A Sengoku Jidai: Gempei Kassen AAR (by Jayson NG)

Sengoku Jidai: Shadow of the Shogun is a turn-based tactical and strategic game set during this turbulent time; primarily focusing on the Japanese Warring States period and Japanese Invasion of Korea. Other armies from East Asia are also made available to simulate different conflicts across the region.
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AlbertoC
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A Sengoku Jidai: Gempei Kassen AAR (by Jayson NG)

Post by AlbertoC » Thu Aug 04, 2016 1:56 pm

Jayson NG, one of the developers of the new, upcoming DLC for Sengoku Jidai: Shadow of the Shogun, has written an AAR to show us what this new expansion is all about! We hope you'll enjoy it.

The Gempei War started in 1180 when Taira no Kiyomori placed his grandson, Antoku, on the imperial throne after deposing Emperor Takakura. The Minamoto lords then rose up to oppose this political move.

Warfare during the late Heian period was quite different from the period of warring states 300 years later. During this time, the samurai were mainly mounted archers but they would also fight on foot in their heavy and boxy Ō-yoroi armour. The supporting ashigaru wore less armour than their Sengoku era counterparts. Because shock cavalry was non-existent, their main weapon was the naginata polarm instead of the yari spear. There were ashigaru units armed with bows too.

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Illustrated Story of Night Attack on Yoshitsune's Residence At Horikawa, 16th Century


In the following AAR, I took command of 7,000 Taira troops against 11,000 Minamoto warriors in open battle (skirmish mode). The terrain is pretty open with a town and temple, flanked by fields, in the centre. On my right is a forest. There is nothing in the terrain that will greatly influence my tactics. For my optional troops, I chose to bring more naginata armed ashigaru and some samurai (mounted and foot). I do not foresee a large number of opposing cavalry so I opted to purchase more melee than bow infantry. Bows are good weapons against cavalry due to the rate of fire but the samurai armour would partially reduce the damage potential. Just like the early Sengoku era, all foot units are classed as warriors during this time. This gives them less problems with mobility and terrain so the paddy fields won’t be a problem. Since they don’t require to fight in formation, they are able to charge cavalry at will. But bow cavalry can choose to evade a melee engagement.

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The left flank was commanded by Taira no Katsunari. Taira no Fujiharu’s yumi samurai took the centre. On the right is Taira no Sukehide’s naginata troops. The army’s taishō, Taira no Kagehara‘s honjin was at the rear with samurai ready to provide support. With a majority of missile troops at the centre, the plan was to use the left and right divisions for flanking while the centre harassed and pinned the enemy with their arrows. Note: All names are fictional and procedurally generated by the game.


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The Taira army stopped advancing as they reached the town. The bulk of the Minamoto army also headed for the town, taking fire from Taira no Fujiharu’s archers. Two Minamoto commanders, Naomune and Mitsusugu, charged ahead of their foot troops and stood in the way of Taira no Katsunari’s left division.


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A brief exchange of arrows disrupted Taira no Katsunari’s cavalry and they evaded a subsequent Minamoto cavalry charge. The enemy cavalry then engaged Katsunari’s exposed ashigaru. At the centre, Fujiharu’s ashigaru engaged in melee while the yumi samurai shot at the approaching troops. A brawl between samurai from opposing sides raged in the town. The Taira samurai, would eventually vacate the town to regroup.


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On the right, Taira no Sukehide’s division has not yet fully engaged, but some battalions are beginning to falter after a brief melee. Their lack of bowmen was a disadvantage as they took fire while waiting for an opportunity to charge. Sukehide’s cavalry positioned itself to engage the enemy flanks while the taishō reserve cavalry was on the way.


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Katsunari’s infantry have been quite successful in pushing back the Minamoto but their pursuit of fleeing enemies has led them into a dangerous position.


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Sukehide’s on the other hand, pushed back the Minamoto troops but it led them into the paddy fields which adversely affected the unit’s performance.


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The Taira centre collapses under the weight of the Minamoto forces -- sending Taira no Fujiharu and his troops fleeing. The left flank consolidated their position. Minamoto no Mitsusugu has fallen while fighting some Taira ashigaru. Elsewhere, the infantry on the right flank has avoided getting into a melee and went past the Minamoto to support the left. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said of Sukehide and his cavalry as they got bogged down due to the paddy fields. They are had a difficult time defeating the enemy in a melee and eventually fled the battle.


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Fierce fighting raged on the paddy fields on the left flank and the Taira have surrounded the Minamoto troops from three directions. One by one the Minamoto troops broke and fled.


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As Taira no Fujiharu and a band of ashigaru entered the honjin of Minamoto no Norikiyo, the enemy taishō had enough and ordered a general retreat. While taking a lot of casualties, the outnumbered Taira has prevailed in bitter fighting against the Minamoto. But is it enough for them to win the Gempei War?


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