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Subject: [AAR] Lost Battles - First Mantinea rss

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bertrand d
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After a week of work and babysitting, I have finally found time on Friday night to unbox Lost Battles game received last week.

So which battle shall I start with ?
Mantinea of course ! The major hoplite fighting of the Peloponnesian War (or some would say its interlude)
Why?
Apart from three units (two of cavalry and a non-hoplite heavy infantry), the only class of fighter of this scenario is the Greek hoplite So few rules to bother about. Also there is only one Uninspired leader, the King of Sparta Agis and its value is low, so very manageable.

Described as the largest battle between Hoplites, this fight is not between Athens and Sparta, but in fact almost entirely between Greeks from the Peloponnese.
On one side, the tanks of the time, the Hoplites of Sparta (3,500 veterans) formed to fight during their whole lives and supported by non-Spartan on the left wing for a total of 9,000 men.
On the other side, the great rival of the Peloponnese, Argos, city with 7,000 hoplites, of which the Thousand elite body, supported by the cities of Arcadia and a body of cavalry and hoplite from Athens. Approximately 11,000 men.

But the advantage is clearly with Sparta, because of the bigger number of veterans and also the presence of King Agis, which gives a small bonus.

Both battle lines favor a push to the right (center and right for the Spartans who have more troops in good value)
Deployment seen from the side of Sparta

Deployment bird eye view


Historical set up, start on turn 2
The Argives begin with a miracle. The command dice clearly favor Argos. With a 6, Argos manages express move of almost all the right wing. Even with the presence of Agis, a die roll of 2 gives a much slower Spartan initial move.


The Argive hoplites take the first onslaught (2 hoplites "spent")


Turn 3
Time for Hoplite assault. Argive right with the veterans is inefficient. But a miracle again in the center, Spartan veterans suffer 4 units spent (even if two of them are shared with the attacker)!
The Athenian cavalry tries to sneak into the back of Sparta, but will sit useless against a Spartan hoplite unit left in the key area.


The Spartan response is poor, even if the right is now in place against the rear of the Argives, the center acting as a pivot.


Turn 4
Skirites and helots hoplites are wiped out, the Argive Right has completed first half of its job !


What will the center accomplish against the Spartan Veterans?
They resist! Only two exhausted hoplites remain but they keep position, while the rear units run away.
But is it Spartan treachery or Brasidas, a new hoplite comes to confront the Argive right flank.


Turn 5
The remaining troublemakers are eliminated, the Argive Center fled, the hoplites of Brasidas are cut into pieces. Spartan right moves towards the back of Argos. But the veterans on both sides are not moved by these destructions.


Turn 6
The two sides prepare the set for the final push.
The Argives have the advantage of having more troops in good shape, but are taken from the side. Also as their key area is now occupied, further destruction of a unit would lead to the defeat.


Elsewhere, a fight between a Spartan infantry defending the key area of ​​Sparta and the Athenian cavalry brings no result.


Turn 7
The time for decision has come !

Argos doubles the depth of its hoplites to give them more power. They manage to spend the last two hoplites from Sparta, but suffer heavy losses themselves, due to flank attacks !
But the lines remain in place. Sparta could not completely destroy a single enemy unit, so no rout test!


Turn 8
This is the last chance for Argos.

Ares is with Argos, with a command die of 5, which gives lots of additional bonus.
- An Elite Argive kills first Spartan unit, others do not rout!
- A second elite Argive and a second victim, others do not rout!
- The third elite has lost heart
- Then ordinary citizens roll a miracle "12" meaning two losses! Agis tries to rally but misses.


And here is the Spartan moral test: "1"!
1+1 veteran+1 heavy infantry-2(eight units destroyed)-1 (reduced units)= 0. As other units were destroyed in this area it is sufficient, Agis flees with the veterans and the Spartan cavalry.


Sparta has 5 hoplites left, so the fight can continue.


The non-elite Argive hoplites flee, but with three elite hoplites and Athenian cavalry battle does not end yet!

Turn 9
Argos can only turn around before a last loss of an elite unit forces reatreat.


Conclusion: Sparta controls the battlefield, but the losses are unbearable. The Spartan reputation for invincibility is completely destroyed.

MAJOR VICTORY FOR ARGOS
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Piero
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Life and death come and go like marionettes dancing on a table. Once their strings are cut, they easily crumble.
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What a game. And how unfortunate were those Spartans! thumbsupthumbsupthumbsup
 
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Eoin Corrigan
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Thanks for the AAR - my wife and I were looking at the box contents today, very timely
 
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David Murray
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Thanks for the AAR - we haven't played that scenario yet.
Did the Spartan leader have any luck with his rallies?
 
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Roger Taylor
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TrotskyTrotsky wrote:
Thanks for the AAR - we haven't played that scenario yet.
Did the Spartan leader have any luck with his rallies?

I was wondering that too. A hoplite leader is required to attempt rally on all hits to hoplite units in his zone (not just his own unit), so Agis should have been very busy -- and probably very dead before it was over.
 
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bertrand d
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rtaylor wrote:
TrotskyTrotsky wrote:
Thanks for the AAR - we haven't played that scenario yet.
Did the Spartan leader have any luck with his rallies?

I was wondering that too. A hoplite leader is required to attempt rally on all hits to hoplite units in his zone (not just his own unit), so Agis should have been very busy -- and probably very dead before it was over.


Well, I missed that ruleblush So I avoided to roll except for the guard and at the end.

But regarding Spartan luck, I would have expected him dead in the first encounter (same % to get killed 2-4 as to have unit rallied 10-12)
 
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David Murray
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I find the hoplite vs hoplite battles to be very brief violent affairs (as they should as pointed out by Prof Sabin in the Lost Battles book).

The hoplite leaders always having to try and rally hoplites means most don't make it to the end of a battle. The 'all out attack' option hoplites have to take when fighting other hoplites increases the pace of an attack. However the biggest effect seems to be the lack of the heavy infantry +1 modifier to morale when hoplites are adjacent to enemy hoplites - this really seems to sort the wheat from the chaff...

 
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It seems the images no longer work ... can you upload them somewhere else? (maybe to your personal BGG gallery)
 
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