Last week I played Matt with the same two armies and Barry took the Macedonians so I got my old Persians to play again. This time though I wanted to take advantage of the lessons from the first game and loaded one flank with all my cavalry.
Barry on the left with all his best cavalry on his left flank facing all my cavalry whilst his right just had javelin armed light hos. His centre was the three pike blocks screened with Cretan archers and Agrianian javelin and light spear armed light foot. I had facing these skirmish forces my Persian slingers and bow with my Crescent Shields to the left of these. My Hoplites were behind the mass of Cavalry on my right. W had a bit better luck with the terrain this game. Barry had two gentle hills, mine was steep but the light foot love that. We also had two vineyards in play to the bottom of the picture above.
|Barries's Phalanx of Pike.|
I knew I did not want to come face to face with the big blocks in the centre. Barry knew he wanted me too, so gave them a leader to give double moves and at least get them to threaten me late in the game.
|New Player Mistake!|
This was the first game of FoG for Barry so mistakes are expected but when it came it was both very large and NOT made by Barry. Not sure what I was thinking but I allowed myself to get in a position were my evading lights burst through my Cavalry Disrupting two units. Not at all clever!
After two turns we were closing the skirmishers for a battle in the centre whilst Barry moved his light horse around the nearest vineyard whilst the cavalry flank was heading for a major clash. Neither did I feel I had the better chance due to Barry having better troops, though in both cases I had the greater number.
|Flanking Lights as my Crescent Shields hurry to close with the Cretans.|
The Vineyard was tough to get around allowing my nearest unit to get forward of the chase. I would though have been better to turn to face him and try to close with them as I would win any melee. As it was I just moved them closer to he pike.
|Cretans engaged in melee facing the Crescent Shields.|
I lost the Impact phase against the Agrianian Javelins but drew against the Cretans who had intercepted my original charge. On the flank the cavalry charge was inconclusive as Barry only got to charge in two units and mine stood up to the charge. I passed the required cohesion test and as the standard melee rounds took place my greater numbers started to count. If we both lost a base I would still be over 75% whilst Barry would suffer the -1 for having already lost 25% in following cohesion tests. The skirmish line was first to buckle as it went from Disrupted to Fragmented. Whilst I was winning the melee rounds against the Companion Cavalry Barry kept passing cohesion test after test and only taking casualties when he needed to roll above 1 on a D6!
|Fragmented the lights would soon be routed and disappear behind steady files of pike.|
With the reduced dice in combat the skirmishers were soon put to rout but this would only leave me open to abuse from the pike behind. Fortunately Barry was not able to contact my skirmishers so they were happy just to harrass the pike with little hope of doing any harm.
|Quantity V Quality|
The weakness of the Companions is the size of the units. Four bases against my Persian six. If I am not disrupted in the Impact phase the Companions can find themselves steadily overwhelmed as was starting to happen here. I had charged the Companions and the Agema knowing I was not likely to win in a turn but hoped to still be in on it after a couple of turns as that should allow me to win. Sure enough I was chipping away at the Companions at the same rate they were reducing me, only I had 4 more bases to loose than Barry.
|My Left Flank|
Barry was still trying to brig his lights into the fight but now he looked to be able to get a reward for his patience as my lights would soon be caught between the poke and his light cavalry. Only a dash for the vineyard looked to be an option.
|Right Flank becoming fluid.|
I finally broke the inside companion unit and caught it whilst pursuing which removed it from the board. The Agema flanking it shrugged off the cohesion test for seeing a friend routed despite losing 25% of it's strength to missile fire.I charged the re-ordered Persian Cavalry unit into the Agema and other Companion unit but suffered a level of Disruption on losing the melee. Meanwhile my Bactrian bow armed cavalry was forced to evade his Lance armed lights but these then turned round and Disrupted the lancers with a well timed volley of arrows.
|Failing to take cover.|
My slingers was looking to be routed within a turn or two as they were sure to be caught between the light cavalry and the white pike. I was hoping the Crescent Shields would get round the pike and go after the baggage as Barry just would not have the speed to catch up. Though I needed to keep the Cretans going backwards to manage this.
|Trapped and disrupted.|
Barry charging his Prodromoi against my bow cavalry had carried them beyond their own lines and put them in danger of retaliation. Being disrupted they could only suffer if charged. We ended the game here on Barries' turn, he would have had to either turn round and move back or charge. Either way if I was to have another turn he would face a charge that on evading he would be forced off board.
Both of Barries' units are held in melee so he would not be able to charge my cavalry without routing my cavalry. Whilst I was disrupted it was a tall order to do this in just one more turn. In my turn I planned to use one of the just released cavalry to wheel and take up position to his rear to charge in my next turn. Meanwhile my disrupted unit would charge from the front. The last unit I planned also to make for the camp to guarantee it's capture.
Though it looked to be a probable victory for me it was still possible that Barry could win the cavalry battle, though more likely he would loose but not before doing me some serious harm. The chance to do much more damage was fairly limited and my camp was safe. I minor win for me I think but a major win for both of us as Barry enjoyed the game and would be happy to play some more.
Other rules. we still have our Impetus armies but as mentioned before Barry bought a copy of War & Conquest and we really need to play this as well, though both of us are leaning towards taking some of the ideas and scrapping the dice heavy combat system. Though we really must try it before junking a big part of the rules. It just tastes like GW though, and that is not a compliment!