Sunday, May 04, 2008

Final Cowpens Test-Success at last

Mark Waddington, Gil Fussel, Jr., Scott Abbott and Lawrence Bateman helped me out with my last Cowpens test yesterday. I made some changes based on our last go-round about five weeks ago. We agreed that the conditions of the battle were, in fact, difficult to reproduce. It's not surprising-often battles turn on such small chances, it's those little things that generate such interest. At Cowpens, Tarleton turned out to be a rash commander, rushing into battle without reconnaissance, not knowing that he was facing a considerable militia force with just enough backbone to beat his brains in. However the mechanics of allowing a large American militia force to retire safely from the battlefield in the face of an advancing enemy, returning again to fight, is difficult to re-create.

After our last playtest-which was so discouraging, I put the advice of others into action. The Americans were able to fight their second line off the table and return, while the cavalry did arrive on the flank of the British and administer a crushing defeat. Though enough of the Brits were present to retreat a chunk of their troops off the table-avoiding the Tarleton calamity. However, with most of the British cavalry gone and the American horse relatively intact, it might have been a nasty show for the little force.

In any case I'm looking forward to Enfilade and trying the game for real. I need to finish up some troops, and make some modifications to the rules and the tables, but I'm much further along than I was afraid I might be. Thanks to Mark, Scott, Lawrence, and Gil.

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