th on the way, and were present at the assault of the city earlier in the year. Saxony’s commanders (as well as the rank and file) did not regard them as reliable troops, but were left to guard the city regardless- Smeltzer needed to leave someone behind, and reasoned that their performance in battle would be helped by the fortifications levelling the playing field a little. They were also still a relatively large amount of men for a garrison, and Smeltzer also wanted his more trusted Line Regiments with him to meet the Poles- Dragoons can’t form square formation, he is said to have remarked.

    However, by winter 1711 the Polish army had beaten back two serious attempts by Austria to relieve the city and occupied it, with Dresden next in their sights. Seemingly unstoppable, they immediately marched on the Saxon capital, barely giving the defenders time to dig some rudimentary ditches. Quickly taking the southern half the city, the Poles encountered resistance as they pushed north- the 6th, the 5th, the town watch and even ordinary armed citizens were out in force to attempt to turn back the red tide. Keeping to the same successful tactics as before, Polish cavalry worried the Saxons and forced the line regiments into squares whilst picking off the militia and townsfolk with other troops. Some trying to escape the grasp of the cavalry attempted to garrison several buildings near the Line regiments, but Polish cannon raised them to the ground. Eventually, the 6th repelled the cavalry a short distance whilst the 5th engaged in a firefight with the enemy infantry. As the surviving militia used cover provided by the buildings to protect the flanks, the Saxons managed to rout their immediate enemy and set about neutralising the cannons pounding them. However, this gave the Polish opportunity to gather their forces again, and brought fresh infantry to bear on the Saxon positions. Tired, wounded, and outnumbered, the militia were scattered by flanking cavalry and the 5th and 6th were annihilated.
    Estimates about the size of the opposing armies put the Poles at around 2000 men, a third of which were horsemen, whilst the Saxons had 900 regular troops, 600 town militia and perhaps 2000 townsfolk and poorly armed irregulars, most of which had probably never held a musket before in their life and were dealt with early in the battle by enemy lancers.





    The results were devastating. August barely made it out alive, two regiments the Saxons could ill afford to lose gone, and the treasury sacked. The economy ground to a halt- Karl Marx reckoned August’s net income was a mere 392 Marks a year, nowhere near enough to recruit or build anything soon, and a riot threatened in Munich when the lower classes saw their chance to break away from Saxon overlordship that was only quelled by a stony-faced Smeltzer riding pointedly into the middle of the city escorted by the 1st Royal Regiment.



    Some tried to find a scapegoat, and Smeltzer was attacked by minor supporters and sycophants of the Elector hoping the curry favour- why had the general so many regiments under his command that could have been present at Dresden when in most of his battles he outnumbered the enemy comfortably? Could he have marched from Stuttgart more quickly? These malicious whisperings smacked of the desperation of politicians attempting to save their careers and appropriate blame elsewhere. They were also absurd- a general may request more men under his command, but it was the men at home who decided to release them, and whilst the Saxons had the fortune to outnumber the enemy on several occasions in terms of single battles, it was only by a few hundred men in each case, and there an equal (if not more) number of occasions that the Saxons were outnumbered themselves- Smeltzer’s genius was manoeuvring the enemy into positions where he could engage smaller pockets of men separately whenever possible, and in terms of men committed to a campaign as a whole he had the smaller army every time in his career. On the other side of the argument, First Lord of the Government Johannes Gauss publicly butted heads with August, denouncing his “Medieval obsession” for glory and conquest, deeming it a throwback to a past era. Notably, Jan Kallenbach admitted privately that August was a little too eager for his ambitions to be supported by the state.

    To make things worse, the Archbishop of Cologne had seen the Saxons’ situation, and let himself be persuaded by the deposed Elector of Bavaria Maximilian to join the War of the Spanish Succession on the side of France. Westphalia had no real interest in who ruled Spain, but a dominant Saxony would tip the balance of favour from being finely balanced between Austria and Prussia to a centralised state under Austrian-Saxon rule- the threat of an Imperial Ban merely showed that Austria was pursuing a policy of control over the other German states. Saxony’s white coated infantry were beginning the inspire a sense of unease among fellow German states as a rather deadly instrument of Austria’s will- August’s appetite for expansion being misinterpreted by his enemies as following orders from his Emperor in Vienna- so by March 1712 the Archbishop declared war. Saxony had yet another enemy to deal with.

    The priority was the retaking of Dresden, though- the KG would have to hang on for as long as possible to enable the concentration of force in the east. First, Smeltzer marched on Prague- a token garrison of a single regiment immediately surrendered and was allowed to march back to the border unharmed. Immediately Saxony’s economy picked up- Prague was a rich city, and August slyly persuaded Leopold to allow it to remain in Saxon hands “In Trust” so that Saxony could still be an effective force at Austria’s side until the devastating loss of Dresden (played up in importance by August in correspondence between the two) was recovered from.



    Leaving behind a scratch garrison, Smeltzer advanced to Dresden in full battle readiness- the Poles were expected in force. But the assault of the Saxon capital city and the defence mustered by the 5th and 6th severely depleted the Polish army, and several riots followed that sapped Polish strength. Not willing to lose his hard fought gains so soon, Stanislaw I quickly mustered reinforcements to send westwards. But for the men in Dresden, the vengeful Saxons had closed in too quickly. Iwan Zyskowski had roughly 1300 men of the three thousand that set out from Krakow, not enough to hold the city that was willing to open the gates to the potential besiegers. Instead, he opted to abandon Dresden but for a couple of regiments, driving deeper into central Germany to draw Smeltzer away from Dresden to give the Stanislaw’s reinforcements time to arrive. However, the garrison surrendered in the face of vast numbers, and Smeltzer gave chase, catching them up near Chemnitz.



    Pounded with cannon, the Poles had no choice but to turn and fight. Instead of engaging in a firefight where they would be easily overwhelmed, they opted for a bayonet charge to try and break through the white line in front of them. Lancer cavalry managed to rout a battery of artillery, but the Saxons crushed them. Only 120 Poles managed to make it out alive, and fled still westwards towards Bavaria. Smeltzer sent riders to muster some regiments to take care of them, and received news of French and Cologne incursions into Württemberg. Despatching the 1st to help the troops already stationed there, Smeltzer turned his men back towards Dresden to secure it. He re-entered the city showered with gifts from a grateful populace, and his genius for strategic manoeuvring the enemy to be at a large disadvantage was starting to build him a reputation across Europe. Though some had attempted to put him down, the common people of Saxony began to now take real pride in their chief general.



    Following the 5th’s destruction earlier in the year in Dresden, Erlanger ordered that the regiment would be refounded and based in Nuremburg. In such desperate times, it was a priority to get more men available for the defence of the realm, and the recovery began almost immediately. By the end of the year, a green regiment had been raised but had yet to be deployed on active duty. Following the Polish survivors fleeing towards Nuremburg, Erlanger despatched the 5th for their first small taste of action. The regiment hunted down pockets of resistance before they could create any headaches elsewhere in Saxony, and did so with remarkable efficiency for a new regiment. The 6th was also recreated- Great Britain was becoming uneasy with France’s ascendency, and viewed French attempts to dominate the western half of the Holy Roman Empire by waging war on behalf of Württemberg and Bavaria in return for fealty with suspicion. Helping Austria directly would be taken as entering the War of the Spanish Succession, which was fast becoming a very bloody affair that was claiming thousands of lives across northern Italy and the Rhineland, and Britain had no particular desire for that. However, helping Austria’s allies in conflict with France would be a less politically-charged action, and to this end Great Britain helped Saxony and Venice’s manpower shortages.

    Ireland had long been a backwater, struck with regular famine and unrest, but the Irish were famed for their savagery in a fight. What was proposed was the shipping to Venice and Saxony of 600 Irishmen each to become part of their armies, and was a win-win situation- the recipient nations would get a regiment’s worth of high quality volunteers for their armies, and Great Britain would wave goodbye to a potential 1200 trouble makers. The Irishmen were shipped to Munich and were whipped into a regiment, and took the regimental number 6 after the loss of Dresden. Later, they followed in Smeltzer’s wake and reinforced the scratch garrison left in Prague, but now found themselves surrounded by Stanislaw’s reinforcing Poles in 1713. Although the 6th were also a green regiment, they spoiled for a fight. Their antics on the walls of Prague, including one noted (and suspected drunk) Irishman setting his jacket on fire and running a length of the wall to “show how unafraid he was of the enemy” according to his court martial (the man managed to survive the experience, apparently). These bizarre actions and stuck fear into the hearts of the Poles, who had no idea what to expect next from these frightening men who spoke a completely different language to the Germans they were used to dealing with.

    This turned into an unwillingness to assault the rather lightly defended city, and Smeltzer was able to arrive in time to engage the enemy. Announcing his presence by blasting the men red from a cannon battery on a hill above the Polish positions, the Saxons quickly closed the distance between the two armies and cut off hope of a retreat for the Poles. Caught between the deadly advance of the white coats and the unnerving keening and cries of the sallying Irish, the men of Poland were crushed and Stanislaw’s invasion was at a decisive end in the dead of winter in 1713.




    Stanislaw, however, was first and foremost a brilliant politician. The actual outcome of the campaign was not the priority- it was merely a standard to rally his subjects around and cement his authority on a land where nobles were still found fighting amongst themselves. Furthermore, Polish forces had in fact managed to take and hold Dresden, if only briefly- Stanislaw proclaimed that the Saxons had proved themselves ungovernable after a series of riots, and he would not throw Polish lives away attempting to rule it. This apparent regard for his fellow man brought him goodwill among his subjects, and the fact peace was reached before Saxons spilled on to Polish soil was also seen a positive.

    Despite reaching peace on the eastern front, however, Smeltzer needed to march westward immediately- though the Polish war had concluded, the Rhineland campaigns continued against France and her allies.

    *****

    And I shall go Softly into the Night Taking my Dreams As will You

    [This message has been edited by EnemyofJupitor (edited 05-26-2013 @ 03:08 AM).]

    SwampRat
    M2TW Ladder Leader
    posted 05-20-13 02:51 PM EDT (US)     46 / 75       
    War stories really are a good advertisement for the games, I want to pick up ETW again - I think I've picked up Darthmod but not actually used it yet.

    Edit, no I hadn't got it, downloading now. Good AAR EoJ

    [This message has been edited by SwampRat (edited 05-20-2013 @ 03:04 PM).]

    Terikel Grayhair
    Imperator
    (id: Terikel706)
    posted 05-21-13 02:25 AM EDT (US)     47 / 75       
    This Smeltzer guy is putting a lot of miles on the boots of his men.
    (Note to self- invest in boot factory when playing ETW)

    Nice battles. Too bad you lost your capital for a while, but at least they didn't pillage/sack/raze the place and you got it back shortly thereafter.

    Nice moves of the battlefield as well. At least one was risky, but it paid off well. Good job!

    |||||||||||||||| A transplanted Viking, born a millennium too late. |||||||||||||||||
    |||||||||||||||| Too many Awards to list in Signature, sorry lords...|||||||||||||||||
    |||||||||||||||| Listed on my page for your convenience and envy.|||||||||||||||||
    Somewhere over the EXCO Rainbow
    Master Skald, Order of the Silver Quill, Guild of the Skalds
    Champion of the Sepia Joust- Joust I, II, IV, VI, VII, VIII
    EnemyofJupitor
    HG Alumnus Superbus
    posted 05-21-13 08:22 AM EDT (US)     48 / 75       
    Yes, they have appeared to have marched back and forth a bit!
    I assume you're talking about the decision to march east at the start of the update? Yeah, it caused a bit of fun in the west. The next update shall be on the Garrison left behind in the months after Smeltzer buggers off to a little past the final battle with Poland. Pirnman is going to have his hands full...

    And I shall go Softly into the Night Taking my Dreams As will You
    Awesome Eagle
    Spear of Mars
    (id: awesomated88)
    posted 05-22-13 02:14 AM EDT (US)     49 / 75       
    Great update EOJ! looking forward to the next one!

    Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it- George Santayana
    History is a guide to navigation in perilous times. History is who we are and why we are the way we are- David C. McCullough
    Wars not make one great- Yoda
    EnemyofJupitor
    HG Alumnus Superbus
    posted 05-26-13 03:08 AM EDT (US)     50 / 75       

    The Rhineland Campaigns- The second and third sieges of Stuttgart


    1712, May- Smeltzer had left to retake Dresden a few months previously, and had left the KG to hold Stuttgart from both the French and the Westphalians, who had recently declared war. The city was now surrounded- the more numerous Westphalians in the north, and a smaller but more elite group of French in the south, marking the first time France marched into Germany as part of the War of the Spanish Succession. Seeing that so few men defended the place, the commander of Westphalian forces, Ernst Pelzer, was eager to finish the job before the Saxons managed to relieve the siege, and the French were content with watching their German allies making the first move. The Westphalians were mostly militia, trusting numbers over quality in this instance, but also included light cavalry and some pikes. It outnumbered Dietrich Pirngruber, the colonel of the KG, by about a thousand men, and the Saxons knew that should it come to a straight firefight, they would not come out winners. With a couple of Line Regiments, perhaps it would be more even, but the KG were still raw, and had only the disastrous skirmish with the Wurttembergers to their name. And yet, given free reign and a desperate situation, Pirngruber managed to turn back the Wurttembergers.

    Unlike previous sieges the Saxons had been involved in, there was no one great assault. Pirngruber would lead his men out, and use the greater mobility of his horsemen to score minor cutting blows on the poor quality troops. Dragoons would goad the enemy into firing too soon- riding close to the militia, then fleeing back out of effective range as the cries came up to ready muskets and fire, before returning to fire from horseback with their shorter-ranged carbines as the militiamen were reloading and helpless. This would repeat until the enemy cavalry would mobilize, and the KG would then retire back inside the safety of the walls of Stuttgart. The Westphalians were terrified of the superbly mobile horsemen, and as casualties and desertions mounted, Pirngruber mounted one last daring attack at night which sent the Westphalians running. Pelzer couldn’t rally his militiamen or convince them to stay, and the siege was briefly broken. Pirngruber was a diarist whose journals were sent to Dresden after his death, and noted he had lost 112 men in the entire siege due to these tactics, chiefly due to the poor quality of the Westphalians- a line regiment wouldn’t have been so easy to spook, he suggested.



    [I actually autoresolved it and was surprised by the result, but the cycle tactics are what I started using with the KG in battles after this, so perhaps they developed them during this time?]

    The French quickly surrounded the city to continue the siege, and alienated the citizens inside the city by burning outlying properties and laying waste to the surrounding countryside. This prompted many to consider that life was preferable under Saxon rather than French rule, and Pirngruber found with each building torched the people of Stuttgart became more and more involved with the defence of their city. The besiegers consisted of elite Grenadier regiments and Line infantry, and were more than a match for the badly depleted KG, but the Saxons with the help of a town militia held out for several months. News came through of Smeltzer’s campaign in the east- the fall of Dresden, the surrender of the Prague garrison and the pursuing of the Polish forces into central Germany, which raised spirits. The French waited- though in a straight fight the enemy would be crushed, they simply did not have the numbers to risk an assault, and were waiting on reinforcements from Strasbourg. Eventually, the garrison came to realise they were in dire straits - Smeltzer was not marching to their aid, as the Poles were still threatening in the east, their food and water was running out and they had to consider the possibility of surrendering. The French promised safe passage back to Munich for the garrison, but refused to promise not to sack the city, something which appalled the residents inside. It was beginning to look like Pirngruber had no choice when there was a blaring of trumpets and flags unfurled in the morning sun- Saxon reinforcements!

    After the Battle of Chemnitz in the winter of 1712, The 1st Royals were dispatched westwards to salvage the increasingly desperate siege. On the way, they met with the 5th Nuremburg, and the two colonels, Friedrich Schnabel of the 1st and Oskar Renke of the 5th, decided to march west together in the light of recent news filtering back to them of how the KG had defeated the Westphalians but were not able to shift the French. In doing so, Renke was taking a risk for his very career in abandoning his specific mission to hunt the Polish down without the say so of the Government now based in Munich, but he was convinced that he had fulfilled it, and that his regiment was required on the Rhineland immediately. And so, in the morning sunlight of March, 10 months after the siege began, the 1st and 5th moved to engage the French Grenadiers in view of the Saxon garrison.

    With allies now at hand, Pirngruber straight away rode out. The KG managed to waylay French troops before they could form up with the rest of their comrades and slaughtered them, whilst the 1st laid down a base of fire on the rest. The 5th marched smoothly into a flanking position, before the KG shut the trap by riding around the French rear. Pirngruber decided that the enemy were on the edge of running, and sounded a general charge to finish the job off, which Schnabel responded to by sending in the 1st’s 2nd battalion, who were getting a bit of a reputation for enjoying close combat savagery. The French broke, and were slaughtered almost to a man- 6 survivors managed to escape by playing dead at the end of the battle, before stealing away in the night.




    Pirngruber was congratulated for his feats in Stuttgart with a promotion to General- he was granted command of armed forces in the west until Smeltzer could return with the majority of the Saxon army, and was granted permission to recruit an informal regiment from the local population- after the conduct of the French in the second siege of Stuttgart, many citizens of Württemberg were throwing their lot in with the Saxons rather than rebelling against their rule like Bavaria did when first conquered. The Wurttemberg regiments were allowed to keep their traditional blue coats, and the men later famously commanded by Smeltzer in his campaigns against the Swedish could directly trace their regimental ancestry to these first volunteers. However, it was under Pirngruber that their earliest successes were earned and their first piece of action was in the third siege of Stuttgart, Winter 1713.



    The French had not wasted any time in gathering their troops for yet another attack, and this time they were serious- lancer cavalry, royal regiments, the hardened 24th of the French subjection of the Netherlands and Irish exiles not entirely unlike the 6th fielded by Smeltzer in Prague. Over 3000 men marched to Stuttgart, whilst Pirngruber did not have time to replenish the men under his command- the 1st, the 5th and the KG all were low on numbers from the previous summer, and the only new men under his command were the aforementioned Wurttemberg volunteers in their first taste of action and some hastily-marched Bavarian militiamen from Munich.



    He had also not been able to complete the repairs of the city’s forts- the fort which would bear the brunt of the enemy’s approach in particular had a sizable breach that would require years to repair. The Saxons decided to use this apparent weakness to their advantage, and entice the enemy through this breach into a killzone. A farrier was paid to slip out of the city at night, and meet the oncoming French- there, the apparent traitor gave detailed but entirely fabricated information on the planned deployment of the garrison, and the apparent hope of Pirngruber to distract the French so much that they did not realise the existence of this serious breach in the walls. Upon daybreak, it certainly looked like this was indeed the Saxon defence- many men were on the walls including a regiment of the newly raised Württemberg axillaries, and the French had to endure potshots and cannon fire as they raced around the parameter of the fort to reach the breach.



    Unusually, the cavalry did not dismount for the assault- they had been told the breach was in fact flat in nature, rather than a pile of rubble, which would be suitable for horses. This was true- Pirngruber had spent the past week clearing the rubble to use to strengthen the front and side walls and make it an even more tempting target than before- and the French commanders decided that a quick strike was needed to gain a hold of the breach before the Saxons could redeploy and halt the French incursion. Thus, the cavalry entered the breach first, and found to their horror the Saxons were waiting- massed infantrymen in square formation encircling the breach ahead and to the left, with Bavarian sharpshooters in nearby buildings to the right pouring fire out below. The cavalry veered left and smashed into the 5th Nuremburg, which repelled them with the help of militia with medium casualties. Surrounded, bogged down in combat and discovering that their useful Farrier friend had tricked them all along, the French cavalry fled. There was a then a pause in the battle after this, as the French commanders gathered information from survivors of the cavalry to gauge how best to proceed with the assault- more French infantry were to be sent into the meatgrinder of the Saxon killzone, but grappling hooks were issued to several crack regiments including the 81st and the 8th Royal Suedois (Royal Swedish) to scale the walls at points manned by what the French were now sure were in fact militiamen rather than the core of “Wolf regiments” (An interesting nickname that had been introduced to France and neighbouring states by defeated Württemberg loyalists fleeing to France, stemming from Saxon line regiments’ grey coats and the strange number of campaigns fought in the winter by them- their commanders’ taste for sly manoeuvring probably also contributed) Pirngruber had under his command.



    The Saxons, wary of the French attacking new parts of the fort, reshuffled the men present at the breach. The first wave of French infantrymen saw the 5th’s 1st battalion redeployed to the right hand side in order to protect the buildings occupied by the Bavarians- the French made straight for them, and engaged in a bayonet melee to try and escape the never-ending fire of the 1st manning the centre. With various French regiments clambering up the walls on different sides, however, it then becomes a bit more difficult to pinpoint the movements of the Saxon garrison- the best account of the battle we have is Pirngruber’s diary, but he admits that in the heat of battle he had lost track of the situation around the walls, trusting his officers to respond appropriately or sending a messenger if reinforcements were needed. The next event all eyewitness accounts agree on is that the 5th were shuffled off the main breach, possibly to man some part of the wall, and the 1st Württemberg regiment now steps up to take their place. The 111st French regiment immediately charge through the breach in yet another attempt to break through the right hand side of the Saxons, but the Wurttemburgers coolly squeeze off a volley before meeting them in hand to hand combat- remarkable for a green regiment raised under the threat of siege. This particular melee lasts for some while, whilst at the same time Bavarian militia on the walls are being assaulted by the Royal Suedois and the 81st on the western side of the fort, and an unnamed French regiment has taken control of the unmanned southern gatehouse. Each of these are repelled in turn- the 5th’s 2nd Battalion peel away from their posts at the kill zone and secure the clear the southern wall of Frenchmen before they can open the gate, whilst the 2nd regiment of Wurttemburgers lead a counter charge to support the Bavarians- eyewitness accounts of these actions are the first piece of evidence of Württemberg and Bavarian troops operating under Saxon leadership in units distinct from the Saxon line infantry such as the 4th and 5th, easily recognisable with their dark blue and sky blue coats respectiely. With their three attacks foiled, the French attempt to disengage, but Pirngruber leads the 1st on a rapid sally to rout the remaining French troops- some lancers, the generals and their staff, and the remainders of the infantry, including the Irish Brigade that was kept in reserve.





    Victory had seemed improbable, but the third siege of Stuttgart ended as a resounding success for Saxony. Pirngruber now finally had the long-sought after reinforcements arrived shortly after, along with new instructions from August’s government, and he released the KG throughout the spring to pursue the broken French into Alsace-Lorraine, conducting lightning strikes into enemy territory. The general expressed in his diary the wish that he could lead them on this wild chase, but a General could not endanger himself on a raid when he had a campaign to plan- Smeltzer was heading east, and for the first time Saxony would be on the offensive in the War of the Spanish Succession.



    Interestingly, the 7th and 8th Württemberg regiments have differing traditions on the 3rd siege of Stuttgart- the 8th and indeed the official version of events hold that the two regiments raised during the siege outside the main army structure, dubbed the 1st and 2nd Württemberg regiments, were incorporated into the Saxon army in the months after the siege as the first battalions of the 7th and 8th Wurttemberg respectively at the same time- thus, the two regiments entered into regular service simultaneously. The 7th, however, have a regimental tradition that both regiments present were organised into the first and second battalions of the 7th regiment, with the 8th only being recruited for after Stuttgart was secured, and therefore were not present in this battle. Such regimental rivalry is not uncommon, but it is impossible for historians to clear up which version of events is true- certainly during Pirngruber’s first foray into the Rineland a year later in 1715 only the 7th marched with him, the 8th garrisoning Stuttgart, but alas the relevant recruitment files that could have finally put this dispute to bed once and for all were lost in the second sack of Dresden almost twenty years later.

    *****

    And I shall go Softly into the Night Taking my Dreams As will You

    [This message has been edited by EnemyofJupitor (edited 05-26-2013 @ 03:08 AM).]

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