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User Rating Comment Status
Charles Vasey
Scotland
Mortlake, London
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10
Jun 2010
Very clever double-blind game. Ben Knight's design skill and Ty Bomba's clean lines place you in the Gettysburg campaign trying to fix the enemy, always one march behind in a game where command of cavalry is a matter of scouting not charging.
2010-06-03
Owned
M Stumptner
Australia
Unspecified
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8
May 2006*
Very smooth double blind system makes for a lot of fear, uncertainty and doubt. Fun to play. Ben Knight was one of the best designers of the time.

Marred by Beth Queman's first map for Command - I couldn't believe my eyes at the time. Like something done for a high school geography lesson.
2006-05-11*
Owned
Pete Gelman
United States
Portland
Oregon
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Mysterious Matters of Max Metters / Moonifest Destiny
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Island of the Moths
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8
Jul 2009*
1 play (about 20 turns) - enjoying the fog of war, quick turns, easy flow. Tough decisions, risk-taking. I think the double-blind system works well here, very playable and nerve-wracking in a good way. The double-blind system really helps smoothly emphasize the historic role of cavalry as both scouts and screens -- a wonderful thing to see in an ACW game! Seems designed to be won by a thousand cuts, not decisive battles (maybe). I tried to take Alexandria, almost succeeded. I think now we can finish the full game in 3 hrs. --I will almost surely raise my rating, but I want to play it more first.

Update - months later, after reading some Civil War books - this game's playable fog of war and cavalry roles (scouts & screening) seems delicious to me. I didn't realize how much strategic deception both sides historically employed (not just the Rebs). I think that aspect of the struggle is impressive and exciting history. I don't think Blocks or upside down counters quite offer the same 1863 sense of "Hey, where is the enemy, and what are they doing?" or "I'll leave some guys here to make a lot of noise while taking the rest of my army around this sneaky way."

The following is an attempt at grasping some ideas, submitted with humility: Let's say you can break down an ACW operational / strategic game to Terrain, Troops, Combat, Logistics, Supply, and Fog of War. Terrain and Troops (the ORBAT) are arguably easiest for a game to portray. Combat systems have evolved a lot over wargaming history and vary widely, I'm putting that aside. Wargames in general, including ACW games, handle gameable supply logistics quite well in my opinion. One much-discussed general issue with any ACW game's Command rules is gaming the historic personalities. But what about gaming how the ACW Command fits into fog of war? Other civil war games make strong efforts at evoking the famous command personality problems of the ACW, one way or another, even the communication problems with subordinate commanders, but Command Fog seems tricky in game playability... how to force turn by turn manifestations of doubt, hesitation, mistakes, rashness, duplicity when the players have relatively omniscient info? And how do you do it in a way that is playable and feels valid and satisfying to the players who are ghosting the historic commanders? This game, AtP, merely abstracts Lee/Hooker-Meade command ability with basic significant impact, but lets you determine the leadership personality adjectives as you the player try to meet the challenge of historically similar Fog of war. The doubt, hesitation, rashness, duplicity etc. comes right from you. Your knees may be knocking under the table.

"Always mystify, mislead and surprise your enemy. And when you strike and overcome him, never let up in the pursuit. Never fight against heavy odds if you can hurl your force against part of your enemy, and crush it. A small army may thus destroy a large one, and repeated victory will make it invincible."
--General "Stonewall" Jackson

The double blind system may be a challenge to eurogamer taste, since I'm not aware of anything like it in eurogame land; it's not puzzle-solving, not mini-maxing, not calculating among known knowns, not risk taking on a single unknown among many knowns, it's existential warfare brought down to Virginia by hexgrid law, in which you shift dangerously along by hunches, guesswork, imagination, trickery, and lots of brute force.

If only the artwork were more inspired! At least it has the merit of clarity.

http://grognard.com/reviews/potomac.txt
http://grognard.com/reviews/potomac1.txt
http://grognard.com/xtr/reviews/atp.txt

errata
http://grognard.com/xtr/errata/err-cd30.txt
designer's errata
http://grognard.com/errata/across.txt

errata counters
http://www.thewargamer.com/Scans/Budapest45_XTR.jpg

and...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sMHyovwX7JM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YdVhIbiIBC0
2009-08-24
Owned
Want To Play
Nuno Gonzalez
Portugal
Estoril
PORTUGAL
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8
Mar 2008*
Despite the gaps in the rules, this is a very fun game. The armies of union and confederation playing the mouse and the cat.
2013-07-22
Owned
Francois-Xavier Euzet
France
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8
Jun 2011
good double blind game, funny, easy and fast. There are only a few things that misses (supply,...) but the game does not suffer from it.
a good game to have.
2010-10-09
Owned
Mark Johnson
United States
Santa Clarita
California
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That's a Palm Pilot on the left, and a pink iPod mini on the right. Yes, I've been doing BGTG that long!
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http://www.WargamesToGo.com
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8
Dec 2013
Only played solo, and this REALLY wants to be double-blind ftf. Normally that sounds horrible, but this game is smartly designed to be almost minimalist in its basic combat & movement mechanics. That lets the player focus his attention on the scouting, army positioning, and impacting the reinforcement schedule.
2013-12-09
Owned
L. SCHMITT
France
Alsace
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7.5
Aug 2011
Good game, using a simple and efficient double blind system.
2011-08-11
Owned
Leong Yew Lam
Malaysia
Seri Kembangan
Selangor
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7
Oct 2002*
Unusual treatment for the Gettysburg Campaign
2002-10-09*
Owned
Jens Hoppe
Denmark
Frederiksberg
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What are you, like 80?
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It's not the years, honey, it's the mileage.
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7
Mar 2005*
Interesting, innovative (double-blind!) game about the Gettysburg campaign.
2005-03-11*
Owned
Lawrence Hung
Hong Kong
Wan Chai
Hong Kong
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7
May 2005*
Quite an interesting design to the wargamers who are obsessed with XTR'e enigma. This is the "first" double blind game I have ever seen on American Civil War. Granted that this is no small feast from Ben Knight, following his streamlined "Midway". This game is rather an eloquent game to play and tinker with.
2005-05-15*
Owned
Mike Riley
United States
Minneapolis
Minnesota
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7
May 2009*
Could use a few little house rules, but plays well as a double-blind game. A little long for one sitting. But fun to play.
2007-05-03*
Owned
For Trade
Noel Wright
United States
El Dorado
Arkansas
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7
Oct 2012
Solo, pbm.
2007-08-17*
Owned
David Banks
United States
Washington
Dist of Columbia
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7
May 2010
I love history games that give you an insight into how commanders had to think. This game is fun because the two completely separate boards (one for each player) mean that without cavalry you really are blind in the other side's territory, and that campaigns take weeks not days, so plan ahead. I think you have to have a bit of an appreciation of the ACW to really get it though.
2010-05-14
Owned
Steve Bishop
United Kingdom
Lytham St. Annes
Lancashire
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7
Nov 2010
Very Interesting game where each player has their own map hidden from their opponent and is given information on enemy dispositions depending upon where those enemy are and how well you use your cavalry.
Brings out the period feel and the Cavalry screening/scouting mechanism is excellent yet simple.
2012-01-24
Owned
Tony Kerstan
Australia
Hobart
Tasmania
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7
Nov 2013
ACW
2015-04-26
Owned
Chris Harding
Australia
Adelaide
South Australia
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6
Oct 2005*
interesting game, I played it double blind and normally. Worth a look.
2011-03-16
Seth Owen
United States
Norwich
Connecticut
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6
Jan 2009*
Hidden movement
2006-01-16*
Prev. Owned
Sami Nurmela
Finland
Turku
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6
Aug 2009*
Double blind, so cannot be played solo.
2007-09-18*
Prev. Owned
Mike Pratt
United States
London
Kentucky
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6
Jun 2007*
Decent game. The Double blind movement system is something you don't normally see in an American Civil War game
2007-06-06*
Owned
Roberto Chiavini
Italy
Firenze
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6
Jun 2007*
Valiant try with its double blind system.
2007-06-27*
Owned
Takashi Ishida
Japan
Abiko
Chiba Prefecture
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6
Dec 2009*
Good
Double-blind excitement
Good playability

Bad
Poor exciting combat especially at the end
Not well thought victory condition resulting in the race of rading
2009-12-19
Owned
Sim Guy
United States
Albuquerque
New Mexico
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6
Jan 2011
Double blind, obviously difficult to play solo - but I managed. Not terribly complex, owing to only a few units on each side. Seemed like a good system but I never faced off with an opponent.
2011-01-26
Owned
Luis Sacristan
Spain
Alcobendas
Madrid
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6
Sep 2011
2 Campaigns. Turn=1 Day.
2011-09-01
Owned
Ted Flaherty
Italy
Nanto
Veneto
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6
Mar 2015
Civil war paper wargame from Command magazine played with brother a couple times in grad school--interesting two boards/hidden movement mechanic.
2015-05-10
Prev. Owned
Greg Nichols
United States
Ann Arbor
Michigan
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5
Nov 2003*
Played a l o n g time ago. Barely remember that there was a double-blind system. Didn't make much of an impact on me.
2003-11-24*
Doug Adams
Australia
Oakleigh
Victoria
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NASA Dawn approaching Ceres
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5
May 2005*
Very interesting double-blind Gettysburg game that freaks you out! You move your forces through Maryland and into Pennsylvania, but you don't know where the enemy is until you bump into him. Ben Knight is one of the more underrated designers out there.
2005-05-11*
ER Bickford
United States
Auburn
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5
Jul 2008*
Game can be played double-blind. It is fun, but didn't hold my attention. See my replay in Fire & Movement #99.
2006-12-05*
Prev. Owned
Steve Constantelos
United States
Chicago
Illinois
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5
Apr 2014
I'm not sure how replayable this one is, but it provides insights into this most famous of campaigns in a bare bones kind of way with elegance and innovation. Playing double-blind makes it fun.

A bit more chrome and trying this out for other campaigns, possibly at different scales, would be intriguing.
2013-03-31
Donald Lazov
United States
Richmond
Illinois
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4
May 2005*
Unpunched.
2005-05-21*
Owned
William Hay
United States
Dallas
Texas
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4
Aug 2008*
Double blind system is unique. A lot of cavalry chasing
2009-09-17
Owned
Mark Humphries
Philippines
Unspecified
Metro Manila
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3
Nov 2006*
Will sell/trade locally
2011-04-29
Owned
Rick Goudeau
United States
Moody
Alabama
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laissez les bon temps rouler
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3
Mar 2009*
The double blind system was interesting but not enough to carry the game. Guess I preferred the approach used in GBCAW.
Never could get interested in the system - sold it
2007-12-14*
Prev. Owned
Stu Hendrickson
United States
Alexandria
Virginia
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3
Dec 2014
too bad cuz with anything resembling realistic supply rules and other tweaks (i'm looking at you, 'heavy arty fires in defense only') this could be really great. contact me for my 1862 scenario.
2014-12-24
Owned
For Trade
Les Haskell
United States
Tennessee
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N/A
not played
2007-12-29*
Owned
Thomas Heaney
United States
Quincy
California
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Unpunched and unplayed with magazine.
2013-08-03
Owned
For Trade
Don Weed
United States
Clemmons
North Carolina
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N/A
Never played.
2005-02-13*
Owned
Randy C
United States
Chicago
Illinois
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Command 30
2011-09-26
Owned
Jeff Waldon

Charleston
South Carolina
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N/A
-Double-blind game
-Never played
2008-06-19*
Owned
For Trade
Earl Schultz
United States
Exton
Pennsylvania
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N/A
Command Magazine Issue #30

Civil War Campaign from 3 June to 22 July 1863 (ie pre Brandy Station thru Gettysburg and beyoung).
2010-01-09
Owned
Andrew Hung
United States
San Francisco
California
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Command #30, from Ebay, 8/12/06. Slowing filling out what I missed after I had reg for the first 2 years.
2007-01-25*
Owned
arguimbau stephane
France
ales
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N/A
UP
2007-03-20*
Owned
Gary Cope

Goose Creek
South Carolina
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N/A
Game and rules. Magazine negotiable
2007-06-13*
Owned
For Trade
fred young (personnal)
Belgium
bruxelles
Belgium
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N/A
ebay 07/2007 4,5e
2007-08-14*
Owned
Scott Muldoon (silentdibs)
United States
Astoria
New York
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One aborted attempt to play. This may just be a system I don't "get". I understand the rules, but I can't seem to form a synthesis of mechanics and strategy. Will require more thought, and I admit to being intrigued to some degree.
2007-10-08*
Prev. Owned
Bill Kingfisher Jr
United States
Guthrie
Oklahoma
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N/A
Partly punched with variant counters removed.
2011-12-23
Owned
Mark S
United States
Elkins Park
Pennsylvania
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N/A
Unplayed
2008-06-19*
Owned
Doug Bonforte

McLean
Virginia
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N/A
punched ctrs
2008-08-24*
Owned
Paul Schwarzenbart
United States
Reedsburg
Wisconsin
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N/A
XTR collection. Solitaire treatment by an excellent designer.
2008-12-26*
Owned
Andy Pain
United Kingdom
Blandford
Dorset
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N/A
Command 30 - Mint x2
2010-03-18
Owned
Alan Poulter
Scotland
Tranent
Scotland
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N/A
No counters
2012-05-21
Owned

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