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Diary of a Wargames Butterfly

The ramblings of wargamer living on the edge

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August 20, 2017

War of 1812 – demo game


Yesterday I ran the first in what will be several demo games of Sharp Practice 2 for members of my club and I had 4 willing players who wanted to try out the rules. This also allowed me to start working on a scenario for the Too Fat Lardies event ‘OML4’ which is happening in Evesham in June and also try out the rules I’m working on for the War of 1812 supplement I’m working on. So win-win I say

For this first run out of the game I went for a simple scenario, similar to one we played at Lard island last month with a British attack on a small American force, the table looked like this with the edge nearest being the British entry point. The area on the left hand side was marshy ground which would slow down any formations moving through it whilst the rest of the British deployment area was wooded, so the regular British troops would be forced to advance up the road before they could form any kind of line in the center

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the Americans had a single deployment point in the fort itself and had the following forces

  • 4 x 8 man regular infantry groups with a level 2 leader and a level 1 NCO
  • 2 x 6 man Riflemen groups with a level 2 leader
  • 2 x 10 Militia groups each with a level 1 leader

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on the British side we had

  • 3 x 8 man regular infantry with a level 3 leader and a level 1 NCO
  • 2 x 10 man militia with a level 2 leader
  • 1 x 6 man scout unit with a level 1 leader
  • 1 x 12 man Indian unit with a level 1 leader

the British also had a moveable deployment point for the Indians to use

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I decided that firing steps had not been built into the palisade wall yet so defenders couldn’t fire from inside the fort so the Americans would have to come out and use the open ground in-front of the fort to blunt the British attack

the game started with a run of British cards and they were able to deploy the Indian troops, the scouts and the Militia on the table before the Americans could react, and then they only managed to activate the rifle units which were deployed in the watchtower and outside the fort around the barn.

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eventually the Americans got some cards together and deployed their 2 units of Militia in the open ground which worried the Indians who were sneaking up through the woods and a quick firefight started off which showed just how bad the Indians fire was

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the British player knew he was going to have to take a chance and engage the militia hand to hand, but he held off until he had a good run of command cards

Before that happened the regular infantry on both sides marched on from opposite table edges with both of them heading for the same piece of land, both players knew that whoever held the center would have an advantage

it was at this point that I forgot to take pictures, but this is what happened

the British player had a good run of cards and had enough to play the war cry ability which added some shock to the American militia, they then activated and charged out and hit the militia with their tomahawks before some brutal fisticuffs which left the militia unit broken, their leader wounded and they were off heading for home.

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At this point the turn ended and in the next one the Indians got another early activation and charged into the second militia unit and after 2 rounds of combat managed to push them back with enough shock to break them as well.

predictably for the Americans the turn ended at that point and the first card of the new turn was the Tiffin card which ended the chapter and caused the 2 broken militia units to rout from the table and knocked the Americans force morale down to 2

the Americans did manage to get their infantry into line and fired a huge controlled volley at the British forces, which forced back the Indians and slowed down the British troops moving into position but we all knew the game was over and we called it with the force Morale for the British at 8 and at 2 for the Americans.

all in all it was a great game and the players are all very interested in getting their hands on the rules now and were talking about playing ACW games in the near future. For myself I’ve had to look at the Indians again as this is the second time I’ve seen them dominate a game, they are fragile in prolonged attacks but that first attack they make can be lethal if backed up with some command cards (not sure if this is a bad thing though) I’ve also finally got the scenario for OML4 sorted out in my head and will be playing an adapted version of this game next week to see how the changes work out

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2 Responses “War of 1812 – demo game”

  1. Redbad
    July 2, 2016 at 9:44 pm

    It’s great to see War of 1812 battles using Sharp Practice 2, Mike.
    I have made some suggestions on the Sharp Practice Forum, most notably regarding First Nations Warriors. From the description of your battle journal they seem to function like Jacobite Highlanders with all that charging about. The historical accounts of the vast majority of battles indicate that they were, out of sheer necessity, skirmishers. Even at the Battle of the Thames, Tecumseh’s last stand, the warriors were charged themselves – they did not do the charging. Anyways, it seems to have been an exciting battle!

    • MikeH
      MikeH
      July 2, 2016 at 10:05 pm

      Since playing this game I’ve added in a second First nation unit which are skirmishers, so now players can either take a large unit of 12 or 6 man skirmish units

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