Wednesday, August 4, 2010

8-9 July 2010 Historicon Warhammer Ancients Tournaments (Doubles Results)

Warhammer Ancients Doubles Tournament
Despite not teamed up in advance with anyone in the doubles event, I was confident that other singletons would be in attendance, with whom I could form an ad hoc alliance.  Indeed, I was matched upon my arrival to the event with Adam Hughes, fielding a Han Chinese army made up of four units of crossbows, four of spearmen, and seven heavy chariots -- plus general and battle standard on horse.  Despite some lackluster contributions on my part, the Nubian/Chinese tag-team still placed a respectable 6th out of 16 total teams.

Adam's Han Chinese force.  Hard to make out clearly in this picture is his fourth unit of crossbows,
which are in ranks in the center of his line, just back of the other crossbows.

Game One: Me and Adam (Han Chinese) vs Paul Georgian (Macedonians) and Duncan McFarlane (Sassanids)

Adam and I win the game, largely as a result of Paul’s horrific bad luck with the dice (every single one of his pike units broke and ran from combat from Adam’s Chinese spearmen!).  The Sassanids, on the other hand, totally had my number – Duncan’s three units of bow-equipped, drilled cavalry were doing a number to my poor elephants, but at the end of the game he got a bit reckless with one unit of cavalry, assaulting one of my infantry blocks.  Unfortunately for Duncan, the cavalry flubbed the assault, lost the combat, and were run down (by infantry!), and the resulting points-differential meant that the Sassanids ended up in a points deficit to my Nubians as well.

Paul's glorious Macedonian pikes, doing everything exactly according to plan.
This is shortly before ALL FOUR UNITS turn and flee from Chinese spearmen.

Seems pretty self-explanatory, no?  I call this one "Last Stand of the Nubian Cavalry".

Game Two: Me and Adam (Han Chinese) vs Phil Pournelle (Heraclian-era Byzantines) and Mike Bates (Nanda Kingdom Indians)

A relatively miserable showing for the elephants, who faced drilled cavalry (again) and nomadic cavalry, which just danced and danced all game long – I think I managed to trap and kill just one unit of cavalry, and a few skirmishers.  The Byzantines peppered my elephants with bowfire, resulting in all three of them stampeding, and then jumped on my supporting block of infantry, which had gotten far too close to their lines.  I re-discovered that basic spearman blocks (without any special rules) really can’t stand up to multi-assaults, unlike phalanxes or pikes.  Ouch, said I, after losing nearly half my army.  Were it not for Adam’s Chinese forces beating up Mike’s Indian forces at range (using 40 crossbows), it would have been a sizable loss rather than just a tie game for our team.

Nubians advancing en masse against Byzantines.  The Byzantines have a skirmish screen
and Nomadic Cavalry in front of units of Drilled infantry and medium cavalry.  Ick.

A closeup of the above picture.  No-one was exactly sure what Mike was doing here.
But on the face of it, it looks like his chariots (his only hard-hitting non-Elephant unit)
are busy running AWAY from the battle as fast as possible.

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