Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Dragon Rampant- a last hurrah

Well I made it back to South Tarawa, Kiribati in one piece. From 8-12 degree Celsius days, fires at night and -1C degree nights to +31C days. A bit of a shock to the system, though a swim in the Pacific (a balmy 28-29 degrees) soon helped me adjust. Still, I actually enjoy winter and having a fire each night so it was great to be home for a few weeks.

Anyway I headed up to Christchurchon Saturday for my flights to Fiji on Sunday- and Tarawa Molnday. So I had teed up a game vs my old mate Ian. I arrived at his place to find a table already set up and ready to go, good lad. So it was to be the the first outing for my new Black Nunenoreans/ ex army off the dead troops.

Black Numenoreans (32 pts)
·         2x Black Numenorean Infantry- Heavy Foot(1 unit is the general)
·         2x Black Numenorean Archers- Light Missiles
·         1x Troll- Large warbeast
·         1x Warg riders   Light Riders
·         1x Scouts

Since I was using my based units Ian decided to use some of his 100 Year War English force. He painted this force up  close to 20 years ago and unfortunately it has not seen much table time. He has two very, very nicely painted 100 Year War French & English armies that we really must get onto the table a lot more often! The army is made from Old Glory figures and is very, very nice.

Ian threw together a quick force comprising of:
Human Kingdoms (32 points)
·         1x elite rider (Gen)
·         1x heavy cavalry
·         2x infantry- light foot offensive
2x archers 

Black Numenorean deployment

And the (so called) good guys
 The end of turn 1.
 The humans advance.
 I shuffle forward to meet them- and after having decided I was too close to my baseline if things went horribly wrong!
 The warg riders are sent on a scouting/flanking mission.
 While on the other flank, the human light infantry advances toward the woods.
 The vain glorious human commander leads from the front.
 So I send forward the troll to ruin his day.
 Troll and general clash

 Ian moves his archers to support the general, while my own archers and scouts trade missile fire with them.
 Peew-peew noises are always appropriate at moments like this
 As you can see the battle lines are more or less intact.
 General Goody-Goody-Two-Shoes drives the troll back
 Then my troll fails a courage roll and stomps off the table!
  However his rather rash general is now looking a tad...isolated. CHARGE!!!!!
 The two generals clash.
 As he troll had battered the General GGTS (under half strength so only 6 dice to roll) the result was a bit of a formality.
 At this stage I thought things were looking up.
 My other Black Numenorean heavy infantry-Offensive (aka BNHI-O) see off the lighter armed human light infantry-offensive (HLI-O).
 Still the human archers are starting to more than annoy my general
 In the end he too fails a courage test and decides discretion is the better part of valour- after all the battle is all but won...isn't it?
 The final mop up commences

Final Thoughts
My report may look a bit one sided but the game was in the balance right to the end. I got a  bit lucky at times but my plan to use the wargs to try to flank his line kind of worked. I was lucky that Ian wasn’t able to concentrate his missile fire early on. The middle stages were touch and go but in the end I managed to sneak away with a win only losing 2 units though others were badly damaged. 

It was a good fast game- as Dragon Rampant seems to be-no faffing around with unit frontages, ZoCs etc, etc, etc, very old school IMO it harkens back to the days where players and rules writers took things a tad less seriously,  so is right up my alley. 

Having the generals have a reroll once per turn to a unit within 12” worked well and stopped a few superfast turns. Even so you still had to be a bit tactical with which units to activate and when- which I liked. Losing the general was really noticeable from a command and control point of view (lots more failed command rolls) so maybe the lesson learned was just because you CAN charge with your general doesn’t mean you always SHOULD!

We both enjoyed it and are keen to scale it up to bigger games and I think Ian quite liked using unit style bases as opposed to individual figures- though I came away with a new respect for his 6cm x 6cm bases as they give a bit more flexibility. Oh no, not more basing dilemmas!

I look forward to plenty more games of DR when I return home and we are already plotting for a 80 point per side clash…