09 July 2015

Summary fron the Swedish BF&S tournament in Lund 2015

Last weekend my buddy Andreas "Deathbullar" arranged a By Fire & Sword tournament in what turned out to be the warmest weekend so far this year. Actually the heat was unbearable and the the rooms turned into an oven but somehow we managed to play 5 games spread out between 2 days.

We had 10 contestants, originally a couple more but people either dropped out or simply did not respond after having clicked the "attending" button. Hopefully the turnout will be greater next time around, and the temperature some 10-15 Celsius lower.

Anyway, due to the heat I was exhausted for most parts of the tournament - sadly I did not manage to walk around and snap photos of other peoples armies and games - I hope those will be posted somewhere and a few of those pictures are already up on the Wargamer.pl/By Fire & Sword facebook group. What follows below is a short summary of my 5 battles.

I played the identical Lithuanian army lists that I brought to the Polish championship in Warsaw. This was mainly because I had a hard time deciding what army/nation to play and ended up with the lists that I played in Poland.

Lithuania 1655-61
39 Recon points

On their own ground, Swimming, Left hand division Right hand division

Colonel 3 Command points
Rotamaster 1 command point
6 bases of armored Reiters
6 bases of Reiters
12 bases of Cossack style cavalry
10 bases of Volunteers
2 bases of Dragoons

Lithuania 1655-61
16 Recon points

On their own ground, Swimming, Left hand division Right hand division

Colonel  3 command points
3 bases of armored Reiters
3 bases of  Reiters
5 bases of Cossack style cavalry
2 bases of Dragoons
Lithuania 1662-67
21 Recon points

On their own ground, Swimming

3 bases of armored Reiters
4 bases of Elite Reiters
9 bases of Cossack style cavalry
2 bases of Dragoons


I had pretty much the same experience as during the Polish championship. The 9FSP list simply lacked the punch and was very expensive to field, it did not do well and I only played it once. The small 5FSP list would be good if not for the Left Hand/Right Hand division special rule. I realized that such a tiny force cannot afford to suffer that effect.

A majority (3) games were played with the large 13 point list and it worked out average this tournament.  I had some bad Left Hand/Right hand division experiences, among others a 6 base squadron of cossack style cavalry left without orders and insubordinate for an entire game.

Having given things a thought I realize that I have a difficult time building "good" lists. With good lists I mean point effective lists that have good troops without being bloated in size and points. I need to experiment more with "uncomfortable" and cheaper builds and not try to max out all companies and squadrons.

But enough of my rambling, here is the short summary of each of my 5 games and pictures from those battles.

Battle 1
Lithuania 9FSP vs Fredrik and his Swedes
Scenario: Patrol

Fredrik is a relatively new player but surprised me with very good gameplay during our battle. I was quite weary of his artillery and the insane gunline he could muster. Unfortunate turn of events and recklessness resulted in my cossack style cavalry being flank charged by Reiters on the right flank of the table. Fortunately I rolled a 1 which meant that they were just pushed and in the following close combat sequence they repulsed their attackers. The following turn my cavalry unit attacked the Reiters but it was Fredrik's turn to roll a 1 on his morale test and despite having lost the fight he just backed away. Then I was attacked again this time by both his Reiter units and my cavalry routed. We both managed to scout the 3 landmarks but I had taken more losses so the battle ended a Tactical defeat on my part while Fredrik had a Tactical victory

My score:
Big Points 2
Small Points 7

Battle 2
Lithuania 13FSP vs Patrius and his Lithuanians
Scenario: Delay the enemy

This battle would prove tricky as my opponent, Patryk from Stockholm, had pretty much the same kind of troops as I had. I decided to send a full squadron of cossack style cavalry as a flanking maneuver and that way get around my opponents back and off the rear end of the table. But as the battle began Patryk blocked both flanks with units, preventing entry for my off table cavalry.

The fight for the southern hill also dragged on far too long and my force was indeed delayed by the threat of flanking units (mainly on the right flank). I played too cautiously with the troops on the table but the disaster did not occur until around turn 5 when my dice rolls turned abysmal and my troops evaporated as casualties or being routed. The nail in the coffin was that my flanking unit did not arrive until turn 6 when it was too late to do anything, and them being blocked from marching by the remnants of  an enemy unit at the far end of the table....

I only managed to seize on of the hills while my opponent held the rear hill and had prevented me from exiting troops along his table edge. The fight ended as another Tactical defeat on my part.

My score:
Big Points 2
Small Points 2

Battle 3
Lithuania 13 FSP vs Johanem and his Muscovites
Scenario: Defend the crossing

Johan and I are familiar opponents as we have played a lot at the club against each other. My large cavalry list was to force its way across the narrow brigde held by a defensive formation of Muscovite infantry and artillery. I had several favorable effects to aid me - but due to mental exhaustion from the heat I forget 2 out of 3 (among them a flanking maneuver where instead I deployed everything on the table!!)...

This being the last battle of Day 1 I was quite tired and warm. I decided to not think too much and just hurl everything at Johan's infantry position. It took two turns before that position began to fall apart, and panicking Muscovites began their flight. Despite the favorable situation of having caused complete chaos near the bridge the amount of Muscovite casualties was too low to grant me a lot of points. I did however manage to capture the bridge and cross the river where fighting continued so I got points for having troops across the river and for the bridge. Johan held the ford. 

The battle ended a Strategic victory for me and a Strategic defeat for Johan.

My score:
Big points 5
Small points 7

Battle 4
Lithuania 13FSP vs AvonD and his Swedes

Scenario: Defend the village

In this battle I got to play one of our visiting gamers from Gothenburg, Andreas B.

Andreas occupied the village with almost all his troops, artillery and the major along with two companies of dragoons held the buildings. While I was to attack them with my force. I outnumbered the defenders, but most of my army was in disarray from the start, most importantly the second 6-base squadron of cossack style cavalry was insubordinate and lost its order. Due to the constant need for command points to cover situations each turn those cossacks never received an order and were just sitting and watching the battle for the remainder of the game. This became a handicap, but not as much as the inept left flank in my battle line which was led by the Rotamaster alone and who was unable to do much with insubordinate and easily panicked Volunteers and a squadron of Reiters.

The Reiters on the left flank attempted to engage the enemy several times but were forced to flee after having taken severe losses. At the same time I had great problems killing  the dragoons in the building flanked by the light artillery piece which killed lots of my armoured Reiters. My second cossack style squadron was fighting Swedish reiters and had some success as the unit was routed and only then with a combined effort I managed to wipe out the tiny but incredibly tough resistance in the southern part of the village and burn the supplies in the center. But I had too few troops to claim the main building and as such the Swedes held the village by the end of the battle. I had also taken a lot of casualties and lots of troops had fled which impacted badly on my score. No luck in this tournament for my army. Still this battle along with the first battle during day 1 were probably the closest and most even fights I had during the tournament.

The fight ended as yet another Tactical defeat for me.
My score:
Big points 2
Small points 2

Battle 5

Lithuania 5FSP vs Johanem and his Muscovites
Scenario: Forage

Johan had complained how  difficult this scenario is as the attacker so I wanted to try it out for myself as I for once had a smaller force than him.
The problem was that with such a small force I was badly punished by the Left Hand/Right hand division rule. And even though I fully concentrated on the right flank I had a crucial unit become delayed in its advance and support of my attack. Several times did I attack the Muscovite reiters but my troops were slowly losing bases and Johan made some good morale test saves that kept him near the objective marker. The second half of the Muscovite force made steady pace towards the fight and in the end I had severely weakened troops and then became outnumbered in a bad spot.

Johan won a solid Strategic Victory here, I am sure that things would have been better off if I had not suffered the Right Hand/Left hand division penalty at the start of the battle. That also prompted me to pick a different list for the "Small skirmish" force.

My score:
Big points 1
Small points 0


Final tournament score 12 Big Points and 18 Small points.

The tournament was great fun and it was nice to play new opponents, though I wish the temperature would have been cooler as I have already written the heat was almost unbearable.

Robin ended up winning the tournament for the second year in a row, expanding his wardrobe with a new T-shirt from Wargamer.pl, receiving a nice statue and the top 3 players received additional prizes in gift cards and other things.

I was comforted with being awarded "best painted" so that was a nice surprise and eased the wounded confidence from my bad playing and luck quite a bit.

Bonus picture of Fredrik's dog with Orc teeth

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