Saturday, June 27, 2009

Fiday at Nick's

Jim's Byzantines v. Nick's Crusaders - Camp Cromwell Rules.
We used the FOW FFA alternate deployment rule. This lead to a rather bland symmetrical deployment as the second player matched the first each time. The Byzantines had light cavalry on the left, infantry in the centre & heavy cavalry on the right & the Crusaders had a mirror of that. The Byzantine infantry skirmishers were in front of their foot, their horse archers on the right. Crusaders put half their infantry skirmishers on the right of their foot & the other half on their far left flank.
Fearing the superior Byzantine light troops, the Crusaders charged forward immediately on the left and centre. The Byzantine response was severely hampered by awful activation dice - no orders at all getting thru on turns 2 & 3.
In the centre, the Crusaders halted their advance to fire with bow & crossbow & actually gained a skirmisher advantage right of centre. The Byzantine counter attack was delayed by lack of activation dice, but when it happened the Varangians smashed through, but the Scutari, weakened by bowfire had a hard time of it.
The charge of the knights was met by a swarm of horse archers backed up by cataphracts on a hill. There was a complex fight between the cavalry forces. The horse archers were largely negated by the knight's armour & morale and after some complex attack & counterattack the knights got the upper hand losing 1 unit routed & one off pillaging while destroying 4 Byzantine units.
On the Byzantine left the light horse of both sides did nothing much for the entire battle as both sides had more important priorities for their limited activation dice.
The battle was finally decided in the centre. The Varangians rallied and turned to help out the Scutari, but one unti lucked out against the Crusader reserve & the other arrived too late to save enough Scutari to prevent the Byzantines failing army morale.

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