Sunday, April 5, 2015

To The Strongest!

We went over to Merseyside to visit my Mum in hospital over the start of the long Easter weekend.  I took along a box of 6mm ancients so that Jamie and I could try out the To The Strongest! while we were there.

TTS is a set of fast-playing ancient wargaming rules designed and published by my old mate Simon Miller (a skilled painter and a fellow Glory Geek).  The rules are played with neither tape measures nor dice, using a square grid to regulate movement and playing cards or counters to handle command control and combat resolution.

I took along an old, green-eyed bed-sheet to form the battlefield, to which I applied CD-marker spots to define the grid system.

The dark spots mark corners on the 75mm grid I used with
6mm figures on 60mm-wide element bases.
My favourite bit of the ancients period is the end of the Roman Empire and the start of the Dark Ages.  For this first battle I used a force of Late Romans (all Baccus miniatures) and Jamie had a sort-of-generic-Goth-based force with javelin armed cavalry and some (perhaps Frankish) allies on foot.

The two armies met on a completely featureless battlefield.  Jamie deployed in a symmetrical formation with a central large unit of warriors flanked on both sides by javelin-armed cavalry.  A couple of light infantry bowmen units were in among the cavalry.  

The Goth-Frank alliance arrayed for battle.
I had a strong centre of four legionarii cohorts and a unit of Auxilia Palatina, but relatively weak flanks; one unit of javelin-armed cavalry on the left and two of light cavalry on the right.


As we were trying the rules for the first time, we kept things pretty simple with one command each.  Jamie has an attached general (who stays with a particular unit throughout the game) whilst my General was detached and free to move about.  That's him on the larger round base above, and again below:


The smaller round base shows the presence of a Hero.  We each had one of these.  They can be sacrificed by the owning player to gain a second attempt at a failed close combat "to hit" check.   All of the detached figures in this game came from Baccus's Viking Personalities set.

If victory is to the strongest then Jamie was definitely the strongest on the day.  He took advantage of his superiority in cavalry to drive off my Roman horse.

Irregular Miniatures cavalry, originally painted as Rohirrim
by Alan Slater.  The smaller counters are missile ammunition, whilst
the stack of two larger counters show that this unit has already
activated twice.  

Gothic horse threaten disordered Auxilia Palatina.

Having driven off my right flank light cavalry, Jamie's big Frankish warband was able to hit my legionary line in the flank with predictably fatal results.


Although my left flank cavalry held their own...


... the result wasn't in doubt and the Franks rolled up the Romans' main line to gain a clear victory.

I really like these rules.  We were both very impressed by how quickly they played.  I can see myself very quickly creating a proper gridded battlefield for the game and I suspect future purchases from Mr Berry at Baccus will be called for.

At £9.99 for the full colour PDF To The Strongest! is a set of rules that's well worth purchasing.  Check out Simon's webstore.

3 comments:

Simon Miller said...

Looks great Richard, and thanks for posting the link! I'm glad you both had fun- I've tried not to make the rules too serious. Best, Simon

Richard Phillips said...

I shall be ordering a copy later with a pack of chits to go with them.
Like the idea of the grid system and fancy painting something different from modern microarmour.
Cheers
Richard P

Phil said...

Beautiful units in this report!