Had a great game of Sharp Practice yesterday. I umpired and played the late arriving French Cavalry while Mark played the East Southhamstershires. Jim played the naval landing party and Dan (of Foxhole Terrain fame) played the French Legere. We also had a new player, Cody, who took over Jim's Naval landing party when he had to leave.
Dan and Cody both had never played SP before. Cody observed for most of the game and took over when Jim had to leave. Both picked up the game very quickly. What was interesting was seeing the players choices with utilizing formations or not. At the start of the game, no one used formations. But both British players (Jim and Mark) then switched to line formations to engage the French. Dan used all of his big men separately to move individual groups forward and engage.
The naval gun only had a few rounds to fire and it put quite a pounding on the French troops. I attempted a modified rule to attempt to open the opportunity for friendly fire. It did not work. Back to the drawing board.
The French troops that moved into the fields got stuck in the fields. With only a level 1 big man to motivate them, they did not make it much further. Those troops did not have much of an effect on the game.
Choosing to not use formations, the various french groups soaked up lots of shock.
The casualties mounted much quicker on the French as the individual big men were focused on engaging the enemy rather than removing shock. The British used the lesser big men to remove shock and allowed the men to fire on their senior officer's activation or on the Tiffin.
Unfortunately for French, by the time they attempted to form up, the damage was done. At least four groups of French were sent fleeing off table, two big men were badly wounded and another two (including the senior officer) was captured.
The French cavalry arrived too late to have a significant effect on the game. The best they could offer is to cover the infantry's retreat. All in all, it was an excellent game.
A big Thank You to Mark who remembered to bring a camera. All the pictures included here are his. I look forward to the continuing adventures of the East Southhamstershires.