So the scenario was this - the Catholics (me) had the tougher forces but had to fight prepared positions uphill against the Protestants (generally poor but with some good units mixed in and prepared positions).
The twist was I only had 100 pips to use. We agreed later that this would be a great 3 way battle with 2 players on the Catholic side as the bidding for pips would reach fisticuffs level pretty quickly (especially as a) Russ would use all his pips regardless and b) Mark would nick pips from his ally and then waste them on Fancy Dan manouvres).
The battlefield you can see below. Straightforward except for that bloody stream which ate up 50% of my pips trying to get tercios across them.
|The Protestant positions|
Ian's problem was only having one commander - who could be effective if he could stay in one place. I therefore had to stretch him using Bucquoy's command on the right.
The cannon therefore started banging away at each other - and Ian started rolling 6's and doing more damage to himself than I ever could). Shaken markers started springing up around his guns.
|Tilly gets across the river - very, very slowly.|
|Bucquoy moves across|
|Ian moves troops across to counter Tilly|
|Hello Mr Bounce|
|Lets try killing the gun instead..|
|Tilly buggers it up|
The same thing happened on the left - Tilly got into a good position, lined up for a charge then failed the roll (I think this was the first 20 on the bingo dice...). I was not amused. Still, I had managed to flatten 2 of his 3 artillery pieces. Snork!
Meanwhile Bucquoy was making a hash of clearing our right flank. He just wanted to bounce whenever it looked like we could get going. He finally managed to get into the redoubt but made very heavy going of it. Like bouncing when the enemy were shaken.
|Just get stuck in you French bastard!|
|Oh for Gawd's Sake!|
Tilly too was buggering things up - but he was at least over the crest of the hill and in touch with the enemy. He managed to Shake two units ahead of him but my Polish dickheads got in front of his cannon (therefore meaning I couldn't shoot my cannon at them) but couldn't charge them (needed to be Shaken) and failed to shoot them to be in a position to charge them. Bastards!
|Don't you bloody start!|
I then made things much, much worse for myself by moving my cavalry into shooting range. The idea was to shoot the Protestant line up while there was a gap to exploit. As it was, I got shot myself and with cavalry on 4's and 5's pretty much half of them went Shaken. One rout would be catastrophic (morale checks all around). Sure enough that's what happened and I lost a few bases which meant -3 on future morale checks.
The good thing is, I'll never be that dumb again!
|This is a monumental cock-up. Never repeat this. Ever|
|I bounce - again - against shaken troops.|
Tilly was still making heavy weather of the left wing as he kept delivering 18's and 19's. One was where anything other than an 19 / 20 would have seen them go in. Nope!
My cavalry were in a real mess and it didn't help that Ian popping at them with his forward gun kept on putting on morale checks - which
And Tilly threw another 20 for good measure. I was pretty much back where I'd started but was battered and bruised wheras Ian's troops had nary a scratch on them.
|Thanks for that!|
|Oh come on!|
|Cavalry out of dodge - but 2 tercios down.|
After a lot of to-ing and fro-ing, Tilly once again pushed forward and for once didn't bounce. Ian's troops were pushed back and I mover the Poles to get some shots in on Ian's cannon (which he'd sneakily re-manned). I also managed to finally kill off the forward gun (which had thrown a host of 6's and so routed when a general morale test was called for when Ian finally lost a unit). It was suddenly looking a bit brighter but I felt I'd made a hash of things and it wasn't looking too rosy. I decided to attack the Star (which held two of Ian's units) which would prove tricky as I was downhill and trying to cross a wall.
|Looking slightly better|
|We pause to regroup.|
Regrouping on the right seemed to do the trick and I was finally in a position to push forward again. After a prolonged fight I managed to push Ian off the Star wall but lacked the strength and distance to push on. Not wanting to crawl over and take shots each time, I stayed behind it for the time being. I also managed to finally take the artillery redoubt. Ian then made a cock-up of his own - facing up to the Poles on the redoubt, he ignored the tercio to his right. I duly ploughed into his flank with all the attendant bonuses but failed to take advantage as much as I could (throwing the 50th 1 on a d6 for damage).
|Ian's one mistake.|
|Kill them all!|
Tilly meanwhile was doing a bit of re-organisation himself and punishing Ian for the mistake with a cheeky flank attack. As mentioned, true to form it didn't go too well though and Ian charged me in turn - forcing me to back off. But it was to bring about a major consequence later...
|Flank attack - Taylor is out-Taylored!|
|You can't hear me laughing on this picture - but I was.|
Ian prophetically remarked that at this stage I was technically losing as I'd lost more units than he had. Oh, how that comment turned to ash in his mouth.
Tilly threw in just one unit (the one that had been charged by Ian previously) back into the unit that had charged them. The inevitable happened - 20 on the Bingo dice, and a Rout result. This caused morale checks amongst all his units within 8" and he failed, failed and failed again. His best result was a simple Retire, Shaken. Most of the rest just disappeared. This meant his right flank simply collapsed.
|Ian's left collapses|
|The damage - 18 units lost, 13 in one bound!|
|I like to cut it close!|
A great battle. The idea of limited pips does appeal as it stops a lot of the jiggery pokery and forces you to act. I do think it would be a great 3 way battle and would definitely want to try it again. Thanks to Ian for a great day - loads of fun!