On 20 January I introduced a new player to Longstreet, playing a scenario based on the fight for Blocher's knoll on the first day of Gettysburg. This was the fight to the north of the town between Howard's unlucky XI Corps and Ewell's Corps. The focus of the combat was a small hill, the only high ground on this part of the field. The PDF of the scenario is on the Longstreet scenario page.
I took the role of Schurz, commanding XI Corps on behalf of Howard, while Ian played the part of Ewell. This is the third time I have played the scenario, which has previously seen one victory for the Union and one for the Confederacy.
Ian got the hang of the mechanics very quickly and set in motion a focussed assault on Blocher's knoll from north and east. The outcome matched what happened on the day: the Union couldn't hang on to the high ground and a lot of Yankee regiments were chewed up trying to hold it. After a couple of decisive turns in which an intense bombardment was followed by charges along the line, Ian took the hill and sent my army over its shatter point. Not for the first time, the Rebel Yell card proved its worth.
This is an intriguing scenario, since the battlefield is divided down the middle by woods and a stream. The table is intentionally large for the number of bases involved, as the Union troops were spread very thinly on the field. Longstreet worked very well at this scale. Ian is keen to play the rules again. Next stop, the Peach Orchard.
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