On Kriegsspiel http://kriegsspiel.forumotion.net/ we are testing a extended multiplayer scenario; the concept is similar to a simplified online campaign but on grand tactical level. Every multiplayer session represent a phase of same battle, with losses and locations moved from a phase to another one (using the game functionalities). Players will have objectives minor and major and the events of a session determine what will happen in the second one and so on; of course the lenght of battle will be determined by what will happen in the previous sessions.
We started the first extended scenario last week on the basis of this what-if background:
Jackson didn't die at Chancellorsville and Hooker losses were extremely heavy and, also if managed to retreat, half of 70.000 men of Hooker troops are death,wounded or missing with a good part of them are the stragglers still to reorganize, fit to return in service only after many weeks; the numerical superiority of Army fo Potomac is temporarily lost and Lee wants take advantage from this. After the return of Longstreet troops, with a turning movement north of Rappahannock, he forced the 75000 men of now reduced Army of Potomac to abandon Frederickburg and march north. Now Lee doesn't want simply invade the North, now he has the possibility to destroy the entire army of Potomac on the battlefield and doesn't want to leave the prey free to run away. Hooker retreates again behind the Potomac West of Washington. President Lincoln is already in crysis because of heavy losses received at Chancellorsville and doesn't want risk a siege of capital, nor Lee wants lost time for a difficult siege of almost invulnerable city fortifications.
At the end of May Lee cross the Potomac, north fo Hooker position, but now Meade is the new commander of Army. Meade try to form a new fortified line south of Frederik, Maryland for cover the Baltimore-Ohio raildroad but, again,Lee bypass him from south marching towards Baltimore, forcing him back again for avoid the fall of city. Meade knows that Lee cannot attack the city with a army behind him at few distance, but Lee wants Meade Army not the city. A short clash happens at Westminster, Maryland on the Pipe Creek hills, but Meade managed to leave the battlefield with the army intact moving north to Hanover, in Pennsylvania; a new fortified line has been prepared by the local militia here, extending to NW. On this line Meade wants resist to Lee. A western army corps from the Tennessee is coming and it will change the force balance again, but Meade has to protect his lines of communication with the west, a new retreat will mean the fall of all the Pennsylvania and the possible destruction of western reinforcements. Lee needs to destroy him before this and the time of grand operational movements is terminated: he has to fight in this area and has few days for organize the attack.
We played in 10 and this is the strategical replay of battle:
The debriefing of first phase "The long march home"
The engagement at Gettysburg became a full scale battle and the confederates received a hard tactical defeat, but the night comes to separate the troops and the stop the fighting. Longstreet Corps has been forced to a desparate defence but now the Northern troops of VI Corps in their hurry to press ahead resulted cutted from their line of communication with rest of army and still the flank at west is not fully secured against the enemy cavalry; they ended in a "cul de sac" where they are sufficiently strong to move but only in a direction. During the night the commanders took their decisions about what do the day after. The biggest Corps of Army fo Potomac is for the moment isolated from the rest of army also if only by light screen of enemy troops but also few hours could permit to Jackson Corps to make a flank attack on the right wing of army at Hanover; at the same time the confederate retreat line at South is in danger and if lost the confederate could retreat only to east to Hanover but this only if they can hold a sufficient number of hours for permit Jackson to advance. In the meantime the western reinforcements are advancing.
On Kriegs forum you find the comment of players.
Now we are organizing the next session, "The Bloody Sunrise", for the next WE
"after a long night with the screams of woundeds in the ears, the confederates commander decided to fight again for the battlefield at Gettysburg. He took heavy losses but reached some strategical objectives, so he doesn't consider himself defeated; at the same time the Federal commander inflicted a crushing lesson to his adversary, but now he found himself with the communications to the rest of army of Potomac cutted; the darkness covered the movements of troops, under a screen of pickets. In the meantime both Jackson and federal western troops are in march; what will happen at the sunrise?"
The game is open to everyone wants try a HITS games (in scenario there are many little commands for newbie), is sufficient to go on kriegs forum for the necessary instructions about the mods to install and how to set the game options.
After you can post your presence to this doodle: http://doodle.com/89t7zfbg78checfc