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The Last Conformist
04-06-2008, 01:10 PM
Today was held Dragon's Den's Blodbadsmästerskap ("Bloodbath Championship"), as small open tourney to which I brought my Teutonic knights. Success was to prove ... elusive.


My first game was against an Italian Condotta army, using the Littoral option; the waterway ended up on my left flank. Deploying my crossbowmen towards it successfully neutralized the naval landing by 2x3Kn, but along with poor pips contributed to bad matchups when the main battlelines clashed, and after a fairly brief fight I was defeated 2-4.


The second match was against Medieval Scandinavians (d). Naturally I became the attacker and the board edge die came up '2', meaning the WW was to my back. In a bit of a panic I put a spear in the camp, which predictably came to grief when a Scandinavian blade promptly rolled the two up necessary to kill it, meaning I counted as three elements down. My knights and light horse fairly quickly dealt with the other landing elements (a knight and another blade), but then the Scandinavians' main force reached my, naturally disorganized, battleline and killed a Cb. Another 2-4 defeat. This player went on to, with the help of two further landings in the enemy's back, win the tournament.


Third game was against Early Poles. I don't think I did any major mistakes in this one, but neither did my enemy, and his pips were decidedly better. That hurt since lots of woods and marsh on the battlefield made manoeuvre expensive. After the smoke cleared I had lost 3-4, ending any hope of a decent placement in the tourney. New goal - don't finish last!


Next on came the Xi-Xia. The battlefield was effectively featureless, but the fighting nonetheless became very confused between last-minute matchup dancing, recoils from shooting, and detachments charging off alone. My left flank dissolved in a thin mists of ones, but recovery looked possible as a pair of my knights smashed through the Chinese centre, killing a Bw and two light horse. Unfortunately, at this point my pips decided to run out and my opponent was able to pick off a couple of isolated elements, handing me another 3-4 defeat. Ouch. Ouch ouch ouch!


Finally my last game and chance to redeem myself. Facing Alexandrian Macedonians, my Teutonics for once got to set up terrain and, possibly not in the best of sportsmanship, put a big forest bang in the middle of the table. The idea was to force the Macedonians to either split the phalanx (giving me more flanks to nibble at), or send it all one way, essentially ceding me the other flank, while also giving my superior contingent of bad going troops (counting the Cb) somewhere to hang out. The result was they spent a lot of pips moving the Pk back and forth, but their pip rolls were so much better than mine I couldn't effectively punish them for it. To make things worse, their psiloi went berserk, killing my Ps and Sp before finally going down. This turned what might have been an easy victory to a gruelling one, the final score being 6-4 after two Pk that had detached from the rest of the phalanx ended up surrounded and killed by my crossbows and cavalry. Phew!


After the scores were added up, I finished second-to-last :o (of six players). I did, however, win the special bloodbath prize :D , as the player with the highest total casualties (friendly and enemy) in one's battles. No less than 36 elements were eliminated over my five matches; two players tying for second place at 28 casualties.