Monday, February 22, 2016

Going Home

We come to the end of our mini-campaign involving our Imagi-Nations Litharus and Latveria.  The previous four scenarios were drawn from the Charles Grant's publication, "Raid on St. Michel."

I've collected all six of these books and have really enjoyed reading them and now playing through one.  This one lends itself to introducing the idea of a mini-campaign to the group in that there isn't the need for a lot of strategic decisions by the players.  Other books in the series require more input and paperwork, as I hope to share with you over time.

Today with have the much battered Litharusian army retreating to their homeland after a bloody though successful raid on Alten that gathered three wagon loads of treasury.  Due to a brave rider who won the dice-off in the last game General Prochniak knew the bridge and town had fallen.  What he did not know, but could assume, was that a Latverian force was following from Alten.  Before we started, players were reminded:

We played on a 6 x 9' main table, with a 2 x 9' foot back table.  The Litharusian army had to deploy what they could on the back table and create a map showing formation and position for the rest.  The Latverians put two battalion and the dragoons in the open to force the enemy to deploy, while one held the village of Zahn.  Somewhere on the north side of the Vistula lurked the remnants of the force evicted from Zahn the previous game.
Latverians deployed forward to hold the invaders back, but why?

Some of the rallied troops from the previous game look across
the Vistula River.

Some Litharusians go forward while others begin to flank the defenders.

The Latverians, after getting in a good first volley, step back.

The odds appeared long here.  The Litharusian force held an 8:3 advantage in infantry battalions and a 7:2 edge in squadrons.  But now we saw why the defenders were risking much to keep the enemy as far back as possible.
The first of eight squadrons of cavalry appear.  Cavalry to the rescue?!

Four regiments of Latverian cavalry have been shadowing the retiring Litharus army and now sought to strike and at least retake the plunder taken from Alten.  Regrettably the infantry fit for combat were far to the rear and could not intervene.  It was up to the cavalry.
Litharus grenadiers deploy as Pandours are expended to cover.

On the back table both sides deploy and look to strike first.

Caught up in the action I missed the next few photo ops.  The dragoons pictured above charged from back table to main catching a strong grenadier battalion in the flank.  Not surprisingly the grenadiers routed, disordering friendly cuirassiers behind.  A dice throw indicated a required pursuit which took them into the stationary and disordered horse. 

We were then reminded why we use dice as the pursuers rolled the worst possible result and defying odds were themselves in turn routed.  A promising start to the cavalry action was turning sour.
Latverian cavalry sweeps north, looking for more flanks as the
town garrison issues and forms.  Taking fire from the lurkers over
the river.

Another Litharus battalion routs from gun fire and disorders more
friendly cavalry.  An opportunity or just a pause in the advance?

The routing infantry rally behind friendlies at the table edge.

Hussars screen cuirassiers in the foreground.  Dragoons rout
on the right.
Seeing the mass of disordered Litharus cavalry the Vistula Lancers lower lances and break into a gallop.  Even though their opponents are heavier, they will (statistically) make easy work of their disordered and stationary opponents.
And after rolling for extra movement.... come up 2" short.

The other three regiments and their light guns try to find a spot
to charge.

Here Dan as the Latverian commander decided to make the campaign spirited decision to preserve his force and retire.  Since it was the last game of this campaign there was no need to play out the probably very bloody conclusion.  The lancers were flanked at close range by a healthy infantry unit and would be shredded.  With the turn to reorder given by the grace of the dice, the Litharus forces would be able to make their numbers tell could force the river and bridge.  The remnant brigade was even moving to help from the north side of the Vistula.  Yes, time to let the enemy leave your country and retain a fighting force.

So the army, much diminished and with the wagons of loot and wounded made it across the Vistula and returned to native soil.  The papers will relate a tale of punishing the Latverians who "fired first" back on the first day of the invasion... um, maneuvers, and the bean-counters will be pleased that the expedition paid for itself and may fund the next.  Latveria has a rallying cry and may be filled with a terrible resolve.  The campaign has certainly fired the painting production levels.


1 comment:

  1. "Old School" eye-candy and enjoyment at their best!