Friday, March 30, 2012

Hexy Blocking Position

Today saw Game 4 and the end of the Sino-Bactrian Campaign. Strictly speaking the game should have been the Swamp land  scenario but it didn't look appetizing for either side so we opted for Hasty Blocking position which allowed me to field all but one of my units.

The Chinese blocking force arrives.

I swore to myself that I would take some proper pictures this time. I ended up taking one cell phone snap on about turn 2 and 1/2 way through picking up troops I suddenly remembered  about pictures and hastily faked the shot below. Oh well.

Essentially the Greco-Bactrian cavalry swept aside the Chinese cavalry (should I mentioned my routed Companion unit? nah why confuse things) and then, supported by an elephant crashed into a line of Chinese heavy infantry. These put up a fight and eventually brought the elephant down but the Cataphracts smashed through the line and then, after a long struggle pushed back and eventually routed the Chinese reserve of Heavy Chariots which had charged into them.   That brought the game to an end after about 14 action packed turns. The victory conditions are more than a little vague on this one so whether I had been slowed sufficiently could only be left as an open question while we proceeded to discuss our hex based adaptation of Basic Impetus.

   An artist's conception of what a confrontation between Chinese and Greco-Bactrian heavy infantry might have looked at.

Over all the hex based version works well but there have been a couple of niggley bits where it has been hard to translate the game to a grid. We made two decisions today, one was to worry less about being consistent and adapt things to make the hexes easier. Many of the issues revolve around melees where the rules are based on units not lining up, something the grid forces as well as restrictions on movement.

We have also found that our adoption of 1 hex = 5 units of distance has been less than satisfying with 25mm figures and Table Top teasers and gave us headaches tracking which adjacent units were in contact and which were just in javelin range. The proposed solution is to move to 1 hex=2.5 units of distance which will essentially double movement and ranges and allow us to count adjacent units as being in melee. Movement will be 2 hexes for heavy and missile infantry, 3 for light infantry, skirmishers and heavy cavalry and 3 for medium or light cavalry. Javelins will have a 2 hex range and most bows  a 4 hex range. That should open things up.

Of course this means we need to play another game. I'll probably put the Greco-Bactrians away. The next game is likely to be 13thC Scots vs English but possibly Pontics or Thracians vs Caeser.  


  1. Nice post! We haveno Chinese army in our club...may be one day, yours seems very nice!

  2. Ron's Chinese army is all old Ral Partha figures (available again from Iron Winds) apart from Hinchliffe chariots. They are nice.