Session Report – Platea 479 BC
This session report finds us at Platea, where the Persians are facing a combined Spatan-Athenian army. This fight resulted in the Persian Army left behind after Xerxes returned to Persia being destroyed, effectively ending the Persian threat to Greece. I am returning to the standard method of play, for this scenario anyway, and looking at both hands to make the best play possible. My last session report, Himera, may be found here:
I am writing the session report as I go along, so I don’t know the outcome as I’m writing.
Abbreviations are all capital letters for units: I = infantry, C=cavalry, H=heavy, M=Medium, L=light, and aux for auxilia. A number and a letter represents a card – so 4C is Order four center, 2L is Order 2 left, etc.
Greece – 2c, 4r, Order Med, Move-Fie-Move, Center Leader, Right Leader
Persia – Line Command, Line Command, Double Time, Out Flanked, 3r
The Greeks open with a 2c, moving a LI to gain the center hills, and forcing a Persian auxilia to retreat. The bows miss a Persian MI. Greece draws a 3c.
The Persians Line Command their left foot units to bring their bows into play. The Greek LI on the hills take a hit, as well as a MI on the Greek right. A Leader Any card is drawn.
Pausanius is ordered up on a 4r card. No damage is done by the auxilia’s javelins. Spartacus is the draw.
Persai Line Commands the left again, withdrawing the MI and aux away from the looming phalanx. The archers stand, since they can evade, and whittle down the MI to one block. They get First Strike on the draw.
Greece plays Spartacus, and gets two HVY, a LIT, and a LDR result. The Greek left advances a HI and a MI, and the right scatters two Persian bowmen, with a small loss. Order Light is the replacement.
The Persians go with a 3r, moving the bow back up, but all their ranged attacks miss. They get a 2c.
Greece goes with their Move-Fire-Move, and brings up the light units. The fire is just as ineffective as the Persians was. They draw a Left Leader card.
Persia plays Out Flanked, getting the cavalry into the action. On the right, the two cav swap blocks with the Greek auxilia. On the right, Mardonius and a bow move to attack. The bow takes a potshot at the MI, but misses, and Maradonius attacks the LI, who takes one hit while evading. A 3l is drawn.
The Greeks order medium, and Andromachus moves up, while the other MI causes the LC to evade back to the hills for no loss. Line Command is drawn.
Persia orders 3l. A bowman misses the HI, but the auxilia scores a double HVY hit on the phalanx. Mardonius runs down the MI for a 1-0 lead, then decides to press his luck against Pausanius’ HI, since its down to half strength. His boldness is rewarded with a Swd and a Ldr hit to take a 2-0 lead. 3l is drawn.
Greece goes to his left, with the Left Leader card. The auxilia pins the Persian MC, and Andromachus moves in for the kill. The Greeks get on the board, and now trail 2-1. The MI attacks the Persian MI and runs into the First Strike card. However, the Persian dice are stone cold, and they miss completely – with only one banner rolled, which the Greeks ignore. The battle back does one hit and a banner, which the Persian elect to take, hoping to avoid the phalanx and Aristides. Aristides falls upon the other MI, and rolls 2 MED, a SWD, and a LDR to destroy the full strength MI. It’s now 2-2, and the retreated MI has to face Aristides, who has blood in his eye. The phalanx inflicts two hits and two retreats. To cap off the damage, the Greek bows inflict a hit and a retreat on the auxilia. The Greeks draw Rally while the Persians get Counter Attack.
Mardonius moves to attack the lone Greek aux with another 3l card. The Persian auxilia leads the way, inflicting two hits taking one in return. Mardonius and the MC follow up hoping to kill, but only trade blocks. A Double Time is drawn. Who’s right flank will crumble first?
Sensing an opportunity due to the stand of the auxilia, which pins Mardonius, the Greeks play their 3c card. Pausinius rushes to join the MI, and the LI moves off the hill to ranged attack someone. The MC is dragged down by three SWD hits, and Mardonius does not survive, as the casualty check results in a Ldr symbol. It’s 4-2 Greece now, and Dame Fortune has turned in Greece’s favor. Following on, the auxilia takes two hits and a retreat. The LI, to cap it off, causes the now unsupported Persian MI to reel back a hex in dismay as they watch their leader fall to Pausinius.
The Persians Double Time the one block auxilia out of harm’s way. The Persian Mi fails to eliminate the Greek auxilia, who are busy composing letters home comparing their stand against Mardonius to Leonidas and the 300. They do put down the quills long enough to retreat a hex however. The Greek LI evades a Persian auxila’s thrust in the center. 2L is drawn.
The Greeks order 4L, with two shots at finishing up the game. Aristides charges the 3 block Persian aux, while Andromachus attacks the pinned LC on the hill. A Swd and a banner result give the Greeks a 5-2 win, without Aristides even having to attack.
Rating – I’d give Platea a rating of 7.5 out of 10. The Persians are outnumbered in HI, but they have enough command cards to have a fighting chance. In fact, if that lone auxilia hadn’t stood its ground, things would have looked very different. Ah well, such are the fortunes of war.