Field of Glory AAR - Part 2

By Scott Parrino 16 Feb 2010 0

Turn five was uneventful seeing more of the same as our forces close with each other.  But on Turn 6 things start to get interesting.

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On my left I continue to envelop the few of Caesar's forces stretched out in front of me.

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On the right I struggle to get behind the Velites and surround him.

Turn 6

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Turn 6 opening positions.

On my left things are going swimmingly.  I?ve started to rout my opponent?s archers and Velites, but he?s doing something not in the script: he?s moving two of his elite Legionaries in a position to threaten my cavalry.  That is a surprise and I?ve not seen it done before.  Usually the cavalry disengages when overmatched by stronger infantry, but that?s not always the case and it doesn?t always happen before serious damage has been done to them.  This is a development worth watching.  If I can disburse enough of his units, those two infantry by themselves will be fairly easy pickings for me.  If not, they may present a real problem.

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Note the two units of elite Legionairies (in blue, center top of screen) advancing toward me.

The center is quiet, and I?m going to hold off on advancing for at least a turn in case I can bait him to move forward and expose his flank to me some more.

On my right things aren?t getting off to a good start.  His Spanish Scutari just mangled one of my superior quality Legionaries, bringing them down a full 15% when we first engaged (image 089).  Again, this result is unusual, but it still hurts.  Hitting his elite forces down 15% will be nearly suicidal for that unit, and I?ll now have to force it to hold in reserve once they get done with the Scutari?assuming they don?t get further battered and rout first.

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My right flank is getting battered more than I want.

Aside from the Scutari hitting me much harder than I anticipated, things are going pretty much to plan for me, so I wrap up the turn and send it off.  Point wise I?m feeling pretty good.  I?ve accumulated 14 of 36 break points and our main forces haven?t collided yet, while only being at 2 of 53 of my own.  Sending his Scutari to hit my guys on their own hurt one unit of Legionaries, but I think I?ll be able to chop them to pieces.  I think I see my opponent?s reasoning; he?s trying to soften up my superior quality Legionaries before crushing them with his elite ones.  But if I?m too far ahead point wise, it won?t matter, even if he turns my flank.  If I can get a few more break points ahead before our main forces collide, I may generate a lead too far for him to overcome.  We shall see?

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On the left I've isolated and outnumbered his skirmishers. 

These should be easy break points to pick up.

Turn 7

As Turn 7 opens there is still a lot of room between the two armies.  We?re skirmishing with our lighter troops but the main bodies are still not engaged.  This is interesting.  I?m also interested to see my opponent?s deployment remains historical, with three Legionaries followed by a hex of spacing followed by three more.  I always close up these ranks and do not understand if there is any impact on gameplay.  It?s a question I guess I?m about to find the answer to.

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Caesar still has his units spaced at intervals.

My first move is to attack his Scutari on the far right of my line.  They get hit with two units of Ligurians who inflict a nice level of casualties, but still hold.  Then I focus on his Scutari in the middle of the line.  One attack from my Legionaries routs his unit, which causes a cascading rout of two more.  Three of his four Ligurians are fleeing for their lives before Marc Antony?s eyes.  I?ll now attempt to surround the remaining unit.  Surrounded units cannot flee and perish to the man?leaving zero probability of them rallying to become new menaces later in the game.  There should be more than enough room between the two main bodies of our armies for me to do this without fear of my men?s exposed backs being attacked before his unit is removed.  That?s great in theory, but in practice I can only bring one more Legionary unit to his flank; no one else is in position to attack.  Ah, well, no plan survives contact with the enemy, does it?  Now to my left.

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Getting my troops into position for attack on the right.

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First one unit routs...

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Then two more.  Marc Antony cannot be pleased.

On the left my first move is to set some archers on the heels of his routing Caetrarti.  This will ensure none rally before they leave the map. 

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Using skirmish troops to run down routed units ensures they don't return (upper left).

Now I have some thinking to do.  Caesar has two elite Legionaries hanging out all by themselves.  These elite troops are the best he has, and I have nothing that can stand before them and survive one on one.  My best chance is to surround him.  In previous games I have noticed that when they are surrounded, as elite veterans they quickly recognize their goose is cooked, so to speak, and while under normal circumstances they won?t rout until they?ve taken upwards of 60% casualties, when attacked in the rear, they will bolt immediately.  This can be doubly tricky for me as I have nothing heavier than some cavalry to engage them with.  The whirling blades of his elite Legionaries will slice up my light troops faster than a food processor goes through veggies on a Christmas at Grandma?s.  My best chance is to avoid those guys until I can bring my Legionaries to engage him in the front, then surround him.  Or I can try to ignore him and direct my lighter, faster troops to dart for his rear.  This, too, is tricky as our main bodies are separated by about 10 hexes.  My Legionaries march at two hexes per turn, which means he is five turns away if he holds his ground and refuses to advance.  Now is the time for me to move forward then.  No more delay.  I need to advance the main body of my troops while avoiding his heavy troops on my left until I?m ready.  I might be able to snatch a few more of his lighter troops if I?m crafty, but I shouldn?t get greedy.  Patience and discipline will win the rest of the game for me.  I think.

My mind made up, I decide to advance my main body before making any other decision about the disposition on my left.  Let?s see how things look as the heavier troops advance before I get too antsy.

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My center advances.

Finishing with the main body of troops I reexamine my left and see the clever move of my opponent.  He has had some Caetrarti and Javelin troops trailing an advancing cavalry unit.  They?re trying to flank me!  Clever, clever.  They aren?t as strong as me but such a distraction would blunt my end run to his rear.  Time to break that up.  I reposition some Javelin troops and cavalry to intercept him and run off his lighter troops with a cavalry charge from Labienus.  If his cavalry tries to force its way through my units the Javelins will probably hold their ground.  If they evade, I have more than enough cavalry to chase his single unit down and gobble it up.

Lastly I reposition my Javelins and Slingers and mounted archers a bit more to the right.  That?ll end the turn.  Ah, but the temptation to pepper his Veteran Legionaries with arrows and javelins proves too much, and instead of evading him I elect to shoot everything that is close.  This will bring his unit down to 89% strength ? still very, very effective considering their elite status.  Most of my units *should* evade if he charges, but if one or more decides to fight on principle it could suck me into an early decision to try and surround him with my light troops and hope for a rout or just lose the unit.  I end the turn and wonder what the next turn will hold.

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The end of Turn 7.

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