We used a rather large L shaped table (about 23 ft long x 20 ft?)
A view from my end of the table. Most of the following shots will concentrate on the action at my end of the table as that's where I was focused (surprise/surprise).
At last! 5:30 pm (in real time), Adam had retreated Ward's Brigade from the Devil's Den to save it fro the threat of rebel artillery. This allowed my brigade to march in unopposed and settle down to some warm soup on their fires. All was going well when the yankees charged back up the hill catching us by surprise. Contact at last- bout bloody time!
And so at the end of the first day. McLaw's division to my immediate left (run by Roger of the Rebel Barracks fame) had been decimated but my own division had captured 2 of the important victory point features for almost no losses- or action too for that matter. So overnight both sides got to regroup and reposition their defences. In the morning there was a slight miscommunication between the rebel commanders. Dave and I thought we were still to try to take Little Round Top (an major VP if we did) so put our elite brigades on our far right hoping to turn the union line. Unfortunately we then realised we were meant to actually hold what we'd captured-oops!
The thick blue line- at least 8 brigades faced us on Little Round Top- gulp!
The high water mark. My brigade managed to get just beneath the summit of Little Round Top and was then sent packing by a huge union counter charge of 3 brigades. All Hood's brigades were now worn so we went back onto the defensive and held on to what we had gained.
And so the game ended. Time was called with Dave and I holding on to Big Round Top and Roger in charge of the Devil's Den. I was a bit surprised when the game ended thinking it was still in the balance. We Rebs were taking a pounding but had managed to captured more of the key terrain features and once losses were taken into account had a marginal (by rather Phyrric) victory- 116 pts to 108.
The Southern Strategists put on a great spectacle but I'm not sure I liked the rules- not decisive enough for my liking- I think maybe 3 brigades were destroyed overall. Unfortunately Martin had spent several weeks getting his army ready and did not even get to deploy on day one so flagged day 2! Dave and myself didn't get any units into contact until the very end of day one- though had 3 hours of bloody assaults this morning. Kent found himself in a similar situation on the far end of the table. Action hotted up for us on day 2 but the game still played a bit slow for my liking- not much that could be done about that though.
It was an enjoyable game and everyone seemed to have fun, and I thoroughly enjoyed the banter between Roger/myself and Dave B on the Rebel side vs Adam, Nick (Dan Sickles) and the other Dave on the Union side. Lots of fun at the expense of die rolls, but the rules themselves? Not sure they were ideal for the size of the game especially as we used the 1:200 scale so had very large brigades making it difficult to get enough decisive results or bleed units white and make any real headway. Still the game looked spectacular and there were many, many moments of anguish and triumph up and down the table as the fickle dice gods made their mark. At the end of the day that's what it is all about.
Thanks to Geoff for umpring, Roger & the Strategists for putting the game on, and all the guys for showing up and getting into the spirit of the game.