WAB weekend (le Kremlin-Bicêtre)
A hot weekend in Paris (17-18 June 2006)
Dennis Klinkenberg and I entered the French campaign weekend "Figurine et Stratégie under the aegis of FFJH - La Levée en Masse" in Le Kremlin-Bicêtre on the 17th and 18th of June 2006.
Leaving the Netherlands at 2 o'clock in the morning, to start playing in Paris at 9 o'clock until 6 o'clock in the evening. (We drank a lot of coffee that day.)
It was a very interesting campaign to play with at least 60 players in several games, like DBA and Wild West skirmish games. The 40 WAB players were divided in three time periods, with 10 of them in the classical era. With two players per fraction we played 4 battles this weekend. Every game the fractions had to decide which country to attack (anywhere in the Mediterranean). As an extra, every army also had to place a camp in their deployment zone. If the enemy managed to attack this camp they received an extra 100 victory points.
There were players from France, England, Spain and the Netherlands. All players were very easygoing, and were not only playing to win. As it should be. The first three battles were single player battles played on the first day. And the second day the fractions joined forces to battle one of the other fractions. .
Around the mediteranian there were the following fraction active:
Marian Romans joined with Spanish forces
The Marian Romans were played by Dennis (NL) and Stephan. Dennis is an expert in using drilled troops and FBIGO ability. The second day, Dennis joined with the Spanish Carthaginians.
The Spanish forces were the best painted ones (in my opinion) and played by a Frenchman I could only call "crazy". I have never seen anybody so enthusiastic. Picture someone that shouts at his dice to produce good results…..every single roll !!! And cursing his dice whenever the roll is not what he expected. I don't know what he cursed, but it sounded beautiful in French (though players next to him got red in the facial region). A shame I could not fight this player.
Two Republican Roman forces
The first battle I played against one of the Republican forces. He managed to paint his whole army in 3 months and knew how to use the manipular HatPW rules perfectly. And he didn't fall for the traps I created. Very interesting to play against. Despite this the battle ended in a draw, much to my surprise. I planned to advance up to a narrow opening between two pieces of difficult terrain, and try to lure my opponent into a trap. But the enemy had the same idea it seamed. Having difficulties on the flanks I decided to take the initiative at last, but the Romans quickly redeployed to attack my flanks if I would attack. On the flank two roman units were waiting, unafraid, for my wedge. Again a stalemate. On the other flank it was a game of cat and mouse between a few skirmishing units. I deployed in a refused right wing. After the last turn We found out the Romans won by 20 points. A draw!
Every army was very well painted. Which surely added to the fun of playing with and against them.
Two Greek armies
Macedonians allied with Epirotes
The Macedonian players Chris (UK) joined with me to form the Successor fraction. An experienced player that radiated rest and seniority. He appointed me the leader of the fraction (to be able to hold that against me if we would loose). He was smart too! ;-)
We joined forces in the battle against a combined army of Scythians and Indians.
Indian and Scythian armies showed up from the east.
They had very well painted exotic armies with them. In the final battle we played against the Indian and Scythian armies expecting to get shot to pieces. But luck was on our side and after we repelled an elephant back into the Indian ranks things got very hard for the Indians. We managed to take the shrine in the centre en hold it, for an additional 200 victory point
One of the things that made this weekend a great success was, besides the very friendly and hospitable Frenchmen, was the fact that every player knew their rules very well. A great club indeed.
In a sidestep Jérôme Grebet and I played a successor test battle of late Greeks against the Epirotes. To my surprise he had me outflanked with two thureophoroi units, even though I am always keen on good flanks. We were both testing each others strengths and weaknesses for quite a long time, manoeuvring and counter manoeuvring. Jérôme managed to move one thureophoroi towards the back of my army. A disaster was within sight of the Epirotes. But soon after that my light cavalry managed to slip behind his lines too, and the slings unit killed 4 heavy cavalry models. Now I finally could sent my wedge to the other side to withstand the thureophoroi there that were already threatening my phalanx. And the hesitating Epirote phalanx finally advanced. The Epirotes had the best change to win this battle after bad luck with the dice with the panic tests, and my light cavalry behind the Greek lines would certainly chase the Greeks of the table. A very inspiring battle it was.
A nice feature about the games was the help players offered whenever someone wanted to make a move that was not wise: they did not come up with special rules after a charge or so, they warned you in advance. And yes, the typical French bread at lunch made things complete. ;-)
After the last battle and the price-giving we took the 5 hours drive back to Holland, with a few of the prices in our pocket (look to the picture on the right).
Many thanks to the organisers Jérôme Grebet and Matthieu Batiste, and all others that attended and organised this fantastic game weekend! We returned a few months later. Read here for information on that campaign..