Tally Ho!

Saturday, 10 June 2017

Punic Wars - Armati Campaign week 3

This week same the resumption of our Punic campaign with the Roman's seeking to expand their colonies in Spain through an attack on the province of Hispania. This weeks reinforcements cards produced an interesting mismatch with the Romans very strong in heavy infantry but facing a deficient of  7-2 in cavalry. The terrain was open with rough ground to the west of the battlefield and couple of low hills near the edge.




The Romans decide to deploy a strong left flank with all their cavalry, the Triarii, and most of the skirmish infantry in support. The weaker right was covered by some skirmishers with a second rank of Hastati  deployed as flank guards. So a classic attempt to attack on the left looked in prospect.
Roman centre

Skirmishers cover the right

The main attacking force on the left
Roman horse
The larger Carthaginian force was weaker in heavy infantry but had a wider set of attacking options. Hannibal had hoped the Romans would deploy a weaker flank and so split is cavalry evenly between the two sides hoping to contain the Romans on one flank and turn the other. The large numbers of cavalry meant the Carthaginians were forced to have a single large infantry command and so not be able to exploit their African Veterans manoeuvrability.

Punic left flank

Punic centre - Celts and Africans

Punic right - a larger force of cavalry and skirmisher

The Battle

The deployment meant that the two sides stronger flanks were facing each other on the Punic right, with the Roman's likely having the edge due to the Triarii presence. On the Punic left side though a flanking move looked very possible as the area was only guarded by skirmishers.

The Romans adopted a fairly cautious early approach, holding back with their outnumbered cavalry and seeking to deploy their flank guards into action, especially on the outnumbered right. The Carthaginians pushed forward with their flank attacks and sought to support this with their infantry, hoping they might catch the flank guards in an awkward position.  

Roman right deploys

Roman left deploys and the skirmishers move up to harass the Punic horse 

Punic hordes move forward to support their cavalry

Celtic cavalry bear-down on the Roman skirmishers guarding the left 

On the Punic left they were able to push the skirmishers aside and  begin to outflank the Romans while applying pressure from the front with their Celt-Iberian troops. Even with the presence of the Roman commander they made steady progress.

Roman right under pressure
Celtic horse moves to flank the Roam right

On the Punic right their were difficult choices to be made so Hannibal tried to block the Triarii with one unit of Punic horse whilst attacking the Roman cavalry with the other and some Numidian light horse. This was partly successful in tying down most of the Romans but did leave one unit of Triarii unengaged.
Triarii seek to block the Punic Horse.

 In the centre both sides heavy infantry came to blows as the Carthaginians sought to pin the Romans while their attack on the right developed. Honours were fairly even with the  Celt-Iberians performing well and almost  breaching the line.  
Heavies slug it out with Celt-Iberians on the left of shot

The Roman left is almost flanked 
The Punic line became slightly over extended which allowed the unengaged Triarii to about face and attack the end of the Carthaginian line.

Triarii about face

And attack the Punic line

In a tense last round it was the Roman flank attack that proved deadlier than the Punic, and so they were able to secure the victory.


A close encounter in which side was able to attack the other on their own left flank. Perhaps the critical point was the Carthaginian decision to press past the Triarii rather than seeking to engage them, although that would have been tricky with the commands as they were. an additional move would likely have seen their cavalry assaulting the Romans in the rear and so securing their own win.

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