Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Vikings invade Pictland - a Dux Bellorum mini-report

Last week we played Dux Bellorum. We are playing again this week so I thought I should try to remember what happened and post a short report before the new game completely wipes the old one from my memory. I fielded a Viking army as Land Raiders. Steve used his new Picts. This meant we knew who would win at the outset because my Vikings are veterans of many games and newly painted figures never win their first outing, except against other newly painted figures.

I had chosen Champion's Challenge, Fanatics and Mead as strategies for my army. I also bought an extra Leadership Point. Steve had bought an extra 3 Leadership Points, but I don't think he had bought any strategies. Steve was the defender and I was the attacker. He set up the terrain as you can see below and I chose to deploy between a field and some woods, forcing him to split his army so that it could move easily in groups. My champion called his out and won, reducing Steve's Leadership Points by one as a result of being demoralised at the death of their biggest bloke.

Vikings at the bottom of the picture
There was little tactical subtlety in the battle. I began by sending my berserkers (Fanatics) off on a charge against Steve's right flank (my left). I hoped that they would disrupt his formation while the rest of my force picked apart his main body.
Berserkers to the left of me, Warriors to the right, and here I am stuck in the middle with you
The berserkers saw off a unit of skirmishers but were very quickly cut down, so I sent a unit of warriors off to delay the enemy some more. They did this rather well which surprised me.
The main body assaults the Pictish main body and is threatened by the skirmish horse from behind, Meanwhile the warriors on the left are holding up twice their own number and winning. That mead I gave them sure paid off.
My warriors actually won on the left flank while my main body, fuelled by mead proceeded to pick apart the enemy. The game ended with the Pictish general surrounded and eventually cut down. His bodyguard died with him and will be remembered in our songs.
The poor surrounded Pictish general
This was a good fun, but brutal game. We got a couple of things wrong but not too much at all. The key to winning it for me was picking the right fights in the main combat. Rolling well also helped, but it is fair to say that the mid-game was characterised by my inability to roll fives or sixes despite rolling whole buckets of dice. I'm fielding the Vikings as Saxons in the next game and shall try some different strategies this time around.

Steve got frustrated in the last game because he did so little damage to my troops, but that did not stop him from declaring what fun the rules are. I concur. I am now planning an Elven army using the Late Roman list and a Norman army based on the Romano-British list. It may well be time to find my painting mojo again.

No comments:

Post a Comment