Thursday, 12 March 2015

Saga. The battle of Stamford bridge. Rewriting history

This Thursday saw a return to SAGA and the eternal adversaries of Anglo Danes and Vikings. This one was going to be a nail biter!

We go for the battle of the bridges. Basically get as much over the water as possible while stopping your opponent. This is the first SAGA scenario I have played and it proved to be a belter!

We decide on a 6 point game and despite not being fully sold on levy I figure they will give me a ranged atttack option over the river.

I go with my large unit of Hirdguard with a unit of eight warriors to charge / contest one bridge while my Warlord and unit of eight warriors will contest the other with the unit of archers in support.

My Berserkers lurk at the back, out of sling shot range and their role will be to decimate any Danes which make it over the river.

A viking's eye view of the bridge

"Come and have a go if you think your hard enough!"

The battle begins with an ineffectual exchange of missle fire across the river. I decide to save my die for movement and will only take a pop at anyone actually attempting to cross the bridge.

Handbags at 20 paces

With that in mind I spot a gap in Al's line and make a double movement across the river to exploit the gap rather then have to fight Al several times to clear the bridge. They wade into Al's unit of 4 Warriors and literally wipe them off the face of the planet! I hope this will divert over some of Al's forces threatening the western bridge.

A lightening dash across the river

I guess Al decides the best defence is a good offence and storms his large unit of warriors across the bridge. My archers take some pot shots and actually manage to drop two warriors!

Danes storm the bridge under a hail of arrows

My hirdguard beat back the warriors to their front and then rather then following them pitches into the unit of Levy. The reasons are two fold. One, I do not need as many ability boosts to kick in their teeth which will get them away from the river and two, I hope it will draw the defeated unit of Al's warriors to follow me rather then attempt to cross the bridge.

As a bonus Al decides to divert his Dane axes towards my hirdguard therefore weakening his attack on the western bridge.

The battle of the chopper is on!

I decide to bottle neck the bridge to stop Al gaining the extra attacks from the bigger band of warriors. This works really effectively and despite the larger unit of warriors he can only get 6 of the remaining 10 warriors engaged in the combat. The survivors suffer another volley of viking arrows.

"Hold the line!"

My warriors hold the Western bridge but only with massive losses. This forces me to commit my second unit to storm the Eastern bridge in order to take the victory.

"None shall pass"

Back at the Western bridge we have fought ourselves to a standstill with massive losses on both sides. Only my Archers have survived in anything like an effective unit but still fail to kill anything. LEVY ARE BLOODY USELESS!!!!!!!!!!

"Oh the pointy end flys towards the enemy.... right"

My warriors on the Eastern bridge take another kicking

We are into the end game and the whole battle is balanced on a knifes edge! This is more like it.

Caught up in the blood lust I decide to commit my Hirdguard to wiping out the Dane axes. In retrospect I should have held them back for the points but somehow it did not feel "Vikingly"

With the game so close and my warriors on the Eastern bridge being ripped a new one I decide to commit my Warlord with the remaining Berserkers. They had done a sterling job of shoring up the defences of the Western bridge and now I hoped they could clear the bridge for the warlord to cross in triumph!

Bloody Berserkers! The Dane warlord prepares to die!

The Berserkers go nuts and  kill off the Dane Warlord, but are sacrificed in the exchange. On the Eastern bridge my remaining warriors prepare to sell their lives dearly.

"Ok we lied. Some will pass!"

The spirits of the fallen watch one last combat as my Hirdguard chop the last Daneaxe to pieces. My warlord fails to cross the bridge and my Warriors do their best and manage to kill off a large chunk of the Dane warriors. 

Is it enough??????????

I final count up in the final move of the final turn shows........... Al gets JUST enough warriors across the river to draw the game!

What a cracker of a game!

Still not sold of Levy and it may be time to retire them.

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