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Subject: Now I know why it is called The Whirlpool rss

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Andy Cowen
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The Whirlpool

Gettysburg: The Wheat Field is an excellent game; one of the best war games I've played. I especially like the order system and the battle cards. They add a lot of tension and thematic feel to the game. You don't have god like control over your units. You set things in motion and see what happens and try to adjust to a dynamic situation, Chaos Theory in a game. My only minor issue is the game needs more info markers and maybe use a 15 mm scale instead of 6 mm. I hope this game gets the GMT deluxe treatment eventually.

I surely messed up some rules like the brigade activation, I activated all of one side and then all of the other, instead of alternating. Poor photography to be added later...

Turn 1 17th ME set up along the Wall. De Trobriand''s other units set up forward just north of the road. Tilton's brigade sets up facing generally SE, and Sweitzer's brigade in column west of the Stony HIll as a reserve.

Confederates automatically have the initiative on Turn 1. The Union plays the card "Bad Intelligence", Confederates change Anderson's attack brigade order to defend. The Confederate's strategy is to make a strong push in the center, strait for The Stony Hill, bypassing the Stone Wall. The Confederates make a cautious advance into the rocky woods, opposite the road. Turn 1, rather uneventful.

Turn 2 Confederates win initiative. The Union plays "Stray Bullet" Anderson is winged and knocked from his horse. The Confederates are thrown in disarray and their order is changed to "Confusion". The second in command tries to restore order but fails. The 11th GA, 9th GA and 3rd AK, are now all out of command. Confederates exchange ineffective fire with Union troops, the 8th and 9th GA, position themselves for a possible charge next turn. The Union: Ward's brigades slowly work their way West, Tilton and Sweitzer start to adjust their brigades for the defense of the western approaches to the Stony Hill.
Union rifle fire shakes the 3rd AK.

Turn 3. Anderson returns to the fight. He attempts to change the brigades order from confusion to attack and fails, confusion reigns in the Confederate ranks. The Confederates spend the turn firing rifle volleys and destroy the 1st MI. Tilton switches his brigade to attack order and tries to take advantage of the Confederate confusion. The 118th PA charges the 9th GA and is repulsed and shaken. Artillery fire shakes the 11th GA, ineffective rifle fire. Sweitzer continues to try coax his brigades into position, hard to accomplish with only 2 actions per brigade.

Turn 4: Anderson succeeds in changing his brigades order to "attack"; the Union promptly plays "Bad Intelligence" and the Confederates switch their order to "defend". Rifle fire erupts all along the line; 8th NJ breaks, 18th MA breaks, the 118th suffers three hits, but the Union plays "Rally Around the Flag". The 11th GA Reorganizes. Union: Rebel fire opened a gap in the center, so De Trobriand pulls his other brigades back, to shorten the line. The other Union units reorganize and take pot shots at the Rebels. Ward continues to advance to threaten the open Rebel right flank. Artillery fire totally ineffective.

Turn 5: Confederates win initiative. Anderson attempts to change his brigade's order to "attack" and fails, the Confederates remain confused; Kershaw doesn't arrive. Rebel rifle fire by the 59th GA and 8th GA shake the 5th MI. Rifle fire from the 9th GA devastates the 118th PA, reducing them to one stand. The Union: Sweitzer, finally gets his brigades where he wants them. DeTrobriand adjusts the Union line in the center, Union rifle fire is ineffective. However, Union artillery fire gets a disorder 4 on the 9th GA.

Turn 6: Union wins initiative. The 3rd MI, arrives and deploys in front of the artillery to screen them, when Kershaw's brigade comes on. Sweitzer changes his brigade's order to "defend". The Union plays "Inspirational Speech" to remove shaken marker from 5th MI. Union artillery fire on the 9th and 11th GA is very effective, both units become shaken and go to ground. The 9th GA takes casualties. Follow up long range fire from Sweitzer's brigades on the ridge line breaks the 9th GA and eliminates a stand. Milling around in the open isn't really a good idea. The Confederate command confusion has really messed up their attack. Union rifle fire in the center is ineffective. Confederates: Kershaw arrives! Anderson activates first and again tries to goad his brigades forward and fails?! The Anderson brigade is still under a confusion order. Anderson goes to his tent to sulk. The 11th GA withdraws toward John Rose Farm. The 8th and 59th GA tentatively advance crossing the road. Kershaw activates with an attack order. The 3rd SC chases off the 22 MA AND 118TH PA with a flank charge, 22nd MA breaks, routs thru the 118th PA, which also breaks. However, the 3rd SC is shaken as a result of the close quarter combat. The 2nd SC advances and fires on the 32nd MA; the Rebels play "Murderous Fire" and reduce the 32nd MA.

Turn 7: Union wins initiative. Tilton switches his brigade to a "maneuver" order and tries to reorganize his shattered brigade. Artillery fire can't hit the side of a barn. DeTrobriand pulls back toward the Stony Hill. Sweiter's brigade's rifle fire is effective, 2nd SC suffers two reduced stands and is shaken. Confederates: Anderson's brigade again tries to change their order and fail. Kershaw activates. 8th SC plays "Rebel Yell" and charges the 32nd MA, who fail their moral check and withdraw. 2nd SC pulls back. 3rd SC plays "Rebel Yell" and charges 4th and 3rd MI. 3rd and 4th MI stand fast and deliver fire into the charging rebels a vicious close quarter fight ensues. After the first round the 4th MI withdraws but the 3rd MI fights harder. Epic stand by the 3rd MI reduces the 3rd SC to three reduced stands, before they are eliminated. The 1st NY battery then unleashes a point blank bombardment and the 3rd SC is wiped out. The 7th SC charges the PA light battery, the panicked gunners only manage to score one hit and are destroyed in close quarter combat.

Turn 8: Confederates win initiative. Kershaw activates. The 7th SC wheels and charges the flank of the NY Battery D, wiping them out and then pouring rifle fire into the 4th MI which routs of the board. THe 8th SC then charges the 62 PA. The 62 PA holds. Close quarter combat; the 62 PA beats off the attack. The 8th SC is decimated. Kershaw then sends in the 3rd SC battalion. The exhausted 62nd PA breaks and the Confederates gain a foothold on The Stony Hill. Anderson finally gets his brigade to move with an "attack" order. The 8th GA charges the 5th MI and is beaten back. The 59th GA charges the 5th MI, 8th NJ and 110th PA. Both sides hold and engage in Close Quarter combat. After three rounds the Union brigades break and rout back across the hill. The Union is now in complete disarray. But, they make a desperate attempt to throw the 3rd SC battalion off the hill. De Trobriand changes his brigade to "attack" order, but the Rebel plays "Missing Courier" and the order will be delayed one turn. The NY Battery fires at the 7th SC and misses completely. Rifle fire by the 110th PA eliminates a stand of the 59th GA; 17th ME misses. Sweitzer changes his brigades order to "attack", the 32nd MA fires at the 3rd SC Battalion and misses, return fire by the 3rd SC Battalion breaks the 32nd MA. Tilton changes his brigade's order to "attack", the 22nd MA charges the 3rd SC battalion; and is eliminated in Close Quarter combat. Then the 1st MI charges in and the 3rd SC Battalion holds. At this point the Union only has 3 good order stands; all other units are either broken or eliminated. The Confederacy will receive two brigades next turn as reinforcements and the the 7th SC is poised to eliminate the last Union artillery unit; so the Union concedes.

There is a lot of replay value in this scenario because of the variable entry of the Kershaw brigade and the options for victory open to the Confederate player. I also like the asymmetrical nature of the scenario. The Union has artillery, which can be deadly if given time to fire. The Confederate forces are generally much better quality than the Union troops, which gives them more actions per unit and their brigades consist of 3-4 stands while most Union brigades only have one or two. And the Rebels have much better leadership. So, the Union has to have a good initial set up, because it extremely difficult for them to redeploy in a timely manner; which hurt them in this game. It might be better for the Confederates to spread out and pressure the Union all along the line; otherwise they run into traffic jam problems.
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HERMANN LUTTMANN
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Thank you Andy for the kind comments and such a wonderful report! I'm glad you're enjoying the game so much and appreciate the "chaos" that's built into the system. Too much player control is not realistic and we did try to give the game the feel of the actual battle. Into The Whirlpool is almost ready for serious play testing - stay tuned. Thanks again! Hermann
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Andy Cowen
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HORST324 wrote:
Thank you Andy for the kind comments and such a wonderful report! I'm glad you're enjoying the game so much and appreciate the "chaos" that's built into the system. Too much player control is not realistic and we did try to give the game the feel of the actual battle. Into The Whirlpool is almost ready for serious play testing - stay tuned. Thanks again! Hermann


Hi Herman,
Thanks for designing a great tactical game and supporting the game on this site. I forgot to mention that the graphic design and examples of play are also top notch. I was able to pretty much figure out how the game works through the player aids and examples and then referring to the rules when I had questions. Looking forward to the expansion and I'm planning to get a second copy of the Wheatfield when VPG does a "Gold Banner" version of the game.
Andy
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HERMANN LUTTMANN
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Awesome, Andy, thanks again!
Hermann
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Jim Waite
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Thinking about purchasing this game only
If it has solo playability. Did you play
Solitaire and if so how did it play.
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