DBA Visigoths vs Franks

I’ve been very busy playing General Bellegarde in a War of the Second Coalition (Napoleonic) campaign, so I’ve not been to the Nunawading Wargames Association for a while, but last Friday I had a few games of DBA with Andrew. Andrew brought along his Middle Franks (list III/5b) while I used my Sub Roman British as Later Visigoths (II/82b) by adding in some Slavic bowmen and psiloi. The Middle Franks had a cavalry General, a knight, 6 x spears, 3 x warband, and a psiloi. The Visigoths had a knight general, 2 x cavalry, a light horse, 4 x spears, 2 x bows, and 2 x psiloi.

Andrew's Franks

Andrew’s Franks

The first game involved Andrew and I using the armies we’d brought along. My Visigoths were defending (they defended in all three games we played, thanks to Clovis being an aggressive chap). I chucked down the obligatory road, and a bit of bad going – a steep hill and a wood.

The setup for the first game, with half my army jammed up against a steep hill.

The setup for the first game, with half my army jammed up against a steep hill.

For some reason I thought that I would be able to squeeze my mounted troops through between the left flank of my line and the steep hill. That was not to be and Andrew had me closed down pretty quickly.

The Franks close in on the somewhat constricted Visigoth army.

The Franks close in on the somewhat constricted Visigoth army.

Andrew’s knights, somewhat bravely considering the possibility of suffering a quick kill, took on my light horse at 2 to 0 and won. That enabled him to start coming around my flanks. My combat dice were rather poor, I had some fairly good matchups in the ensuing melee, such as my knight general attacking unsupported spearmen, but all I managed was to destroy an element of Frankish warband. The psiloi supported spear on the left of my line in the picture below put up an epic defence, but in the end Frankish knights came around behind them.

Nearing the end of the battle, the Frankish knights about to clean up some Visigothic skirmishers.

Nearing the end of the battle, the Frankish knights about to clean up some Visigothic skirmishers.

We swapped armies for the second game. Andrew asked if there was some reason in the rules why I always put a piece of terrain in a couple of corners, so just to mix things up we diced for terrain placement using the system in DBA 3.0, and both pieces of bad going ended up in one corner. My setup was even more constricted.

The Franks set up in a defile.

The Franks set up in a defile.

I used the road to move most of my infantry forward quickly, so I was able, pretty much, to deploy into line. Both sides doubled up our spears where we could. In the first round of combat, most of my line ended up recoiled, leaving a couple of elements rather vulnerable.

The Frankish army is pushed back

The Frankish army is pushed back

Sure enough, with the aid of overlap and quick kill Andrew’s general was able to destroy an Sp and its Ps support. Feeling pretty clever I pulled a couple of spear elements off the rear ranks and attacked the now double overlapped Visigoth general…

Vengeful Franks attack the Visigoth general

Vengeful Franks attack the Visigoth general

That attack succeeded, and I also put paid to both Visigoth bow elements, but disaster struck when I lost a doubled up group of warband, meaning that I lost the game by four elements to two plus the general.

An emptied battlefield

An emptied battlefield

As usual my notes, pictures, and recollection of the last game of the evening are a little sketchy. We kept the same terrain and diced for who got which army, and I had the Franks again.

Here is the situation a couple of turns in.

The third game of the night: the Franks head toward the Visigoth line.

The third game of the night: the Franks head toward the Visigoth line.

I went to take the hill so I could turn the Visigoth flank. Shortly afterwards I learned that bows on hilltops are another thing that warband aren’t very good at fighting, and I pulled my last remaining warband out after an unsuccessful fight. Meanwhile on the other flank my knights, with overlap support, took on the Visigoth light horse, which was isolated, at 4 to 1, and lost thanks to a 1-5 dice result. I can’t remember what the last Frankish element to go was, but it was all over pretty quickly.

I had fun with the games, and now I’ve got quite a few complete armies I’m looking forward to painting a few elements here and there so that I can explore different armies and periods like this.

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2 responses to “DBA Visigoths vs Franks

  1. Interesting games. In DBA 3.0 you can be in contact with your opponent very fast; there’s often no time to adjust deployment, especially if you’re facing fast foot!

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