Thursday, 9 December 2010

PBEM Test Campaign Update

The battle of Colbitz

I am very pleased with the way the test PBEM campaign is going.

Jan and I have just finished the first battle/wargame and the campaign system and battle report seems to have been well received by all ten players. I have asked for comments on the battle report, and all have been favourable.

We have now started the second battle/wargame. Unfortunately it takes place on the same campaign day as the first battle. So we will have to complete both before we can see how well the results transfer back to the campaign.

This will be the real test of my new rules. I have designed them to be simple and fast moving for the players, and so far no one seems to have experienced too much trouble. But they are proving much more work for me that I expected. The whole campaign administration is done by hand. With so many players there are a lot of emails with orders, comments and questions. I do use the computer to keep copies of the orders, and it was not too bad setting up the first battle/wargame.

But this second one involves five corps, and it took a lot of effort to coordinate all the different orders, corps status and order of march. Each had to be compared on the map to see who should take part in the battle and who not.

The players are only now finding the outcome of my labours, and it will be interesting to see whether they are happy with my decisions or not.

My main concern is the long gap for the players whilst the battle/wargame is fought. It is for this reason that I publish one move each day on the blog. This allows Jan and I enough time to fight the wargame, and for me to transfer the battle casualties back into the campaign. So the players have something to follow, and they can better understand the battles. But it is still a long time between map moves. I just hope that they can maintain their interest.

It looks like the second battle will take us up to Christmas, and there will then be a short gap as everyone will be too busy to think about a wargame campaign over the festive season. so "crunch time" will probably be delayed until the new year.

If you would like to follow the second wargame you will find it at

http://pbemhannovercampaign.blogspot.com/

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