The Generals sat comfortably (Thebans to the top, Athenians bottom, see below) with ale, coffee, water, biscuits, crisps and cakes to hand (who said wargamers aren't as dedicated as Olympic athletes? See below).
The historic scenario options (Theban 'deep phalanx' and 'Athenian characters' [aka Socrates and Alcibiades]) had not been chosen, so the Thebans were left sitting in a strong defensive position on a hill, lined toe-to-toe with the Athenians below them. Historically the Athenians initially "saw a chance" with the slight overlap in the main hoplite battle lines. In this replay however the Thebans had no reason (as yet) to leave their defensive position of strength, so the Athenians strategy revolved around getting the Thebans out of their comfort zone and off the hill. The Athenians boldly decided to take the initiative and "attack on the wings" hoping for 'good luck' with the dice along the way.
The Athenian light Psilio on the left flank quickly crowded into the defensively good (at least for their troop type) 'rough' terrain, far away from the sound of advancing horses hooves (see below):
The Athenian right flank assumes a symmetric strategy as the Athenian cavalry keep pace with their light infantry (see below):
The Thebans are keen to enter the game, as they perceive they have a slight tactical advantage in the fact they have two cavalry stands to their opponents one cavalry and one light horse stand. The Theban light troops are primarily interested in defending the ends of their hoplite battle line (see below):
The symmetry is again very noticeable (see below):
Although in a surprise move the Athenians on the right flank pull back, or are they seeking to exploit teh faster speed of the Athenian "light horse". With a good dose of pips it could in theory race past the slower Theban cavalry (see below):
The opening moves end with a tense sense of of expectation.
Next: First Clash of Arms