This blog post should have been my last post of the year but due to the busy time of the year it was never published. Never one to waste work, here it is as planned:
No, I’m not going to do another post about my attempt at modelling Napoleons Carriage. I have made some more progress but this post is about my recent battles with Jasmin using our Saga armies. I hadn’t played these rules for some time, so when Jasmin asked if I fancied taking on her Irish warband it was too good an opportunity to miss. To be fair, I had also been thoroughly enjoying the Last Kingdom on TV, so any chance to shout ‘Shield Wall!’ seemed like a good idea!
Jaz is a new comer to saga and had never played before. I hadn’t played for at least a year and had not come across the Irish before, so to start with, things were a bit slow. After a few games though we are almost up to speed and the games are becoming just a little bit more competitive. The Irish have some really tricky abilities that can be quite lethal when used in combination. The most recent game was the River scenario where points are scored simply by getting your warband across the river and , of course, keeping them there.
My strategy from the start was to hold one bridge, to prevent the Irish from crossing, whilst forcing the other bridge to get as many of my warband across as possible. The Warlord and a unit of Hearth Guard were chosen to hold one of the bridges. The rest of the warband, a unit of Hearth guard and two units of warriors, would force the other bridge.
It was then a case of using the battle board to break up and slow the Irish to ensure that they were divided and unable to resist my steady advance. Jaz tried to use her unit of war dogs to score an early victory and get across the river first. However, the unit of Hearthguard soon put paid to these, although in doing so were nearly wiped out themselves.
Although just one solitary Hearth guard remained he lead the Warriors across the table and then on his own held off the Irish reinforcements! The Warriors, despite taking random arrow fire, held their nerve, crossed the river and staked their claim to the available victory points!
If all was going well at this river crossing, things were not so straight forward at the other. Jaz had decided that she would use the main bulk of her army to force a passage here so my Warlord and second unit of Hearth Guard faced off against their Irish counterparts who out numbered them two to one. Despite a valiant fight, my warlord and his retinue were massacred to a man but prevented the Irish from crossing the bridge.
It is here that the game ends as time had run out and the game had run for it’s scheduled 8 turns. On counting the victory points, the Anglo Danes have won the scenario, having got the most troops across the river. However, the Irish had the satisfaction of killing the Anglo Dane Warlord and all but one of his Hearth Guards. If there was to be a sequel, the Irish were in the stronger position. So in the end we considered the game to be honours even as we both had our victories to boast about!
We’ll definitely be playing more Saga in the future. It’s a great rules set for a club night game and with a good number of scenarios to choose from, there’s plenty to keep you occupied. Even better, there’s not too many figures to paint to put a retinue together. So may be I might just try some of those Irish warriors my self – Footsore do an excellent range…..
And so we are into a New Year! I did spend a few moments planning my next projects but first there’s Napoleons carriage to finish…