Am thoroughly enjoying you AAR and very much like your overall force mix and infrastructure builds. As far as you strategy goes, I suppose that I'm a bit of a heretic in that I'm not convinced that gunning for the AoNV as you're doing (albiet successfully) is the way to go.
Thanks. Doing the DAR is a bit of a risk if he's reading it. I try not to give too much away before he does his turn. I've got the record keeping down now too. I don't end the turn before I have all the information for you guys too....
The last time he and I played I took the Confederacy apart in the summer of 1862. The game ended with a Union victory in October. I did that by taking out the West. I took Nashville, Knoxville and Memphis all in the summer campaign, March-October, in 1862. I had a disastrous amphibious invasion of Texas and Florida. Both were failures. But I learned some valuable lessons along the way.
The most important thing I learned is that there is only one goal.
The goal is not to attack, in Forge of Freedom, but to defend. Since the game makes you the attacker on enemy ground, even if you are sitting there when the other sides forces move in, you are the attacker. That will cost you in this game. So, find a spot where he will have to attack you. Put him on the offensive and at a disadvantage.
Also, we are using instant Quick Combat to resolve our battles. Not detailed combat.
Since I need to be the defender I need inside the crust. The Confederacy is going to defend the outer crust. From a line of Little Rock, Memphis, Nashville, Chattanooga, Knoxville up to Richmond. My theory is that you need a hole in that crust SOMEWHERE...doesn't really matter where. The goal is to gain ground in the Confederacy and take cities. Not to win battles.
I went after the AoNV, in this particular game, because there was a chance that I could surround it and destroy it. Otherwise I wouldn't have come at him like I did.
It has been costly in VP points in lost battles but the gift of Lynchburg made it all worth it. That, and the most important point on this map to date was the Cumberland Gap. It was my way through the crust UNOPPOSED. I've made a lot of divisions. The excess is used for marching. They were only built to take ground. A couple of them only have a single brigade in them with improvised weapons. I don't intend for them to fight. I intend for them to disrupt the heartland of the Confederacy.
I have 6 Armies at present. That's all I'll really ever need. While the Union Army has taken it on the chin in some early fighting so did the original Union Army. If the game makes you sit back and hoard the Army of the Potomac, instead of fighting with it like was done, then playbalance for FoF is off. It should allow for the Union get hammered for 2 solid years and still come back and win the game.
I'm here, this time, to see if the strategy can be done like it was originally. Fight mainly in the East, with the West being a secondary theater. But again, this isn't about the battles you win. It's about winning the war. I could care less about the National Will. It's the victory points I want to see. Those can flip in a single turn. See what the victory point count is when I get a capital and a couple of cities to fall in a turn.
As far as the National Will goes I can use Emancipation anytime I want to raise it. AND if I own several Confederate cities when I do it that reduces what the CSA could gain from my triggering it.
It seems that you have dug yourself a pretty deep hole in VP's and National Will that will be tough to overcome this campaigning season.
I'm not worried about what happens in an single campaigning season. As I've alluded to before, the American Civil War very closely resembles the Eastern Front in WWII. Same time span. Same ebb and flow. Don't worry about how you are doing at the moment but how things are lining up for the next round.
Here's how I see things lining up for the next round:
1)I've got gatling guns in several of my artillery brigades.
2)I'm about to start converting infantry brigades to Springfield rifles.
3)I've got the ability to add 6 or more engineers to a single formation for the destructive power that gives me in sieges.
4)I've got 3 gunboats right now with another being built. The goal again is for 9 gunboats. No fort or city can withstand a bombardment siege from 9 gunboats for more than 2 turns and every time I've done it they fall in one turn. That will be set for the Campaigning season of 1863. I always intended to win the game in 1863. I still do. The game will be won in the heart of the south not on the crust in costly frontal assaults of the CSA's main armies.
5)I've got an amphibious fleet that I can call on at anytime that is large enough to carry an army. I've purposely built my blockade forces up to as close to 6 per port as I can so I can use 3 of those at anytime and still keep the required number at the ports and also have ships for invasions and supply when needed.
I prefer to fight in the West, using my forces around Washington to fix the Confederate main army whilst sitting on the Academy in Annapolis and getting more skilled every turn. Still, to paraphrase the Laws of Combat Operations, 'If it doesn't sound right but it works, then it must be right'. Thanks for the detailed analysis and thought processes behind your decisions.
I prefer not to fight. Or to fight on the defensive. Which is what the south does and beats you bloody when they do it. During the ACW, and FoF, the attacker takes heavy penalties. At least they do in Quick Combat. That's realistic. The army that is forced to do the attacking is taking all the chances. That's why I have 200,000 men sitting at Lynchburg while Fredricksburg sits empty.
The CSA wants to fight? Then come fight where I'm defending with 200,000 men and a city to support me. I own the area now so I don't need Fredricksburg anymore. He can retake that if he wants.
On to Richmond!
That was what cost him the game the last time we played. He thought I needed Richmond and the Mississippi river to win. I don't.
Start adding up the points that I get when he loses state capitals and cities. Then figure in that he starts losing some battles when he tries to take them back. Figure the loss in his production and manufacturing by me taking or no less than spreading unrest through the south. Once the crust is broken the rules change. I'm no longer attacking well defended locations. Now I'm the one defending and doing damage to his infrastructure just by moving through the area.
On to Richmond? As long as Richmond is still in Confederate hands he has to keep a force there to defend it. I can post an Army there and watch him while 5 other armies march through the south.
On to Richmond? Maybe....maybe not...I might just meet you in Atlanta and Pensacola instead...........
< Message edited by Mad Russian -- 8/17/2008 5:54:33 PM >