The Waving Flag: The Re-Mystified On Tour :: Stoke Challenge 2013

Monday 15 July 2013

The Re-Mystified On Tour :: Stoke Challenge 2013

As you can tell by the picture I achieved a place at this one day, 650 point Field of Glory competition.
The trophy is for second place but really I was third: Kevin Johnson did the gentlemanly thing and refused to win his own competition. Well done Kevin for setting such a positive example and a superb job organising the day's events.

Perhaps the competition was most notable for the third round match between myself and Simon Clarke: when Vexillia played Lurkio! More detail later. The results are given below (click on the image for a large version):

Unfortunately, I had a camera failure and only one photograph from the day proved usable. I'm sure my first two opponents are very grateful for my photographic failings.

Game #1 against Early Gustavan Swedes (20-5 win)

Keith Spedding commanded my first opposition of the day. Battalion guns and salvo Foot everywhere. Having not played against this type of army much before I was grateful for Keith treating me gently and helping with the special rules associated with Swedish brigades and battalion guns.
This was the proverbial game of two halves.

After an hour or so I was in trouble: lots of bases lost, little damage inflicted and a few battlegroups broken. Then things changed. I attacked and some of Keith's battlegroups began to waver then break. As they were positioned close together the subsequent failed cohesion tests were costly and Keith's right collapsed winning me the game.

Keith admitted that, mid way through the game, he thought he had me beaten. It certainly looked like it to me too, making the comeback victory all the sweeter.

Game #2 against Later Swedes (4-21 loss)

More Swedes. This time commanded my fellow MAWS member Dave Redhead. I destroyed his right flank but not before his determined horse broke my superior cuirassiers on my right and only just missed taking a second battlegroup of cuirass in the flank in the pursuit. The second battlegroup of cuirassiers didn't last long either.

Meanwhile the Swedish infantry were attacking my artillery who were supported by a battlegroup of pike and shot. Losing to superior salvo foot without rear support or a commander nearby meant the end was quick. Another nearby battlegroup broke on seeing their friends break and the game was over.
What was instructive was that two events above gave Dave 10 of the 11 points he needed to win.

Game #3 against Later Imperial Spanish (9-11 loss)

The final game was against Simon Clarke. The similarities between us were scary: we were close together in mid-table on the day, we both run wargames businesses, we both were using armies based on Donnington figures, and the armies had 11 battlegroups and very similar compositions.

The similarities end there as Simon is a far more experienced player and was very helpful with one or two of the nuisances of the game I'd not come across before.

After one win and one loss each I suppose this game was always destined to be close. Yet again I didn't get off to a great start. My only success was with my artillery which quickly fragmented a battlegroup of Simon's horse and they stayed that way throughout the game until they were broken by a rampaging pike and shot regiment.

Simon's excellent shooting and sterling defence by his dragoons had my left flank in tatters in next to no time. My only success on the left was chasing his light horse from the field. At one point Simon had 10 of the 11 points he needed.

As in the first game the fight back began in the centre and my right. More importantly Simon ran out of obvious opportunities to gain more points. Then I recovered a unit of broken cuirass saving two points. Had Simon's light horse still been on the table it might have been different.

Elsewhere, and well away from the superior pike and shot regiments, things were slowly improving as enemy bases were removed and units broken. When time was called the game was in the balance which given my start I judge to be a sterling performance.

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