Monday 6 May 2013
Sundays game at the club
Graham supplied all the figures and the scenery. Lazy of me but there you go!
We both randomly selected our armies from about 30 that Graham has already worked out. And we went quickly into the pre-game. I love the pre-game sequence as it completely disrupts your army and gives a reality check that the forces are not at all equal. If two armies were equal and you only offered your men a 50-50 chance of coming out unscathed a lot would not be around when the battle started. So we worked through the pre-game sequence and I was to be the attacker. Graham then had to set out the scenery and I got a chance to move some of it. Bad dice rolls meant that all I could move was one hedge. Darn!
And then the luck came over to my side. Graham then had to roll to see how many of his troops would make the battle in time. The dice rolls determined that he would either lose troops from most units or they could turn up intact but late. Rolling for Each unit he started the game with only 3 units on the battlefield and the rest would arrive when they could. (One unit never did roll high enough to arrive at all despite being tested for each turn.) So I took a bravery pill and decided to act rashly! I moved everything forward at it's level of motivation as far as I could. My plan was to take the fight to him and make him react to my actions as opposed to reacting to his. The picture above shows my mad dash on the first turn. As you can see some troops were more enthusiastic than some others.
Lady luck then punished my rashness and 2 of my three commanders failed to issue order on the second turn. They were obviously distracted by something in an "Oh look pretty flowers!" moment. As this is where the plan faltered. My elite household unit was peppered by accurate longbow shot at short range making 3 of the 8 stands no longer combat effective (or dead if you are called Graham!) Graham had managed to get some more troops on the board and his left flank now had some being previously empty.
I only just motivated my left flank but not sufficiently to attack the village and its defenders. So I had to stop my attack with my other unit of Household troops and my unit of Irish Kerns, 1/2 inch shy of the village boundary. My longbow peppered Household unit was on no advance orders due to the casualties so had to suffer yet more black rain as Graham got his reinforcements into the fight and managed to bring on more. My right flank was struggling to get through the wood or in the case of my levy there failing to move at all.
So I was stalled by terrain on my right and by archery and casualties and no move orders in the centre and unenthusiastic troops on my left. Yet somehow Graham was having problems of his own and the turn swapped back to me again without him being able to deliver any crippling blows. So on my turn I managed to attack the village. This led to a rout of the troops inside and no advance orders to grahams reinforcements who were hoe shooting at my poor arrow magnets the household unit in the centre. So I took the village, and while the fighting unit reorganised themselves my Kerns swept through the buildings and fields and took one of Grahams retinue units in the flank while I managed to hold them in place with one of my retinue units. This melee was swiftly resolved in my favour just as the Irish were about to contact. So they never actually got to fight but had assisted in two melees so far and were thus still "fresh".
Graham had a unit of mounted knights who cut down my arrow ridden household without loss and left my centre hanging in the breeze as I only had some bow armed levy troops who had more brains than bravery and were more than happy to let everyone else do the work.
On my right the troops managed to get through the woods and engage Grahams foot troops in some long range arrow exchanges. My levy had just about skirted the wood and I had a retinue unit heading to support the centre section. Which meant I would have two retinue units and 2 levy units in the centre against two household units 1 retinue unit at about 2/3rds strength and Grahams last levy unit. My left flank had managed to rout everything on that side that graham commanded. And then both the game count down and time at the club ran out.
Graham worked out all the victory points and I started packing up. The write up makes this seem far more one sided than it was. Throughout the day other club members would pop over and see how we were getting on and ask "Who's winning?" To which the only answer was "If you ask him he'll say I was winning and if you ask me I would say the opposite!" Until we worked out the victory points it really was anyone's game. The result was a "Minor Victory" for me. But incredibly close. If I was being generous I could claim it was the Irish being so close to the other board edge that tipped the balance in my favour. (Scored me extra VPs for within 5 inches of the enemy base line at end of game). Having said that it could have been any of the units as they all played there part.
Overall a very good game and a Victory against Graham is always to be savoured! (Graham is a very good player with strong level of cunning and about 30 years of club experience!)
Happy May Day and next post will be Wednesday, Cheers Guys catch you all later.