Tuesday, March 16, 2010

The Chevauchee at EWG

Tonight I ran a game of Impetus at the club, these are the best-ever set of Ancients-Medieval-Renaissance rules ever written.

Best. Rules. Ever.

I ran the Chevauchee campaign from Supplement 1, this include a map game that sets up the battle.

The sourcebook for the Chevauchee

Tonight, the English (commanded by Jonathan and Terry) landed and started their raid, but early on rolled an epidemic special event, which has the effect of weakening their army every turn. Therefore they were compelled to force a battle early in the game before attrition wore their force down. They were able to contact one of the French armies, but fortunately for the French, they were able to force march their second army onto the same location, thereby forcing a battle between the full combined armies of both sides. The smaller French army arrived exhausted after their forced march.

I had the players set up a flanked battlefield, with the English deployed in the northeast anchored on a central hill position, and the French small force entering from the west and the larger, fresh French army entering from the south.

Dave the elder contemplating deployment

The French deployment to the south

The starting positions on the west flank

The French started their advance from the south side

French knights tucked in safely behind a screen of crossbow skirmishers

And from the east edge, a bit more cautiously

Jonathan contemplating his response, fire perhaps?

Terry decided to advance his longbow to a position near the brow of the cental hill, facing south, they advanced carrying their stakes over their shoulders. Unfortunately, he just underestimated the ability of the impetuous French knights to close quickly, Dave took advantage and the impetuous knights charged up the hill into contact with the English. The English paid for their mistake dearly...

The French charge and sweep the hill
Even though Dave managed some pretty appalling rolls

Doh!
Dave the elder, training his dice upon threat of decimation

The outcome was not much in doubt once the French charge reached the English lines, a couple of English knights managed to draw some blood in counterattacks, and the west flank held out when the French charge faltered in point blank range of longbow, but French nobles completely overmatch longbow without stakes in melee and soon the French were feasting on roast beef in the English camp and Edward was forced to flee the field.

Crunch!

I think everyone enjoyed the game overall. A few observations of interest:
- everyone liked the way the map metagame influenced the battle, in this case both positionally (by feeding back from the map movement to deployment) and by forcing the battle to happen when it did.
- Game play rewards historically sound tactics. The bows were vulnerable without stakes. The French knights were uncontrollable, but their impetuous nature also allowed them to complete charges that would not have been possible for non-impetuous knights.

2 comments:

  1. Cool game Dave...

    Did you change the French force mix at all since the last time you and I played? At that time, we thought the French were overmatched.

    Kevin.

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  2. No, although I did increase both sides allocation of points proportionally just so there was more stuff on the table.

    When we played the French were exhausted and got shot to pieces. In the other playtest with Barnetson the French won, mainly because the English knights went on a foray and were defeated by the French nobles (I think, although I may recall that incorrectly).

    So I think the scenario and the rules properly punish mistakes.

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