Monday 10 June 2024

Broadside 2024 - Posties Rejects - The Battle of Croix-du-Bouquets 1792

This past Sunday was the Rejects annual pilgrimage to the Broadside Wargaming Show in Gillingham. It was my turn to put on the game and as you may have already seen, the game was a reenactment of the Battle of Croix-du-Bouqets in 1792 during the Haitain Revolution or the St Domingue Revolt.
We had quite a turn out of Rejects for Broadside this year, there were 10 of us walking around in our red T-Shirts! We had a lot of interest in the game, with people asking lots of questions, which is always pleasing. One chap I spoke to, I think his name was John, thinks he might have found his new period to paint up and play. That of course is inbetween the rest of his lead pile.

I used a heavily modified version of Donnybrook, to hopefully move the game along quickly. 


General Andre Rigaurd
2nd Colonial Infantry
5th Colonial Infantry

General Louis-Jacques Beavis
9th Colonial Infantry
11th Colonial Infantry

Ernso Bein Aime
3rd Colonial Cavalry

Marcel Giroux
Mulatto/Townsfolk 1
Mulatto/Townsfolk 2 

2nC Felix Dubois
Rebels/Slaves 1
Rebel/Slaves 2
Rebel/Slaves 3

Moise Gabreil
Rebel/Slave Sharpshooter 


Joseph-Alexandre Tourette
2 companies of 48th Infantry (formally Artois)

Jean-Francois Louis Picault
2 companies of 9th Infantry (formally Normandie)

National Guard Port-au-Prince Infantry
National Guard Port-au-Prince Dragoons

1 Artillery

French 19th Dragoons

The battle was pretty simple. The 2 Haitian leaders met at the town of Croix-du-Bouquets to discus how to move forward in their rebellion. They were joined by the mulatto townsfolk and by quite a number of rampaging slaves. The French got wind of this meeting and planned to stop the rebellion before it gained any momentum. But they didn't know the army had doubled in numbers.

The starting positions. The French have set up for battle, and the Haitians are forming outside ready to attack.

The town would see many battles and skirmishes during the rebeliion

Don't drink the water from the fountain!
I had to get Postie to recue the fountain, after I ruined it using railway realistic water. For some reason it reacted to the paint and bubbled up all over the surface. I was a bit miffed to be fair and it nearly ended up a few gardens down, before Postie came to the recue.
All the buildings are from the excellent Empires at War. 

In our practise game, I started the Haitian Cavalry off table. I realised they were needed sooner, so they were on from the start.

The troops pour out of the town, full flight towards the French.

The rebel slaves led by a 21 years old lady named Yacinth, who's only weapon was a bulls tail and her mouth, which she used to work the slaves up to a frenzy. She can be seen in the centre bottom all in white.

The Haitian front line made up of the 4 Colonial infantry regiments

The 3 Rebel/slave units

Dan's 48th Infantry

Steve's 9th Infantry and the National Guard Infantry

The Top-hatted National Guard Dragoons

The Haitian flags were made from tearing the white colour from a French Tricolour

The Haitian move forward.

They might be able to make a charge move next turn?

But some great dice rolls smashed into the lines, the 9th Colonial Infantry were all but destroyed by artillery and musket fire.

But the mulattos would take their place.

The 1st Rebels lose and handful of figures under withering French musketry!

This wasn't going to my plan, Dave leaning over the table kept throwing really bloody awful dice, much to the French players delight!

The highlight so far fro the Haitians was killing 3 out of 4 French artillerymen, but the French certainly paid them back for this brief bit of cheer.

The French 48th lost a few casualties to musketry.

But the cards kept coming out in favour of the French.

The Haitians do manage to get in and charge.

But the French dice were on fire. Both units of Mulattoes are on the run back.

Sacre bleau! This isn't how the battle was supposed to go. The French should be the ones running??

The Haitians ended up getting decimated and the French players changed history!!!
Could this end the Haitian Revolution before its really begun?

Well I wasn't expecting that? In our two practice games, it was clear that the Haitian's were up against it, so I added figures to their numbers and abilities and knocked down the ability of the French and their commanders. But this was nowhere enough, added to the Haitians really bad dice roles and the french players great dice rolling, they were given a damned good thrashing!!
Looking back on the game now, there's loads I would change to give the Haitians a more historical chance of winning the game. I have enough figures to give the Haitians another 4 units, but didn't want to make it a was over, but I think giving them another 2 units would have helped. Maybe starting them a little closer and dropping the 24 inch fire range to say 18inch?
There's lots for me to ponder over here, me thinks??

A big thank you has got to go to all the members of the Milton Hundred Club for all their hard work getting the show up and running, and thanks for the extra two tables Dave!!
Also thanks to the Rejects for giving it there all on the day and thank you to all the members of the public who took the time to talk to one of us and ask questions about the game and history. Hopefully i might have converted one or two of the over to the Haitian Revolution?
You never know?

The Rejects
Dan, Dave, Postie, Steve, Ray, Olly, Chris, Richard, Surj
& Lee taking the photo!


  1. Sure is a fine-looking table, Ray. Your roads and town are especially eye-catching. Time to shift gears and prepare for today's next challenge. I like your new header photo too. Super perspective.

    1. Thanks Jon, we had a great plan for your soon fell apart though!

  2. That's really cool. And now you have a fine new header for your blog.

    1. I do indeed, I thought it was about time I had a change.

  3. Great looking game Ray, the figures and table look top notch, interesting read and a crushing victory for the French, never saw that coming!

  4. Great game Ray. The town is very impressive. And the side of those fields. Proper fields those!

    1. Thanks, I thought, as the mat was 10x5.5 foot, you may as well go big on the fields!!!

  5. Spectacular table Ray, and a really greatly enjoyable read!

    I don’t know about beefing up the Haitians to give them better chances next time. I disagree with changing historical line ups drastically if one is playing a historical scenario. At the end of the day the die rolls were what they were so possibly a refight with the same units might end up differently?

    1. I totally agree Lawrence, it all the Rejects fault, throwing all those good dice and terrible ones from team Rebel!

  6. That all looks terrific, and I'm glad it came together so well. Would the Haitians have prevailed as is with better dice rolls, do you think?

    1. They may have done, at one point I thought they'd won, as they got around the French right flank, they threw 12 x D8's needing 6 and above and scored nothing. Fighting back Dan threw 8 x D8 and got 4 casualties. And there ended the Haitian flank assault.

  7. Great looking game and nothing wrong with changing history in my opinion, or historical refights would not be much fun for those playing the losing side! You can't fight the dice Gods!

  8. Lovely looking game Ray. Games are pretty unpredictable and these games with assymetrically trained forces are particularly difficult. Great turn out by your group.

  9. Great game and great day Ray.

  10. Well done, Ray: you've done yourself and the Rejects proud!

  11. Thats a really nice looking table!

  12. That's a brilliant looking table, presentation, and game Ray. Very nicely done.

    Can we expect to see it at the Middlesbrough wargames show in November, with the Rejects on Tour? I'm only joking - But I reckon Partizan at Newark would benefit from you all and this game.

    1. You never know Roy? Middlesbrough's a bit of a drive though! Partizan's a great show, it would be great putting the game on there???

  13. It was an impressive looking game. I must say every time I looked on the French commanders were always the one's smiling!

  14. A splendid looking game indeed Ray…
    All the best. Aly

  15. An excellent looking game Ray!


    1. Cheers Chris, I was very pleased with the look.

  16. It looked a really good setup Ray, was great to see you all there - and so many of you! (was it the cakes that made everyone go along?). Dice gods sometimes just take a hand - Yacinth's magic/motivational speaking was clearly not working too well on the day...
    And why not take it to Partizan, indeed? (!)

    1. You're right, I think it was the cakes that did it! Sorry we didn't even get to have a chat though, and Yacinth needs to pull her finger out!

  17. Great stuff Ray. You did the Rejects proud with that game 👍