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River of Death

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  1. River of Death

    CSA Career Points help needed

    For my money, the only time you need AO at 9, for either Union or Confederate come to think of it, is Chickamauga. Only there is the battlefield large enough and your corps restriction (2) small enough that having 6 brigades per corps is a *requirement*. I've pulled off 2nd Bull Run (MG Confed and Legendary Union) with 3 divisions 4 brigades per corps and won without undue difficulty (lots of micromanagement, sure, but nothing undoable). On balance, I agree with only increasing AO as you need it. However, after Medicine/Politics (in some order), I would push to max out Economy in addition to Training. Order may vary to taste. But if you're going to be selling weapons in the second half of the game (a definite thing to do) then getting the most money for it is imperative. On the flipside, my experience has been that only in a few Grand Battles is putting anything into logistics helpful, and there you should be aiming to capture supply wagons anyway.
  2. River of Death


    Very generally, US vs CS in barracks: More money and more weapons, Less well-trained troops. You'll spend more money to make and keep your troops 2- or even 1-star, especially at the size increases from 1500-2000-2500. You'll not have to worry as much about 'overall' resupply or overall troop count. More specifically: No 1841 proto-rifles in the early game. You're either in melee-only '42s, or Lorenzes. Nothing in between. That impacts who gets what weapons and how much money you'll be willing to spend. Similarly your 'main' sharpshooter gun is not as good as an unscoped whitworth. You're either going all the way to the Brown or not at all, to get bang for your buck. Artillery is strictly better, just about, and cavalry weapons similarly (who spends money on LeMats, anyway?)
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    Mukremin's CSA Legendary Campaign

    I think your plan from 1 post ago is the way to go: Go all out attack and Win on Day 1, Encounter 1, or the battle turns into a long slog that is difficult enough on the lower levels. What I've done (admittedly only on MG, not legendary), is the following: Your 7 best infantry units + 1 battery of 24's either charging or north-flanking (I go for northward flanking) Old Cold Harbor - send 2-3 brigades into the northeast trees at the run, to arrive just in time to slow down the arriving VI corps. These brigades will definitely lose and rout to the west eventually - careful micro can delay this as long as possible. Meanwhile plant the 24's on the point and equally-well micro the main line infantry to get flanking fire to wear down the Union cavalry as much as possible before the VI corps reaches the main point. They do have a long while to march, so if you delay them early they will not have much time, and likely not their entire force, to attack the point. Even then it will be a near-run thing. Losses will be catastrophic compared to the number of units engaged, but still significantly lower than fighting the entire battle. At this point, with 2 more battles' worth of assaulting fortifications before reaching Washington, it is not worth it to try to whittle down the Union's numbers so much as it is to keep your own forces as numerous as possible.
  4. River of Death

    Historical accuracy of the game

    For accuracy I would add: Overall Mechanics - the variety of unit types and weapon types plus the use and *relative* impact of each, unless being intentionally gamed, matches well with real history. Also the impact on morale of damage output and taken as well as flanking, thus impacting battle strategy. (I would *not* include condition in this list, as in-game even units with zero condition can be pushed far more than in real life). Grand Battle Layout - on balance, the key VPs were the key VPs in real life, the initial placement of units (on defense) and arrival times and strengths of reinforcements (on attack) match real history very closely, as indeed does the 'advice' given during the battle. For inaccuracy I would add/modify: Minor Battlefields. Almost every single minor battle is fought on a smaller map that, if you investigate, is a cut-and-paste from one of the Grand battle maps. Broadly the minor battles may, usually, thematically approximate what happened in real life (and certainly they serve their purpose to make varied and unique challenges for each battle by using different pieces each time). However, they are rarely as accurate as the Grand battles are.
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    Union Legendary Campaign - Take 2 - Completed

    Regarding supply cap: I found that when playing as the Union I could get at least my 1st corps (I forget what was the case with my 2nd) up to 70,000 supply, and any value over 35,000 would give a second wagon. When playing as the Confederacy all corps were limited to 35,000 and 1 wagon. If a consistent feature this may make some sense, considering the sides' supply capabilities in real life. Can anyone with authority give a definite answer?
  6. River of Death

    2nd Bull Run

    What I have found, generally speaking, is that the briefings match pretty well to real history (with exceptions, natch). So, if your side historically won a given battle, it may be fairly safe to follow the briefings. But if your side historically lost the battle, then you more likely want to deviate early and often. Thoughts?
  7. River of Death

    CSA chancellorsville

    Any of the campaign battles in which your side won in real-life history, you must always consider trying to emulate what worked. You have got some pretty good numbers for the Confederates at BG level, so I think it should be doable. Day 1 - don't do nothing, but stay on the defensive. Move up through the woods to get the best firing line possible (into open ground is best), anything up to the edge of the big opening around Chancellorsville. Do not attack past that point no matter what, but make sure that the Union will actually attack you. Cheaply knock off 5 or 10 thousand of them at a cheap KDR while you can. Day 2 - by all means smash Howard. But don't attack any farther than you can keep flanking them and keep the KDR in your favor. Likely this means knocking the Union back to the main Chancellorsville fortifications but not attacking those. Also make sure to engage your eastern forces in a repeat of Day 1 (this will involve a lot of multi-tasking. Do not be afraid to pause liberally or even play at half-speed). Day 3 - now, and only now, go on the all-out offensive. Pick your points, try to flank, use cover to your advantage....the works. And you likely will take heavier casualties today than in the first two combined. But getting the outright win instead of the draw should be worth it, IMO.
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    LAVA's Legendary Union Campaign

    A thought - If one is willing to settle for a draw going into the battle (which may the case on Legendary depending on the numbers breakdown), what if you deliberately retreated all the way to the southern objectives? Make a line at the edge of the woods (with 2nd corps reinforcements arriving 30 minutes earlier due to shorter marching distance), and slaughter the Confederates attacking over the open plains. Strong artillery becomes the icing on the bloody cake. I've never tried this, and wonder what more experienced people think. Or - if the end timer is not a *strict* end time as some are - do the above strategy, wait until you have wiped the Rebels to half-strength or less, then bull rush the main point. May this result in affordable casualties?
  9. River of Death

    End of Campaign Imbalance

    Does anyone else feel that at the end of each of the campaigns, the minor battles just before Washington and Richmond are rather unfairly uneven? By this I mean the following: Both of the Confederate minor battles (the Vicksburg one and Hardin Pike) involve just more of the same from the Cold Harbor campaign - attacking multiple layers of fortifications. If you reach this point in the game then you have your strategy down - pick a single point, bull rush with multiple brigades (maybe with melee weapons), have the first 2-3 rout and the last one open a hole, then flank the fortifications from there and widen the hole, etc. etc. Fine and dandy, though it gets repetitive quickly. But unlike the Cold Harbor campaign battles, at Vicksburg and Hardin Pike the fortifications are many layers deep, and in many places your charges are slowed by irregular woods and creeks. Considering that you barely outnumber the Union at best (maybe far worse), these battles become a big slog, taking very heavy casualties. Considering that the Union will be reinforced for Washington anyway, it doesn't really help (much, weapons capture is the minor exception) if you succeed in wiping them out in the minor battles - the most important thing is your own force preservation, but that is virtually impossible considering how deep (and in multiple places) on both maps you must penetrate. If you fight well you can just barely recoup your losses, then waste money on training and weapons to bring your brigades back up to strength for Washington. In comparison the Union does have one of its minor battles like this (whats-its-name Bluff), with much the same difficulties. But the *other* minor battle is the Georgia Railroad. Very thematically similar to Jackson, you are on the Defensive and with fairly good though long fortifications. Eschewing them for woods (or held by skirmishers) in strategic places, you have just enough brigades to make reserves against the points where the Confederates charge you. You are never outnumbered more than 2:1 (maybe much less depending on how the campaign went). Fight this well and you can have a fairly cheap wipe or almost-wipe that can be favorably compared to many other battles from the whole campaign. I find this quite a fun minor battle, in fact. The "problem" is that you actually will replenish your reserves and make money as a result of this battle, plus wiping the Confederates will measurably (if slightly) reduce their forces for Richmond. My issue is that this makes the end of the game significantly easier for the Union. I know that the chance of anything being changed now is roughly 0%. But wouldn't it be more interesting and enjoyable if the Confederates had a minor battle in the last campaign that was something less than a slog? Maybe replace Hardin Pike with something like Peachtree Creek - you will still be on the offensive but there will not be any fortifications (or maybe just a few minor woods fortifications), with fairly even numbers and a large map; thus giving you at least a *chance*, given good play, to gain a little bit of money and recruits in time for Washington.
  10. River of Death

    Reused Maps

    I have noticed, after playing through the campaign several times, that a lot of maps for one battle are re-used in another battle. Sometimes this makes perfect sense - namely if in real life the two battles happened at the same place (example - 1st Bull Run is almost entirely contained within 2nd Bull Run, and the southern part of Cold Harbor overlaps entirely with Gaines' Mill). But for several other battles the only reason would be that the developers did not want to waste effort making new maps when their old ones are perfectly reusable. I don't mind at all - it means that you can learn strategies in one scenario and apply them to another scenario, plus the simple fact of approaching an objective from a different direction leads to new tactical challenges. That said, I think it would be helpful if we had a List, in one place, of what battles (Grand and Minor) are fought on the same terrain. My post will include every battle that I can remember, but Please Feel Free to update and add any more battles that you think of (and attach the right names to some of the minor battles). ------ In order of Grand Battles: 1st Bull Run is roughly the eastern half of 2nd Bull Run (extending a bit east of the Stone Bridge), but there are at least two occurrences beyond that. The southwestern region of 2nd Bull Run, at the town of Groveton, is re-purposed as Newport News (Confederate minor Battle in 1st Bull Run campaign) - you defend from the south as Union attacks from North, NW, and East. The western edge of the map, crossing over the creek, overlaps with the Confederate minor battle of Weapons Factory (Harper's Ferry) in the Antietam Campaign. Shiloh gets re-used once confirmed. It's southeast portion, from the river to the southeastern 2 objectives (Camps), is also the second-to-last minor battle of the entire Union Campaign - forgot the name (something-Bluff) - where as the Union you attack west and north from the river into Confederate Entrenchments. I *think*, but have not confirmed, that the northeastern area around Pittsburgh Landing (final objective) is also the first of 2 minor battles in the Union Chancellorsville campaign, where you attack Longstreet and try to destroy 3 heavy batteries in a fort along the river bank. Gaines' Mill, besides overlapping Cold Harbor, also has its western portion re-used (the lake by the dam). It is the Union minor battle River Crossing (Shiloh Campaign), where the Union attacks from the west, across the first stream, to take 2 hills. [Cold Harbor has a bunch of its own overlaps; see further down this list]. Malvern Hill has its map show up in at least four minor battles. The northern portion, where the stream is crossed by 2 bridges and 2 fords, becomes the Confederate minor battle of Cross Keys (Gaines' Mill Campaign), where you defend the woods west of the stream against Union attacks from the east. The far southeast part of the battlefield (East Malvern Hill Objective) is used Twice. Once is the immediate next Confederate minor battle - Port Republic: you attack into the woods from the northwest, and then defend against Union reinforcements arriving from the northeast across the stream. That same area also becomes a Union minor battle - the 1st of 2 in the Antietam Campaign (forgot the name - one of the 2 Gaps) - where you attack from the southeast uphill into the woods to take the little house at the corner where the field begins. Finally, the West Malvern Hill objective is the stage for the Union minor battle of Bayou Forche [sic?] in the Chickamauga campaign - you can flank the position to the north by the upper bridge, or by the part of your force arriving from the southeast. A set of minor battles use exactly the same maps - the very first Union minor battle (Distress Call) and a Confederate minor battle in the 2nd Bull Run campaign (Manassas Depot) use the same map - the one with 2 supply depots in the western portion of a big field surrounded by woods, that you have to hold/attack. For a second set: the Confederate minor battle of Corinth (Fredericksburg campaign) is the area around the south-central objective marker of the Union minor battle of Jonesboro/Georgia Railroad (Richmond campaign). The town of Sharpsburg (from Antietam) is apparently also the town of Winchester, as it and the woods to its west and northwest is the focal point of 2 minor battles (1st Winchester, Confederate minor battle in Gaines' Mill campaign, and 2nd Winchester, Union minor battle in Gettysburg campaign). Additionally, the far northwest corner of the map overlaps with the Union minor battle of (Siege of) Suffolk from the Chancellorsville Campaign. (I have not yet found any Re-uses for Fredericksburg). Stone's River shows up again a few times. The area around the final objective markers was seen once before by the Confederates as Stay Alert, a minor battle in the Shiloh Campaign, where you defend the area against Union attacks from the western half of the compass. The area around the middle objective markers (phase 2) becomes Hardin Pike, one of the last Confederate minor battles in the Washington campaign, except the Union now has Fortifications up the Wazoo. The southwestern portion of the map (the open area west of the initial objective markers) is used in another Confederate minor battle - Prairie Grove - in the Fredericksburg campaign, where you defend against Union attacks coming from the north. The heavy woods at Chancellorsville lend themselves well to a few minor battles. A rectangle formed from the Chancellor House (main objective) and going southeast becomes the Union minor battle of Iuka (Fredericksburg Campaign) where you attack from the south and enjoy overrunning outnumbered ill-equipped Rebels. Starting from the same corner and make the rectangle a lot larger, and you get Brock Road, a Union minor battle in the Cold Harbor campaign. The far south-western region of the map (not usually in play unless something *wild* happens on May 2nd) meanwhile is the Confederate minor battle of Saunder's Field that also happens in the Wilderness (Cold Harbor campaign). [While both of these battles *could* be made to overlap as they did in real life, here the game developers messed up. The Union minor battle should be where the Confederate one is, and the Confederate one should be about half-way up the left side of the map rather than at the corner.] Meanwhile, the northwest quadrant (over which the Confederates attack on Day 2) overlaps with the southern half of the Confederate minor battle of [Siege of] Jackson from the Chickamauga campaign, with the main east-west road from Chancellorsville being the southern border of the latter's map. Gettysburg's iconic map still manages to show up in a few other places. The western part of Day 3's map, from the very fringe of Cemetery Hill and Ridge down to in line with the Peach Orchard, and heading west, overlaps as the "eastern" [really northern, the map is rotated] half of the Confederates' minor battle of Laurel Hill from the Cold Harbor campaign. Meanwhile Culp's Hill is the same objective as the West Redoubt objective from Hall's Ferry Road (Vicksburg), a Confederate minor battle in the Washington campaign. Going south from there, sticking just east of the main objective markers (in what was IRL the Union behind-the-lines area), you then reach the 1st Franklin battlefield (Confederate minor battle from Chancellorsville Campaign). Chickamauga shows up in at least 2 other places. First, the area from the middle 2 objective markers and heading west into the wooded ridge, is the *other* Union minor battle in the Antietam Campaign (the -other- Gap), where you attack from the east across the small stream to seize the heights. Second, the bridge crossing almost forgotten on Day 1 (since it uses Wilder's brigade, which is not your own), happened as another Confederate minor battle, Blackwater Heights, from the Chancellorsville campaign. Cold Harbor is a huge map that shares terrain with a record *6* (at least) other engagements (besides, of course, Gaines' Mill, overlapping from real life as previously mentioned). The far northeastern portion of the map (comes into play on Day 2 as the Confederate Left Flank objective) is right on top of Salem Church, the "minor battle" (in quotes because it is a mandatory one) that is a part of the Grand Battle of Chancellorsville. Proceeding southwest from there, the open area northwest of the next objective marker (Bethesda Church) is the map for the Confederate minor battle of Ambush Convoy from the Shiloh Campaign. From there, going due south and stretching to the eastern edge of the map gives us a bunch more minor battles where the stream comes in from the east. North to South, the first is Thoroughfare Gap, Union minor battle from 2nd Bull Run, where you hold a wooded area northeast of the stream and the Confederates attack from the Southwest. Extending this map a bit south gives you the a Confederate minor battle Cedar Mountain (also from the 2nd Bull Run campaign), with exactly the same position [but not actually the same position in real life] so now you (Confederate) are the attacker. Then this map in turn overlaps as the northern part of a later Confederate minor battle (Chantilly, from the Antietam campaign), where you defend 2 wooded areas against Union assault from the south. Taking us to the south-central area of the Cold Harbor map, at the Old Cold Harbor objective (basically the 1st Day 1 Map), gives almost the exact boundaries of Seven Pines, a Union minor battle from the Gaines' Mill campaign. Fort Stevens' (the Union mandatory minor battle immediately after Cold Harbor) map is, of course, contained in the map for the Confederate Grand Battle of Washington. But so is the infamous Rio Hill, Confederate minor battle in the Chancellorsville campaign, in about the same place (northwest area of the big map), just sans fortifications. Meanwhile, the battle of Mansfield (Confederate minor battle in the Cold Harbor campaign) overlaps with the south-central region of the 1st map of the 1st day of the Union Grand Battle of Richmond.
  11. River of Death

    Favorite Commander Choices

    This looks like a very cool idea! And a worthy thread for my first ever post I am assuming (correct me if I misunderstand your idea) that we are not restricted by a person's historical rank, either absolute or relative to other people's. On that basis, my ideal armies to duke it out are: Union Army 85,000 Commanding General: George H Thomas -1st Corps Commander: Ulysses S Grant --1st Division Commander: Phillip Kearny --2nd Division Commander: August Willich --3rd Division Commander: John Logan -2nd Corps Commander: James McPherson --1st Division Commander: William Rosecrans --2nd Division Commander: Joseph Hooker --3rd Division Commander: Charles Harker -3rd Corps Commander: John Reynolds --1st Division Commander: John Gibbon --2nd Division Commander: Henry Slocum --3rd Division Commander: Oliver Howard -4th Corps Commander: George Meade --1st Division Commander: Winfield S Hancock --2nd Division Commander: Gouvenor K Warren --3rd Division Commander: John Sedgewick -Cavalry Corps Commander: John Buford --1st Division Commander: John Wilder --2nd Division Commander: James Wilson -Artillery: Henry Hunt (with subordinates including John Menendhall and Charles Wainwright) -Training: George McClellan Confederate Army 70,000 Confederate Army Commander: Robert E Lee -1st Corps Commander: William Hardee --1st Division Commander: A P Hill --2nd Division Commander: Patrick Cleburne --3rd Division Commander: John Breckenridge -2nd Corps Commander: James Longstreet --1st Division Commander: John Bell Hood --2nd Division Commander: William Mahone --3rd Division Commander: Sterling Price -3rd Corps Commander: Thomas Jackson (semi-independent corps) --1st Division Commander: John Gordon --2nd Division Commander: A P Stewart --3rd Division Commander: Joseph Johnston -Cavalry Corps Commander: J.E.B. Stuart --1st Division Commander: Wade Hampton --2nd Division Commander: Nathan Forrest (semi-independent division) -Artillery: Porter Alexander -Training: Braxton Bragg I'm sure I have forgot a few people I wanted to include. Other possible categories to include may be Intelligence, Quartermaster, & Engineers.