My good friend and fellow gamer Keith Flint had invited me over for another run out of his 'Trimsos' ancients rules. It had been quite a while since we last played them, but I enjoyed the last game very much, so eagerly accepted the invitation. Keith promised something a little bit different from the standard 'line 'em up and advance to contact' game, which sounded promising.
Ancients battles often look superb, but by and large they never really float my boat due to general parallel nature of the battles. Mind you the same could be said of many 18thC ones. So it was nice to have something a bit more challenging to game over. Keith had chosen a scenario from an old WS&S magazine that I had given him, but tweaked it slightly for an Ancients setting. The forces involved were very much what felt right, rather than any hard and fast OOB etc.
Due to the nature of the game, I didn't take any notes whatsoever, but hopefully the following pics will give an idea of how the game played out.
|The Relief force. Hints of the Teutoburger Wald sprang to mind the minute I saw these.|
|Wonderful Egyptian light charioteers.|
|Some lovely Romans not, for once, with red shields.|
|The Defending force arrayed across the hills.|
|The Relief force advancing through the woods, but immediately set upon from all sides by my skirmishers and warband troops.|
|Pachyderms an absolute must for an Ancients army, plus a carroballista, something new to be but undoubtedly cool.|
|My skirmishers have lured the Relief force light cavalry into the woods, where they would suffer at the hands of my troops.|
|The rear elephant attacked in the flank, which it didn't like at all, leading to it rampaging straight back off the table!|
|The Relief force cataphracts attacked in the rear, but only half of them have been able to react to this.|
|The cataphracts have had to retreat from the combat but are still in good order, being elite troops.|
|Things get a bit messy, with multiple combats going on, but a good test of Keith's rules.|
|The Relief force light cavalry are taking a beating in the woods, being shot at from the front and rear.|
|Meanwhile over on the other side of the table, my skirmishers and light charioteers are whittling down the defenders on the hill, due to some surprisingly good die rolls from me and some poor ones from Keith.|
|With the troops on the hill nicely hemed in, I sent my heavy cavalry to guard the bridge and block any attempt by the Relief force to cross it.|
|The battle rages on at the edge of the woods, but my skirmishers have slowed down the Relief force as well as destroying some of its light cavalry. Oh and the elephant of course.|
|The elephant proves too tempting a target.|
|The Relief forces rear is assaulted and shot at by my skirmishers.|
|The elephant finally breaks trough to the bridge, only for it to succumb to multiple arrows and then rampage off before its mahout puts it out of its misery.|
|As the cataphracts once more are lured into the woods, Keith in the background wonders where it all went wrong...|
Well, even though it was a rather one sided game, it was very enjoyable and the rules worked well. After all having fun whilst playing a game is really what it should all be about. I must admit I like the 'Old School' feel of Keith's rules as well as his terrain and figures. I think as I get older and time seems to get less-and-less for games, I appreciate simplicity in rules more than I did many years ago. During the game, it wasn't quite clear what would happen in certain situations, so we simply chose the most logical outcome. No need to pour over the rulebook and chop back and forth between various pages etc. This was actually quite refreshing, so much so that I may revisit my of my 'Old School' rulebooks and see if there are any that I feel like giving a run out.
In other news as it were, plans continue for several BKCII games and possible campaigns. Certainly I have been busily basing figures and painting armour for this. As the family are away this weekend I hope to be able to get at least one game in, maybe two if i'm lucky. Watch this space...