Sunday, 29 September 2013

Raid on The Church of St Caradoc the Disappointed: Second Dux Brit Game

The church of Saint Caradoc the Disappointed is the scene of the next raid.
Aelle needs a win. And he needs money. The church should provide gold and silver, but if not brass, lead or even scrap iron will serve to line Aelle’s pocket. His morale is 6, good but not great. His force is up to strength with some good solid lads from across the North Sea. But Arthorius is a canny general and Aelle wonders what tricks he has up his sleeve. 

Arthorius is uneasy. Despite beating off the Saxons near the tower, he knows they will be back. His morale too is 6. He isn’t sure Aelle will fall for the same tricks again, and despite replacing his losses, he feels overstretched.

Aelle drives forward as hard as he can. He takes his two units of Gedricht, his hearthguard, along with his champion and heads for where he expects Arthorius to appear. His archers try to find a good position – they have been told to shape up or ship out after their last showing! Cenric takes one unit of Geoguth warriors, and sticks to Aelle’s flank. Aelle is no longer under any illusion of the power of the British shieldwall, and he is still smarting from the devastating flank attack Arthorius dealt him. He hopes that Cenric will prevent this, or even manage to give Arthorius a taste of his own medicine! Meanwhile Sigebehrt has taken the remaining two groups of Geoguth and is making a beeline for the church. It’s money or nothing for him! Aelle hopes to allow Sigebehrt to retreat rapidly with the loot and use the rest of his force to block Arthorius.

Saxon starting position

When the news of the Saxon raid reaches him, Arthorius is dragged out of his reverie, takes his elite knights and the two units of Combrogi warriors, along with his champion, his slingers and Bedwyr for support and tries to head off the Saxons. He leaves Cei with the three groups of Pagenses, with orders to protect the church.

Arthorius is in a bit of a bind...

Arthorius is in a bad position. The swamp protects his right flank, but he is pinned against the side of the table! Aelle moves to take advantage, closing the gap before Arthorius can get out into open ground.
It takes Cei the first turn to organise rabble of levy into a single formation, and he sits grinding his teeth in impatience as his men mill about and the Saxons advance!

Aelle attacks, playing Aggressive Charge, Strong Arm and Bounding Move along with Carpe Diem. He hopes to smash the Britons off the battlefield in one swoop. Arthorius plays Shieldwall Braced and hopes. Saint Caradoc is with him! Aelle loses three of his Gedricht, and withdraws!

That didn't go how Aelle planned...

Arthorius now plays Carpe Diem along with Hero of the Age, Aggressive Charge and Armour Bright (to protect against the risks of Hero of the Age). He is marvellously successful, routing both formations of Gedricht, although not without losses. He follows up with the knights and one group of warriors.

Cenric attacks the other group of warriors, routing them. Both sides’ morale plunges! Bedwyr brings up the knights and scatters Cenric, salvaging a little British pride. In the meantime, Sigebehrt has slogged his way through the rough ground to the church and broken in, ahead of Cei and his levy, who take up positions outside the church.

Take that!

Arthorius, his warrior force in tatters, moves to try to block the Saxon raiders’ line of retreat.
Cei attacks the church, but is driven off and one group of levy routs. The Saxons escape the church and run for the edge of the battlefield, laden with loot.

Bedwyr brings up the elite and attacks one group of raiders. After a couple of rounds, shieldwall has protected the knights and all are still alive, but they have gained so much shock they lose their amphora and run for the edge of the board! British morale falls to nothing and they all flee.

Who would have bet on that happening?

Aelle can’t believe his luck. He flees with his loot and such troops as he can salvage. Both sides have taken moderate losses, but the Saxons have won a minor victory, gaining a meagre (but welcome!) beggar’s bowl of plunder.

My takehome things from this? Two observations. First, the game can turn on nothing, and since it's quite possible to go from high morale to zero in a single turn, it really isn't over till the fat lady sings, so keep fighting! Second, the rules call for three large (2'x1') pieces of terrain. You really do need this. Even using all the smaller pieces I have, it's perfectly possible to play a game without the terrain having any effect, since you can skirt round it. So, some larger terrain pieces! I might make them modular so they're easier to store.

Merry meet again!


  1. Entertaining AAR, thanks for sharing. And you're absolutely right about the terrain.