Monday, October 8, 2012

Battle Cry - First impressions

So I managed to get in one game of Battle Cry over the weekend. My son, with the help of my wife, played the Confederate side while I played the Union for the 1st Bull Run scenario.

This is from the 150th anniversary edition.


Also from

It was an interesting battle in that I jumped out to an early 4 flag to 1 flag lead and then watched as my son tied it up with some hot dice rolling. I should have known from previous experience, when he needs to roll something he gets it.

Basically the battle played out like this. On the Confederate Left/ Union Right is where the early action started The Union cavalry was aggressive and blunted the Confederate attack. On the Confederate Right/ Union Left the infantry tenatively advanced and traded long range musket fire, with neither side gaining much advantage. In the center the Confederates under Jackson took the ridge and poured musket fire onto a line of Union infantry set up in line with Henry House. The union was taking the worst of the musket exchanges until they played the Fieldworks card, and then things evened out a bit. General Beauregard (my son and wife) was reluctant to reposition his artillery once he had gained the dog leg of the ridge, which did not offer a full view of the main Union force.

The union finally won the battle by holding in the center while wiping out opposition on the flanks. So it was fun and the command cards are interesting. I see where some might have a problem with troops effectively sitting the battle out because you couldn't get enough command cards to order them, but I think it is a nice mechanic to give you decisions to make on the field.

The one question that remains for me is battling a general, or more precisely killing a general since they can't really battle. In this game Stuart became isolated on the hill on the left flank and did not move from that position. After killing the unit he commanded I played it that he was killed by rolling the cavalry sybol on the dice. Was that wrong? I'm not sure.

In this 150th Anniversary you get 10 regular scenarios, three from the Jackson campaign and thirteen more for the special edition. But what if your like me and, after seeing all this, wonder why there is no scenario for the first day of Gettysburg you can look here for that and many more.  Also check out wargaming miscellany for Battle Cry musings.

Wanna play solo? Of course you do. Boardgame Geek has suggestions here and here as well as a pdf here (I haven't tried it yet). Bob Cordery also had this to say about using Coomand cards for solo play. Also check out Dale Hurt's blog on solo wargaming about hand management here

I'd write more but gotta run..



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