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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet!

 
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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/13/2006 6:19:55 AM   
Gil R.


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And here's a screenshot showing what those forces will look like.

Finally, before ending the turn I take two brigades that I had mustered down south and put them in Ft. Wright, which is one of those three forts around Memphis. It had previously been empty, but now has a garrison. This will make that province that much harder for the Union to capture. Maybe in the coming turns I'll be able to upgrade that fort too.

And, I make one more expenditure. Thanks to my runners I have a nice stockpile of Iron, not to mention the extra Labor, so I build another Railroad Station. It will take six turns, but since I have another that will be done within the month I'll soon be up to 30 RR points.






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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/13/2006 7:32:51 AM   
Gil R.


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Thirteenth Turn

Aww, crud. Look at this -- the Union sensed the trap and pulled out of Knoxville. I was hoping that fog of war would make my forces look smaller than they are, but perhaps it made them look larger. So no big battle yet (and we all know on whom the blame for that lies!).

I wonder whether the reason for this brief invasion was to lure some of my forces from eastern Virginia. I guess that if Fredericksburg is invaded I'll know. (And with that in mind, I finally buy Breastworks for Ft. Evans, to protect my largest garrison there.)

Anyway, I take that small division in Kentucky and send it to Knoxville and stick it inside the city as part of the garrison. That city will now take at least six turns to successfully besiege, so my rail-lines there are now secured.






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< Message edited by Gil R. -- 11/13/2006 7:37:51 AM >

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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/13/2006 7:37:23 AM   
Gil R.


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On to the Event Report. It seems that nothing much happened at Ft. Henry -- a minor battle was avoided, and that's about it.

Also, for the second turn in a row I impressed in Florida, where the governor likes me even less (though 55 is still pretty positive). But I couldn't resist 40 Money, which I had an 80% chance to get.






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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/13/2006 7:45:27 AM   
Gil R.


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And here's the bottom half.

Diplomacy has paid off again, as I got 15 Iron from the "Other European" power. I decide to increase my investment by putting 10 Money more into diplomacy with that power.

I start this turn with 133 Money and really want that new blockade-runner fleet, so I'm going to avoid spending any more of it (other than the 20 Money I spent on the Breastwork in Fredericksburg), since the sooner I get more runners the sooner I can significantly boost my resource stockpiles. Since right now there seems little chance I'll be in a battle next turn it seems that I should use this breather and not buy expensive weapons and upgrades.

I have 107 horses, which means that I can afford a new Raiders unit (100 Horses) or another Camp (20 Labor, 100 Horses), and I want both. But taking the long view, I realize that I'm starting to reach the capacity for buildings in several key cities and need more Plantations (which support four new buildings each), so I decide to build a Plantation in Milledgeville, George, where that University is giving a +1 bonus for each research institution there. This plantation will be done in late Fall, and over the winter I'll be able to use my resources to build four more institutions there. Come 1863, the upgrades will come much faster because of this.

I'll be able to afford that Camp or Raiders unit next turn.




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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/13/2006 7:48:16 AM   
Gil R.


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One way of getting more Money each turn is to have cities that are set on Labor production give me Money instead. I check each city, and the best place to make this change is Norfolk, where I've been producing 9 Labor but instead can produce 9 Money. In winter one needs a lot of Labor for new buildings, but in the summer Money is more important.

I wish I had thought about doing this a few turns ago...




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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/13/2006 7:52:32 AM   
Gil R.


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Out west I do a little. First, to avoid a surprise attack by that giant Union army, I move my two brigades in Hatchie by rail a bit south to Oxford. Due to fog of war it's possible that the enemy might not even know they're there, which is fine. They are now still in a perfect position to enter the Tennessee-Mississippi River province, but also they are one province closer to Cumberland River and eastern Tennessee, so if needed they can mobilize for battle elsewhere more quickly.

I also buy Minie rifles for two of my garrison units in Ft. Donelson, making it even stronger, and I buy them for one brigade in Ft. Wright in Fredericksburg as well.

I also use some of that extra Iron and Labor to build two more Mints, as a way of getting +4 Money/turn starting four turns from now.




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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/13/2006 7:53:59 AM   
Gil R.


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At the end of my turn, I as usual get a chance to have my Partisans do something, but I don't like my odds of succeeding and/or avoiding destruction, so for the first time I choose "Cancel Raid." Perhaps next turn they'll have a better opportunity presented.








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< Message edited by Gil R. -- 11/13/2006 7:58:33 AM >

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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/13/2006 8:05:26 AM   
AU Tiger


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Dagnabit! I was about to go to bed, and here comes another series of posts!


_____________________________

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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/14/2006 4:59:26 AM   
Gil R.


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Fourteenth Turn

As the top part of the Events Report shows, Ft. Henry finally fell. I just went back and add up the enemy's casualties, and found that 7000 men were lost trying to take a fort that had just two brigades and no special artillery or defensive attributes. Compare that to Fort Donelson, where I have the most powerful artillery available (until my research opens up a whole new world of artillery) and defensive attributes -- not to mention six brigades. I think those western forces that started around 140,000 will be below 100,000 before too long, unless the enemy wisely shies away until he has more siege artillery available.




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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/14/2006 5:04:05 AM   
Gil R.


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Ack. Disease just struck one of the two places I would least want it -- the Tennessee-Mississippi River area, which as you'll soon see is on the verge of being invaded. Luckily my Hospital there prevented the damage from being twice as bad. I regret not having built a second one there when I had a chance. (Which is why in this turn I end up putting a second one in James River, and pray that it will be finished before disease hits the Army of Northern Virginia.)

Also, note that I have an Indian brigade.






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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/14/2006 5:07:13 AM   
Gil R.


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As this screen shows, my giving the Texas governor that Factory he wanted has paid off, since his good Attitude towards me is now giving me points in naval research. Also, Gov. Moore of Alabama is giving my monetary production a boost, which is desperately needed.






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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/14/2006 5:12:16 AM   
Gil R.


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Here's part of the Governors Screen. Since Gov. Moore is giving me Money now, I don't want to risk angering him by going one more turn without giving him that Barracks he wants, so I give it to him. This sucks because I could have used 100 Horses this turn to build another Camp or create a Raiders unit. If only my blockade-runner with a 50% chance at 55 Horses had succeeded last turn, but he didn't.

Barracks, remember, are needed to create a new division or cavalry brigade. I already have plenty of cities with a single Barracks, but when one gets TWO Barracks one can produce a corps, and three lets one produce an army. Those two brigades in Oxford really belong in a corps container, so I can produce on for them in Mobile in a few turns, unless I first produce one back in Richmond. It's actually a pretty good thing to have at least one western city with two Barracks, in case Tennessee is captured and the western theater is partly cut off from Richmond.






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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/14/2006 5:15:22 AM   
Gil R.


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And here's my new Indian brigade, the 122nd. It's a depleted, low-quality unit, and march attrition would wear it away, so I only send it as far as Little Rock, which it will help to garrison.

Once (or twice?) a year one gets Indian brigades that pop up in one of those territories. There is an upgrade ("Indian Training") that causes them to appear as fully seasoned brigades instead of inferior ones.




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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/14/2006 5:18:14 AM   
Gil R.


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And now to my moves. If you look at the screenshot, you'll see that I'm finally over 150 Money. I need to upgrade numerous brigades and forts, but I want that third blockade-runner fleet, which will increase my income significantly starting four turns from now. Every turn I've been leaving lots of goodies untouched, and am missing out on opportunities that might dry up if my diplomatic investments start to falter. So, I build the blockade-runner, passing up a chance to use that money for new artillery, cavalry, etc. etc. etc. But this is a move that will pay for itself.

Plus, if one of my two existing runners should be destroyed I'll be in bad shape, so this is insurance.






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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/14/2006 5:21:11 AM   
Gil R.


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Speaking of diplomacy, here's the Nation Screen as it now stands. Since Gov. Moore is giving me extra money I decided to plow 10 of it into diplomacy with Britain. I'd love to fill those remaining slots and be maxed out in my diplomatic investments, but that would leave me with an income of just 7 Money per turn. That's just not enough to survive, though once that new blockade-runner is done I might put another coin in a slot, figuring that I'll be getting 10 Money at least every other turn from my runners.






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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/14/2006 5:34:33 AM   
Gil R.


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So, now to the game that's afoot out west. Here's how things look to me. Not surprisingly, the Union has divided its forces. (I would have done that some time ago. My western forces are weak, and a force of just 30,000 of those 140,000 or so could have been sent to the Tennessee-Missippi River or Cumberland River just to sit there and prevent me from upgrading those forts and garrisons. The remaining forces besieging Fort Henry would have been more than enough to take it, and could then have caught up with the smaller force. I've been giving a chance to prepare for a long siege, and should not have been given that chance.)

I'm told that the army that just took over Hatchie is 78,000 men, and that's probably correct. I'm also told that the one still at Fort Henry is 50,000, and again that seems realistic.

I'm not positive, but my guess is that the Union is about to try to take those forts and Memphis, since cutting off the CSA from the states west of the Mississippi River is one way of speeding up victory. There is a chance, I realize, that that army will try to attack my two brigades in Oxford, but they're set on "Avoid Battle," so I have a 50% chance of escaping unscathed.

Assuming that the TN-MS River province is the target, I'm just going to lay back and do nothing. Those forts will be VERY costly for the Union to take, so it would be foolish for me to do anything other than let the Union lose a significant number of men. Also, I need to see where that other force winds up. If it attacks Fort Donelson, the enemy will have divided its forces, and I'll be able to attack one force and then the other, and that corps in eastern Tennessee, the one that just saved Knoxville, will help me to get the upper hand.

Also worth mentioning is that now that Hatchie has gone USA blue my river province is no longer in rail supply, BUT rivers act like railroads in terms of providing supplies, so I'm in good shape. Sadly, this works both ways -- if the Union army enters that province it can still be supplied from the northern part of the river. Still, as soon as that army is besieging one of the forts I'm going to try to hop back into Hatchie and turn it red again.







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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/14/2006 5:41:23 AM   
Gil R.


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So, since I assume that the Tennessee-Mississippi River province is about to be the next place to see action, here is a listing of all of my forces garrisoned there. I'm very glad that a turn or two ago I stuck two brigades into Fort Wright. We saw what two brigades in Fort Henry cost the enemy, so this alone will delay the capture of the province by about three turns and cost 5000+ men.

The only thing missing is that I have no generals in any of these forts, and generals give siege bonuses. I haven't gotten enough generals to do that, so I've put most in my armies. (I did have one in Fort Henry, but he's been captured.) In retrospect, I should have put some generals in these forts, even if it came at the expense of my armies. (If I get a chance, I might be able to put one in Fort Donelson, something that occurred to me after I had finished this turn.)





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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/14/2006 5:56:23 AM   
Gil R.


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Since the enemy hasn't made it into the province yet, this is my last chance to upgrade my garrisons there. Unfortunately, I only have 45 Guns, which cannot buy top-quality artillery, and can only be used for Richmond Muskets for one brigade or Minie Rifles for two. It's a no-brainer, though, that artillery is the way to go, so I give Fort Wright, the one with just two brigades, a 42-pounder (see screenshot). This makes the fort tougher than Fort Henry was, and makes this province even harder to take.

It is unfortunate that I didn't give any of these garrisons better weapons (as I did with some of those in Fort Donelson0. In sieges, it doesn't matter what sort of weapons garrison troops carry, since siege results do not factor that in. However, if I were to fight a battle in a province with one or more forts those garrison troops would take part in the battle, and then their weapon types would indeed matter. I have 31,500 troops in Memphis and its forts, so if I were to send in a corps of 40,000 men I would actually be fighting with 71,000 men -- and 31,500 of them would have "Improvised," the least effective weaponry possible in the game. This is highly regrettable, but what Minie Rifles and Richmond Muskets I've been purchasing have been going to the regular army, not garrisons. As soon as I get the chance I really should improve the quality of the weapons some of my key garrisons have.

Before the turn ends I make a few more moves:

1)I send my Partisans into Hatchie and order them to sabotage the railroad, which might keep some Union forces from being able to follow a movement order.

2) I send the 12th Division, my weakest division in Knoxville, by rail into Shenandoah. That province is of crucial importance because the railroad passes through it, and since it has no city or forts all the Union has to do to capture it is to send in a division, and that rail-line into Tennessee will be going through Union territory. Right now, the Union has no spare divisions, but it could easily send one there, so I get there first, and plan to build a small Type I fort as soon as I can. (This will cost 100 Money, 100 Labor and 100 Iron, so it will be a few turns from now. In the meantime, I'm going to hope that fog of war makes that division look much bigger than it really is. Maybe I'll call it the Pufferfish Division.)

3) That infantry brigade I purchased in Atlanta four turns ago is done, so I send it by rail (isn't it great now that I have 20 or so RR points each turn?) to Knoxville and put it in one of those divisions. Purchased brigades enter as "seasoned" (= 5.0 Quality) so this instantly becomes my best brigade in terms of quality, but I can't get it a good weapon until next turn.

4) Since it's one of those times of the year when disease may strike, I build a second hospital in Richmond (as already mentioned) and another in Chattanooga. I would have built a second one in Knoxville, where my corps is, but there is no room for another building there until I first built a Mansion or Plantation. So, next turn I'll move those forces by rail into Chattanooga, getting them one province closer to the potential scenes of action, and also getting them into a province where in two turns they'll be better protected from disease.

5) I build a Signal Tower in Chattanooga, which will help my scouting check before any battles fought there. I never built one in TN-MS River, which was a mistake, but I did build one in Cumberland River. So when I go in there to defend Nashville, I'll have a greater advantage over the invading forces.

And with that, the turn is over.






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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/14/2006 7:50:09 AM   
Gil R.


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Fifteenth Turn

Well, the enemy is evidently smart enough not to go after the Tennessee-Mississippi River province, and that sure sucks. (On the plus side, he is going after Cumberland River, and is concentrating his other western forces there. If he's beginning a siege next turn I'll just wait and jump in with my Tennessee corps when the time is right.

But I get ahead of myself. The reason I mentioned this is that that Union army in Hatchie didn't go west into TN-MS River, but went south into Oxford, where my two brigades were. And even though they were set on "Avoid Battle," which means each had a 50% chance of avoiding battle, that wasn't good enough, and a battle broke out in which they lost nearly 5000 men. (If the two brigades were already in a corps container than there would have been a single coin toss whether or not battle was avoided, but with two brigades each having a 50% chance to avoid battle that actually means a 75% chance of battle.)

But I can also pat myself on the back for being clairvoyant, since the enemy turns out to have tried to send a brigade into Shenandoah the same turn that I did, giving me a victory.

Note at the top that Victory Points is now down to zero. It had been 1 earlier in the game.






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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/14/2006 7:52:48 AM   
Gil R.


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Remember last turn when I decided to build a hospital in Chattanooga so I could move my Knoxville forces there and avoid disease? Too late -- they got hit. I did have a hospital there, so again it could have been worse. At least they're not on the verge of going into battle, so their lowered disposition will improve soon enough.

In the good news department, my School is now done, giving me +1 in each research area.




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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/14/2006 7:54:18 AM   
Gil R.


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Nothing too interesting here. Diplomacy is still paying off moderately, and one of my runners got those 55 Horses.




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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/14/2006 8:06:44 AM   
Gil R.


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So here's how the western theater looks now. Curiouser and curiouser.

Before I do anything, I spend 50 Money (and 10 Labor and 20 Horses, or something close to that) to produce a new corps container in Richmond. The single most important thing I can do for my army is to get those two divisions into a corps container, and add the spare division in Knoxville. The units will have a better chance of winning if they are in a corps than fighting as independent divisions. It will take two turns to complete the container and at least one to have it catch up to the brigades, so this can't wait another turn.

As for the strategic situation, it's unclear if the enemy plans to completely ignore the TN-MS River, but that seems likely, since his force of 80,000 or so isn't enough to take those forts. So if that's not the goal, what is? There are three possibilities: 1) he's trying to pursue and crush my two divisions; 2) he's trying to convert as many soft provinces (i.e., lacking a city and/or fort) into USA territory so as the deprive me of income and cut my supply lines, and therefore will hop from province to province not seeking battle; 3) he's trying to pull a Shermanesque maneuver and march from Tennessee to New Orleans, possibly laying siege to Jackson on the way. Right now, I can't tell which of the three is his goal, so I prepare against each possibility.

First, I know that if he attacks New Orleans he will probably move one or both fleets there so that he can be in sea supply. Since I have my 1st Ship there and don't want it blockaded in, I send it up to Charleston where I have a fleet container. That's not enough naval power to make a dent, but if he send both fleets to supply New Orleans I'll be able to move my ironclad from Norfolk and add it to my fleet, and then I'll pack a bit more of a punch. Still, it won't be much.

(Parenthetically, I should add that if the Union reaches New Orleans within the next three turns it can prevent the completion of my blockade-runner.)






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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/14/2006 8:13:43 AM   
Gil R.


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Since my two defeated brigades were chased into Tuscumbia, I have to weigh my options. I absolutely cannot leave them there, since the enemy might intend to pursue them. But if the enemy is simply going after soft targets (= provinces without a city or fort), then Aberdeen, The Delta or Yazoo would be next, meaning that I can't head into Aberdeen, even though I could then get on the rail-line and move further south, perhaps even to hide in the fog of war. If I move east into Huntsville then I am farther away from the enemy and therefore less able to attack quickly should there be an opportunity. Plus, moving into Huntsville or Tennessee River puts me in range of those forces in Cumberland River.

So, even though it will cost me a bit through march attrition, I head south into Tuscaloosa, figuring that this lets me shadow the enemy's moves if he's heading south, but also is the least likely province for him to move into because it would require moving through two provinces and therefore cause further march attrition, plus it's not the most logical place to look for me. Which is why I go there.






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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/14/2006 8:17:38 AM   
Gil R.


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Since the Union might be intent on New Orleans rather than my two measly divisions, I need to get ready for it. My guess is that it wouldn't be able to resist Jackson, which has a single garrison of 3000 men, and some juicy economic targets. So, since Mobile has a garrison and isn't the least bit threatened right now I take it and send it by rail to Jackson, figuring that I have a good chance for it to get there before the Union. Now, any siege of Jackson will take at least 3-4 turns, during which I can get an impressive force down there.

I then move a spare garrison from Montgomery into Mobile, so that each city will have a garrison and Mobile will not be defenseless.

I also try to muster a brigade in Natchez, as the small blue square shows. If I get that brigade I'll send it somewhere for garrison duty, probably New Orleans.





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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/14/2006 8:23:41 AM   
Gil R.


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With the enemy all in Cumberland River or Mississippi, I don't need all those forces in Knoxville, so I take a pretty good division and send it by rail in the direction of those two in Tuscaloosa. I decide to stop a province short of Tuscumbia, just in case the Union is about to enter it. And this brigade is set on "Avoid Battle," just for good measure.

Once the corps container in Richmond is done I'll send it out this way and those three divisions will all be put into it, under Gen. Sibley (who has been waiting FOREVER to get a corps he could command).

Before ending the turn I do some more building. First, I take 20 Labor and 100 Horses and build another Camp, since I certainly could use more reinforcements. So in two turns I'll start getting 500 more men per turn. I build this and a Railroad Station in Savannah, since it's becoming even more necessary for me to deploy divisions as rapidly as possible. Finally, since the enemy didn't invade the Memphis area I can now build a Signal Tower there, which will help my pre-battle scouting check significantly, if ever there's a battle fought there.






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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/14/2006 8:28:47 AM   
Gil R.


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And at the end of the turn, I get a choice of upgrades, in the nick of time. Clearly, my research investments are paying off. First, I get an engineering upgrade. I really want "Hasty Entrenchment I" because it will give my troops a significant defensive bonus in battle, but it looks certain that there will be a siege in Cumberland River and quite likely that there will be sieges in Jackson and/or New Orleans, so I choose one of the two siege-related upgrades, "Fortification Techniques I." This upgrade helps the troops involved in a siege, while "Siege Techniques I" would keep the fort/city from being degraded as quickly. It's a tough call, but my best way of defending any besieged fort or city is to let the garrisons do maximum damage before I bring in an army, and causing 25% less damage to my garrisoned troops seems a good way of letting them cause more damage.





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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/14/2006 8:31:51 AM   
Gil R.


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And next comes a training upgrade. This is a virtual no-brainer. I currently have no Raiders, and only one artillery unit (plus some brigade artillery, but I'm not sure if this upgrade would affect them). "Bayonet practice I" helps with charging, but fire attacks are far more common, and "Target Practice II" more than anything (well, more than anything but better weapons) helps to even out the disparity in troop strength.





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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/14/2006 6:31:35 PM   
Grotius


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Great fun. One question: what does it mean when a governor "supports" research? I was under the impression that governors had no effect on research...

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RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/15/2006 1:09:18 AM   
Gil R.


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It's one of the positive actions governors can take, just like boosting production of some type of resource or working to cement good diplomatic relations. It is, of course, an abstraction, but a way to think of it would be that they devote some of their state budgets to research, or help make research possible in some other way.

(in reply to Grotius)
Post #: 119
RE: PBEM AAR - It Ain't a Lost Cause Yet! - 11/15/2006 2:31:13 AM   
Gil R.


Posts: 10029
Joined: 4/1/2005
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Sixteenth Turn

As you'll see, I think I made some masterful moves in this game of chess we've been playing, and have put myself in a very good position in both the eastern and western theaters.

First, though, here's the Event Report. I am very, very pleased to see that my plan regarding Fort Donelson is working. The Union took 11469 casualties! My fort was degraded a bit too much (down to 93 percent), but should hold for at least two more rounds. And if the Union doesn't break it off soon, that formerly enormous force will be small enough for me to take on.




Attachment (1)

(in reply to Gil R.)
Post #: 120
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