Sunday, October 7, 2012

Second Raid

Attended the Second Raid gaming convention on Saturday October 6. There was a good variety of games there with a WWI battle, a naval battle, a French and Indian War game, a Flames of War Nattle of the Bulge game, and several board games. I ended up commanding the American forces in the Battle of the Bulge game.  As the game progressed my intention was to lure the Germans into a position close enough so that my infantry could attack theirs.  In order to accomplish this I had to fall back on both flanks.  However, the platoon on my right ended up being pinned and could not fall back, being caught by the advancing Germans.  As expected he moved one of the two platoons on the other flank towards the village leaving only one platoon to face mine.   I was fortunate that he was only able to roll one hit out of eleven dice for his defensive fire and saved the one hit.  On the other flank his platoon was pinned and only had five dice for defensive fire.  In all my counter attack eliminated about 18 stands of German infantry for the loss of a couple of my infantry stands.  This left the Germans with one platoon at full strength and a second platoon at reduced strength.   Of my original forces I had lost one platoon and had a second platoon badly hurt.  The other two original platoons were still in good shape and I had three more arriving platoons marching towards the village.
Manny Granillo's WWI game
Manny presenting scenario to participants.
2nd table for flames of war game
first table for flames of war game
initial starting positions for naval game
WWI game in progresss
German commander deploying troops
another view of WWI game in progress
American re-enforcements arriving.  105 battery at top left.
German platoon at center left has just destroyed an American platoon.
Two German platoons advance against a single American platoon on other flank.
One of the two German platoons prepares to assault village at bottom center. German platoon in center halted by indirect fire.  STG platoon in top center badly hurt by towed 3" anti-tank gun platoon
German attack has captured part of village and one objective on previous turn.  However, the Americans then launched a counter attack on both flanks.   German platoon at top has been eliminated and Americans are now formed on flank of German advance.
American attack on right flank was not quite as successful.  German platoon was almost eliminated, but Americans failed morale check and had to fall back.
  Same turn.  American re-enforcements have almost reached the town.  Germans conceded game at this point as Americans were in position to reclaim the village. 

September Game at South Bay Game Club

I had originally planned on running Brawner's Farm, which was the first contact at the Battle of Second Manassas.   However, more people than I could accommodate had signed up for the game.  Instead I ran a fictional early war scenario with balanced forces on both sides.  Both armies had 96 bases of infantry, 16 bases of cavalry, and 8 bases of artillery.   The Union army was organized as two separate corps of two, three brigade infantry divisions and a cavalry brigade.   The Union players elected to combine their artillery into a four stand battalion for each corps.  The Confederates had a single corp with one cavalry division, two three brigade infantry divisions, one two brigade infantry division, and one four brigade infantry division.  The Confederates assigned two stands of artillery to each division.  All infantry and cavalry brigades had 8 stands and all troops were green.

At the start of the game both sides plotted which road they would have their forces arrive on and then diced to see if they would arrive at that point or be shifted one entry point left or right.  Most of the Union army ended up shifting right while the Confederates had a more mixed result.  Cards were used to designate units until they were spotted and both sides had additional dummy/scout cards to help hide where their troops were.   The river in the southwest corner could only be crossed at the bridge and two unknown fords.

The initial contact of the battle was an engagement between two scouts at the small village/farm in the eastern half of the center of the table.  As the battle progressed, both sides suffered from traffic jams.   The Union initially gained the upper hand in the center, but was finally forced back and the Confederates were able to claim victory.

Highlights of the battle were a Union Cavalry brigade charging out of the woods on the east end of the battle and attempting to contact a Confederate infantry brigade on the far side of a road with fences on both sides.  In the center the Union had an infantry brigade make a bayonet attack, charging after the retreating Confederates.  This was countered by a Confederate brigade making a bayonet attack into it.

In order to avoid any confusion as to which command was which we left the cards with the units during the battle.  Additional photos and commentary on the battle can be found at

 The battlefield
 Middle of game
 View from other end.
 High point of Union advance
 View from the east end.  Union army being forced back
.  End of the battle.  Confederates in control of the battlefield.