Thursday, February 11, 2016

Romans vs Dacians

Yesterday Richard and I tried our hand at a game of Impetus, using his extensive collection of figures to field 580 points of Romans versus the same value of Dacians.  There were a few Romans and a lot of Dacians.

The Dacian army.  I had three commands.  The cavalry I put on my open left flank.  For the other two commands that would be coming in through the wooded hills I was leading with skirmishers and falxmen followed by the large unit warbands (so large we had to mix in other figures).

The Romans.  The Scorpio models are just to represent that the legionary unit has that capability - great value for only 15 points for the whole army.

The view from the Roman lines.  The coins are used as an aid to remember which commands have moved, there was no money involved.

The Dacians get ready to advance.  They are 60U apart and move at 8U per turn.  The Scorpios have a range of 30U.

A good stock of dice can be seen on the Roman right.  Although Impetus is not overly dice heavy, it does pay to be able to roll sixes.  I seem to have no trouble rolling them for Cohesion Tests - doh!

In my most recent Impetus game, with 1/72nd scale figures, U was one inch.  With 15mm U is one centimetre.  I was concerned this would be a bit fine, but it wasn't really an issue.

The only exciting things to happen by the end of the first turn was one of the Roman Generals rolling a double one and being down graded to poor.  I must have laughed.

As on the next turn my CinC lost his charisma.

I wanted my screen of falxmen and skirmishers to get ahead of my main body and was conscious this would take careful planning.

Scorpios destroy a unit (remember my boast about being able to roll a six?).  The Scorpio fires with four dice (2 + 2 at long range).  A good chance to get a hit and then if you roll a six for a VBU=3 unit it's all over.

On my right the Scorpios start to pick off falxmen.  We were using the FoG counters to denote disorder and using dice to keep track of loss to VBU.  Using dice is risky as they were frequently picked up to be rolled in the excitement of combat.

My left flank is starting to move and I'm pleased that it has halted the Roman's advance.  I would like to do double moves but my poor command structure makes this risky, even with the B class cavalry.

By the end of Turn 3 my leading troops are just about ready to burst out of the woods.

Losses due to Scorpio fire start to mount.  My archers (T) also got misaligned and I had to muck about to keep them out of the difficult terrain.

End of Turn 4 and it is slow work on the left, but at least my skirmisher screen seems to be working.

The Romans react to the Dacians coming out of the woods.  The Dacians certainly look like an overwhelming force.  We shall see if this is the case.

On the right one unit of falxmen has been wiped out by the Scorpios and the Roman skirmishers are also putting up a fight.

Turn 5 and results have been mixed.  We have both lost one unit in the centre.

On my right... Well, at least with the Legions now having been in combat they no longer get their Scorpio missile fire.

My left is making progress, but will they be able to achieve anything?

The "big picture" view end Turn 6.  Around this time the previously fair Dacian right wing commander was found to be poor.  Maybe that explains why this command is not in action.

Things are looking bad for the Roman centre.

Turn 7 and I'm beginning to understand how the Large Units work.  The CinC has died, but it was a noble death.

The right flanks is in and things are looking good...

And on the left we are round the flank although the Scorpios have knocked out two units.

Turn 8 and the left flank attack hasn't achieved much, although it did its purpose in holding off this Roman command.

In the centre I just might have won.  The Roman general has gone.

Disaster strikes my right.  The general is killed and his whole command routs.  Ouch!

Total time played was eight hours, but that included an hour and a half for set up and a short break for lunch, so there was about six hours of actual play.  There were eight turns and a definite result with nearly all troops actively engaged.

Everything worked well.  The Scorpios seem good value for money.  They are just as effective firing on skirmishers as they are firing through a skirmisher screen and you are in their arc for a good while.

Clearly I'm still learning the rules, but apart from an initial mix up with large units (I was counting loss of VBU to the rear unit off the front units VBU in melee and Impetus bonus) the only other challenge was sorting out a number of main/supporting unit match ups in the various combats we had and that was straightforward enough.

I'm looking forward to playing more Impetus and must see what I can field using my 15mm figures.

I note the recent CANCON competition was 550 point armies in three hour games.  I would certainly need to use movement trays to speed things up.


  1. Great looking game with hordes of Dacians! A close run thing too. You came close didn't you. Seems that your dice rolling continued over from the weekend. I'm starting to believe that it's not as good as I had previously experienced; random like everyone else even...!!

    1. Thanks. Yes, 15mm can be impressive when you can field the figures. As to my dice rolling...

      Nonsense! Turns out I was robbed of victory by my own ruling on Scorpios. They get two dice regardless. We had them firing with up to five dice depending on range and target type.

  2. Always an enjoyable to see a large Dacian army in action! Interesting from what your saying the Scorpians are an attachment not a separate unit.

    1. Thanks. Playing with masses of figures is always a pleasure.

      The embedded Scorpios came in with the errata. They fire with two dice so not as deadly as they were in our game, but still great to have if you are on the defensive.