Tuesday, 21 April 2009

Harran 1104 Battle Report - Part 2

This battle report describes the first eleven sequence cards of turn 2. The action took about 45 minutes to play.

It was the Franks who took the initiative first by bringing the Antiochenes into the fight. Seeing Baldwin in such dire trouble and in imminent danger of being killed or captured by the enemy, some of Bohemond's knights rode, like the 7th cavalry, to his rescue. They almost extricated him completely but, failing to rout the Ghulams facing him, they only managed to prevent the Ghulams from pursuing Baldwin to his sure demise. He rode to the rear, where miraculously he not only succeeded in rallying the small cluster of Knights around him (the unit had 0 Unit integrity), he also managed to rally his foot who had fallen into uncontrolled advance. It was his last act before falling to marauding Turcoman tribesmen.

Jekermish, who had held his cavalry back to await events now rode into the fray, thundering into the Flank of Baldwin's foot sergeants and positioning themselves to take on Joscelin at the same time. The foot sergeants, like Baldwin's Knights had done previously, held.

With support coming up from their rear, the Turcoman command facing Joscelin (rolling a triple move on the same 'March' card) changed position - from Joscelin's front to Joscelin's rear. They took a lot of casualties to archery as they did so, but Joscelin looked doomed, for once in that position they launched such a barrage into the rear of his Armenian guard that they almost ceased to exist. Joscelin had no option but to advance his battered cavalry through to the front of his infantry (a forced 'push back' advance) and to form his infantry into pitched defence (back to back) formation.

Whilst Bohemond sorted out his lines, it was now time for Tancred to go on a ride to clear some space to manoeuvre by scattering the Turcomans who, seemingly everywhere, were threatening to get behind the Antiochenes lines. This mad charge (a 30" triple move) succeeded but left him alone and exposed in the rear of the enemy.

The photos above show the positions at the end of the session. The 11 points (per side) of initiative came out in dribs and drabs, in 1s 2s and 3s, with one 5 point initiative. The roll for the next initiative decided the end time of the session for me - both sides will get 10 initiative and the Saracen will chose to go first!

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