Games (very long) duration

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bvera
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Games (very long) duration

Post by bvera » Mon Jun 11, 2018 8:23 am

A few thoughts on game duration after six months of playing GdA.

In general we are quite happy with the rules but we have not been able to conclude a single game yet.
We usually spent around 4 hours on Sundays and play with 3-4 brigades per side, so we allow for plenty of gaming time and do nothing like a big-big battle. Following six months of playing, players have a good mastery of the rules too.

I must admit that this situation is creating some frustration to my gaming group; and for that reason I'm looking for ways to solve the problem, to debate within my group. Let me put here for discussion some of the ideas and please feel absolutely free to make any comment.

A first idea is to limit the numbers of turns, forcing player to focus more narrowly on the game. Considering that each turn is around 20 minutes of real battle time and that a battle can range between 10 hours (summer) and 6-7 hours (winter) this will mean between 20 and 30 turns, which is like not putting any limit to the game.

A second idea was to award points of victory to each player for destroying units (from battalions to brigades) or impose victory conditions based on controlling geographical points on the table (a crossroads, a major road to disrupt the supply lines of the enemy, to cross and exit the table with a number of units...). This might be the best solution to explore.

A final consideration, deploy at shiorteer distance than we currently do to accelrate engaging in combat. We have noticed that when units start meleeing and/or firing games tend to accelerate a lot. We are also considering testing the blinds/fog of war mechanics (we have not used it yet) as this might also accelrate the phase of approaching into combat.

Just saw this morning that the 100 Days Campaign book will be released soon. I'll be very happy to play scenarios specifically designed by the DB to see if we are doing something wrong in the design of our battles that would allow us to shorten the duration of the games (or at least to reach some sort of clear conclusion).

As said before, please do comment at will on any of these (or other) ideas.
Thanks in advance
Benito
...and visit my blog! http://mylardiesgames.blogspot.com.es/

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john de terre neuve
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Re: Games (very long) duration

Post by john de terre neuve » Mon Jun 11, 2018 11:07 am

Very interesting post Benito. I have played 5-6 games of GdA so have nowhere the same experience as you have had and I suspect we are still in the learning phase. We have not concluded any games yet and usually have around 4 hours of playing time.

We did play our first game of Pickett's Charge last week and despite it being our first game and only having about 2 1/2 hours to play, I am pretty confident that the game would have been brought to conclusion in 4 hours (we played the starter scenario from the book). The mechanisms are the same as GdA but charging and melee are much streamlined.

I am hoping the campaign book as you suggest may speed up games, I suspect there will be some limitation on turns as well as maybe a set up that may force the troops into contact a little more quickly. I have not even read the section on blinds in either book so I would have to have a look.

In respect to your suggestions, I think specific victory conditions coupled with a limitation of turns may work although will result in a lot of drawn games. But also at the same time maybe being a less satisfactory conclusion for the players.

I believe however that your post is quite important, I wish I had more time to game but 4 hours seems about it for me and it would be nice to be able to conclude games in that period. We had a superb game of CoC this past Saturday that came to a clear conclusion in a little over 2 hours, it was fantastic.

John

siggian
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Re: Games (very long) duration

Post by siggian » Mon Jun 11, 2018 6:49 pm

bvera wrote:
Mon Jun 11, 2018 8:23 am
A final consideration, deploy at shiorteer distance than we currently do to accelrate engaging in combat. We have noticed that when units start meleeing and/or firing games tend to accelerate a lot. We are also considering testing the blinds/fog of war mechanics (we have not used it yet) as this might also accelrate the phase of approaching into combat.`
I don't have the rules so this might be nonsense, but how about you graft on the patrol phase of Chain of Command to determine the initial starting points of units (eg, put units onto the board with x distance of a JOP to start the game) and then remove the JOPs after placing the initial units and play GdA normally. Just an idea....

c0cky30
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Re: Games (very long) duration

Post by c0cky30 » Mon Jun 11, 2018 10:22 pm

We always come to a conclusion by playing the following:

16 Turns
2 objectives placed in Defenders deployment zone.
1 Objective in attackers zone.
(Based on Blucher rules by Sam Mustafa).
Draw deployment maps.
Deploy CinCs starting with defender.
Alternatively deploy by brigades starting with the defender.
Attacker must take 1 of the defenders objectives before the end of turn 16.
Defender can win by capturing attackers objective or by not allowing their objectives to be captured.

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john de terre neuve
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Re: Games (very long) duration

Post by john de terre neuve » Tue Jun 12, 2018 10:21 am

from cOcky30:
We always come to a conclusion by playing the following:............
2 questions.

How long are your games?
Do you play historical games?

Thanks,

John

DCRBrown
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Re: Games (very long) duration

Post by DCRBrown » Tue Jun 12, 2018 3:37 pm

The 100 Days battles range from 10 turns to 20 turns, the largest game.

Most are around 16-18 turns.

With just a 3-4 brigade game I am a little surprised you've not reached a conclusion. Most evening games should have some kind of scenario based objective, be that captured objectives, holding out a set amount of time or breaking through in a set time, or setting an "army" break-point:
E.G. MISSION
French: Demoralise or inflict a Sauvé qui Peut command roll result on two Prussian brigades by the end of the game. Or inflict three Retire command roll results across the entire Prussian command by the end of the game.
Allies: Avoid the French victory conditions.
I'd defiantly go with one or more of the following suggestions for all your games:

1) Limited game turns.

2) Set objective/s, linked to the number of game turns.

4) Set number of enemy brigades to destroy/inflict a Retire or Sauvé que Peut.

3) Reduce the Dispersal casualty level to 10 for all units except Guard, who are lowered to 12.

Hope that helps.

DB

c0cky30
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Re: Games (very long) duration

Post by c0cky30 » Tue Jun 12, 2018 10:01 pm

Hi John

Re:

How long are your games?
3 hrs

Do you play historical games?
Yes, but we limit turns and always set objectives.

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john de terre neuve
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Re: Games (very long) duration

Post by john de terre neuve » Wed Jun 13, 2018 10:36 am

Thank you, we will have to make those changes!

baxterj
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Re: Games (very long) duration

Post by baxterj » Wed Jun 13, 2018 11:40 am

the fact that you aren’t completing games in that timeframe surprises me too. We normally play a game over 3-4 hours with 4-5 brigades per side. I guess that you also need to work out what constitutes a win, whether it’s geographical features, loss of brigades or whether one side is in an indefensible position or deployment.

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bvera
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Re: Games (very long) duration

Post by bvera » Sun Jul 08, 2018 11:55 am

We replayed today a Wawre scenario from a Volley & Bayonet Waterloo campaign book.
We reduced the table size, set targets to the French and a 10 turn limit to achieve the victory. It worked wonders, helped focusing the French player (the Prussian was basically defending a line Belinda a river) and concluded in 3 huors with a clear French victory
Benito
...and visit my blog! http://mylardiesgames.blogspot.com.es/

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