Wednesday, 16 November 2016

Longstreet - Four Player Mini Campaign Game 2 AAR

This is the AAR for Scenario 2 of our four player three game Mini Longstreet Campaign.

For those of you who don't know in the 1970's Axiom released an anti war song 'Arkansas Grass' here is a selection from the lyrics:
So gaily we marched with the Grey and the Red,
To lick 'em first time like the good General said,
With nary a thought that so very few would go home...
and regarding this game never were there truer words written!

The History
After the meeting engagement at Grey’s Farm on June 29th between the forces of the USA's Vth Corps and Early's Division of the CSA's IInd Corps the two units re-joined the fray the very next day. Despite orders to both Generals on the scene from their Commanders to hold off on any action until more troops could be concentrated the battle was resumed with great fervor!
After receiving a bloody nose at the Battle of Grey’s Farm the Vth Corps had withdrawn northwards to new defensive positions and the Confederate forces pursued them cautiously while their regiments  regrouped after the battering they had taken.
Confederate General Early disregarded the suggestions of his subordinates regarding his plan of attack. General Skyes had picked good ground on which to fight and they believed they should use a flanking manoeuvre of force the Bluebellies out in the open. Early ignored their entreaties and announced, ”I have these Yankees in front of me where I want them! We’ll beat them here and now!”
Hay’s Brigade were ordered to advance on the left and push the Yankees off the two hills known as the Little and Big Round Tops While Gordon’s Brigade would attack the Northerners anchored in a walled farm area on their extreme flank and “Roll ‘em up!”
Amongst the Union regiments the smell of fear filled the air as the massed Confederate ranks streamed forward toward them, it looked like nothing could stop the Rebel 'wave' from crashing over the Union’s defensive line and swamping it!
As it turned out the Federal’s proved their metal and their line held, but just! The Yankees on the Big Round Top and their cavalry on their extreme right flank were pushed back, a great roar of success echoed across the battlefield as the Rebels crested the crucial hill top. Meanwhile around the walled farm even though the Federal artillery and cavalry were aggressive and moved forward slowing the Rebels there was little the men in blue could do as they were pushed remorselessly back and looked on the verge of breaking.
After successfully clearing the high ground Hay’s mean entrenched themselves on the Big Round Top. but the Federals of the 2nd Division of the Vth Corps weren't done they counter charged and broke the right of Hays line and started to turn the flank of the attackers the action for the hill tops was in the balance!
At the farm USA Brigadier General Crawford’s Division held its ground against three determined Rebel assaults form Gordon’s Brigade they were pressed back but refused to break.
At this point Yankee reinforcements arrived reinforcing both the their flanks and the artillery of Arye’s right flank unlimbered in perfect position to rake the Confederates on the Big Round Top the balance was tipping in favour of the Northerners!
Despite fresh Union troops appearing on the field Gordon urged his men forward again, this was their forth attack and despite their fury all the grey clad regiments were held except for the men of the 60th and 61st Georgia Regiments. These brave men broke through the Federal lines and were just yards from their objective the farmstead but they found themselves alone as every other regiment in the Brigade were halted and White cavalry guarding their open flank had been brushed aside by fresh Yankees…meanwhile at the Big Round Top even though the Rebels held the hill top there right flank was being driven in by relentless Yankee pressure and was only a whisker from collapsing…

The battle was over, the Confederate forces especially those of Gordon’s Brigade facing the walled farm had taken extensive casualties and as the last actions of the battle unfolded the Rebels morale collapsed and the Rebel regiments streamed southward ending the Fight For Round Top Ridge!

USA victory
CSA gained and held one objective (Alan)
Alan 6 Epic Points, lost 14 bases, Epic Points running total is 9
Dave 3 Epic Points, lost 12 bases, Epic Points running total is 7
Pete 8 Epic Points, lost 23 bases, Epic Points running total is 13
Stu 4 Epic Points, lost 11 bases, Epic Points running total is 9

The game ran smoothly even with four people talking at cross purposes. I blew acouple of things fogot a roll for danger when a personal trait was employed and also short changed two charges a few dice (one didn't mater though 2 bases v 2 units totally 10 bases).
A couple of crucial interupt cards helped save some lives but there were no game changers and across the game no one was helped by lucky dice. The Rebel Yells helped the Confederates get a bit further than they would have. Alan asked me advice at one point on whether to use a Rebel Yell card or Charge Bayonets I should have been more forceful and forced him to use the Rebel Yell but he went with the latter and it delayed his advance for a turn, ya live and learn.
Once I saw my chances of any victory were gone and the other Confederate force was fading I just charged and charged again...Epic Points here I come!
Having the camaign in a single year is also helping keep the games closer with both sides having similar decks, same number of cards but I still believe the 1863 deck slighty favours the South.

Some Pictures!
Gordon's and Smith's CSA Brigades deploy on the Rebel right to attack the 2nd Division of the Union Vth Corps, commanded by Ayres located around the walled farm...
Hay's and Avery's CSA Brigades deployed on the Rebel left advance to attack the 3rd Division of the Union Vth Corps, led by Crawford defending the Big and Little Round tops...
The men of the Rebel left get their first sight of the Bluebellies in the distance as they crest a hill!
Close up of the right flank of Hay's Rebs attacking the Federals guarding the gap between the two 'Round Tops'...
Gordon's Confederates advance from left to right toward the walled farm and its stout defenders...
Ayres Union men left of picture face the Rebel horde, note the right of the Confederate attack line looks a bit thin on men...
Crawford's Division of Federals looks like they are about to be overrun by Rebels but looks are deceiving and even though pushed back they hold the line! You can just see top left the Yankee guns being taken in the flank by CSA infantry as they boldly advance to delay the attackers!
The defenses of Big Round Top and Union flank are successfully pushed back in the foreground of the picture, ominously for the Rebs in the background of the picture Hay's men are being given 'what for' by the Bluebellies...
Gordon's Rebel's at the games end, General Crawford's Fresh regiment can be seen bottom right ready to disperse the depleted Rebels!
Brigadier Hay's Confederate position at the Big Round Top at the game end, they are in peril as the Union regiments top right in picture push back their right flank and are close to cutting them off!
The 'High Water Mark' of the Confederacy, Gordon's 60th and 61st Georgia Regiments break the Union lines...but are ultimately unsuccessful as all their supporting troops are pushed back!

One game left in the Mini campaign and we're playing it next meet!

Oh and the link to the Axiom classic on Youtube is...

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