WS&S

Wargames, Soldiers & Strategy

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Micro Table Battles - Thoughts.

Now the campaign has ended, I thought I would share with you my thoughts and feelings about the whole affair. I think if in future I use the small 19 x 19 inch table, I will certainly restrict the number of units to a maximum of seven or eight per side. More than that, and any type of flanking attack or even maneuvering in general, is next to impossible. That said, I do really enjoy using that small space, I can literally sit in my armchair and everything is within reach.



I really devised the game mechanics on the fly. I used the elan of 'Blucher' the dice and combat of Commands & Colors Napoleonics and just a few ideas of my own. For the most part it worked really well, I was particularly pleased with how the two dice reinforcement system worked, it did keep the forces down to a manageable size for the small area.

Game time wasn't really an issue either, I had decided that each of the ten tables covered an area of about four miles, so the Crooked Valley ended up being approximately forty miles from southern to northern entrance. Very easy to work out the movement rate of twenty miles a day on the road for a column trying to move up or down the valley.



At first I thought the use of the C&C dice might be too brutal, but in actual fact, that also worked out pretty well. Having to throw the correct face, for the enemy you are attacking worked quite well. Each die has one cavalry, one crossed sabres, one flag, one artillery and two infantry symbols. As each unit lost elan, so it also lost a die to roll, which seems logical and produced results I was happy with. It is true a full strength infantry battalion could in all possibility roll six infantry symbols and wipe out an opposing full strength battalion. However, using normal dice, they could just as easily throw that number of fives and sixes for hits.

Things I would change next time. Well the use of the larger table for sure. The small table simply could not cope, and quite frankly, it was unsatisfying to see all the figures crammed so tightly with no room to maneuver properly. The fact that this all took place in a narrow, steep sided valley allowed me to get away with it. Just!





The larger table, which itself is less than four feet x two feet six inches, is still very small by any standards, but with 6mm, it easily accommodated the two brigades, artillery and cavalry for both sides. There was ample space on the flanks, and the terrain could be laid out in a much less cramped fashion.

I am now planning another mini-campaign, larger than this one. The Valley was very linear, the map I am currently working on is a peninsular, it will allow the movement of forces in numerous directions and with a simple orientation of the table, allow for a meeting of forces from any direction.

I would like to thank all of you for taking the time to read this series of blogs, it has received lots of views and likes, for which I am really grateful, I had no idea when I started this that it would generate so much interest. A special thanks also to all of you who commented or made suggestions, be it on the blog page or on any the sites on which I posted the link. It really did spur me on to complete the project and made taking all the photographs and writing the narrative worthwhile.

12 comments:

  1. I like the CCN dice as it has the odds built in. Interesting that you used a linear loss of dice as hits were taken rather than using the CCN tables.

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    1. Thanks Dale, in the C&C Naps they do actually adopt that system. You only throw dice as per the number of blocks remaining in the unit.

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    2. I was referring to the fact that it was not always linear. Some troop types are (figures * 1D) + 1 (British firing, French in melee), plus there is moving fire (1/2 dice), etc. which causes losses to have a non-linear effect on combat power.

      I have all of the expansions and it was interesting to see how Richard Borg used the dice to alter the formula to get a "historical flavor" for the given nationality and troop type.

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    3. Oh right, I see your point now. Yes I could certainly put that in my rules, give the rebels +1 dice in melee to replicate the rebel yell, and +1 to the Union when firing, superior weapons.

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  2. This has been an interesting series of posts, very entertaining too. It’s given me some promising ideas for running a campaign using a small table. Time to dust off my 6mm ACW armies.

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    1. Thanks Kev, I am really pleased that you have enjoyed the the series, and even better that it has given you ideas for your own campaign. Dust of the little guys and give it a go, but share it with us please.

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  3. Thanks for all that. Really enjoyed the campaign and the narrative.

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    1. Cheers Andy, I am pleased you enjoyed it, I get to do my two favourite things, wargaming and writing.

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  4. I've enjoyed flicking through these reports (I haven't had chance to sit an read them all in detail; that's to come).

    You describe you combat mechanism. Were there any command and control rules to restrict unit movement? Indeed what movement rules and ranges did you use please?

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    1. Thank you my friend, the only command and control I used, was the initiative roll, both sides being allowed to move or fire with all their units. A unit that moved, could not fire that turn. Unlimbering arty also took a full turn.
      Ranges were in centimetres, musket and canister being 6cm, effective range for arty was 30cm over that it was long range out to 50cm. Infantry could move 6cm and cavalry 12cm maximum. I hope that helps.

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