093F - Dec. 17 Rebel Attack v.2
Why Should You Play This Scenario?
This battle is actually a fairly amusing scenario if you step back and examine it. To begin with, it isn't as simple as you might think by looking at the numbers alone. A capable/sneaky Federal opponent could cause you lots of problems. The Federals can also play it extremely safe and fall back north of the Rappahannock which would then have the game turn into an artillery duel as the Yanks dare the Rebs to try and cross the river.
If you are looking for something a little different where you have no other options than to attack, here you go. This is also a fun one against the A/I for what that's worth.
While the initial setup favors the Yankees, the overall statistics favor the Rebels. Let's take a better look at this.
The Confederates have a large advantage in unit quality. The Federals have few reliable units that they can count on in a large battle.
With more overall men, a much higher overall quality rating, and even more units to move, there is no doubt that the advantage here is in the Confederates favor.
Although the Rebels have 145 total guns, this includes 28 6lbr. Smoothbore pieces with limited range and power. The Federals have far superior range and power in most cases.
While the overall numbers are relatively close, the Federals still have more guns, more ammo, and better weaponry.
Both sides have plenty of ammunition for this battle. Fire away at will from start to finish.
Both sides have solid leadership overall. Surprisingly so. But with Lee, Longstreet, and Jackson being at the top of the Rebel pyramid and Sumner and Sigel at the top of the Union pyramid, I have to give the edge to the Rebels.
The December 17 - 18 Battle of Fredericksburg begins with the Union army in a position around the town itself and occupying Marye's Heights above it. The Second Corps holds the best ground while the Ninth Corps holds the much more vulnerable and untenable left flank.
The reinforcements for both sides begin to arrive early on day two. The Federals will receive theirs from north of the Rappahannock River and the Confederates from the south. There are numerous river crossings that the two sides can utilize along the river.
For the Rebels the battle is a simple Meeting Engagement where their forces all begin off of the map. But for the Federals it is more difficult. The Second Corps is well-placed on good ground and can hold their own against the initial Confederate attacks. But the Ninth Corps is horribly placed with their flank in the air and their backs to a river. A tough way to start a battle.
This battle is an interesting one if you are playing an above average Union opponent. They have numerous options as to whether to fall back on Fredericksburg at once, fight at Marye's Heights, fall back over the Rappahannock River and dare you to cross, or some other unforeseen tactic. A poor Union opponent will probably be defeated here by midday on the first day of battle. But a quality opponent may hold for day one and then make two much more interesting. Still, it is a harder battle for the Federals with their poorer quality infantry. Their best hope is to utilize every possible modifier they can in order to even the odds.
1) Crush the Ninth Corps.
This should be obvious. The Ninth Corps is in a bad position and if they don't fall back to join with the Second Corps than you can likely pin them against the river and destroy the corps.
2) Watch out for the Union Artillery.
The Federals have some powerful guns and are in possession of commanding high ground. They will take large chunks out of your formations if you get too close. Try to neutralize them as quickly as possible.
3) End it on Day One.
Go for the kill on the first day. If you can break them then they will likely surrender the scenario early on. Even if you fail on day one, you will have two large divisions coming on day two who can likely finish the job.
This one is probably more fun than us than for them. But if you can find a Yankee to play it then I hope you both have fun. I've played it a few times and enjoyed it (once as the Yankees).