SAGA, Vikings vs. Welsh

24 Sep

I know this blog has been a bit quiet lately. The reason for this were a number of birthday parties I had to attend, so I did not get as much time playing in over the last month. The other reason is that I have a unit of Prussian Landwehr Cavalry on my table. While not big (=they should have been finished in no time) they are still taking me ages. The reason being, that I strained my back (dislocated disk) and as strange as it sounds, while I could sit without pain, my hands were a bit shaky so painting anything other than basic colours had been out of the question until last week. So the pace should pick up soon.

Bespoke unit of Landwehr should be done this week and I will have to finish the Napoleon base this week as well to meet the La Bricole deadline. I just hope that the basing material arrives in time! And to remedy the problem of no playing enough Martin and I met for another game of SAGA last Friday.

Martin was playing Welsh and his warband included a mounted Warlord, two points of mounted Teulu (Hearthguard) and two points of foot Teulu and two points of Priodaur (Warriors). Martin would amalgamate the foot Teulu into a large unit each.

I went for Vikings in their usual composition. Which meant my Warlord, Jarl Sigvaldi and his Jomsvikings (Hearthguard / Mercenaries), one unit of Berserkers (Hearthguard), two units of Hirdmen (Hearthguard) and one unit of Bondi (Warriors). I would amalgamate both Hirdmen units into one large unit.

When it comes to the terrain, I will let the pictures do the talking, since it played just a very minor role in the game.

Table seen from the Welsh side

Table seen from the Welsh side

Table seen from the Viking side

Table seen from the Viking side

We decided to play the Clash of the Warlord scenario and I won set-up initiative on account of my more impressive beard (or rather three-day stubble).

We both set up virtually as battle lines. Martins Welsh had a unit of Priodaur in the woods on the left and another unit on the edge of the woods. In the middle was his unit of large Teulu and on his right the Warlord sandwiched between the units of mounted Priodaur. Since I had won the initiative I set up most of my Warband after Martin had deployed his Priodaur and chose to ignore the left flank and let his unit be wasted inside the woods. My Warlord was in the centre behind the screen of the large Hirdmen unit, with the Berserkers bringing up the rear. For some reason I failed to realise that rh Welsh had no bow armed units and that the Berserkers would hardly need the protection of another unit in front of them. To the right of this large body of troops came my Jomsvikings and the Bondi on the flank.

The advance

The advance

The first two rounds saw both sides advancing on each other. This was also marked by mediocre dice rolls on the SAGA dice. I managed to roll no Sowulo runes the first two rounds (= no rolling extra dice) and Martin managed to roll the same symbol on all dice during round one. The lack of ranged weapons also meant that we were just closing in on one another. The Welsh cavalry ended the second round just out of range for a charge of mine… or so they thought.


Battle lines

Now I finally got my Sowulos and ended up with a nice eight dice to allocate to the SAGA board. My Jomsvikings got three of those to hype them on abilities and another to give them an extra move this round. While fatigued they still managed to connect with the left unit of cavalry. It was my twenty dice versus their eight, but Martin managed to roll better on his saves and both of us lost three men. Since I had been the attacker I had to withdraw with the remaining Jarl Sigvaldi. Bad result? No not really this would later turn out as planned.

First contact

First contact

The Bondi also got two dice and charged the other unit of cavalry (I deliberately ignored the Warlord and decided to strike at his bodyguard units instead). This time it was eight dice versus eight and even though the Bondi had the worse armour they killed two and only lost one of their own, so the other Welsh cavalry withdrew. My Warlord and the large unit of Hirdmen just moved forward towards the enemy foot. The Berserkers though edged towards the right to get out from behind the other Vikings and get closer to the fight on the right.

Now the Welsh reacted in the way I had hoped (and aided by the fact that the SAGA dice were not kind with them). Martin removed the fatigue gained during combat from both his cavalry units. Next his Warlord charged Jarl Sigvaldi with the remaining trooper from the first Teulu unit. While the Jarl died, he managed to take the cavalryman with him (actually scoring enough hits to have killed three), but failed to make an impression on the enemy Warlord. Sounds bad? No, not really since now the Welsh Warlord was where I wanted him and without support. The next round saw me active my Berserkers first, they were now in range of the Warlord and with the Valhalla ability I bestowed on them went up to 20 attack dice. Due to their lowered armour they lost two of their number, but managed to score ten hits on the Warlord, which was far too much for him and saw him dead. They day was won for the Vikings and the Welsh were leaving the field defeated.

The end is near

The end is near


Posted by on September 24, 2012 in Medival, SAGA, Vikings, Welsh


16 responses to “SAGA, Vikings vs. Welsh

  1. John Michael

    September 24, 2012 at 13:21

    Nice report and great photos, I have my first SAGA game coming up in less then 2 weeks, I am quite looking forward to it.

    • Burkhard

      September 24, 2012 at 15:12

      Thank you, John.

      I am positive, that you should find it entertaining. I have to say though, that I am starting to find, that I need a second warband. Playing one faction (Vikings in my case) starts to get tactically boring.

  2. Brian Cantwell

    September 24, 2012 at 15:01

    Fun report and great looking table. May I ask where you got the big round hall in the corner of the table?

    • Burkhard

      September 24, 2012 at 15:14

      Thanks Brian,

      the hall was originally sold by Warlord games. But they do not sell it anymore. When I posted pictures of the painted buildings here a couple of month ago, someone said that they were being sold by Monolith these days.

  3. Ray

    September 24, 2012 at 19:33

    An excellent looking game and report!

  4. The Angry Lurker

    September 24, 2012 at 20:20

    Great batrep mate, I’m still waiting on Ray to put on a game!

    • Burkhard

      September 25, 2012 at 17:39

      Thanks Fran!

      I will do my best to entice Ray with more reports! 😉

  5. Alex

    September 25, 2012 at 11:09

    It will be easy to turn your Vikings into Jomsvikings. They play really differently and will offer a new gaming experience (and learning curve!). Great looking game btw.

    • Burkhard

      September 25, 2012 at 17:43

      Thank you, Alex.

      I might give the Jomsvikings a try. So far I never felt that they would play very differently from the Vikings… not enough to warent buying another set of minis. But I could try a game or two with my Vikings as stand-ins.

  6. Fireymonkeyboy

    September 25, 2012 at 16:24

    That table looks fantastic – what are you using for your fields?

  7. Victorious Secret

    January 1, 2013 at 20:44

    Hi Burkhard,

    Just looking at this amazing terrain, what brand of trees are you using?


    • Burkhard

      January 2, 2013 at 20:37

      Thank you Ben.

      Now those trees might cause some problems. The leafy parts are K&M trees. The trunks are from Snapdragon Studios. I had to drill holes into, the trunks (they were sold as tree stumps), shorten the wires on the K&M trees and then glue them into each other. Now the big problem is, that Snapdragon went out of business a couple of years ago and did not sell the moulds. So they are OOP for some time now. I have been looking for some alternative, that looks as good, but without any success! 😦


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