"Pop" there goes a Greek Psiloi. First blood going to the Thebans. The Athenian strategos rolled his eyes imploringly to the heavens after his inauspicious start to "wargaming combat" with of roll "1". The Thebans tucked in a nice competent "5" to butcher their opponents mercilessly. "Route 66" to the Greek Allied Camp was now open (see below):
- Athens down 1 stand, three more and their army goes demoralised
- Allied Greek Army 1, eleven more required to army break and rout point
If you thought the Thebans looked in a 'vulnerable' from the last post, take a look at this! Is this really the mighty Theban army of legend or is it a bunch of dancing farm girls "stripping the willow" in front of the massed hoplite spears of the Athenians!!!! (see below). So are the Athenians going to "go for it" and roiute those disorganised ? Nope, they stick resolutely on the hill (obviously listening to their granddads 'fireside' way of doing things in the old days).
Meanwhile the Spartans "have" toed forward to enjoy the pleasure of some ineffective Persian archers (see below), but why push forward with only four stands of spears, leaving the other eight stands of the Spartan army outside of effective supporting distance (which is about two inch when you are a hoplite). I've got a bad feeling about that Sarge! OK. Yes, yes it is far, far easier to watch and umpire than to play (your first game) as shown by the tension marks on the forehead of Pausinias throughout the battle.
Clash of arms, CRUNCH!
The Spartan four take on the Persian six, now that is the mark of a brave and confident Spartan commander (see below). The Combat dice odds do still favour the Spartans though (all Spartan Spears are at +4) to the horror of the Persians (+2 Light Horse, +3 Cavalry, +2 Psilio, but at least a +4 Spear [plus a friendly overlap] at the end, reading right to left down the line). If the Spartan starts well he might well get a overlap advantage too.
Note: in strict DBA terms: recoil and the "buttocks of death" were not being strictly enforced for simplicity's sake .. as seen here it would have potentially made it disastrous for the Spartans as if they suffered multiple recoils they could eliminate each other which seems overly harsh. However after "reviewing the photographs", I see "Greek groups" contacting "Persian individual" elements which would in theory force the individual element to align to the "Greek group". So in a way I think it all panned out 'even' to make as straight battle pairings.
Good combat dice means that the Spartan wins all the combats but finds out that the light and mounted recoil and flee from the slow moving spears without him achieving any kills (see below). Now the Spartans have to await the Persian response as Mardonius rolls his Pip dice.
The Persians manfully come back at the Spartan and through a "skillful feat of arms" (aka good dice throwing) push the Spartans about into a ragged line (see below). Still no "deaths" caused but the Spartans will have to spend a lot of PiPs to sort out this messy affair of a battle line into some semblance of order. Still if he backs up these four brave Spartan stands with the other eight stands of his army there may be time to win this convincingly. However at this moment in time they are fixed firmly to the ridge line facing off the other Persians and "not fighting". Is that wise Pausinius?
The Spartans are up next but ... where has that Persian horse gone to (with its five inch movement, yes that's two and a half times faster than a hopite [in "Hancock's half hour" old money])?