Sunday, July 21, 2013

Historicon Report: Battle Along the Mississippi

The second game Mike and I ran at Historicon was a set-piece battle loosely based on the Vicksburg campaign (it was along the Mississippi river, which was about the only link to Vicksburg).  The battle featured a slightly larger confederate force attacking an Union force.  The objective was simple capture at least two of three objectives.  The objectives were the chicken coop in the lower right, the hill in the center, and a small plot in the upper right corner.  The first picture shows the initial setup.  Both sides had 3 brigades on the board and one in reserve.  The CSA had 8 batteries of artillery to the Unions 5, but that would change later in the game when the captured ironclad (see the previous post) makes an appearance.

 A shot down the confederate line.  The CSA had four players (each with a brigade).  All of the miniature on the table are Perry.

 A shot down the Union line - similar set up to the CSA with four players each with a brigade.  We used black powder as the rule set with some minot simplifications to facilitate convention play.  All of the players we had for the game were great and it was a real pleasure for Mike and I to host them for a few hours of dice rolling.

 The initial confederate advance.  The original plan was (I think) to seize and hold the hill in the center with two brigades and send the other two to attack the Union's right flank.  At least that was the initial plan....

 More units advance and a Union calvary unit attempts to charge the CSA guns but rolls poorly on the order dice and comes up short in a bad spot.

 The Confederate reserves arrive and march towards the Union right flank.  The Union reserved (4 calvary regiments) arrive the following turn along the river edge.

 The Union shuffles back trading real estate to keep the advancing confederates under fire - it was a good strategy.  The initial confederate plan of just holding the hill got thrown out for a general advance - it may not have been a sound strategy but it was great fun and just what a convention game is all about!  Good Show!

 Oops- the capture Tennessee shows up - think super "artillery battery" in Black Powder terms,  The confederate brigade on the extreme right begins to take a pounding.
 The main confederate attack forms up slowly due to some command dice issues.  One of the really fun things about black powder is the command system which is very clean but can lead to some unpredictable results.

 More confederate advances but losses are mounting....

 FInally the main attack strikes!
 The high water mark of the attack.

 The confederate right flank collapses as it's exposed flank is pounded by the Tennessee and Union reinforcements.

 Another shot of the climatic Union counter attack.  We called the game at this point with the CSA having two of four brigades broken and a limited chance to regain the initiative.

A view of the guns from the Tennessee.

All-in-all it was a great game and I'm very grateful for the help Mike and I got from the players - they were a great bunch.  We also had very nice prize support from Architects of War and every player got a certificate for store credit at the AofW booth.

I'm looking forward to my next convention game!


James Brewerton said...

fantastic looking game.
Peace James

Craig C said...

Great looking game. Well done with the table, it looks fantastic

Mark Rabuck said...

Hey, Miles, thanks for a great game! Yeah, it was reckless for us confederates to advance beyond the hill, but Black Powder being what it is, we were getting hammered by inferior numbers of Union troops and guns. &*#$%@ command roll failures! But we got the chance to do some hammering of our own, and the game board and minis were just spectacular. Thanks again!


Doc Smith said...

It's a lot of fun hosting a game at a Con - handing the command over to others as it were and seeing how they go. Dunno how many times you ran the game but I bet you get a different result with each player! The Black Powder command system is great and there's always one or two really decent 'blunders' to look forward to in every game!

Great looking game and table set-up - those massive forest sections look particularly spectacular.


John said...

Awesome game Miles! Really happy I got to participate, even if I did learn some painful lessons with the Union cavalry firsthand.

I've got a few gaming questions to run by you if you have a chance. Could you send a quick email to so I can reply via email? Thanks!

jmilesr said...

I just sent you an email

Dirty Jon said...

Epic! I cannot believe I missed this -- sorry, Miles!