The Megagame Archive
On To Richmond
Designer(s): Peter Merritt Date:25 March 2006 Number of participants:about 30
Venue: Anerley Town Hall Quote of the Game: {Quote of The Game}
Game Description
A strategic map megagame around the operations of armied in the Shenandoah Valley.

“On to Richmond!” is a semi-fictional campaign set in early June 1863 (i.e. after Chancellorsville but before Gettysburg), where both sides are interested in the strategic possibilities to be gained from asserting full control of the disputed Shenandoah Valley region. Not only is the area agriculturally rich, its geography makes it a ‘strategic highway’ on the flank of the entire Eastern theatre. The exit in the north puts it behind the defences of Washington, Philadelphia and Baltimore whilst in the south various passes do the same to the whole Richmond ‘hub’. As elsewhere, the Union must try and bring it’s superior but unwieldy forces to bear whilst avoiding rebel traps, subterfuges and of course the New York Times! Meanwhile the South must pull together and try to reconcile full recognition of State’s Rights with National Survival!
Two levels of player-commands will be featured in the game. 'Front line' players (normally at divisional level) will have a disparate collection of brigade-sized forces (service as well as combat units) to husband along various routes against unknown opposition. This will involve really running your command, and includes managing your brigadiers, choosing an order of march as well as using meagre cavalry resources to both screen your own movements and locate the enemy - oh, and tell your colleagues! The battles will be quick, simple affairs, and overall victory will mainly come to those able to think and plan ahead, using the obscure road and limited rail networks to shift and concentrate forces at the key point of decision. Large forces take critical time to assemble, whereas detachments which are too small may be overwhelmed.

More senior commanders (roughly corps level) will have to try and co-ordinate the actions of their widely spaced forces as they implement The Great Plan, as well as build the overall intelligence picture and liase with the ‘powers that be’. The commanders’ duty will be to pierce the ‘fog of war’, and may hold the ultimate key to victory, survival – or just re-election!
However, apart from the war ALL players are driven by more than simple 'love of The Cause' - like their loyal subordinates, they tend to have an eye on the 'Bigger Picture' as represented by various goings-on with their faction back in the corridors of power in Washington or Richmond. This is where reputations, careers and not inconsiderable fortunes can be made be made or lost with a word here, a favour there, with occasional consequences for events in the field. This also makes it an ideal subject for a bunch of wargamers - you may even learn to play a neat game of Bridge, too!

© Megagame Makers 2006