What happens when 4 experienced H&H players, 2 each side, fight it out with identical armies?

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Paul K
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What happens when 4 experienced H&H players, 2 each side, fight it out with identical armies?

Post by Paul K » Fri Feb 21, 2020 4:57 pm

We had a club meeting at the beginning of the club night, so I brought one of the 2 games from the previous week used for ‘training’ games. The meeting was concluded in little over 30 minutes and so, 4 of us decided to quickly spread the terrain and pitted 2 identical armies against each other; Tony and Dave had the red WOTR army and Chris and I the green and white.
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The Yorkists first move took them close to the central woodland
The terrain had a scattering of small hills and woods across the table which gave no significant advantage to either side. However, Tony and Dave won the di roll for first move and they used this to good effect as Dave’s infantry quickly advanced to occupy the central patches of woodland. Tony massed his cavalry facing our infantry on our left wing and the stage was set for a ‘merry dance!’ For the best part of 40 minutes both sides manoeuvred back and forth to try and find a tactical advantage.
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The Tudor infantry occupy the woodland on the left of the table to face the Yorkist cavalry.
After much head scratching, Chris and I decided to attack with our infantry which was concentrated on the left wing facing Tony’s cavalry. And, if and when Tony either removed or counter-attacked, battle would, at last, be joined. Tony chose to withdraw his cavalry behind the central wooded area which enabled us to swing our infantry attack towards the flank of Dave’s infantry defending the central woodland.
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The Tudor cavalry ready in column to advance towards their Yorkist counter-parts
With identical armies, this was always going to be a game of tiny margins. Tony and Dave combined their infantry and cavalry in and between the central woods ready to attack Chris’s cavalry on our right wing. This would take time, and my infantry assault on the flank would have to proceed quickly to gain any advantage and in doing so disrupt their preparations. However, Dave’s longbow found their targets – 8 x 7+ out of 8x D12 shooting dice; that’s great shooting! As a result of very stubborn resistance from Dave’s infantry defending the woods, my progress was too slow, and Tony’s cavalry charged home against Chris’s cavalry waiting on and around a 4 hex hill.
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The Yorkist longbow form a shooting line along the central wooded area as the Tudor line pulls back.
In contrast to the first 40 minutes, in the next 40 minutes all hell broke loose! The losses for both sides soon surpassed the 50% mark as combat outcomes, recoils and flee moves wrecked any plans for co-ordinated attacks! A unit of our heavy cavalry, plus a general, defeated and pursued one of their heavy cavalry with a general to the table edge. And after successive rounds of carnage, this left only one general commanding the remnants of each side!
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The Yorkist cavalry come across from the left to augment the Yorkist line.
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The Tudor infantry attack the Yorkist line but make slow progress against stubborn opposition
Chris and I through luck rather than good management had gained a 2:1 advantage in remaining units. At this point my brain went to sleep - I left our general rather exposed at the end of the line of infantry rather than pulling him back to safety. Unfortunately for us Tony’s brain was very much awake! He attacked and eliminated our general with a unit of heavy cavalry and bill-men. Chris was indignant, and he had every right to be! I had given the game to Tony and Dave in one careless moment. Our last general was raising back from the far table edge but would arrive too late to save our infantry.
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The heavy cavalry from both sides begin to eliminate each other!
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The final battle for the hill reduces both armies to less than half strength.
Game Analysis
This was a game which, after a very slow cautious start, accelerated rapidly into mayhem as these two identical armies eventually tore each other to pieces. The pendulum swung in both directions throughout until we finally gained the advantage, only for me to give the game back to Tony and Dave with a final silly mistake!
Kind regards
Paul

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