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London, United Kingdom
A mythical beast - a female wargamer! I got back into wargaming in the summer of 2011 after a very, very long break. My current interests are Ancients, ACW, 30YW and SciFi gaming.

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

"Derby" AAR 3: A Dust Up in the Delta

Those of you have been paying attention will have worked out that this was my least enjoyable game of the tournament.

I was facing an Old Kingdom Egyptian army - lots and lots of shooty medium foot. Rich's army was composed as follows:

1 x Inspired Commander, 3 x Troop Commander
2 x 8 Nubian Archers (MF, Superior, Undrilled, Unprotected, Bow)
6 x 6 Archers (MF, Average, Drilled, Unprotected, Bow)
3 x 8 Archers (MF, Average, Drilled, Unprotected, Bow)
1 x 8 Conscript Spear (MF, Poor, Undrilled, Protected, Light Spear)
1 x 6 Bedouin Slingers (LF, Average, Undrilled, Unprotected, Sling)
1 x 6 "Elite" Close Fighters (HF, Superior, Drilled, Protected, Heavy Weapon)
2 x 6 Close Fighters (MF, Average, Drilled, Protected, Swordsmen)

I've just run this list through the army generator spreadsheet, and found it comes out as 833 points. I've double-checked against my photos and the list above is correct. My suspicion is that Rich may have submitted the list with just 2 Troop Commanders and accidentally (*cough*) deployed 3 during the games.

Rich won initiative and selected Developed terrain. I made a bit of a screw-up here - I wasn't really awake and forgot that I could have selected 2 "open" pieces which might have prevented some of his terrain falling where it did. Unfortunately for me, most of it fell into his half of the table.

Given that he was able to deploy his archers almost wall-to-wall across the table, I would have to commit some troops to a delaying action on one wing to prevent him from enveloping my army, whilst committing the rest of my army to advancing on one wing and hope that they didn't get shot up too badly on the way in. Again, this was where not being fully awake didn't help as I would need to waste some time repositioning my main line on the way in. Stupidly, I'd deployed my skirmishers over towards my right.so they wouldn't be able to provide much of a screen for my main thrust.

My deployment - superior troops in the centre of the main line.

Egyptian right wing

Egyptian centre-right

Egyptian centre - the 2 units to the side of the village are the Nubians

Egyptian left wing

I definitely committed too many units for the right wing delaying action....

....and stupidly kept advancing with them

The main thrust crawling gradually toward the Egyptian right wing and centre-right. If I could survive the shooting going in, the Egyptians would be mincemeat at impact and in the melee phases.

Over on my right wing, the Egyptians are concentrating their shooting on just a few units.

My superior troops massing to take on the Egyptian centre-right. Rich seemed to have 3 different-coloured sets of home made measuring sticks - red, green and yellow. I suspect that one was with short inches, one with normal inches and one with long inches, to be used according to which would benefit him most at the time.

If only I had hung back on my right wing, and not closed in....

Almost there! Notice the two bases on the end of Rich's right-most archers, slightly ahead of the rest. In my previous move I'd moved exactly 4" forward which put me in base contact with them when they should have been just short. Rich threw a tantrum, so I moved them back to just outside contact. From the pics it is now clear that those 2 bases must have got knocked forward slightly, perhaps when he was checking ranges for shooting. He threw a couple more tantrums during that turn and the one after.

It seems I stopped taking pics at this point. Over on my right wing, one of my blocking units had been broken from shooting; one had charged in against the Nubians in the field and were broken by his close fighters flank charging them (I can't find pics that show it clearly, but I suspect it wasn't a valid flank charge - I don't think he had a base which was fully behind my front but can't be entirely certain. However, at that point I'd lost the will to live from all the tantrums and let it go); another unit had been shot to fragmented and my chariots had lost 2 bases to shooting.

Unfortunately we ran out of time just before my turn. If we had been able to play on, my left wing was about to charge in and destroy his right and centre, which would probably have won me the game. I suspect that all the tantrums were to deliberately waste time to prevent me getting onto that last turn.

Lessons Learned

1. Avoid playing against him again if I can.
2. Double check the terrain options - if I'd remembered the open terrain pieces, I might have blocked some of his pieces from going down.
3. I should have deployed more to the left of the table, and should have had my skirmishers over to that side
4. A blocking force is just that. It doesn't need to be as big as I made it and it doesn't advance into combat until it has to.
5. Against shooty armies, having an IC would be really helpful.

Edit to add:

As you will know from my previous AARs, I really don't mind losing (even when it's a 25-0 wipeout). What I do dislike is losing to someone who appears to have cheated and thrown tantrums near the end to waste time in order to prevent me getting into contact and possibly winning.


  1. Well done for naming and shaming.

    We should all start taking pictures of our opponents before tournament games and tell them it's for the internet!

  2. Oh dear, that sounds like the very worst sort of game! What a shame. Reminds me why I don't like measurement.

  3. Nice AAR. I really enjoyed reading it. Maybe I can persuade my club mates to give Fields of Glory a try.

  4. The downside to tournaments is you, very occasionally, come up against a wanker like that! The best thing to do is to keep your chin up, remind yourself that most gamers are decent folk and, lastly, talk smack about him on the internet!

    Great pics and reports, really enjoyed them all!

  5. What a fecking tosser, you did well Tamsin not to feck his shit up!

  6. Imagine the tantrum he's throwing if he's reading this right now.....

  7. Sounds to me as though sportsmanship was somewhat lacking on the Egyptian side.

    But we have to endure people like this from time to time; all we can do is rest confident in the knowledge that we ourselves have done the right thing.

    Although it is scant consolation when (and let's not mince words here) A CHEATIN' FRIGGIN' BASTARD manages to notch up a win against the people who adhere to the letter and the spirit of the rules!

    Do the organisers ask to see army lists ahead of time? I feel that a few invigilators or a formal protest system would have cooked your opponent's goose rather effectively.

  8. I have played against such 'competitive' players in competition games too.

    I no longer play in competitions due to this. Gaming is meant to be fun!

    Well done on not actually inflicting harm on him!!! You won!

  9. OOps, I imagine this one has been eagerly waited for as it is (for us) some what fun to read but must have been a real pain to play against.

    Just before the end of the game you should have picked up his sticks and checked your theory. If you was right I think Instant Win!!!


  10. Hi Tamsin,
    thanks for the report .
    the Nubians of the Egyptian list must have been " unprotected" not "protected".
    the " elite" close fighters must have been Heavy foot.
    on the 9th pic the Bg of egyptian in 5+1 is partlyjust before the front of the shooters and on the 10th pic they are in 2x3 behind the front of the shooters?????
    if they contracted even twice time they have been unable to recoil and shift behind like they are on the 10th pic!!!!
    sadly we cannot see the pics of the flank charge, but if they were in the position I can see on the 11th pic I don't understand how he could manage a legal flank charge to protect his bowmen.

    the best reply I found agaisnt tantrum is " STOP!", it doesn't solve all the problems but sometimes it works not too bad.

    if you don't want to meet him next time, I'll be happy to play him if I'm here, it's a Customer like those I like to play. ;-)
    " is he playing in imperial or metric ??? ;-)"
    using a wrong list with more points seems to be " cheating " not a " misunderstanding"in my point of view .
    fortunely he is a very rare case and I hope he will choose another ruleset quickly and let us in good company;-)

    Best regards

    thefrenchjester " Punk not dead!!"

  11. Thanks all. This was certainly the least pleasant game of the tournament.

    @ Ev - lists are submitted for checking 2 weeks before the tournament, but it's not really possible for the umpire (particularly if they are also playing) to go round and check that all 36 players are using what they said they would be on their submitted list. Fortunately most people are honest, but it would be quite easy to slip in extra units or generals on the day (provided you aren't likely to face the umpire).
    On the day I didn't have time to do a points check and had no reason to suspect that he'd gone over.

    @ Ian - just imagine the tantrum he'd have thrown if I'd done that! Loki can vouch for the fact that he was being quite obnoxious - he "wisely" decided to walk away rather than come over for a chat with me.

    @ thefrenchjester - quite right about the Nubians and the Elite Close Fighters, I'll update the list accordingly (they are correct on the spreadsheet I did to check the points).
    The dubious flank charge wasn't by those archers, but by the close fighters into the right flank of my unit in the field which was fighting the Nubians. The "flank" charging unit is in column in pic 11. By the time they charged, they had come forward a bit.
    The archers that went from 5+1 to 3 x 2 ended up behind the other unit because the other unit advanced slightly (and shifted just enough to avoid the 5+1/2x3 before their contraction).

  12. Well done. Everyone has already said everything of import. So just "Well done"

  13. Clint says it all really... well done, and also for not jamming your index finger in his left eye.... You've also just described the very reason I will never, ever, ever, play competitive wargames....!

  14. Sounds like a real ass hat! Naming and shaming. Hopefully word gets out that this guy is a douchebag and he is discouraged from playing anyone.
    Tatrums...dear oh dear.

  15. What an arehole! Not sure if I could have kept my cool playing someone like that??

  16. Ha ha what an arse! One of your pictures clearly shows different sized inches on the different range sticks. Bring back tar and feathers!

  17. @ Clint - thanks :)

    @ Steve - he's the only opponent I've played against so far who's been like that. The rest have all been either great to play against, otherwise I might have been put off tournaments.

    @ The Kiwi - my club mates have all told me he's an A-hole, the trouble is you can't stop him entering tournaments so someone has to play against him. Either that or refuse to play him, in which case he scores full points for the game (and could potentially win the tournament if everyone did that).

    @ Ray - he's just lucky that I'm a lady :)

    @ David - if you mean the second pic, the longer measures on one are 40mm (base width). He might also have 30mm graduations on some faces. However, why else would someone have 3 different coloured sets of sticks?