Sunday, July 14, 2013

Seleucids vs Ptolemy the battle of Raphia

We had another exciting game at Mikes house yesterday and a fun time was had by all. we had the perfect number of gamers for this event. Six in all. Mike, our host, Wendel and Ken who were the generals for the forces of Ptolemy. And Bill, Larry and myself who were the generals for the Seleucid army.

I would like to note that this game was inspired by 'The Big Red Bat' and historical events on or about 22 June 217B.C.

Here are the armies in their initial deployment.
 The picture above shows the Seleucid army on the left and the Ptolemaic army on the right. The picture below, show the setup from the other end of the battlefield.

The Ptolemaic forces were going to crush both Seleucid flanks and roll up the center from each end. The Seleucid generals were planing to smash the Ptolemaic left flank and then roll up their main line while fighting a delaying action on their left.

the three pictures below show the initial move withe the Seleucid army at the bottom and moving from their left flank to the right. Note that at this time each side is initiating their plans. There is movement on all flanks but very little if any activity in the center.

Over the next two turns, a kind of stand off developed on the Seleucid left flank while massive cavalry actions were happening on their right flank.

 You can see the amount of resources committed by each side in these pictures. In the foreground you have Ptolemaic light cavalry vs Seleucid heavy cavalry. in the middle we see two units of medium infantry engaged withe elephants supporting the Ptolemaic unit. And in the upper right there is again heavy cavalry vs light cavalry but with infantry support.

 Please note that the dice behind the units represent casualties. In the above picture the troops in white in the foreground are near the point where they will need to make a moral check. Just two more casualties will do it.

The result of this epic conflict was the Seleucid units smashing all opposition and clearing their right flank, just as planned.

 Meanwhile on the left, the Seleucid elephants drive into the Ptolemaic cavalry.

 Sadly the elephant attack was easily beaten off by the heavy cavalry.
But eventually the Seleucid's prevented the Ptolemaic army from wining on this flank also but at a great loss.

 Now was the time for the decisive move! With both flanks destroyed or damaged, the Ptolemaic army knew they could only win if they could defeat the Seleucid's in a frontal attack. The Seleucid commanders had been very cunning and held back their heavy infantry, waiting for the flanks to fail so they could launch a powerful attack in the center while enveloping one flank or the other.

In the ensuing melee, lasting over many turns, the Seleucid's were slowly but surely beating down their Ptolemaic rivals. Unit after unit of Ptolemaic heavy infantry retreat from the battle. But in the final turn when all seemed lost, Mike rides up to his troops and joins in the fight. Better to die a hero that to return home in defeat. Encouraged by their leaders bravery and strength, the troops manage to turn the tables and snatch victory from the jaws of defeat!

Thanks to Mike and also to all who attended this game and helped to make it another special event. And as always, I have more pictures of Mikes wonderful figures.

Impressive is it not?
Good gaming.