This past weekend WR travelled south for David K’s monthly Long Beach 28mm Clash of Empires game. The scenario this month was the Batavian Revolt of 70 A.D. Roman Early Imperial army under Quintus Petillius Cerialis vs. the revolting Batavian tribes and some romanized auxiliary defectors under Gaius Julis Civilis.
OOB game set up: Roman line (l to r) had elite cavalry, cohort cavalry, allied veteran WB, a Numeri unit, three veteran legionaries with Consul Quintus, 2 regular legionaries and then the untrained legionaries. Finishing the Roman right was deployed the allied Germanic cavalry and a small unit of Numidians. Some skirmishers before the legionaries and Numeri plus the scorpio bolt thrower between the regular legionaries.
The Batavi line (l to r) had auxiliary cavalry (defectors), the two Auxiliary infantry (defectors again), a group of warbands in right center extending out to right with Gaius, another auxiliary cavalry (defectors) and on the far right the light Germanic cavalry. Various skirmishers along the front lines. YouTube video on starting dispositions at: Link
Terrain notes: Woods and central hill are rough terrain. The hill blocked LOS till the unit was more than half way across the feature. 16’x6′ table is otherwise open fields with scattered ground shrubs. Romans move first after winning the dice off.
Turn I : Cunning Batavi hid their massive warband (WB) bodies behind the central hill. The roman scorpio unit must have caused great fear in their ranks (hold the laughter please). Opening movements on both sides had the armies approaching each other with cavalry seeking out their cavalry opponents. Consul Quintus rode over towards the left flank for a better view of the onrushing Batavi.
Turn II : More approach marching, some light skirmish fire between the skirmishers. Left flank cavalry about to charge home at top left of photo.
Turn III : Roman cohort cavalry with Tribune leading charges home on the auxiliary defectors. Breaking, the auxiliary cavalry flee towards their rear past the advancing warbands with Roman cohort cavalry in hot pursuit (on nags).
Across the table the armies continue to advance with the Batavi surging up the backside of the central hill….that “woodmen skill” comes in handy crossing the rough ground.
Turn IV : Chasing the fleeing auxiliary cavalry on the left, the elite Roman cavalry is charged by the hapless Germanic light cavalry. They hold on for turn four but Romans destroyed them on turn five. Battle is looking good for the Roman left so far except that the fleeing auxiliary rallied on their last chance. YouTube summary commentary for turns I-IV at: Link
Turn V : Romans stand before the lower slope of the central hill….awaiting the Batavi. The Roman right cohorts continue their advance while the inactive right flank cavalry watch the retiring auxiliary cavalry defectors. One lucky legion cohort had a brief warm up exercise on some stupid Batavi skirmishers
Turn VI : While the Roman right flank wheels into position, the Roman left flank cavalry is lining up again on the auxiliary defectors while being pincushioned by the nearby archers. Around the central hill little movement as both armies prepare for the big turn charge.
As the Roman slinger retire, the bold Batavi advance across the hill till just out of charge range. Being veteran heavy armor romans….they have a limited charge range up the hill. Cunning Batavi again…..as Quintus watches.
Turn VII : Roman disaster! While watching the advance of the Batavi across the hill, Consul Quintus rode to his allied Numeri and veteran warband left flank. the Batavi….sensing a “softer target” charged their warbands into the fray. Crash……Roman allied tribesmen are bowed over in numbers as the Batavi hack their way in. Too much…even with two excellent low morale rolls from Consul Quintus, the Roman left is totally crushed leaving Quintus in the middle of a serious bloodletting.
Roman disaster as pictured in the Roman Times below…..front page news before the gladiator sports page.
YouTube commentary summary covering turns V-XI at: Link
Turn VIII : The left flank cavalry fight finally ends with the auxiliary defectors fleeing again off the table, chased by the remains of the Roman cavalry. In the center the victorious Batavi warbands attempt to wheel into the exposed Roman flank as Roman drilled cohorts attempt to plug the open flank.
Turns IX and X : Little other action across the battle as both side readjust their positions with the battle lines. The fleet-footed Batavi atop the hill easily avoid the veteran heavy Roman legionaries charging up the hill slope.
Turns XI & XII : Roman generals in discusion…..what to do? Massed Batavi warbands hold the central hill and left flank legionaries in position. Maybe the Batavi left is weak….Tribune David says….attack! He launches the Roman right flank cohorts forward as Quintus completes the repositioning of the Roman legionary left.
Turn XIII : Tribune David’s cohorts find their opponents….the defector auxiliary. Lead by Consul Quintus himself, roman scutum and gladius finish the job quickly as the auxiliary flee the enraged legionaries.
Turn XIV : Another Roman disaster….what is up with the legionaries today? Germanic tribesmen led by Gaius crush another legionary cohort in pursuit. More Roman Times front page news….. as Batavi warbands hold the central hill position.
Turn XV : We left the legionaries with Consul Quintus breaking the auxiliary…wheeling the cohort, Quintus is faced by another Batavi warband charge. Hoping for another Roman “disaster”, the Batavi warband charges home. But these Romans know their business, having crushed the auxiliary just the turn before. Scutum and gladius ready, the legionaries tear into the surprised tribesmen. Rumor has it that Quintus and Gaius faced each other….but the fight was lost in the melee. Suddenly, the cry that Gaius had fallen sounds from the throats of the Batavi…..
The Batavi army reacts to the loss of their leader, several warbands decamp from the field and start retiring. Once started, the ability to rally is hard for these tribesmen. Quintus and his legionary cohort are surrounded by fleeing warbands.
YouTube coverage for turns XII-XVI; Link
Turn XVI : End of game as the Batavi stream off the table. The much reduced Roman cavalry arrive in the rear to chase tribesmen. The final warband is cornered and soon crushed at the base of the central hill.
Another great game from the hands of David. Handshakes for all….David, Tim, Doug as the Long Beach COE gamers travel home till next month. Miniatures and terrain from the collection of David. If interested in 28mm Clash of Empires, join us in Long Beach CA for a game. Contract information found at “About the Wargamerabbit” blog site.
Cheers from the warren…….WR