We are going to consolidate Brandywine, Monmouth and the new Germantown into one Campaign set.
Brandywine will be the main game that includes the blocks for all the battles. Monmouth and the new Germantown scenarios will be like the Waterloo expansions: Ligny, Quatre Bras and Wavre. They will just be maps and scenarios. No blocks. This will make them much cheaper and lower the average cost of the battles!
If you have the old Brandywine, no worries. We will send you an update kit for FREE with another order. We will list these on our products page when ready.
We are working on Scenario Updates to better fit the 3.0 rules. A couple of the scenarios will need new stickers and a few extra blocks. We are putting together Scenario Update kits for this. You will be able to add these on to orders for FREE!! We’ll post these on our Products page as they are ready.
What is the best name for the new Dispersed units?
We have lots of wrong answers. Help us out! What is the best thing to call these things?
This is what we’ve tried so far and the problem with them:
Everybody seems to have PTSD over early Avalon Hill Dummy units. Nobody likes them.
This doesn’t really fit the scale. Skirmishers are a part of each unit. Each block has a skirmish line deployed out front. This is a big part of what makes up the Field of Fire. (FoF) If we use this term, it will get confused with that.
This could be a term but many times Light Infantry were massed into big formations. They were also usually elite units. That doesn’t fit.
We thought this was a term with no issues but apparently not. Some other games must use this as a term for a unit’s status. Like when it gets badly disrupted. Pub Battles calls that “Spent”. Dispersed Troops are not a status that regular units become. They are there own special units. A unit type.
Scouts / Patrols
This is a good term from Kriegsspiel. Scouts and Patrols are only 1-5 man units. They can’t cover much ground or fight at all. They were also mounted. So people will get this confused. Murphy’s Law.
Columbia Games call units like this: Static units, Garrisons or maybe Cadres. These terms might fit WW2 aplications better. I’m not sure if they fit well for a musket era battle.
So what exactly are they? Mostly, they are blank / decoy / dummy units. You use them primarily for strategic deception. You can also use them to screen. They can actually fight and slow down the enemy.
If this was a more modern era, I’d almost call them recon units. That doesn’t really fit the era though. Hmmmm….
I don’t know the best thing to call them but they are amazing and work great in the game. They give the game the perfect feel. -That IS historical and profoundly realistic.
Managing baggage trains can seem overwhelming at first. As wargamers, we aren’t used to thinking like
this. Does it sound tricky? It can be but that’s what makes it so fun!!! It is worth the effort.
Here is the basic rundown:
1. Combat flips your pieces to Spent.
2. Only Unpacked baggage can rally them back to Fresh.
3. Unpacked baggage can’t move.
4. If your baggage gets sacked, you lose. Game over.
Here are a few basic tips to get you up and running quickly:
When to Unpack Your Baggage?
The Baggage Trains are critical to victory. Here are a few tips to get you started and
keep you out of trouble:
Don’t unpack too soon.
Don’t unpack too far forward!
Let’s say we’re running the Feds at Gettysburg, Day 1. We deployed Reynolds’ I Corp along McPherson’s Ridge. The Confederates launched their first assault. We drove the Rebs back and mostly held. Fantastic but our line is now Spent.
At this point, it is very tempting to unpack. We are off to a good start. If we unpack we can now rally this line and maybe hold much longer!! Sure that’s true but it’s not good enough.
Don’t marry the first girl you kiss! Yes, you need to have commitment issues!!
Unpacking is a huge commitment. Don’t unpack because things are looking good
right now. Sure you may be able to hold
for another assault. Especially if you
start rallying. Maybe you can hold for
another couple of turns. Still not good
Here is the key question you need to ask yourself:
If you unpack, can you hold this for the rest of the battle?
Yeah, not a few turns.
Can you hold this line for the next 3 days? Come what may? What happens when Ewell comes storming down
out of the north 2-3 turns from now? What
if Jackson and Stuart unexpectedly show up?
Can you still hold that for 3 more days?
I didn’t think so.
With Baggage Trains, you need to think very long term. The whole battle depends on it, so think in terms of the battle.
The beginning of a battle is the trickiest part. You need to be constantly asking yourself
Where is the enemy’s main threat? How strong is the enemy? Where can I delay? Where and when will reinforcements arrive? Where can I fall back to? Where can I make a stand and hold for the entire battle? How can I minimize casualties until then?
Blow by blow, as the battle is developing, all these answers
will be changing. You need to constantly
reassess the situation. Where can you
fight? Can you even fight here at
all? Maybe the best solution is to never
unpack. Just fight a delaying action for
a day and then bug out. Sometimes that’s
all you can do. Is this really a battle
you can fight? Is it a battle you can
Once you unpack, things get much more simple. None of that matters anymore. You’re all in. Now the question becomes: How on earth can I possible hold this
line? How can I take pressure off and
distract the enemy? Where are his
unpacked trains? Can I get to them
before he can get to mine?
Did the enemy break through?
Can you counter attack and drive him back? How much longer can you hold out? Is it time to give up and pull the plug? It is much better to voluntarily bug out than
let your baggage trains just get sacked.
Pack up and go home. You can
fight another day.
For Offense, unpacking is more simple. Two key questions:
Has the enemy unpacked yet? Where?
Do NOT unpack unless you are sure the enemy already has. If you unpack too early, you will be hopelessly overextended for the rest of the battle. You will never be able to mount a serious threat.
Once you are sure the enemy has unpacked, you need to
formulate your overall strategy for the battle.
Where is his line going to be? How
can you crack it? What is the weak
link? Where are you going to make your main
effort? Think long term: For the whole battle, not just the next turn
or two. You need to plan ahead for this.
Wherever your main effort will be, your trains need to be able to effectively support that.
Where to Unpack Your Baggage?
Now that we know when, the next question is where? Where is the best place to locate your Trains? This is fairly simple. It just requires a little careful planning.
Work this backwards.
Defense: Where is the line you plan on holding?
Offense: Where is the defender’s committed line? Where will your line be to assault that?
Ok now, where will your troops be when they retreat off that
Your Baggage Trains need to be able to rally this spent line efficiently. Simple place them where their range will extend over most of this area.
Finally, don’t worry too much. You don’t have to be perfect. The enemy won’t be perfect either. Just dive into a battle and try
something. Experience is the best
teacher. “Ah, now I see why I shouldn’t
have unpacked there.” Yeah, well the
upside to making a big mistake with baggage trains is that the battle will be
over soon. Now you know. Now you’ll remember. Now you have plenty of time to start a new
The new rules are out! All the new games are shipping with them. You can get an updated copy by emailing the company and asking for a pdf. What’s new?
There are a few little tweaks and refinements to the main rules. Nothing big. The basic game is essentially the same.
The Fog-of-War has gotten a huge upgrade. The Hidden Reserve rules are now standard. They are also much easier to use. The HQ marks the exact location of the hidden troops. The old way was confusing and open to all kinds of abuse. This is clear and it works.
There are new units: 1 step Detachments. These vastly increase the deception. What are those 2 blocks sitting back there? Elite Guards, waiting to pounce at the right time? Or just a couple of Detachments faking me out? Hmmmm…..
These two rules together raise the uncertainty bar. How close is the enemy to breaking? How many reserves do they have left? Will one more good assault do it? You can only wonder. Perfect!!
The biggest change is Victory. The Baggage Trains are key. As your troops fight, they become spent. Only Baggage Trains can Rally them back to
fresh. Here’s the catch: Baggage Trains can’t Rally until they
Unpack. What’s the big deal about
that? Unpacked Baggage Trains can’t move. Even worse:
if they get sacked, it’s battle over.
You lose. Yeah, it just got
Basically, they are like mobile VP locations, except you
lock them into place. We need to take
that hill. Why? Because the game designer says we have
to. It’s worth a lot of points. No!
Because we think the enemy has unpacked their baggage behind it. If we can take that, we win!
YOU decide when and where to set these ‘VPs’ down. In order for your troops to fight effectively, they need unpacked baggage. As soon as you do this, it becomes a target. It is a double edged sword.
The ramifications are immense. Where do you make a stand? What line do you think you can hold? Where do you need the baggage trains to
support that? If you unpack too far
forward, you won’t be able to protect them.
On the other hand, the sooner you unpack, the sooner you can start
rallying your troops and the better you will be able to protect them.
I find myself thinking like a real commander with these new
rules. Where is the enemy? What are they doing? Can we beat them? Do we even want to fight a battle here? Where do we form a line? Where can we hold? How can we shatter their line to win? Where is their baggage? When do we throw in the towel and give
up? You’ll be asking yourself all these
questions over and over again because the battlefield results will be
constantly changing the answers. What
now?! What does this mean? How does it impact our plan? Do we continue to press forward or is it time
These very simple rules turn Pub Battles into a very deep,
strategic game of position, maneuver and planning. The results are astounding.