Jason is apparently back on the Impetvs bandwagon, which is great as we have the cool fully painted 28mm armies that need to see more use. He had a cracking game vs Andy's Romans and was itching to take me on. I am now *somewhat* reformed and run my boys as the more likely EIR, rather than MIR. So no more kickass VBU 3 Lanciarii for me and no awesome Sarmatian Auxilia Cataphracts. Still, I did have a lot of Legionaries and some Sarmatian Auxilia on foot as my T Sagitarii. Jason took soft Gallic Legionaries with Germanic Allies, to give them some spine. Let the struggles for the purple continue!
400pts aside, mandatory two commands (I feel very clever in that one command is exactly 60% - the maximum allowable...) and half maxima in the armylists. My forces are to the left and Jason's to the right. I took a left wing of Mixed Legionaries, Auxilia and Funditores (clearly now mandatory...) and a right wing with my sole unit of cavalry, the Praetorians and the Sagitarii. Jason rocked up with three commands: Romans to his right, a command full of cavalry, and a command of tough Germanic Allied FP.
Jason's soft Gallic Legionaries took a while to get used to not being super-fast FL Warbands and the Legionary General soon fell behind the rapidly advancing Batavian Auxilia on his wing.
My Auxilia also raced up, since the opposing Roman General had decided to put his horse in the center and foot on the wings.
Meanwhile, his cavalry seemed oddly unconcerned about going past a forest where my balkan Auxilia had occupied. The Germanic Warbands tried to close the distance at a run and just got disordered for their trouble. Under the new Impetus revisions, their skirmisher screen was not going to save them from the waiting Sarmatian Sagitarii in the rough ground to their front.
The rain of arrows from the archers was devastating. However, Jason's skirmishing horse managed to do a lot of damage to my sole unit of cavalry and then that unit of Equites had the fun job of advancing up my right flank into successive turns of balista fire.
Meanwhile, back on the other flank - Jason's cavalry had surged forward, only to be beaten off by my Legionaries. So back his cavalry went.
The enemy had many irons in the fire though, as even further to the other flank, sneaky Batavians were swiftly fording the river. There was only the one unit of raw legionaries to stop them - but stop them they did!
On my right, the Praetorian commander Quintus was pretty comfortable letting the Germanic warbands slog the full distance toward him. The Sagitarii had done a lot of damage and even the Equites had managed to sweep past Jason's light Cavalry. Sadly, my own light Cavalry had fallen to the arrows and javelins of the enemy.
Maximus (my 'fair' general got upgraded so deserves the name to match the model) was a little more proactive. His Legionaries got stuck in to the enemy center. Ironically, being forced to retire saved the enemy cavalry from a nasty flank charge by my Auxilia from the wood. Despite the importance of the battle for the center, the enemy commander was nowhere to be seen....
Back to the right flank and the Germanic warbands discovered my secret weapon: T units in broken ground. In the right situation, archers make surprisingly good melee fighters. So the warband steam-roller got pinned and began to break-up as Quintus' two units of Legionaries sprang into action. My Equites even managed to hook round past the oposing light cavalry and run over the top of the enemy Balista.
The middle.... the middle was a mess. My Legionaries were having the best of it - just. Luckily (and it was lucky) the units assigned to screen the far left, and the camp, were holding the Batavians at the river. The enemy Roman general also stubbornly refused to get his legionaries to the fight, where they were desperately needed. Meanwhile, it turned out that the Balista belonged to the Cavalry command on the opposing side and all the hurt they had been taking broke them. Roma Victor... oh wait, can't use that one.
The gathering dusk forced us to break off the fight, though. I had high hopes of breaking the Germanic command (and with it hopefully Jason's army) but had a number of units on my center/left flank that were teetering on the brink there as well. If the center had managed to go more Jason's way for another turn, perhaps disaster would have befallen my army?
Thank for a hard fought and fun game, Jason. We need to play more of this.