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  1. This game has a lot of potential! In fact, it could be the best Civil War battle game made. However, it's missing some pieces. I wouldn't post this if I didn't care but I think Game Labs actually cares what the players think. Here are crucial elements that affected my gameplay. They seemed minor at first but got really annoying after a while. I will make a block of text Italic when its background information for supporting my complaint. 1) Confederate Army Has Obvious Advantage That Goes A Bit Too Far This is a complaint that some other players have said and after playing with both armies, I totally agree. The CSA has a distinct advantage over the Union. At the start of the war, the CSA had a distinct advantage in generals and quality of soldiers. Many of the generals had experience with the Mexican War 13+ years back and the men who made up southern army handling guns from the time they could walk. What's more, people from rural backgrounds will most likely be able to handle the rigors of long marches, lack of food, lack of adequate shelter and stress much better than their city counterparts. Having said that, as the war drew on, this advantage disappeared. For one, many of the best southern generals were killed and the northern soldiers were catching up. By the summer of 1863, the quality of soldiers from the Union was pretty close to their southern counterparts. The reason the Army of the Potomac was losing battles had nothing to do with its soldiers. From all accounts, the men who were present at Fredericksburg, 2nd Manassas and Chancellorsville were as brave as you can be. It was the successive appointments of unqualified and incapable Major Generals (many of whom got their position by their connections in Washington) that were responsible for blunder after blunder after blunder. Now...back the the game. The Confederate troops are unrealistically better than the Union. Its overblow to an obvious level that gets frustrating quickly. They can withstand the worst of situations (very low moral and condition) while the Union troops seem to run at the first volley that gets fired at them. Every charge done by the CSA ends in a route for them. Pressing "charge" for any Union unit is a complete waste of time b/c it never works. They always loose the melee. The Iron Brigade and Vincent's Brigade were not the only decent units at Gettysburg. 2) Infinite Artillery Negates Union Artillery Advantage There should be a limit to the amount of shells each artillery unit has. They either need to run out until the next battle or have to resupply. The only advantage the Union army has in this game is its superior artillery. They have more artillery most of the time and can be better concentrated multiple artillery units because they have shorter interior lines. You can really mass artillery units together to help make up for your poor quality troops. The amount of artillery available to each army is relevant to the battle. Some may call me nitpicking but this has a HUGE IMPACT on the battle. The CSA had enough cannons but couldn't resupply them as fast as the Union. They lacked quantity of shells and the supply wagons that carried them were significantly further back. This could never be more true than during Pickett's Charge. The whole plan of General Lee was to bombard the center into smithereens and then send 15,000 into a softened center. Problem is, they ran out of artillery ammo shortly before the charge started and couldn't support the army. They had more 170 guns massed in the center to the Union's 80 but spent their whole supply during that two hour artillery barrage. While they were charging on the 3rd day, the Union artillery is mowing the rebels down before they even hit the fence while the Confederate guns are silent. In essence, I'm saying that if you're going to make the Confederate soldiers so much better than the Union then you need to make the Union's artillery advantage equally better than the Confederate. As the game stands, the Union has a small advantage in this department but not enough. In this game the CSA wins the 3rd day with too much ease. The Union artillery doesn't do enough to break their ranks up and the Union soldiers crack. When I'm doing Pickett's Charge as the CSA, I can put the troops on autopilot. I told every brigade to charge towards the center and won with ease. Main reason: the Unions primary advantage on this day is highly mitigated. Note: I know the 3rd day is hard to replicate because no Gettysburg game has gotten it right. Sid Meier's....same thing. The artillery of the Union, as programmed, can't do enough damage and their soldiers can be easy overwhelmed. 3) Seminary Ridge Needs To Be Further From Cemetery Hill They are way too close. They need to be distanced. One of the reasons why the 3rd day is so unrealistic is because they CSA seems to only have to charge a couple feet to get to the center line. This make the 2nd con I just mentioned more pronounced because the the Union gets a 1-3 good shoots before the Confederates are upon them. 4) Stuart's Cavalry Has Too Big A Footprint It seems awfully easy for Stuart's cavalry to to flank me from behind on the 3rd day. Custer's men don't put up much of a fight (even though they win a battle one day later) and the southern cavalry easily charges through massed volleys. I find myself having to divert an insane number of men and artillery to keep him at bay. No matter what his casualties are when I do this, he regroups after a couple minutes and charges at me again. Unrealistic! Harass. Maybe. Attack supply lines. Yes. Disrupt. Yes. Maybe I'm wrong but I never remember horse cavalry attacking the main army in massed formation like that. Bufford could be used to counter my argument but he was doing more a delaying action that anything and they were dismounted. 5) Defense + Entrenched + Hill Advantage Seems Weak In This Game The Union's good ground is not emphasized enough. You get a slight advantage but its not enough. It's not that hard to overpower an enemy entrenched on high or entrenched ground. High ground is one of the main reasons why the Union won the battle. It is insanely difficult to attract an enemy that is entrenched on the high ground. He is stationary with usually some sort of cover and you are walking at an incline with less cover. Malvern Hill=Union Win, Gettysburg=Union Win These were the only times the Union had the high ground. The Confederates had this advantage in all the other battles and won or the outcome was deemed a "tactical draw." The hills need to be bigger and harder to penetrate without some extreme flanking maneuver. The stone walls need to give the Union Army in the center more of an advantage. Plan of Action Make the Union army not so weak Make the artillery shells a finite resource that needs to be replenished (won't mind overly weak Union soldiers at present state if this is implemented) Fix map to make the distance between Seminary Ridge and Cemetery Hill further apart. Make calvery more susceptive to mass artillery fire. Make the defensive advantage an army gets more pronounced. The offensive player during the Civil War had the harder mission and should be reflected in this game.
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