Sunday, 1 February 2015

A Scordisci Incursion

No piccies this time, I'm afraid - I forgot everything except the figures for our latest campaign game, so this will be a relatively short report. One of the good things about an ongoing campaign like ours is that we occasionally get some match-ups that we don't usually see on the wargames table, if at all. Also, I am finding out a little about bits of ancient history that have eluded me so far.

One item that fits both of these comments is the continuous incursions of the Illyrian Scordisci into the Roman province of Macedonia. The Scordisci were a powerful tribal confederation in control of much of what we would now term the Balkans, and they gave the later Republican Romans a hard time for many decades, at one point overrunning much of northern Macedonia proper and reaching the Adriatic in Epirus.

On Tuesday we played them against the red tide of hopelessness, but despite their undoubted bravery the tribesmen were trounced. It was a game of four sections. On the Roman left, I was playing the combined Equites. Together with a little handy support from the Latin legionaries, I saw off the enemy's entire mounted contingent rather efficiently. To my right, Gordon ran the Latin legionaries, who bore the brunt of a ferocious warband charge with equanimity. Much hilarity ensued here, with all sorts of dreadful puns about hairy, flabby barbarians charging up and down what came to be known as Testosterone Hill in dire combat against the legions of Gen-Italia (the peoples of Italy). To their right, he also ran the Roman legions, who were up against Thureophoroi types. At our extreme right, Malcolm had the auxiliary contingent, comprising Thracian foot and light horse. He seemed to be having a good time there.

Rome won because the warbands advanced across terrain reminiscent of Cynoscephalae, which opened up a gap between them and the Thureophoroi. Some of the leftmost Roman legion moved into the gap, executed a swift left wheel, and crunched into the flanks of the warbands. Some damage to the Thureophoroi, plus the demise of the cavalry, saw the coalition disintegrate. They did take some of the Latins with them, along with the rightmost Roman legion. They panicked at the last minute and ran off en masse rather ignominiously - if that hadn't happened, it would have been a rather spectacular victory.

Much grumbling was heard from the Socii - always doing all the real work, Romans running away like wimps. Stirrings of discontent among the allies...

No comments:

Post a Comment