Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Hail Caesar- Putting it to the test!

The battle line are drawn, a whopping 325+ models

We played our first game of Warlord Games new "Hail Caesar" rules last night and I am glad to say it was great success..despite the mandatory rulebook scouring the game moved along, well played well and most importantly felt like a "real wargame" . After years of Wargaming with results determined by random dice idiocy. It was great see a game where I felt the randomness was in "all the right places". I really felt like we were in control of our forces and results were risk vs reward based on choice of engagement. I think there is good balance in this games effectiveness between the excellent orders systems, the minimization of shooting, (where it can, of course be deadly, but not game controlling) and a great Hand to Hand systems, most of our questions had to do required movement due proximity of enemy units and what happens to units that have retreated have not broken. I answered 99% of these myself by going the rule book in detail with examples of our own play fresh in my head. (Disordered but unshaken unit moves off the table is it destroyed?)

Games is big enough that I can only fit half in a shot.

Mocked up command stands. Hail Caesar recommends round bases for command units and square for regular units for easy id...I like that idea...looks cool too.

Our game was set toward the end of the Dark Ages with my English Forces (Saxon /Norman) vs Muslims circa 1100AD either an unaccounted for skirmish or something that could have been during the First Crusade, Rich ran his awesome Arab force which can easily proxy just about any Muslim force from Ancient times up until 1400 or so thats a pretty good investment as a historical army and that being the case his force is pretty large and mostly painted as he been working on it for a couple years now.

This was not good for Rich's Ghulam Heavy Cav., we got a bit cocky after this and decided to try out a "sweeping advance" sounded good in practice but I ended up disordered, facing another cav charge, not such a good idea after all.

Norman Knights in the flank couldn't break these guys one of the only incidents in a 3 hour game were fluky dice roll had any impact.

My Saxon forces on the other hand are straight up to Hastings era force (Alfred to Harold), so we added some Normans in to round it out to be a joint English force similar to what I imagine Henry the would of looked like although I am sure he would have had much more Cavalry. Yes I know my army is completely bare lead or primed, at this point. But since my last Hail Caesar post I made alot of progress with the modeling and figuring out "what" I want this army to look like, which was something I wasn't wrapping my head around with WAB. So do expect some paint soon as this game is winner and if I am loving it I am surely painting it. Although there are rules for a multiplayer game, we played it as one on one, even thou Aaron was running one of my Division with the Norman additions to my force.

Conquests Norman Knights..a great kit and to scale..with Gripping Beast, Crusader and Perry well with Warlord plastics..not always the case with new plastic figs.

Army lists are posted here courtesy of Chicago Terrain Factory.

Playing on the full 4 x 8 table was really the minimum required here, as when all was laid out there was over 325 models on the table. Now that's what a proper wargame should look like! There was too much going on to field a battle reports see the comments under the photos for some insight into the battle. The Muslims won in squeaker mainly due to my shaken Huscarls who were managing to holding fast despite being "shaken" eventually retreating into a hill and being destroyed on a tied combat.

End of the game here, my Huscarls taking there second flank hit of game, after winning and breaking a flanker in a previous engagement. tied the combat with only 1/2 attacks..force to make a break test..I rolled a "5" with no modifier, I had taken 6 wounds at this point my Stamina total so I was "shaken" thereby making my break result.."Give Ground Disordered with Supports together" While I didnt have any supports I retreated straight into that hill to the right, which broke me.

Look for lots more Hail Caesar soon, as the 2012 Adepticon Ancient online Campaign incorporates multiple rules sets (not just WAB)

My Crusader Viking Raiders here on the right were the money, Destroying those light cav to the top of the photo and doing a sweeping advance into the other unit of cav, destroying them in two turns. The Vikings "Tough Fighters" rule, gives you one failed attack reroll, you wouldnt think one die is a big deal but it is...these guys where my all -stars.

4 Wounds and two units of enemy cavalry later but still solid and victorious!, alas they weren't in the middle of the table were we eventually got butchered....


Robert said...

I cannot wait to get my hands on these rules. Your Normans and Saxons are really inspiring me (even without paint) to get mine on the table. I have nearly 200 painted Saxons and close to 100 Normans. I have enough unpainted to do both armies again. I love Dark Age warfare. I hope to test out Clash of Empires soon. I just got the rules over the weekend.

Angelic Despot said...

Great. It's good to see more reviews of Hail Caesar. Encourages me to give it a go.

Paul O'G said...

I too am itching to play HC and recently got the book. We have been doing a lot of Dark Ages skirmish battles lately, and it owould be fun to have our warbands as a single element in a much larger engagement.



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