English Civil War in Oxford 2017
Later Royalist vs Later Royalist
The new era of the old Renaissance dawns, as the competition-grade test for the upcoming 'optional revision' of the FoGR ruleset happens. The weekend is in April, the venue is the Kings Capital, Royal Oxford... and with Cavaliers becoming better, and Commanded shot treated differently in the rules a Later Royalist army is the obvious choice to take - so home they come....
The lists for the Later Royalist and Later Royalist from this game, as well as all the other lists from the games at Oxford can be seen here in the FoG:R Wiki.
The Royalists were chosen as I'd taken Parliamentarians and Scots to this event in previous years, and also because the Royalists could use Commanded Shot, which have seen a material change in how they are represented in the game with the proposed amendments - changing from a 2-base stand-alone unit to a marker attached to a unit of Horse. I liked the idea of this change, and had already made some markers - so I wanted to use them!
The first opponent was also a Later Royalist force - let's call them the Pretender King - and they were similar to mine of course, but with no commanded shot and with some better armoured mounted. With pre-set terrain the battlefield was a little cluttered, with a village in the middle of the table and some other bits and bobs. Infantry in the centre and a stacked right wing seemed the appropriate way to deploy in this, an election year... so that's what I did.
With a big open space on the right my Cavaliers deployed to wait for the enemy assault. A flank march was also rumbling through the Oxfordshire countryside on this flank, so if it arrived in good time it would fall like wolves on the end of the enemy line.
Rule Changes: Commanded Shot become a marker, not a separate unit, which helps every base in the unit it is attached to. Horse with Shotte slow to 3MU, and cannot initiate a charge without losing the Shotte marker (and it's benefit). The in-game effect is basically the same as before - and it can still shoot with one die
As Ray looked on with a degree of disdain and puzzlement he normally only reserves for post-closing-time Indian restaurant menus featuring Tandoori fried trout, the enemy started to sweep forward on my left flank with their dragoons quickly occupying the terrain as my Pike and Shotte units looked on with alarm.
On the opposite flank the Pretender King's Horse were pushing up, but their foote had gotten spread out trying to avoid the field. This created an opening for the Loyal Royalists, and the All-Medium-Foote Firelock unit combined with a normal Pike & Shotte formation to creep forward and gang up on some of the enemy Pike and Shotte.
A 17th century Catchers Mitt had been constructed by now, and the Pretender was pushing his men into it as if they were a baseball aiming to land in the bleachers. The flank march had yet to arrive....
Rule Changes: The "overrunning Gunnes" rule that we've all been playing now is officially part of the rules
The opposite flank was much less complex. A solid line of enemy inched forward as the Loyalist Royalists attempted to be wider than the Pretenders formation. No-one had yet started to suffer damage as paltry shot clattered at long range against breastplates
Concentrating 2 units on 1 had achieved the desired effect on the right flank, and the Pretenders Regimente of Foote were now in full retreat. A huge gap opened in their lines, freeing my Pike and Shotte unit to wheel outwards and support the approaching Cavalier battle and leaving the Firelocks to try to deal with enemy on their own
The Cavalier battle was resolving itself in double-quick time, as two units of the Pretender's forces washed up against the shores of three units of the Loyal Kings men - the result had been a rout for half of the Pretenders men, and now jubilant Loyalist cavaliers were ditching their Commanded Shotte and racing forward into the rear echelons - the flank march had still not arrived....
The rest of the Loyalist Horse took up the offensive as the morale of the Pretenders men collapsed in a series of failed tests as shattered and routing units ploughed through and past each other.
Rule Changes: Having 'Better Armour' is now worth the same as a morale grade in terms of combat advantage, which is roughly half a POA. This really helps the unarmoured Cavalier, Louis IV and Swedish Horse types who were poorly served by the previous rules
Much battered by their earlier victories, my cavaliers flooded forward in ever-decreasing numbers seeking a decisive blow against the shocked but still mostly intact enemy. The flank march had still failed to arrive by now and time was fast running out for it to have any effect.
With the two sides still locked in combat, time was called on the first V2.0 FoGR game of the dad - a narrow winning draw for my men on the back of a Cavalier-led victory on the right flank.
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 Later Royalist Commander
A Victory! For me and for the new rules - much like my policy on cake, which is pro having it and pro eating it as well! Admittedly I may have gotten some things wrong - I'm pretty sure my Cavaliers charged and kept their Commanded Shotte, but this wasn't entirely clear in the FAQ so away we go!
This victory was positively Churchillian in it's greatness - although I myself would say that I usually have as much in common with Churchill as I do a three toed sloth, so perhaps that does not do me much good. In any case the main aim here was to try and play the game as if I was unaware of the rules - not that hard to do - and just do things properly, hence the massed Cavalier charge trying to win by weight of numbers on one flank, and presumably the fending in the centre too.
I loved leading the line in such a Cavalier fashion, in much the same way as I love tennis - with a passion. I challenged Boris Becker to a match once and he said he was up for it but he never called back. I bet I could make him run around, and I made these unloyal Royalist run around too!
The new armour rules were a bit tricky to work out, but I'm sure we will get there in the end, and the greater resilience of Ordinary troops had little negative effect too - by the time they are at half strength they always seem to be Fragged or Broken anyway so off they go. Tally Ho!
Hannibal's Post Match Analysis
Sire you are naught but a pale shadow of a loiter-sack, good for nothing but braying false heresies for your own personal gain to sway the ill-educated peasants of your manor. I think they see right through your foppish foolishness, as I myself did here too.
How can you design an army list with a plan to make a flank march, and then fail to include a mid-tier General to give them the +1 to the arrival roll you doltish cumberworld? After realising that you still sent 2 units away off the table, ne'er to be seen again!
Looking at the troops you had left though, one may think that there are too many discounts being proposed for Horse at the moment, as their numbers were beyond even my ability to count - I am in fact surprised not to have seen images of you with socks in hand, pointing at your own toes to tot up the number of regiments you put to the field today
I think all in all this is a good day to be a soldier - if only the brave men in your command were not led by a smell-feast such as yourself. I hope they will take matters into their own hands in the next game
Click here for the report of the next game in this competition