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Being a new member of the developement and testing team, Norb asked me after our multiplay session last night to write up an AAR giving my impression of the game. Let me start with an unqualified WOW!

We played 2 scenarios last night and we had what they all said was a record number of players. 6 of us butted heads in the Wheatfield area. In the first game we played I was commanding Zook's brigade going to the relief of Sickle's Corps at the Wheatfield area. Another player commanded Cross' brigade and another played as Hancock. The other 3 players were Confederates.

When things opened we were still stationed on the lower end of Cemetary Ridge, but were soon ordered to move toward the Wheatfield and engage the Confederates in that area. Moving on the oblique we all moved towards Trostle's Wood and the Wheatfield. Shortly after my brigade had reached the upper Plum Run the Rebs were spotted in Trostle's Wood. Placing my brigade on the east side of the run, I depolyed into line and began the battle. Corss' brigade formed on my left facing the Rebs that had come up Plum Run valley from the Devil's Den area. My right was covered by those units controlled by Hancock. For 30 minutes we held the ground before the Confederates overlapping first Cross' left caused his men to fall back exposing my left. Shortly after this the player of Hancock lost his connection which caused the brigade on my left to be flanked on the right and have to fall back as well. Shortly after this I began a withdrawl as well and continued to battle the enemy. While I was chatting with the others about the fight they finally revealed to me that they had all left the game and I was fighting on my own hook. I had become so immersed in the game that I never notice that they were all gone.. Let me just sayfor that 30 minutes I forgot that I wasn't really there. The new courier system is perfect. You can call for support, report the enemy location or give  a wide choice of orders to your subordinates.

Our second game was even more immersive for someone new to the team. This time 3 of us Yanks were part of Birney's Division of Sickle's Corps in the Wheatfield area. I was playing as de Trobriand and began on the little rocky knoll on the west side of the Wheatfield facing into Roses Wood. On my left was Graham's brigade with Ward to my left rear. At the start of the battle I could see the 2nd US Sharpshooters off to the south begin the fight against Hood's boys, then I saw coming through the Rose farm a column of Confederates that extended well past my left. I then redeployed by sidestepping to the left enough that I was no longer in danger of them getting around my left as Graham moved his brigade up on my left extending from there to the Devil's Den area. In this battle we played for almost an hour before we had any problems at all except for that caused by the Confederates. In this case, they moved what looked like 3 batteries onto the lower slopes of Big Round Top on the flank of Graham's brigade and Smith's battery on Devil's Den. Slowly Graham was overwhelmed by the attacks on his front and the enfilade fire from these batteries on his left. His brigade broke one regiment at a time until my left was exposed and I was in danger of being flanked. Falling back along with Ward's brigade on my right I posted my brigade on the Wheatfield Rd and continued the fight. Here we all lost our connection with the game and things defaulted into single player. 

My impressions. Lag was so minimal that I didn't notice it when it did happen. The depiction of the battlefield was close to perfect. I only saw one error which can easily be corrected. The courier system is so far advanced from that seen in TC2M that I was in awe as to what you could do with it. Multiplayer was lag and bug free until the late in the games and with the second game I believe it even surprized Norb and the rest of the veteran crew. They mentioned that it was the first time that it didn't crash right away. Next time I will do some screenshots as we play so I can show you how things developed, as it was I was so immersed screenshots were the last thing on my mind.