perjantai 9. maaliskuuta 2018

FIRST GAME OF SAGA 2 & REVIEW

And the 5th Game of our Limes Campaign 

Last Romans vs. Germanic People

Our club’s Saga players gathered again for another Saga Games Night, but this time it was a special: first go with Saga 2.0
Last Romans (me) faced Germanic People in 5th year game of our Limes Campaign (Rome currently leading 15-8 vs. Barbarians). Other games were Saracens vs. Normans (playing Crusaders) and Vikings vs. Scots. A full battle report on my game and conclusions on how we all felt about Saga 2.0 follows...


Luckily I had a mighty force of Romans facing the threat:

* 5 Mounted HG with composite bows
* 4 Mounted HG
* 14 warriors
* 18 warriors with bows
* 9 levies with javelins
* Manuballista (not a Last Romans factions choise, but from the campaign assets)
* 8 warhounds (mercenaries)

Germanic people attacked me with:

* Boosted Warlord (as per Limes Campaign options)
* 3 units of warriors
* 12 mounted HG's in 2 units of 6 HG

For this I had taken some unfinished Dark Age cavalry models (Foundry) for further painting,  didn't quite manage to finish them, but now they're in the pipeline. Here are some pictures of them:













Scenario

When Mikko asked to borrow some DA Cavalry, I knew we would play the killing scenarion, instead of the standard "run through" -scenario.


Deployment

I had to deploy first, so deployed my power base in the middle, only the ballista and a unit of 4 warriors to guard it ti the right flank, and few units to the left flank. Hounds (mercenaries) were left in reserve to respond to any deployment tricks the barbarians might try to pull...

Mikko deployed heavily to his right flank, but did deploy 2 unist - including one of the HG units to face my ballista in the extreme left. This was very surprising, because there were very little slaughtering points there to gain and he risked loosing men to my ballista. At least he screened his cavalry wisely with warriors.

My plan was to quickly move to the central forest with my archers in the middle - to be both protected from cavalry charges OR to lure cavalry or other chargers into the woods with "Protect" -ability.





Start of the battle

So I got to start and I let looseissa with my shooting; ballista churned out to bursts of bolts, archers in the right took positions behind the difficult terrain (traps) and my monted HG made a hit and run attack with their composite bows. Several barbarians fell, but maybe not enough... I also DIDN’T move any units to the forest, as I had planned...



End of first Roman turn on both flanks



Besides the ”Protect” ability, I also left this for Mikko’s turn...

It’s 8 attack dice I can use, max 4 per melee...


First wave charges...



Enemy sighted! Barbarian warriors pushed forward...


These barbarians were steered away from my HG with “Protect” and they got to taste some “Strategos” too!



After another charge to my archers (Barbarians clearly hated them!) the cavalry surged forward - facing my levies... oh dear!


Mid game


My levies survived a charge from the enemy WL and on my turn hounds arrived to charge and fatigue the enemy HG. My WL attacked enemy warriors, boosted with extra attacks from “Strategos”, and sought to avenge the archers, but few enemies were left alive... a Saga dice at least was denied!


My HG charged into the enemy HG, whom now had couple of fatigues, thanks to my hounds, and slew several of them, only two remained now! The Germanic army seemed to be in tatters now and  their Warlord practically stranded...


In the middle of the battlefield I had to pay dearly for the fact, that I had not moved my archers to the woods, as the other Germanic HG cavalry unit charged them and slew most of them! Here my Strategos proved very useful as I was also able to take out 5/6 of them HG's! Huzzah for the humble archer!


My extreme right flank stayed very passive after the first round... 

Decisive moments

My 5 HG had moved to pepper the enemy HG with some arrows and were feeling confident as my Romans were clearly outnumbering the enemy...


To my shock mere 6 barbarian warriors slaughtered them all without losing a single men themselves!!!

So suddenly what had looked like a certain victory looked almost grim now! I had to sacrifice my poor doggies to save my exhausted Warlord from being charged by the Barbarian WL. My warrior unit in the middle had dispatched the lone HG, but they were now too far to help in the decisive moments of the battle!


Saga dice on both sides had dwindled rapidly in this massacre. I still had 4 to use (generated 9 in the beginning of the game). Sacrifice of my dogs wasn't going to be for nothing! I rested my warlord and charged the Barbarian one with 2 fatigues (or was he even exhausetd). This and the benefit of extra attacks from Strategos  gave me the edge to finish him off! I lovered his armour to 4 and raised mine to 6... not a fair fight, but desperate times demand desperate actions!  


My heroic warlord them proceeded to finish off the one final enemy HG and remnants of a warrior unit. Epic deeds indeed!


My warriors in the meanwhile decimated the other barbarian warriors and the left flank was now totally cleared of enemies. On the right flank my ballista shot again after 3 rounds of doing nothing and took out few more barbarian warriors. With this last insult the battle was over..



Terrible losses on both sides!
After rolling for survival, I lost 4 HG, 6 warriors and 4 levies. This was very dramatic compared to my previous campaign game, where my losses (after rolling for survival) was 1 warrior and 1 levy!

Our score in Slaughtering points was
Romans 35p
Germanic People 29,333p

Conclusions


The Battle


  • Narrow victory to Rome - Roma Victrix!
  •  I had a good plan, but partially failed to implement it; I was too keen to shoot on the first round instead of moving my archers in to the forest
  • This costed me a lot as the barbarians naturally targeted my soft shooters in their early charges. If I had been in the woods, their cavalry would probably not have attacked there
  • This leads me to think - should I use less shooting warriors and prepare for a fight with my Romans?
  • Mikko placed 2 of his units facing my ballista in the extreme left of his deployment zone, this was a mistake as there were very few points to be one
  • This gave me an opportunity to put pressure on his right flank...
  • These odds didn't stop him from charging right in and wreaking terrible havoc amongst my lines! His dice were also rolling nicely! 
  • Last Romans doesn't seem to be very powerful faction. 
    • Defense and Protect are good abilities to mess the enemy's plans
    • Strategos is excellent
    • Most of the other melee abilities are not cheap compared to their effects
  • Excellent game!

Saga 2.0 


  •  Warlords with their 8 attacks really are a force to reckon now - with my Srategos-ability I fought twice with 12 attacks on my WL!
  • One must be careful in spending enemy WL fatigue in the melee, as this will give them the opportunity to take F to cancel wounds. 
  • Movement is now very straightforward and this is good. didn't slow the game down at all
  • We were not using too many melee abilities, so didn't really see much of tactics played in the new way of using abilities and fatigue
  • Too may F were the doom of HQ units as their armour was dropped dramatically
  • Levies with javelins are OK, but nothing dramatic
  • Tried mounted HG with composite bows... not convinced. 
  • We didn't forget too many of the new rules ;-)
  • We like Saga 2.0!

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