Tally Ho!

Tuesday 31 August 2021

Dark Ages Saga monday

In celebration of the bank holiday weekend we ran a series of games as a loosely-linked league. It was Vikings verses the rest (Irish, Welsh, and Saxons) over 3 games using Saga (6 points / army).

Game 1 - Saxons vs Vikings

In this scenario the Vikings were loaded-down with booty and attempting to break through a large force of Saxons to escape. This was a toughie for the Vikings for a few reasons

  • The Saxons has an entirely Levy army that filled the board from edge to edge - no easy way through.
  • The Vikings have no inherent ability to move multiple units so being the aggressor would have to use most of the dice to move
  • The scoring was for units surviving - the Vikings specialise in banzai charges where everyone dies

As the Vikings I took the goat by the horns and pushed forward at the weakest part of the line, sacrificing a couple of units to hold off most of the Saxons.  The plan was to charge-in and simply have my berserkers and herdsmen blow a hole in the lines.   

It met with moderate success but I lost too many troops to compensate for the progress made. No wagons were lost but none got off either. 1 - 0 to the non-Vikings.

Game 2 - Saxons vs Vikings

In this game the Vikings were raiding a Saxon village to recover some lost booty and teach them a lesson. The Saxons deployed in a line before the village awaiting the attack whilst the Vikings moved forward.   

I was able to manoeuvre a couple of units onto the onto the exposed Saxon left. As they repositioned it was clear that capturing the town against such a numerous would be pretty tough - so time for a gamble. By extending their lines the Saxon warlord was left alone so I launched the berserks into him loaded with Saga abilities. They smite'd him mightily and the Saxon defence collapsed. 1-1. 

Game 3 - Vikings (x2) vs Welsh and Irish

For the decider we each had a village to defend and therefor one to attack. The Irish were assigned to raid the Viking village against an archer heavy force. The Welsh defended against a balanced force. 

All of the Celts pushed forward to threaten the Vikings. The Irish took light shooting damage before beginning a javelin bombardment, which is very much their thing. The Welsh launched a series of spoiling charges whilst evading the Viking counter attacks.    

The Irish attack quickly wore-down the villages defenders and they pushed into the village to loot the spoils. The Welsh skirmished and harassed so that a weakened Viking force was all that reached their village.   

The result was a clear win for the Celts to running out 2-1 winners overall. 

Sunday 29 August 2021

Ottomans vs Turks photo special

We took a short break this week from the renaissance campaign to teach a new player the rules. This also provided a chance for a reverse of last weeks game where a shooting heavy Ottoman army gave the Polish a blood nose.  So we swapped sides and were allowed to tweak the armies.  

For the Polish I went almost mounted with a large screen Cossacks to soak-up the artillery while the heavies trundled-up behind.

The Ottoman army was unchanged from the week before - so 3 artillery batteries and lots of line infatry, with just a few heavy cavalry.

The Polish were set-up for just one plan, a full out charge. So they left forward straight into the teeth of the Turkish army.   

It worked reasonably well with the Cossacks taking only light wounds from the artillery before charging in. They died horribly but did manage to take a few units with them. Next the heavies charged in killing a couple of units but ultimately bouncing off a couple of times.   

Overall it was not a bad outcome for the Polish - they blew some holes in the Ottoman lines and would have likely won on points if we'd kept count of the dead. So certainly a way to use them and it felt pretty historical. 


Thursday 19 August 2021


 One of the changes that successive lockdowns has brought is a return to board games, but the twist being some of the players joining via video call to par take in the action. So I've just bought a new game which promises about a 100 hours play. Its an RPG called Gloomhaven which has gotten good reviews. 

So I've been busy painting the starter characters. Its not compulsory but does look better.

The Brute is a tanky chap designed to absorb enemy hits and form the front line

The Spellweaver strikes from distance using the power of the elements

The Scoundrel likes to lurk in the shadows and ambush people

Cragheart is a generalist able to melee or attack from distance 

The Tinkerer buffs his party with potions and contraptions

Finally the Mindthief can confuse their foes and assault their minds

Renaissance Campaign - week 8

We used this weeks game to complete the 5th campaign turn, with the Polish attacking to reclaim some previously lost territory. The Poles went very elite with a force dominated by costly Hussars and Hadjuks. 

Knowing that I could nt match the Polish cavalry I went for a very different force with minimal horse but 3 artillery batteries and lots of large infantry units. I'd be pretty static but as the defender a draw would keep the territory.

Both sides deployed their horse largely on their left flanks - so it was full steam ahead for the Polish into the Ottoman firing line.

They managed to reach the lines with only limited damage but then bounced-off the emplaced Turks with their first wave, losing both Winged Hussars. The Ottomans advanced more cautiously on their own left pushing back the Cossacks holding that side of the Polish lines.     

The Poles launched a further couple of cavalry charges into the Turkish but were again repulsed. The game ended with the Polish horse shattered and their right flank turned, giving the Ottomans a good win.      

This different type of force worked pretty well but mostly due to favourable scenarios - being the defender in a Kill scenario means you don't really need to move. If either of those was NOT true then you might struggle to force a win.

With two wins this turn the Ottomans continue to expand their lands 

Sunday 15 August 2021

Renaissance Campaign - week 7

 As we enter the holiday period we've inevitably got a few absences. So turn 5 will last a couple of weeks, and this week we fought just the Ottoman invasion of Imperial territory. This was a kill scenario so it was all about damage.

The Germans opted to mass all their infantry on the west side and all their cavalry on the east where the ground was most favourable. 

The Ottomans mirrored the deployment with the emplaced guns forming the hinge between the two forces. 

The Ottoman's plan has been to hang back with all their units and let the guns do some work before the main clash. However red mist descended for the Turkish horse commander and so he committed to  rapid advance instead.   

Things were fairly even quality-wise for the cavalry but the Ottomans had about a 50% numbers advantage. Some nice to-and-fro ensured but with stronger dice and more troops the Turks put the Germans to flight. 

The infantry assault was much more in favour of the Imperials as they had similar numbers put better quality units. Aided by their guns and with cavalry support the Turks were able to hang on though and secure a roughly 2-1 win on points. 

So at the halfway point in turn 5 the Ottomans have conquered their first German province and continue their steady advance.   


Sunday 1 August 2021

Renaissance Campaign week 6

Turn 3 was to be fought over two weeks as we'd a new player this week who needed to learn the rules. So the only scoring game this week was the Ottomans invading Polish province 8. The scenario was Objectives, but to spice things up both players got to position an objective in the enemies half.

Both players opted to place the markers on the eastern end of the field and to mass their cavalry there. The central objective was left to the infantry to contest. 

Both sides horse pressed forward with the larger and wider Ottoman cavalry managing to get around the Poles and threaten the objective in their deployment zone early on. Similarly the much bigger Turkish infantry force simply swarmed the central objective and easily captured it. 

As the action got serious the Ottoman horse proved much more capable than usual, and instead of simply melting they withstood the Polish charge and actually managed to push them back. With the main heavy cavalry attack stalled the Poles found themselves stuck and went on to loose all three objectives.    

so Province 8 has been recaptured by the Ottomans and a strong foot hold made into Polish lands.

The Practice Game

We also fought a small 800 point game so our newest recruit could try out the army they would captain for the campaign - Roy's Imperial forces.  

Ottoman centre of guns and artillery

Imperial foot

The Germans pressed forward doggedly and enjoyed considerable success in the cavalry melee, before  being more roughly handled by the Ottoman foot and artillery.