Copyright © 2018, Paul Scrivens-Smith

Copyright © 2018, Paul Scrivens-Smith

All rights reserved. This work may not be reproduced, in whole or in part, without the prior written permission of the creator.
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Wednesday, 21 February 2018

The first Battle of Old Sauk Meadows



Thursday evening saw the next instalment of our Sharp Practice American Civil War series. Usual leader of the Union Sharpshooters, Captain Binsack called off with a bad attack of bone spurs, Seth was unable to attend. It would just be down to myself and Bruce.

I reused the forces from our last game:

Confederates

  • Leader, Status III 
    • Leader, Status I  
    • Three groups of 8 Infantry, Rifled Muskets 
    • Musician
    • Ammunition Cart
  • Leader, Status II 
    • Three groups of 8 Infantry, Rifled Muskets 
  • Leader, Status I 
    • One group of 6 Skirmishers, Rifled Muskets 
  • Leader, Status I 
    • One group of 6 Skirmishers, Rifled Muskets 


Union

  • Leader, Status III 
    • Leader, Status I 
    • Three groups of 8 Infantry, Rifled Muskets 
    • Musician 
    • Holy Man 
  • Leader, Status II 
    • Leader, Status I
    • Three groups of 8 Infantry, Rifled Muskets 
  • Leader, Status I 
    • One group of 6 Skirmishers, Rifled Muskets 
  • Leader, Status I 
    • One group of 6 Skirmishers, Rifled Muskets 
  • Leader, Status I 
    • One group of 6 Skirmishers, Rifled Muskets 

The Union have quite a few more leaders and an extra group of skirmishers, but their troops are Surly and the Confederate infantry do get Rebel Yell, although it seems precious opportunity to use it.

I set out the table as below and we would be playing a meeting engagement. Reusing the last forces and playing a meeting engagement? Lack of planing? Guilty as charged!



I did get to use some of the terrain I recently made and think it looks quite good in place.





As we are playing quite large games, one thing I am trialling is putting an extra blank chit/card into the deck/bag if either player has more than 10 Leader / Command cards in the deck, the blank card has two roles:

  1. If drawn as the first card out of the deck it counts as a Tiffin
  2. If drawn at any other time it breaks a sequence of Command Cards counting towards a random event.

Bruce took the Union force and myself the Confederates. We both rolled up a Force Morale of 11, it may be a long game!

In a departure from our usual opening moves, both sides bought their formations on in column in a better effort to get them into position before they deployed into line, and despite the long ranges we have with the Minie rifles it seems to be a better option.




Both sides moved to get advantage of ground in the centre with both forces using skirmishers in the rougher terrain on the flank. The 'spare' unit of Union skirmishers were pushed far out on the right where they made their way through the farmland in the hope of outflanking the Confederates.

The Confederate initially pushed one of their columns into line and both Union forces deployed blasting it and forcing it to fall back through the end of their second line carrying on some shock. But this left the Confederates with one line still not having fired its initial volley and this was used to some devastating effect on the Union line led by their commanding officer, who then suffered the indignity of a Random Event leaving them low on ammunition.



The Confederate skirmishers now came into their own, with four out of six shots hitting the Union line, Bruce allocated the hits amongst his troops and subsequently rolled four sixes - ouch! We then rolled for officer casualty and the Major was shot dead from his saddle!





The Confederates took full advantage of this, as the first line fell back to rally shock, the second line accumulated enough Command Cards, rallying shock, unleashing their volley and with a whoop and a holler throwing themselves on the disorganised Union line who were forced back in some disorder.




The flanking Union skirmishers took their opposite number in the rear causing them to break and run, but another Rebel Yell from the Confederates saw the main Union line shatter and their morale collapse with it.

Finally a victory from the Confederacy! Rumour has it that Captain Binsack has recovered from his debilitating bone-spurs and is spoiling for revenge!