Saturday, December 31, 2016

Happy New Year!

Happy 2017 to all my followers!  I wish you all the absolutely very best in 2017.  I look forward to more wargaming throughout the year with new and in progress projects coming to fruition!

The past year has seen many games.  Just a quick reflection of what I've done this past year ...

  • Finished up my modern Iraq troops and terrain (including downtown Iraq and desert terrain).  I played several games using this collection - both at home and at the local conventions.
  • I had my first Wargames Illustrated article published (on Galleys, Guns and Glory!) ... quickly followed by another (on modern).
  • I started and completed a lot of work for my modern Russia Resurgent project, including French and Russians.  Canadians are ready to be completed now that I have all the vehicles and miniatures I need (I now have 4 x LAV III, 3 x Leopard 2, and 3 x G-Wagens to go with my infantry platoon from Full Battle Rattle miniatures).
  • I started my LOTR Helm's Deep project - with a good jump into assembling the fortress and by acquiring all the miniatures I needed.  I've also bought 5 x Mamuk's - for an "outside the gates of Minas Tirth" battle between Rohan and Harad.
  • I bought and have finished several fleets for Firestorm Armada - and have played several games now.
  • I continued work on my ACW collection - playing a few games, culminating in the recent Pickett's Charge game.  I look to complete my ACW collection in 2017 and bring my 1st day of Gettysburg (with an impressive 28mm Seminary College model) and Little Round Top scenarios to life on the tabletop.
  • I managed to play some great Napoleonic games throughout the year ... although I feel as though that is the part of my collection that has been neglected a bit this past year.  We have more plans for Napoleonic's in 2017.
  • I flushed out my rules for both ACW (This Hallowed Ground) and Napoleonic's (Empires at War).
  • I created and shared my take on Modern Bolt Action - with updates coming early 2017 to account for v2.0.
  • I dusted off my French and Indian War collection to play a few games of Musket's and Tomahawks.
  • I played several games of Bolt Action WW2 - also completing my DAK army.

Of course, those are the "top of mind" games and projects --- there has certainly been several smaller things throughout the year.

So, more to come in 2017 - I hope you all stay tuned and follow along with the wargaming madness!

Thursday, December 29, 2016

ACW Pickett's Charge AAR

Got together today with the gang to finally play test the Pickett's Charge scenario that I will be running at DundraCon 2017 (February).

Roy Scaife, John Lantz and Matt Hilzendrager took on the role of the rebs ... taking a brigade each (5 infantry units with 2 artillery batteries).  Dan Kerrick, Wade Shows and myself played the stoic Union line.

Scenario outline (including order of battle) can be found here.

This game played out very well!  The Confederate units advanced quickly but got bogged down in the fence line and started taking very heavy casualties closing in on the Union position.  The Confederate attack was --- as expected --- halted.  However, all but one of the Union 2nd line (reserve) units had to be committed to the fray, with the Confederates actually breaking through in the center.

You might ask, how did they break through?  Well, the way we did this is that there are 5 Union infantry units along the "wall" --- each with a single reserve unit behind it.  Think of each Union unit + the reserve unit as a "lane" (like a swim lane).  One of the key deciding factors as to if the Confederates carried the day (essentially lost with honor and after achieving extra-ordinary progress given the situation), was the result of each swim lane at the end of the battle ... which was one of three following possibilities:

  1. Original Union unit is still in place (and the reserve unit has not been committed).  For each lane in which this is the case, +2 VP to the Union.
  2. The reserve unit is committed (original unit has been destroyed/removed from play).  For each lane in which this is the case, +1 VP to the Confederates.
  3. Bot the original unit and reserve unit have been destroyed/removed from play.  For each lane in which this is the case, +2 VP for the Confederates.

By games end, we had a single lane (center) that was broken through (#3 result), a single lane that was with the original unit (#1 result), and 3 lanes with reserve units committed (#2 result).  This put the final VPs for the battle based on accomplishment at 5 for the Confederates and 2 for the Union.  The Confederate division was in bad shape, which was expected, but they "won" the fight.  

In order to make the scenario playable - and victory possible for the Confederates - we didn't count regular VPs and instead determined victory only by the results of each lane.  Two Confederate units from the center managed to break over the wall in the center, but didn't get any farther.  All in all the result was in line with the historical outcome of the battle, but in such a way that was also playable and enjoyable as a wargame.  I still have a few things to finish up for the scenario, but not at all a bad showing for the first time out/play test.  Anyways, lots of pictures below --- note that the pictures are from three different sources ... phones, cameras and such from three different people ...

Picture Group 1

Picture Group 2

Picture Group 3

There you have it.  I'm really happy with the visual aspect of the game ... which is hard to capture with a camera --- nothing can show you the visual spectacle of looking down the Confederate line at "table level" with the naked eye ... something just awe inspiring at that level that for some reason is just not something a camera can capture IMO.