To familiarise ourselves with the rules / armies we began with a practise game between Roman Republic and the Successor forces. Both sides have similar command abilities but different strengths. The smaller Successors have hard hitting heavy cavalry, elephants, and the tough pike phalanx. The larger Roman force has greater manoeuvrability through the Triarri and Spanish LHI.
Pyrrhus deployed the massed phalanx centrally with Companion cavalry on the right and elephants supported by lights on the left. A strong advance on the right and in the centre looked likely.
The Romans deployed their own horse on the left, with skirmishers support, placing them opposite the Companions. The centre was occupied by heavy infantry with the Triarri and Spanish LHI on the right. The plan was to hold whilst the Triarri flanked the phalanx and the Spanish destroyed the elephants.
|Roman horse and supports
|Roman / Latin heavies
|The flexible flankers
|Close-up of the Warlord Games elephants
As the battle opened, the Roman centre began a gentle wheel while the skirmishers advanced on the left to harass the successor infantry. Unfortunately they got too far ahead of their support and were stomped by the advancing Companions.
|Left wheel chaps!
|Skirmishers advance - this would end baldy!
Centrally the heavy infantry lines drew close together, but with the Triarri moving into a flanking position the phalanx was forced to slow and partially refuse its flank. At the same time the Spanish pressed forward to attack the elephants.
|Lines clash with the flanking Romans at the top
|Spanish try to reach the elephants
The Romans looked good on the right, but on the left the tables were turned. The Successor Companions ploughed into the Roman horse and rapidly cut through them to threaten the Roman left.
|Roman horse crumbles
There was then a key moment in the game. The Successors had an overlap on the left of the Roman line but were unable to exploit this as they lacked the "breaks" needed to split-up their formation. So the Companions would need to move across to attack the Romans.
|The aborted flank attack
|Triarri rough-up some Greeks
As the battle raged in the centre it was a race between the Companions and the Triarri to destroy the ene3my before their own lines collapsed. In the end it was the Romans who were able to act quickest and so win the game 5-3.
|Romans roll-up the flank
|The phalanx succumbs