The Waving Flag: ADLG: Northern League Round 5 (Manchester, 06 Nov 2022)

Wednesday 9 November 2022

ADLG: Northern League Round 5 (Manchester, 06 Nov 2022)

Three weeks after my trip to York for "The King In The North", and three weeks closer to moving house, I ventured in to darkest Manchester for the final round of the 2022 Northern League.  It was my last event before all my hobby stuff was packed away prior to the move.

A busy hall late in the day.  DBMM on the left front and ADLG everywhere else.

I've played many a game at Eccles in the winter and Sunday was exactly what I expected: cold!  I didn't take my padded gilet off all day.  My feet got so cold I had to go for a walk between the second and final game just to warm them.

Despite the record numbers of ADLG players present, the lack of space wasn't really a problem as far as playing went.  As expected, there was no space between tables but everyone seemed to adapt well.

The only real negative was the atmosphere.  I can only describe it as businesslike.  In comparison, the York competition was far more relaxed and convivial.  There was a definite feeling of "routine" about the day too.  It wasn't unfriendly, but as there wasn't a lot of space to socialise, and it was very cold, the day tended to be "all business" and not as enjoyable as I'd hoped.

On the positive side, I was surprised to see just how many commercially produced cloths and mats were in evidence: all brought by the players.  This is an encouraging trend and I'll have to treat myself next year.

Event Summary

Event Northern League Round 5
Date 06 Nov 2022
Rules Version ADLG 4
Theme Open
Venue Magdalene Centre, Eccles, M30 8JD
Army Ilkhanid Mongol with Armenian Allies
Army list 270.0.05
Army date 1329 AD
Entrants 22 players (a League record).
My results 20th of 22 with 77 points. 1 draw & 2 losses.
All results Final placings.

Strategy & Review
Being lazy, I decided to use the same army as I'd used at York.  Having exposed my approach with this army in a reasonably popular blog post, I was a little worried that I'd be less able to surprise my opponents.  Sod's law ensured my first game was against someone who'd been at York.

I hoped that the strategies I used at York would stand me in good stead.  Once again I intended to wait until my opponent was fragmented then strike.  Sadly, this only worked in the first game.

I fought in the steppe and defended in all three games.  Previously, this had allowed me room to manoeuvre despite moving second. However, in games two and three it worked against me as my opponents were quick to press on.  My room to manoeuvre was further restricted because, unlike at York, nearly every enemy unit seemed to shoot.

If I was to face these armies again I would definitely consider a flank march to sow doubt in my opponent's mind and possibly slow their advance across the table.

Now, with apologies for the poor player portraits that follow, read on if you want more detail.

Game #1

Opposition Charles Gronau
Army Classical Indian
Army number 79
Army date 400 AD
Initiative Won
My Posture Defender
Terrain Steppe
Game time Timed out
Attrition Scores 14/22 to 8/24
Decisive No
Points 40 to 49
Result Draw

My best result of the day!  I faced two wings of two elephants flanked by 1/2 Medium Swordsmen 1/2 Bowmen (ADLG Death Stars) with a small allied impact cavalry command between them in the centre.  Charles was hampered by an unreliable ally and lots of poor command dice to begin with.  He wasn't going anywhere quickly.   Meanwhile, I was working the flanks.  In covering his right flank, Charles left an opportunity in the centre for my knights, but they couldn't break through.  The game timed out with neither side having a major advantage although I'd a lot of units with damage from shooting.

Game #2

Opposition Kevin Johnson
Army Medieval Scots
Army number 232
Army date 1420
Initiative Won
My Posture Defender
Terrain Steppe
Game time 90 minutes
Attrition Scores 22/22 to 6/28
Decisive Yes
Points 14 to 96
Result Loss

What can I say!  Wall to wall mediocre longbows with four impetuous heavy nights covering one flank.  Almost everything I didn't want to face.  As the attacker Kevin closed down the space and started shooting.  Although I shot back, and they were mediocre, I had a long run of poor dice rolls that caused loss after loss.  Against the heavy knights my cavalry struggled and died.  A quick game.  I should have used a flank march.

Game #3

Opposition Mick Hood
Army Thematic Byzantine
Army number 126
Army date 745
Initiative Lost
My Posture Defender
Terrain Steppe
Game time 90 minutes (about)
Attrition Scores 22/22 to 16/24
Decisive Yes
Points 23 to 87
Result Loss

A game to forget despite Mick kindly choosing to attack me in steppe.  He had lots of bow armed mediocre cavalry and few infantry.  Again my scope for manoeuvre disappeared quickly.  Mick used his cavalry well; in coherent lines or large blocks while I attacked in isolated packets.  I remember rolling some awful command dice at crucial moments which might have got me a few extra points.  All the same I did cause quite a bit of damage, including killing an included general, however the outcome was clear from very early in the game.  Lessons learnt.

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