My partner in crime for l'Arte de la Guerre doubles competitions is Ralph Ashdown and once again we (OK mostly me) decided that a new army to be finished the day before the competition was just what was needed.
Palmyrans, as mentioned in an earlier post, would be the army of choice for the weekend. Not having anything to fit in with the designated competition period a new army would be required. After all, why use Ralph's Macedonians that are already painted and ready to go when you can buy a paint a completely new army in under a month? Practice games - that's almost cheating!
So I turned up (complete with a speeding fine on the six lane wide Newport Road into Cardiff - that is allegedly 30mph limit - I must have missed that change due to the high degree of concentration needed to navigate due to most of the road signs not having many vowels in them), and proceeded to put the troops on the table and play.
|Palmyran cataphracts and light cavalry advance on the enemy|
The first game was against Warring States Chinese. We came second but did a reasonable amount of damage to our opponents before they broke our army. Unfortunately I neglected to take many photos.
|Palmyrans against Warring States Chinese - the eventual winners of the competition.|
Our second game was against a Late Imperial Roman - we knew something strange was happening when we actually won. Huzzah our first win in our second year of the competition. Next year we are going for two wins.
|Cataphracts face off the Late Roman Cavalry|
My Saturday evening was spent in the company of the Midlands contingent celebrating Mark Clarke's half century that was looming on the next day. The l'AdlG umpire had arranged a surprise presentation of gifts and cake and a less than tuneful rendition of 'Happy Birthday' by the competitors.
|Even a cake was provided on Sunday after the first game with gifts and a song|
|A birthday gift from Tercio Desperrates|
Game 3 on Sunday morning found us facing Southern States Chinese. Heavy chariots and lots of infantry with 2HCW. The whole game hinged around the field in the centre of the table neatly positioned by our opponent. We diced to move/remove it got a 5 so moved it into our deployment area. Just right. They then diced also got a 5 and put it back where they originally had it - right in our way. Even our attempt to narrow the table with a waterway didn't help as the Chinese were boxed up tight on their left flank.
|That wretched field|
Game 4 saw us facing a Patrician Roman (the army of choice for a lots of players over the weekend) and the inimitable Tim Porter. Tim and his partner had not been having a good weekend with three losses and all to play for in the last game. Lack of terrain and poor positioning of our troops led to our rapid downfall.
|Tim Porter prays to the dice gods for anything but a one|
Tim Porter's detailed account of our last game. Opinions are his own!
|We had some outstanding die rolls on our right flank and were wearing the Romans down but they outnumbered us and the rest of the battle was already lost.|
Overall it was a really good weekend with four interesting games and friendly opponents. We are already planning for next year.