A Visual Approch to Learning SPI's TSS/GBACW System











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Russ Gifford's TSS/GBACW discussion pages
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Joe Beard's SPI Analysis pages  Click here




 The Terrible Swift Sword  / Great Battles of the American Civil War is a great system. In use over 40 years, the original system still has its adherents, and I am one of them.

"Learning the Great Battles of the American Civil War."

Everyone does videos now - but when I built these, it was all new.

My ASL training sessions are still in demand.

But I think this set for GBACW / TSS are better!

bulletYou can watch and hear them. Click the Movie link!
bulletOr skip the video with the PDF link! Just read the slides!

Skip to the session you want! Jump ahead in the video, or repeat a missed concept!


STREAMING VIDEO of the original lessons now available! (Use the Movie Link)

Training Sessions -

bullet0. Introduction PDF Link                                                                         Movie Link
Overview of the Great Battles series of games.
bullet1. Sequence of Play PDF Link                                                                  Movie Link
Step-by-step discussion of Sequence of Play.

2. Units & Formations PDF Link                                                            Movie Link
Outlines the combat units (Infantry, Cavalry, Artillery) and their different formations.


3. Facing & Zones of Control PDF Link                                                Movie Link
Explains facing for different units and formations, and their ZOCs.


4. Command & Leadership PDF Link                                                   Movie Link
Detailed review of the Leaders and the structure of command in the GBACW.


5. Movement PDF Link                                                                               Movie Link
A look at movement, formations and terrain in TSS/GBACW.


6. Line of Sight PDF Link                                                                           Movie Link
Terrain and sighting, plus a discussion of how heights work.


7. Fire Combat PDF Link                                                                           Movie Link
Arms, ranges and the effects of facing, formation and terrain.


8. Melee PDF Link                                                                                        Movie Link
How it works, retreat before melee and the results.


9. Final Items PDF Link                                                                             Movie Link
Leader replacement, ammo supply and other details.

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  Examples of Play, Using Cedar Mountain

bullet1. Cedar Mountain, Getting Started! PDF Link                                  Movie Link
Step-by-step discussion of setting up Cedar Mountain. Exclusive Rules, Victory Conditions

2. Cedar Mountain, Examples of Play! PDF_Link                             Movie Link
Examples of movement and Formations.


3. Cedar Mountain, Examples of Combat PDF Link                         No Link Yet
Examples of Command Phase, moving in Column on Roads, Moving onto the Board.


4. Cedar Mountain, Examples of Combat PDF Link                         Movie Link
Examples of Firepower and Weapon Types, Arty, and Melee.



1. Cedar Mountain Strategy PDF Link


2. Cedar Mountain Tactics  PDF Link    using Arty and Cavalry      VASSAL LOG  (see book)



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GBACW: Fire/Melee Chart , Rout ChartQuick Reference Card,

TSS 2: Pinned/Ammo/Cmd chart, Rout ChartFire/Melee charts , Quick Reference Card

Lots more free downloads - use the link below! And check out the discussions on GBACW Tactics!

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Other helpful GBACW tools - player aids, scenario cards, and more   Free GBACW Stuff!  

Discussions of GBACW rules and tactics  Tactics Menu Page

Want to add your thoughts? Click here!

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This site was last updated 12/18/22