The Game got off to a lucky start for me with 4 free moves before John's arrival and then I got lucky again as John entered through the opposite short table edge. The village had a stream running though it which complicated both our lives though John's more than mine. Terrain played a major roll in the game mostly in my favor though my own incorrect understanding of the rules played a bigger one.
With 4 free moves I was well advance in fact my lord as in the building with out a roof and had found loot before John and his boys were even on the table!
I also had men in the village buildings on the other side of the river.
My elites and missle troops have John's elites all alone this is a promising start.
a band of Warriors grabs the loot my lord found and I make my first (and less serious) mistake... I did figures there was one piece of loot per building... I should have stayed put and kept searching. Instead I have them start running for home.
The Elite troops of both war bands clash John kills two of my men...
but over the course of two rounds of combat I kill one of his and inflict 7 shock driving them back.
John brings in is big group of 8 warriors to help and not wanting stand up fight (especially with 18 levies that are just beyond the picture coming up) My men begin to slowly move back ward. hoping to draw John away from my looting troops.
One building is empty but we are ready to search the other.
Briton levies and warriors form up to give chase (got to love this Saxon eye view) the Briton Elites get reorganized behind their cover.
My second mistake! I have a flank charge but forget to use the Cape Diem card!
A savage fight follows...
I get the better of it but then John's slingers hit me and my unit breaks!
John's men try to advance they get my missile troops but fall short of my elites
One unit is away with it s loot!
John is chasing my elites... its a slow process when you want to keep the advantage of shield wall.
Other troops look to harass my looters on the other side of the river.
My men pause on the commanding position and wait for John to advance
We have our second bundle of loot...My third and Biggest mistake! I try to run for my friendly side of the board (one of the short ends) but I could have withdrawn via the long neutral side of the board (that is less than 18 inches way) at any time! (I might have lost some men for doing it... but, well you'll see) I realized this after the game when I reread the rules.
My elites have the attention of most of Johns forces.
I start my run...
I almost launched a desperation charge using Carpe Diem card but it just didn't seem prudent.
so I start my elites withdrawal..
My elites are off the board and my last band of men is one move (with reasonable dice) form what I understood to be escape. (again I could have left by the long edge at any time, so frustrating to know this now). If my card comes up first I can get away...
You guessed it John got his card and piled on as many bonuses as he could (clearly he believes the old adage that in war there is no such thing as "over kill") I lost five of six men and Cuthwulf, Osbert and Wulfric are all wounded in the exchange. My characters do escape but John has won a 3 point victory.
This one hurt as it happened and hurt more latter (as I realized victory was in my hand) but it was a tremendously fun game regardless. I had been too focuses on the combat rules I still had issues with (John and I have this down now) and had not paid enough attention to rereading the campaign and scenario rules (because I thought I knew them)... Bruises train as my fencing instructor used to say.