Saturday, 6 December 2014

Song of Drums & Tomahawks game 2 British militia vs Braves

Song of Drums and Tomahawks game 2.

Indians vs British.

Should we say Native Americans? The rules say Indians and we use the same with no racial slur intended.

We are learning the rules. There is a bonus for shooting from ambush, it was missed from the cheat sheet. Some say that games like this are “generic”. Well that's true with respect to the core rules. We play Flying Lead and its offshoot Flashing Blades. The former can be used for this period, the latter (being a pirate-set) is firmly entrenched in this time frame. Yet each is subtly different. SODT has a different group activation system. Doesn't sound much, but it gives a different flavour to the game. Troops move faster, in larger numbers and in set formations. We found that our normal 2ft table needed to expand to 3ft. The rally back options (we had used in in the trial Song of Spear and Shield) is a very useful device for regular troops to extract themselves from danger.

The Game

Tony wanted to use tomahawks, he took an Indian force composed of half archers, half muskets plus a warchief. I had a mixed force, a scout section comprised of a traditional Indian brave, an Indian archer, 3 British Rangers led by a British sergeant. An officer led 6 militia.

The terrain is a mix of old and new all bar the new swampland under the heading “can do better”.
 The hills are part of my King Kong range. Looks good, but not appropriate. The wood bases are fine, but trees are placed, not individually positioned.

Tony has a good grasp of tactics. In a skirmish game you have to play what your characters can see , not what you know. With reference to the group activation rules I formed my ranger force into a skirmish line in front of a column of militia. Tony started in Indian file. Winning the initiative he deliberately showed his archers moving to my right, “dropping off” his other braves behind some woods whilst heading for the high ground.

I moved my skirmish line to the right, the Brave climbing the hill to my flank. Tony kept moving back and sent 2of his archers up the rock overlooking the trail. The other two went after my mountaineer. One got a push back from a shot, so plummeted. He was avenged by his mate.

The musket armed braves always managed to get 1 activation, so crept through the woods like vampires at a garlic festival. The warchief, getting a good score, did an attack on the nearest ranger, springing out of the woods to dash him down. He was driven back by a shot before he could scalp, and this set the trend-. The sergeant waded in, only to be dispatched. This leads to a general falling back of the rangers. One flees, only to be hurried on by a shot from the chief. The warchief was then shot at 4 times by my archer, each time pushed back from the corpses. A ranger shoots the warchief, misses, then grapples with him. Every time the chief knocks him down, he springs back up-.

Meanstwhile, a miss at near point blank warns the militia of the presence of the braves in the woods to their flank. They turn. The officer is shot. They run, all bar one who stands over his officer and gives a good account of himself, holding up 3 braves and saving the lives of several of his friends.

With both leaders dead, I had no control. With the chief engaged in fisticuffs neither had Tony. Everything was down to individual actions. My force simply melted away off the table.
A positive win for Tony's braves through superior tactics.