Back in mid-late June Mark and I took advantage of a lull in our combined work schedules to play out a series of small games. This lead to us playing five wargames in two weeks, a record by our standards.
I managed to report only one of these at the time, so now intend to catch up, slowly but surely, on the others.
Numidians v Caesarean Romans
I'll begin with the second of our games, set in the time of the divine Julius and loosely, as one of those summer blouses that I'm sure "The Donald" loves, based on the battles in North Africa in 49 BC between the Optimates (Pompeians) under Publius Attius Varus and Populares (Caesareans) under Gaius Scribonius Curio.
Before engaging in battle against the Optimates and their Numidian allies, I naturally looked to the auspices.
A coincidence of the full moon and sunrise at dawn foretold of a great victory for our side!
The armies faced one another across a broad valley, broken by a small wood and rise in the middle of the field of battle.
Curio advanced the entire Populares' line, sending his Gallic and Thracian cavalry against the Numidians on his left and right.
The Populares' legions reached the central hill.
Varus sent forward his elephants.
After their initial success, the cavalry on our right could not resist the onslaught of elephants and those pesky Numidians!
In the centre and centre-right, our legions continued their struggle against the obstinate Pachyderms.
With the grey beasts finally beaten off, Curio sent his legions to deal with the Pompeians pseudo-legionaries.
Fresh to the fight, the Optimates legions were getting the better of it.
Though outnumbered four to one, the cavalry on our left flank launched a desperate counter-attack.
The legionaries suffering reverses in the centre and with both flanks threatened, the Populares' army broke.
It had been clear from the beginning.
In their overzealousness to please, our wise men had missed the obvious portent of the coming storm.