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SAGA, Byzantines vs. Welsh

Last weekend saw my Byzantines vs. Martins Welsh.

Martin played Welsh, led by a mounted Warlord. There were two points of mounted Teulu (Hearthguard) and two points of foot Teulu, one point of Priodaur (Warriors) and one point of bow armed Bonnedig (Levies). The Teulu would be amalgamated into a large foot and large mounted unit respectively, giving Martin only five SAGA dice to roll.

I chose to give my Byzantines their first outing. They too were led by a mounted Warlord. There were three points of Kavallaroi (mounted Heathguards), two with spears which would be amalgamated into one large unit and one with bows. To bring the numbers up there was one point of Kontaratoi (Warriors armed for close combat) and two points of Toxotai (Warriors armed with bows). This would give seven SAGA dice rounded down to the maximum six to roll each round.

The table was set up for a “Battle at the Ford” game. Open terrain with some hills along the table edges, a few fields and small hills and a small village (which would play no role at all). The main feature obviously was the river running through the middle of the table. Seen from the Byzantine side there was a ford slightly to the left of the middle of the table and a stone bridge to the far right.

We rolled for initiative, which was won by the Byzantines. So I set up my Warriors to the left opposite the Ford, with the Kantaratoi up front. Now Martin had to set up all his troops. So he placed his Bonnedig and foot Teulu in front of the Ford as well. His mounted Teulu, Priodauer and Warlord were set up on the other flank, in front of the bridge. As was to be expected, I set up my cavalry and Warlord to oppose any moves made by them.

Welsh closing in on the ford

Welsh closing in on the ford

The first round was quiet uneventful. I had won the initiative and even though both sides advanced at full speed, we ended up without bowshot.

Troubled bridge over calm waters

Troubled bridge over calm waters

For the second round it was clear, that my archers on the left would still be out of range, so I just advanced them further. On the right the lines would be close enough, or at least I thought so. A quick measure showed that the Byzantine cavalry were just a few millimetres short of making contact with the Welsh cavalry and therefore decided to charge the foot warriors together with the Warlord. Technically they should have had a chance to kill them all, but in the end two survived, at the loss of a single Byzantine horseman. Not too bad a result.

Byzantine Cavalry charging Welsh Bonedig

Byzantine Cavalry charging Welsh Bonedig

Well now it was the Welsh turn and as came to be expected their eight mounted Teulu and the Warlord charged the Byzantine riders. The mounted archers fired of a volley in support, but failed to make an impression. Since the Welsh spend two extra SAGA dice to gain extra attacks, I decided to sacrifice half my attacks to gain more defensive dice, but in the end there were enough unsaved hits to kill the Kavallaroi almost twice and they perished. This was not looking good! But at least they had taken three Teulu with them. On the other flank the Welsh just advanced as well.

Closing in on the ford

Closing in on the ford

So at the beginning of the third round it was time to take some desperate measures. As a result the Kontaratoi on the left flank got not SAGA dice at all and the Toxotai just two dice to make use of their support archer ability. While it is not great advantage over activating both units to fire the regular way (you still spend two dice) it allows them to fire through friendly units, which they did, firing through the spearmen to their front to attack the foot Teulu. And sixteen Warrior archers is not too shabby. They scored five hits and the Welsh only managed to save two… So it was three Teulu down. Not a bad start for this round. A quick calculation on the other flank showed, that the Kavallaroi archers would not be able to kill the remaining five mounted Teulu with their bows alone. So led by their Warlord, they unsheathed their swords and charged in. Together they managed to kill all Welsh riders, but when the dust settled only the Warlord and one Archer remained, but at least some releave for that flank.

Desperate measures

Desperate measures

Now initiative passed over to the Welsh. And they were now starting to feel the loss of the Teulu, only being able to roll 4 SAGA dice now. At the Bridge the two remaining Warriors charged the lone Kavallaroi, killing him at no loss of their own. Now the Welsh Warlord decided to charge his Byzantine opposite. But both went into combat with fatigue and decided to use the other ones fatigue to beef up their own armour. In the end neither scored enough hits to kill the other. At the ford, the Teulu advanced and the Levies, now in range, fired a volley at the Kontaratoi, killing one.

Death of the final Kavallaroi

Death of the final Kavallaroi

Now that initiative passed back to the Byzantines. At the ford the Toxotoi used their Massed Archery on the Welsh Heathguards once more causing them a few casualties (unfortunately I do not remember how many) and the Kontaratoi advanced. That was the best I could do, being down to five SAGA dice now and requiring most for for the other flank, where the Byzantine Warlord charged the remaining two Priodauer. In spite his best hopes, he only managed to kill one and decided to withdraw out of range of the Welsh Warlord with his remaining actions.

Now the Welsh Warlord decided to take another stab at the Byzantine one, removed his own fatigue and charged. Due to the distance this took two actions and he arrived with fatigue once more. Again both Warlords chose to use the others fatigue to raise their armour, and again it came to nothing. At the ford the Teulu charged the Byzantine spears, killing three for minimal losses and pushing them back. For lack of dice, the Bonnedig did nothing.

Clash at the ford

Clash at the ford

At the beginning of the fifth round the Byzantines got two re-rolls on their SAGA dice giving them a massive eight dice to draw from. The Toxotoi got the Support Archer ability twice, to take the Teulu out for good, but the first volley already killed the remaining three Heathguards. So the second volley was shifted to the Levy archers killing five. the Kontaratoi, who had been in position to charge the Teulu advanced on the Welsh archers, but were too far away to charge. At the bridge the Warlord removed his fatigue and charged the Welsh Warlord. Now only the Byzantine leader could raise his own armour and scored three unsafed hits, standing victorious over his dead opponent when the dust settled.

This meant that the Welsh were down to one SAGA die. Since the lone Priodauer could never hope to harm the Warlord, this one went to the Bonnedig archers, who failed to make an impression on their target. All that was left to do now was mopping up. The Byzantine Warlord killed the lone Welsh warrior and another volley of arrows from the Byzantine archers killed another four Welsh archers. The remaining three (with no SAGA dice to roll) saw the futility of further actions and bowed to the might of the Byzantine Empire.

Mopping up

Mopping up

 
 

Three player SAGA game

Last Friday we had another game of SAGA. Yes I know we hardly seem to be playing anything but SAGA lately, but honestly… after working over 50 hours last week, I just wanted something simple. And this one was a bit special, since we did a three player game. I already have to apologize for the lack of photos, but I got so excited during some parts of the game, that I simply forgot to take some photos.

As to the forces… here we are:

Martin was playing his Normans essentially in their normal composition. A mounted Warlord, three units of mounted Knights (Hearthguard), two units of Sergeants (Warriors), one of them armed with crossbows and one unit of bow armed Peasants (Levies). Martin would amalgamate two of his Knight units into a large one.

Vijay was playing with Martins Welsh since this was his first ever game. He too had a mounted Warlord, two points of mounted Teulu (Hearthguard) and two points of foot Teulu, one point of Priodaur (Warriors) and one point of bow armed Bonnedig (Levies). Vijay would keep them all separate units.

I had my Vikings. A Warlord, Jarl Sigvaldi and his Jomsvikings (Hearthguard / Mercenaries), one unit of Berserkers (Hearthguard), two units of Hirdmen (Hearthguard) and one unit of Bondi (Warriors). Just like last time I would amalgamate both Hirdmen units into one large unit. I know this is getting boring, but all things going well I shall buy into some Byzantines at this weekends Crisis in Antwerp.

The table was fairly open with an assortment of woods, fields and s swamp around the edges. One corner featured a village behind a palisade and some houses roughly in the middle of the table. I set up in the corner with the fortified village (the Jomsvikings and Bondi within, the rest without the palisade), Martin in the corner on the other side and Vijay along the far edge. On the next photo you can see the Welsh in the foreground, the Normans to the far left and the Vikings (already having moved) to the far right.

SAGA table

SAGA table

As you can see both Martin and Vijay set up in pretty compact formations, while I went for a split. Vijay also had unit of cavalry behind the building to the left front (you can barely make out one of the riders).

We played the “A Feast for the Crows” scenario and if you are used to a normal game of SAGA this requires a new way of thinking on the game. Usually you look who goes first and then you just alternate between players. In a multiplayer game you begin a round with every player rolling his SAGA dice and placing them on the battle board. Then you roll a die and whoever diced highest goes first and then you through the players clockwise. Once everyone is done you repeat the process for the next round.  So you do not just need to plan your move, but also need to plan what you might be required to do if all the other players have made their moves before it is your turn. Not so easy.

On the first round I won initiative, but this did not do me much good since we were all just moving forward. Martin in I both moved part of our forces towards each other and the other part each towards Vijay. Vijay moved a bit more cautiously (to be fair this was also due to the more restrictive terrain in his set-up area) and his cavalry to the centre.

On the second round Martin won initiative. His Crossbows opened up on the Welsh cavalry and in spite of the -2 Armour (-1 for crossbows and -1 for ranged combat vs. Javelin armed troops) he only managed to score one kill. Not a good start. The crossbows were activated a second time, but failed to score even a single kill. It kept getting worse!

Shot in the back

Shot in the back

The Normans felt it was time for a change of targets and the large unit of mounted Knights went for the Viking Hirdmen. Not a good idea. I had rolled pretty well on my SAGA dice and was able to call Ragnarök which meant an armour reduction for (all my) enemies till the end of the round. In the first charge the Vikings lost just one of their own, but the Normans three. Just when they were about to retreat I used another of my SAGA dice to call another round of combat (Thor). Another Viking died, but so did two more Knights. Five for two was quiet a bad trade and the Knights retreated towards their Warlord. The other unit of mounted Knights went and charged some Welsh Teulu, but only with limited success (one loss and no kill if I remember correctly)… this was certainly not a good day for the Norman elites! Now it was my turn to act. The Hirdmen were keen to get to the Norman Warlord, but he was just too far away. So they went for the Knights who had just attacked them. Two more Vikings were to lose their lives, but the Knights were history. And their attack had brought the Vikings close enough to the Warlord. So the Hirdmen activated once more and charged the Warlord. He died quick and had the bad luck to take not a single Viking with him. Now I was starting to run out of dice. So the Jomsvikings and Bondi just advanced and the Warlord moved behind a screen of the Berserkers (they could not move since I had to use their die for the second activation of my Hirdmen). Now it was Vijays turn and he decided to take his revenge on the Norman crossbows. The decision was actually aided by the fact, that my Ragnarök still reduced the Normans armour. If I remember correctly he first charged them with his cavalry, which lost two of their own (remember Ragnarök reduced their armour as well) while killing only two Normans and were driven back. This was followed up by an attack of the Priodaur. I can not remember how this ended exactly, but I do remember, that the Normans lost far more men than the Welsh this time. While his archers initially intended to fire off a volley they were just too restricted behind the houses and tried to move into a better position for the next round. And this ended the second round.

Welsh going after the crossbows

Welsh going after the crossbows

I won initiative on the next round which was to my taste.  With all the ranged combat troops close to my Berserkers (remember they are weak on their armour side) they did not really provide a robust bodyguard for my Warlord. So I only consolidated my troops on that flank by giving the Warlord and Berserkers a double move to get them towards the Hirdmen using one special ability (Njord) to remove the fatigue from them. Being high on all the kills I had already scored I decided to net some more on the other flank. My Bondi charged the Norman Peasant archers. On paper this should have been a good idea, in real life it was not. They killed only three or four archers while loosing five of their own. Did this deter me? No. The Jomvikings were out to kill some Sergeants and charged them on a doubly move… or at least they planned to. But Vijay used one of the Welsh abilities to slow them down so they did not make contact. Now it was Vijays turn. First up his Teulu charged the Norman Knights that had attacked them the previous round and wiped them out.

Norman cavalry vs. Welsh

Norman cavalry vs. Welsh

But in return they lost all but one of their own. The Priodaur battled it out with the remaining crossbows, but to be honest… I do not remember how that went. The only thing I remember is that by the end of the next round Vijays Priodaur, foot Teulu and mounted Teulu on that flank were down to one man each and that the Crossbows were history. But back to this round. One of his foot Teulu moved into the swamp and flung some Javelins at my Berserkers. I was fearing the worst, but they came away without a loss. The Welsh Warlord charged mine, taking the un-bloodied unit of mounted Teulu along. Surprisingly enough, they scored only two hits and my Warlord managed to save them both. But he managed to kill one of his attackers and the Welsh withdrew. Now things passed on to Martin. As I said, I can not remember what happened during the crossbow vs. Welsh combat, but I beleave he managed to score a few hits in ranged combat. But on the other flank it was payback. At first he activated his Peasant archers, who did a mighty fine job of plastering my Bondi with arrows killing a fair number of them (I think I was only left with two after that). Then his Sergeants attacked my Jomsvikings. This went fairly well since I lost only one Jomsviking, but killed three Sergeants. Since I still had a die on the Thor ability, I decided we should have another round of combat… a very bad idea. While I managed to kill another four Sergeants, they managed to kill my three remaining Jomsvikings. Which effectively ended round three.

Viking Bondi and Jomsvikings going for the Normans

Viking Bondi and Jomsvikings going for the Normans

On the next round Martin and I were starting to feel our losses. Martin had only two SAGA dice to roll (but managed to get to four after two re-rolls) and the loss of my Jomsvikings brought me down as well. Vijay did not have that problem… as I said he still had one man in three units, so they all gave him dice. Anyway I won initiative again. It was time to kill another Warlord. Obviously the best chance to kill his Warlord would be to attack him with my Warlord and Hirdmen together. But he still had three Teulu close enough to sacrifice them, if I scored enough hits. So my Berserkers had to attack them first. But again that did not go entirely as planned. I lost two Berserkers and only took two Teulu out of the game. Since my Hirdmen were too far from the enemy Warlord to attack him in one go, they moved closer. Then my Warlord charged and took the Hirdmen along on their second activation. Since they all had one fatigue now (my Hirdmen from being activated a second time this round, my Warlord from his close combat last round and my Berserkers from the close combat this round) I used the Njord ability to remove all those fatigue markers. The ensuing close combat saw the Warlord receive 4 unsaved hits, so he just died without sacrificing any Warriors, but he killed a Hirdman or two. With all this I had exhausted all my dice and the Bondi could not do a thing this round. And from this point on the game was just a series of quick actions to mop up the situation all around. Vijays activation saw him mopping up the remaining crossbows and through attacks by his Teulu foot and archers kill my remaining Hirdmen and Berserkers. Martin killed my remaining two Bondi with his Archers.

Some Welsh, some Vikings and some Normans

Some Welsh, some Vikings and some Normans

I won the next activation. With my Warlord all but surrounded I decided to attack the weakest unit blocking my route of escape… Vijays Archers. But there were just too many of them and my Warlord went to Valhalla. With this we called it a day simply on the count that there was too much space between Martin and Vijay to make effective combat during what time remained. So we counted points. Both the Normans and Welsh had scored 19 point, the Vikings 22.
All in all it was quiet an interesting experience due to the changed turn sequence and the need to cover all bases since you would never know when your turn was to come or what had happened by then. What I noticed was that it became more of a regular wargame, with all of us using their SAGA dice mostly to activate units and not for special abilities. But it was a nice change and I think it will be even more interesting with even more players. I will keep you posted on our next game.

Tomorrow I will be off to Antwerp and hopefully post a picture report soonish!

 
9 Comments

Posted by on November 2, 2012 in Medival, Normans, SAGA, Vikings, Welsh

 

SAGA, Vikings vs. Welsh

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.

Battlelines

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

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

 

The SAGA double whammy

Yesterday we met up at my place for another game of SAGA, or rather as it turned out two of them. Please bear with me on this one… we did a lot of chatting and throwing around ideas what to do for Crisis in Antwerp this fall, so my memory of some of the details is a bit flimsy at times which might make the reports a bit short.

The table looked like this: We had a big two level hill in one corner of the table and a small dark age village in the opposing corner. There were two forests on each side of the table, another small hill on the same side as the village and a walled in corn field roughly in the middle of the table. Some tree stumps, bushes and cows rounded things off. All in all it looked like this:

Table seen from the Viking side

Table seen from the Viking side

Table from the Welsh side

Table from the Welsh side

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. I have to say though, that I need to paint another two pints of Vikings so I can swap the Jomsvikings out. The composition leaves me a bit inflexible from a tactical point of view and Martin is focussing on my weaknesses quiet well by now. Or I will have to start a Norman and Anglo-Saxon Warband early.

Martin was playing Welsh, this time without stand-ins. Some minis were only finished yesterday! A Warlord, two points of mounted Teulu (Hearthguard) and two points of foot Teulu and two points of Priodaur (Warriors). Martin would amalgamate both the mounted and foot Teulu into a large unit each.

For the first game we chose Clash of the Warlords once more. Martin deployed his Teulu units in the centre with is Warlord and his Priodaur units one on each flank.

I put my Jomsvikings on my right flank, the Bondi on the left atop the hill and the rest in my centre, with the Hirdmen forming a screen around the Warlord and the Berserkers bringing up the rear. Both sides advanced on each other during the first round.

Welsh advance

Welsh advance

OK... they seem unafraid of the Vikings

OK… they seem unafraid of the Vikings

I had expected Martin to make a concerted advance with all his units when suddenly his mounted Teulu and Warlord charged forward and loosened off some Javelins at my Jomsvikings. The Jomsvikings were quick enough to get their shields up and suffered no losses.

Let´s get ready to rumble

Let´s get ready to rumble

I thought that this was it, but no… both the Warlord and Teulu activated another time and charged the Jomsvikings with the use of a special ability to give them more attacks… 26 dice in total. The Jomsvikings were not hyped up yet and only got 14. To what end? Well the Jomsvikings suffered two dead and the Welsh six and had to leave with a bloody nose.

Welsh cavalry and Warlord charging the Jomsvikings

Welsh cavalry and Warlord charging the Jomsvikings

Now it was time for payback. The Jomsvikings went after the Warlord. And would have killed him if the two remaining Teulu had not thrown themselves in harm’s way and sacrificed their own lives for his.

At the same time the Hirdmen and Viking Warlord advanced leaving the Berserkers behind and charged the Warlord with the expected results. The Welsh Warlord suffered a total of 13 wounds, of which he saved none… minced meat. And the game was over after just two rounds.

So we decided to have another game… “The Escort”, which would require one side to moved at least two out of three baggage items (we went for three cows and oxen) off the other table edge. The roll of the dice would have Martin to be the escorting player and me the attacker.

My composition remained unchanged. The Warlord and the Hirdmen were deployed in the centre, the Berserker on the right flank and the Jomsvikings on the left. The Bondi formed a long line to the rear and would act as a reserve.

Martin changed the composition of his Warband though. This time the Warlord would be dismounted and only one point of mounted Teulu were in the mix. There were also two points of foot Teulu, two points of Priodaur and one point of bow armed Bonnedig (Levies). The Warlord and foot Teulu were in the centre forming a screen around the livestock, with the Priodaur securing the flanks and the mounted Teulu brining up the rear. the Bonnedig were on his right flank.

Viking deployment at the begining of the second game

Viking deployment at the beginning of the second game

While I had enough dice to advance fast Martin did not get as many and since he had to pay for the movement of the mighty bovine force as well, only part of his force was able to advance on the first round. One of his Priodaur units started moving away from the main body in the direction of my Jomsvikings though… those four men would be in for a tough fight!

On the third round I went for an all out offense. With the two units of Welsh Teulu wedged in at the bottleneck formed by the village and field, my Hirdmen charged the first unit of them. The fight was short and bloody and the Vikings annihilated the whole unit at the loss of just one fighter. But the Warlord commanded them on and together they charged the next unit of Teulu. Again all Welsh were killed, this time at no loss of my own. The dice were really on my side ad against Martin. While the Berserkers and Bondi lingered on, the Jomsvikings charged forward  to take on the Archers before they had to face the combined might of two units. While I had allocated three SAGA dice to max their combat abilities out I rolled poorly (only a “5” from three D6) which left them with mediocre abilities. Still they managed to kill seven archers at one loss of their own.

Welsh Archers vs. Jomsvikings

Welsh Archers vs. Jomsvikings

Now it was Martins turn again. His right hand Priodaur charged the 7 remaining Hirdmen and killed them all at only three losses of their own. The dice luck had turned 180° for both of us and would remain that way till the end of the game. Now my Warlord was alone in the centre and faced with a charge by the mounted Teulu. They killed him off with ease and he only managed to take one with him.

One the other flank the three remaining Jomsvikings were first subjected to arrows from the Bonnedig archers and javelins from the Priodaur that killed two more of them and left Jarl Sigvaldi alone.

Cornered Jomvikings

Cornered Jomsvikings

But that was not all. The Warriors charged the lone Jarl and he died in heroic combat, taking three of them with him over the rainbow bridge.

The end of Jarl Sigvaldi

The end of Jarl Sigvaldi

Now everything rested on the Berserkers and the Bondi reserve. If anyone could pull the tables around now it was the Berserkers. They charged the Priodaur with the plan of annihilating them and then going on to the Teulu cavalry in the same turn. They never got that far. Although they managed to wipe out the Warriors, all four lost their lives. Since I had rolled no SAGA dice to activate th Bondi my activation was over. Martin advanced on, consolidating his forces. When the next round saw me rolling no dice that I could use for the Bondi again we decided to call it a day.

Even though the dice had a huge part in deciding either game, we still had lots of fun. Plus it was the first outing for the new lighting in the games room (three times as powerful and now with daylight bulbs) which in my opinion greatly enhanced the quality of the photos, too.

 
16 Comments

Posted by on July 28, 2012 in Medival, Rules, SAGA, Vikings, Welsh

 

Another game of SAGA

Another game of SAGA

So last Friday we played another game of SAGA. (We actually played two more games the week before, but I for got to put the memory card into the camera before I left for Martins place and those from the cell phone turned out too poor to show.)

As usual I went for Vikings, with my normal set-up. I had 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.

Martin wanted a change from his Normans and went for Welsh (with a few late Roman and Saxon stand-ins). A Warlord, two points of mounted Teulu (Hearthguard) and two points of foot Teulu, one point of Priodaur (Warriors) and one point of bow armed Bonnedig (Levies). Martin would amalgamate both the mounted and foot Teulu into a large unit each.

We played the Clash of the Warlords scenario meaning we would have to kill the other Warlord by the end of turn six to win. If neither had done so the game would be decided on points.

Seen from the Viking side the table looked like this. On the right side there was a village with five houses. There were fields and orchards behind hedges along both deployment edges. In the middle of the table there was a slight hill and to the left a very small wood. Some haystacks in the middle rounded everything off.

Table seen from the Viking side

Table seen from the Viking side

Table seen from the Welsh side

Table seen from the Welsh side

I won the initiative and set up my Warlord in the middle of the table and Martin set up his roughly opposite mine together with his Levies. I set up my Bondi in the fields behind the hedge. Now it was Martins turn again and he set up his foot Teulu and Priodaur in the orchard behind the hedge and his mounted Teulu to the right (from my perspective) of his Warlord. Now came the rest of my minis with Jarl Sigvaldi and the Jomsvikings on my far left. My Hirdmen formed a screen in front of the Warlord (no use getting him studded with arrows) and my Berserkers behind them.

Welsh deployed in the orchard

Welsh deployed in the orchard

Martin won the first initiative and began with a general advance. His riders moved to the right to get a better avenue into the village. I felt that his Warlord was awfully alone and that taking him out quickly would be the best way to win. So I though about just allocating my SAGA dice to my right, but decided against it. The Welsh centre was still close enough to come to his support if I gave my plans away too early, so I made a general advance as well. My Berserkers swung out into the village to take on the Welsh mounted Teulu and lure them further away from their Warlord.

Welsh Heathguards and Warriors

Welsh Heathguards and Warriors

On the second round the Welsh still advanced with the mounted Teulu moving further into the village. The archers tried to fire off a volley at my Hirdmen, but the norse gods intervened and just made them move. Now it was my turn. I rolled my SAGA dice and something special happened. In all the four games we had played so far th best I had ever got (even including re-rolls) was one Sowulo rune (that is the “S”-shaped one, the rarest on the dice). This time I got four. I spend two of them to roll four more dice and got another three Sowulos. What a situation to go on a general attack! I decided to allocate all my dice to the right flank and to buy abilities on the battle board. First my Berserkers went to charge the Welsh horsemen, but the Welsh used one of their abilities to make them go slower and they only made half the way. I did not care too much since their mission was just to occupy the riders. Since they were in a position to block off the best route through the village, they would still be able to do that.

My Hirdmen and the Warlord advanced and then charged into the archers. They killed eleven of them at no loss to themselves. With the final archer on the run the enemy Warlord was on his own. I ended my activation with three dice still on my battleboard.

Stand in cavalry for the Welsh

Stand in cavalry for the Welsh

Now the Welsh realised their mistake and started to move towards their warlord, throwing Javelins at my Hirdmen. But they only killed one of them and were too far off to move into contact. The Welsh cavalry charged into my Berserkers and I decided to use my remaining dice on the battleboard. I called the Ragnarok ability which would reduce the Welsh armour by one until the end of the turn and gave my Berserkers two more attack dice. All four of my Berserkers died, but they took four of the Welsh with them… well not really since there is no place for the enemies of the Vikings in Valhalla! 😀

Can you see it coming

Can you see it coming

Middle of the battleground

Middle of the battleground

Too late

Too late

But all the Welsh moves were too late. Both the Warlord and Hirdmen rested when I activated them to remove their fatigue and then charged into the Welsh Warlord. While he tried to fight valiantly, he stood no chance and died taking only one Viking with him.

Ganging up on the Welsh warlord

Ganging up on the Welsh warlord

This is what you get for going out alone

This is what you get for going out alone

 
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Posted by on July 3, 2012 in Medival, Rules, SAGA, Vikings, Welsh