Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Dux Bellorum (Duke of Battles)

Sunday morning was bright and sharp, which of course means it was Harry freezing, however Stewart managed to get over the A66 without a hitch and we marshalled our forces after a fry up to uphold the honour of both the North and Scotland. I was going with Romano-British and Stewart his Carolingian's, in War and Conquest world there is a cut off between the Dark Ages and what we call the Age of Warlords I was in the latter and Stewart the former and we fought armies suitable to each period as Jenny and Phil, especially Phil, have around 15+ armies between them.

My first game was against Jenny who was using Phil's Patrician Romans, the very army I am busy building at the moment, we had gone for 3,000 points and at that number the Romano-British can field an army for all contingencies. I went for two bodyguard units (Comitatus), two Milites and one Pedyt supported by two archer and one sling unit along with two Milites cavalry commands. I was relying on the Comitatus to do the damage as usual while the rest of the army took a 'wait and see' attitude, however, this time I was not going to throw my cavalry forward because I knew the Roman stuff was far superior and therefore they would constitute a mobile reserve.

The Patricians formed up with cavalry on the left, then the German Foederati followed by the Romans, one unit was put away out on the right to get around my flank. I had spotted the Bucellarii and put two missile units opposite them backed by cavalry, I also noticed that if I quickly shifted my troops to the right I could face them with infantry, it blocked my cavalry but freed one up to move to the left, battle commenced.

British on the left, Romans on the right.
Hun Bucellarii.
Battle about to commence.
The end draws near.
Carolingians vs Saxons.
The lines clash.
I followed my plan and although my first shots fell short, both stones and arrows my shooting picked up as the game went on and the Roman cavalry began to suffer, to alleviate this Jenny galloped her horse archers away as my infantry now confronted the Bucellarii, the horsemen were taking rising casualties from the missile troops and now the javelins of the Comitatus. I now had a dilemma, I had got my infantry into position against the cavalry but I was shooting them to pieces, why take the chance, albeit slim, that they would lose a combat, I chickened out and the Bucellarii too galloped away but there was only a handful left and thus no threat for the rest of the game. Meanwhile the infantry lines closed and javelins and darts flew through the air, on the right the main clash began as the Comitatus fought like lions around a small hill the rest of my brave boys stood rigid behind their shieldwalls. The pendulum tipped irrevocably in favour of the British and the enemy left broke, it was time to loose the cavalry, Jenny accepted defeat and we shook hands.

On the other table I had occasionally heard whoops of joy from Phil as his Saxons met the serried ranks of Carolingians, but as I turned around at the end I saw a dejected Phil also shaking hands with Stewart, the score was 2-0.

We lost no time changing tables, this time Stewart was fighting Jenny's Vikings and I was up against the Patricians with Phil as Magister Militum. I won the roll off to see who deployed first and as a gesture of good will I let him go ahead, funnily enough his army almost mirrored Jenny's deployment so I also formed up in the same old way with the same plan. I went forward and pressured the Roman left, I threw Strategy Intervention Points in to gain the upper hand and move first and when Phil did manage to win I used my 'Dux Bellorum' ability to force a reroll, which I then won, my right flank marched on while my left again went in to shieldwall and was positioned so that some Roman units would not be able to get into the fight when it came due to lack of space. I expected Phil would pull out his Bucellarii as Jenny had done but no, in they came pell mell, now we all know that the cavalry should not bowl over an elite formed up infantry unit, but there is always that sliver of fear that it will indeed happen and as it did happen to me in Peterborough last year I still had that sliver of fear.

Me on the left, Phil on the right.
The Roman left is under pressure.
The Romans collapse.
I needn't have been scared, the cavalry were halted then ran off, at the same time a unit of Foederati also headed for the rear, Phil now threw his whole infantry line at me, the results were disastrous for him as his units were either repelled or stopped in their tracks. At this point I had destroyed his two most expensive units and achieved my objective, but Phil's army was in a mess and had obviously lost the will to continue, we too shook hands. It was 3-0.

Jenny and Stewart were still locked in classic shieldwall style but the Vikings were gaining the upper hand, reduced to only one or two commands Stewart called it a day and again hands were shaken. The contest ended 3-1 for the North and Scotland, a great days wargaming and an excellent result for Clan Anderson.

Carolingians in the foreground, Vikings at the rear.

Dark Age slog.

I am now forging ahead with the new army having lost a few days over the weekend and last week, I want to have 2,000 points ready in a week to possibly take to the club, but I do have a busy week ahead so it might be a figure too far. As we now have a few interested people at the club I have proposed a small War and Conquest gaming day here at the PO in August for the guys at the club, they are a great opportunity to learn the rules and have some fun at the same time.


  1. A fine weekend of gaming you had there, splendid looking forces too. Did you feel a little agoraphobic after the terrain on Saturday?

    1. It was a good weekend and it was nice to get out into the wide open spaced on the Sunday.

  2. Nice looking game, impressive lines of battle...

    1. It does look good, I started wargaming like this and have now returned to it, skirmish etc. is all fine but this is wargaming to me.