Games Expo – game 2

Game 2 – Santa Hernandad Nueva – Lawrence

After our bloodying in the morning it seems likely that we world get an easier draw in the afternoon. We drew Santa Hernandad Nuev.a I’ve played against this several time and is tricky as the list has lots of options. It can be Knight Heavy , or Foot heavy. Has that cool ‘protected’ LH (not that that worried me). The Terrain was largely inconsequential an enclosed field left of my centre (something for me to anchor on) and some open fields on the right flank. I was worried about being enveloped again and deployed neutrally again with both flanks refused. The Town and County on the right flank. The Retinue on the left. The center was clogged with the Billmen and Spearmen.

Gordon’s army was foot heavy. It consisted of something like this

8 armoured AVG off spear
8 armoured AVG off spear
8 armoured AVG def spear
4 HA SUP Knights
4 LH AVG prot JLS types
4 LH AVG prot JLS types
6 Crossbowmen
8 Swiss pikemen

There might have been some LF too – but nothing to worry about.

It seemed that the Swiss were to be the ‘hammer, flanked by KN and then the Armoured Spear – a reasonable plan. I was more relieved that it would be a straight up fight with no tricksy manoeuvring. From the right the matchups looked like, My HA Billmen VS Armoured SP. Town and County Spear Vs Swiss (MMMm). More Town and Couny Spear VS KN, and then my Superior Billmen facing off some more Armoured SP. The Defensive spear was sat opposite the closed field with was stuffed full of Longbowmen, so that looked like stalemate. So across the centre things pretty level. The Swiss would be tough and was trying to get my HA billmen in front, at least be level POA. However, that didn’t seem likely

The fights
H/Arm’d Billmen Vs Arm Off Spear (Level in the Impact , then +POA for Better Armour) Both AVG
Prot Def Spear Vs Swiss (+POA to the Swiss in impact and melee, and they are superior)
Prot Def Spear Vs H/Arm’d KN (+POA to the Spear in impact, then level in the melee. I would be OK if I could stay steady)
Arm’d Bills Vs Arm Off Spear (Level in the Impact & Melee ), but the English are superior.

Things actually went pretty well. The Poor Town and County Bowmen were facing fresh air so they advanced in a great inward swinging manner. If they could start raining down arrows on that flank that would require an reaction. They may be poor but 16 shooting bases where armour doesn’t count will hurt anyone.

In the centre the clash went my way, from the right –

The H/Arm’d Billmen started to get the upper hand. – just through better dice.
The Spearmen facing the Swiss were resolute.
The Charging KN were bounced by the steady spear. Better still they lost a base.
On the left the Superior Billmen started getting the upper hand quite quickly.

As the door was swinging on the the right flank the Spanish were trying to kick the door in in the centre.

On the left flank the defensive spear wandered a little too close and started being peppered by longbows from the field. As the spears were in 8’s and we were only getting 3 shots at long range all shots needed to force a test – unlikely!

Left of centre the superior Bills broken their opponent who routed passed the crossbowmen who were providing them with rear support. The good news was that the pursuing billmen were eager and crashed into the crossbowmen – it would get ugly for those guys.

The Spanish KNs were being whittled down and eventually broke.

The Swiss were pushing on. The spears they were fighting were valiant but gradually were losing that fight.

Next along the H/Arm’d Bills were making hard work of defeating the spearmen. It looked like it would come down to casualties. Eventually they broke, at the same time as the Swiss broke the spear. The centre of the battlefield became freeform.
On the far left the defensive spear were slowly being surrounded by more longbowmen. 3 shots became 5, then 6…. it would soon start to tell.

However, at this moment time was called. The English had won but not enough to break the opponents army. That extra 5 points would hurt my overall score.

Games Expo Game 1

Travelling to Expo.

Well Saturday morning started in glorious weather Logan and I picked up some travel sweets and headed toward the station. In the sun everything looks a bit better. Getting the venue you have to go past (with a slight diversion) of the two towers that Tolkien used as inspiration  for Orthanc and Barad-dûr .

It was worth the effort, it’s a pity that you can’t get close to the waterworks tower

(Barad-dûr I’m guessing) But a pleasant diversion nevertheless.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s a pity that next year they are changing venue to probably a more faceless NEC , but the con IS overcrowded … and would be a bit stinky but the end of the day

Saturday morning and the first game brings Paul Longmore’s Dominate Roman. Probably described as a morally bankrupt versions where all the ancillary troops are superior and the core troops are average but Paul played a pretty straight up game. His army was roughly

  • 2 TCs
  • 2 x 4 Legions (Arm Sup SSw )  + 2 LF
  • 8 x 7 Auxiliaries (Arm Avg JLS/Sw)]
  • 2 x 4 LH (Sup JLS )
  • 1 x 4 Archer (MF Sup Bow)
  • 1 x 4 poor slingers

 

I was really worried about being double enveloped, with my troops being mainly undrilled those speedy Auxiliaries could whip round the flanks. I picked 2 pieces of difficult  (vineyards) terrain to hopefully prevent this and give me an anchor. One feel far right and the other inconsequential. The other bit of terrain were a few fields that were largely irrelevant. My disposition was a refused right flanks with the town and county bow (poor) , heavy foot centre with the HvyArmoured Bills and T&C spearmen taking the forefront. The left flank was a bit hanging but I had all regular retinue bowmen to cover that gap if necessary.

My drilled Billmen were in reserve to move to where was needed. Those Legions could be a real headache to the bowmen being better armoured and the SSw cancelling my Sw. Again the Billmen wouldn’t count their HvyW against SSw. At best I could be 0 POA , worse — POA. The impact was always going to be painful.  As luck would have it the Legions were opposite the Spear, which was as good as anything else. My plan being as long as I could hold steady against the Legion then I could win elsewhere. I could risk a straight up fight against the Aux as generally I would be Sup or have a better POA. The longbows are reasonable too as his armour is negated by the Longbow and being AVG and in 4’s with only 2 TCs to cover the army I might get some joy.

The game shaped up reasonably. His LH advanced on the wings. But as I’d deployed tightly giving not trying to fill the table I wasn’t worried. Paul pressed on his right with the 2 legions and 2 Aux , echeloning back with Aux into the vineyard. He didn’t want to mix it with the Hvy Armoured Bills. On his far left 2 Aux and 1 LH skirted around the edge towards the Poor bow (who were happily ensconced in a closed field). The English pushed forward in the centre but not so much as to overstretch.

It looked like the main crunch would come left of centre. Roman LH and a couple of spare units were creeping round my far left , so the spearmen had to advance to 3” just to give Paul the problem of his shock troops potentially charging without orders, while the more cautious Auxiliaries would be left behind.

My HvyArmed Billmens pushed on further still  , now that the Legions were occupied found renewed vigour.

 

Given the choice of 2 rolls of 7 or more to avoid his Legions going in spontaneously all the Romans charged, before he could work the flank properly. I committed a general to each spearman unit and had rear supports for both. There were 2 identical fights. 1 spearmen + Gen unit VS 1 Legion and 1 Aux. The Romans had no general to commit. The impact was dicey , Impact foot (Legion on +POA), everyone else on net 0 POA.

 

 

 

 

 

 

So

Romans

  • 4 dice needing 4,5,6s – re-rolling 1’s  (2.3 hits)
  • 4 dice needing 4,5,6s                          (2 hits)

English Spearmen

  • 4 dice needing 5,6s – re-rolling 1’s     (1.9 hits)
  • 4 dice needing 4,5,6s – re-rolling 1’s   (2.3 hits)

We lost both impacts through poor dice. However, with generals and rear support held steady – Phew, that was the biggy. As steady spear the roman Sw wouldn’t count. Successive melee would at –

Romans

  • 4 dice needing 4,5,6s – re-rolling 1’s  (2.3 hits)
  • 4 dice needing 4,5,6s            (2 hits)

 

English Spearmen

  • 4 dice needing 4,5,6s – re-rolling 1’s   (2.3 hits)
  • 4 dice needing 4,5,6s – re-rolling 1’s   (2.3 hits)

So, we had a slight edge. However this would be mitigated by 2 units onto 1 for casualties – so it was tight.

How it panned out…

The leftmost unit held on steady , however, kept taking casualties meaning the Romans started getting a further advantage by the spear losing their POA where only in a single rank. Once we had lost 2 bases the writing was on the wall. The rightmost did better. The Auxiliary unit they were fighting lost and dropped cohesion. Even the Legions dropped (but soon were rallied).  Eventually the Aux fragged and broke. Just about the same time as my left spear broke, not by cohesion but by base losses.  To make matters worse one of my generals was killed on a double six L

My left flank started to collapse.  The troops behind were a bit too close. Archers were caught by Legion (it would be curtains for those guys)

Right of centre things were a bit better, where the Auxiliary had routed some billmen crashed into more Auxiliary behind. This combat was joined by the HvyArm’d Billmen. I’d been reluctantly drawn into the vineyard with my Hvy Foot hopping that my extra armour would help. Howwever, the Hvy foot were severely disordered (thus losing 1 per 2 dice). The Aux were disordered 1 per 3 too, but it just seemed to be the edge that made a difference.

On my far right was an interesting matchup. I had 16 (8×2) poor longbow Vs 8 (4×2) Avg Auxiliary ( +1 LH lurking). Hitting on 4s (armour not counting) and re-rolling 6 (for poor) One unit became disrupted (as its was close the table edge too). But the other Aux unit charged in steady. So it 16 Longbowmen Vs 4 Auxiliary as he charged to contact both units. Better to fight than be shot to death I guess.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The fight

Impact

Romans

  • 2 dice needing 4,5,6s           (1 hits)
  • 2 dice needing 4,5,6s           (1 hits)

English Longbowmen

  • 3 dice needing 5,6s – re-rolling 6’s     (.9~ hits)
  • 3 dice needing 5,6s – re-rolling 6’s     (.9~ hits)

One Longbow disrupted, the other stayed steady. It then settled down to

Melee

Romans

  • 2 dice needing 4,5,6s           (1 hits)
  • 2 dice needing 4,5,6s           (1 hits)

English Longbowmen

  • 4 dice needing 5,6s – re-rolling 6’s     (1.1~ hits)
  • 3 dice needing 5,6s – re-rolling 6’s     (.9~ hits)

Even a general to avoid the re-rolls couldn’t help me.

However, elsewhere things were getting from bad to worse. The 2nd spear unit had broken. The longbow behind were going. Another longbow was being ganged up on. I was about 8 attrition out of 11, for the loss of 4 out of 14 for the Romans. Another turn or two later and it was all over. 

Post Mortem.

Its hard fighting the Romans as they have so many more units. If the fight takes a turn for the worse they then have the manoeuvrability to skedaddle to safety. The undrilled nature of my army really mean they couldn’t keep up and the BG loss was proportionately worse for my army. Paul fought a pretty straightforward game, and I thought he could have made it a lot worse for me with some tricksy manoeuvring. The superior light troops were actually useless in this game as the Romans didn’t want to get into a shooting war. The game was fought in a pleasant spirit and even losing wasn’t a ruinous experience

 

 

Games Expo runners and riders

Well here are the runners and riders

What do I think?  Well normally I’d be taking a lot of heavy infantry so I’d be holding my head given the amount of cavalry here

My gut feeling is its not so bad. 3 Swiss…  but I’m not overly worried. (:-0 read the blog  when we fought the Swiss with the Ikko Ikki!

Romans will cause us pain if they have the usual Sup Armoured SSw (why would you not). I forsee some –POAs against the longbowmen

There a quite a few Cav armies so hopefully we can give them a peppering. My overall thought is that all of these are quite manouevrable, whereas our undrilled plodders will have to watch hopelessly as the enemy skirts the flanks

 

 

 

Games Expo – Army of Henry Percy

With Games Expo just a over a week away thoughts came to picking any army.

http://www.ukgamesexpo.co.uk/

I normally just let Logan pick from all the armies and we go with that, and this year was no exception. Last year it was all Egyptians… but now with the country gripped with perceived patriotism he wanted to used something ‘English’.

So we settled on the army of Henry Percy and his son Harry ‘Hotspur’. From around the time of the Battle of Humbleton Hill

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As recounted by Shakespeare –

“Here is a dear, a true industrious friend,  Sir Walter Blunt, new lighted from his horse.  Stain’d with the variation of each soil  Betwixt that Holmedon and this seat of ours;  And he hath brought us smooth and welcome news.  The Earl of Douglas is discomfited:  Ten thousand bold Scots, two and twenty knights,  Balk’d in their own blood did Sir Walter see  On Holmedon’s plains. Of prisoners, Hotspur took  Mordake the Earl of Fife, and eldest son  To beaten Douglas; and the Earl of Athol,  Of Murray, Angus, and Menteith:  And is not this an honourable spoil?  A gallant prize? ha, cousin, is it not? “—Shakespeare, Henry IV, part 1, act 1, scene 1.

From a FoG point of view Games Expo is a 650 pt competition. So here is the list.

Not as many longbowmen as on the continent, but we have a reasonable amount of stout infantrymen. Shire spearmen and a range of billmen.

Personalities we have are –

Henry Percy

Harry Hotspur

Earl of Douglas

And the rank and file

 

I predict a riot! – The Ikko Ikki

As a bit of background. I’ve been playing competitive wargaming for about 20 years. Starting with 6th (for a couple of year), then a massive run of DBM (from 1.0 to 3.1) for about 10 years. Then moved to Field of Glory : Ancient and Medieval in about 2006/7 (when it was still called ‘The Art of War’)… Had about 5 years of that. With FoG v2 in beta, I can’t face going through all that again! If for no other reason than having to print out 100+ pages of rules every few weeks. With that in mind and with the release of FoG Renaissance I thought I’d take a sabbatical from the ‘Ancients’ and have go at that.

This really started in 2011 when I played FoG Renaissance at Britcon (not counting the playtest competition at Britcon in 2010) . For 2012 I intend to follow that trend and will play FoG:R at Godendag, Badcon, Attack, Britcon and Warfare. I think I’ll end up doing FoG:AM at Games Expo ,and Staffordshire Swords as its the 650 (small table) format which I really like.

As for winning and losing I’m not so bothered anymore. I had the competitive streak exercised from me many years ago. Won Britcon in 2001 & 2002 (back in the DBM days)… Joining the Burton and District club about 10 years ago helped that with their catholic approach to periods , scales and systems.

Anyway…. back to 2012. With a Godendag ahead and looking at the offered period (Italian Wars +/-, with no geographical context) , and with Badcon running the same I decided to paint up a new army specifically for that. I had started painting up a Korean army – for the Imjin wars, as a few club members were painting/or had Samurai. So, my first thought was to run with that. However, after looking at the dates and options of the list the Korean looked distinctly ‘D’ class. While I’m not too worried about winning, I don’t want weekends of being the ‘competition punch bag’. I didn’t really fancy any of the Western armies and settled on Ikko Ikki (Japanese peasant revolts of the C16th). The FoG:R seemed to be generous in their classification, and while having glaring weaknesses , it does has a resilience. I like horde armies so it seemed to be a goer.

The obvious choice for collecting (some might say for Renaissance Japanese is Two Dragons). Now I like Two Dragons, and have large Dark Age collections of theirs. But.. they are just a little too hard to get hold of now and little too pricey, and the final nail in the coffin is that the last figures I bought were very ‘flashy’ and the mould looked worn. So, looking further afield I had a choice from Old Glory, Lancashire, Essex , Peter Pig. I ended up with Peter Pig, the casting were newish, a domestic product and had a large range including specific figures for the Ikko Ikki. Also with great timing it was just before the Reading show so I got a show collection discount!

With list constructed and order made I collected the figures on 20th November.

 

They were completed by Jan 1st