My Bay State friend Mark K. came down to visit for a nice full day of gaming -- our second in a monTH!
It's a long drive, so we try to make it worth his while by getting in a bunch of games.
We started off with a match of Hold the Line, one of our staples. We've played a couple dozen scenarios now. This time it was the Battle of Harlem Heights from 1776, which is one of the lesser-known battles of the war -- remarkably so, considering that it was one of the rare American victories.
|Game Two of HOTL|
Mark and I tired very different approaches as the British, but neither worked. I tired to be aggressive with the high quality light and elite troops to pick off some American militia while trying to bring up some of the supports from the British main body. This didn't work out at all well and the Americans were able to destory most of the British front line and take two fo the 3 VP hexes for the win.
When it was Mark's turn as the British he tried to fade back, but that didn't work either as the Americans were able to advance in strength and overwhelm the British by the fences.
One bright spot was that this broke my losing streak against Mark. Last time we played a few weeks ago I was 0-7 on the games we played that day.
We then played the Battle of 300 Champions scenario from the Commands & Colors" Ancients expansion The Spartan Army.
One aspect of the Borg game system (Memoir '44, Commands & Colors, Battle Cry, etc) I really like is the evocative color. It's not high simulation, but it really makes the history come alive. In the case of the Battle of the 300 Champions, it's mostly a legendary affair, which little relaibly known from this 6th Centruy BC battle between the Argives and the Spartans. The game starts with a special "Battle of 300 Champions" roll-off between eight Medium Hoplite blocks on each side, with the survivors beefoing up their respective armies and winning the initiative.
|End of Game 1|
Both battles saw me win the early advantage with the Battle of Champions but unable to turn that into a win. As so often happens in Commands & Colors the fickle fortunes of war can turn in an instants and the second game, especially, saw a very promising start for the Argives fall apart at the end.
The nice thing about both Hokld the Line and CC:A is that the play rather quickly and we got in all four battles in a little over two hours. The next two games took somewhat longer.
|Near the end|
We ended with a real classic -- Avalon Hill's Midway, which was my first ever wargame back in 1969. It holds up well. Mark had played it back in the day, but said he hadn't tried it in a couple of decades. While I haven't played it anywhere near as much as I'd like,. I have played it within the last few years and my greater experience showed.
|The big raid on the US Fleet|
The rest of the game was somewhat anticlimactic from that point on, as the surviving US airpower wasn't enough to threaten Japanese fleets and he had to content himself with picking off isolated cruisers.
Follow up strikes by the Japanese sank some more US cruisers and started softening up Midway. With little choice the US Fleet make a suicide run at the Invasion force at Midway which comprised the Atago, two other cruisers and the four Kongo-class battleships. After a valiant effort the last of the US ships went down, taking down two Japanese cruisers and almost the Kongo -- it has one hit box left.