Tom Davis and I drove up from Sheffield that morning, the car filled with my toys and with the stuff Tom needed to run his game of Kiss Me Hardy. We arrived to find the venue, Green Hammerton Village Club thronging with gamers and with the local provisions truck doing a roaring trade in proper coffee and hot sandwiches.
I set up the terrain including my new large ridge and just about managed to get everything ready in time for the 10 o'clock start of the first game.
John had allocated players to games before the day so there was no messing around sorting out who would play what - something I might adopt for future Crisis Point events.
In the first game, the El Picadillo's group of guerrillas made it to the door of the church tower and were confronted by an angry and obstructive Father Diego.
Meanwhile the contre-guerilla player bravely took advantage of the early arrival of his cavalry to push forward and try to dispute control of the village.
However, enough guerrillas had arrived to make the cavalry's attempt very risky.
Meanwhile a significant force of Liberal regulars and state militia had deployed behind the ridge.
The melee was a narrow victory for the guerrillas and the cavalry were thrown back from the village.
Meanwhile the contre-guerilla infantry and artillery tried to punch through the village. I'd forgotten to bring the cotton-wool I usually use to indicate unloaded units so we ended up using the pdf disorder markers to do the job. You can see one in front of the contre-guerilla mountain gun.
The main French force marched towards the ridge while the Republican cavalry spent ages working its way through the camp to emerge at the end nearer the church.
In this game the three units of Republican regulars had made their way up to the crest of the ridge but had been force back with heavy casualties...
The sudden appearance of the banner of the Virgen de Guadalupe restored their spirit (they lost all accumulated Shock on seeing it) and they were able to stabilise the position.
When time was called for the lunch break the Liberals were down to six points of Force Morale and weakened in numbers but the guys holding the ridge were in fine spirits. We called it a most enjoyable draw.
At lunchtime I managed to get a quick look at the other games. Richard Clarke was next door with a 1940 Chain of Command game. Belgium I think.
The Helm's Deep board was apparently build by some school kids. The new owners are developing a Lord of the Rings Sharp Practice variant!
I particularly liked this Indian Mutiny game. It's a period I might have done if I hadn't settled on the Maximilian Adventure.
John Savage's ancient adaptation of Sharp Practice looked very pretty.
Then we had Simon Walker's Trumpton Riots game using, I believe, Chain of Command with some Sharp Practice mechanisms thrown in. I'd have liked to have given this more of my attention but time flies by when you're the driver of another game...
And finally (I think; I hope I haven't missed anybody out) we had Tom Davis's action at Sao Salvador using Kiss Me Hardy, which I'd had the pleasure of play-testing a couple of weekends previously.
The afternoon session saw another group of players attempting to take the ridge near Santa Clara.
Again, the guerrillas approached the church door. Here we see them just before the arrival of Father Diego...
The contre-guerillas pushed forward their mountain gun.
While the regulars prepared for a major assault on the ridge.
A cavalry melee looked likely...
Grant (right) commanded the main French force, ably assisted by Jeremy in charge of the contre-guerillas.
In the end, the cavalry melee we'd be looking forward to didn't occur. Grant's Foreign Legion skirmishers pushed up through the woods and poured close range fire into the ranks of the Liberal lancers. A blast of canister from the hastily redeployed artillery piece then saw the Liberals driven off.
When time was called the Liberals had just managed to unfurl the banner of the Virgin from the bell tower and the French players decided that they could not hope to carry the ridge against the newly encouraged defenders. We called it a narrow Liberal victory but I suspect with a little luck a continued game might have seen the French drive their enemies' force morale down to zero.
After an hour or so of packing up followed by (non-alcoholic for me as I was driving) beers in the bar of the social club, we decamped over to the local pub for a most enjoyable evening of good food and conversation. I'll definitely be attending Ebor Lard again.