I met up with my buddies Brent and Jack for a game of SAGA over breakfast. They ran the Irish against my new Anglo Danish warband in the Clash of the Warlords
scenario. This is a straightforward match where killing the enemy warlord wins you the game. Barring that, the game ends after 6 turns and the two sides count casualties to determine a winner. Fast and furious, just the way we like it.
Brent won the setup and made sure the Irish had loads of terrain to hide in & shoot out of. To avoid the Irish ability "Sons of Daina," where rough terrain come alive with missile fire, I squeezed my troops into the open ground. It almost looks like they're forming square. There was hardly room enough to swing a Danish axe!
The Irish opened with a double move into the woods with the wolfhounds, hearthguard, 2 Irish heroes and the warlord. Two flavors of breakfast whiskey appeared and soon, everything seemed a bit funnier. One of the great things about SAGA is you can tip a bit and still play. I don't normally drink whiskey, or this early, but it was the weekend and I was playing a new warband. Reason enough to celebrate!
The first 4 turns of the game were slow played by both sides. The Irish wouldn't come out of the woods or move into charge range. I wouldn't move within 4" of the woods. I used the Danish ability Trapped
to stack fatigue on 3 Irish units a turn every time I could. With no obvious target, I waited for an opportunity.
Then Brent and Jack had a stroke of luck. Rolling well, they turned 6 SAGA dice into 8 on their battleboard and maxed out their 3 shooting abilities. They stacked all 3 of the abilities on a unit of Irish hearthguard, who wiped out my hearthguard in single volley despite my Shieldwall defensive ability. This was stunning blow and one I calculated would cost me the game. I hit back in my turn but I was way behind with only 2 turns to pull a rabbit out of an Irish hat. Smelling blood, the Irish went all in on their next turn, destroying a unit of warriors and shredding my levy slingers. The loss of units reduced my SAGA dice from 6 to 4.
Insult to injury, they unleashed the Irish wolfhounds as well! The dogs were the only combat I won in the turn. Look closely at the shot below to spot a narrow path to victory for the Danes. Deep in the woods stands the Irish warlord and his champion.
|I can see your warlord from here! |
Barring my way were wolfhounds and a champion. To have a chance, I needed to throw the equivalent of consecutive 6s to turn my 4 SAGA dice into more dice for activation and abilities. My rolling was red hot and I turned 4 dice into 8. I went from "I don't have a prayer" to "I can do this!" After loading up my battleboard, I sent my warriors in. They made it through the wolfhounds, through the hero and to the warlord. They lost and bounced back exhausted. My hearth guard followed in their wake and took the Irish warlord down, earning my very first win against the Irish. And to think, I almost conceded the game!
|Never did get a shot of me from the front, you idiot!|
My gaming opportunities increased greatly after my son went off to college. SAGA, Maurice, Dux Britanniarum, Field of Glory and even Lord of the Rings have all been on the menu of late. As we head into the Thanksgiving holiday here in the US, I have many things to be thankful for. One is that I get to see and participate in the Golden Age of Gaming. These are the days, my friend!