H&HM WOTR Lancaster v Yorkist

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Paul K
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H&HM WOTR Lancaster v Yorkist

Postby Paul K » Sat Jun 08, 2019 1:02 pm

This scenario pitched two War of The Roses armies with very different compositions against each other. The Lancastrian army (in red), had 5 units of mounted men-at-arms, equal numbers of billmen and longbows. The Yorkist army (in blue), had 2 units of mounted men-at-arms, 2 units of hobilar light cavalry, 3 units of continental pike, and the same number of billmen and longbows as the Lancastrian army. Both armies had 4 generals.

Terrain layout with central 8 hex escarpment and 8 hex hill

The Yorkist cavalry and pike advance to a line 2 hexes away from the escarpment

The terrain layout had an 8 hex escarpment place centrally with a 4 hex wood directly behind. Four further wooded areas, 2 each side, were located towards the left and right of the table with an 8 hex hill linked to the extreme edge of, and at right angles to, the aforementioned escarpment. The Lancastrians (Gary, Tony and Dave), won the di roll for choice of table edge but deployed first. The Yorkists ( Chris, Tim and I), deploying second, made sure our cavalry was on the left of our line and merged our 3 pike units into 2 pike blocks of six stands.

The Lancastrians advance and the Yorkists pivot back away from the escarpment

Lanscartians require 7+ to hit - excellent shooting destroys a unit of Yorkist longbow!

After taking note of the position of the Lancastrian heavy cavalry, we decided to keep away from the steep slope of the 8 hex escarpment and advance up the right-hand side of the table with our infantry. As expected, the Lancastrians advanced their longbow units to take up position on top of the escarpment and 3 units of heavy cavalry quickly moved along the road towards our cavalry on the left. In response, in our next tactical move we withdrew our cavalry to the right behind our infantry which we started to angle back away from the escarpment.

The Lancastrian cavalry prepare to charge

Yorkists line with central pike waits

We positioned our unit of multi-barrel guns on the hill, but these were soon disrupted by shooting from the Lancastrian longbow on the escarpment. The open ground in front of the escarpment was soon occupied by the Lancastrian heavy cavalry and infantry taking up position ready to charge. Thankfully for the Yorkists, there had been enough time to form a strong defensive line with the 2 pike blocks in the centre, out of range of the enemy longbow on the escarpment.

The Lancastrian charge goes in - first contact!

The billmen from both sides were fighting for possession of the 8 hex hill. The Yorkists had advanced from the cover of the two areas of woodland on the right, which had provided a deterrent to the 2 units of Lancastrian heavy cavalry within charge range. When the Yorkist eventually gained the upper-hand in the battle for the hill, one of these two units were eventually committed into the hand-to-hand combat redressing the balance, along with some excellent shooting from the Lancastrian longbow.

The Yorkist line holds, then the pike blocks advance against the now stationary Lancastrian cavalry

The Lancastrians are forced back in front of the escarpment and back along the road

The Lancastrian heavy cavalry charged against the ‘C’ class pike blocks and their supporting infantry and unit of heavy cavalry. This was totally unexpected! We presumed that they would disrupt the pike blocks first by shooting with the longbow units which had moved down from the escarpment. The resulting round of hand-to-hand combat saw one unit of Lancastrian heavy cavalry destroyed and another recoil back disrupted along with its accompanying general. The Yorkist followed up after combat which became the start of what turned out to be an unstoppable advance.

With most Lancastrian units disrupted the Yorkists prepare to deliver the final blow to destroy the right wing of the Lancastrian army

To gain full advantage of this unexpected turnaround the Yorkists committed both heavy cavalry units, both hobelar, billmen and 2 generals as well as the 2 pike blocks into the counter-attack. The next round of combat saw 2 more units of Lancastrian heavy cavalry lost along with accompanying units of billmen, longbow and general. Other longbow units recoiled disrupted only to be caught and destroyed in the next Yorkist tactical movement phase.

Yorkist cavalry attack the Lancastrian infantry on top of the escarpment

This giant left-hook of a counter-attack continued along the road and up along the ridge of the 8 hex escarpment lead by the two Yorkist heavy cavalry and a general. A unit of Yorkist hobelar light cavalry blocked a potential charge from the one remaining Lancastrian heavy cavalry unit while the remaining Lancastrian infantry was being trapped and destroyed in and around the 4 hex wood behind the escarpment. At this point the game was concluded!

The remnants of the Lancastrian army surrounded near the woodland

Game analysis
This was in many ways an unexpected Yorkist victory against a Lancastrian army with a good number heavy cavalry and a measured terrain advantage. Pinned back into a strong defensive line, the failure of the Lancastrian cavalry charge resulted in a Yorkist counter-attack which proved unstoppable. The 8 hex escarpment which had provided the Lancastrians with an initial terrain advantage, eventually worked against them in that it prevented units coming to the support of their right wing when the attack went pear-shaped.

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