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Xenophon's Ghost covers military history and wargaming from the ancient period to modern times.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Latest DBA test run

We finally moved into our condo and received a small shipment of our belongings.  Typhoon Bolaven hit Seoul, so I came home from work early and managed to play a game of DBA.  A new version of DBA 3.0 was posted in early August, so I tested it out solo. Lacking my game board, I marked off a 32 inch square on our dining table.  This is the first time I have played on a larger field, and the extra space was noticeable.

The Kappadokians fought with Knights as the mounted choice because of their strength against warbands.  The Army list provides a choice between Cavalry or Knights.  I also deployed one spear element.  The latest version of DBA includes two foot classes: fast and solid.  I played the Kappadokian auxilia as fast.

On the other side of the field were Galatians with a Lt Chariot General.  I played the war bands as solid foot.  It will be interesting to see how the final Army lists represent Galatian warbands.

The Kappadokians defended.  My basic strategy for the Kaps was to hold a line along the bad going terrain as long as possible and use the Knights to take out warband elements.


For the Galatians, I planned to attack the Knights with Cavalry and push the Warbands into rough going, aiming to destroy the auxilia units.

The Kappadokian Knights tried to maneuver to the right flank to engage the warband elements, while Galatian cavalry tried to check them.

For several turns, the Galatians rolled low PIPs, so the Knights were eventually able to engage thanks to a flanking move by the Kappadokian Light Horse.

I won't begin a rant on the terse wording of the DBA rules, but I am not entirely sure that I moved the LH elements correctly on this flanking move.  I have included a play-by-play of the move to contact the Galatian LCh General.

I moved the LH forward, and then flanked the Gen with the right element.  On further review, I think the Gen should have turned to face the first LH that made contact, and the second LH move to flank appears legal.   Welcome feedback.

The combat resulted in the LH recoiling.  Eventually, the General destroyed one LH element.  However, Kappadokian Auxilia flanked a Galatian cavalry element and destroyed it.  The remaining Galatian Cavalry and Auxila fought several more rounds of combat that resulted in tied rolls, so there were no effects on either force.  I was surprised at the resilience of auxilia in the current rules version.

The Galatian warbands on the Kappadokians left flank engaged Psiloi in the woods, but two rounds of combat only resulted in the Psiloi recoiling. 

 This final photo depicts the situation right before the Kappadokians Knights, who had finally moved to contact with the Warbands, finished them off, killing three Warband elements in a row.

It was good to play again, although playing a new rules version solo isn't the most exciting or fastest method.  It did give me a chance to learn the new differences, and I don't really have much criticism.  Of course, several of the new features in DBA 3.0 didn't come into play given the element types in the two armies.  The movement rates allowed for fast movement to contact, but the combat factors (and the dice rolls) resulted in six solid rounds of combat.  It wasn't over quickly until the Knights hit the Warbands and got lucky with the dice.

I was introduced to another DBA gamer here in Seoul via the Yahoo list, so we plan to meet in September.