I played the English and Bill the Scots.
England dealt: Herald 2 2 1 2
First turn Herald was successful on Bruce. Was this the right option? I think so. It made clearing the South much easier. It could have been used later in the turn as a response to Scot moves.
The rest of the cards were as expected. England moved Lancaster to Mentieth and Durham to Annan, where they spent the winter. Galloway was defeated and turned to England, leaving the entire South red. The Scots harried the North, mainly with Wallace and infantry, and took Mar, Angus and Buchan.
I think this all went according to expectations. I decided to simply take the South and work my way North. I was a little concerned about the Scots building up too much strength in the North, but figured I’d got a pretty decent start.
England dealt: 3 2 2 1 Truce Levy includes Edward
I played the Truce first, hoping that Scots would play their 3. It was a 2, but still ok – Bill could not do much.
Then I played my 3 to Bill’s 1. Edward, York (kt) and Lancaster (kt) went to Lothian. Bill moved the 2 units in Strathspey to Lochaber, which is a strong spot, threatening Argyll, Atholl and an outside chance of forcing Comyn to defect.
We both then played 2s. Edwards and his knights moved into Mentieth and I moved Steward from Lanark up to Atholl, deciding that I would prefer Bill to attack Argyll, thus keeping his armies separated. Bill must have been thinking along the same lines, because he moved two units from Fife and the two in Lochaber into Atholl. Steward and Atholl retreated to Argyll. I figured that Mentieth was relatively safe, but Comyn was in danger of being caught and I wanted to open up an escape route.
I played a 2 to Scots 1. I moved Comyn into Lochaber and Argyll and Atholl into Lochaber too. In retrospect this was not the best move, since Bill simply moved an army from Atholl into Argyll. Comyn was now safe, but Argyll and Atholl were both in trouble.
[I have forgotten one of the moves in this year]
Edward wintered in Mentieth, together with Lancaster infantry and Lancaster and York knights, as well as Mentieth himself.
Unfortunately I lost Atholl and Argyll to the Scots. I really should have only lost one – losing Argyll was bad play. Bill brought an extra unit in Argyll, making two units there, as well as in Moray, Strathspey, Buchan and Angus, plus 3 in Fife. I felt ok, but Edward would have to do a lot in the next year!
England dealt: Pillage Herald 2 2 1
An ok hand, but I wanted more numbers to use Edward to the maximum effect. Still, Herald is always nice. I decided to hold Herald and see how the year panned out.
We both played 2s, and I decided to move Bruce and Durham up to Lennox, plus Dunbar into Mentieth, looking to push forward heavily into Fife, or Atholl/Argyll should the opportunity arise. Bill moved two infantry to attack a lone Comyn in Lochaber. I thought that this was a mistake. Grant was eliminated and McDonald retreated. Comyn took two hits. Although it was two against one, Comyn got the first roll with four dice hitting on 3s or less. The odds were in my favour.
I decided that Pillage was a good option now. Comyn was on two hits and McDonald on one hit. Pillage would eliminate McDonald and restore Comyn to full strength. I also did not want to be left with two event cards for the last two cards of the year. Bill played Truce! Pillage did what I intended, but the year ended, forcing Edward and the knights home.
This was the turning point. Edward was all set to attack, hoping to force Wallace out of Fife, and perhaps retake Argyll as well, but winter came early. The weather can play cruel tricks …
England dealt: Truce 2 2 1 Victuals. No Edward in levy.
Well, a bad hand to make a comeback. The Scots attacked mercilessly. Comyn died first. I pushed units into Mentieth, but the monster battle there – 8 Scot units against 4 English – was bloody for both sides but resulted in a clear Scot victory. At the end of the year the Scots held Lennox, Mentieth and everything North.
England dealt: Truce 1 1 1 2. No Edward in levy.
England resigned during this turn. With a terrible hand, England could do little to resist the continuing Scot push South.
Result: crushing victory for the Scots. England were unlucky with the early winter, caused by Bill playing the only event card he was dealt for the entire game! A couple of mistakes on both sides. The English should have been more aggressive earlier with Edward, but you live and learn …
And if you never have, you should. These things are fun and fun is good.
NIce AAR. Great game!!