Wednesday, July 19, 2017

War Between The States - Games Turns 137 to 138

Well, strategic cycle 2/64 got off to a good start with the reduction of the fortress protecting New Orleans.

More garrison units built.

Same for the Confederates.

Well, Meade tried, but failed to dislodge Lee.
Lee successfully stormed Washington.
Game Over.

Pity, as Sherman had just about made it to Yazoo City.

For the last two turns the initiative chits for the Union had been 2, 2 against a steady 3 for the Confederates.  Not getting the 4 chit meant Meade lost a chance to attack before Lee was reinforced.  Once Lee had taken the fortress, nothing was going to shift him, or the massive 50 political points he received.  Losses were 10 for the Union and 14 for the Confederates. 

Lots to think about.  I hadn't used the Union navy to help with defence or attack and that might have cost me a bit.  Anyway, now to look at the 2016 rules and the Vassal module. 


  1. Terrible news - I suspect the game designer is a Southern sympathiser!

    1. That maybe, but more likely I just played badly.

  2. That was an interesting campaign to follow, though I found the map hard to read. I would have thought that in a game such as this, though storming Washington D.C. might have been a game-stopper, it would also be hard to achieve against careful Union defence.

    I recall one board game (with a very peculiar combat system) that made it near on impossible for the CSA every to get close to Washington on account of the large garrison that the Union player had to maintain there. To have any real chance of taking the city, the Confederacy (in this game) would have had to strip almost every front of troops.

    I played the Confederacy, and could not cure myself, when given the opportunity, of smacking Union armies with as much strength as I could muster. For some reason I could never understand, hitting a 50,000-strong Union army with 70,000 Confederates was likely to yield a better result than striking with 90,000 in terms of losses incurred. Weird.

    The crux of the game was whether the Union had done enough by November 1864 for President Lincoln to win a second term of office. At that time, I still held Richmond, and had an army in Tennessee (just: Chattanooga). I didn't feel like a winner, but it seems I had resisted strongly enough to sicken the Northern voter...

    What I liked in the game in this series was the personification of the commanders, and trying to figure out what the numbers meant. :-D

    1. Thanks, AARs of boardgames are a different endeavour to miniatures. The visuals are less attractive and the assumptions that the reader is familiar with the game are higher. That said, I've seen a few excellent AARs of boardgames so I think I can do better.

      You are very right about better to attack with 70,000 rather than 90,000. We only clicked to this later in the game. A bit of gamesmanship for sure, but maybe reflects the skill of generals using optimum force. As it is a percentage loss, you want to attack with the minimum number of troops to get you into the best combat ratio column. This is very true of the 401-900% column. If you can't get over 900%, just attack with enough to get 401%.

      I had been pouring reinforcements into the Western Theatre to aid Sherman who was definitely my best general and also with some critical real estate to acquire. But as a result the Eastern Theatre was a bit short of men. Not an issue while I had an army sitting on Washington, but once the Confederates were able to slip round and I was forced to consolidate my army to have a chance against theirs, we then had the dance around Baltimore and it was really only a matter of time...

      The named commanders is one of the real bits of chrome with this old game.

  3. And that is how the South wins. A fun replay to follow and thank you!

    1. Thanks. The Confederate player had experience with this game, although it was from a long time ago.

    2. It would be fun to see you give the ACW a second try using Victory Games' excellent The Civil War.

    3. Yeah, but...

      At the end of the day I had to remind myself that War Between The States is just a game. As such it worked extremely well.

      There is also the investment in learning a system and then the subsequent playing of that system. I am sure I did things wrong and if I can play again I can fix those mistakes.

      Then there is the investment in the acquisition of the game itself, and in an opponent who wants to play the game. The first is easy, the second, less so.

      But you do have a point, but there are a number of games out there at this strategic scale. Oh to have many, many lifetimes to play them all.