Last night saw another epic battle with George and Pat L's Chinese taking on Marc and my Mongols. We had four commands plus baggage. Three were mixed Cv and Lh and the fourth was made up of 8 hordes, a Cavalry general and four Lh. Marc took the first two commands with the Cv(S) and I took a mixed command along with the Hd.
The Chinese set up first with a group of artillery in the centre flanked each side by Bow(X) and with their horse on each wing. We responded with our three horse commands set out in line 1-2-3 with the horde command behind the centre and the baggage behind that. Pip dice were assigned the same way. Our cunning plan was interesting. Marc set up his first command opposite the Chinese right wing Bow(X) and his second command facing the artillery.
"What's your plan Marc?" I asked
"Going to charge the artillery" says Marc.
"Sure about that?" says I
"Yep" says Marc
Now Marc is an experienced gamer and an intelligent guy overall but he does have a preference for Viking and Orc (Charge! and the casualties be damned!) armies and this was only his second game of full on DBMM. So I didn't press the matter.
What we wound up with was pretty much the completely wrong way to deploy a Mongol army - In a line across the board allowing all the Chinese to fight and more importantly to shoot if we got close enough. Marc is not to blame as I knew better. Actually I was kind of curious to see what when his horse hit the artillery. If they survived, they would have torn a hole through the Chinese centre.
The Chinese moved first as I recall, pushing their horse out on each flank and advancing the right flank bow. We responded with some monumentally good pip dice from Marc. He pushed his left flank command forward, lining up to clip the edged of the Bw(X) and take on the Cv in his area and advanced his second command to just out of reach of the artillery. Meanwhile, I pushed my Cv command forward with their Lh component prancing deep around the Chinese left flank. The smattering of Lh connected to the Hd command also moved forward.
With 300+ points on each side, the game took us almost 4 hours to complete so I'll spare you the gory details (not that I remember many). On the right, my intent was to push forward to protect the baggage, and wipe out George's horse which should have been achievable. Instead, I got tangled up with George's horse command. I pushed the Hd cavalry forward in support taking a bit of a risk due to some nearby Chinese bow. That shooting combat came out to a 6-2 roll in George's favour, costing me a general. The rest of my dice rolling was similarly dismal*, and George as usual managed to thwart my every move. This cost me the other command breaking both my commands.
On our left, Marc re-thought the Battle of Balaclava deployment and instead used the Mongol's mobility and his high pip rolling ability to move his right command back behind his left into support of his attack on the Chinese right wing. My understanding was that his combat rolling was also abysmal, but at least he killed some Sung. In the end, my two dead commands coupled with Marc's losses were enough to call the game.
Despite the dice rolling of doom, it was an enjoyable game. Many thanks to Pat L for hosting (Did I mention there was a cheese board? This is high class gaming for sure) and thanks as always to George for bringing his toys for us to play with.
*I normally don't blame the dice in place of my tactical errors but this time, I don't think I killed a single Chinese element even with double overlaps or hard flanks.