Friday, 22 January 2010

Basic Impetus

Steve and I played Basic Impetus last night using our 6mm Wars of the Roses forces. It was an interesting game and the battlefield looked huge with the small forces on it. Unfortunately I did not get any pictures of the game, but I shall do so next time we play. The game went very smoothly for a first-time playing and we had few questions about the rules, although we did forget half the rules for half the game. We shall get it right next time around! What was important was that the game flowed nicely and that we both felt like we had a chance to win.

Steve's Lancastrians (boo, hiss!) were the attackers, brutally assaulting my poor, heroic Yorkists. We both deployed in proper fashion with archers to the fore and billmen/men-at-arms behind the archers. I had a unit of mounted knights on my left flank and a unit of handgunners on my right. My plan was to pin his troops in the centre with my archers while the more mobile troops went around his flanks. Steve had chosen to dismount his knights and had two units of border spears, so he had the advantage in heavy infantry, while I had more archers than he did. My left flank was on a gentle hill, while Steve's right flank was anchored on a pond.

So, the battle began. We advanced towards each other until we got to archery range, at which point we began to exchange arrows. My knights and handgunners began their move around Steve's flanks. Feeling threatened by this, Steve pushed his billmen forward too quickly. My men-at-arms and billmen charged forward to counter their advance and routed them in short order. "Ha!" thought I, "He has let himself get sucked in and will pay for that mistake." I promptly charged my heavy foot forwards and suffered the same fate as Steve had. Oops! meanwhile, his spears were marching around my flank and trying to engage my archers from the flank. They did not quite manage this and were soon suffering as they took a couple of volleys of arrows and then found that the archers were actually a match for them in the melee too. Blimey! My handgunners were now causing problems by harassing the flanks of the rest of Steve's formation, but in return my men-at-arms were getting the worst of the melee in the centre. Then my knights finally finished poncing around on the flank and charged home against Steve's archers, driving them from the field in short order. They promptly turned around and charged home against the rear of Steve's dismounted knights. Caught between two of my units, his knights chose discretion rather than valour and fled the field. Game over.

The game took around an hour and a half to play through including time spent scratching our heads wondering what the rules meant, and was very good fun. There are some gaps in the rules, but that is hardly surprising because they are a stripped out version of Impetus, but they worked well, so I would recommend them to anyone else. I also like the smallish size of the armies in the game. It makes it easier to collect several different armies, which appeals to me. The armies are larger than DBA armies and the games are slightly longer, but I preferred the game play to DBA, which is the nearest equivalent style of game I can think of. So, which army shall I put together next?

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