Copyright © 2019, Paul Scrivens-Smith

Copyright © 2019, 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.
This includes you Tango01/Armand you no-mark content thief.

Friday, 10 May 2019

The Battle of Hawkes Farm at Little Wars 2019


A couple of weeks ago I ran a Sharp Practice game for six players at Little Wars using the American Civil War collection.

The scenario was that the Confederates had been using Hawkes Farm as a supply depot, but an outflanking manouver by Union troops had forced an hasty abandonment. Both sides now realised that the farm should be recaptured so set out to claim it.


The game was played as a standard battle scenario, but each commander was given a major and a minor objective of their own that they were not to share with any of the other players.

In many of our Sharp Practice games we forget some of the role-playing aspects of the game and just get on with the battle, so these minor and major objectives allowed us to re-engage with that side of the game.


Each player had a play sheet denoting their troops and special rules along with their own objectives.

Confederates:

Red 1: Captain James Turnbull (Leader, Status III) leading three groups of eight infantry with rifled muskets. You are accompanied by a Preacher.
Red 2: Sergeant Jake Woodward (Leader, Status I) leading a group of six skirmishers with rifled muskets

Major Objective: Lieutenant Carter is a cad and a bounder, without making it too obvious he should not survive this battle.
Minor Objective: You and Lieutenant Carter vie for the affections of Molly Golightly, if you were to suffer a minor wound, she would be sure to favour you.

This command was played by Kevin.


Red 3: First Lieutenant Daniel Carter (Leader, Status II) leading three groups of eight infantry with rifled muskets
Red 4: Sergeant Elijah Barnes (Leader, Status I) leading a group of six skirmishers with rifled muskets, one of them is a ‘Cracker’
Your force is deployed from a fixed secondary deployment point.

Major Objective: The cracker must enter the farmhouse at Hawkes Farm and pick the lock on the desk drawer and retrieve the cash (Task value 16)
Minor Objective: The cracker must survive the game.

This command was played by Allan.



Red 5: First Lieutenant Nathaniel Eppendorf (Leader, Status II) leading two groups of eight cavalry with mixed weapons
Red 6: Second Lieutenant Jonah Fish (Leader, Status I) leading a group of six skirmishers with rifled muskets.

Major Objective: Beat an enemy group or formation by at least ‘Defeated by 2’ with a mounted charge
Minor Objective: Escort the cannon and limber off the southern road.

I initially played this command as we had a player Pat, who was completing an earlier game then he took over.



Blue 1: Captain Horatio Jones (Leader, Status III) leading three groups of eight infantry with rifled muskets. You are accompanied by a Musician.
Blue 2: Sergeant Jebediah Hawkins (Leader, Status I) leading a group of six skirmishers with rifled muskets.

Major Objective: The colonel does not hold you in the esteem that you believe you should be, you need to burn the farm house and barn to the ground. Your men are equipped with tinder boxes and supplies to do this.
Minor Objective: If you are going to lose the game it would look better for you if you were incapacitated, if you lose the game and have been wounded this is a minor objective, not if you win.

Played by Chris.


Blue 3: First Lieutenant Francis Kennedy (Leader, Status II) leading three groups of eight infantry with rifled muskets
Blue 4: Second Lieutenant Pearson Blake (Leader, Status II) leading a group of six skirmishers with rifled muskets

Major Objective: Chicken dinner tonight, secure three bases of chickens from Hawkes Farm and the surroundings
Minor Objective: Any chicken shall do, get at least one base of chickens from Hawkes Farm and the surroundings

Played by Liam.



Blue 5: First Lieutenant Gary Keller (Leader, Status II) leading two groups of eight cavalry with breech loading carbines.
Blue 6: Second Lieutenant Jonah Fish (Leader, Status I) assisting.
Your force is deployed from a fixed secondary deployment point.

Major Objective: Cause any group or formation of Confederate horse to break and run either by fire or steel.

Minor Objective: Escort any civilians to safety

Played by Drew.


The game played out well, initially the players were getting their troops into place and starting the first firefights, it was lucky that I started off playing the Confederate horse as the players soon twigged that I was running the cannon off the table and started to get into achieving their own objectives.


After that it was a free-for-all while players both concentrated on winning the battle, but also achieving their goals. Allan soon had a team in the farmhouse ransacking the safe while Chris was firing the barn. Liams men went hunting down chickens and Drew was escorting civilians to safety all the while the battle raged.

I felt quite sorry for Kevin and shall have to revise Turnbulls objectives as they are rather out of his hands.



Much of the action occurred around a small outbuilding where two Confederate soldiers had gone to present their cards after an 'event', two of Liams Union troops where rounding up chickens and the Union horse were trying to convince the farmer and his daughter to leave all the while Kevins troops were firing volleys into it.



A sharp firefight was taking place on the southern edge of the farm and the Union troops under Chris initially had the upper hand but as his commander was elsewhere the Confederates of Allan were better able to manage their shock.

The firefights, and the battle, were resolved by a Confederate cavalry charge into the Union foot causing the foot to break and the Union morale to collapse.



On the Union side, as the farm was on fire and he had been wounded Chris was our star player having achieved both his objectives first. Liam had captured two bases of chickens. Drew had escorted one civilian to safety.

For the Confederates, Kevin had not achieved any objectives, but that is more my fault than his, Allan had both cracked the safe and made it away with his cracker alive and Pat/myself had scooted away the cannon and performed a victorious cavalry charge.



Many thanks to chum Drew who took most of the photos, I found that I'd only taken a handful during the game.







20 comments:

  1. Superb looking game! Sounds like a good time and a bit chaotic with competing objectives.

    ReplyDelete
  2. First class report, beautiful and funny, I award you the Golden Chicken Award! 🐔🐔🐔🐔

    ReplyDelete
  3. Man, this looks great! Models are beautiful. Would love to see a PDF of handouts so I can produce my own like this.

    Where did you get the Deadwood minis?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've embedded the handout into the blog post. Let me know if you cannot see it.

      The Deadwood figures are from Brigade Games: http://brigadegames.3dcartstores.com/BG-AWE001-Western-Characters-I-5_p_283.html

      Delete
  4. We would of have a great chicken dinner if it wasn't for those damned Rebs! (or Chris' command blocking me from getting to more chickens)

    ReplyDelete
  5. Excellent report, Paul. I don't get to play Sharpe Practice often enough, but am fortunate enough that the games I have played are campaign style events where the narrative and fun of the game is more important than the result...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It does give a great narrative to the games and plays like you are reading a Bernard Cornwall.

      Delete
  6. Wonderful looking game and a clever narrative Paul!

    Christopher

    ReplyDelete
  7. Sounds like a brilliant scenario! A great multi-player game.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Looks and sounds like a great game!
    Best Iain

    ReplyDelete