Tuesday, March 13, 2012

SAGA Iliad: Odysseus fights Hector near the Scamader

Jason managed to make it round after work, on Thursday. Fresh from doing VERY well vs Achilles and his Myrmidons, he was sure that Odysseus and the men of Ithaca would prove to be little trouble. The two forces met near two fords over a tributary to the mighty river Scamander.We were fighting here because this is the only 28mm terrain I have that is passingly suitable for SAGA Iliad - the general lack of snow is an issue. Something must be done methinks. Anyway. 5pts, no great heroes: Jason had Hector, Hearthguard (1pt), Warriors with bows (1pt) Two units of 12 Warriors (3pts). I had Odysseus (not feeling as heroic after his drubbing at the hands of Achilles), Eight Companions (2pts) and three units of eight warriors (3pts). So who won eternal fame this day? 
The ships were beached and my Lord Odysseus had led the men inland to fetch water, while we kept an eye out for wandering Trojans. The gods had decreed that day that this would be no minor encounter though - mighty Hector himself, with an honour guard, was nearby. Pallas Athena turned brave Odysseus' head at the right moment and he spied the unwary enemy hero on the horizon. As one, the Achaeans gave a cry and surged toward the stream, ready to assault the surprised Trojans.

Odysseus' companions were in the Van and they surged across the shallow water and hurled their spears at the Lykian warriors, ahead of them. They brought many of the Trojan allies down, but were over-eager for glory and got too far from their fellows. They quickly found themselves surrounded in enemy warriors and tiring too quickly.

Brave Odysseus yelled for more of his warriors to follow, and charged to rescue what remained of his best men. Wise Athena chose that moment to gift confusion upon the Trojans and they paused there, unsure how to best meet the renewed Achaean attack.

Buoyed by the sight of Odysseus pressing on to their right, more of the Achaeans surged across on the left too. All about the Achaeans, arrows rained down, but they seemed unable to even slow our advance. Many Greeks and Trojans had died already over these fords but Hector and Odysseus seemed grim and implacable. Neither would bear the shame of giving to the other. Odysseus was filled with the spirit of Victory though and his warriors butchered the Trojan archers.

Hector had been waiting for this moment though. Ares lent his arm strength and Phobos and Eris stalked amongst the Achaean ranks. Odysseus soon found himself facing the greatest of Trojan heroes, all alone.
I could see him there, across the stream, waiting with his shield up  as mighty Hector approached. The brash Trojans shouted out that Odysseus could quit the field and he would not give chase. Odysseus in his turn gave no answer, merely lowered his helm, dropped his shattered spear, and readied his sword. Our men had been thrown back at the other ford but there were more fresh men there to regain it and our Lord intended to hold the other by himself.

What is a man to do, who charges when the gods are against him? Hector landed only a glancing blow on the owl on Odysseus' brazen shield.  At that moment, he was blinded by a flash of light reflected off the owl's eyes; and Athena Nike steered Odysseus' sword arm as it swung around, above and below Hector's shield, wounding him grievously. Hector's remaining men gave a cry of despair and rushed to their lord's side. They bore him away as we remaining Achaeans cheered the hero Odysseus, and he wisely gave thanks to Pallas Athena.

Fun game, Jason. Very close - as SAGA often seems to be (except when getting crushed by Achilles *grumble*) and you were unlucky the risky move at the end didn't pay off for you. Those Trojan abilities are nasty, especially when they can be used on Companions and I will have to play out my attacks differently, in future. 

Thanks for reading. 


  1. I so love the comments on the pictures. Great read all over, I really should start looking into that whole SAGA thing

  2. Odysseus came good! Well, Athena decided to be very helpful this time, perhaps you should keep up the sacrifices to her?

  3. Tomsche, I highly recommend it. Everyone who tries it seems to have a good time and it is a relatively fast-playing game that seems to strike the right balance between depth and fun. I especially like the small armies. You get a 6pt force with a box of 40 odd 28mm plastics.

    Chris, Yes! Must give credit where credit is due or I could end up being punished in the cruelest way the gods can devise...

    1. Well done battle report, and I wanted to say how cool I think SAGA Iliad is. I am going to have to try and convince my gaming group to jump into it, they have Zulus on the brain right now but hopefully that wont last long.

  4. Hi Sean, I think one of the guys on the forum (laboratory) was musing about zulus but I don't know if he got anywhere with it. Good time to get into greeks, warlord have lots of support out there. Victrix are another plastic box to add to the options.