Tuesday, November 12, 2019

27th October, Portsmouth

The English DBA Open 

Hosted at the splendid, though mostly off limits, Fort Cumberland in Portsmouth.  PAWS had to move their venue quite quickly, and, by associating with the veterans charity Forgotten Veterans, managed to find some space within this splendid military landmark.  I'll borrow an image from Google Satellite:

(click on the pictures for a better view)

What a place to play wargames!  I know the PAWS organisers would want me to recommend you to follow the link to the charity page and consider making a donation.  It would do some good.

(Fort Cumberland: the little Forgotten Veterans corner where PAWS now hosts its wargames)

(The English DBA Open gets under way)

I tried to keep my life simple and just use the latest army to come out of my reorganise/refurbish project.

(DBA III/65 Nikephorian Byzantine) 

The power of this army is in its archery ... protected by skoutatoi they fight as 8Bw and I elected to take some Varangians (4Bd) to stiffen them.  Even so, it is a risky sort of army as the first of those deep elements you lose counts as if 2 for Victory Points (and they don't get to count the protection of the skoutatoi in shooting exchanges - which I don't quite understand but it is what it is)

The rest of the army is basically cavalry.

See the Nikephorian Byzantine gallery.

My baptism of fire was against Serbs.

(The 2019 English Open: the Byzantines open their account)

It didn't go especially well.  I tried to match off against the auxilia and bows - which the Serbs were happy with, their 2 bow elements getting good shots in on my 4 (in DBA, bow vs bow ends up on quite low numbers so is very much subject to the vagueries of chance) and I rapidly lost a couple of bases to nil and was on the brink.

And so it went on through the tournament.

(enemies of the Nikephorians at the English Open 2019)

The only archers I was able to outshoot were the English longbowmen.  A win at last!

(Byzantines vs Medieval Spanish ... and ineptly trying to hold off a littoral landing)

But it was a glimmer of light on an otherwise under-achieving day.  Nice to play with, this version of the Byzantine military machine is handicapped by the double-based skoutatoi archers.  Too vulnerable in shoot-outs to be worth the extra on element count.  Unless you can consistently roll 4 or more in the distant combat.

So I didn't make it into the semis, and there was no plate competition this year (as the pool phase was running late and those that didn't need to stay were keen to get off) ...

The four semi-finalists got to play a knock-out for the title from a restricted set of armies providd by the organisers ...

(English DBA Open 2019 - knock-out options)

With no plate competition, and a long session in prospect, I didn't  stay til the end.  We had enough from the numbers to be able to present the League trophies and take some pictures.

Anyway, here's the DBA Open places ...

.. and for the League, that meant ...

... and Tamara Fordham retained her Junior title.

(Top players: the 2019 Society of Ancients UK DBA League)

Congratulations to Richard on a successful season.

There were 12 tournaments in this year's League, spread from Bakewell and Newark to Portsmouth and Penarth.  In all, over 70 players took part.  Congratulations to all of them.

The new League season kicks off in a couple of weeks in Tarrington.

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