So the usual suspects came over on Sunday and we took the new "Brigade Fire & Fury" over for a test spin.
|THe usual suspects, Dave and Ken finishing the setup. You can see the new Brigade Fire & Fury rules under Ken's left arm.|
We decided to go with the "smaller" McPherson's Ridge scenario but minus Howard's Corps. I had enough miniatures to get the feel of the battle and had some of the most important and famous units on the table.
|Iron Brigade starts to move into position as Buford's Brigade withdraws. Cutler's Brigade can be seen straddling the "railroad cut" in the upper part of the pic.|
|Rebs almost reach the McPherson Barn and are headed into McPherson's woods.|
|Archer's Brigade gets into position to deliver some enfilading fire onto Cutler's Brigade!|
|Ken's wearing Dave's reading glasses.|
|Lots of reinforcements for the Yankees!|
|Pettigrew's 13 stand brigade! Crikey!|
|The Iron Brigade - a Crack Unit - "those damn black hatted fellows."|
|THe Iron Brigade taking on two confederate brigades!|
|The full battlefield as the Iron Brigade starts to conduct a retrograde under fire!|
Anyways I'm debating whether or not to let the Iron Brigade die in place since this is a wargame but looking at the mass of Dave's reinforcements (regenerated from the casualty pile - tell me that's not a kick in the pants!) I feel as though I'm going to need them for when the Rebs hit my main line of resistance.
Another thing I'll mention is that I attached Reynolds right to the Iron Brigade and he never died.
The Union line is starting to take shape around the hills near the McPherson woods and it's turning into "Fortress Seminary Ridge"as I've already lost the other side of the Chambersburg Pike. Devin's Cavalry Brigade makes a sacrificial last stand for me but it's enough to keep the Rebs on that side occupied.
|Dave's line shaking out with more reinforcements!|
|The Iron Brigade starting to take casualties now as well.|
|The Union line starts to form and "Fortress Seminary Ridge" position is being assembled.|
|Devin's Brigade is having the Devil's own day|
|more rebel reinforcements coming in now and it's starting to look grim for the Yanks.|
|The Iron Brigade has about had it after repeated Rebel assaults|
I lost complete track of time becoming totally invested into the defense and the ever growing Rebel ranks to my front! We called the game at 7:00pm and I was exhausted. I will say that Fire and Fury as a leisurely game is best played if you have the entire day or even the entire weekend to play. As casual Sunday game where you only have 3 or 4 hours it's probably not the best game if you want a decision in a short period of time. We probably played a good 4 hours and had not reached a decision yet. One could argue that the time scale was pretty realistic but I want something a little faster.
With that said, I did have a blast and I believe Dave and Ken did as well (Ken was more of our rules aficionado and umpire) and as I stated before, this game reminded me of all the reasons I love Fire and Fury. Historically plausible outcomes, realistic maneuvers, tactics, and operations, and a great narrative are all features of this great game and if you want a truly grand-tactical American Civil War game that retains the flavor and feel of Horse and Musket fighting while putting you in the Corps Commander's saddle, then these rules are worth looking into. As for me? Well it's safe to say unless I'm going to play them at a Convention, I have retired Fire and Fury in favor of games that play a little quicker (Neil Thomas ACW from Wargaming An Introduction, Black Powder, Rank & File being 3 examples) but they'll always have a special place in this gamer's heart.