Sunday 23 February 2014

Massacre at Saguntum

Romans in a bad mood.  Loads of dead Celtiberians.  That's all there is to say, really!  Billy from Ayrshire and I played the doomed tribesmen, while Simon from Ayrshire and Gordon ran the rampant legions.  A few photos:
The centre of a Republican Roman proconsular army as seen from the perspective of their soon to be victims.  Their left was anchored on a marsh, and their right was festooned with loads of cavalry.  They didn't even bother with any Triarii...
The first moves, as seen from off the Roman right and Celtiberian left.  Romans on the left of the picture as you look at it.  The Romans have some Spanish auxiliaries in this battle, light horse and caetrati.
The same moment from the other side of the field.  The large numbers of tribesmen here are going to be struggling to get into the action, so we are going to have to hope that the centre warbands can make some inroads against the legionaries.
First blood goes to my Spanish cavalry at the left of the Celtiberian army.  My light horse easily destroy their turncoat opponents.
However, being rather excitable chaps themselves, some of them pursue a bit too far and meet a large unit of Roman Equites coming the other way.  You can probably make out a large traffic jam developing in the distance, towards the top left of the photo.
After destroying one of my light cavalry units, the Equites lose control themselves and advance without orders.  This will give me more time, but all it will really do is postpone the inevitable.  The Romans have superiority here.
A gratuitous ground level shot of the legions.  From the look of it, the Spanish cameraman is about to be on the receiving end of a volley of javelins from the Velites...
Romans continuing their remorseless advance.  The tribes at the very top of the photo are well out of the battle.
Hastati versus a warband.  An action close-up for a change.
Massive dust clouds raised by a thundering warband charge.  Shame they couldn't hit anything once they got there...
The entire Roman army has pressed forward from their right.  Masses of Celtiberians impatiently wait their turn in the far distance.
This is the traffic jam at the far side of the field.  The fizzled charge of the central warbands has left everything here waiting.  And waiting...
Yet another cloud of dust, and again all for little true result.
The lack of any inroads being made by the central warbands has kept the rest of the army out of the fight, and the Romans efficiently munch their way through.  None of the Celtiberians at this end of the battle saw any action, so they'll just have to wait until the next time...

Half of the tribal army was destroyed, which translates to 52% of the army's value.  The Romans lost the Velites as usual plus some measly Hastati and Spanish Light Cavalry: 14% of the army's value.  The Celtiberians retire to their hills, secure in the knowledge that the Romans aren't strong enough to follow them and invest Numantia.  This means a stalemate in Hispania until one side or the other gains enough reinforcements to make a push.

We then rolled for the next campaign events.  This Roman army recovers a bit (well, takes a holiday, really) which brings the first campaign season to an end.  Summer 149 opens immediately with a Roman attack on the Macedonian army in Epirus.  Originally I was going to run this one at the club in a couple of weeks' time, but my 50th is coming up, on the Ides of March, funnily enough, and I have some socialising to do, including hosting a large game here.  I can't invite everyone I know, so I'll stick to about a dozen of my longest standing gaming mates and ancients players.  A double-size helping of Republican Romans against Later Macedonians: the Fourth Macedonian War is well and truly under way.


  1. No matter what you do, Romans are tough to beat. WB's never seem to derive much benefit from Impetus although in one of our games they did. Sometimes I think they should at least get automatic Impetus 1st round. Nice looking game. Enjoy your reports. Wish I could get our group to play Ancients more often, but we're into too many other periods.

  2. Thoroughly enjoyed the company and the evening. Always a very nicely iced cake when accidentally being on the winning side. My photos all turned out u/s but yours look good.

  3. Great looking game Paul! Republican Romans are always a tough nut to crack.

  4. 52 percent of the Spanish army destroyed? That is a massacre, indeed! Enjoyable BatRep.

  5. Good to see your recently painted Spanish begin as they mean to continue ;-)

  6. Thanks for looking, everyone, it was indeed a bad day to be Spanish or Celtic or whatever. However, I have a cunning plan for what to do to those Romans when they eventually venture into the interior...

  7. Warbands need some early luck against Romans don't they? They were able to negate your numbers effectively and then chew through them one at a time... ouch!
    A great little report and beaut close-up photos, thanks

    1. Hi James, thanks for coming was not a good day to be a non-Roman!