Valley Table: The charts and tables card lists a -2 modifier for CSA initiative in the valley. But rule 20.0 (page 51) says -3 (in two places).
But at -3 there is no chance for the Union to regain valley initiative until turn 7, even if Breckinridge comes on before that. If the Union does not gain inititive in the valley before the Confederates, they must wait until turn 7. This is consistent with history. But the failures of Sigel and Hunter can't be guaranteed in wargame land!
The "x" factor here is Breckinridge, whose recall to the ANV should carry some risk to valley control for the CSA. If the CSA initiative DRM is -2 it balances the Breckinridge DRM and gives the Union one chance in six to improve their situation in the valley.
Union initiative in the valley forces the CSA to withdraw four manpower points or give the Union five victory points. Is it worth the risk (to the Confederates) for one leader and one manpower point?
Short answer: Use the DRMs on the Valley Table.
Passing: For the GCACW player there may be some ambiguity in rule 5.1 (page 11) where the word "yield" is used in reference to the initiative die-roll winner's option. Let's work out what it actually says.
The Action Phase die-roll winner has the choice of: (a) take the initiative, or (b) yield the initiative to the opponent. If (a) the die-roll winner must choose (c) or (d). If (b) the opponent must choose (c) or (d). (c) Perform an Activation Segment (d) Pass
1. A yield is not the same as a pass in LvG.
2. Only the die-roll winner can yield.
Difference between between LvG and GCACW
In LvG a pass means that player is done for the rest of the Action Cycle. This is explicit on page 12 of the rules. In other words, when a yield is followed by a pass, the passing player is done for the cycle, but the yielding player is allowed to finish activations on his own.
In GCACW a pass by the die-roll winner is merely an automatic yield, and does not preclude the die-roll winner from being able to activate units if the cycle continues. In this case, however, a yield followed by a pass is the end of the Action Cycle.
ZOC: Primary ZOC determination is by leader, not by stack. Rule 4.4 plainly says "each leader." Do not combine the Combat Values of a stack to determine the type of ZOC. For example, if you have a 3 CV leader and a 2 CV leader in the same hex, they each exert only a Secondary ZOC.
This is consistent with entrenchment, which is also per leader. Speaking of entrenchments, note that they do not count when determining whether a leader's ZOC is primary or secondary. They only apply when calculating combat odds.
ZOC Movement: The example on page 16 of the rules shows how leaders can screen the movement of other leaders through enemy ZOC (unlike GCACW).
Detachment: Here are two techniques involving detachment in an enemy ZOC. These may not be obvious, and may seem to violate the ZOC rule. But rule 19.1 says After detached leaders are placed on the map, a marching leader may continue to move.
- Before movement: A corps leader that begins a march alone in a ZOC can detach a division and use it as a screen to enter an adjacent ZOC.
- Before combat: A corps leader can create his own support by detaching a division just before attacking.
Cavalry Retreat: A cav leader can retreat the moment an active enemy infantry leader is adjacent to it, even if the active enemy leader is being "screened" by an inactive leader (allowing movement through the cav unit's ZOC). Think of it as a particularly bold recon by the cav leader!
Rule 7.7 allows cav retreats to ignore enemy ZOC. It would make sense that cavalry retreating after combat (7.6) should be able to as well.
Confederate supply sources (16.1) are Richmond, Manchester, and Petersburg, even if surrounded by entrenched Union units. A suggested house rule is to require these locations to have a clear rail line connection to either the west or south map edge to qualify as supply sources.
Race for Richmond? The 15-hex primary supply range will inhibit the Union player from trying an early-game dash for Richmond. Units at 16 or more hexes become disorganized and must roll for attrition. Disorganized units may not receive reinforcements. Union supply depots cannot move further south until the beginning of Turn 4 (Admin Cycle). Still there are some who believe that this plan is a winner.
It is essential for the Union to destroy the Virginia Central RR at some point for 6 victory points. It may seem a good object for the first three game-turns, while Union RR stations can act as supply sources without requiring a garrison. RR destruction requires a 4-strength, organized, unit to spend an entire turn in situ - either a detached infantry division, or Sheridan's built-up cavalry corps. Further south there are only a few Virginia Central RR hexes north of Hanover Junction within Primary supply range of a Rappahannock supply base.
There are three railroad lines near Petersburg that, if destroyed, provide Union VP's.
What if the Union completes RR destruction in Petersburg? Are all three RR lines destroyed? Same question for the hex just left of Petersburg - does it count for both the South Side and the Weldon?