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Second Stones River Playtest
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   Historical Gaming -> Horse & Musket DiscussionMessage format
Posted 2016-09-25 8:20 PM (#23825)
Subject: Second Stones River Playtest

Ultimate Veteran

Posts: 1594
Location: Northern hinterlands of Leander

Building on the feedback I got from the first playtest, I adjusted the Confederate order of battle and ran a second game this Sunday at GHG.  The large Confederate divisions were broken down into two brigades which made the total number of infantry units much more even.  I also adjusted the victory conditions slightly. Here is a picture of the army's dispositions at the end of the first turn:

The Confederate attack is firming up in the center.  Its a little hard to see but the Federal attack forming against the rebels left flank looks like it could overpower the division holding the hill (that is what happened in the first playtest) so I commit my meager reserves right away to bolster the threatened flank.  On the other flank my cavalry manuevers for an end run against the Nashville Turnpike, but the move is effectively countered by Union infantry and artillery.


Mike Miller played the Union side and he wasted no time throwing his divisions into a desperate charge up the hill in an attempt to dislodge the rebels and break the Confederate center.


The battle in the center is a meat grinder but the Rebels catch a break when the Union guns fail to move up fast enough to properly support the attack. 



 On the Confederate left the Federals fail miserably to take that hill and fall back in dissarray.  While the attack failed and one of the Union divisions is destroyed, the defenders run low on ammo and the Federal cavalry attempts a flanking manuever to bypass them and take the road to Murfreesburo.


In the center, the Federals have taken the hill but are too weak to hold it as a rebel battery pulls up to cannister range to support the counter-attack.


At the end of the day, both sides pull back to form defensive lines and recover from being low on ammo (so many units ran low on ammo, I ran out of markers for it - I'll have to make some more before the con).  At this point the Union comes within a hairs breath of winning.  A Rebel infantry division had been fighting a Union cavalry brigade on the extreme left of the Confederates line and the second federal cavalry brigade finally got in position to support the attack.  If Mike had rolled a full move for that unit (7+ on 2d6) he would have flanked and defeated the infantry in detail, leaving the road to Murfreesburo wide open to the entire Union cavalry force.  Disaster is averted when he rolls a half move and doesn't make the charge.


The end of the first day is a minor Confederate victory.  It could easily have gone a second day but I think I will tailor the victory conditions a tad and make the convention game the first day only as I only have a 4 hour time slot and I don't think we will have time to fight the second day.  Its a shame because the Union was still in a good position to launch the counter-attack on the second day and might well have won the battle like they did historically.

Dave da Gamer


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