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    John Candy

    Hi folks,

    I am new to Black Powder. Have Black Powder V1 Rules and am learning.

    Just want to know if I am doing it right?


    If two french columns want to charge against one british line unit. Lets say all have the same stats, like 6 H-H / 3 Dice for fire and so on. Standard line values. The two french columns attack at the front of the british.

    1) The first french column to get into contact would have to take a closing fire, then contact.

    2) The 2nd french column would not have to take that.

    3) when doing the H-H or melee. The both french columns would roll with 6 dice each. The British line unit has to divide the strength , 3 dice to each column.

    Is that correct?

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 9 months ago by John Candy.
    Big Al

    Yes that is correct.

    This was not a popular rule and a suggestion was made in Albion Triumphant to reduce the effect, somewhat. That suggestion was that the first unit would suffer the closing fire but not contact the line and would support the second unit, which would be the one that contacted the line and fought.

    However, V2 of the Rules has changed things and made the Albion Triumphant suggestion obsolete. V2 of Black Powder now only allows one unit to contact an enemy unit in one quarter.

    The real issue is caused by players ignoring (or not knowing about) the French Attack columns actually deploying into line when they made contact. This is not helped by the Morale Save bonus that the rules give to an attack Column and players wanting that as it gives them an edge.



    Hi All,

    Is there any rules for what happens once a brigade commander is removed? If not what do you guys do?


    OK, so normally units without the skirmish rule cannot be in open order. The one except is when entering such things as wood. Changing to open order requires an order and takes 1 move. So, by my understanding to enter a wood, the non-skirmish unit would require a minimum 2 moves – one to go into open order, and then 1 to enter the terrain. Similarly, leaving the terrain would require 2 moves (one to leave the terrain and another to reform in close order).

    So, you order the unit to go into open order and enter the terrain. However the result of the command roll is that the unit can only go as far as forming open order, but not enter the terrain. Is the unit therefore allowed to form open order, even though it would leave it in an illegal formation until its next turn? Or should it remain in closed order as it is unable to complete the order.

    Similarly, when leaving the terrain, what happens if the unit is only able to leave the terrain, but cannot make the formation change?



    Charge The Guns

    Hi Arcole, in my view a unit could be ‘stranded’ in open order just outside of a wood while it tries to get the order off to move in or reform after coming out.  Being in open order it should suffer the -1 for skirmishers in melee so that it is vulnerable to being attacked.


    I agree with @Charge the Guns… There is a rules precedent for instructions that cant be completed with the number of orders rolled (artillery limbering) carries over to the next turn. So I would go with that… if you tell a unit to go through woods and dont get enough orders they do as much as they can but stop when they run out of them.

    Eg You tell the line regiment to go in to the woods to form a firing line on the opposite side, and roll 2 orders… the Formed regiment goes up to a wood and then into skirmish order but doesnt have another order to enter & so stays out of the woods in skirmish order.  Next turn if you want to carry on sending them through the woods, well they’re already in skirmish order so the 1st order allows them to move into it, if you want them to do anything else then the 1st order would be to reform.

    Big Al

    Charge the Guns is right. You issue your order and just rolled enough for the completion of the first part. That means that the unit changes formation. It is now stranded.

    Leaving terrain like woods would be the same result. The only difference being that the unit does not need an order to change to line or close order because it would automatically change to its default formation. However changing formation still takes a full move. This was mentioned on the old forum by the author. You could argue that closing up could be part of the same move, but the men would be dressing ranks, etc which would take time.


    Thanks, that makes sense

    Brian Alter


    For British Cavalry (in Albion Triumphant Vol2), I see references to a breakthrough move that is required ” even if it takes them off the table” as part of the “Gallop at Anything” rule. I searched both the V1 and V2 rulebooks pdfs and both Albion 1&2 but couldn’t find anything pertaining to what a “breakthrough move” is. Could someone please explain this and where I can find an explanation and/or rule? Rule snippet from the book is below.


    Pg 36 Albion Triumphant Vol2: “+ 1 to Charge order. Cavalry with this rule automatically
    gain the Ferocious Charge rule (Black Powder, page 90) but must
    make a breakthrough move if allowed, even if this takes
    them off the table. British cavalry suffer a +2 to their
    command roll when they leave the table under such



    Albion 1 +2 (+ clash of Eagles) are V1 rulebooks….and written in a gentelmans framework not a tight ruleset like modern games.

    However a Break through move is used to describe what a sweeping advance is… (In an ideal world / tight ruleset the rule would say must make a Sweeping Advance and move maxamuim distance even it it takes them off the table)

    v1 pg 69  “Sweeping Advance – This move represents a unit breaking through a gap in the enemy’s lines or pursuing a retiring enemy in a running fight. It is especially useful for cavalry units because they can move  further and hit harder.”

    v2 pg 73 “Sweeping advance – This move represents a unit breaking through a gap in the enemy’s lines. It is especially useful for cavalry units”

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 6 months ago by Nat.
    Big Al

    As Nat has said, the supplements were all written with V1 of the rules in mind.

    There are a couple of things to consider and the main one is that the rules in the supplements are just suggested alternatives or additions. It is up to you whether you use them or not or even to tweak them. They are not actual rules replacements, just optional.

    Rules like Gallop At Anything are there to add historical character to the units that they were written for. British cavalry were renowned for charging off and being lost afterwards. They were headstrong and if they won their fight, they tended to run their enemy into the ground, instead of regrouping or falling back.

    Now, as Nat has said, the Sweeping Advance Rules are quite well defined, but if you don’t want your unit to carry out a Sweeping Advance, then you don’t have to do it. Your unit is the Victorious Unit and has a number of choices open to it. It could perform a Sweeping Advance, or maintain contact with the enemy it has just pushed back, or, it could just consolidate its position and regroup where it is. The Gallop At Anything Rule, forces the unit to do what it did historically and charge at the first opportunity. If it successfully defeats the enemy, it is forced to follow up and chase down the enemy by forcing a Sweeping Advance, hence what is called a “Breakthrough Move”.

    I agree with Nat. I don’t know why the author used the different terminology instead of just saying that it “must perform a Sweeping Advance”. It would have created less confusion!

    Brian Alter

    Thanks Nat and Big Al for the clarifications on what “breakthrough move” was intended to be. I knew the supplements were written for V1 so I checked both. I like the flavor it adds, so will use the “Gallop at Anything” rule, just with Sweeping Advance. I agree that the wording is weird and hope that at some point they either FAQ/errata them, or rewrite them. So very confusing for new players, so I guess that is why there is a community for support. 🙂 Appreciate the quick response!


    Portugese Brigades post 1810 typically consisted of 2 line regiments each of two batallions plus possibly an independant Cazadore batallion. All batallions consisted of 5 companies , the 5th company being a grenadier company in the 1st Line, a light company in the 2nd line and a rifle armed Atiriadore company for the Cazadores.

    Pre 1812, the Cazadores may well be absent. (see 1, 2)

    The regimental light company might be made up of Warlord grenadarios figures (5th one with the short sword option) but a different paint job (see 1).

    The AT1 listings for the Portuguese troops (3, p103) are an approximation. They model a line regiment as a Black Powder batallion and only one can be upgraded to Large.

    IMHO a better approximation would be to have all 5 batallions as Small or 2 Large Line regiments plus a Small Cazadore battalion.

    Having closer access to conscript replacements, these Portuguese formations were often better at keeping up to strength  than their British counterparts. In manpower, an Anglo-Portuguese division could be close to equal in numbers despite there being nominally 2 British and 1 Portuguese Brigades in the Division.

    In some scenarios, 5 Standard formations may even be approriate.


    References: (Nb the ISBN numbers should let you get them on inter library loan, otherwise they can be found on the internet at the usual places.)


    1] The Portuguese Army of the Napoleonic Wars (1), Osprey Men at Arms, Chartrand Younghusband, 2000, ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1855327678

    2] Wellington’s Army in the Peninsular 1809-1814, Osprey Battle Orders, Reid, 2004, ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1 841765171

    3] Albion Truimphant vol 1, Warlord Games, McWalter, 2014, ISBN-13 : ‎ 978-0-95633581-5-8

    Stefan Hückelheim

    Why does the King’s German Legion cost 1 point more than the normal Line Infantry. They have the same statistics and the same special rules, don’t they?


    @Stefan – KGL have rifle mixed formation during the 100 days (Albion Triumphant 2) which is the extra point. (their skirmishers fire as rifles).  In the Peninsular (Albion Triumphant 1) they are the same cost as the British Red Coats.

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