A busy night of DBA at Nunawading

Friday was the first meeting of the year at the Nunawading Wargames Association, and it was a busy one, with lots of players and onlookers.

There is usually only one DBA game going on in a given evening but on Friday Matt’s Teutonic Knights (IV/30) and Hundred Years War English (IV/62) (not sure they were Matt’s actually) were slugging it out all night under the command of a variety of generals. Bad luck and stout English yeomanry meant that the Teutonics failed to win a single game.

Meanwhile, another player, John, had brought along a number of armies in a very useful looking drawer / carrying case combo. I didn’t get a chance to look at them but I was excited to see what looked like Tuaregs. John decided to use Gauls (II/11) as the closest he had to a historical matchup for my Lydians (I/50).

I was the defender, and I put down a fair bit of terrain – a steep hill and two woods pieces. I decided to put the hill toward the centre of the board – just for a bit of fun. I had a wood in my setup area, which I put most of my auxillia in. I suppose I could have set up a bit to the left to make it easier to move the auxillia but I reasoned that it woudn’t take too many PIPs to get them out. John ended up with both the hill and wood in his setup area, and placed the bulk of his troops in the defile between them.

The Lydians await the Gallic onslaught

Closeup of the Lydians

John was unlucky with his PIPs, and never really got out of the defile. I moved my infantry forward and had moved one of my my Lydian knight elements and both Paphlagonian light horse to face the Gallic cavalry, and another 3Kn and my general (I chose a knight general for this game) to the centre where they could intervene on either flank if needed, or stop any Gallic warband from leaking through along the hill. With a roll of two PIPs, John nobly decided to role play impetuous Gauls and charge in with with what foot he had on the flat, rather than waiting for a PIP roll that would allow him to use some warband that were on the hill. John recoiled one of my 3Ax but the rest of his 3Wb were repelled, and his 2Ps remained locked in combat with the 3Ax on my right flank. I moved a 2Ps in to close the door on them, and my general moved in to provide overlap support against the warband that had won it’s combat, meaning that it was double-overlapped. I doubled John in both combats, and because John’s general was providing rear rank support, he was destroyed too, so that was game over. John regretted putting his general in the rear rank.

There was enough time left for me to use my Early Hungarians (III/67b) against Matt’s other (he has two, which form part of a Field of Glory army) Teutonic Orders army. Once again I was defending, and I placed a couple of gentle hills and a patch of rough ground.

I deployed my infantry on one flank, and a couple of groups of mounted troops on the other, my knights and general in reserve. Matt set up a big scary group of mounted troops facing mine, his infantry in a group slightly behind them, and a unit of light horse as a kind of mounted forlorn hope on his left flank.

Situation after the Teutonic Orders' first turn

Closeup of the Hungarians

I moved my infantry forward to block Matt’s light horse, while lacklustre PIPs stopped me from doing anything much with my mounted troops. My bowmen did a good job of harrying Matt’s knights, but first blood went to Matt with a 6-1 archery shoot on one of my Slavic 4Sp. By that time, Matt’s mounted troops had come up. His knights killed one of my light horse which had been unsuccessful in their attack on one of Matt’s units, and  my knights fell to a 6-1 in a one to one fight. I destroyed one of Matt’s knights by shooting and (I don’t remember how) somehow destroyed his cavalry. The picture below shows the somewhat confused tactical situation before my final PIP roll, with losses at a nailbiting 3-2 to Matt.

We're surrounded! But so are they...

I moved my two remaining light horse to attack Matt’s, with one ‘closing the door’, and my general attacked Matt’s with one of my bow in flank support. Pleasingly I won – destroying both elements.

I wonder what might have happened if I’d used a conventional deployment of infantry in the centre and cavalry on the flanks – would it have made a difference to the result?

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