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Thursday, 28 April 2011

Hail Caesar First Game Report - Hittites vs New Kingdom Egyptians

Ramses II exhorts his troops




Egyptian divisional commander signals the advance




Last night Craig and I played our first ancients game with the new Hail Caesar rules. It was a small game of two divisions a side, Hittites against New Kingdom Egyptians. Fortunately Craig has played a fair bit of Black Powder and I've played a couple of games as well so this helped, although the rules are well set out and it is easy to find the relevant sections for most things.

The game played well as this was our first attempt we had to check the rules quite a bit but it didn't slow things down unduly. Ramses and Muwatallis took opposing divisions and most of the stats for the game were straight from the Kadesh scenario (pp.112 - 119). The game started with the chariot squadrons on both flanks quickly engaging and some of the infantry advancing in support. On the Egyptian right the elite Hittite three crew chariots pushed back and then broke the Egyptian chariots advancing to repeat the treatment on the hapless Egyptian archers and Nubian skirmishers.

The Egyptian mace-axemen on this flank charged the Hittite spearmen and forced them and their supports to give ground repeatedly until they were driven off the table edge. Judicious use of supports in combat seems to be critical for success as they can tip the balance but has attendant risks as supports also have to take break test if the unit they are supporting breaks. Supports can be on either flank of the unit and to the rear as well and this seems to work like overlaps and rear support in DBA. At this point in the game both these divisions had lost more than half their units and retired marching from the field.


Egyptian mace-axemen screened by Nubian skirmishers
Egyptian spearmen and more Nubian skirmishers

Meanwhile on the Egyptian left flank the allied Hittite chariots, the Maryannu were broken by the Egyptian chariots and these made a sweeping advance into a unit of Hittite spearmen. A protracted struggle ensued which left the Hittites disordered and the Egyptian chariots victorious but shaken. At this point the Egyptian chariots were ordered to retreat as they were too badly mauled to remain in combat. We were unsure if this was allowed in the rules but agreed it seemed reasonable given the chariots had won the combat and had greater mobility.


Hittite allied Maryannu chariots

A unit of Egyptian archers, sniffing the scent of victory, then charged the almost shaken Hittite spearmen but the combat resulted in a draw with Hittites shaken and disordered and the Egyptian archers also shaken. At this point in the game both of these divisions were on the verge of breaking but it had ended in a bloody draw. All in all it was a fun and fast game and while we probably got a few things wrong it didn't detract from our enjoyment. Thanks to Craig for a fun game and we're already eyeing off the Battle of Brunanburgh scenario!

Egyptian chariots fight Hittite chariots with the support of archers to no avail
Hittite spearmen advance screened by Aramaean slingers

Egyptian mace-axemen and Hittite spearmen fight it out

Thursday, 21 April 2011

Auxiliaries and Marines

Warlord Games and Black Tree Designs - Western Auxiliary archers
Black Tree Designs and Tin Soldier - Auxiliary cavalry
Warlord Games - Auxiliary infantry
Warlord Games - Balearic slingers
Warlord Games - Marines


Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Babylonian Chariots



Babylonian chariots from King Hammurabi's army (1792-1750 BC) - brilliant figures by Cutting Edge Miniatures.









Friday, 8 April 2011

Early Imperial Roman Auxiliaries

The Early Imperial Roman army is always popular with ancient wargamers and it's an army I really like playing with, having had quite a bit of luck with over time. The auxiliaries provided invaluable support to the legions and are pretty tough troops in their own right. I've taken a few new photos of my auxiliaries and will post  more shortly, as I complete units. All the shields have LBM transfers.

Black Tree Designs and Warlord Games - Western Auxiliary Archers

Black Tree Designs - Auxiliary Infantry
Imago Militis - Auxiliary Infantry
Black Tree Designs - Auxiliary Infantry

Saturday, 2 April 2011

Achaemenid Persian cavalry

Here are some photos of the cavalry:
Scythian horse archers

Minifigs, Tin Soldier and Vendel - Persian Cavalry
Old Glory, Vendel and Tin Soldier - Persian Heavy Cavalry

Old Glory, Foundry, Newline, Essex and Tin Soldier - Persian Cavalry
Hinchliffe and Essex - Persian Levies

Early Achaemenid Persian infantry

I've had an Early Achaemenid Persian army for quiet a while but have only recently got round to taking photos of it. Some of the figures are really old and include Minifigs, Hinchliffe and Greenwood & Ball. I also have unpainted, some of the lovely Immortal Miniatures Persians and I'm really looking forward to the release of their plastic Persian sparabara.

Four great books on this subject worth checking out, in no particular order, are The Greco-Persian War by Peter Green, The Achaemenid Persian Army by Duncan Head, Shadows in the Desert: Ancient Persia at War by Dr Kaveh Farrokh and, of course, Herodotus' Histories (the Landmark edition is really nice even if you already have the Penguin paperback).

Here are a few photos of the infantry:

Greenwood and Ball, Hinchliffe and Old Glory - Immortals

Vendel - Egyptian Marines

Vendel and Old Glory - Persian Sparabara

Minifig and Newline - Persian Slingers


Friday, 1 April 2011

First Post - Sassanid Elephant

I'm starting my ancients wargaming blog (on April Fool's Day!) so that my photos of various armies are all in one place rather than scattered around on forums. I've posted quite a bit in the Display Cabinet of the Rum's Corps Tavern forum:

http://ozwargaming.com/index.php

I hope to add old photos, take new ones and add entirely new figures as I paint and photograph them.


First up is an A&A Sassanid elephant. I have a large Sassanid army but have only finished a single elephant so far!