David Groves
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Hi All

I've soloed my way through all of the scenarios and love this game. Having played each scenario a number of times I found that even the scenarios that on the face of it seem particularly unbalanced could, with a little luck, swing in favour of the underdog giving a close finish.

Compass - I really want the French expansion.

I particularly like the way a line will roll-up and start to disintegrate when hit by a successful flanking attack - just like real life, presenting the potential loser with the challenge of putting in place a quick and dirty defence to stop the rot and then presenting the potential winner with the challenge of keeping the pressure and momentum up to complete the kill.


Military Experts - Having played the game a lot has got me wondering how much of Tricorne's design would be relevant as a back fit into CC Napoleonics.

Were the European armies of 35 to 40 years on more robust not to warrant some sort of morale check after a retreat?

Was it more difficult to roll-up an enemy flank from a flanking attack than it appears to have been in Washington's day?

Were the linear tactics and holding a line together not so important for Wellington than it was for Cornwallis?

I would welcome your thoughts?

Dave

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Mark McG
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well one thing is that Napoleonic battles were far larger. Tricorne battles are several thousand troops. Napoleonic battles are 10s of thousands. So the relative battlefield size is larger, the unit sizes larger

However, it is perfectly possible to roll up flanks in CCN. Support is just as vital in CCN as CCT, and basing your flank in terrain is just as relevant. CCN does tend to be more free flowing, nd I think rout in CCN would be a mistake.
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David Groves
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Thank you, Mark, for coming back so quickly.

Yes, as you say, the scale of the respective battles were most certainly miles apart, which would support Wellington's comment, "that I have no more an idea what is going on across a battlefield than I have of all the happenings at a Ball." (Not verbatim, I might add).

And yes, unsupported units in CcN will fall back and will start to break up the cohesion of a line but Tricorne is the first C&C game I've played where a flag result is never welcome. At times in CCN, Memoir 44 and Battle Cry flags against weak units are very welcome as a way to get them out of the firing line or into more secure terrain but in Tricorne the morale checks are devastating to weak units and it makes the game such a different beast compared to any of the others.

That's why I wondered whether some of the attributes of Tricorne would have been relevant to CCN and possibly even Battle Cry.
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Charlie Heckman
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David Groves wrote:


Compass - I really want the French expansion.



Don't stop there!

Seven Years War...

- Charlie
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David Groves
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Heckmac wrote:
David Groves wrote:


Compass - I really want the French expansion.



Don't stop there!

Seven Years War...

- Charlie


Oh, yes, that would be fantastic.
 
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Robert Ward
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C&C:Musket and Pike would be welcome as well.
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David Groves
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robwarduk wrote:
C&C:Musket and Pike would be welcome as well.


I would welcome that. I'm just reading up on the English Civil war at the moment and fancy something from that era.

I was considering the new Horse and Musket: Dawn of an era but it is about as expensive as Tricorne and the components are not so good. I think there are battles from across Europe and Asia Minor in this game so plenty of scenarios and so quite a lot of different armies. For this reason they use chits and the board is paper (not mounted or even card stock) and so I was put off by the components, to be honest, although I am still considering it. I would buy it if it appeared in the UK and shipping and UK tax were avoided.

The game's author is Sean Chick and I think the mechanics are similar to Hold the Line by Worthington.

https://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/182982/horse-musket-dawn...

Anyway, the link is above should you want to take a look.

All the best
Dave
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Pete Belli
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robwarduk wrote:
C&C:Musket and Pike would be welcome as well.


thumbsup

The system is flexible enough to make it work:



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David Groves
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Very nice minis.

Where did you get them from and what battle are they engaged in?
 
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Pete Belli
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David Groves wrote:
Very nice minis.

Where did you get them from and what battle are they engaged in?


The battle is Lützen 1632: an epic Thirty Years War miniatures scenario for C&C:N and the figures are Revell 30 Years War... but they also work quite well for ECW scenarios.

The superb Commands & Colors system can be adapted to almost any era.
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Charlie Heckman
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pete belli wrote:

The superb Commands & Colors system can be adapted to almost any era.


Pete means it! I played in his Starship Troopers adaptation of Memoir 44 a few years ago at a local convention.

- Charlie
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Stephen Harper
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David Groves wrote:
Thank you, Mark, for coming back so quickly.

Yes, as you say, the scale of the respective battles were most certainly miles apart, which would support Wellington's comment, "that I have no more an idea what is going on across a battlefield than I have of all the happenings at a Ball." (Not verbatim, I might add).

And yes, unsupported units in CcN will fall back and will start to break up the cohesion of a line but Tricorne is the first C&C game I've played where a flag result is never welcome. At times in CCN, Memoir 44 and Battle Cry flags against weak units are very welcome as a way to get them out of the firing line or into more secure terrain but in Tricorne the morale checks are devastating to weak units and it makes the game such a different beast compared to any of the others.

That's why I wondered whether some of the attributes of Tricorne would have been relevant to CCN and possibly even Battle Cry.


My initial gut feel to this question was that the Tricorne morale check system would best not be retrofitted into CCN or Battle Cry. Wanting to understand if my gut feel could be supported, I turned to Brent Nosworthy's book, With Musket, Cannon and Sword, to see if I could substantiate that gut feel. I did find substantiation, IMHO, in chapter 6 of his book, The Origins of the 'Impulse' System of Warfare, wherein he relates how the brittle, 18th century Linear formation was replaced by a system that incorporated Mixed Order of lines and columns (avoiding a single axis of operations as would be found in a Linear formation), Columns of Waiting (allowing better maintenance of reserves), Closed Columns (allowing better combined arms support from cavalry), Closed Squares (allowing infantry to better defend against cavalry), and Divisional Organization. In other words, battlefield tactics had changed substantially enough in 30 years or so to make me think that the relative greater brittleness of the Tricorne morale system vs the CCN/Battle Cry systems be best not retrofitted to the latter.
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David Groves
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Hi Stephen

Very interesting reading. I'd like to get hold of a copy of that book.

I'm very much relieved that you think the mechanics of Tricorne would not be suitable for CCN. For me CCN was an answer to a dream I've harboured for decades; a light but exciting Napoleonic war game. In fact at its present level of play it far exceeds anything I ever wanted and so I'd hate it if the system was lacking in a crucial mechanic that was eventually developed for another game.

I'm now off to Amazon to try to find that book
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David Groves
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Heavens, copies of the book range from £35 - over £100. I'll have to take Stephen's word for it
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Stephen Harper
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David Groves wrote:
Heavens, copies of the book range from £35 - over £100. I'll have to take Stephen's word for it


Most astonishing! They must be OOP. Brent has published 4 books that I know of; The Anatomy of Victory: Battle Tactics 1689-1763 (1990), With Musket, Cannon and Sword: Battle Tactics of Napoleon and His Enemies (1996), The Bloody Crucible of Courage: Fighting Methods and Combat Experience of the Civil War (2003), and Roll Call to Destiny: The Soldier's Eye View of Civil War Battles (2008). His first book cost me $25, and the next two $35 each, with the last coming in at $27.95. Kind of reminds me what happens with our wargames, where if one does not snap up a given game right away, it goes OOP and then commands much higher prices.

Brent's books are quite good. Others that are similar, and of which you may already be aware, are:

Marlborough As Military Commander, by David Chandler
The Art of Warfare In the Age of Marlborough, by David Chandler
Frederick the Great: A Military Life, by Christopher Duffy
The Military Experience In the Age of Reason, 1715 - 1789, by Christopher Duffy
Battle Tactics of the Civil War, by Paddy Griffith
Forward Into Battle: Fighting Tactics From Waterloo To the Near Future, by Paddy Griffith
The Viking Art of War, by Paddy Griffith

All good reads!
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Stephen Harper
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David Groves wrote:


I'm very much relieved that you think the mechanics of Tricorne would not be suitable for CCN. For me CCN was an answer to a dream I've harboured for decades; a light but exciting Napoleonic war game. In fact at its present level of play it far exceeds anything I ever wanted and so I'd hate it if the system was lacking in a crucial mechanic that was eventually developed for another game.




The C&C games are truly remarkable, in that Mr. Borg manages, with a base set of very simple rules, to create games that are very evocative of the eras they portray, with but slight tweaks of the rules for each occasion. C&C Ancients, C&C Napoleonics, The Great War, and now Tricorne are all on my list of top favorite games.
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I do not think Nosworthy's first book on the ACW is particularly useful as a reference on how that war was fought, if for no other reason than he spends a large portion of the book discussion European battlefield tactics oft he 1850s and 1860s . . . not to reference how they impacted the ACW battle mind you, but as a topic themselves. If titled as a genera reference on mid 19th century warfare it might have been more tolerable, but I suspect it would have sold fewer copies.

As to the original question, I doubt very much that the CC: Tricorne rules would be usefully applied to the Napoleonic period. Granted, there is a certain amount of judgement required in evaluating the morale fragility or steadfastness of units of a certain period, but the common assessment is that the pre-Napoleonic armies were less mobile, less maneuverable on the battlefield, more vulnerable to flanking, and suffered fewer casulties before breaking than did the Napoleonic era armies. Napoleon himself was noted for introducing (or at least successfully utilizing) various non-linear tactics and early versions of "battle in depth." So, rule sets emphasizing the fragility of a linear formation would not be applicable to the Napoleonic era, at least from 1805 on.
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David Groves
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Thank you, Stephen. I'll check out some of the books listed. I rather like David Chandler's work.

All the best
Dave
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David Groves
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pavobueno wrote:
David Groves wrote:


I'm very much relieved that you think the mechanics of Tricorne would not be suitable for CCN. For me CCN was an answer to a dream I've harboured for decades; a light but exciting Napoleonic war game. In fact at its present level of play it far exceeds anything I ever wanted and so I'd hate it if the system was lacking in a crucial mechanic that was eventually developed for another game.




The C&C games are truly remarkable, in that Mr. Borg manages, with a base set of very simple rules, to create games that are very evocative of the eras they portray, with but slight tweaks of the rules for each occasion. C&C Ancients, C&C Napoleonics, The Great War, and now Tricorne are all on my list of top favorite games.


Agreed. I was amazed how RB managed to make fighting in the trenches not only exciting for players but also with a feel of how difficult it must have been for commanders sending troops over the top into hails of machine gun bullets and artillery barrages.
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Jon Snow
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laugh A few general comments after reading through this thread:

1. David, what happened when you played the two Battle of Long island (Battle of Brooklyn more properly) scenarios? I've been calling for session reports on them, since I don't have my game yet! I live very close to where they were fought, and right near where Washington retreated from Manhattan afterwards.

2. I play English Civil War with my huge 54mm toy soldier collection. My own rules (not available for distribution, unfortunately) are likewise basic rules I use for many different periods. I wouldn't be at all surprised if Mr. Borg already has an ECW version, and is just waiting for a publisher.

3. Sean Chick is the designer of Hold The Line: Frederick's War.

4. In C&C games I often find myself taking retreats when I get a flag, if it is optional. Depending on the situation, of course. Would one never want to do that in Tricorne?
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Charlie Heckman
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chas59 wrote:

1. David, what happened when you played the two Battle of Long island (Battle of Brooklyn more properly) scenarios? I've been calling for session reports on them, since I don't have my game yet!


I don't have an AAR, but I can say that these scenario's play out nicely. I playtested on both of them and really enjoyed them. IIRC, they also form a teaser for epic scale Tricorne to come? The two scenario's are very close to being matched up side by side to form an epic scale battle.

chas59 wrote:
4. In C&C games I often find myself taking retreats when I get a flag, if it is optional. Depending on the situation, of course. Would one never want to do that in Tricorne?


Never is a long time, but it is a rare day indeed that you choose to take an 'optional' flag in Tricorne. I think the first game or two, you might do it, but once you get a number of games under your belt you will quickly learn to dread those Rally rolls. It is a new paradigm for C&C gamers.
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Jon Snow
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goo

Thanks, Charlie! I suspected as much, but don't have the game yet. The two Brooklyn actions were not fought on connected areas, although close as you mention.

Just a note also that I've checked out the forum for Horse & Musket: Dawn of An Era Due to the above threads, one might think it covers the ECW period, but it does not. Instead Vol. 1 covers 1683-1739. Later volumes will apparently go to 1865. Of course, this earlier 'plug bayonet' period is rarely covered in games, so that sounds interesting.

But personally, I much prefer C&C to HTL.
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David Groves
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Hi Jon

Following on from Charlie, I've only played the 2nd Battle of Long Island a couple of times and I think that the Brits won both. The Continentals are sandwiched in between two strong Brit forces but that doesn't mean that they couldn't pull off a win. I will try out this scenario more later on.

The first of the two scenarios I've played a lot and love it. Both sides stand a chance of winning but I feel that taking the hill on the left of the Continentals position is a must for the Brits to give them a substantial kick start of two VP (1 VP for the Continentals). The Continentals only have four provincial units in the area but can reposition their guns to provide a field of fire on the Brits as they move towards the hill with their better quality troops. It's a must for the Continentals to take the hill first because of quality and quantity inferiority to the Brits but if they do I love the ensuing struggle for the hills. However, in true C&C style it can come down to cards rather than dice but if both sides get a fair share of cards to fight with on that flank it makes for excellent gaming

Moving on to Horse and Musket, you are quite right, the scenarios do start a few decades after the English Civil wars of the 1640s but I thought the flavour would still linger in the earlier scenarios. I was going to buy this game but committed to Tricorne instead; my budget would not stretch to two such expensive games plus shipping at well over $40 each and then UK import duties (£28.00 for Tricorne alone). Also factored in was the superiority of Tricorne's components and the fact that I just love anything Commands and Colors.

Finally, the flag situation. Charlie is quite correct in that it does give rise to a new paradigm for C&C players.

Imagine a position in CCN where a grenadier infantry unit with the ability to ignore one flag has three enemy line infantry units advancing towards it with a hex in between them. The first volley fired by the enemy units after moving into position produces an artillery symbol and a flag, so a miss and a retreat. Would you choose to ignore the flag and subject the unit to two more volleys from the remaining two units or would you fall back, in tact and out of range? I think you would choose the later rather than holding ground and risking casualties.

Now, a similar situation in Tricorne presents a totally different problem. A lone Grenadier unit can ignore the flag and face two more, two-dice volley's or it can fall back a hex and be subjected to two one-die volley's instead (Tricorne units have a 3 hex range and not 2)but if it does that it will be subject to a rally check. Now, in Tricorne it is important to keep units at full strength because they get a +1 die adjustment in attack and rally check dice. As soon as a block is lost the bonus is lost and it makes a lot of difference. So, to avoid losses a retreat is preferable. In the case of a full-strength grenadier unit the rally check dice would amount to six-dice. This X2 gives 12 flags and you only need one which more or less makes it a given that the rally check will be successful. But what if it isn't??? Not only do you give a flag to your opponent but you lose a full-strength grenadier unit. Game over? Who knows, the same bad luck could happen to your opponent, which would level the field again (only the Continentals don't have elite units) but the likelihood is that it won't, which puts you at a distinct disadvantage. It depends how risk averse you are as a player but that is why flags are dreaded. Of course, a two block militia or provincial unit in the same position only gets one rally die, which gives the possibility of two flags and so there's every chance of a lost unit but then these units cannot avoid a retreat unless supported and so you just move back and cross your fingers, very tightly.

You're going to love this game.

Dave
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Mark McG
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robwarduk wrote:
C&C:Musket and Pike would be welcome as well.


I've never managed to try these, but they look intriguing
http://prometheusinaspic.blogspot.com.au/2016/09/peter-breke...

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David Groves
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Minedog3 wrote:
robwarduk wrote:
C&C:Musket and Pike would be welcome as well.


I've never managed to try these, but they look intriguing
http://prometheusinaspic.blogspot.com.au/2016/09/peter-breke...



Looks great. I love some of the Chaunce cards.
 
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