Showing posts with label hott. Show all posts
Showing posts with label hott. Show all posts

Friday, 22 June 2018


On a cold winter's night there's nothing better than a couple of games of HOTT. So it's a good job I had a couple last night. I played Geoff, and he used my boring  bog-standard High Elves. I used The Spawn of Tiamat.

Here's the first game. I defended and did a weighted attack on Geoff's left.

It was a fairly quick game. Geoff's line of shooters and spears was a tough nut to crack, but a couple of lucky combats destroyed his archers, and then a second charge by the various elements I had classified as knights destroyed his spear general to win the game.

Geoff defended in the second game, and chose to run his mounted as riders rather than knights. I attacked his left again, and despite their position on the hill got an advantage over the Elven cavalry.

Meanwhile my chaotic beasts worked their way around his other flank, hiding in the woods to avoid the accurate Elven archery.

Unfortunately from that point onwards it all fell apart. Geoff had his Elf Prince hero in reserve, and took out my hero (Tiamat's consort, Qingu), before destroying my right flank.

His spear-line pushed forward, engaging Tiamat herself.

My beasts put up a valiant fight on my left, and Tiamat managed to ensorcell the enemy hero as well. Both armies were hovering on the verge of breaking, when Geoff lined up a fantastic set of combats and destroyed 7AP of my army in one turn, including Tiamat herself. With an undeployed dragon in my army, the 18AP I lost meant I had a single beast on the board. I think this is possibly the largest defeat I've eve had in a game of HOTT, although the 18-10 scoreline testified to a bloody game.

So, one game each. Not a bad evening.

Meanwhile others were playing Black Powder in 15mm, in preparation for a Waterloo game on Sunday.

And Gary and Caesar played Maurice -- Austrians and Ottomans.

Gary was trying out an experimental activation mechanism, using sub-commanders, which allowed multiple groups to activate during a turn. It looks like it was mostly successful, although the size of the game meant that they didn't finish the battle by the end of the evening.

Friday, 8 June 2018


I played HOTT last night for the first time in what seems like ages. Just a couple of games, but they really hit the spot in what's been a bit of a rough, stressful week.

Peter was my opponent in both games, and went for the 'Try a Dragon' option in both of them.

In the first game I used Prester John, attacking Daenerys Targaryen's ex-slaves and mercenaries. And dragons. Peter ended up with a couple of woods in his deployment area, which made his setup and command quite tricky.

The cream of both armies was on one flank. I attacked; knights and elephants led the assault, whilst wild warriors rushed to secure the woods.

The battle swung back and forth, but the Targaryen army got the worst of it, with mobs of freed slaves being cut down in the woods, and Prester John's knights riding down the Dothraki and the Unsullied. Then the dragons arrived.

Unfortunately they were too late to turn the tide of battle; another charge by the knights saw Daenerys's bodyguard cut down, forcing her to mount a dragon and abandon what was left of her army.

A rare win for Prester John (who actually took no part in the fighting).

In the second game Peter decided to give my Hawaiians a try. They are a tricky army, that only start with 14AP on the table - a total of six elements. The rest of the army consists of a god, a dragon and some lurkers, so the army relies on luck to get the best troops into play. I used my Fishmen - a force of spears supported by artillery, missile troops and a mighty sea-troll.

The core of the Hawaiian army - spears backed up by their hero king. In the woods are the rank and file warriors, classed as warband.

Pele the volcano goddess put in an early appearance. She watched the battle for a couple of turns, then got bored and went away.

The Fishmen closed on the Hawaiian centre whilst their missile-troops engaged the warband in the woods.

The Fishmen had dragged their artillery right across the battlefield, ready to take a pop at the Hawaiian general. Just as they got it into position the Mo'o (dragon) appeared and destroyed it.

The climax of the battle. The Mo'o attacked the flank of the Fishman army, whilst their troll attacked the Hawaiian stronghold. The troll died, but the spears held, and eventually ground down the Hawaiian troops to pick up a win.

Also on show last night was an AWI game put on by Ian, featuring 25mm figures and using the old WRG 1685-1845 rules.

American troops tried to hold a hamlet full of supplies against marauding British and Loyalist troops somewhere in South Carolina.

There were plenty of players, who were apparently obliged to communicate with each other by courier. Eventually the British prevailed in what looked like a very entertaining game.

Sunday, 8 April 2018

Maipo Again

I played another refight of Maipo this afternoon. With next door deciding to pressure-wash their driveway and the house over the road trying to offset the noise with some 'tunes' I wouldn't say my concentration was at its best, but I gave it a good go.

Here's the armies set up. I went for an ahistorical deployment, sticking the Chilean infantry on the patriot right and the Argentinians on the left. The far left of the Patriot army was covered by the Horse Grenadiers. The Royalists were in a standard deployment; some infantry and artillery on the isolated hill, their cavalry covering their right flank and the elite infantry in the centre.

The Patriot plan of attack was to lead with the Horse Grenadiers, advance the Argentinians against the centre and hold back the more vulnerable Chileans, simply using them to cover against any advance by the Royalist left

It was a plan which relied on the Horse Grenadiers sweeping a; before them. The aim was to inflict all of the casualties required to win on the Royalist right by setting up flank attacks. But first the Royalist cavalry had to be eliminated.

The Royalist cavalry held, and some of their infantry swung around to aid them.

The Horse Grenadiers fought their way out of the sticky situation initially, eliminating some Royalist cavalry ...

... but losing some Horse Grenadiers to the flanking infantry.

The Argentinian infantry was now in position and engaging the Royalists with musketry. However without the decisive cavalry attack coming in from the flank the Royalists held firm.

San Martin ordered an advance by the bulk of the Chilean infantry. Their columns drove back the Royalist left.

However the attack on the Royalist right was still stalled, the centre was basically unopposed and now the Royalists on the extreme left were advancing on the exposed Chilean flank.

San Martin ordered a bayonet attack down the line. This broke some Royalists, but the rest rallied and held.

The Royalist left counterattacked, and the Chileans were shattered, falling back.

Meanwhile the Royalist right held firm. The Patriots actually only had to destroy two more elements to win the battle, but couldn't quite finish them off.

The Royalist line reformed, looking as strong as ever.

One last Patriot attack failed to break them, and the loss of another element of infantry took them over their breakpoint, giving the Royalists the victory.

The Patriot plan was a bold one, relying on the cavalry winning quickly, and that didn't happen. Holding back the Chileans isn't a bad idea, as they are vulnerable to unlucky combat rolls. This is something I need to think about with these rules; militia can be very fragile and possibly too fragile. But changing it won't be as simple as I'd hoped.

Thursday, 5 April 2018

Maipo 200

Today is the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Maipo, which basically secured Chile's independence from Spain, so obviously I decided that I would have to refight it.

I have, in fact, games it a few times, most of which are covered on this blog. Here's some links to the relevant posts:

Refight (Liberated Hordes)
Refight (Liberated Hordes)
Refight (Liberated Hordes)
Refight (Rocket's Red Glare)

For those not in the know, here's a brief history.

For a start, everything I've read for the past few years has called it the Battle of Maipú. However I've called it Maipo for the past 20 years and I'm going to stick to that.

Anyway, in February 1817, José de San Martín led an army across the Andes, defeated the Spanish  and captured Santiago. This is the campaign that includes the battle of Chacabuco, which I've refought a few times before. Look it up. I'll wait.

San Martin set Bernardo O'Higgins up as the Supreme Director of Chile and, a year after Chacabuco, O'Higgins declared Chile independent. However, the Spanish viceroyalty sent an army to Santiago under General Osorio and the Patriot armies were defeated at the Battle of Cancha Rayada in March 1818. After their defeat, the Patriots regrouped, rebuilt their army in a matter of days, and eventually numbered about about 6,000 men, a mixture of Argentinians and Chilean patriots.

Meanwhile, Gen. Osorio realised that he had not defeated the Patriot army conclusively at Cancha Rayada, and moved against them. They met near south of Santiago, at Maipo.

Both armies formed up on ridges, facing each other across a valley. The Patriots outnumbered the Royalists, but their army was less experienced and was still recovering from the earlier defeat at Cancha Rayada. In addition the Royalist army contained a regiment of Spanish veterans from the Peninsular campaign.

After an ineffective artillery bombardment, San Martin advanced against the Royalists on both flanks,  and drove back their left. The Royalists counterattacked, mostly in the centre where their better troops were stationed, but the Patriots held and pushed them back. The solid Spanish units held off attack after attack but eventually gave ground, and Osorio fled the field. His successor managed to rally part of the army, but it was too late and the Patriots forced them to surrender, winning a decisive victory.

As I have done many times before, I used my Liberated Hordes HOTT variant for the refight, and my 6mm figures on 25mm frontage stands. This gives a teeny-tiny game with a massed battle look.

This is the terrain. The Royalists would set up to the right and the Patriots to the left. Some of the Royalists had to set up on the smaller hill in the foreground.

The Patriot army, a mix of regular and militia infantry with a solid striking force of elite cavalry.

The Royalist army; smaller, but with a core of elite infantry veterans.

And the deployment. Caesar took the Patriots, whilst I took the Royalists. Both armies had to set up entirely on their own ridge, except that the Royalists had to deploy three elements on the isolated hill. The Royalists deployed first.

Actually I think this is one of the first times I've tried this battle with a 'free' deployment, rather than replicating the historical setup.

The rather poor Royalist cavalry deployed on the right. In the distance you can see the Patriot cavalry deployed to advance and destroy them

Caesar simply used his artillery to cover his right. I advanced my isolated infantry towards it, hoping to turn the Patriot flank.

Caesar went for a classic attack; he formed his infantry up into columns and advanced as quickly as possible. The first exchanges of musketry saw losses on both sides. The low-quality Chilean infantry suffered particularly badly. However the Patriot artillery eliminated some of the infantry advancing against them.

Poor PIPs held the patriot cavalry back at this stage. The Royalists stayed on the safety of the hill.

Caesar used San Martin's general bonus to push as many of his troops forward as possible, and broke up the Royalist line some more.

The Patriot cavalry attacked. One element of Royalist horse ran away instantly, but the other put up more of a fight, pushing back its opponent.

At this point the Royalist PIPs dried up, and their left flank was only able to mount a half-hearted attack on the Patriot right.

With his army falling back, the coward Osorio decided to quit the field. Marvellous.

This left the Royalists even more starved for PIPs and only one element away from defeat. Caesar launched attacks on two vulnerable Royalist units: the remaining cavalry and one of the units of Spanish regulars. Both elements saw off their opponents. Now was the time for the Royalist army to pull together and inflict enough damage on the patriots to drive them off.

They rolled another '1' for PIPs, and for the second bound in a row none of the Royalist troops moved. Their cavalry couldn't hold out forever, and its loss broke the army giving the patriots a win.

This was a pretty straightforward game, but we both enjoyed it. Once again the shaky quality of the Patriots made their attack risky, but the quality of the elite Horse Grenadiers saw them through. The Royalists have good troops poorly commanded, and spent a lot of the game in a state of command paralysis. If the same paralysis happens to the Patriots then the Royalists can pull of a win, but that didn't happen in this game.

So, for our 200th anniversary refight a Patriot win, securing the liberation of Chile, was the right result.
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