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Battle Scenarios

The Battle of Crecy (1346 AD)

At Crecy, the carefully deployed and well disciplined army of Edward III humbled King Phillip VI of France and left 1,500 of the chivalry of France dead on the field in this famous battle during Edward's chevauchee of 1346 AD during the 100 Years War.

The Armies

100 Year War English (#168).

Medieval French (#170).

The Historical Battle

Following his sack of Caen and unsuccessful seige of Rouen, the English King Edward III found his army of 10,000 threatened by the French king Phillip VI's army of 20,000. Retiring across the Seine River, they were nearly trapped at the Somme and had to fight their way across the ford at Blanchetacque. Hard pressed, Edward took up strong defensive positions near Crecy and offered battle to the French.

For his part, King Phillip had been careful, looking for an opportunity to employ his superiority in numbers and especially the weight of his Knights to best advantage. His Nobles, however, were impatient. Confident of their numbers and prowess, they forced Phillip to give battle on August 25, 1346.

Edward had chosen his position well. A steep hill overlooking the narrow valley of the Maye River was cut in broad terraces for agriculture. Edward deployed his army on three levels. On the lowest terrace on the wings he placed English archers. On the next level up, he placed the balance of his archers in the center with dismounted men-at-arms on the wings. On the highest level, he posted a strong line of dismounted men-at-arms. The Crecy-Grange Wood protected his rear and a wind mill provided a convenient command post.

Phillip opened the battle by advancing his mercenary Genoese crossbowmen, who were worsted in a firefight with the English long bow. The crossbowmen were hampered due to their lesser rate of fire and the lack of protective pavises (which were left with the baggage train due to the haste of the attack). As they retired, the French Knights rode them down in distain and then charged forward into a hail of English archery. Lacking coordination and robbed of impetus by the steep slopes, the French knights made little headway. The chevaliers and their horses fell by the score. One desperate charge brought the French into melee with the archers of the Prince of Wales battle, but they were repulsed without significant loss. The English men-at-arms were largely spectators to the battle as the English longbowmen effectively covered the field with their shafts. By the day's end, an estimated 1,500 French knights and nobles lay dead on the field, with the remainder greatly dispirited and on the verge of rebellion against King Phillip, who was forced to break off the fight and retire.

The victory left Edward free to march on Calais, which he captured on August 3rd after several minor battles. Contributing to Edward's success was the distraction created by Henry, the Duke of Lancaster's own chevauchee to the south in Poitou. Meanwhile, with most of English arms overseas, King David of Scotland seized this opportunity to cross the border and ravage southward until repulsed at Durham in October 1346 by an army led by the ArchBishop of York.

Deployment

The English deploy first anywhere above the first slope line. English Knights and cavalry fight dismounted (as 4Bd). French deploy second anywhere within 600P of their baseline and move first. French Knights fight mounted.

Game Map (ASCII)


=================English Baseline================
f f f f f f f . . . . . r . . . . . . . . . . . .
f f f f f . . . . . . r . . . . . . . . . . . . .
f f f . . . . . . . r . . . . . . . . . . . . . . <- High Ground
f f . . . . . . r . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . s <--Second Slope Line
. . . . . . . r . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . s .
s s . . . . r . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . s . . <--Terrace  
. . s s s r . # . . . . . . . . . . . . s s . . s <--First Slope Line
. . . r r s s s . . . . . . . . . s s s . . . s .
s s r . . . . . s s s s s s s s s . . . . s s . .
. r s s . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . s . . . . <--Low Ground 
. r . . s s s . . . . . . . . . . s s s . . . . .
. r . . . . . s s s s s s s s s s . . . . . . . .
. r . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
. r . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . r
. r . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . r .
. r . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . r . .
. r . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . r . . .
. r . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . r . . . .
. r . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . r h h h . .
. r . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . r r h h h h h .
C C r r r r r r r r r r r r r r r . . h h h h h .
C C . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . r . h h h h h .
w w w w w w w w w . . . . . . . . . r . h h h . .
f f f f . . . . . w . . . . . . . . . r . . . . .
================French Baseline==================

SCALE: The distance between each dot/letter is one inch.

TERRAIN KEY:

. = Good Going (Good Going)
s = Slope
w = River Maye
r = road
h = hill
f = Forest (Bad Going)
C = Crecy (Built Up Area/Bad Going)
# = Windmill (optional)

Terrain Notes

Ground between slope lines is flat good going (i.e. plowed agricultural terrace). Slopes are steep and provide +1 Close Combat modifier to defenders on higher ground.

The windmill is provided for visual appearance only and has no effect on play (too small to be considered a BUA and does not block line of sight).

Special Rules

None.

Victory Conditions

Use the normal DBA victory conditions.


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Last Updated: June 18, 1998

Questions, comments, and feedback are welcome. Sent them to my attention at IamFanaticus@gmail.com.