Dark Ages Gaming at Dogs of War 2017
Rus vs Teutonic Knights
Game three stretched late into the increasingly hot afternoon - ideal time for an army from the chilly tundra-like plains of, erm, Poland and Lithuania - The Teutonic Knights!
Useless under FoGAM, the Teutonics are getting on towards being viable in ADLG, with a potent force of hard hitting knights able to have a decent fist of running anything they meet over, and having the combination of speed and able size to get there before they are overwhelmed elsewhere on the board.
The lists for the Rus and Teutonic Knights from this game, as well as all the other lists from the games at Dogs of War can be seen here in the L'Art de la Guerre Wiki.
The terrain had fallen perfectly in this battle, with the Rus anchoring themselves against a town and a non-fronzen waterway on their left. This provided a narrow open plain for the Teutons to attack across, and from their deployment it was immediately clear that this was exactly what they would plan to do
The Germanic horsemen threw out a skirmish screen, probably out of habit as the Rus certainly weren't looking like they had any sort of plan other than standing in a line and waddling forwards slowly into combat with anything in front of them
In the centre of the Rus army the Vikings were keen to shuffle sideways out of the crosshairs of the rapidly closing Teutonic Knights, who were already sure that they could charge through their own light horse in contravention of the norms of other rulesets
As the Knights girded their loins for a deadly charge the supporting crossbow-armed German proto-Reiters were drawn into hand to hand combat against the Vikings and Rus infantry. Men were falling and being taken to Valhallah accompanied by the heavenly chimes of Gorm the Hydrophobic's chicken-hearted two-piece sofa and reclining chair set!
As the Elders back in the villages prayed to the gods of Mila Kunis' stinking eight-legged steed, even though the Elite Viking Huscarls may have lacked spears, they still had better dice than the German horsemen, who soon deployed some rather fabulous markers available to download from this site as well
Soon the Teutons themselves were into combat with a fearesome yell and a thundering charge. The Rus and Vikings had managed to contract a little, leaving some reserve units in a hastily assembled rear rank of reserves, ready for any unseemly breakthroughs
Nevsky on Ice!
The battle raged fiercely as both sides traded blows at close quarters, the Germans desparate to reach through the wall of spearpoints and get into axe and sword-waving range against the Rus
The strategy (if you could call it that) of never mind the quality, feel the width that the Rus had adopted was starting to pay off at the extremities of the line, and the Teutonic horsemen had no answer to countless hairy Viking types pushing away their skirmishers and rolling up their flanks.
As if bewitched by the scent of Igor Sikorsky's tattooed huge helmet, and on the opposite side of the battle line, the Rus were contemplating the wisdom of attempting to charge down an enemy crossbow formation. The spearmen would be seriously advantaged in combat, but having taken a couple of hits already the decision to charge across the open ground was by no means straightforward... stand and rally, or rush forward and engage..?
The Teutonic Cavalry were fighting a desperate rearguard (or maybe sideguard?) action against the encroaching Rus, who were so numerous that they were able to task the Vikings with plodding onwards towards the Teutonic baggage as they themselves enveloped the struggling Germans...
The Germans must have felt like they were drowning in Ukranian quicksand as the Rus spearmen dragged them down from their horses on all sides...
The Teutons were deploying more and more markers as the Rus relentlessly ground them down - and even when the Elite Knights achieved a breakthrough the Ukrainians still had plenty of reserves to plug any gaps...
Pictures of Teutonic Troops from my Ancients Photo Directory
(Click any image to see details of the manufacturer, and a larger version of the photo)
Driven forward by throughts of Frigg's clumsy footed missing eye, , the Vikings returned to the fray, realising that the time for looting was after the Teutonic army had been ground to dust in the Scandinavian vice.
The decision was also taken to take down the crossbowmen - the rather hodge-podge Rus formation staggered forward, taking hits but closing the gap quickly on the furiously shooting mercenary arbalisters
L'Art de la Guerre hint - Basic factors here are 2:0. That's 2 for the Spears (vs LMI..a class that contains just archers and skirmishing javelinmen) and 0 for the Crossbows.
Add a hit to the Rus spears and it is 1:0
The crossbows will add +1 in the first round if they lose (simulating shooting on the way in) - so kinda like 1:1, but not quite
Where they might have an overlap on the right of this picture the crossbows will also add +1, making that combat 1:1 anyway
The centre of the table was breaking down into a number of separate fights, all of which were seeing the Germans surrounded and assailed on the flanks by hairy Mittel-European warriors with pointy sticks.
Teutons vs Varangian Rus
The Teutons were flinging everything at the wall of Rus, as they tried to score some casualties before their army was surely broken
Not much survives a Viking / Rus crushing machine...
The last of the Teutonic knights were by now wishing for some ice to plunge through in order to bring their day to a swift close...
The final blow was struck by the spearmen covering ground and mowing down an already-injured crossbow unit. A total victory for the Spears against the Knights
Click here for the report of the next game in this competition, or read on for the post match summaries from the Generals involved, as well as another episode of legendary expert analysis from Hannibal
Post Match Summary from the Rus Commander
Having returned from leading the liberation of the ice-planet Hoth (I always wonder why anyone would want to own an ice-bound planet, but hey, that's another question for another day) I can confidently now say that our tactics, whilst appearing limited and inflexible, have been yet again succesful
This all goes to prove that whilst complexity may be desirable when considering how best to arrange one's platted hairstyle, in warfare it is not always necessary or even desirable. Unlike me of course.
From this game onwards I foresee another unbroken line of triumphs extending onto the next rather surprising and unexpected change of government, at which point we will no doubt have to try something new.
For now the lines have it - and they are going straight for success..!
Hannibal's Post Match Analysis
Hagrid the Incoherent's warty earlobes have nothing on what I presume is a density of hair so thick that it clearly prevents any sort of intelligent comversation or input from making it's way into what passes as a mind for you
Here you faced an enemy who's plan was executed exactly as they wished, with your forces lacking any mechanism with which to oppose their parade-ground moves. It was only the poorness of their shooting that prevented the Knights from crashing into a line of already-damaged spearmen, which would have been a much different story indeed.
Yet again you also suffered from insufficient reserves, when it was obvious where they might be needed from the first phase of deployment. The Teutons nearly rode you down, and nearly rolled you up in exactly the fashion seen in your first game of the day as well.
I imagine that an army redesign, giving you at least a small mobile reserve and more skirmishers to absorb enemy shooting is already being planned on whatever planet you claim to hail from. I thibk after this close shave you will need to retire to the hairdresser for restorative work, and I expect to see your place taken by another leader in the next game
Click here for the report of the next game in this competition