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Subject: ACW game recommendation rss

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Keith Anderson
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What would you recommend for an American Civil War game where
1. playable under 2 hours
2. one set of rules to cover most ACW battles
3. board game (or miniatures where counters can easily be used)
4. good feel for period but not too rules heavy

Suggestions?
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Leo Zappa
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Battle Cry: 150th Civil War Anniversary Edition

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Eric Brosius
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A House Divided

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Brian Morris
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desertfox2004 wrote:


This is my suggestion as well.
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Brad Miller
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A House Divided is an excellent, simple, strategic game of the ACW. It is unlikely you will finish in under two hours.

Battle Cry FTW!
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Robert Fox
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It sounds like you are looking for tactical games.

It's only one battle, but Avalon Hill's Gettysburg (125th Anniversary edition) is a pretty good game if using the optional rules from the General that make the game more historical.

Across 5 Aprils has a few battles and is pretty easy to learn with short playing times.

Battle Cry is OK. It has a lot of battles, but is more game than simulation.

Iron and Oak is for the naval engagements of the war. Not much of a simulation, but it's fun if you like rolling dice and it does have a lot of scenarios from small ship-on-ship encounters to larger actions.

If you'd like an operational game, go with any of the Great Campaigns of the American Civil War. Great operational games, with plenty of scenarios that can be done in under 2 hours. Even the huge scenarios aren't particularly bad.

For strategic level you could try any of these, but none will be done in less than two hours.

A House Divided is probably the best strategic Civil War game that balances history with playability.

For the People is good, with the yearly scenarios only taking a few hours (1862 or 1863 being the best). The naval rules are a bit involved.

I find Rebel Raiders on the High Seas to be quite fun, although I suspect I'm in the minority on this. It's more game than simulation, but there is plenty of flavor so you do get a feel for the history (much more so than a game like Battle Cry). The game turns go quickly, so while you'll probably be playing for 3-5 hours, it often doesn't feel like it. It's also a unique take focusing more on the naval blockade and fight for the Mississippi river. I didn't enjoy the game at first, but it's really grown on me.
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Paul Spak
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GamePlayer wrote:

...
1. playable under 2 hours
2. one set of rules to cover most ACW battles
3. board game...
4. good feel for period but not too rules heavy


Blue & Gray

The game system has it's limitations, but it seems to hit all 4 of your req's.
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Keith Anderson
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As for Battle Cry, C&C Ancients is one of my favorites so this would seem to be the perfect fit...to the point where I have owned it...twice (not now). It just comes up a bit short in depth and as a simulation (the game I'm seeking does not have to be simulation to the nth degree but a bit more). I've often wished that Battle Cry had been one of the later games in the C&C series instead of the first since they added depth as they went.

As for scope, yes tactical on individual battles is what I am seeking.

Now, while they are at a larger scale, I should probably also take a fresh look at the Great Campaigns of the ACW series. I owned one once but never played. Frankly, I was overwhelmed by the number of counters. Still, it took a long time to decide to sell since the map was absolutely beautiful and had so many locations with accompanying descriptions in the rule book describing them that it just dragged you into the era. Did I mention I'm a sucker for maps? Within this series, which would you suggest for shorter scenarios with lower counter count?

Thanks for the suggestions. They are definitely in the right ballpark. I've got to do some reading on some of them. Other ideas?
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Daniel Rodriguez
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If you are familiar with Ancients Battle Cry will fit well, you can adapt the more advanced rules to Battle Cry with ease.

GamePlayer wrote:
As for Battle Cry, C&C Ancients is one of my favorites so this would seem to be the perfect fit...to the point where I have owned it...twice (not now). It just comes up a bit short in depth and as a simulation (the game I'm seeking does not have to be simulation to the nth degree but a bit more). I've often wished that Battle Cry had been one of the later games in the C&C series instead of the first since they added depth as they went.

As for scope, yes tactical on individual battles is what I am seeking.

Now, while they are at a larger scale, I should probably also take a fresh look at the Great Campaigns of the ACW series. I owned one once but never played. Frankly, I was overwhelmed by the number of counters. Still, it took a long time to decide to sell since the map was absolutely beautiful and had so many locations with an accompanying book describing them that it just dragged you into the era. Did I mention I'm a sucker for maps? Within this series, which would you suggest for shorter scenarios with lower counter count?

Thanks for the suggestions. They are definitely in the right ballpark. I've got to do some reading on some of them. Other ideas?
 
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Keith Anderson
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danrodz wrote:
If you are familiar with Ancients Battle Cry will fit well, you can adapt the more advanced rules to Battle Cry with ease.



Ah, there you go dragging me back toward Battle Cry and there is one sitting on the shelf at one of the local stores...
 
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Judd Vance
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I think Battle Cry is your only choice. Most of the other recommendations don't cover battles, but rather the entire war.

Some others don't meet your rules/time requirement, or only cover a single battle.

Battle Cry is it. Look no further.
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Keith Anderson
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airjudden wrote:
I think Battle Cry is your only choice. Most of the other recommendations don't cover battles, but rather the entire war.

Some others don't meet your rules/time requirement, or only cover a single battle.

Battle Cry is it. Look no further.


I knew the many battles requirement was very limiting. Perhaps even more than I knew.
 
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Daniel Rodriguez
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I happen to really like the game and the system, i have a few of Borg's system games. Another point to consider is Battle Cry 150th edition has 30 scenarios in the box and there is a website that has more...plus there are epic style battle scenarios.

GamePlayer wrote:
airjudden wrote:
I think Battle Cry is your only choice. Most of the other recommendations don't cover battles, but rather the entire war.

Some others don't meet your rules/time requirement, or only cover a single battle.

Battle Cry is it. Look no further.


I knew the many battles requirement was very limiting. Perhaps even more than I knew.
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Greg S
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Don't forget the Glory family of games. Not too rules heavy, and a nice selection of battles covered so far.

If you really want to delve into the ACW, then I highly recommend either Great Battles of the American Civil War series or Line of Battle Series (only two games so far, but more on the way I'm sure).
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Jason Cawley
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Candyland.

Seriously, with that set of requirements, actual wargames are out the window...
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Jason Cawley
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The Glory series are great games. They don't play in under 2 hours. Not even close.
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Keith Anderson
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JasonC wrote:
Candyland.

Seriously, with that set of requirements, actual wargames are out the window...


The multiple battles is the biggest catch but I'm receiving suggestions that are hardly Candyland. I asked for 2 hours knowing that I could stretch to 2-3 on occasion. 6 hours = unplayed.
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Kent Reuber
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Yankees & Rebels is a division-level ACW game. The base game includes Gettysburg. Scenarios for Champion Hill, Shiloh, Antietam, and Chickamauga are available for free download.
 
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Allen Dickerson
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You lost me at 2 hours.

How come nobody has an **attention span** anymore?

Most wargames are not your typical Milton Bradley affair for ages 8 and up. They require study, time to learn the rules (even longer to *master*), time to set up and enough time to play. I'd say any game **worth playing** has a minimum time range in the 4-6 area.

If you're looking for something, too, that's *evocative* or has a period feel, that's usually accomplished with more detailed rules, which usually add to play time.

You can find games that short, sure, but they're likely not very good games, nor evocative of anything.
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John Dent
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Shiloh: Bloody April, 1862and Bobby Lee are good block games from Columbia Games
 
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Keith Anderson
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Stiglr wrote:
You lost me at 2 hours.

How come nobody has an **attention span** anymore?

Most wargames are not your typical Milton Bradley affair for ages 8 and up. They require study, time to learn the rules (even longer to *master*), time to set up and enough time to play. I'd say any game **worth playing** has a minimum time range in the 4-6 area.

If you're looking for something, too, that's *evocative* or has a period feel, that's usually accomplished with more detailed rules, which usually add to play time.

You can find games that short, sure, but they're likely not very good games, nor evocative of anything.


You assume I have no attention span? Interesting.

Counter example to your games theory: Bonaparte at Marengo
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Øivind Karlsrud
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GamePlayer wrote:
What would you recommend for an American Civil War game where
1. playable under 2 hours
2. one set of rules to cover most ACW battles
3. board game (or miniatures where counters can easily be used)
4. good feel for period but not too rules heavy

Suggestions?


I agree with the others that Battle cry is your only option, but I can't really say it gives you a good feel for the period. Infantry range is way too long, and infantry is way too deadly compared to artillery. Cavalry too, which really didn't have much place at a civil war battlefield once the fighting had really started. It is really just a generic system which happens to use ACW miniatures. It could fit the Napoleonic Wars just as well (probably better, actually). It has been used for WWII (Memoir 44).
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Keith Anderson
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oivind22 wrote:
GamePlayer wrote:
What would you recommend for an American Civil War game where
1. playable under 2 hours
2. one set of rules to cover most ACW battles
3. board game (or miniatures where counters can easily be used)
4. good feel for period but not too rules heavy

Suggestions?


I agree with the others that Battle cry is your only option, but I can't really say it gives you a good feel for the period. Infantry range is way too long, and infantry is way too deadly compared to artillery. Cavalry too, which really didn't have much place at a civil war battlefield once the fighting had really started. It is really just a generic system which happens to use ACW miniatures. It could fit the Napoleonic Wars just as well (probably better, actually). It has been used for WWII (Memoir 44).


Thanks, I'm considering narrowing to a particular battle. Or I might change scale such as to operational (GCACW game with suitable scenarios).


Would 3 hours make a difference?

Finding opponents for a longer game than that where their time block coincides with mine is just too difficult to succeed very often.
 
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I would recommend Bobby Lee 3rd edition. Its more rule heavy and it covers most of the eastern theater (being more of a grand strategy game) but its awesome. You can play yearly scenarios which officially take around 60-90 minutes to play (it took us much longer the first time). This game has a lot of depth to it and the 3rd edition comes with much more streamlined rules. I am so exited about this game. And the rules aren't that difficult to grasp.

 
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You could try picking up the old Blue & Gray Quads from SPI. 4 games in 1.

Blue & Gray

Blue & Gray II
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