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"Lucas Bend on the Mississippi w/ lots of Blood, Sweat & Iron" Topic


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739 hits since 18 Aug 2021
©1994-2021 Bill Armintrout
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Personal logo FlyXwire Supporting Member of TMP19 Aug 2021 3:34 p.m. PST

Hi Guys,

Today was my 1st run-through of the Blood, Sweat & Iron ironclad rules by Mac Cross, in a small scenario I've been working up towards doing in 1/600th scale (using Thoroughbred & Brown Water Navy models). The action was inspired by the handful of small clashes fought around the Lucas Bend on the Mississippi, just south of the Union river base at Cairo, Illinois and above the Confederate fortifications at Columbus, Kentucky, in late 1861 and early 1862.

Here's my generic river mat ready for the playtest, with direction north in the foreground, as the USS Tyler pursues the Confederate scout boat the CSS Grampus into the bend, and its fate to follow -

Followed on by the the USS Lexington, the small Union flotilla pushes resolutely towards the bend, spotting a small rebel gun position on the far shore, which answers the call to duty with some ineffective fire as it gets the range -

Skillfully piloted by my opponent Kevin, the CSA Grampus circled up river and behind my Union gunboats (nothing too worrisome, right?), until it's light 12lb. rear gun hit the Lexington and started a fire -

Luckily, the Lexington struck back, and a critical hit on its pilot house puts the Grampus heading northward for the moment, but now another Confederate gunboat has maneuvered into range after coming upriver from Columbus, the CSS Jackson -

As the general engagement developed, it soon became apparent that the Union Captain in charge [me] has sailed himself into a bit of a hornets nest. The calamity continues, with the Jackson running aground, but now hits on the Tyler have caused a fire to break out….the accumulating damage quickly gets out of hand, and the Union Fleet Captain momentarily flashes a worrisome gaze back northwards, towards the elusive safety to his rear -

It will ultimately be a fleeting moment, and the incoming shot and shell adding to the flames, ends any chance for a dash to safety there has been a Union disaster on the river what will the Northern Press write of this, let alone the Southern papers!

The game was a blast, and from the setup to finale it took Kev and me just about 2 hours to play. The rules were easy to convey, and as you can see, Kevin had no problem putting them to good use! ;)

The game was a closer affair than my hyperbole here might indicate, but the effective critical damage scored against the Union gunboats, as a result of my bold venture [disregard] into the bend to mix it up with the smaller enemy ships & shore battery, led to the Union defeat.

The game rules are excellent. I was worried that with such a small game scenario there wouldn't be enough granularity in the rules to make for a competitive match no problem there, as we got in quite a few turns, and there was plenty of action and moments for making decisions.

I'll run this scenario again now at a games day coming up in a few weeks, and won't be changing a thing…..except perhaps advising the Union player(s) then to maybe keep a healthy respect out for them rebs.

Fitzovich Supporting Member of TMP19 Aug 2021 3:46 p.m. PST

As the Rebel Commander I must echo the sentiments regarding the rules posted above. The game played smoothly with only one rules question coming up that was a bit ambiguous as written.

Lucky dice rolling on my part rather than any great strategic genius lead to most of the woes suffered by the Union side.

A great time with an easy to play and very well written set of rules.

Thanks to FlyXWire for a fun afternoon and an extra rum ration to the gun crews aboard the CSS Grampus, CSS Jackson and our Shore Battery.

John the OFM19 Aug 2021 4:15 p.m. PST

Good lucking board, good looking ships.

Personal logo David Manley Supporting Member of TMP20 Aug 2021 9:09 a.m. PST

Lovely mat, and the ships are gorgeous :)

Lonely Gamer20 Aug 2021 12:13 p.m. PST

@ FlyXwire glad you had fun playing the game, the set up and the models look really lovely.

Personal logo FlyXwire Supporting Member of TMP21 Aug 2021 3:32 a.m. PST

Kev, John, Dave, Mac – thanks all for your compliments!

Personal logo Howler Supporting Member of TMP22 Aug 2021 6:05 p.m. PST

Wow! A homerun if I've ever seen one

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