Sunday, April 21, 2019

You say Gyro, I say Gyro

A Headless Body Production

Location:  Allen Kaplan's Man Cave
Event:        Kaplicon, 2nd Round
Players:     Philip Gardocki playing Hellenistic Greek
                      John Doe playing Assyrian

Game System: L'Art de la Guerre, about 200 points per side.

The Title: Greeks  pronounce Gyro as Year-Row, while the Assyrians (or their descendants, work with me here) pronounce it Gi-Row.

The Forces:
The Achaean League, Commanders Critolaus (competent), Diaeus (competent and a real name!) and Diaeus (also competent and a real name).
     10 Pike, 4 Mediocre
       4 Hoplites, Heavy Infantry, Spear
       4 Light Infantry Bow
       2 Horsemen, Heavy Cavalry, impact
       4 Light Cavalry, Javelin
       Break point 24

The Assyrian records are engraved in cuneiform tablets, and unreadable to civilized men. The best guess is that the commanders are Tudiya, Yangi and Harsu.

      4 Heavy Chariots.
      6 Asharittu Warriors, Medium Sword, Impact and Elite

      2 Aramean Javelinmen
      4 Light Chariots.
      3 Light Infantry
      1 Pethalle Medium Cavalry
      1 Light Cavalry
       Break point 21

The Assyrians win the initiative and elect to attack the Greeks in the plains.

Tudiya commands a small strike command on their right.
Yangi leads a large force of foot in the center.
Straight out of the box, Harsu leads a large force of chariots.
I have to question the idea of putting the Light Chariots (which moves 4UD/turn) to the left of the infantry, then the Heavy Chariots (moving at 3UD/turn) to their left.  If your foes are frontal, that's OK, but if you have to sweep right, then your slower unit is on the outside of the arc of travel.

 Looking at the pictures, I really did not appreciate the attractiveness of all those Chariots on the field. 

The plan is simple.  Dominate the left with my impact cavalry, so when the pike engage the enemy foot, I should have the cavalry ready for flank charge in support.

My pike is not elite, but otherwise out numbers and out guns the Assyrian foot.

The only concern is the strong chariot force that can go after the flanks of Diaeus's mediocre pike block.
Turn 1:
The Assyrian strike command rolls a 1 for command points and only advances a little bit.

The center command rolls a lot of command points, but it still takes 4 of them just to move everyone forward.

The Assyrian left advances as fast it can, but it is in 3 groups, so that is not much.
No plan survives contact with the enemy.  And in this case, deployment.  My Heavy Cavalry is not a good match against the Heavy Chariots. Taking advantage of the slow chariot advance, Diaeus pulls his horse out of the line and races behind the pike block. 
Sometimes this type of redeployment works well, sometimes not. But I rather fight the chariots in the fields on the right side of the board, then in the clear on the left.

The pikemen oblique march left to cover their flanks against the river.
Diaeus marches in lock step with Critolaus pike  His Hoplites are prepared to make a facing move to fend off the chariots.  The field does a number on wheeled vehicles, and so I think the Light Infantry in there can hold off the chariots for a while.

Turn 2:
Tudiya does not like the matchup of Chariots on Pike, and decide to redeploy as well.
A halt is called for his foot command.
Giving his Chariot command a chance to flank my smaller pike command.
Undeterred, Critolaus continues his advance.  But it will be many turns before contact at this rate.
The Hoplites charge the Light Chariots.  One of them high tails it and runs.
Turn 3:
Over the the river Ganges, a much more interesting battle is happening.

It's Chinese vs. Burmese.  And they are well into the game.
And across the other river we have Legio X vs the Maccabees.  Judging from the casualty markers, things are heating up there as well.
Back to our show.  The Assyrian Chariot command decided to return to it's original position. 

Their infantry command splits in twain, probably due to a shortage of command points.  They are going to pin my smaller pike block in place while his Chariots focuses on a single Hoplite.
The Score is 1-1.

The Greek main pike block is closing the gap, but unless the Assyrians give them some help, it will be two more turns before contact.
Diaeus wheels his pike to prevent easy flanking, and attempts to rally his Hoplites.  His other Hoplites pull up to cover the disordered units flank.  In the field, the ambushes have been revealed to be phonies, but there is still the Light Infantry to be considered. 
So if he wants Diaeus's pike block's flank, he will have to deal with 3 sets of flank guards.

Turn 4:
The Chariots pull a 180 and leave.
Assyrian foot charge!  They win 3 of fights.
Critolau's Pike split up.  3 units to chase the chariots, which are running up to a field covered hill, and thus slowed. 
The rest to face the remaining Assyrian foot.   
Oh, and after taking his morning tea, Diaeus decides to show up for the fight with his Heavy Cavalry.  This is timely, as Diaeus's Pike score a win destroying an Assyrian Swordsmen, while the rest of the Pike hold their ground.
On the far right, the Hoplites are holding but cracking.  The Lights in the field are frustrating the attempts of the Assyrian Heavies to participate in this fight.  That's a win when 8 points of troops hold down 28.
Turn 5:
The Greeks have 5 points towards their demoralization level of 22
The Assyrians have 6 points towards their demoralization level of 21

It looks like the Chariots will get away. 
One of the Pikemen (mediocre) falls!
So to, a Light Chariot is destroyed.  But another has slipped through the cracks to run in the Greek rear.  But it has been met by Light Horse.
Critolaus's Pike charge, the Aramean Javelinmen, being from a conquered province anyway, leaves the Asharittu Warriors to their fate.  One of the swordsmen is the included general, Yangi.
Chaos rules on the right flank.  But the advantage is to the Greeks.  The one destroyed Pike turned out to be a blessing giving Impact Cavalry a clear, supported shot on a Medium Swordsmen. 

A Mexican Standoff with lights.
The Greeks have 7 points towards their demoralization level of 22
The Assyrians have 12 points towards their demoralization level of 21

Turn 6:
The game clock is winding down.

This grind continues.
Surrounded the Assyrian Chariot may be, but it is with all lights, and that doesn't stop it from turning and hitting a Hoplite in the rear.
The Greeks have 8 points towards their demoralization level of 22
The Assyrians have 14 points towards their demoralization level of 21

It is the bottom of the last turn.  With the help of a flanking Cavalry, Critolaus plows under a pair of Asharittu Warriors
The Greeks have 8 points towards their demoralization level of 22
The Assyrians have 14 points towards their demoralization level of 21

Diaeus completes his collection on the set of Asharittu!  His remaining Hoplite flanks a light chariot, breaking it, which disorders a Heavy Chariot.  The Light Chariot that showed all the spunk, is now charged in the rear, and is disordered.
With that, the game was declared over on time.

The Greeks have 8 points towards their demoralization level of 22
The Assyrians have 19 points towards their demoralization level of 21

It was a good game.  Lots of thinking and maneuvering.

The Assyrian did a good job of screening off my best command, which only managed to cause 6 points of damage to the Assyrian demoralization level. 1 extra for an included general, and that was with assistance with the cavalry command.  

The Cavalry command redeployment can be regarded as a success.  It arrived in the center just when the smaller pike block was cracking, and destroyed one warrior, and ran off the supporting Light Infantry.  Then turned the flank of Yangi's personal unit, killing him.  It's lights ran some interference controlling the penetration by chariots on the right flank, and had it not been there the camp could have been lost.  So the cavalry command can be accredited with 5 points and two saves.

The right hand command, some 4 mediocre pike and 2 Hoplites gets the most credit.  Taking on a command and a half, and scoring 11 points of the 19.  It was frontally engaged with the pike, while the Hoplites provided flank guards.  All in all, this command worked as designed. 

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