Tuesday, October 4, 2011

The Battle of Germantown: A Class Project, pt. 1

I teach a Military History elective to high school seniors. Because of my school's history, we examine the Battle of Germantown (1777) as a case study. This year, there are twelve students in my class. One student on each side takes the role of Washington or Howe, and the other students play the roles of divisional commanders. Below is the game board I made for the game, just plywood with paint and flocking. We are looking north. Germantown Pike is the road that runs from south to north. And the Wissahickon Creek (which cuts through my school's current campus) runs up the left side of the board. Fortunately, I have a big Harkness table in my classroom which gives us ample room for the simulation.

The figures are 6mm AWI Baccus. They're a little tricky to see, but they fit nicely in a small space so we can get a whole class around the gaming table. Here is some Continental line infantry.
Below is the entire American command. Each division was assigned a card that the Commanders in Chief used for unit placement. We had read both Clausewitz and Sun Tzu, so I wanted to simulate the 'fog of war' as much as possible. Especially because the fog of war at Germantown was said to be a real pea-souper.
And here is the British Command.
I've done this simulation before, but this year I have simplified the rules, since my gamers are absolute novices. Changing formation takes a full turn, and players choose between a line and march column. Shooting forces a morale check. One failed check results in disorder. A disordered unit which fails a check is eliminated.

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