Our premise was simple:
1. Factions: This lends an element of team play to proceedings. With 14 players, it was 2 factions of 7. One faction represented the Britons under Vortigern, ably supported by Frank and Saxon allies. The other was the Saxon faction under Hengest who were trying to steal the British land.
2. Cardboard silver and gold crowns: Each faction leader wore a crown to denote their sovereignty. This added to the general fun and, as neither leader was 'usurped' during the day, they wore them all day...even to the pub at lunchtime...ahem....
3. A Map of Britannia. This was purely to aid the scoring system - there was no complex map movement. Each player owned a kingdom within their faction area. Each kingdom had 3 coloured pins representing provinces. If they lost a battle 'mightily', they surrendered a province to the enemy faction.
4. Chocolate Coins and cardboard treasure boxes: Representing faction wealth. If a player lost a battle in a close run defeat, he surrendered one gold coin from his faction's purse to the opposing faction
5. Doubles Games Pitched Battles in Round 1: Helps players who don't know each other to get involved and start talking - a great ice-breaker (learned from Scrivs' and Tom's game days...thanks chaps!) Obviously with 14 players, we needed a singles game too, so we set the kings against each other!
6. Scenarios: Games that actually meant something! We used some from the supplement, plus two written by Mike Whitaker and myself and one written by James Morris for an event I went to when Age of Arthur was first released. We allowed the kings to allocate their forces to the games in round 2 and 3.
Though I say so myself, it all worked rather well!!
Pics from Round 1 below...
|The Map before we started|
|A view down the tables: Vortigern's crew on the left and Hengest on the right as you look at it|
|Hengest (Phil M) in 'Warlord' mode|
|Dan's Romano Brits (well...actually my models) and Tony's Saxons line up against Andy's and Tom's Saxons|
|Grahame and Dave with the Franks (right) against Carl and Andy Mac with Saxons|
|Rival Kings face off...Vortigern (Scrivs, left) and Hengest (Phil, right)|
|Andy Mac dicing off in combat against Dave's Franks|
|Mike and Stephen survey the Romano-British/Welsh alliance facing them|
|Battle is joined!!|
|Dan and Tom in the Scouting clash - "we wants the hill and the pretty little hovel..."|
|Hengest (Phil) takes on Tony at the battle of Badon|
|Vortigern (Scrivs) takes on Mike in the woods of Cat Coit Celidon|
|Dave's Franks take on Stephen's Saxons in the cattle Raid (note Stephen's 'ghost' Duguth...)|
|Grahame's Franks take on Andy's Saxons trying to loot a wagon train with pilgrims near Wansford|
|Reuben tries to winkle Carl's Saxons out of the watchtower|
|Andrew's Romano-Brits defend Chester against Andy Mac's Saxons with the aid of some praying monks who add 2D6 'oracles' to his combat resolutions..if Andy Mac kills the Monks before the oracles are used up, they go to the Saxons|
|The map at the end of Round 2. Vortigern is gaining the upper hand...|
|Andy Mac takes on Scrivs in the scouting clash|
|Grahame's Franks prepare to take Mt Badon from Mike|
|Dave's Franks take on Carl's Saxons in Cat Coit Celidon|
|Reuben's Welsh take on Andy's Saxons in the cattle raid|
|Andrew's Romano-Brits successfully defend the watchtower from Tom's Saxons|
|Stephen defends Chester against Tony in Saxon-on-Saxon action|
|Dan's Romano British take on Hengest's Saxons at Wansford|
|The map at the end: Victory to Vortigern!|
So, the Vortigern faction won by virtue of taking more Saxon land, despite a heroic last ditch attempt from Hengest to rally his men to deeds of herosim...
The overall title of 'Bretwalda' couldn't have been harder-fought, as Scrivs (Vortigern), Phil (Hengest and Andrew Beer were all in first place with 9 scoring points (an ingeniously simple system) Overall victory went to Andrew because he won 3 mighty victories, whereas both Scrivs and Phil won two, but managed to kill an enemy general or two on the way...
Overall, most people seemed to have a lot of fun, which is the only way I measure success in these things! I would like to thank Tom and Scrivs whose own events at Eye of The Storm in the past year provided inspiration for us to have a go, to all at the club, but especially Mike, Grahame and Reuben for sterling organisational help and to all of the players who travelled from near and far to play toy soldiers with us. Here's to next year (I'm already plotting some ideas...)