08 October 2010

Cartography - Fantasy Campaign Map

In July 2002 I tried setting up a fantasy campaign and like a good many campaigns this one was still born, but I did complete the map, for a closer look and explanation about the map follow this link.

But it wasn't a total loss as Beth gave me 'Theatre Of War' a Piquet campaign supplement as a Christmas present and eager to try it out we dug out the map and set a small campaign in the bottom left hand corner of the map, Beth using her Dwarves and myself, my Elves.

We printed out a copy of the map and made counters to represent our respective forces on the map and began our campaign. The Dwarves attacked a Elvish town (named 'Settlement 20' on the map) and after generating the terrain for the battle my elves found their battlefield dominated by an enormous forest immediately their front. This forest extended across two thirds of the field but stopped short of the Dwarven army. Yes the Dwarves could advance across the field unseen, right up to the elvish troops. Rather than wait for the Dwarves to appear I pushed the Elves forward as fast as I could, using my pool of morale chips to buy down Beth's initiative to hold her Dwarves in place. This was a risk because in Piquet running out of morale chips is a disaster and I was using a lot of them but I had to get the Elves through the forest, if the Dwarves got moving and managed to meet the Elves as they emerged things wouldn't be pretty.

At the cost of a large portion of my morale chips the Elves won their race with the Dwarves free of the forest  launched into a desperate attack upon the Dwarven battle line, the Elves washed over the Dwarves like a angry wave smashing units along the line. But the dash through the forest had cost the Elven army dearly and the combat was further depleting the remaining army morale chips, eventually I had no choice but to have the Elves break off. The morale chips were gone and now very bad things were about to happen to the army, but I was then amazed to find out just how relieved Beth was. The Dwarven army had taken some serious damage and had been hurt by the Elvish attack, she had just been about to surrender the field and withdraw but I gave up only moments before she was about to make the same decision.

Now we were eager to see how the outcome of the battle effected the campaign, I knew it was not going very good in my case, I had suffered what is in technical terms known as a 'Crushing Defeat' and the Elves indeed had been crushed, right down to a fine powder. This translated into having the surviving troops flee north, taking the other nearby armies with them. The Elvish kingdom's will to fight was lost and emissaries were sent to the Dwarven halls to sue for peace, my elvish army's headlong charge and desperate gamble had cost me the campaign, finishing it on the same turn that it had begun.

But that was still the best wargame I have probably ever played.