Wednesday, 12 October 2016

Song of Spear and Shield vs Dragon Rampant Crashing Chariots and Stampeding Spiders

Dragon Rampant vs Song of Spear & Shield.

There are times, oh my hoopy droogs, when wargaming allows me to appear extremely clever. There are other times where even your steamed narrator is forced to slap forehead (sometimes even his own!) and say Doh! A lot.

This is such a time. Frequent pursuers of the forbidden knowledge will remember our dragon wam rampant comparison series. For others pop down to January16.

For some reason I left Song of Spear and shield orf the list. In my defence it's intended as a large scale ancient skirmish set, not a set of fantasy rules. But I'd point out that DR is also such adapted.

In the last game we diced for each figure.  Here we dice for the unit.

This is the Dragon Rampant list:
Japanese.                           DR                        SoSS    Morale
+ Goblin Leader (1 figure)                                 78          15       15
Goblin light foot                   3 (12 figures)       240           2       24
+Goblin light foot                 3 (12 figures)       240           2       24
Goblin light missiles             4 (12 figures)       225           2       24
Spiders lesser warbeasts       4 (6 figures)         180           3       18
Mounted Goblin                   4 (6 figures)          180           3       18
Oni greater warbeasts           8 (3 figures)          171           6         18
Spiders heavy riders             4 (3 figures)          243           8         24
                         Total 23                    1,542                    164 = 55 BECOMES SHAKEN

55 models, max unit size (1/3) 18, so 6 Goblins can form a guard and the rest a unit of 18.

Goblin Leader
Points 78
Quality 4+
Combat 2
Special Rules
Armor 3, Hero, Leader, Sword

Goblin Naginata
Points 20
Quality 5+
Combat 2
Special Rules
Terrifying Charge, Two Handed Weapon

Goblin Bow
Points 15
Quality 5+
Combat 2
Special Rules
Bow: Short

Mounted Goblin
Points 30
Quality 5+
Combat 2
Special Rules
Bow: Short, Long Move, Mounted: Light Horse

Spiders Small
Points 30
Quality 5+
Combat 3
Special Rules
Dashing, Mounted: Pony, Sword, Terrifying Charge

Points 57
Quality 4+
Combat 4
Special Rules
Armor 3, Axe, Dashing, Long Move, Slow

Spiders Big
Points 81
Quality 4+
Combat 3
Special Rules
Armor 2, Dashing, Long Move, Mounted: Warhorse, Terrifying Charge, Two Handed Weapon

Fortunately we'd done the chariot testing in March 15 so I had these mostly done.

Achaean                    DR                    SoSS        Morale
Spearmen light foot     3 (12 figures)   384                3    36
light foot javelin          4 (12 figures)   396                3    36
skeleton light foot       3 (12 figures)   108                0    00
archers                        4 (12 figures)   276                2    24
Satyr & amazon scouts 2 (6 figures)    27                 3      9
Chariots heavy riders   6 (3 figures)    330             11    22
+ upgrade Ch to Heroic Leader             30             17    17
                          Total 23                 1,551             189 /3 = 63 BECOMES SHAKEN

57 models so max unit size 19. As they're different types there's nothing to play with here, although the leader can be separated.

Points 32
Quality 4+
Combat 2
Special Rules
Pavise, Spear, Sword
Early spearman with tower shield

Points 33
Quality 4+
Combat 2
Special Rules
Javelin, Pavise, Sword
Javelin with tower shield

Points 9
Quality 6+
Combat 2
Special Rules
Expendable, Shield, Spear

Points 23
Quality 4+
Combat 2
Special Rules
Bow: Short
archer skirmisher

Points 9
Quality 4+
Combat 1
Special Rules
Javelin, Wavering
Satyr & Amazon scouts

Points 110
Quality 3+
Combat 2
Special Rules
Armor 3, Chariot: Light, Expert Charioteer, Long Move, Spear, Sword
Dendle armoured hero with spear

I failed totally to keep track of losses. Here's the final score
Japanese.                    Loss Morale loss 
Goblin Leader                    0
Goblin light foot                6     12
Goblin light foot              11     22
Goblin light missiles         2       4
Spiders lesser warbeasts   3       9
Mounted Goblin               3       9
Oni greater warbeasts       0
Spiders heavy riders         0
55 BECOMES SHAKEN  Total loss 56!

Achaean                 Loss Morale Losses
Spearmen light foot  7       21
light foot javelin       4       12
skeleton light foot  12       00
archers                     3         6
Satyr scouts             6       18
Chariots                   0          
Ch to Heroic Leader 0
Total 57   -  51 BECOMES SHAKEN

The Game

So at the end of the day and in the back of the net-. The Japanese became disordered first, quickly followed by the Achaeans. I had my chariots in his real but, he has his 2 remnant beast/light cavalry on hand and I had nothing to hit his two heavy units.

Hang on, rewind, start at the beginning. I had the Achaean’s. My set up was fairly normal, although I kept my skirmishers and chariots back. The throw away skellies were dead centre as a “come on”. It was my intention to use the javelin as a corridor to interpenetrate and hit Tony in the valuables.

Tony set up fairly standard but with his heavies in the centre backed up with archers, a sort of tactical reserve. Light cavalry (goblins) get an extra move at the start of each move and Tony used it to move in on my javelins, followed up by the left naginata. Thankfully I held and the cavalry retired.

I advanced my skirmishers in front of my spear, which proved too tempting to his spiders and they pounced and trounced. I advanced my spear and slapped them. Bit of luck, I'd expected them to slap my flank or rear. My archers and the naginata started a long ding-dong battle. By keeping in touch I managed to avoid their terrifying charge.

Slowly, slowly approached the Oni, mostly using reactions. They grind into my spear. With purpose the large spiders latch on to my skeletons. War horse mounted get a free hack on turnover and my skellies crumbled.

I'd expected an end-run from one or other of his light cavalry so I'd kept my chariots back. Here it comes and I send them in, pushing their lighter foes tumbling. With those flung back I started on the naginatas. I lose one charioteer. Eggshells armed with hammers.

By now my centre has disappeared and on my right my javelin reform, faced with the big spiders. Tony's hero leader goes against mine, killing a horse. I break free, but my now hampered leader is faced by the 2 remnant cavalries-.

I lost, but it was Pyrric to say the least. The spiders and Oni worked very well. A good fast game, much superior to the slow and clunky DR. Andrea! You need to develop this!

Spiders take the bait.

I had intended to strike through one of the light units with my chariots if no end run occurred.

Leaders view

Chariot wheels skirt with oblivion!

I had a centre----

Leader vs leader

Chariot veers off having lost the charioteer

My leader now seperated has cavalry behind him.

Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Song of Spear and Shield. A Japanese Monastery Raid

Blazing Naginatas at dawn.

In some respects this is a rerun of our April 15. The first, home, side is identical. I went into quite an in-depth look at the rules in that article, so if you want more let your appendages do the walking.

I must stress that there is many a muckle before the beam. We are using beta version 3.3 which is a couple of years old now. We think its pretty workable or we wouldn't keep playing it. When Tony proposed this game I had to think: Battlesworn, Flying Lead or Flashing Steel?

I had this notion that there was a gap in the library and the market. There's several largish fantasy games out there, but they are all pretty poor quality. All yougoigo and lots of stats and dice rolling aimed at the players who have little or no experience of a decent game!

So this one is a dust the cobwebs off game. The next will be a rerun of a game we did several times to test Dragon  Rampant. The third will be a big bits to the wall all-out grind of a Japanese fantasy game to test the rules until they squeal!

400 points is a small game, this one is 572, a large is 800. Next is 1,542. So big is going to be 2,000. Ish.

The plot is this. The leader is heading somewhere with a small bodyguard. There is a guard force available and peasants from the village will assemble at the alarm. They will be expected to line up for the progression, but not to be armed in any way.

Here's something you haven't seen for a while, my old Purbec Terrain. Most of this is 30-odd years old. Back in the day it was the best available and the only one I know of where the tiles are reversable. Very close observers will see a change in the room with the return of furniture from our shop. The table is an oak campaign table that has graced shop and attended pirate events.

The Home Side
“Accountant” (single figure) Q3 C3, Armoured 3, Leader, Sword @ 84 (M*8+6=14)
4 warrior monk bodyguards & 8 guards with naginata's C4, C2, impetus, 2 handed weapon @ 30 (M3)
2x8 peasants with bamboo spears Q5, C1 (untrained civilians with some enthusiasm)spear @ 8 (M1)
Points 572 29 models, so max size unit 10 Morale =66 break 22
(Impetus gives a +1Q in first bound only) (M= Morale points)
Attacking Side. Last time I had a more sedate, armoured side. This time I'm going for a more aggressive force:
“Patron” (single figure or in unit below) Q3 C3, Armoured 3, Leader, Sword @ 84 (M*8+6=14)
2 warrior monk with naginata's Q4, C2, Dashing 2 handed weapon @ 30 (M3)
1 warrior monk with big hammer, Q4, C2, Dashing, mace @ 24 (M2)
1 warrior monk Armour 2 with standard & sword Q4, C2, Dashing@ 51 (M8)
1 warrior monk (single figure) Q4 C2 Longbow, fast shooter, good shot, sword @ 44 (M4)

Boss” Armour 2 sub commander, lead from the front, 2 handed weapon, sword Q4, C3 @ 59 (M9)
2x5 Bandits, Q5 C3 naginata, dashing @ 25 (M3)
Points 572 17 figures, so max size unit 6 Morale =118 break 39
The Game. This is essentially an ambush. My force, the raiders, have got as close as they dare, ready to run out, hit the enemy then run. Sounds simple. But if there's no chance of discovery then it can be a one sided game that's not fun to play. So, there are guards, a guard tower and people milling about. Look at the first scene of Seven Samurai, the whole series of events is sparked by a wood collector overhearing the bandits.

So round one, the Accountant starts walking towards the village. A dice is rolled and a 6. The guards spot something and yell at the accountant and banding the alarm triangle.

Consternation on my part, I get the archer going, a hit at long range sending a peasant reeling and stopping the accountant getting too close for most of the game. I send one bandit mob screaming down the road.  If I could have got these in contact in 1st move, I'd have got +2 ambush plus +1 for being unformed.  Oh well!

Despite being armed only with farm tools the peasants go for the bandits and pile in. They take several casualties but kill a few bandits. Meanstwhile the archer chalks up an impressive bodycount (we lost track but it was 4-5).

Now its time for the monks on both sides to get involved. The defenders squeeze past the peasants and clash with the aggressors. Numbers tell and the smaller unit gets the upper hand. By this time the first bunch of attackers had been isolated. We are both ex-reenactors and can remember fights like these.

The archer works his way forward hoping to get a shot at the accountant. One good shot----.

Now the last unit of bandit finally makes it forward. By the way, on hills using movement bases helps! In fights you may need to move figures on or off, but when your hand doesn't work so well I'm sacrificing look for ease of movement and speed.

Eventually the peasants get pointy bamboo (2 actions near a building) and the plus helps. One group of survivors charge up hill at the archer and take him out (how Kurosawa is that?) The rest engage the bandits while the monks filter in from behind. I'm not sure if this would be allowed, but it looked and felt right. All figures stayed within contact. The armoured bandit leader faced off 4.

The Patron noticed the spearmen on the hill and rushed to take them, one bandit should have followed, but didn't.  The patron goes down, poked to death with sticks!  That breaks my force as I've lost the standard bearer. Tony had lost a lot, but mostly peasants so he wasn't close.

An excellent game, fast (considering its been a while). Everything we needed was recorded on a ¼ of a folded A4 sheet. You get a side advantage to help each be more realistic. I had given the attackers the Ambush advantage, that worked. Tony had the Unyielding, allowing him to ignore 3 wounds. He didn't use them, keeping them for the accountant!

Note the wargaming Elixir, ginger beer without which nothing is possible!

Guards guarding
 Yes yes, the Accountant Comes!

Those on the hill are my dead, not reinforcements!