Sunday, 18 October 2015

30 games in 30 days - games 19 to 23

Attempting to play 30 ancient games in 30 days using my own small table fast play rules to test out a programmed opponent.  A few more details at this introductory post.  Game 1 to 5 are here; Games 6 to 12 are here. Game 13 to 18 here.

Note this may be a bit of a dry read - there are only few pictures of each game and a lot of the text is about playtesting lessons learnt.

Game 19  Visigoths Vs Late Romans  (Day 20 - Thursday)

Romans 9left)  Vs Visigoths (right)
Not that happy with the deployment but could not think of a much better one.   There are a lot of skirmishers on the roman side.  I did a few more random force generation with them.  The first one had 1 foot skirmishers.  I think it was just an extreme randomisation to get 5 foot skirmishers.

End positions - Visigoths won by breaking the roman centre.
Well, the Visigoths managed to fairly easily beat the Romans by routing the centre.  The high fortitude warbands charged into the roman line and beat them.  Not their forefathers Romans!  Even though the Romans are armed with bows, they did use them effectively, so it was my fault they lost by not playing with their strengths.

Game 20 - Picts Vs Later Britain/Gaul (Day 21/22 - Friday/Saturday)

British (left) Vs Picts (right)

Centre much reduced of units.

British cavalry cleaned up the Pict left flank.

British wins, just at game end.
A bit of a slogging match - the two lines of infantry warriors have the same CV, and so did the cavalry against the other infantry warriors on the Pict left flank (post first clash).  So there was a few rounds of melee where no much happened, then a string of 6's saw the British centre break, and a string of 1's saw the Picts break. However, the Pictish general rolled a 1 in melee, signifying a leader killed check.  Subsequent roll of a 1 sees the general killed and the Pict army break.  It was another close game as the British were 2 units away from breaking as well.

Game 21 - Ptolemaic Vs Early Selucid (Day 22 - Saturday)

Attacker randomises terrain (based on Defender's terrain type), Defender chooses board edge to deploy and attacker moved first. Deployment is simultaneous and hidden from each side (a little irrelevant for solo play).  The programmed opponent takes care of all of this for you.  If both sides are defenders and so will not really attack one another, the attackers tactics become centre attack, as shown above.

Interesting deployment - almost a mirror image.  The Selucid better fortitude phalanxes and better army command has led to them having less other units.  It will be interesting to see how the game goes.

Selucids (left) Vs Ptolemaic (right)

The generals got locked into combat early on and stayed this way for the entire game (about 6 melees).

Generals in combat from turn 1 on.

Never have I seen so many 1's!  The Ptolemaic army rolled a 1 just about every time they were in melee.  This disordered them and subsequently routed them, and 4 units later they reached their breakpoint.  The Selucids lost some skirmishers and that was it.

End game. Selucid win due to Ptolemaic string of bad dice rolls.

Game 22 - Republican Rome Vs Later Carthage (Day 22/23 - Saturday/Sunday)

Six units for the Romans - the smallest force yet.  But with an army command of +2, it requires the Carthaginians to rout most of them.
Also noticed that I have previously made Triarii drilled (may wheel and move) but it is not showing up on this list.  Fixed it here and for other drilled troops.

Carthaginians (left) Vs Romans (right)
First zone order roll sees the entire Roman force go on the attack and rush for the centre.  No good as this will force them to advance quickly to engage, rather than advancing with the centre and protecting the flanks.  Luckily  the next turn they roll and are less excited - back to start orders.

Romans win, just.
Interesting battle. a close game that the Romans won, themselves only one unit from breaking. The legions won in the centre against the Libyans, but then the Carthaginian Veterans rolled up the centre legions.  finally the citizen infantry succumbed to the Triarii and the game was won by the Romans.  While I thought it would be hard for the Romans, quality does count a lot in the game (as designed).

Game 23 - Archemenid Persia Vs Lydian (Day 23 - Sunday)
I have caught up and now back on track - game 23 on the 23rd day.

Persia (left) Vs Lydia (right)

The unlucky Lydian general - a great move but unlucky and killed.
So unlucky!  Lydian General attacks the end unit of the battleline (ignoring the peltasts as they are unlikely to do much damage to the general unit).  It is Combat value 2 + 1(high fortitude) +2 Gerneral) +2 hock impact) - 1 single unit = 6 Vs 3 for the Sparabara. so a difference of 3.  Rolls a 1, gernal killed check - rolls a 1 - killed.  first combat of the game, General gone already!  so the unit survives, the the general ability is gone and each unit undergoes a morale check.

Lydians lose.
It was going to be hard for Lydia with te general gone.  And in fact they lost and Persia lost no units.  Losing a general early on hinders being able to move units and concentration of effort (the general's +2 bonus). The Lydians never recovered and the Persians controlled the game..

Really enjoying these battles and the rules are holding up very well.  I think so I far I have made 2 minor changes to the rules (last time was Game 7) and a few tweaks to the programmed opponent.  Hopefully after the last 8 games the rules can be considered by me stable and won't require much, if any, change from here on in. i feel a bit more confident reaching 30 games in 30 days.  Game 23 was on day 23 and the next 8 days are not very busy (yet!).  


  1. Shaun,

    Fantastic man, quite the wargaming feat, and looks to be a good bit of fun too! Keep it up buddy, the finish line is in sight.


    1. Thanks for the encouragement! It is nothing compared to your efforts as I am not writing a full battle report for each game. I did think I was not going to make it with so much stuff on last week. But, barring unknowns, I should complete it on Day 30.

  2. Well, thanks man, but this is all you, and is a hell of an accomplishment! There will be songs, drink, and parades to commemorate your wargaming feat of arms! If you pay for it, I'll even come for the festivities ;)


  3. I am impressed Shaun! When I saw your initial goal I thought you were BIT ambitious. Maybe not so! Well done!

    1. Thanks John! I thought of doing the 30 games in 30 days in 2014 so when it came into my mind again, I never really thought it through (if I had, I may never have got going!) So I just started. I did question what I was doing at game 15 and game 24 and considered giving up. It is not actually that hard but having to play every day has twice made me wonder. It is now taking just over one hour per game to setup, play and change figures over. It is fun but cannot imagine doing it on this scale again.