Welcome to my wargaming blog,
I'm Dave and live in Morpeth, Northumberland in the UK.
This may or may not be a regular thing, we'll just have to see how it goes.

I am a painter/collector of figures first and a wargamer second. My thrill in this great hobby of ours is to place that final well researched & painted unit into the cabinet. The actual gaming with the figures is an important but secondary experience, we all like to win, but it isn't the be all and end all of it, being with good friends and having fun is.
Hope you will enjoy reading this blog as much as I will writing in it.
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Sunday, 16 April 2017

Caesar Vs Pompey campaign.The first battle of Rome 49BC.

In the summer of 49BC Pompey with two legions plus supports moved from Naples to occupy Rome.
Mark Anthony advanced from Genoa with the 8th and 12th legions with Caesar coming from the north in support with the 13th. The first battle of the campaign was about to begin.
As stated previously one strength point on each block will be represented by one unit on the table. Cavalry strength points equate to cavalry units, auxiliary strength points equate to skirmish/missile troops but the strength points of general markers in the campaign can be chosen from legionary. cavalry or skirmishers. This gives a bit of flexibility to the choice if a general is present.
The game will be played using the excellent To the Strongest rules but using my hex mat. The hexes allow units to manoeuvre slightly more than the rules intended as they were designed to be used with a grid system but it is what it is!

The blocks above will participate in this battle, Pompey in green plus the cavalry he bribed to come over to his side this turn. Mark Anthony below and Caesars reinforcements. The game will be twelve turns and Caesar will be allowed to come on the table from the north on game turn three.

The terrain is randomly decided, Pompey is at the top of the picture, Mark Anthony at the bottom while Caesar will wait till turn three to appear from the north (left).

Pompey's force, six average legionary units, four raw legionary units, three cavalry and one skirmish. Two attached generals and Pompey himself senior/detached leader.

Mark Anthony's force, six average legionary units, two cavalry and three skirmish units. Two attached leaders and Mark Anthony senior/detached.

Caesar, five average legionary units, one cavalry and the man himself an senior/brilliant/detached leader. This force will arrive GT three.

Pompey decided that a quick victory was essential as he was aware that Caesar was advancing quickly to support Mark Anthony. Pompey pushed his cavalry to the flank to slow Caesar when he arrived while his centre attacked Anthony's position in a somewhat piecemeal fashion.

Occupying the higher ground Anthony's forces were inflicting heavy casualties on Pompey's legionaries with one unit routing already. Fortunately the rout did not spread to units on either side of the gap.
Black die donate units which have thrown their pilum while the red die show damage, a legionary unit will be destroyed if it suffers two of these while a cavalry or skirmisher will go on one damage. Units can recover these but will be better off attempting to do so from a position where they cannot be charged, hence the legionary unit in the bottom right of the photo has withdrawn behind it's support to attempt do so.

Pompey is forced to plug the gap in his lines with two of his raw legionary units from his reserve.

Turn three, Caesar appears on Pompey's right flank, with two of his reserve units already committed it doesn't look good. I know, Caesars units should be orientated so that they face the point of the hex, I changed that later!

A general view of the field on GT four, Caesar had failed to move last turn turning up two aces in a row while the two centres were simply grinding away at each other.

When it goes it goes, three of Pompey's units rout in his centre leaving a gaping hole, is this the end?
Simon has changed the rules slightly so that if a non skirmish unit routs then all units adjacent must test, they have two chances to save themselves. One legionary unit went one the right of Pompey's centre, the skirmisher failed as did the legionary unit. The two yellow shielded ones in the top picture managed to hold though. Not much consolation for Mr P!

That was it though, Pompey had lost all his tokens, you are allocated a number of them according to the size of your force, you loose one for each skirmisher unit destroyed and two for each legionary/cavalry/general. A huge hole had been punched in his centre and the time to get out of Dodge (or Rome in this case) had come.
All destroyed units counted for strength points taken off the campaign counters, Caesar occupied Rome while Pompey's remaining force limped back to Naples.
It will continue.


  1. Thank you, I really enjoyed that. I had wondered how you would handle the secondary force arriving and how strength points on the blocks would be lost - both mechanics look good and the boardgame looks like it will make a fine game engine.

    In the boardgame, if things for one side look particularly bad, they get the option of retreating after the first round of combat, taking attacks while doing so, but they stand a better chance of leaving the field without getting wiped out by doing this. Can the use of tokens in TtS be thought of as doing something similar?

    1. Cheers Norm, I see what you mean, if one side can start to get troops off the table beginging game turn four then that obviously means that the attackers will go hell for leather to destroy what would be the oppositions rearguard. But before that the defenders must defend at least three hexes in so that they can't just withdraw to the table edge ready to bog off when allowed. I kept the tokens in to donate when an army was 'broken' and must start to withdraw (if it can).

  2. Great AAR! I like how you are using the units lost to equal the loss of a strength point on the campaign counters. Great fun! Looking forward to more!

  3. Thanks Scotty, must get you and Neal around for the next one.