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DBA at ConQuest '99

By Martin Schmidt

In deciding what game to run for the ConQuest '99 convention I was influenced by Bob Beattie's tournament formats article. Rather than running my standard six player Punic Wars campaign the Pyramid format allowed me to run a campaign style game and make sure everyone was involved in a battle each round.

Since I had only five of the eight armies in Bob's example, I substituted for the Later Macedonian, Hellenistic Greek and Campanians using my Pyrrhic (#43), Syracuse (#34) and Galatian (#45) armies.

I asked players to be honest and allowed the players with less than10 games to choose armies first. Then those with 10 to 20 chose, and so on until all eight were taken. In each block the players rolled a die for pick. I had preset the army options (if any) in order to save some time. We used the v1.2 rules and there where two special house rules.

First round pairings:

#53 Numidia
(4xLH 4xPs El Cv 2xAx)
Player: Doug Warrick

Vs

#31b Later Carthage
(2xCv 2xLH 2xSp 2xAx 2xWb El Ps)
Player: John Rickman
Carthage won 4-0 killing all 4 Numidian LH who tried to get around a flank,got out of command and ran out of pips.
#35 Gallic
(4xCv 6xWb 2xPs)
Player: Alan Staton

Vs

#52 Ancient Spanish
(Cv LH 6xAx 4xPs)
Player: Eric Lindberg
Gaul won 4-2 killing 2 Auxilia and 2 Psiloi and losing 2 Warband. Alan had chosen the bare minimum terrain ( a river crossed by a road) and Eric tired to cross it in the face of the warbands.
#46b Polybian Rome
(2xCv 6xBd 2xSp 2xPs)
Player: Mike Brown

Vs

#34 Syracuse
(2xCv LH 4xSp 2xAx Art 2xPs)
Player: Jim Veach
Syracuse won the day by killing the Roman Cav General, 2 blade and a Psiloi. But it was costly, he lost three stands, 2 Psiloi and an Auxilia.
#45 Galatian
(2xLCh SCh 2xCv 7xWb)
Player: Gary Herman

Vs

#43 Pyrrhic
(Kn Cv LH El 4xPk 2xSp Ax Ps)
Player: Richard Bidlake
There was no "Pyrrhic" victory here as the Galatians won 5-3. They lost both Light Chariots and a warband. The Greeks lost 2 pike, a light horse, a spear and an Auxilia.

Interesting note on this round was that both Warband armies WON!

In the second round I kept to the regional theme.

Carthage/Numidia (20 stands)

vs

Gaul/Spanish (18 stands)
The Barbarians won 6-0. The Numidians lost 4 and the Carthaginians lost 2. Not a warband lost!
Galatian/Pyrrhic (16 stands)

vs

Syracuse/Roman (17 stands)
The Barbarian led army again was victorious winning 6-3. Rome took the brunt of the attack losing 2 blades and 2 spear.

The final round.

Gaul/Spanish/Carthage/Numidia
(32 stands)

vs

Galatian/Pyrrhic/Syracuse/Roman
(24 stands)
The Galatian led armies fought a very defensive battle. Things went against them at first and it looked grim but then the tides turned and it was not just due to dice rolls. Garry did a great job of refusing the left flank as the Numidians and Spanish tried to turn the corner. In fact they started getting in each others way. Both sides reached their breakpoint on the same bound but the Galatian-Rome army had lost 3 of their generals.

At that point, with the players' consent, I called the game a victory for the Gaul/Spanish/Carthage/Numidia alliance.

Side notes:

The Pyrrhic player chose his Knight as his general in each game, but only lost it in the final game.

Despite my having nearly $200 in Scenic Effects dirt road sections, not one player added roads to any of the battlefields.

The Scythed Chariot died in true Celtic glory in every battle!

The Syracusan Arty survived the last battle were it took out both Carthaginian Warbands with ranged fire!

All three Elephants survived the last battle!

Comments/Feedback

From the Emperor of the Gallic Empire! Alan Staton:

(Gallics & allies) won the dice role and selected three panels of terrain. (Marty: I use 2x2 carpet panels with terrain features affixed. Each is a legal DBA battlefield.) On the Gallic left some bad going hills and a couple of patches of small woods; in the center a large bad going hill near the center with two forests on either side.

The rules of set up required the low high dice roller (Galatians & Co.) to set up one army followed by the high dice roller (Gallic & Assoc.), then back and forth until all were placed at which point the Galatian force took the first bound. The Galatian commander set up first and positioned his Romans on the Galatian right (Gallic left). The Gallic commander rubbed his hands in delight, seeing only four stands of Romans, and cried out "I will take the left and be on to Rome! Remember our ancestors and the sack of Rome in the 4th century!" Next the Galatians placed the Pyrrhics on the Romans left to support with pikes, elephant, knight, etc.. The Gallics countered with the small but brave Numidians facing the Pyrrhics and supporting the Gallic right. The Galatians next placed the Syracusans next to the Pyrrhics. The Gallics faced off with the Carthaginians facing Syracuse. Finally the moment of truth, the Galatians took the left of their position to be faced by the Early Spanish.

The overview showed both commanders, Galatians and Gallics were at opposite ends from one another (is this any way to fight a battle?). The Gallics & allies had a clear strength on their right and far left. The Galatians were strongest in the center. Now guess where the Galatian commander launched their attack? Right, the Galatian center moved forward not wanting the Gallics to consume his wings. He forced the Romans and part of his Galatians to refuse their respective wings and wanted to press on in the center, which contained the Gallics camp and baggage. The Gallics not to be out done on this day held the Numidians steady, rode like the wind with his Gallic horse and warbands towards the Romans and ordered a general advance to the Carthaginians and Spanish. It looked bad for the Galatians as the 8-stand advantage and bad terrain should have allowed for a rout. This was not to be! The Romans were holding as were the Galatians and Syracusans. The Pyrrhics moved to press the Gallic camp, then all Hades broke loose. The Gallic spun his horse and took on the Pyrrhic horse and elephant on a mountain ridge. With much effort the Gallics killed the Pyrrhics general knight which helped slow the attack. Meanwhile the Spanish and Carthaginian slew and were slain, but also killed the Galatian and Syracusans generals. At the end of the 7th bound both armies were at their breaking points, the Gallics lost many a stand in relation to the Galatians, but the loss of the generals was took much. The Galatians sued for peace. The Gallics and allies had a fine meal (with good Roman wine to celebrate) and welcomed their worthy adversaries into the Gallic alliance. On to the Far East men!


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Last Update: Sept. 24, 1999

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