COE Etruscan State vs. Early Republican Rome

Late in December 2012 or 400 B.C. local year, the Etruscan state of King Mic met the Early Republican Romans (of Consul Tim) on the field of battle. History will record some notion of a border dispute, a kidnapped-captive lady, some “lost cattle”, or that the Romans were late with their field dispatches, but these armies were spoiling for a fight.

The clouds parted to give a sunny day on the Italian peninsular. The armies had marched into their starting deployments with a line of small hillocks separating the shield pounding infantry. Some scattered grain fields near a ruined temple (to an old relative of Mic?) completed the scene as King Mic joined his bodyguard near the rock of Mic. With a hatred of Rome, a late arriving Samnite force joined the Etruscans on their distant right flank.

Armies deployed for battle separated by the low hills. Etruscan in foreground, Rome in distance.

Armies deployed for battle separated by the low hills. Etruscan in foreground, Rome in distance.

View towards the right Etruscan right and in the distance the Samnite allies.

View towards the right Etruscan right and in the distance the Samnite allies facing the Roman allies.

Turn One…The armies march forward, well sort of, the Romans wheeled right… and after the first movements both cavalry wings of Etruscan citizen cavalry rode forward to engage their opposites. A group of Italian citizen light chariots led by Son of Mic Two trotted forward on the Etruscan right flank.

Armies advance, Italian chariots race forward. Some early Ben Hur types?

Armies advance, Italian chariots race forward. Some early Ben Hur types?

With Turn Two on the royal scribe’s tablets, the armies show themselves in different character…. Proud Etruscans in a solid line of hoplites, Romans showing disdain as they flank march to their right…. securing the grain fields zone since maybe the classical hoplite formations tend to avoid that terrain type. The Roman allies on their left flank hold ground as the Etruscan cavalry, light chariots and Samnites approach.

As Rome goes right... the Samnites close their left flank allies. King Mic's Etruscans keep up the advance in line.

As Rome goes right… the Samnites close their left flank allies. King Mic’s Etruscans keep up the advance in line.

Turn Three. After advancing, the Roman allies charge home to meet the Etruscan chariots and Samnites.

First brawls on Rome's left as chariots and the Samnites crash home

First brawls on Rome’s left as chariots and the Samnites meet the charge of the Roman allies.

Hard fighting…. chariots upended, horse and riders fall. The Samnites find out that the Roman allies include a crack unit of Extraordinarii with HtH4 skills. Still, the Samnites hold on.. (lucky rolls) and fight fiercely.

Opps, these allies of Rome can fight... Extraordinarii Hth4 work on the Samnites.

Opps, these allies of Rome can fight… Extraordinarii Hth4 work on the Samnites.

Turn Four. As Rome marches right, the Etruscans hoplite line passes the rock of Mic.

As the brawls continue on Rome's left, Rome continues its flanking march.

As the brawls continue on Rome’s left, Rome continues its flanking march.

Fighting continuing on the Etruscan right flank. The Etruscan light chariots shatter the Spanish cavalry as the Samnites slowly give ground even after winning one round of combat.

This isn't going well for the Samnites but the Italian light chariots work the Spanish cavalry over.

This isn’t going well for the Samnites but the Italian light chariots work the Spanish cavalry over.

Turn Four. The Samnites break, first unit then the other. One is totally destroyed as the other run for their lives to be rallied and destroyed later. The Etruscan chariots chase down the Spanish cavalry and break into the rear area of the Roman left flank.

Chariots win and crush the Spanish as the Samnites fight the losing battle (lucky dice rolls).

Chariots win and crush the Spanish as the Samnites fight the losing battle (no lucky dice rolls) this time.

Turn Four (b): While the other flank fought their battles, the Etruscan citizen cavalry on their left flank are engaged by their opposite Roman number. Like our other previous Roman cavalry fights…this donkey fight will go for 5 rounds. The temple skirmishers engage the Balearic mercenary slingers with pointed wood sticks (javelins). The leading units of the Roman Hastati (armed with pilum) and Principes (armed with long spear) line can be viewed heading for the temple ruins.

The Etruscan left their heavy Citizen cavalry impact the Roman cavalry as skirmishers dance about.

The Etruscan left their heavy citizen cavalry impact the Roman cavalry as skirmishers dance about.

Turn Five: Etruscan chariots roll forward as the following Etruscan citizen cavalry unit charges the Roman allied Spanish cavalry. Skirmishers charge their opposite number to enlarge the fight.

As the chariot sweep into the rear, the right flank Italian Citizen heavy cavalry charge the other Spanish cavalry.

As the chariot sweep into the rear, the right flank Italian citizen heavy cavalry charge the other Spanish cavalry.

Back on the left…Roman vs. Etruscan citizen cavalry fight goes on…. Mic side wins, Rome side wins, it’s a draw…. sword and donkey show. The Balearic mercenary slingers laugh as they pull their short swords and make quick work of the javelinmen.

All hung up.... it's a Roman cavalry fight... as the temple skirmishers get whipped.

All hung up…. it’s another Roman donkey cavalry fight… as the temple skirmishers get whipped.

Pushing the Roman allied Spanish cavalry, who look over their shoulders as the light chariots trot forward.

With the Samnites fleeing, the Citizen cavalry slashing away, the chariots wheel for the final blow.

With the Samnites fleeing at left, the citizen cavalry slashing away, the chariots wheel for the final blow.

Grand view of the Etruscan army of King Mic as the Roman march right.

Grand view of the Etruscan army of King Mic as the Roman march right on turn five.

Etruscan news video pool feed for set up deployment and turns one to five: Set up and Turns One to Five

Turn Six: Remembered for the pulping of the Spanish cavalry. The Etruscan hoplite line “bends” to match the Roman flanking march. King Mic’s bodyguard is the rightmost unit.

Pulped Spanish.... picture says all.

Pulped Spanish…. picture says all.

Another view as sunlight baths the battlefield.

Clouds part.... Sunlight for King Mic's Etruscans.. as Rome keeps marching.

Clouds part…. Sunlight for King Mic’s Etruscans.. as Rome keeps marching.

Turn Seven: The Etruscan citizen left flank cavalry break from the “donkey fight” and are run down. Roman infantry approach the temple ruins (anything to loot?).

The left flank cavalry brawl goes on.... finally the Romans win as their infantry approach the temple ruins.

The left flank cavalry brawl goes on…. finally the Romans win as their infantry approach the temple ruins.

King Mic and bodyguard detach from the main hoplite line to face off the Roman left flank allies, along with the chariots and Etruscan cavalry. Finding the isolated Roman Consul Tim, the light chariots chase and toss javelins…. we missed.

The Roman allies whell about after chasing the Samnites, King Mic turns his bodyguard and Chariots chase the lone Roman Consul with javelins.

The Roman allies wheel about after chasing the Samnites, King Mic turns his bodyguard and chariots chase the lone Roman Consul with javelins.

Grand vie of the battle about half way.... a bit ragged Etruscan line is showing.

Grand vie of the battle about half way…. a bit ragged Etruscan line is showing.

Turns Eight to Twelve: The Roman army turns to face the Etruscans. On the distant right flank the last of the rallied Samnites are destroyed by the chasing Roman allies before the chariots could help. The next few turns are covered by the pool video since the Etruscan news service lost the static photos…. Several charges and retirements on the low hills.

Etruscan news video pool feed for turns six to twelve: Turns Six to Twelve

The Romans have turned to face finally. The disordered Etruscan line retires led by Son of Mic (his son).

The Romans have turned to face finally. The disordered Etruscan line retires led by Son of Mic (his son).

Turn Thirteen: The rest of the battle ranged across the left hills. Son of Mic lead his 1st class citizen hoplites while the 2nd class citizen hoplites did all the fighting. The big surprise was the 3rd class citizen hoplites…. they went on a tear through the Roman lines. Part of the problem was the Etruscan classical hoplite formation couldn’t turn or retire without a reform DL roll… some units passed, other failed for the moment. This created a disjointed battle line which the Romans tried to exploit with partial success. One unit of the 2nd class citizen (#3) rolled and stacked up Romans formations like cord wood…. finally running out of stream and forced to retire.

After several charges and countercharging, the fight on the hill continues. Check out the video!

After several charges and countercharges, the fight on the hill continues. Check out the video!

The bitter fighting on the low hills continues. A Principes unit fights on the larger left hill with Etruscan 2nd class citizens. Son of Mic and the 1st class citizen hoplites looks on. Roman Consul Tim “assists” the Etruscan #3 hoplites to rout from the Romans. As the reader can see, the former neat lines are gone…. it is unit on unit and open flanks everywhere. No photos of the right flank actions exist, but some video can be seen from the Etruscan news service.

Hands of the Romans "assist" the Etruscan rout, but only after a epic fight.

Hands of the Romans “assist” the Etruscan rout, but only after an epic fight.

Battle rages on…… turns 14, 15…..17, then 20. Neither side was giving in and finally the word that King Mic was killed on the right flank. Turns were going fast and dice flew. The Etruscan news video feed was the only recording of the action as the static camera team was pushed aside by the dice bearers.

As Son of Mic looks on... the 2nd class Citizen hoplites charge home on the blood soaked hill.

As Son of Mic looks on… the 2nd class Citizen hoplites charge home on the blood soaked hill.

Son of Mic charges in as he learns that his father is dead on the distant right flank. All hail King Mic!

The 1st class Citizen hoplites led by Son of Mic join in.... the battle videos will finish the battle.... report...

The 1st class Citizen hoplites led by Son of Mic join in…. the battle videos will finish the battle…. report… as the turns roll. The red arrows sort of give the feel of the confusion… pointing in all directions.

Etruscan video pool feed for turns thirteen to game end: Turns Thirteen to game end

Gallery of the above photos:

5,000 point armies:  Etruscan Army Roster (.xls)    Republican Rome Roster (.xls)

Rosters using the Clash of empires lists found on the COE forum site: Clash of Empires

Battle was one of our group’s monthly Clash of Empires 28mm ancients games. With very large collections, our small group try to stage near historical battles on a large-sized 16 foot by 6 foot table. WR wishes to thank David, Tim and Doug for completing this long and hard-fought Roman win. Guest are always welcome to join in, to toss dice, and try their luck sub-commanding their favorite ancient army. Contact WR for next event information.

A copy of the Clash of Empires blank roster we use: COE Roster blank spreadsheet (.xls)

Cheers from the Long Beach warren,

WR

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4 thoughts on “COE Etruscan State vs. Early Republican Rome

    • “The Etruscan news service thanks you for reading their journal of local events. Have you checked out the classified section for slightly used Etruscan armor. Special this week on helmets with and without dents.”

      Thanks TAL,
      Had some fun with that game and the Royal scribes…..
      More to come…..

      M aka WR

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