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Subject: Wargames about the Italian Unification (1848-1866) rss

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M St
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usrlocal wrote:
1) Have any other good wargames on this topic come out since the above-mentioned Geeklist (i.e., between 2007-2011)?

Can't think of any offhand; this is not a frequently dealt-with topic.

Quote:
2) What wargame(s) on this topic would you particularly recommend?

Operational/strategically: Risorgimento.

Tactically: Solferino 1859 and Magenta 1859.

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3) What book(s) on this topic would you recommend as a companion to help enrich the wargaming experience?

The one I would definitely recommend on the 1848/49 campaigns is Michael Embree's Radetzky's Marches which came out this year.
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Jon
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Not sure about #1, but I have always liked Risorgimento 1859. The goal was to provide grand tactical battles with quite simple rules and, therefore, pretty playable. I think that was achieved. There is a strategic game included, but I have not played it. I do recall some criticism of it re: cavalry ops.

Warning....Solferino is a big battle. Only two maps, but we are taking about 100,000 troops per side.

The only book I have is the Osprey one. I like it (I like them all), but it is not nearly detailed enough for my tastes.
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Enrico Viglino
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Capt_S wrote:
There is a strategic game included, but I have not played it. .


My plan is to give you an opportunity to at least watch it. :D
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Jon
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calandale wrote:
Capt_S wrote:
There is a strategic game included, but I have not played it. .


My plan is to give you an opportunity to at least watch it.


I should just create a "vicarious wargammer" microbadge for myself...
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武士に二言無し
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Hi Peter,

As I've already written in another thread for Risorgimento 1859:

S.Martino and Solferino are the Battles that I know better (for year 1859) and in this game they are depicted very well: maps are good (from 1 to 10, 8.5), OOB is historical and accurate (9).
I've played it several times but the mechanics is ... well designed, easy to master but just a little boring.
The campaign is a bit more interesting and playable.
All togheter I rate it a 5/6=play & forget ... but sometime re-play (next for the 200th Anniversary!) .


A good read, streamlined and accurate enough, is .
It just a little bit old (1907), but it's the only English book that comes in my mind.

F.



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Enrico Viglino
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Capt_S wrote:
]

I should just create a "vicarious wargammer" microbadge for myself... ;)


Conflict footsie?
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Jon
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calandale wrote:
Capt_S wrote:
]

I should just create a "vicarious wargammer" microbadge for myself...


Conflict footsie?


21st century DIGITAL conflict footsie.

LOL!
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M St
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usrlocal wrote:
The Bennighof and Vae Victis games look interesting but perhaps harder to obtain.

Not true for the Vae Victis games - they are still in print from the publisher and he mails overseas. But yes, I do tend to recommend based on perceived quality of the game, not availability.

On the other hand, I note that the designer of the GMT campaign game has your first name and initials, so perhaps that is the game for you.
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Jon
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I hope you like it Peter should you pick it up.

If you are into games like the GBACW series and the like then I think you would like this one. As I mentioned it is not as complex as others, but still has things like lots of counters, command and control, corps activation, etc. You know, all that grand tactical goodness. Those games are not for everyone, but there are spot perfect for me a lot of the time.

The really odd thing about this game (the battle scenarios) is that the units have one combat number that represents cohesion I think. Or perhaps some combat/cohesion hybrid.

Make sure you get the Living Rules...
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Steve Arthur
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Not really on topic but would just like say how constantly amazed I am despite years of reading how many gaps there are in my knowledge...

Q:How much do I know about this subject?...

A:Zero!!
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Jon
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Hey Peter.

Time period-wise were are taking about contemporaries to be sure. I would not doubt it in the slightest that exchange officers from Europe and the US were present at each other's carnage (in fact, wasn't McClellan and perhaps Kearny in Europe on such assignments...hmm?). There are certainly many connections between the wars from this time persiod. Consider:

US-Mexican 1846-48
Crimea 1853-56
Indian "Mutiny" 1857-58
Risorgimento (2nd Italian War of Independence) - 1859
US Civil War 1861-65
Austro-Prussian - 1866
Franco-Prussian - 1870-71

We are spanning, oh, 25 years here. The same names keep popping up when you read the histories of these wars for respective armies. It is rather interesting.

It is my understanding that this was a transitional period in warfare in many respects. Rifles replacing muskets. Breechloaders replacing muzzle-loaders. Trains. Telegraphs. You name it. However, these leaders were just coming to grips with the impact of these new toys. They had studied the "Napoleonic" model of warfare and so you see a lot of similarities on the battlefield as a result. Structually, there are rather identical. By and large they were all regiments -> brigades -> divisions -> corps -> armies. Command were set up accordingly.

Sooooo, what does that mean. From my observations quite a few of the grand tactical battle games that I have experience with are quite similar. It does not hurt that the same designer, Richard Berg, created many of them too. LOL! Anyway, they often have armies that are composed as mentioned above. There are often brigade, division, corps and army leaders and there are command ranges for each to allow for tactical control (actually, I think Risorgimento does not have division leaders interestingly enough). Depending on map scale, rifle and artillery ranges are pretty consistent as well. Most regiments have a morale and/or cohesion rating and there are often facilities for brigade/division morale failure.

Yep, I think there are quite a few similarities. In fact, I would stretch it back to the Napoleonic (La Bat series) and if you squint to the 7 Years War (BAR), although the latter is much more linear in feel to me.

+++ sent without proofreading ....

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M St
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For 19th century battles (before armies became large enough and firepower thinned them out so much that you end up with continuous fronts in the 20th), you basically have four factors that determine the conduct of a battle: movement, command control, weapons, and doctrine. The first two remained essentially unchanged: movement was on foot or horseback, and command control in battle was done by (a) preplanning and (b) sending written or verbally delivered orders. (Telegraphs and trains aren't battlefield tools and so didn't affect this.)

So the main distinctions over the period were the new weapons that came in and how doctrine adjusted to them. Usually, by necessity, doctrine was behind the curve. As a result you can get different interactions depending on how those factors match. You can use the same base framework but I don't think you can simply use the same rules for all armies and get sound success and attrition outcomes across the era. Australians fighting in storm columns and using badly aimed muzzle loader fire in 1866 are going to do even worse than if they just used their weapons in af fashion that would not give the Prussians every advantage; Frenchmen with a somewhat better breechloader can stop well motivated Prussians every time (until the Prussian artillery comes up) etc. You can deal with this probably OK if the game is at a very high level.

I don't remember how Koger's game reflected these differences but I don't remember it doing a great deal beyond troop numbers and some overall quality/morale modifier. That's probably not enough, especially given that it was reasonably low scale. Either way, its command model was fairly simplistic.

The best study of the European side of this that I've seen in game form has been done in miniatures rules. I don't remember offhand what the company's name is, but the rules are distributed through Clash of Arms. The titles give the subjects away: 1859, 1866, and 1870. Alas, I don't think there are a 1854 and 1861-65.
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Ethan McKinney
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"Mediaeval Miscellanea" http://www.mediaevalmisc.com/gtr/
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M St
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Thanks, Ethan.
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