Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Skirmish at Segikahara - Test of Honour AAR

Bill wanted a large multiplayer battle to break up the two-player games we've been playing in the campaign so far. I offered up a scenario based on the opening of the Battle of Sekigahara.

In the prelude to the historical battle, a thick fog covered the fields of Sekigahara. Forces from both the Eastern and Western armies stumbled into each other and engaged as the fog lifted. 

This scenario was designed somewhat based on this opening encounter. The Loyalist and the Rebels played as two combined sides with the following deployment and scenario rules:
  • The battlefield is a 6'x4' table split into 6 2'x2' areas, labeled 1-6
  • Each warband is divided into two equal (or as close to equal) groups of bases
  • Players then roll a D6 to determine which square they deploy in. A second D6 roll then determines where in that square they will deploy:
    • 1-4 - 3" away from the labeled side
    • 5 - In the center of the square (if an enemy group is already deployed there, then place your units 1" away)
    • 6 - Player may chose anywhere to deploy, at least 3" from the edge of a square
  • Once both sides have deployed all their units, the game begins. 
    • The first turn is played in Darkness according to the Darkness and Deceit rules, due to a thick fog. 
    • All units are considered Unaware according to the Darkness and Deceit rules. They may test to become aware as normally described in the Darkness and Deceit rules, but only move D6" for their random movement. 
    • The fog lifts at the end of the first turn. Units are no longer affected by Darkness, and they are no longer Unaware. 
  • At the end of Turn Five, whoever controlled the central building (by having more bases touching/on it) would win the scenario.
The idea was to create a battle that's a little more interesting than your standard battleline scenario, where both sides will have to rally their troops and attempt to seize a central point while also holding back the enemy.

By pure chance, the two side actually ended up largely grouped together by alliance. Most of Kai, Sam, and Jolene's forces (the loyalists supporting the Emperor) ended up in the bottle left of the table, while Bill, Harley, and my forces (the rebels, fighting for the Shogun) ended up in the top right. A few members of either side were scattered about, blocked from their allies.

For the first turn, both sides mostly moved randomly around, only able to move a few inches in any directions. One of Sam's ashigaru units managed to spot and charge Harley's ronin, wounding the group.

As the first turn ended, the thick fog quickly burned away, revealing a battlefield littered with scattered soldiers. The samurai quickly rallied their units and began moving towards the center, hoping to use the building as a staging point to secure the area.

Most of the fighting in this game took place in the bottom left of the table, as Bill's ninja were hunted down by Kai's and Sam's combined forces. Meanwhile, Jolene skirmished with Harley and me in the top right.

While this was going on, Harley, Bill and I managed to get our hero characters (a ronin, ninja, and samurai, respectively) onto the building, hoping we could hold on for the rest of the game.

The fighting continued into the fourth turn. Bill's ninja were wiped out, and Harley's ronin sallied out from the protection of the building to get not one, but two critical hits, wiping out a spearmen group.

Kai did managed to get a non-hero samurai onto the building, but he was quickly set upon by the leaders of the rebel warbands. While the loyalist samurai wasn't killed by the battle's end, he was gravely injured, suffering wounds to his leg and head.

We decided to call the game at the end of turn four, instead of playing out the fifth turn. Bill's ninja had delayed Kai's and Sam's forces long enough that they wouldn't be able to reach the building in time to contest it, and Jolene's warband was shifting to evade around the shogunate forces' commoner units.

With the loyalists falling back, the rebels declared victory for the Shogun. 

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