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War Between the States
War Between the States

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Price: $150.00

Stock Status:(Out ofStock)
Product Code: 3013

War Between the States, 1861-1865, simulates the American Civil War from the opening shots at Fort Sumter to Lee's surrender at Appomatox. During that conflict, over 3 million men fought from a total pre-war population of some 30 million. About half-a-million died or were permanently incapacitated by disease or combat wounds. It was the great crisis of American history to date. War Between the States uses three maps to cover the major theaters of operation from Galveston, Texas, to St. Joseph, Missouri, and from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to Jacksonville, Florida. A total of 1400 counters represent various units and game effects.

Game turns represent the passage of a week of real-world time, with "cycles" intervening during which players carry out such routines as production, blockade, construction, politics, etc. Each game turn is divided into two player turns, during which one player or the other may move his ground and naval combat units on the map and attack his opponent. There is an off-map roster system to track the fluctuating strengths of the ground combat units. The combat system requires both players to secretly and simultaneously choose one of several combat options. Cross-referencing those choices determines which combat results table is used to resolve each battle, thereby determining the extent of strength point casualties to be assessed against each player's units, as well as other combat effects. Heavy losses normally result only when both players desire a major battle. Logistics is crucial in the game. Supply must be expended in each cycle on existing forces or they are exposed to possible attrition or elimination. Combat supply may be expended as a result of battle, and it's difficult for a force of any size to operate for long when out of supply. It is the slow movement of supply trains, coupled with the time necessary to repair railroads and fund supply depots, which limits the extent and depth of each player's strategic offensives.

The game can be played as a huge campaign using all three maps and simulating the entire war from beginning to end. That requires hundreds of man-hours. Alternatively, six scenarios are also offered, covering the eastern campaigns of 1862, 1863, and 1864, along with three others covering the western campaigns of those same years. The scenarios vary in length from eight to 24 game turns. When playing them, players don't execute the intervening cycles, since production and related matters are built into their systems. The scenarios are also designed to play on just one or two maps.

The American Civil War was the first modern war. It was overwhelmingly a war of attrition between nation states. Given the enormous personnel and economic superiority of the Union over the Confederacy — a consideration reflected in the game — the South usually loses. It therefore normally a question of how quickly the South loses, compared with the historic outcome, which determines who wins each game.

Components: 1,400 counters, (3) 22" x 34" maps, player aid cards and displays, 40-page rule book, 11x17x2 inch box.

Average Customer Review: Average Customer Review: 4.5 of 5 4.5 of 5 Total Reviews: 2 Write a review.

  2 of 2 people found the following review helpful:
4 of 5 Good, solid game on the Civil War January 5, 2013
Reviewer: Jeffrey Vandine from Taos, NM United States  
This was a good game when it first came out (though there were some difficulties with the leader rules there), but the revision does a lot to fix those issues and make the game even better.  The combat simulation, as well as the strategic issues the two sides needed to concern themselves with, function very well.  The Leadership system, as revised works better and gives the players some insight into the issues (though in my opinion it still doesn't do as good a job as Victory Games' Civil War did).  The naval rules are good and work well with the land combat system.  The production rules are outstanding and really confront the players with some issues that they need to carefully consider as they raise and use their forces.  The political rules, alas, remain a bit confusing as to what their intended effects are and how they are simulating what was going on, but can be worked through.  Overall, this is a good game, made even better by this revision of it.  Keep up the good work!

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  3 of 3 people found the following review helpful:
5 of 5 A Nice Civil War Game... July 19, 2011
Reviewer: Brian Kaess from Durango City, Mexico  
I played "War Between the States" a few years ago and fell in  love with the game. Union and Confederate Armies were built up  tastefully to fight and outmaneuver each other. General counters and the leadership modifiers they represented were in line with the history of the times. Plus, the grand scale of the game is excellent, extending from the Army of Northern Virginia to Confederates in Texas. One could build up forces in three theaters, just like in the history books. What comes out through play is how much of a "war of attrition" the Civil War actually was. Amazingly, the North is strong enough to make it to Mobile and Atlanta. Northern Naval forces easily outnumber the South so it is a little bit of a romp in that regard.  I had fun replaying certain battles such as Bulls Run, Gettysburg and Vicksburg. When the South wins a few victories, you may feel like Grant in his tent at Shiloh, but it won't take long for the North to recover- she simply had more men.

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