During the current difficulties, I have been keeping in touch with the hobby by playing games remotely. Happily, years of practice left us ready for this. Yesterday, my sons had their turn, as I hosted a game for the two of them, separately remote. Since younger son William acquired DBA 3.0 fall, we have had a resurgence of interest in the game, and older son Norman and I (well, mostly Norman) have been at work reshaping and extending an earlier 1/72 Bronze Age project to cover more of the possible armies of the 13th century BCE. For yesterday’s game, we pitted the ancient Libyans (DBA Army I/7b) against the New Kingdom Egyptians (I/22b).
I set up the iPad on a tripod, having recently acquired a tripod mount for it, and laid out the reversible 3x3 ground cloth on the desert side.
Norman elected to command the Libyans, and William was therefore cast as the Egyptians.
We had to use a spare Egyptian chariot on a sabot base in lieue of the as-yet-unbuilt Libyan chariot, and the camps were also improvised. Of the choices that we could make, Norman elected to take an element of Sea Peoples “blades” rather than a second chariot, and William elected to deploy his Sherden guards as “solid” (rather than “fast”) blades.
The terrain system gave us a waterway along one edge (as the Egyptians, a “littoral” culture, were defending). William chose to use his amphibious capability to land two elements, some Nubian skirmishers and a renegade Libyan warband, behind the Libyan line in a bid to capture the enemy camp.
The battle then commenced. William’s amphibious force won an early advantage by destroying two of Norman’s right flank skirmishers, but faltered in their attack on the camp. After a single attempt, the situation in the main battle demanded all of his attention and command pips.
There was a good deal of pushing and shoving along the left end of the Libyan line (the Egyptian right), and eventually Norman’s Libyan “warbands” came screaming down off the hill in a bid to destroy the Egyptian infantry (against which they had a quick kill capability). He was in the unenviable position of attempting to hold off chariots with skirmishers while hoping for some luck with the warbands, and the dice were not with him. A couple of turns into the main fight, William finally overcame his cold dice situation, and killed two elements out on his right flank for the win.
The video quality was still a little underwhelming, so we supplemented it by taking and texting pictures of the situations on demand. As a result, the game took rather longer than it would have face to face. However, if there’s one thing that most of us have these days, it’s time on the weekends. With side discussion, set up, and the like, we were at it for about two hours. We all agreed that we need to gain a little more familiarity with the rules, as extensive play with the first edition of Hordes of the Things was tripping us up fairly regularly.
Next time, perhaps we shall dig out the 2nd Punic War figures; they haven’t seen a battle in several years...