Britcon FoG Game 4
It was now getting into Saturday Night, and the lager was starting to flow freely through my veins
What a time to take on a Medieval German army. My opponent was also cheating from the off, and had a pint of water rather than beer. It was going to be tough
A large wood protected their flanks, and I settled in looking for a good old frontal heavy metal faceoff.
I was starting to have a little confidence in the "knights in the middle" strategy, as it had almost worked against the Ottomans, so with this aim I pushed forwards as fast as possible. The Germans detached some light horse to find a path through the woods and try and harass my flanks, but I had bowmen and Turcopoles facing them off, so hopefully my advance would be unimpeded
On the right a similar formation was also pushing forward, with my Brother Knights moving out to try and nail some more vulnerable foot as the rest of my line would pin back the mounted wing of the Germans.
Either I was attacking in a classic wedge formation, or the Germans were drawing me into a classic envelopment and trap. What was it to be ?
It had been snowing that day in Germany, and so my Crusaders were starting to get cold feet as they approached the German Offensive Spearmen
My V-shaped formation was creating openings in my line as it stretched both ways - this unusually allowed my unprotected foot archers to move forwards to exchange fire with the German crossbowmen, hoping our superior rate of fire would cause them problems.
On the left, German mounted crossbowmen decided discretion was the better part of valor and skulked back into the woods before my Crossbowmen could train a bead on them
As my solid line of troops advanced on my left, the German Generals were desperately trying to keep their knights under control, and prevent them haring off unsupported into my line of advancing well-braced spearmen.
Unable to contain their enthusiasm, the German knights charged in - my foot soldiers prayed fervently that dice rolling rather than painting skill would prove the decisive factor in the coming combat!
The dice rolling was proving the skill to have over of the right, as the German offensive spearmen failed to make an impact on my defensive spears - who were greatly encouraged by the presence of one of their generals rallying them onwards
Failing time and tie again to break into the robust Crusader formations, the German knights on my left were making repeated charges back into the shieldwall - but as they charged, rallied and charged again, my infantry were also failing to cause any serious losses so their opponents fighting power was not being eroded. Generals were also being drawn to this potentially decisive combat like flies to a 3 day old dead pigeon left out on a warm afternoon (but better painted).
Everything seemed to be going according to plan - but unnoticed by the rest of the army, the crossbow unit protecting my far right flank had been attacked and soundly beaten by a second unit of offensive spearmen and were now in full flight, unlikely to return. A chill as cold as the November snow on the bases of the German foot started to creep into the hearts of my men.
Next in line, despite their initial lack of success the other German spear unit were gradually gaining the upper hand against my spearmen - but were taking serious losses in the process. Who would crack first in the war of attrition?
The answer came from a surprising source, as my Brother Knights, who had charged in rashly to a unit of men at arms and suffered a reverse at the initial combat, found themselves charged in the flank by some more German knights, and panicked and broke - leaving a huge problem for me in the middle of my line! The Arab peasant bowmen were unlikely to be able to fill the hole!
My spearmen continued to push forward on the left, hoping to gain their victory before the right flank collapsed. The Germans were know being whittled away quite seriously, and were nearing defeat. The Germans then unleashed some handgunners from hiding in the woods, but such a small unit of skirmishers was unable to dent the enthusiasm of the armoured spearmen, who pushed onwards regardless
But then a catastrophe! A last ditch German charge smashed my spearmen, who were disconcerted by the presence of the handgunners behind their flank, and my left flank unit fled in rout!
Simultaneously my other spear unit broke the knights they were facing, and pursued forwards - already in some disarray after the protracted combat - and were caught on the run by the victorious Germans who had just routed my own spearmen.
It was a total disaster for the spearmen - managing to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory, my right flank crumbled, joining my left which had imploded as the Brother knights routed through the heart of it, and the game wa sover - a crushing defeat for my small army yet again!
Post Match Analysis
Again a game where I was too aggressive and failed to get my knights into a proper situation to charge in cleanly - and so when I suffered a couple of unlucky reverses I was totally unable to recover and they had a catastrophic knock-on effect on the viability of my army. The rot really set in when my Brother Knights allowed themselves to be charged in the flank - but after they had charged without orders they were in a "win quickly or die" situation!
The spearmen did stand up well initially to the knights on my left, but in a way they fought too well, as the knights were forced to keep breaking off and charging in (as my spear line retained it cohesion). Ultimately the knights superior morale allowed them to continue fighting for long enough to inflict the statistically likely reverse on my spearmen from which they - already being weakened - could not recover. If the knights had been slightly more successful in their initial charge they would have broken into my spear formation and carried on fighting at close quarters rather than breaking off and charging in again. If this had happened they would have been sucked into a war of attrition with my spearmen - which they may well have lost. However instead they saved up their luck for one big hit, and their repeated total failure followed by a singular dramatic success meant they and not my spearmen won the day.View My Stats
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