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Friday, 10 May 2013

TDIC a very Roman civil war

After the Chalons battleday I thought I would have enough figures to do a Late Roman army, more fool me. When I worked it out I needed infantry, lots more infantry and some troops types like cataphracts which were not in the Chalons order of battle. So after a couple of days painting I had enough for a real army, just as I was challenged to a game by Simon Peyton, who also planned to use a Late Roman army, so the scene was set for civil war.

My army (1,000 points using figures based for Warmaster Ancients) was as follows;

General 2/2
Roman heavy cavalry unit of 4 bases
Roman light cavalry unit 3 bases
3 units of legionaries, each 3 bases of medium infantry with 3 bases of archers in rear ranks
A unit of auxila 3 bases
Two units of horse archers, 3 bases each
A unit of cataphract cavalry, 4 bases.

Simons army was very similar but he had only two units of legionaries, all legionaries (no archers), his cataphracts were only 3 bases strong and he had upgraded his heavy cavalry to steady.

We played at Worthy Games in Preston, with some of our own terrain added to the gaming table (see below).

This is the situation at the end of movement of turn 2. My own three units of legionaries are circled in blue, also I have used a unit of light cavalry (using forced movement) to box in Simons legionaries and cataphracts (circled red). At the top of the picture, the majority of my cavalry is facing off against Simons horse archers. At the bottom left, a unit of my horse archers are trying to sneak round the marsh and the wood, to get behind the enemy.


At the end of movement on the third turn. In the centre, Simons cataphracts charged my horse archers who evaded the charge and left the cataphracts facing my auxila (now occupying the hill). On both both flanks (see blue arrows) Simons light cavalry was routed by being charged and his units failing their morale checks. Also on the right of the picture, both units of Roman heavy cavalry charge. Simons cavalry is outnumbered 3 to 4, due to some shooting losses he took earlier.


A close-up of the situation in the centre. Simons legions (on the left) have expanded into battle formation three bases deep and his auxila are advancing behind his cavalry.


At the end of combat on turn four. Simons cavalry has been destroyed by the reinforcement of the cavalry melee on the right by my cataphracts (blue X marks the spot). That means that the flank of his auxila will be vulnerable to a charge by my cataphracts next turn. In the centre his cataphracts won the melee against my auxila but not sufficiently to break them. That means that the combat will continue but one of my legionary units will be able to charge onto the flank of his cataphracts in the next turn. Both of my light cavalry units have got behind his army (blue arrows at the top of the picture).


The end of the battle, at the end of turn 6. Simons cataphracts and auxila have been broken (both were charged in the flank after all) see red arrows on the left of the picture. Simons three remaining intact units are circled in red. A unit of light infantry in the wood and two units of legionaries in combat, currently holding their own but surrounded and likely to be beaten in combat. My three units of legionaries are circled in blue. My only serious loss was my heavy cavalry, reduced to half strength (white shields at top of picture) and so automatically Shaken and unable to continue the attack. The yellow dice are used to mark partial casualties on units, where the casualties have not been sufficient to remove a full base (light troop bases take 2 hits each, cavalry 3 and cataphracts/infantry 4 hits).


Simon conceded the game but not bad play for his first attempt.

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