Friday 9 June 2023

An Ancient Campaign - Part 11

This hypothetical campaign is about to come to an end with the final and decisive battle ready on the tabletop. Mago, the Carthaginian commander, who has led his army along the coastline of Luminaria, fighting a series of engagements, has arriving at the very gates of its capital, Aurelia. Will Mago emerge triumphant, securing a resounding victory for Carthage? Or will the resolute Romans, under the leadership of the wounded but unwavering Marcus, prevail against the odds, their ranks bolstered by the arrival of seasoned veteran units? The fate of this campaign hangs in the balance.

Battle Report… Opening Game

The two opposing armies stood poised for battle on opposite sides or a valley. Positioned strategically at the heart of their respective forces, the commanders of Rome and Carthage stationed their Heavy Infantry upon hills. With their opening manoeuvres, both sides swiftly advanced their flanks, seeking to gain an advantage. Carthage's left flank emerged as the strongest, its formidable War Elephants leading the charge, bolstered by the valiant Gaul Warbands and nimble Light Infantry. The mighty Elephants surged forward, crashing into the steadfast ranks of Roman Heavy Infantry, while the Gaul Warbands found themselves locked in a fierce struggle against Roman light infantry. On the opposing flank, the Roman cavalry exhibited remarkable tenacity, standing firm against the onslaught of Carthage's seasoned horsemen, refusing to yield an inch. The stage was set, and the battle raged on.

The armies are deployed and facing each other across the valley.

The elephants spearheaded the Carthaginian left flank attack followed by Gaul Warbands and Light Infantry.

The Roman Light Infantry having delayed the supporting Gaul Warbands allowing the Roman heavy infantry to deal with the War Elephants. 

Battle Report… Mid-Game

As the battle raged on, the Roman commander, seizing a moment of opportunity, gave the order for his Heavy Infantry in the centre to advance. Descended from their defensive position on the hill, their aim clear—to strike at the heart of the Carthaginian forces. Seeing the threat, the Carthaginians responded swiftly, bringing their own Heavy Infantry down from the hill to meet the Roman challenge head-on.

Meanwhile, on the Roman right flank, the mighty War Elephants wreaked havoc, trampling through the Roman ranks with their sheer strength. However, as the combat wore on, the elephants, weakened and disoriented by relentless Roman assaults, succumbed to panic and were forced into a chaotic retreat, leaving behind a trail of losses.

On the opposite flank, the Roman cavalry, closely supported by a unit of veteran Heavy Infantry, had managed to hold their ground and secure a crucial advantage. Their combined efforts ensured the flank remained firmly under Roman control, bolstering their overall position on the battlefield.

Sensing an opportunity the Roman heavy infantry advanced in the centre, moving off the hill.

Seeing the danger in the centre the Carthaginian centre moves forward to counter the Roman threat in the centre. Meanwhile, the Roman cavalry were holding their own against Carthage’s veteran cavalry on the right flank.

The battle lines were starting to see a few units worn out and routing. The battle is well balanced with neither side having a tangible advantage.

The elephants had provided their worth and the Roman right was under pressure and out numbered. Not that all was going Carthage’s way, they were feeling quite vulnerable on the opposite flank and prepared to throw in their reserves.

Battle Report… End Game

As the battle wore on, the toll of casualties began to take its toll on both sides, and the decisive moment loomed closer. The Carthaginian commander, recognising the strain on his right flank, issued orders for them to hold their ground as best they could and, if necessary, make tactical withdrawals. His hopes rested now on the strength of his left flank, which now possessed a numerical advantage over their Roman counterparts. The plan was clear—to outflank the remaining Roman flank units and launch a devastating assault on the rear of the Roman centre.

Although the Roman Heavy Infantry initially held firm, their resilience was soon tested as the attacking Gaul Warbands began to roll up their flank and centre. The Roman forces, realising the futility of further resistance sought to salvage what remained of their units, retreating from the field of battle. The day belonged to the Carthaginians, whose successful manoeuvres and War Elephant units had secured them victory.

Carthaginian forces were retiring on their right flank, hoping to buy time as their left flank swings round to attack Rome’s centre.

The Roman centre starts to collapse as they are attacked from the rear. With their greater numbers and better position it is a Carthaginian victory.

End of the Campaign…

Mago makes an offering at a nearby Temple for Carthage’s victory before entering Aurelia through their city gates with his army.

The campaign has reached its conclusion in quite a short space of time. There will be one final campaign related post looking at answering the following questions:
  1. How effective was the campaign structure and whether it provided valuable prompts for crafting a narrative for the 5 games played?
  2. How the use of the AI tool - ChatGPT - helped for generating narrative scripts and campaign background details?
  3. How did the modifications and changes to the One-Hour Wargames Ancient Rules work out?


  1. Excellent and gripping report Peter. Thoroughly enjoyable.

  2. A cracker of a game! It seems the Carthaginians didn't gain an overwhelming advantage from their winning record as the final game was quite tight. Did I understand correctly that you used the OHW Ancients rules rather than your D3 set?

    1. I opted to go with the OHW rule set and not the D3 Ancients. As for the game it certainly was in the balance until towards the end, then the advantage of numbers tipped it to Carthage.

    2. I'm interested in why you opted or OHW over D3?

    3. Prior to the campaign I had been trying a few different modifications to OHW rules, and having got in the swing of using them, decided to just stick with originals when playing the campaign.

  3. An excellent conclusion to a vey enjoyable, mini campaign Peter! I must admit, I as hoping the Romans might triumph in the final battle, and fir a while there, it looked on the cards, but the Gods smiled on Mago in the end!

    1. It would have been just as pleasing end to the campaign if the Romans had won.

  4. Another enjoyable, thoughtful, and rapid fire campaign, Peter. Your game turn arounds were at a pace to which I could barely keep up. I was very pleased to be able to participate in one of the battles. Great job! I look forward to your campaign wrap-up.

    1. It has been a quick and busy campaign over approximately two weeks, including the enjoyable remote game with yourself. Writing the posts detailing the campaign progress and games was an occasional challenge.

  5. What's next?


    1. The next campaign is most likely going to be another Sci-Fi mini campaign based around Games Workshop’s Necromunda game.