Sunday I linked up with Dave and Ken at Dave's house for our annual Christmas MEGAGAME and this year the American War for Independence took center stage as we refought the Battle of Germantown, 1777 using my 15mm miniatures.
|Part of painting from Xavier della Gatta's painting of the Battle of Germantown - taken from the "Bantartlton" Tumblr - used without permission|
While probably not MEGA in the sense of the last few years' worth of battles (see the epic Battle of Aspern-Essling we played last year, the 1973 Arab Israeli War Battle for Tassa Junction in 2018, and the epic 57th Tank Brigade assault at Ponyri in 2017 for an idea of the scope and scale of our Christmas megagames. Those looking for 12' long by 8' wide tables with tens of thousands of figures had best look elsewhere though - we do what we can for full time jobs, families, children and the like! My idea of a megagame, is a game, played to completion, featuring large, historical OOBs, lunch and lots of snacks, that usually lasts the day or into the night.
Those of you following the blog will note an increase of AWI activity this year, coming hot on the heels of finishing the AWI project and getting "all of my figures painted." The last 6 months were very much dedicated to trying out various rules and concepts that would give this crucial battle an appropriate "feel" and give the player-generals participating a historically satisfying experience. I think we did that, and a surprising option - Commands and Colors Tricorne - were the rules chosen to represent this hard-fought AWI action.
Some interesting asides here - I used the outstanding Germantown scenario from the Commands & Colors Tricorne page on the Commands and Colors site with some of the great scenario-specific rules to recreate the confused and chaotic fighting at Germantown. Those rules included no ranged fire beyond 3 hexes due to fog, a very special American "friendly fire" rule which allowed the British once to select and American unit on the left, and fire on an American unit in the center, and the special rules for the Chew House which make it a real tough nut to crack. Also, Greene's large division on the American left cannot move until the British get 5 command cards in their hand (they start with 2).
Both Dave and Ken realized the strength of these rules during game play and the game was filled with dramatic reversals, great surprises, and tense moments for both sides. Let's get into it!
Opening Moves - Sullivan's Attack
|Sullivan's troops bear down on the light pickets and the 40th and drive them back|
|The lights lose a "block" (casualty marker) and fall back towards Germantown|
Dave maneuvers cautiously - perhaps more cautiously than Sullivan because he's played the game before! Ken gives ground and the lights conduct a fighting withdrawal back towards Germantown.
|Cornwallis moves 2 units up towards the right side of the Chew House - he knows it's worth 1 temporary victory banner for whoever occupies it!|
|Lead elements of Sullivan's unit trading fire with the British in the house!|
|Note the British left wing - alot of combat power!|
|Sullivan's men staring down the Chew House|
The American Line Advances!
|The British left flank with General Knyphausen off camera and General Grey in the background|
|The American line pushes further towards the British left.|
|While they may ignore flags from small arms, they may not ignore from artillery! The 40th is sent packing for a turn but quickly re-occupies the mansion.|
|Cornwallis garrisoning Germantown with line troopers|
|Dave starts making Ken's life miserable in the Chew House with Knox's guns! Dave pulls some of the line back and allows the artillery to attempt to work over teh British in the house.|
|Cornwallis is dead - Killed by a cannonball (yikes) during the Battle of Germantown|
|General "Earl" Grey moves up to take the place of Cornwallis holding the battered line around teh Chew House together!|
|Ken moves up his line on the left while the American line slowly bears down. Ken is starting to realize he needs to silence the Artillery. He begins firing at it with everything he has!|
|Dave moves Greene's Division of regulars and provincials and starts to move towards teh Frankford Creek crossings|
|The artillery on the right starts bombarding the Hessians on the British left with some successes.|
|View from Greene's spyglass as his troops step off.|
|The Jaegers realize the American right-artillery are in range and send them packing with accurate, long-range rifle fire! Armstrong's artillery retreat!|
|Ken's British Grenadiers arrive from a Call Forward Reserves card|
|meanwhile Dave forms a massive line with practically everyone! Note the guns have 2 x hits already. Ken's long range firing is having a gradual effect on them.|
|Counting up dice additions!|
|Grenadier assault along with more British line!|
|Hessian Grenadiers are on the scene now! Sullivan's lead regiments are trapped and they'll need to fight their way out!|
|British Grenadiers gobbling up every unit in sight!|
|The real winner of Sunday's game? The mincemeat pies and Christmas cookies!|
|Dave's Christmas present to me - beautiful although admittedly I do NOT want to paint on it! :) Thank you sir - yours is enroute!|