Thursday, 8 March 2012
Nagashino 1575 refight 3/4/12
Continuing with the theme of Pike and Shot, my son and I decided to refight Nagashino.
This battle was fought between Takeda Katsunori (who incidently is the ancestor of my son via his mother’s Japanese name) and Oda-Tokugawa.
Having viewed the Osprey Warrior Samurai 1550-1600, the color plate of this battle influenced our choice of battlefield. My son has also seen The Last Samurai, and thought that he’d like to use Samurai Cavalry smash into Samurai infantry. What he didn’t truly understand is the concept of entrenched infantry.
At this battle, the Takeda Samurai attempted to use their tactic of cavalry charges to break infantry. The Takeda were the samurai who believed that firearms were not pure enough for Japanese warfare. They also believed that the weather would be in the pouring rain. Thus when they charged the barricades, they were surprised to meet concentrated musketry. Roughly 10,000 Takeda Samurai were killed in futile frontal assaults. After this battle, firearms were no longer sneeared at.
In our refight, the Oda were entrenched in three redoubts. Each contained musketeers and were fronted either by yari armed pikemen or by chiveaux du fries. The Takeda army aligned themselves with their left flank comprising all of their archers. Their centre was formed by katana and pike armed warriors while the right flank was comprised of all their cavalry.
In the Takeda opening move, they advanced toward the redoubts. The archers began to rain arrows down on the musketeers before they could pour their fire into the approaching charge. As their gunners began to fall the Oda rushed their pikes out which momentarily forced the charge back. As the cavalry honed in, the muskets began to shoot them down. However, the Takeda were using their horses to draw the fire of the gunners. The archers shot down the defenders who were overwhelmed by the Takeda advance.
The end result was the destruction of the Takeda cavalry including Katsunori, however his infantry was able to smash his nemesis off the field.
Ian then told me, he copied my tactic of the musket block from our last battle. Duh-oh! He’s a clever little fellow for 6. Guess Daddy will have to hone up on pike and shot tactics.
Oda is left on the battlefield. Contrary to the way of Bushido, these samurai have run away to continue the fight in the hills.