Sunday, September 6, 2020

Confusion Now Hath Made His Masterpiece!

A Headless Body Production

VenueVirtual Table via Table Top Simulator
Players: Phil Gardocki running Anglo Irish
                  David Ray running Medieval Irish
Game System: L'Art de la Guerre, 15mm, 200 points per side.
Theme: Just passing time.

Getting used to the user interface (UI) of Table Top Simulator (TTS).  
Today, the Anglo Irish will meet their most hated foes, the Irish, with Scots Allies.

The Forces:
Anglo Irish, circa 1400 AD
Larry (competent), his brother Darryl (competent) and his other brother Darryl (also competent)
      6 Longbowmen, stakes
      2 Javelinmen
      2 Galloglaich, Heavy Swordsmen, 2HW, Elite
      2 Foot Knights, Heavy Swordsmen 2HW, Heavy Armor, Elite
      2 Billmen, Heavy Swordsmen, 2HW, Mediocre
      3 Kerns, Light Infantry, Javelins
      3 Irish Nobles, Heavy Cavalry      
      2 Irish Cavalry, Light Cavalry, Javelins
Breakpoint of 22

The lily-liver'd Medieval Irish
Led by thee mewling pottle-deep measle, Larry-boy,   Is hedge-born varlot brother Darryl-boy, and his other brother, whose natural gifts were so poor, has gone nameless.
      3 Pike Mediocre
      2 Foot Knights, Heavy Swordsmen 2HW, Heavy Armor, Elite
      4 Javelinmen
      8 Galloglaich, Heavy Swordsmen, 2H, some Elite
      2 Billmen, Heavy Swordsmen, 2HW, Mediocre
      2 Kerns, Light Infantry, Bows
      3 Kerns, Light Infantry, Javelins 
      2 Irish Cavalry, Light Cavalry, Javelins
Breakpoint of 25

The Medieval Irish are at the top.  They deploy 15 units in two commands.  Darryl-boy is included with the right most Foot Knight, erroneously labeled "FK".
Way too many Irish missing from the board.  Could it be a flank march? 

The Anglo-Irish are at the bottom of the picture.  The Other Brother Darryl has 3 horse units showing, with two longbowmen in Ambush.  Darryl has split his 8 heavy foot into two groups to maneuver around the brushy area that is Giglet's Farm.  Larry's command is set to go swimming in the marsh while his horse rides around it.

Turn 1:
Other Brother Darryl rolls 3 command points, so double marches his Longbow and single marches his horse.  He mission is to take Bald as a Babies Bottom Hill, then turn the Irish flank.  Cognizant of a possible flank march, he is keeping his horse together in case they need to turn around and intercept.
Darryl gets 4 command points, and double marches his two units.
Larry double times his longbow to the marsh.  At this point I am under the impression that it is a rough area and my shooting would not be degraded.
An ambush is revealed.  4 Clans of Galloglaich, supported by their Irish Kerns erupt from the woods.  In total keeping with Braveheart movies, but against the limits of the Ambush of 4 units!


Larry and Larry-boy meet in the center of the field to discuss this fo-pa.  We are an hour into the battle and I'm not starting over, and I am not having Dave remove 4 units either.
The battle resumes!
The Medieval Knights, Pike and Galloglaich hold their position. Only the lights move forward.

For the sake of clarity, I will often describe one side as Medieval, referring to Medieval Irish, (top of the picture and descending) and Anglo, referring to the Anglo-Irish (bottom and ascending)

Turn 2:
I am relieved the missing troops was just a mistake and not a flank march!  With few cavalry, and fewer command points, that would have been hard to deal with.
Other Brother Darryl takes the hill.  But did a piss ant job of it as the Nobles will have nothing to do save keep an eye on Javelinmen in the woods, and  Longbow won't be in range to volley next turn either.


Darryl passes the brush, and begins to pull his command together.

Larry invests the marsh with is Light Medium Infantry, and discover it is Difficult, not Rough.  Longbow shoot at a -1 there.  On the bright side, he slips a Kern behind the Irish Light Horse, preventing it's escape.  Then charges with the Irish Nobles.  But fortune favors the lights as they win by 1, the Nobles saved from disorder by their Armor.

The Medieval Irish main battle line advances.  5 elements against Darryls 6, and 4 Galloglaich approach the edge of the Marsh.  The longbow find their targets and disorder Clan McBuggerOff
The Score is Med Irish with 5 hits, Anglo-Irish with 1

Turn 3:
My plan pretty much is working out as expected.  I hold the hill with Longbow on the left, and the Marsh with Longbow on the right.  My main foot line is almost assembled to face his Pike/Knight command.
I am confident that 2HW(elite) will beat Pike(mediocre)  Especially if the Longbow in the line disorder a unit or two on the way in.
The left command continues to posture on the hill.  Which seems to have pinned down a superior force, 6 vice 8 units.  The center command gets a bit closer and adjusts, but is still not united.  The longbow on the right, sitting waist deep in the water continues to effectively volley against the Galloglaich at the marshes edge.


FYI, the periodic "Ouches" are units that took a missile hit.

On the left, the Medievalists split their forces to screen the Anglo Irish by the hill.  Freeing up 3 Elite Galloglaich to make an attack on the main Anglo battle-line.  Their center approaches to charge reach.  And in a surprise move, the Galloglaich enter the marsh to attack the Anglo-Irish LMI therein.

To which, the LMI say "Oh really?"

Turn 4:

At last, the LB on the hill have targets.  Their trek has not been for nought as they cause disorder on two units.  In the center, Billmen pass through the Longbow to take the charge, but one is disordered by thrown javelins from the Kerns.  Then we have first contact! Elite Foot Knights vs Mediocre Pike.  The overconfidence of the knights are made plain to see as their numbers begin to trip and fall before the massed pike.  
On the right, The longbow take a break and are resupplied with arrows, but their Kern screen also disorders a Medieval Galloglaich.
Nearby,  Horns sound, and Irish Nobles and Kerns charge LMI near the edge of Joilhead's farm and are nearly repulsed, their superior armor saving them.
Centers clash.  The embarrassed knights redouble their efforts, and put two hits on their attacking pikemen.  Darryl's right wing takes multiple hits from the Medieval fury.  
Deep in Preebling Marsh, the Medieval Galloglaich have had enough taunting and charge.  Slowed by the sucking mud, afflicted by the unending stench, they meander into the Anglo Kerns, and are not so much beaten, but as made more disordered by terrain.

On the far right, Larry's Kerns are charged by Medieval Javelinmen (also Kerns in this game), driving off the Anglo Supports.  But lose the dice off despite the +2 to 0 advantage.

So far, the Medievalist's have one unit killed for a total score of 10 of 25.
The Anglo score is none killed, score of 5 of 22.

Turn 5:

Men collapse everywhere, through exhaustion or death. 
In the center, Darryl's left Foot Knights destroy their pike armed foes.  But his right wing has destroyed the Billmen and Clan Jordan.

In the mangled rump-fed devil of a swamp, the Anglo Kerns adroitly flee their attackers, allowing for clean targets to be engaged down the line.  Clan's McBuggerOff, InfectedO, and O'Misbegotten all become more disordered.

On the far right, the yeasty doghearted flap-dragons of horsemen, break off laughing, and line up with their rear supports.

But the Medievalist's numbers seem endless.  More Kerns approach on the far left, javelins a throwing.  The fresh Galloglaich, mass against Darryl's left wing, placing disordering hits on Anglo Galloglaich and Billmen. 

Anglo Knights are taken in the flank by Medieval Knights who manage to hold their ground, while the the other Anglo knights rout through their friendly longbowmen.

In Preebling Marsh, Medieval Galloglaich charge.  One Anglo Javelinmen fled in response.  But this was due to Medieval Javelinmen on it's flank that could charge as well.  Medieval Clan McLilyLiverd is sent back to their mothers.  Taking their commander, whose natural gifts were so poor, has gone nameless, with them.
The score is Medieval 16 of 25, to Anglo 14 of 22

Just a note to point out the command control problems here.  Both sides only have competent commanders.  On the Medieval side the center command, the Commander is included with their Foot Knights, so this command control is limited, and he couldn't take advantage of some of the opportunities presented. 

Also, one of the Galloglaich in the marsh also contained a commander.  Which was subsequently destroyed as well. Limiting the actions of the Javelinmen in the farm to the far right.

Darryl's left command was a mix of foot and horse, and that is always a problem.  He wound up driving the Light Horse unit personally, because that seemed to be the most threat to the Medieval line.  He fought with that unit, even when it was disordered and managed to win twice because of it.

Turn 6:

The Anglo Nobles on the left take a chance, charging disordered, and as it turns out, still in the woods, Galloglaich, Clan UnLucki.  Their attack is +1 to -2, nearly destroying their foes.
In the center, Anglo Galloglaich Clan Ramsay is destroyed, the last Anglo Knights barely avoid destruction, as too one of the Longbow. Darryl's command is defeated in all but the score now.  So he joins his knights in death.  His efforts are prove significant, as the die roll was one if favor of the Medieval, and his plus made it a tie.

But in the Pribbling marsh, all the Medieval Galloglaich clans also fall.
On the far right, Irish Nobles make a charge, causing some disorder on their targets.

The score is not Medieval 22 of 25, Anglo 14 of 22
More Medieval Javelinmen emerge from the forest, but their support arrives too late and a Galloglaich is destroyed by Irish Noble Horse.

Anglo Billmen are destroyed as well, leaving Darryl's once proud main battle line with just a single Knight with 3 hits on it and a Longbowmen unit.
On the far right, the Javelinmen continue the fight against Noble horse, and disorder them further.

The score is 24 to 17.
At this point, the Medieval Irish surrendered.  Nothing was going to prevent the last point from being taken, as the Anglo's had a clear flank shot, and unimpeded command points.

If the Anglo's were aggressive, and lost all their battles on a dice off then the most they would have lost was 4 (knights in the center, taking their commander with them for 3, and HC conforming on the flank LMI emerged from the woods, where the HC had a 2-0 advantage)  more points for a 25-21 for a win anyway.  

Though there was a possible fight, depending on command points last fight in the marsh.  Javelinmen hitting Pike(mediocre) in the flank.  Pike would be -3 to Javelinmen's +1, where the best the Pike where a 6-1 dice off would be a tie.

So what went wrong?  On the left, where "Other Darryl" had dominance on turn 1, I was lackadaisical on getting position on the hill.  Not that any command points were wasted, but I should have calculated where in the hill I needed to be and angled more to achieve it.  As it was on turn 3 I was "on the hill", but out of bow range. 

In the center, I split my main battle command.  As an experiment, this command had 2 Longbowmen, stakes, in-case there were knights in my opponents force mix.  Backing up these longbowmen were 2 Heavy Swordsmen, 2HW (mediocre)  To exchange out before combat, the Longbow to then work their way to a position of flank support.  The archers only shot lights, and so were not very useful.  Only one took up flank support, and that was only at the desperate end of the battle for the center command.  In short, epic fail.  Better to have some skirmishing lights.  Which also would have prevented that gratuitous hit on my Heavy swordsmen by the enemy light.  The Anglo center lost 13-3

The center was so completely crushed, even when it had some numbers advantage, but I am going to attribute it to a spade of bad luck on contact.  

What went right?  The left command did well, tying down initially 8 units to 6, and eventually scoring 7 points to 1.  So overall, a winner.  Part of that was due directly to committing the commander to battle, twice with the LC against LI.

The center was defeated but still fighting.  Once again, Darryl was fighting in the front with his FK that kept it going. Gaining ties from what would have been losses. The Medieval FK had an included general.  Who had secured the win, but couldn't take advantage of it because his command points were limited. 

On the right, my opponent made a mistake going into the marsh.  No doubt.  My Longbow scored some lucky hits early on, which prodded him to enter.  The marsh slowed his HI to 1 UD, giving me more several turns to shoot, even at a -1.  As a result, his HI engaged at a -2 (- 1 disordered, -2 terrain) to my Javelinmens 0 and bowmen's -1.  then the luck blessed that flank, giving Larry what they took from Darryl.  For an astounding 14-3 win in points.

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