What Online Players Think of Fire and Fury


From: John Holtz (holtz@eagle.sangamon.edu)
If I'm commanding de Trobriand's brigade in the Wheat Field on July 2, 1963, I want to be playing Johnny Reb. If I'm Sickles commanding the III Corps of the Army of the Potomac (in which de Trobriand is a brigadier), I would prefer to be using Fire & Fury.

From: timsk (timsk@austin.ibm.com)
I don't play JR much at all any more - it is still the premier regimental- level ACW game, but the spectacle, feel, and speed of the brigade-level Fire'n Fury just holds more appeal for me personally, especially using the rules changes suggested in the last issue of "The Zouave".

From: jdesmond@pacsibm.org (John Desmond)
Fire & Fury is a very good set of rules. I've played it a lot, both in the second day at Gettysburg scenario and in smaller battles. It was designed to be a set of rules that would enable 8-10 people to replay Gettysburg in real time and in a managable amount of space. To do that, the brigade is the smallest unit of maneuver, all batteries of artillery are equivalent...

The main problem with using Fire & Fury for smaller battles is that a couple of extreme pairs of rolls on the Charge Combat Table can decide the game. Our usual correction for this is to use 8-sided dice for Charge Combats in smaller battles. You need a situation with at least 8-10 brigades on each side for a good game of F&F, although it is possible to scale up Johnny Reb scenarios by 'promoting everybody one rank' - replacing regiments with brigades, etc. The Fire & Fury rulebook is not easy to use in play - the binding is very fragile, and is necessary to pour over lots of verbiage to find something in the middle of a battle. It's possible to put all the essential rules on six typewritten pages - we use these 'reference sheets' that I've made up, during games, almost exclusively.

The 'Second Day at Gettysburg - Battle for the Round Tops' scenario is seriously unbalanced in favor of the Union, because of the 'perfect intelligence' factor. Gen. Meade knows what Rebel units are available, and if Lee commits all his troops, the Union can mass artillery on Cemetary Ridge, stage a 'Pickett's Charge in Reverse' and smash the Confederate center. Some form of unknown Rebel unit arrival and off-board reserve movement is necessary.

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Fire and Fury page written and maintained by: Allan Wright -- aew@unh.edu
Last update: 6 March 1995