Showing posts with label battle cry. Show all posts
Showing posts with label battle cry. Show all posts

Monday, 31 July 2017

Battle Cry - Antietam

Last month I played  couple of games of Battle Cry, took photos and then forgot to blog it. Unforgivable.

Anyway, here they are. To be honest I've forgotten the details of exactly what happened, so you can just enjoy the terrible pictures without too much text.

I used 6mm figure, two bases to a unit and small stones marking casualties.

Here's the initial setup, with the sparse Confederate defence line at the bottom of the picture.

Attack across Burnside's Bridge.

A doomed attack on the sunken road.

Foothold over the bridge.

The attack on the road is driven back.

A.P.Hill's division comes to the rescue.

Union troops filter through the northern woods.

Confederates defend the cornfield.

The Union driven back at the bridge. I think they lost quite badly.

A second game. In this oe the sunken road was quickly cleared.

Burnside's bridge was still a tough nut to crack. I think the Union won this one in the end.

Sorry about the terrible lighting on the photos; we get glorious bright sunshine even in the winter here.

Saturday, 24 June 2017

Battle Cry - Glorieta

Fired up by my ACW game on Thursday, I found a Battle Cry scenario I'd downloaded years ago on my hard-drive and decided to give it a try this afternoon. It's for Glorieta, one of the actions fought during the New Mexico campaign of 1862, and therefore within my favoured Trans-Mississippi theatre.

Here it is:

I ran it solo, using a Battle Cry variant of the rules I tried out HERE. The rules for each player turn were:

Draw one card.

Roll D6 equal to Command Cards - 1
+1 Dice if you played a Scout card last turn
-1 Dice for each Fight Back card you currently hold.

Each 5 or 6 gives you an extra card draw. Choose one card to play. Discard the rest.

If you choose Fight Back as your card, keep it to one side, then play the top card from the deck (regardless of what it is, but discarding it and drawing again if it is another Fight Back). When a side has at least one Fight Back card, and it is possible for them to play it, you decide if they will or not. However roll a combat die. If the die is a Star, then your decision is reversed. So if you choose not to play it, but roll a Star, then it is actually played. If you choose to play it and roll a Star, then it isn't played. So long as a side has a Fight Back card, they roll one less dice per card when determining how many cards they draw (see above).

The rules worked pretty smoothly, and gave a couple of good games. The first was something of a walkover for the Confederates; they got good rolls for cards, rolled some excellent combat dice and beat the Union by six flags to two. Their artillery in the centre proved especially effective.

In the second game the Union put up a better fight, and the Confederate advance was less organised. The Confederates managed to push up to the ranch, and almost took it, but a counter move by the Union saw them driven off. towards the end both sides were rolling sets of combats that could have won them the game, but the Confederates just managed to pull off a victory, five medals to three.

I took photos during both games, but not really with a view to writing a report, so they're posted here just to give an idea of how the games looked. Here's the scenario set up.

I used my 6mm figures. I have enough bases to substitute for the original plastic figures one-to-one, but I wanted to see how the game would look with a lower density of bases

I used two bases for each unit, and small stones to mark hits.

This meant that units didn't completely fill the hex, so there's room for terrain pieces as well, if I decide to go down that route at a later date.

I don't think that the look of the game suffered with the lower figured density, and the markers were unobtrusive and no problem to use.

I did consider two guns for each artillery unit, but decided that they looked nicer with a gun and limber.

I'll try some of the larger scenarios with this setup, and see how they look.

Friday, 14 February 2014

Battle Cry!

With all of the square-grid games I've been playing recently I was up for some more Battle Cry, and Caesar was happy to oblige. For various reasons our session kept getting postponed, but last night we finally got down to it.

We played two scenarios, both from the 1862 Kentucky campaign. And we used my 6mm figures rather than the ones that came with the game.

Here's Caesar contemplating his cards as we play the Perryville scenario. He played the Union, who have a stronger force, but with a lot of it wedged behind a river and rough terrain, so slow to enter the game.

I had a smaller force of Confederates, and launched the usual furious assault.

Unfortunately Caesar had the cards to oppose it, and neat positions like this - artillery on a hill with a solid infantry line in front of it that it could shoot over.

We had a nice little cavalry action. Mine came off better and, in fact, worked its way behind Caesar's line, doing a small amount of damage before the cards and dice caught up with it.

Caesar's reserve infantry pushed forward on the other flank

Eventually it rolled over my limited resistance, to give Caesar a 7-4 victory.

Perryville was fun, but along scenario, so we decided to try something quicker, and play it twice, swapping sides. We went for the other Kentucky Campaign scenario, Richmond, which took place about five weeks before Perryville. Here's the setup, with the numerically superior (for once) Confederates in the foreground. The Union are positioned well on a line of hills, but inferior in cards.

Both games were close and fun, with the Union desperately holding a line against a fierce Confederate assault.  I played the Confederates in the first game, and won it, albeit with a close score (6-5, I think).

We then swapped, and I got to try the Union defence. Their position looks strong.

Caesar was up to the job, though - the Confederates won again, 6-4. Here his cavalry pushed a Union unit out of their field fortifications.

Richmond is a very interesting scenario that I'm keen to try again sometime.

All of the games saw the usual cunning card-play, with Forced March being popular, and useful, in all games to make sudden assaults with a mass of infantry. In two games we had cases where a player had both Bombard cards as well, allowing them to swiftly position artillery on one turn, and punish the enemy line with double-fire on the next.

The 6mm figures looked great in the game. If I was doing them again, though, I'd use narrower bases - maybe 20mm x 15mm. At present they fill the hexes nicely, but what if I wanted to make proper 3D terrain tiles, eh? There's no room for terrain and the figures at the moment.

Ralph and Bryan played Flames of War, so here's something we've not seen yet this year - one of Ralph's burning tanks.

Monday, 3 February 2014

A Square Grid In Riskovia

We're playing Maurice again on Thursday, so I dredged my gloriously unpainted Risk figures out of their cupboard this evening. And I noticed that two bases from each Maurice unit fitted into a square on my chessboard, and I thought ... why not?

I made the rules up as I went along. The basics were the same as my other square-grid Battle Cry derived games, but I thought I'd throw in some 18th Century specifics, derived from Maurice, mostly.

Movement distances were the same, but Artillery got a marker once it had fired. It couldn't then move again until the marker was removed - which cost it an activation.

Combat factors were reduced to reflect the fact that cavalry wasn't really shock-cavalry and infantry firepower wasn't as deadly as in the Mexican Adventure games. Infantry fought at 2-1, whilst cavalry fought with 3 dice, but automatically lost one if fighting Infantry. Artillery fired at 3-2-2-1.

The biggest change was that units could be activated in groups. The activation of a particular unit type could include a group of units, so long as they were all adjacent to each other and  on either the same rank or same file of the board. They all had to be in the same terrain as well. Activated units could move individually, but had to end orthogonal and adjacent to at least one other unit in the same activated group. Any units in the activated group that were eligible to battle could do so.

I used the close combat and troop quality rules I have been trying out.

I gave both armies six units of Infantry (two Elite) and three units of Cavalry (one Elite), plus one unit of Artillery. I didn't bother with a General on either side. I set victory at five flags, and gave both sides three activation dice.

I didn't take pictures of the game itself, but posed a few afterwards. The Riskovians won a crushing victory over their Sans Couleur foes, destroying five of their units for the loss of only one of their own. The group activation and low fire dice made for a wonderfully linear game, with infantry blazing away at each other for several turns. San Couleur attempted a cavalry flank move through some woods, but it was too slow to affect the game. The battle was won by the Riskovian elite infantry steadily eroding the San Couleur centre with deadly musketry, whilst their elite cavalry held the flank.

It was a lot of fun, and I'm going to do it again another day.

Here's the posed pictures.

The Riskovians fire another volley.

Their elite cavalry rides up in support.

The Sans Couleur infantry fall back, before routing from the field.

Troop Quality Update

In a post yesterday I proposed an alternative way of representing troop quality in 'Battle Cry' style games. Today I played a few quick games using my Mexican Adventure armies; I tried the encounter game and the San Lorenzo scenarios, playing each a couple of times.

The Encounter scenario gave me a game with plenty of militia units. The changes gave them a little more resilience, but a bad set of rolls could cause them to collapse quickly. This was more how I want them to behave, rather than just being very brittle.

I varied the San Lorenzo scenario to include an elite infantry unit - the French Foreign Legion. Here they are advancing on the village, with their general in direct command.

The militia behaved as in previous games, but I was pleased that militia cavalry seemed to have a little more staying power. The elite infantry got a thorough testing, though. Pinned in front of the village by Mexican musketry, they resisted several rolls of '6' (crossed swords) which would otherwise have destroyed them, and survived a turn or so longer than they should have done.

Here they are being terribly elite:

Three hits on them already, and only one required to remove them. And the Republicans kept rolling sixes.

Anyway, from those few games I would conclude that the changes don't seem to have radically broken the game and certainly vary the performance of units. I'll keep trying them out.

Sunday, 2 February 2014

Troop Quality In The Battle Cry Variant

In some of the scenarios I have been playing using the Battle Cry based rules (which really need a name of their own) I have played with troop quality. Battle Cry itself doesn't really cover this; one scenario has a unit which starts with a strength of three figures instead of four, but that's about it. In the games I have played so far I have adopted this approach. So a normal unit can take four hits if it's Infantry or three hits if Cavalry or Artillery. Elite units get an extra hit, whilst Militia units have one less hit. This make Militia cavalry, particularly, very vulnerable; not necessarily a bad thing, but somewhat frustrating.

However I was pondering an alternative approach this evening, which I may try I the next game I play, but which I thought I'd throw open to the floor. This is to keep the number of hits a unit can take constant, but vary how likely they are to be inflicted.

I will use Battle Cry terminology, followed by the numbers I use in my actual games.

A normal unit is hit when its symbol comes up, or by a crossed sword (6).

An Elite unit is only hit if its symbol comes up. It can ignore the first crossed sword (6) rolled against it by a particular firing unit.

A Militia unit is hit if its symbol comes up, by a crossed sword (6). In addition the first flag (5) which actually causes the unit to retreat also inflicts one hit on it.

How does that sound?

And, like I say, I need a name for these rules; they're acquiring a life of their own.

Saturday, 1 February 2014

Salem Church Revisited

Having tried the square-grid, cardless Battle Cry variant for the Mexican Adventure, I tried it with an American Civil War battle this afternoon. This has a slight Coals To Newcastle thing about it; using rules adapted from a game about the ACW to refight an ACW battle, but I thought that it would be fun.

I chose Salem Church as my battle. The Confederates had five Infantry and Artillery and a General. The Union had six Infantry, two Artillery and a General. Neither side had cavalry, so rolls pertaining to them were ignored - treated as 'no effect'.

I set victory at four flags. The Union could gain a flag by passing through/controlling a square just behind the Church. This was to encourage an advance on their part, and a defensive action of the part of the Confederates. Both sides had three activation dice.

Here's the Union in their initial positions, with the Confederate defensive line beyond them.

The Union advanced their right, and the Confederates opened fire, inflicting some hits.

The Union returned fire, inflicting hits back.

The Confederates lost a unit on their left, but the two Union units there were looking shaky as well.

The Union turned on the centre, and drove off the Confederate artillery.

They received a deadly volley from the woods in return, though.

The focus of the action now switched to the other flank, with a fierce push and shove between the church and the woods.

A Union advance through the woods ran into some fierce resistance.

The Union regrouped, ready for another advance.

In they went again, with artillery support this time. But the Confederates held firm.

The closing stages of the battle.

Both sides were now one unit from breaking. The Confederates kept up a deadly fire, hoping to take out the ast Union unit they needed for victory.

A Union counter-attack failed to break the Confederates on their left.

But back on the Union right, the continuing skirmish in the woods there saw the last Confederate unit on the flank break, giving the Union the victory.

The game played quickly with so few units, and there were numerous lost activations owing to neither side having any cavalry and the Confederates losing their artillery early on. Indeed on one turn the Confederates failed to activate anything. The charging rule I used in the last game worked well, and I want to try it with firearm-equipped ACW cavalry sometime, so horses will probably feature in my next game.
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