Sunday, 2 April 2017

ACW Sharp Practice Campaign part 2

When we left it the Confederates had gained control of Sequatchie and pushed the Union forces back out of the town.
For a couple of turns both sides gathered themselves, the Union marched to area 10 then marched back again in dense fog while the Confederates recalled their cavalry from scouting to form up for battle.  While it didn't slow down the troops movement it did manage to throw off all the explorer and scout rolls, meaning the Confederates lost sight of the Union force.

A sudden realisation of the proximity of the main Confederate force led to Major Trump attempting a ruse de guerre.  He managed to gather enough grey uniforms to outfit 2 units which he despatched under Captain Lambert to attempt a flanking attack by pretending to be the lead elements of the Confederate main force.  Meanwhile the rest of his force, under his leadership, would attack and draw off the defending troops.  That was the plan anyway.

The main force was delayed due to the severe movement penalty caused by an orchard (-1 pip per dice is bad if you keep rolling 1's and 2's).  It took them 3 turns to get through, resulting in dawn arriving before they could get out of the trees.

Sequatchie was under curfew as the Confederates consolidated their hold.  Faint noises were heard by the pickets, but no alarm was raised.  The early dawn light changed that though as the guards saw blue uniforms in the orchard.
 Major Trump heroically led his men from the rear, appearing out of the orchard and realising they had been spotted.  How did he know you may ask?
 Because the Confederates were firing at him, that's how.  The fire was largely ineffective, but it did drop the odd man here and there as well as starting the slow accumulation of shock.
 More Confederate infantry appeared, supported by the single unit of cavalry.  Could the Reb cavaliers make a difference on the day?  Who knows, well I do but I'm not telling.
 More Union troops struggled through the closely packed widely spaced orchard.  It's amazing how many 1's Colin can roll for movement.  In the meantime the front troops opened up with an uncontrollable volley on the Confederates.  Their rifles soon gained the upper hand against the muskets of their opponents, but the exhileration of seeing the enemy falter was too much as they ignored their officers cries and kept firing straight ahead.
 This gave the dreaded grey-clad horsemen the chance they needed and in the galloped.  Sam Colts equalizers blazed away and many blue shirted infantry fell.  As the smoke cleared the result was plain to see.  Several horses and riders were down, but the Union line was smashed asunder.
 The cavalry were driven off, but at what cost?  The Union formation was broken, with two groups routing back in disorder.  The resulting force morale rolls resulted in the Union command falling below a viable point and Major Trump was last seen heading off for a round of golf.
As it all fell apart on the left, the flanking force finally arrived.  "Too late" was the cry as Trump galloped away, muttering about fake news and alternative facts again.

The Union plan was scuppered by three things.  First up was the inability of the troops to move through the orchard.  They came on slower than a slow thing.  Then, once the flanking force was available, it's command counter only came out once in several turns.  Flank attacks don't work if they don't actually get around the flank.  Finally it was the uncontrolled volleys that spelt doom for the Union.  Being unable to react to the appearance of the Confederate cavalry cost Colin with two rolls for groups breaking and one for a formation breaking costing him 5 force morale points.

The final score for the campaign was Major Major went from being an "Upstanding" officer to being a "Plucky" fellow and gained influence with his Corps commander.  Major Trump started as "Outstanding" but is now seen as a "Likely" candidate, although with reduced influence at HQ. The Confederates ended up with 3 dead and 10 wounded out of 54 men, Union had 8 dead and 7 wounded out of 66 men, including the two Sequatchie militia units.

So there it is, a quick campaign resolved in 2 battles which made it simple for me.  Maybe next time I'll get to play one.

Later folks, maybe with a picture or two of things I have painted.

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