All the pictures are from Jonathan and are used with his kind permission. I expect he took a few more reference pictures so keep an eye peeled for his own review of the game which will no doubt appear on his blog in due course. I had planned on taking a few pictures myself but the game was so intense and required so much attention the time shot past and I didn't take a single picture or screenshot! A testament I think to how good the game was.
"The Austrians, having planned to advance against the French and Sardinians to the west were surprised when the Allies jumped into action and stole a march on the Austrian Army. Having been caught off-balance, the Austrian 2nd Army primarily took up a defensive attitude around Solferino and San Cassiano. The Austrian 1st Army, with more maneuver room on the Medole Plain attempted to take the offensive. Even though the French were initially outnumbered on the plain, uncoordinated attacks by the Austrians allowed the French to fight the enemy to a standstill.The primary avenue of attack for the French was along the spine of the Solferino Heights. As the French 1st Corps attacked along the spline to the north (North Sector) and the French 4th Corp battled the Austrian 1st Army in the south (South Sector), MacMahon’s 2nd Corps remained idle, sandwiched between these to battles (Center Sector). If he turned north to aid in the attack against Solferino, he risked being flanked by the Austrian 1st Army in the South Sector. If he turned against the Austrian 1st Army to the south, he risked being attacked in the flank by the Austrian I Corps.Finally, about noon, with reinforcements arriving on the battlefield, MacMahon and the French 2nd Corps finally began moving off to engage the enemy at San Cassiano and Cavriana. MacMahon needed to engage the Austrians in the Center Sector so that I Corps could neither reinforce the battles raging on the Solferino Heights in the north nor the battles on the Medole Plain around Guidizzolo in the south.
The French goal in the Center Sector is to pin the Austrian I Corps and prevent it from reinforcing either North or South Sectors. Defeating this Corps in detail will strengthen the odds of taking the difficult heights to the north. Speed is of the essence!"