My buddy, Steve, was kind enough to be a guinea pig, I mean, play-tester, given that I haven't played the game myself for probably a good 4 years. And I haven't test-played some of the latest tweaks. Regardless, I had a lot of fun putting the game through its paces. Maybe not so much for Steve, who was coming into it totally blind. That was a good lesson for me, as a demonstrator, to remember to describe some of the assumed and expected behaviors of the units, to help ground a person who has never played the game.
We had a couple of false starts, as I discovered that I needed to better clarify the scenario and the unit roles/behaviors. But here is the first laydown, to show the armies and describe the scenario.
Steve's forces are on top. He brought his beautifully painted SAGA Dark Age warriors for the occasion. They are defending their pastureland on the north side of the fence from the raiding orcs and goblins. The orcs need to dismantle one of the wooden sections of the wall and then spend a turn on the north side of the fence to rustle out the cattle.
|Steve's Dark Age warriors, sporting Danish axes, javelins, spears & shiedwall, and war hounds.|
|Geddy, the Schnauzer, looks on unimpressed as the orcs, goblins, and evil Men raise their war-cry.|
Here is the laydown for the third setup. Steve won the command roll to dictate the time and place of battle. He only won by one point, but that was enough to shift the wooden sections of the wall to one end of the field. Both forces use the setup to protect one flank of their Close Formations.
Both sides use the forests for cover as they advance to the fence.
Rockjaw, the Orc leader, doesn't like the pressure being set up at the fence. He decides to use his Loose Formation of Orc Brutes to protect the flank of the Spearmen and take the fight directly to the Danish Warlord, despite being outnumbered 12 to 8. He hopes he will buy time for the rearguard to isolate the dogs and skirmishers. That will leave an isolated fight between the Close Formation units, which is still a risk, since the Haradrim are outnumbered 16 to 12. Luckily, the Goblin archers had a chance to weaken the shieldwall.
The Warlord units annihilate each other!
The war hounds and the goblin archers annihilate each other!
The spear units charge head-on.
The Spear units annihilate each other!
That leaves the Orc Brutes versus the Danish javelineers. The Brutes should win this one.
Guess what happens.
The units annihilate each other!