The Argive General gasps as he sees the fruition of his planning come to pass. Dirty ragamuffin Argive Psiloi crest the hill and fall upon the cream of Sparta (the opposite flank to the General was the point of second honour). These Spartans now found themselves between a rock and a hard place (see below):
The die is cast: Sparta 6+2 (4 - 2 overlaps, flank and rear) = 8, versus 9, Agive 4+5 (4 + 1 flank support). The Spartans could not have fought better, not doubled but beaten with no place to run they died where they stood (see below, Argos 1 - Sparta 0):
The Spartan General's riposte is to advance his battle line and turn the Argive right flank (see below, "Here it comes!")
As expected the shattering of spear on shield spells disaster for the brave Argive hoplites on their "second point of honour" (Argos 1 - Sparta 1). The Spartan juggernaut is poised to roll up the Argive right flank. Then a shout of victory as the Spartan spears facing the Argive General are "doubled". Unexpectedly fate swings in the favour of the Agives (see below: Argos 2 - Sparta 1):
Carrying forth the initiative the Argive hoplites on the hill advance 'shoulder to shoulder' overlapping the remaining Spartan spear. To add insult to injury the ugly Psiloi again seal the rear. Sensing victory is near the Argive General calmly explains the situation to his Spartan opponent and the dice roll (see below):
With a whimper rather than a bang the third Spartan hoplite spear is removed. The Spartan Army has almost reached its breaking point (see below, incredulously it is now Argos 3 - Sparta 1. ):
Not phased in the slightest, the Spartan General responds in the only way he knows how, "Spartan's Advance!" The ranks of Spartan spears and cloaks of scarlet descend once more upon the Argive right (see below, the Argive spears have been placed in mortal peril by their callous Argive General, he intends to buy time with their death to win elsewhere):
Predictably the Argive spears fall. This must be the oldest trap in Ancient warfare to fall into. Get the Spartans looking as if they are beaten, and you are going to win but merely you make them annoyed. You think you have them beaten, on the ropes but they come back and give you double the fight you expected (see below, Argos 3 - Sparta 2):
Suddenly an unexpected rush of Spartan spears leads to another cry of victory as the Spartan King himself engaged in combat smashes yet another Argive spear in by "doubling" it. This battle looks as if it is going to be a short and brutal affair like a knife fight in a telephone box! (see below, split honours "even Stephens", Argos 3 - Sparta 3):
The Spartans certainly "did all the telling" at the end of this sequence. The Argives were given a lesson in war but have they learned anything from it? The initiative is with Argos, one more stand would spell doom for the Spartans! That small, insignificant Argive Psiloi still looks as if it holds the key to victory.
Next: Spartan remember, "With it" or "On it"! Argive, "Be sure to take fortunes offering when it comes your way"