[Solved] 2nd Möckern October 1813
We plan to refight this one so I am just putting together the scenario. Just wondered how best to reflect the French command structure. Ney was nominally in command with 3 corps under him, but Marmont actually ended up commanding on the day. How would you suggest its structured? Marmont as army and force commander with all formations in the one force? I get the impression it was a problem on the day.
Looking forward to your reply.
Please forgive any oversights as this isn't something I'm in the middle of at the moment and therefore I could easily overlook something without knowing it. I also can't pledge this is the only way I'd recommend organizing the scenario, but it should give a start!
My thinking that is 2nd Möckern's (October 1813) French order of battle would be something similar to what follows:
Ney was effectively a wing commander, which in ESR game terms would make him an Army Commander.
Marmont was a corps commander (Force Commander) with three divisions; the 20th, 21st and 22nd (Formations) plus the VI Corps d'armée artillery reserve (another Formation) and the 25th Light Cavalry Brigade (another Formation).
There was also Arrighi's III Cavalry Corps, he would be a second Force Commander with three Formations of cavalry.
That makes for two players acting as Force Commanders (Marmont and Arrighi).
Dabrowski was detached from the VIII Corps d'armée with the 1st Brigade of his 27th Division (a Formation) and (I think Uminski's cavalry); this Polish Formation could either be made available to the French players as attachable to any Force or report directly to Ney.
Delmas' 9th Division (a Formation) was also detached to this vicinity from the III Corps d'armée and could be either made attachable or assigned directly to Ney.
If those two Formations were assigned directly to Ney, then Ney would act as an Army Commander with regard to Marmont and Arrighi, while being the Force Commander of two Formations himself.
This results in a scenario where the French are run by 2-3 players.
The Allied order of battle is a whole other question. The big issue to consider there is whether each Russian Infantry Corps should be treated as a single Formation with Langeron as the Force Commander, or if each Russian Infantry Corps should be treated as a Force (this would be the normal/default option) of a couple weak Formations. The latter option could potentially result 6-7 Allied players, but is perhaps more realistic as the Allied divisions are innately very fragile.
[Changed your topic name to indicate 2nd Möckern and moved the topic to 1813 in Germany since eventually that is where it will belong 😉 and in the mean time it is likely where others will look for it. -DME]
Thanks for the reply. Very detailed considering you are not on top of the subject!
I have just started reading around the battle but got the impression that Marmont was effectively managing the battle with very little direction from Ney, other than Ney promising the support of III corps formations as they become available. Also I'm not sure how active a role Arrighi played. Seems like Marmont effectively put the Cavalry divisions under his direct control. That would indicate Marmont as a force commander with all the formations under his control, with perhaps Ney simply being there to attach them to Marmont's force.
Interesting point about the Russian command structure. I'm guessing Langeron did not directly issue orders to the formations so I'm inclined to include the Russian Corp commanders as force commanders - bit of extra friction. With Blucher as army commander and Langeron as a wing? commander through which orders must travel - yet another nice bit of friction.
A factor for us is we don't have too big a group of players, but we are getting better at managing multiple forces.
One thing I will always encourage keeping in mind when staging scenarios: setup the historical circumstances but don't hedge the players in.
For instance, historically I believe you are correct that Ney did little – but if Ney was available, and had the authority, then it is certainly plausible that the French player(s) "do it differently" than Marmont and Ney did historically…