View Full Version : Using minor allies for campaigns

Mark Davies
05-21-2009, 06:20 AM
Has anyone tried using the rules for allied contingents in the campaign rules as a way of varying one-off battles? For instance, by playing a game where each player gets an ally of 3 elements in addition to their army. It's a poor man's version of big battle DBA.

I've tried it once or twice as I work towards getting enough figures painted to play BBDBA. It occurred to me that it might add some interest to a campaign game to create a number of minor allies. These would each be 3 elements like a regular allied contingent. Players would bid for their control--I've not really sorted out the details of how. Some of the variables would be how well inclined the ally was towards that particular player, success or failure in a previous battle, and resources spent as an incentive.

These allies would have their own dice and would be controlled by the player whose diplomacy towards them was successful.

It seems very well suited to a HOTT campaign. It would allow allies such as an eyrie of eagles that might not sit well in a regular army and wouldn't make a very good army on their own, but would be ideal as a minor ally. Such an ally would be particularly appropriate as it could not be imagined as a province that might be easily dominated militarily by any player.

I was thinking of a semi-historical DBA campaign around AD 1140 in Britain in which minor allies might be marcher lords, Galwegians, Welsh princes, Orkney Vikings, and so on.

I'm sure there are possible problems with it--one is trying to balance the difficulty of getting them so that someone doesn't win simply by getting a whole swag of them, or at the other extreme, so that it's not worth the effort.

What do people think? Has anyone tried something similar.

05-22-2009, 06:04 AM
IIRC Mike Demana did a Roman Civil War campaign which allowed for recruitment of elements based on the campaign location. This created a variety of sizes of armies similar to a standard DBA army plus allies.

If you ever played Shogun/Samurai swords, there was an option to recruit ronin temporarily by paying for them. You could have a mumber of different ways to get additional troops -- money for mercenaries, ally with minor powers (see the Resources page for a way to have programmed leaders and nations), random addition based on location, etc.

Mark Davies
05-23-2009, 06:57 AM

I'll have a look at those resources.