US Support Teams take up positions in Chain of Command Wargame

Sunday, April 15, 2012

A Fire and Fury Battle

Our third attempt at pre game map moving via internet was more ambitious in terms of unit numbers. It was deemed an unmitigated success by all participants and will be, most likely, our method for completing F & F games in the time allotted for weekday games. The situation was as follows:

Terrain effects are described at the bottom of the map. The river is very low and counts as broken. There are 3 VP sites. Each is valued at 3 points. In order to secure a VP site, you must have 1 unspent unit (infantry, cavalry or arty) on the site for 1 complete turn, in any formation. If that site is uncontested, the securing unit may move from that site. Whenever an enemy unit is within 1 square of that site, it again becomes contested.

If both sides each hold a VP site, and the 3rd VP site is contested, a decisive victory is awarded when 2 friendly, unspent units hold the 3rd VP site for 2 complete turns. If unable to hold that position, there will be a tactical victory decided by casualty totals per game rules.

Your scouts have identified a large Rebel force approaching from the west. Your cavalry has been sent out with your orders. You are tasked with locating and destroying that force.

On your 1st move the Union can place their Divisional Commander (MG) anywhere on the board. They can place their cavalry and the horse arty on any of the numbered squares 1, 2, 3, 16, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 40, 10, or 11. The MG, cavalry BG, and/or horse arty need not be in the same square(s). The cavalry and horse arty can be in any formation.

Union infantry brigades enter on turn #1 oat the board edge of squares 2 or 3. They can come on in any formation. The Union field arty arrives on turn #2 at double-quick, and through point "B" in square #1.

Division Commander---MG Schoepf---(able) (Dick Bryant)

1st Brigade. Col. Garrard (green) (Rick Bryant)
33rd IN----crack – 10/7/4 - RM
7th KY--- veteran 8/5/4 - SM
Laurel Home Gd--- trained 10/8/5 - RM

1st Ohio Lt Btry
Crack - HR / LR / HS / HS

2nd Brigade Col. Steedman (able) (Rich Bryant)
14th Ohio---trained - 8/5/4 - RM
17th Ohio---green - 10/9/7 - SM
38th Ohio---crack - 8/5/3 - SM

2nd Ohio Light Btry
Green - HR / HR / HS / HS

Cavalry Regiment---BG Wolford (able) (Dick Bryant)
1st KY Veteran – 12/8/6 - RC

3rd Ohio Lt Btry
Horse Artillery--- Veteran LR / LR / LH

Division Commander ---MG Zolligoffer –(able) (Dick Messier)

1st Brigade Col Stratham – (Green) (Dick White)
15th MS—Crack—10/7/4 – RM
11th TN---Veteran---8/5/4—SM
17th TN---Trained---10/6/4—RM

1st Btry TN arty
Crack – HR/HS/HS

2nd Brigade Col. Battie – (able)(Dick Messier)
20th TN---Trained---8/6/4—RM
29th TN---Green---10/9/7—SM
30th TN --Crack----8/5/3-- SM

2nd Btry TN arty
Green – HR/HS/HS

2nd TN Cavalry – Lt. Col Beaulieu (able) (Dick White)

4th Btry TN Arty
Horse Artillery--- Veteran LR / LR / LH

On their 1st move the Confederates can place their Divisional Commander (MG) anywhere on the board. They can place their cavalry and the horse arty on any of the numbered squares 35,34,25,23,26,23,22,37,32,38,31,39,30. The MG, cavalry BG, and/or horse arty need not be in the same square(s). The cavalry and horse arty can be in any formation.

Confederate infantry brigades enter on turn #1 at the board edge of squares 34 or 35. They can come on in any formation. The Confederate field arty arrives on turn #2 at double-quick, and through point "A" in square 35.

TURN 1: Both sides place on and Union first move
   The Union moved its horse artillery and cavalry up on the left to defend against any quick move by the Rebs to move agains the Union left.

TURN 2: Union and Reb Arty arrives.  Rebs continue their advance as Union prepares to assault central 3VP Hill.
 In turn 2, the Union Horse Arty was able to fire on the passing Reb Cav Column causing the loss of a stand and disordering them.

TURN 3: Union moves towards its right and moves the cav into cover. Rebels move to their left.
Turn 3, the Union became wary of the Rebekls Horse Arty moving up to the ridge and pulled theirCavalry back into cover. They also formed thier Rgts into line. The Rebs continued the advance.

TURN 4: The Rebels have moved their cav to occupy the central 3VP hill and the Union assault column is in place in the center. Union arty and Bdes are occupying the ridge line on their left.
Turn 4 saw the Union Horse Arty fall back as they had two Rebel arty batteries arrayed against them.  This is the position when the umpire, Jack Breen, decided that the sides were in a position to go to the game board.

Union set-on as per the map of TURN 4

Rebel set up as per the map of TURN 4

The Union pushed on to the ridge line occupying the 3VP hill in the center of the ridge. The Rebels had already taken the 3VP hill in the center of their ridge but their caavalry also occupied the central 3 VP hill. As the Union center advanced on the hill held by the cavalry, the Rebs abandoned it and moved the Cavalry to their right. The Union moved quickly to take the central hill with a Bde. 

Rebel Cavalry occupies hill between the ridges. The Union Brigade can be see advancing from the ridge line on the left

A Rgt. of the Union Bde reaches the 3VP hill as the Rebel cavalry abandons it.

The Union Cavalry (Lower Right) prepares to charge the limbered Rebel Horse Arty and Cavalry (Lower Left) as the Union Bde fully occupies the central hill. This was broken up by the Rebel Arty on the ridge.
The major Rebel push was on their left, but they ran into the massed fire power of 8 Union Batteries as well as the Infantry brigade deftly handled by Rick Bryant.

The Union guns (upper and lower right) decimated the Rebel charge of 3 Rgts and then the Union Bde came out of the Rough to meet them. It was at this point that the Rebels passed the "Heavy Casualties" level.

The Union breaks through against the decimated Confederate left.

The 3VP center hill still contested at game end
The Rebs went over the "Heavy Casualties" level in this charge and decided to hold and even the score - forcing the Union across that level. They almost succeeded but fell short. The central hill was deemed as still unsettled, so did not count in the VP tally. It ws the elvel of Rebel casualties that fianlly decided the affair in the Union favor.
This is the 3rd attempt at pre-positioning a battle via e-mail so as to finish it in the time alloted in an evening. I beleive that it has shown the efficacy of the process and we will continue to use the system for Fire & Fury as well as for other rule systems that can benefit by the technique. See Kreig V readily comes to mind.

Monday, April 2, 2012


Havoc is a small local convention - now being held at Maironis Park, Shrewsbury MA – that has been in continuous existence for 28 years! I have not missed this Friday evening to Sunday afternoon venue but 2 or 3 times.
I usually put on one game, at least, and this year was no exception as I ran a slightly different version of the BUNA Cross Fire battle that is described earlier in this BLOG. The changes were a reduction in the strength of the Japanese from 4 sqds/platoon to 3 and a loss of 2 bunkers. I think that this was a more balanced game. Among the attendees signed up for BUNA I identified two to play the Japanese and American commanders and e-mailed them the necessary info so that they could pre-convention plan their defense and/or attack. Mike Tribou of NH took the Japanese command and Cory O’Connor took the Americans. A first for me, was a mother-son team on the Japanese side. When asked , Kim Caren told me that she was the wargamers and her son, Alfred was her support. This was the opposite of what I expected Both played an excellent game. Bob Yates was the other US commander and won the award that each game master was given to pass out as best player. He did very well for someone who had never seen the CF before.

The US won by 1 VP but a small win is still a win and many kudos go to Cory for his well thought out plan and execution under what were, at time, some trying conditions.

Mike Tribou took several photos of this game as well as of others that I will publish here.

Kim and Alfred ponder the next move

The highlight of the convention for me was to play a couple of Day of Battle Medeval battles against the author, Chris Parker. I was defeated in the first game but won a crushing victory in the second, having thrown 9 hits against him vs. his 3 in the final melee! I hope that puts an end to my dice curse at the club.

Chris Parker' awaits Bryant's onslaught
The Final Melee

The low point of the weekend was to discover that a long anticipated Seekrieg game that I had signed up for on Friday night had been changed to Sunday morning by its game master without any notification by either him of the convention organizers – they probably didn’t know about it.

I don’t know how many attended – its usually small, in the 300 range and I found that the Friday night events seemed more sparsely attended than in previous years. But Saturday was crowded with some 20 games going on and several dealers present.