Ludendorf's Christmas Time Ordeal

Ludendorf
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Ludendorf's Christmas Time Ordeal

Post by Ludendorf » Tue Dec 18, 2018 11:08 pm

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Hi everyone.

I thought I'd try something a bit different. Christmas time is upon us, the tourney squares have emptied, and I'm eager to get some practice in at this game while things are quieter... but I can't quite figure out where to start. So, I figured that I'd offer myself up in the name of science and let the community fling challenges at me... and the more entertainingly torturous the better. The rules of engagement are as follows. :shock:

-The challenges can be single player battle or a multiplayer challenge from the challenge issuer.
-The armies, terrain, difficulty, mirror status, points advantage/disadvantage and even battle type (Remove the Head etc) are completely at the discretion of the challenge issuer. It can be a random or historical battle.
-I have to post the result; win or lose, there can be no wriggling out! I will post an image of my army selection prior to deployment and the result after each challenge concludes. I will make a note if I forget to take a picture of the army selection.
-The means used to claim victory are at my discretion... that said, it's really to my own embarrassment if the only way I could survive the day was by camping on a mountain the entire time! Generally, I'll try and come out and fight unless the odds are well and truly overwhelming.

Win or lose, the objective is to get better at the game, so don't hold back out of fear of the challenge being too difficult. Even a defeat can impart valuable lessons. With that...

...

...gulp. (Small voice) any takers?

sIg3b
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Re: Ludendorf's Christmas Time Ordeal

Post by sIg3b » Wed Dec 19, 2018 7:18 pm

I admire your attitude! I´ll think of something. :)

ahuyton
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Re: Ludendorf's Christmas Time Ordeal

Post by ahuyton » Wed Dec 19, 2018 7:44 pm

Nice idea. If you're still enthusiastic after Christmas I will post a challenge for us to try. Will be back in action around the 29th.

Morbio
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Re: Ludendorf's Christmas Time Ordeal

Post by Morbio » Fri Dec 21, 2018 2:11 pm

I was beginning to get the shakes because of the lack of battles and was thinking of PMing you for some practice, so I'll post something to help us both learn. I'll be finishing work in under an hour so maybe there'll be something before the wine is opened!

sIg3b
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Re: Ludendorf's Christmas Time Ordeal

Post by sIg3b » Fri Dec 21, 2018 8:08 pm

How about this?
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sIg3b
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Re: Ludendorf's Christmas Time Ordeal

Post by sIg3b » Fri Dec 21, 2018 8:14 pm

I have issued a Password challenge for you. Will send the Password to your Inbox.

I get to play my favourite army, Seleucids, versus their most feared enemy, ATROPATENE! Equal pts, but in the Steppe, without hills, it should be an uphill battle for you. :)
Last edited by sIg3b on Tue Dec 25, 2018 6:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Ludendorf
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Re: Ludendorf's Christmas Time Ordeal

Post by Ludendorf » Fri Dec 21, 2018 9:16 pm

sIg3b wrote:
Fri Dec 21, 2018 8:14 pm
I have issued a Password challenge for you. Will send the Password to your Inbox.

I get to play my favourite army, Seleucids, versus their most feared enemy, ATREOPATENE! Equal pts, but in the Steppe, without hills, it should be an uphill battle for you. :)
Challenge accepted! I await you on the plains... :)

sIg3b
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Re: Ludendorf's Christmas Time Ordeal

Post by sIg3b » Sat Dec 22, 2018 3:48 pm

And they are plain indeed, those plains! No stream or other ugly surprises. The Random Map God likes me! :D

sIg3b
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Re: Ludendorf's Christmas Time Ordeal

Post by sIg3b » Sun Dec 23, 2018 4:56 pm

And this is how it all starts:
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Ludendorf
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Re: Ludendorf's Christmas Time Ordeal

Post by Ludendorf » Sun Dec 23, 2018 10:37 pm

Morbio issued me a challenge in the form of a mirror match between Thrace (350-241 BC) and Rome (340-281 BC). The result was a draw! The Thracians take two drubbings as the Romans triumph in both matches, fighting off hordes of Thracian spearmen and peltasts and emerging, while hardly unscathed, a great deal better off than their Thracian counterparts did.
Thrace vs Rome Thracian Side.jpg
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Playing as Thrace, I set up in a (perhaps too) aggressive stance, looking to meet the Romans in the centre of the field, get them bogged down pushing through the front of my line and over the patches of rough ground in the middle of the field, and then flank them to death with troops coming in from the mountains and my reserves. I also hope to pick off a few medium and light infantry that I suspect Morbio might send over the mountains. If he were to do this, my own mediums will outnumber his by a large margin, potentially allowing me to surround and pick them off. It would delay my assault from the mountain, but I consider losing a bit of time worth it if it means I can cleave off some of the Roman army's medium units while they are away from the rest of the army.

Morbio, however, avoids the mountain (quite sensibly as it turns out), and instead opts to take a mostly heavy infantry force through the pass and out from the forest, spearheaded by the veteran hastati and followed by the regulars. He also brings a strong left flank (my right) full of skirmishers, cavalry and a dangerous mix of medium and heavy infantry. This was an area I mostly ignored when I played Romans, and the strength of his attack here caught me off-guard.

I at first succeeded in catching a few of Morbio's forward units as they get ahead of the rest of his army, pinning them in combat and then catching them in the flanks. However, due to the fact that these were veteran hastati and I mostly only had Thracian Spearmen and falxmen as my best units, they held on indefinitely, and Morbio was able to bring the rest of his army to bear. Despite heavy casualties near the mountain as my archers, slingers and skirmishers peppered his hastati from above, he was able to mostly lock down my mountain assault and even counter-attack in places, keeping the best part of my numbers firmly out of the fight while his powerful left flank surrounded and annihilated my right on the rough ground, while in the centre I was steadily overwhelmed by the much stronger Roman infantry that, despite receiving decimating casualties, kept coming forward. As my army fell apart, I was flanked in quite a few places, and this and the panic from those routs further weakened my force (as often happens with lower quality armies.)

It's worth noting at this point that part of my plan included planned push-backs, with the hastati pushing through to be flanked by reserves. This didn't happen, and my units tended to disrupt or fragment instead. I will have to bear this in mind in future matches, and it makes me quite nervous of my prospects in my match against sIg3b. You can't always rely on pushbacks to even happen, let alone to happen at the right moment to gain a flank from them.

In the end, it was a pretty decisive victory for Rome and a dark day for the Thracians. Unfortunately for the Thracians, it was not to be their only defeat. I'll go over the second part of the mirror in a separate post. The results:
Thrace vs Rome Thracian Side Result.jpg
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Last edited by Ludendorf on Sun Dec 23, 2018 11:28 pm, edited 2 times in total.

Ludendorf
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Re: Ludendorf's Christmas Time Ordeal

Post by Ludendorf » Sun Dec 23, 2018 11:19 pm

Part 2.
Thrace vs Rome Roman Side.jpg
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My initial plan in this battle was simple. Ignore the mountain, ignore the forest, send the heavy units through the narrow pass and use the superior quality of my soldiers to break through and out into the open. For this, I drew up in a formation very similar to the one Morbio used (and in fact, we seemed to come to the same conclusion independently of one another, as neither of us saw the other side of the mirror before we deployed for battle). My veteran hastati were at the front with the regulars behind in the centre, with my triarii and raw legionaries drawn up along the flanks and towards the rear of the column as a guard.

The purpose of this formation was to make it possible for my army to fight in multiple directions at the same time without exposing my flanks... which is actually somewhat difficult to do in FoG II while attacking. The weaker units at the sides hold down the flanks, the veterans break through the centre, and the regulars then spill out to cause havoc like so many stinging wasps. It's the formation I use to avoid being flanked when I know I am likely to be outnumbered or when I can't use the full map due to terrain, and thus need to deploy in a deep formation.

A force of mediums and the light javelins was positioned on the side of the mountain to act as a deterrent to any force trying to move around the rear of the army and surround it. This force was never supposed to be the focus of my battle plan. I expected to be outnumbered in the mountains and the intention was to hold these men back and threaten the sides of any Thracian force that tried to surround my army. This... didn't exactly come to pass.

It's hard to summarise a battle after the fact, and even harder in brief. Most of the fighting actually wound up taking place on or near the mountain. Morbio drew up in a defensive position on the hill opposite my starting position, meaning I opted to try and get the upper hand in the skirmish so as to force his troops off the hill and out onto the flat ground I wanted to fight on. This skirmish happened mostly on and around the mountain, with my skirmishers having an advantage due to starting there. As often happens, the skirmish resulted in both side's mediums being thrown in, with the heavy troops coming through the valley. I then had to send my veterans to help my mediums, which in turn drew in more of Morbio's mediums, until the focus of the battle was on the battle for the mountain. I was ultimately able to get a decisive advantage here due to the high ground advantage and the superior quality of my units, and it was on the mountain that the battle was really decided. It's a good example of how a battle plan can end up being thrown out the window, as I really didn't want to fight here originally. I eventually left Morbio with too few units to defend his position on the hill and with his very well-conducted ambush from the forest scotched by my flank guard and a bit of luck, I was able to push up onto the hill and win the battle.

Morbio launched a small but well-supported cavalry assault on my own cavalry in a bid to get round the unprotected back of my army, using a mix of light and heavy cavalry to pin and flank my outnumbered armoured cav, but thanks to the forest, I was able to either evade the cavalry or hold them off until help arrived, meaning they were unable to influence the overall course of the day. The result was a victory for Rome again.
Thrace vs Rome Roman Side Result.jpg
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Thrace vs Rome Thracian Side Casualty Breakdown.jpg
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Thanks Morbio for the challenge and a pair of good games. It's given me a lot to think about regarding how I use medium-heavy armies like the Thracians. :)

rbodleyscott
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Re: Ludendorf's Christmas Time Ordeal

Post by rbodleyscott » Mon Dec 24, 2018 8:48 am

Great stuff.
Richard Bodley Scott

Image

sIg3b
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Seleucids vs. Atropatene

Post by sIg3b » Tue Dec 25, 2018 6:51 pm

I fall back on the right and send reinforcements to both flanks; Ludendorf advances, drawing slightly toward my left.
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sIg3b
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Re: Ludendorf's Christmas Time Ordeal

Post by sIg3b » Wed Dec 26, 2018 4:04 pm

Ludendorf nimbly extends his line; by the Gods, he is outmanoeuvering me! :shock:
My Elephants are slow to arrive; perhaps it was not such a good idea to put them in the reserve?
One of my Horse Archers is the first unit in this battle to get disrupted. :o
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Ludendorf
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Re: Ludendorf's Christmas Time Ordeal

Post by Ludendorf » Thu Dec 27, 2018 12:56 am

If I got the chance to do this again, I would possibly try and draw back my right flank here to get away from those phalangites. On the other hand, taking the pressure off like that could have allowed sIg3b to get his battle line fully in order and bring the whole force round to crush me. I thought sIg3b's battle line looked a little thin, and decided to go long line and risk a frontal confrontation with the phalangites in the hope of opening up a flank somewhere.

sIg3b
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Re: Ludendorf's Christmas Time Ordeal

Post by sIg3b » Thu Dec 27, 2018 7:47 pm

Ludendorf wrote:
Thu Dec 27, 2018 12:56 am
If I got the chance to do this again, I would possibly try and draw back my right flank here to get away from those phalangites. On the other hand, taking the pressure off like that could have allowed sIg3b to get his battle line fully in order and bring the whole force round to crush me. I thought sIg3b's battle line looked a little thin, and decided to go long line and risk a frontal confrontation with the phalangites in the hope of opening up a flank somewhere.
And I believe you were completely right! :shock:

sIg3b
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Re: Ludendorf's Christmas Time Ordeal

Post by sIg3b » Fri Dec 28, 2018 5:02 pm

Must take a few days off, Ludendorf. Have toothache, take painkillers, can´t concentrate. Will try to be back soonest!

sIg3b
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Re: Ludendorf's Christmas Time Ordeal

Post by sIg3b » Wed Jan 02, 2019 9:35 pm

AAAnd I´m back; turn sent.

sIg3b
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Re: Ludendorf's Christmas Time Ordeal

Post by sIg3b » Sat Jan 05, 2019 7:25 pm

Turn 5 close-up of my left: Heavy fighting between the Skirmishers; my Elephants take their time to arrive; Ludendorf pins my Cavalry with an Irregular and drives my Camels away -those cowards evade instead of taking up the fight! :x
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sIg3b
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Re: Ludendorf's Christmas Time Ordeal

Post by sIg3b » Sat Jan 05, 2019 7:35 pm

A couple mistakes of the Seleucid general -probably a relative of the king, who owes his command to nepotism!- and a few bad dice rolls later, my Elephants are disrupted, one of my Phalanxes fragmented, and my whole position starting to fall apart.
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