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RULE CHANGE - Corps Commander vote

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RULE CHANGE - Corps Commander vote

Post  Father General on Wed Nov 28, 2012 3:47 am

Corps Commanders:

Please vote yes/no or amend the following rules.

1) With regards to the tactical map, the umpire will no longer set victory conditions or objectives for the sides. Both sides may remain engaged or disengage at will regardless of the general outcome of the skirmish. With regards to the strategic map, the ranking officer in the node will make the decision to move or remain.

2) The umpire will distribute ancillary victor's spoils (promotions, special unit names, weapon upgrades) consistent with the score.

3) As per the OOB, win/draw/loss application will be adjudicated by the umpire and WILL NOT be disclosed to the commanders.

General comments are welcome, but only corps commander votes/amendments count.

Thanks,

_Neal
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Re: RULE CHANGE - Corps Commander vote

Post  Uncle Billy on Wed Nov 28, 2012 8:55 pm

1. Aye

2.NAY!!!! Gen. Georgia works hard for his booty of silverware and jewelry. Plus I have a growing list of people to payoff regularly, Sec. of War, nuns, concubines, President's wife, own wife, etc. Where does it end? Georgia keeps his ill gotten gains and does as he wishes with it. Mostly, I quickly ship it out of state.

3.Why do you lack the courage of your convictions?

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Re: RULE CHANGE - Corps Commander vote

Post  Leffe7 on Wed Nov 28, 2012 9:11 pm

1. Agree
2. Agree
3. Agree (as a commander you should receive reports after battle how many men are left, killed or missing. No need for a global declaration of winner/looser. It is the commanders decision how to interpret the numbers/losses and he also doesnt know exactly if the enemy lost more or fewer men.)
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Re: RULE CHANGE - Corps Commander vote

Post  Uncle Billy on Wed Nov 28, 2012 9:38 pm

3. Agree (as a commander you should receive reports after battle how many men are left, killed or missing. No need for a global declaration of winner/looser. It is the commanders decision how to interpret the numbers/losses and he also doesnt know exactly if the enemy lost more or fewer men.)
Yes, but what criteria will be used to determine a win or a loss? It is easy if one side decides to withdraw or is chased off the map. But what if neither side concedes defeat or the number of casualties differ by only a percent or two? We need ground rules here. I suggest in those cases that the game decision of victory, draw or loss be used. Both sides are still free to spin the battle results as they see fit.

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Re: RULE CHANGE - Corps Commander vote

Post  Mr. Digby on Wed Nov 28, 2012 11:29 pm

Somebody has to decide who won!

Usually in campaigns the rules do so, or the umpire. Leaving it to the players is really... odd.

Its a chicken and egg problem. Who applies the win/draw/lose criteria to the two armies after a battle, and on what basis?

To be honest, this is rather silly and its the first time I've come across this in a wargames campaign. Let the umpire decide the battle result, its what he's there for after all.

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Re: RULE CHANGE - Corps Commander vote

Post  Baldwin1 on Wed Nov 28, 2012 11:36 pm

There was no ump at Gettysburg, the top general usually decides when to leave or press on. But I understand if realism must be sacrificed to advance the campaign.
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Re: RULE CHANGE - Corps Commander vote

Post  Mr. Digby on Thu Nov 29, 2012 11:44 am

Wargames are not real war Baldwin. They're... games. We need to be PRACTICAL.

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"Any hussar who has not got himself killed by the age of 30 is a jackass." - Antoine Charles Louis Lasalle, commander of Napoleon's light cavalry, killed in battle at Wagram 6 July 1809, aged 34.

"I had forgotten there was an objective." - Generallieutenant Mikhail Borozdin I
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Re: RULE CHANGE - Corps Commander vote

Post  Leffe7 on Thu Nov 29, 2012 12:00 pm

Uncle Billy wrote: Yes, but what criteria will be used to determine a win or a loss? It is easy if one side decides to withdraw or is chased off the map. But what if neither side concedes defeat or the number of casualties differ by only a percent or two? We need ground rules here. I suggest in those cases that the game decision of victory, draw or loss be used. Both sides are still free to spin the battle results as they see fit.
Yes, the game result is a good base for the umpire to decide. However, I don't know when the game calls a battle inconclusive.
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Re: RULE CHANGE - Corps Commander vote

Post  Martin on Thu Nov 29, 2012 12:22 pm

I'm with Baldwin re commanders deciding whether to retreat. In face-to-face kriegsspiels we have often used Neal’s suggested approach. Typically in situations where victory is not obvious. So it is practical.

Here's the process we follow. When the battle finishes, the 2 team commanders are asked privately what their intentions are for the next several hours or days as appropriate. The results can be surprising, as it's a question of fog-of-war, and what’s in the players’ minds. You sometimes find that the team which the umpires felt was is on top decides to retire, and the one that was apparently on the ropes hangs on.

If we do use this approach in the campaign, it’s important that the commanders do not have time to work through all the stats from the OOB before making that decision. Why? Because the real generals would not have had an accurate count of their own men still available for several hours. They would have had even less idea of their opponents’ condition. They would depend heavilly on such information as their subordinates could supply. Yet the decision whether to retreat would need to be made before nightfall.

If this approach is followed, I would suggest that each team has a maximum of 5 minutes in a T/S room to confer. Any commander separated from the boss by enemy troops cannot participate. Immediately following this, each commander tells Neal what they are doing in a one-to-one. That is reported back to the opposing teams in their next briefing.

If both sides remain on the battlefield, then there is the potential for another battle. Plenty of ACW battles extended over 2 or even 3 days after all. But it doesn’t necessarily mean a succession of battles over the same terrain on the same map on successive days.

Let's take our last battle at New Market as an example. Had both teams chosen to remain on the field, the Confederates would have retained the good ground. The Union might have decided to attack them there again, but might instead have decided to shift to the south or the west to flank them off their position. That in my view would not be a withdrawal by the Union as they would only follow such a course if they were ready to fight again. Depending on scouting, the Confederates *might* have become aware of this. They would then have the decision whether to shift to the new, possibly less good ground, or retreat. In that event, both sides would have given Neal their intentions, and he could have created a new scenario (possibly on a new map, if it was a wide envelopment) with troops deployed accordingly.

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Re: RULE CHANGE - Corps Commander vote

Post  Mr. Digby on Thu Nov 29, 2012 5:05 pm

Battles of a division size never lasted over more than a day. The main reason some ACW battles (and battles in all other eras) last(ed) more than a day was because the armies were huge and when marching to the battlefield could not all arrive and be deployed in one day. The battles were continued in subsequent days principally by fresh formations, not the same exhausted formations fighting again in isolation.

As we get further into modern times we see this more and more. Some Napoleonic battles lasted more than a day, though these were rare due to generally smaller armies and a fairly good road network in central Europe.

From the time of the ACW we see multi-day battles more in Europe as well, such as in the Franco-Prussian war. Again these are due to fresh formations arriving. Never, I don't believe in history, have the same tired, unreinforced sides fought again on a second day. If they have, these would be the very rare exceptions and one shouldn't base the rules of a wargame camapign on them, since then the exceptional can become commonplace which isn't representational of the warfare.

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The other Martin - Charles Reille, le dernier Maréchal de France.

"Any hussar who has not got himself killed by the age of 30 is a jackass." - Antoine Charles Louis Lasalle, commander of Napoleon's light cavalry, killed in battle at Wagram 6 July 1809, aged 34.

"I had forgotten there was an objective." - Generallieutenant Mikhail Borozdin I
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Re: RULE CHANGE - Corps Commander vote

Post  Father General on Thu Nov 29, 2012 5:24 pm

My personal preference is to remove my discretion as much as possible from the decision making process.

Ultimately, both corps commanders get to decide this rule change. It basically grants them the power to decide what they want to do, which I feel is historical.

-Neal
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Re: RULE CHANGE - Corps Commander vote

Post  Baldwin1 on Thu Nov 29, 2012 5:51 pm

Our units in total are more like Union sized corps they just haven't had the commands divided up. I believe a corps vs corps siege situation could take multiple battles. The battle of Harper's Ferry had two days of fighting with a corps vs division, so I wouldn't say it could never happen. Like Martin said I think it's an interesting dynamic and creates some mystery as to whether the enemy will retreat or stay to fight it out again.
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Re: RULE CHANGE - Corps Commander vote

Post  Martin on Thu Nov 29, 2012 6:05 pm

Yes that’s fair comment, Baldwin. New Market was considerably larger than a division-sized battle, with perhaps perhaps 12-14,000 engaged on each side. As well as your example of Harpers Ferry, there were other corps-sized battles lasting more than one day, such as Pea Ridge (1862), Corinth (1862) and Mansfield-Pleasant Hill (1864). It was relatively unusual though.

But the main thrust of my earlier post was that whether to stay on the battlefield was a key decision, and one that commanders historically took. I’m not sure what the advantage is of artificially taking that decision away from them. I can see disadvantages - for example unnecessary arguments about who won and who lost, based on whatever criteria (terrain, casualties, guns, routs etc) one side the other cherry-picks.

Remaining on the battlefield gave a number of advantages. You could secure & repair your damaged supply wagons, limbers and guns. You could care for your wounded. You were likely to recover stragglers more quickly. You retained any terrain advantage you might have held or captured. Your men would feel more bold because of all of these things, and because you were not retreating. So you did not withdraw unless you felt you could not stay. It was a decision fraught with risk however. Lee stayed on the field for a day after Gettysburg, even after the battering his army had taken, for these reasons. A huge risk, but it worked out because Meade felt unable to attack himself.

What I am suggesting is that the campaign should reflect that risk/reward tension. If you stay, and end-up fighting the next day, your units will only have recovered a part of their morale and fatigue stats, because you will not have had time to reorganise. If some of your brigades were not combat-effective by the close of today’s battle, it’s unlikely they will be fit to fight tomorrow. So, do you feel lucky punk Very Happy

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Re: RULE CHANGE - Corps Commander vote

Post  Mr. Digby on Fri Nov 30, 2012 11:17 am

Martin wrote:If you stay, and end-up fighting the next day, your units will only have recovered a part of their morale and fatigue stats, because you will not have had time to reorganise. If some of your brigades were not combat-effective by the close of today’s battle, it’s unlikely they will be fit to fight tomorrow.
There's no suggestion that this will happen. Both sides will be magically fully resupplied and fresh and eager the next day. Among the many reasons Lee quit the field after three days fighting at Gettysburg was because he thought he simply didn't have the artillery ammunition to fight again.

None of these subtelties are included in our campaign, but a very simple mechanism is usually included in nodal map games - loser retreats. That takes care of almost everything.

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The other Martin - Charles Reille, le dernier Maréchal de France.

"Any hussar who has not got himself killed by the age of 30 is a jackass." - Antoine Charles Louis Lasalle, commander of Napoleon's light cavalry, killed in battle at Wagram 6 July 1809, aged 34.

"I had forgotten there was an objective." - Generallieutenant Mikhail Borozdin I
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