Sunday, October 28, 2012

Plataea - the final battle for this campaign season

Good day to all. As you can see by the title, this is the last Tactica game at Mikes house for this campaign season. Due to the weather conditions (it is too cold in Mikes basement) we will not play again until next Spring.
But enough of the bad news and on to the battle!
This game was the battle of Plataea which was fought in 479BC between the Persian Empire and a coalition of Greek city states lead by Sparta. Using the Tactica rule set (as Tactica II still has not been released ), our armies are described below.
Persia - played by Mike and Bill:
16 Heavy Infantry
6 Light Infantry
2 Medium Cavalry

Greece - played by Ken and myself:
11 Heavy Infantry
6 Light Infantry
2 Medium Cavalry

As you can see the Greeks are outnumbered in heavy infantry but this is balanced by the fact that the Persians took casualties on a 4-6 on a six sided die and the Greeks took casualties on a 5-6 on a six sided die. The Persians though did have 2 large 36 man units with 24 archers in each that allowed them to reach out and touch the Greeks long before they were able to close into melee.

Here  is the initial set up. The Persians maintained a symmetrical set up and placed their two large bow units in the center with their light infantry spread evenly across their front.
The Greeks placed the Spartans on the right flank in honor of their reputation and leadership, while all their cavalry covered the left flank.
The Persians needed to destroy 6 of the Greek heavy infantry units to win while the Greeks needed to destroy 8 of the Persian heavy infantry units for them to win.

On turn one the Greeks won the initiative and passed the first move to the Persians who did little except deploy their cavalry on their right flank. The Greeks on the other hand. eager for battle, advanced across the field.

On turn two the Greeks again win the initiative and decide to keep it and take the first move.

Turn three sees the Persians win the initiative and keep the first move. They advance their archers to within range along with the light troops and deliver some very effective missile fire against the Greek center.

On turn four the Greeks win back the initiative and keep the first move to advance into melee with the Persian archers to nullify their galling fire. The Greek cavalry on their left charges their Persian counterparts and engage a what will become a slugging match with almost even exchanges of casualties. The light troops from both side engage in a lively exchange of greetings and missiles.

Turn five finds the Persians with the initiative and they keep the first move. Advancing their cavalry on their left flank the Persians are eager to get at the Spartans but a melee between some determined light infantry on that flank prevents them from getting at the Spartans. Meanwhile the Greeks keep advancing to get into melee with as many Persian units as possible hoping that their stronger units will prevail against the Persians greater numbers. The Greeks in the center have been severely mauled by the Persian archers. This turn the Greek cavalry finally wins the melee on the left flank and is now exposed to the Persian heavy infantry on that flank while being seriously hurt from the preceding melee.

On turn six the Greeks winn the initiative and keep the first move. This turn sees the first loss of units for each side. The Persians loose a large missile unit in the center while the Greeks barely hold their own in the middle also. On the Greek right flank both light units in melee finally succumb to each other and clear the way for the Spartans and the Persian cavalry to contact each other. General melees occur across the front. Third turn also sees two remarkable morale saves by the Greeks that allow them to send two of their opposing Persian units off the board. We also see the loss of the first Greek heavy infantry with many more in very bad shape.

Turn seven and eight have the Persians winning the initiative and retaining it on each turn. Alas, even though the Persians made a remarkable morale check it was not enough to stop the Greeks heavy infantry from inflicting serious losses to the Persian line. With the Greek center penetrated and Persian troops marching to the Greek rear, the Greeks snatched the victory and managed to destroy the eighth Persian heavy infantry unit to win the game.

All the players had a great time and Mike was the gracious host as always (even though he was on the loosing side). Ken as the Spartan General, did a remarkable job of inflicting damage to the Persian  line and managed to turn the Persian left flank putting the Spartans in a position to roll up their line. Both Mike and Bill had some intimidating die rolls that really had the Greeks worried for the entire game.

And again here is the eye candy we all wait for from Mikes units.

Thanks to all who stop in and good gaming.