Thursday, March 8, 2012

More SAGA!: Halfdan's tale.

More SAGA! Adam has got his Varangians all assembled and blacked to we had a clash, last Sunday.  The idea behind his army was to basically field these cool Varangian figs he found (and he is a big Eastern Europe nut) along with some Gripping Beast Slavs. That works well in this game as Harald Hadrada can have up to twelve Varangian guard and there is no reason why the supporting troops can't be Slavs, instead of Vikings. For this game, he had: Hardrada 1pt, 2pts of Varangians (one unit), 2pts of Warriors (two units), and one point of Levies (one unit). Halfdan was defending England with 2pts of Huscarls with Dane-Axes (one unit), three units of warriors (3pts) and a unit of Levy Bowmen (1pt). The goal, kill the enemy Warlord! Was Hadrada to meet another untimely end on English soil? 

March 4th, the Year of our Lord 1066. I am Halfdan Halfdanson, it's cold and snow is everywhere but we've left our mead and women to deal to this 'Hard Ruler' that dares to invade the King's lands. I hear word that he is some oath-breaker, fled from the Christian Emperor's service. So a Vagabond and runaway. My loyal Huscarls are with me and I have gathered some of the local Fyrd. The farmers I had join us grumbled a bit about having to fight in winter but Steapa looked at them in such an unsettling manner that they soon went to fetch their bows and join us. We can see our foe, clad from head to foot in heavy mail and with decorated Helms. What such rich and experienced men are doing raiding is beyond me but our duty is clear, no matter the mettle of our foe.

Lord preserve me. Hardada and his men came at us with incredible speed -  Saxon Peasants thinned out some of their lines with arrows but the heavy Varangians have plowed into the middle of our warband and smashed a hole! I must survive to see Hadrada stopped so I have pulled my Huscarls back to form a line just beyond where those Varangians can charge us.

That was a close call. I had to shout a bit at the men on the right to keep them from holing up in the nearest shelter but I think I can wear the enemy down now, then we will crush those who are left.

I confess it, I was prideful and too hasty to avoid the appearance of cowardice. I sent the Huscarls in too soon and they paid dearly. They cut the first enemies to pieces but I watched with horror as the Vikings gathered their scattered troops and...
...threw my best men back, fleeing in the face of a fresh unit of warriors. I could see Hadrada there, laughing with his head thrown back. I will not be bested by some jumped up Viking Oathbreaker but I am going to have to keep my temper. I still have some fresh Fyrd and these managed to smash into and slow down the last intact clump of the Vikings. It is a battlefield full of dregs now. Somehow, that cunning snake Hadrada has manged to keep all of his little bands alive but he is exposed and I can see he is tiring.
I give the call to what is left of my Huscarls. We form up to march behind a unit of the Fyrd. The Fyrd smash into Hadrada's Warriors, killing some and exhausting the rest. Those that survived the initial onslaught are too tired to resist and my men put the remainder to the Sword. We've bought the Viking Wolf to heel now, he has no men left to shield him from my Axe. Let the bards tell all the land the Halfdan Halfdanson slew the King of Norway!

Cheers for the fun game Adam. That charge put me on the back foot early and if I hadn't had some space (just) to unman-fully hide my best troops in the corner, you might have rolled right over me with Hadrada's Panzerdivision. In fact, if those levies you took had been just one more unit of Warriors then you still might have - so very close. 

Thanks for reading.


  1. Dude, how did I miss this post?
    Great write up as usual and a very fun game. Watch out now that I'm blooded.
    I'm getting some painting done as well as 'reading the rules' (tm).
    Eastern Europe Nut?
    A bit;-)

  2. Reading the Rules? That's cheating.

    I will be watching out - I barely scraped through this time. Luckily, I hear it is Poochie's Irish that are next target for the Panzerdivison? Remember, three peices of terrain and you roll for location ;)