Korvessa continues his Alexander campaign – look forward to some pictures!
Alexander was deep in his personal thoughts as he pondered his situation. He had been out-maneuvered by the hated Memnon. The Persians were now well situated behind a river. The tight formations that were so necessary for the success of the phalanx, would be broken up on the steep banks. It would be even worse for the cavalry.
“We’re a long way from Macedon,” said Hephaestion.
“Hmph. True enough.” The Thracians were taken care of easily enough, but those battles against Thebes and the Greek Leagues were tough. So tough he had been forced to grant them more concessions than he would have liked. It was good to have all that behind him and move on to this new adventure.
“Enough thinking, it is time for action,” thought Alexander. “Call the Generals to my tent!”
“Gentlemen, how do we get across that river?”
“We could cross the river upstream during the night and attack at first light while they are doing, their morning devotions…”
‘Wait,” said Alexander, “I have an idea! We could cross the river upstream at night…”
War & Conquest – 2900 points
Alexander, General Commanding
Parmenion, Wing Commander
Craterus, commanding the center
8 Royal Companions
8 Prodromoi Lancers
6 Thracians light cavalry
6 Allied Greek light cavalry
18 Veteran pikemen
18 Regular pikemen
24 Thracian light infantry
16 Agrianian light infantry
16 Mercenary archers
Memnon, General Commanding (Played by “The Spartan”)
Satraps: Arisites, Niphates & Petines
12 Greek mercenary cavalry (Played by old Ral Partha Amazon cav)
20 Cilician (Persian) cavalry (played by Carthaginian Gauls)
20 Paphlagonian (Colonist) cavalry (Played by misc female warriors)
16 Hyrcanian (Colonist) horse archers (Played by Eureka Amazons & others)
10 Bactrian (Noble) cavalry (Played by converted Eureka Amazons)
10 Kappadocians (Noble) cavalry (Played by Eureka Amazon cav)
20 Medes (Persian) cavalry (Played by Carthaginian Spanish)
24 Satrap Infantry (Played by misc female warriors)
24 Greek veteran hoplites (Played by Eureka Amazon hoplites)
30 Greek mercenary hoplites (Played by Old Glory figs)
12 Kyrtian slingers (Eureka Amazons & a few others)
12 Skirmishers (Eureka Amazons)
The Persian army advances, but stays out of charge range of Alexander. The cavalry in the center starts to maneuver to get away from the infantry phalanx. They will do no good there.
Alexander follows suit, hoping to seize the advantage (Tactics note: if you advance to the center, that can give you time/space to rally your troops. Troops that route near the edge of table can be gone in a flash).
Both sides are desperate for the initiative, so use SIP. Alexander uses two. He needn’t had bothered as his original die roll was higher than his SIP roll. But at least his special Alexander rule allowed him to win one back.
Agrianians charge Kyrtian slingers. They lose 2 figs to ‘stand & shoot” but carry on.
Prodromoi Lancers charge Memnon & his Greek mercenary cavalry
Alexander and has companions charge a huge block of Cilician cavalry
Thracian javelins fail to find their mark against the armor of the Kappodocian Nobles
Mercenary archers take out a single figure of the mass of Median cavalry.
Agrianians v slingers: The Agrianians get the better of a tough fight (4:3 kills), but the slingers have had enough and make a break for it. They are overrun.
The hard charging lancers push back Memnon and his mercenaries. The latter are at the edge of breaking, but Memnon, in spite of his fresh wound, holds them together by shear force of will (Special rules made a difference here:
1. Using a Xyston in a charge allows you to reroll your “kills” dice. But you have to reroll them all. The decision cost the Lancers as they dropped from 2/4 to 1/4).
2. Memnon used a SIP to add another morale dice. He now gets 4 dice and choses the best two. He would have routed otherwise).
In their most glorious charge to date, Alexander and his companions cause great destruction to the Cilician cavalry (3:0 kills), using their long xystons to good effect (rules note: xyston reroll improved form 2-3, which made a difference)
Charges: Rather than waiting to be surrounded, Satrap Arisites (AKA Lagertha) & the Paphlagonians charge Hypaspists.
The right flank cavalry continue to maneuver away from the center phalanx traffic jam, they should be in position to charge next turn.
Hyrcanian horse archers drop two veteran pikemen
The right flank skirmishers contest the broken ground with Thracian light cavalry, causing the latter two casualties.
The Paphlagonians are hurt by the Hypaspists (2:3 kills), as expected, but the momentum of the charge and their superior numbers allow them to hold, but Arasites is wounded.
Meanwhile, Memnon continues with his bloody struggle against the lancers. He continues to get the worst of it (3:4 kills) but grimly hangs on.
Thracian light cavalry charged skirmishers but were dissipated by javelins
Agrianians maneuver to be the rear of Memnon’s cavalry should they be needed next turn (This turned out to be a more brilliant move than I realized).
The pike phalanx strides forward knowing both their flanks are secure, for the time being anyway. Meanwhile, on the Macedonian left, the archers scramble to get out of the way of the Median cavalry bearing down on them.
The Mercenary shot (later it will become famous as the “Parthian Shot”) takes out one Mede.
With both sides getting dangerously close to dissipating, the Lancers finally drive off Memnon’s Greek cavalry – right into the teeth of the freshly arrived Agrianinas. The latter cause one Greek casualty as they flee by, just enough to dissipate them. The wounded Memnon is carried away with the flight.
The Satrap Aristites continues to inspire the troops and they just manage to hold on against the underperforming (as usual) Hypaspists.
The Persians finally manage to get things going on the right flank and make several
Spotting an opening, the veteran Greek Hoplites charge Meleager’s lightly armed phalanx.
The Bactrian Nobles charge the Thracian light infantry.
Meanwhile, the Hyrcanian horse are still trapped in the middle an unable to maneuver. With nothing better to do, they continue to pepper Coenus’ veteran phalanx with accurate bow fire, to considerable effect (4 kills). In two rounds they have reduced the veterans by 1/3.
The Hypaspists have finally decided to get serious and drive off the Paphlagonian cavalry (6:1 kills) but are too exhausted for an effective pursuit. But it maters not – they are fleeing right into the sights of Alexander & his companions.
On the right, Meleager’s phalanx is putting up surprisingly effective resistance against the more heavily armed veteran hoplites (Meleager up 3:2 kills). They remain locked in combat.
To their right, The Thracian light infantry refuse to bend against the Bactrian Nobles. They are getting the worst of it (2:0 kills), but their superior numbers and “Warbandiness” keep them in the fight.
On the far right Parmenion and his outnumbered Thessalians are charged by Satrap Petines and his Median cavalry, the fight is fairly equal (1:1 kills), but Persian numbers and the momentum of the charge are pressing Parmenion. His inspiring presence (they passed morale because of a SIP), the Thessalians stay in the fight.
Word has reached the Hyrcanians of the flight of the entire left flank, so noting that they have seriously weakened Coenus’ veteran phalanx, they decide it is time to depart and make a vigorous advance to the rear – narrowly avoiding being impaled on the spears of by their own Phalanx behind them.
Kappadocian Noble cav charge Macedonian archers. They fire and flee (cause 1 kill) but are overrun nonetheless.
Threatened by Alexander & his companions to their flank, the Paphlagonian satrap is unable to convince his troops to reform and face the music.
Persian skirmishers advance across the broken ground and fire a volley of javelins at Macedonian Greek Allied light cavalry. The formation shudders, but they hold.
The Persian veteran Greek Hoplites continue in a protracted struggle against Meleager’s phalanx. The Macedonians gain a temporary upper hand, but the mercenaries hold.
To their right, the Bactrian Noble cavalry are unable to defeat the Thracian light infantry, as the latter’s numbers and deeper formation keep them in the fight.
On the far right, Satrap Petines has his Median cavalry in a hard fight (3 kills each) against Parmenion & his Thessalians. The Median numbers will eventually tell, unless Parmenion does something.
Alexander decides to ignore the tempting target to his front (Paphagonian cav flank) and let the Hypaspists handle them – he is desperately needed on the left flank, which is in very real danger of collapsing. He leads his companions and the remaining Prodromoi on the long ride to rescue Parmenion.
As ordered the Hypaspists charge the Pamphlagonian rear and they flee in panic, they will eventually flee off the board.
Craterus leads his phalanx in a charge against the Hyrcanians, but cannot reach them.
The Greek allied light cavalry comes to the aid of Parmenion and hits the Medes in the flank. They waiver at the new threat and are disordered.
Greek mercenary veterans finally get the better of Meleager’s phalanx (5:0 kills). They are pursued and overrun.
After another round of hard fighting, the Thracians numbers finally get the better of The Bactrian Noble cavalry (Thrace 4:2 kills) and the latter dissipate from heavy casualties.
On the far right, the Medes, even though flanked and disordered are putting up a hard fight (they pass a morale check of 3)
The Hyrcanian bow armed cavalry rally
The Thracian light infantry, recently victorious against the Bactrian Nobles, charge a unit of Satrap infantry.
The Agrianian light infantry work their way to the flank of the Greek mercenary hoplites and inflict 3 casualties with javelins.
Neither the Thracians or the Satrap infantry seem very motivated, as neither side inflicts a casualty. The “fight” goes on.
On the far right, the cavalry melee between Thessalians and Medes drags on; The Medes are wavering on the edge of a knife, but they hold on for now.
The Hyrcanian horse (w/bow) find their honor and turn to phase Craterus flank. They launch an ineffective volley of arrows at Craterus’ phalanx.
Meanwhile, the veteran mercenaries are having a hard time reforming and getting back into the fight (this will haunt them later).
The Persian skirmishers have an opportunity to aid the Median cavalry by flanking the Greek light cavalry, but they are unable to summon the courage to close with the enemy.
The satrap infantry is supposed to be outclassed by the Thracians, but they are giving more than they are taking (3 kills 0). But Thracian pride keeps them in the fight.
On the far right, Parmenion is unable to keep his Thessalian cavalry in the fight, as they dissipate from excessive casualties. Fortunately, the Medes still can’t seem to shake the Greek cavalry to their flank.
The veteran hoplites finally are able to reform so as to threaten the rear of Craterus’ phalanx.
Persian skirmishers still seem content to hold some worthless broken ground and continue to refuse to help their comrades against the Greek light cavalry.
Hyrcanian horse archers fire a volley into Craterus’ phalanx with ill effect (Yahtzee on armor save)
The Satrap Infantry continues their melee (2 kills each) with Thrace. Thrace is barely hanging on in a fight they should be winning.
On the far right, the Medes have finally had enough and route and are overrun by Greek light cav (the Greeks have been one figure away from dissipating for a while). The skirmisher failure to intervene is costly.
Alexander has completed his march and reforms the companions. Meanwhile, the few remaining lancers charge the Kappadocian nobles, while Alexander spies the juicy flank of the veteran mercenary hoplites.
Meanwhile the Hypaspists & Coenus’ veterans charge the Mercenary hoplites, while Craterus phalanx positions itself to help the Thracian infantry.
The charge of the Prodromoi lancers, though effective (1:0 kills) cannot route the Kappadocian Nobes (Pass a morale check of 3 because of numbers)
The Satrap infantry drive off the Thracians in a route, but their pursuit carries them into Craterus’ phalanx. For their part, the Thracians scatter to the winds as their unrestrained flight carries them into the veteran mercenaries.
The Hypaspists & Coenus’ phalanx get into a bloody fight (5 kills each) with the mercenary hoplites. The latter breaks and is overrun by the Hypaspists. The momentum of the pursuit takes Coenus’ phalanx into the Hyrcanian horse.
Macedonian Initiative – Alexander uses his last SIP
This enables him to reach the flank of the veteran mercenaries at the same time as the Greek light cavalry hit the phalanx in the rear
Coenus and his veterans easily defeat the Hyrcaian horse, and they route off the board.
Craterus & his phalanx defeat the hard-fighting Satrap infantry; they route but escape.
The Prodromoi defeat the Kappadocian nobles, who flee, but the proud Prodromi have lost so many they are no longer effective (dissipated).
Finally, the Companions & the Greek light cavalry defeat the Mercenary veterans, who are overrun by Alexander and his companions.
A complete victory by the Macedonians
Alexander & 8/8 companions (their best fight yet)
Greek Allied light cavalry 4/8
Coenus’ veterans: 10/18
Craterus’ regulars: 12/18
Agrianians light infantry: 10/16
Kappadocian Noble cavalry: 5/10 – but routing
Satrap Infantry 16/24 – but routing