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Historicon 2018 Results and AAR
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scott holder
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 18, 2018 12:22 pm    Post subject: Historicon 2018 Results and AAR

First an announcement: if you want to post a detailed battle report of your games from Hcon, please do so in the Battle Reports section.

NICT

1) Rob Turnball, Alexandrian Imperial, 59.3
2) Sean-Patrick Scott, Italian Condotta, 54.6
3) Greg Hauser, Timurid, 51
4) Todd Kaeser, Christian Nubian, 50.6
5) Jake Kovel, Early Vietnamese, 40.4
6) Scott McDonald, Moldavian, 38.9
7) Ewan McNay, Romano-British, 38
8) Rich Kroupa, Kushan, 34.3
9) Jevon Garrett, Early Zulu, 30.7
10) Dan Woyke, Vijay Indian, 28.8
11) Fred Stratton, Neo-Assyrian Empire, 28.2
12) Frank Gilson, Ghaznavid, 27.5
13) Matt Kollmer, HYWE, 25.4
14) Mark Stone, Italian Condotta, 22.1
15) Bill Low, Mithradatic, 18.5
16) Chris Novak, Later Teutonic Knights, 14.2


Dogs of War Theme

1) Ewan McNay, Sassanid Persian, 23.5
2) Rob Turnball, Later Carthaginian, 19.9
3) Sean-Patrick Scott, Communal Italian, 18.3
4) Don Carter, Early Armenian, 15.2
5) Frank Gilson, Aztec, 14.7
6) Greg Hauser, Bahami Sultanate, 13.6
7) Tom Barkus, Komnenan Byzantine, 12.1
8) Mike Kelly, Early Armenian, 11.1
9) Bill Low, Sub-Roman British, 9.9
10) Jim Bisigani, Nikephorian Byzantine, 9.7
11) Chris Novak, Later Teutonic Knights, 9.5
12) Rich Kroupa, Khmer, 8.5
13) Dan Woyke, Colonial Spanish, 6
14) Tim Brown, LIR, 4.2
15) Scott McDonald, Nikephorian Byzantine, 4
16) Scott Holder, LIR, 3.5

Greg Hauser will be painting a “something” for the NICT winner, Rob Turnball
Sponsor: NASAMW and Silver Eagle
Best Camp: Matt Kollmer (HYWE)

Sportsman: Rich Kroupa
Sportsman Nominees: Tom Barkus, Bill Low, Matt Kollmer

I had a helluva trip to Lancaster. Normally I leave mid-morning straight from work and drive to exciting Huber Heights OH (think Dayton). I spend the night there, then finish the trip the next day. 20 miles north of town, one of my almost-new Michelins went flat. That’s the second flat since March when I bought em. In the previous 20 years, I had 2 flats. Fortunately I have an “extra” warranty (based on the first flat) that allowed me to call roadside assistance because I couldn’t get 2 of the damned lug nuts off. The first tow company was 10 minutes away geographically but gave me an ETA of 45 minutes. I then called the tire shop, yelled about my high end Michelins being crap and that I’d be coming back to drop of the car for a week so they could replace the tire. I was ready to get a rental to get back east when the tire guy said that they could get a replacement from the warehouse in Columbia but that it would take an hour. I said go for it and then waited…and waited. After 45 minutes I call the dispatch number only to get a text while I’m on the phone saying *another* tow company would now be assisting me and that their ETA was, you guessed it, 45 minutes. Luckily they called in about 5 and said they were 15 minutes out.

Damned 2 lug nuts and my emergency spare installed later, I’m heading back to the tire shop…where they were still waiting for the tire. I spent another hour and a half there. All in all I was 4 hours late getting on the road.

Next morning in the lobby, the Huber Heights cops came in an arrested a guy. Apparently he locked a buddy out of a room and wouldn’t let him back in. The buddy called the cops and whatever story he told them got em there quickly. The desk clerk was very apologetic. Typical morning at a Days Inn along the interstate.

Later that day, I’m on the PA Turnpike barreling along in a knot of cars being hung up by a semi in the left lane driving 0.000002 mph faster than the truck he’s trying to pass, thus causing a big clog. The vehicle in front of me, a big-assed pickemup truck, kicked up a rock, not gravel, not a small stone, a rock the size of my fist. It hit the passenger side of the windshield. I’ve got an impact point and several concentric circles on the windshield now.

Then I encountered a millennial who considered it her god given right to drive in the left lane, never getting over, all the while yacking and texting on the phone. She was so bad, a PA state trooper came up doing at least 90 mph with lights on. She. Wouldn’t. Get. Over. He was going up the turnpike (as it turns out) responding to an accident on the other side. Otherwise I would hope he would have hauled her ass over. And she wasn’t alone. I get that certain areas have certain driving predilections that make one want to purchase rocket launchers and use them. The whole “driving in the left lane come hell or high water” thing is endemic in the MD/VA area but I encountered maybe half a dozen of them cross country this time and EVERY DAMMNED TIME the culprit was a millennial on a damned cell phone either talking or texting, all the while not passing anybody. These kids not only need to get off my lawn but GET OFF MY HIGHWAYS!!!!! Or at least get in the right lane.

The drive home was far more uneventful. I decided not to slog all the way home in one day. I stayed in Terre Haute Sunday night after a 9 hour, 650 mile drive. They have a nice brewpub about 5 minutes from the hotel so all was good. I then drove 4 hours straight into the office Monday morning and for once didn’t feel like the walking dead after what a 13 hour drive on Sunday would have resulted in.

Where was I?

Me and Rich got together Wed night for our “how to we play this game?” game this time with Sean-Patrick running a sub-general for Rich. He was running Khmer and I was running my LIR Theme list from two Hcon’s ago. It wasn’t a bad matchup. I think we all thought I was going to win but then one rout in the middle of my line and the hordes of Ds all shook. The game took maybe 3 hours but was “over” in about 1 minute. A classic Dogs matchup. But it did shake off some of the rust.

Going back to the Host meant we had folks like Mark C and Jim B attend. However, we lost the entire Deep South contingent. It was originally supposed to be 4 but then Steve R bailed (didn’t say why), then Rick P bailed (car repairs blew a hole in the budget). As a result, Jamie and Derek decided not to drive up. Wimps. The result was like last year, we had 18 players counting me. Mark C said he wasn’t going to play on Saturday so that made things easy on Thursday: everybody else stayed in the mix while he and I “bailed”.

I’ve grown to like this “no mandatory cut” approach in that if pairs of people want to not play in let’s say the 3 round on Saturday, they can while it provides some interesting movement in the rest of the field. Both Frank and Fred were paired in Round 3, both agreed to a 1-1 game while getting ready to set out figures as both were wiped. During the day, however, there was plenty of jostling and after 3 rounds I still had 6 people in double digits of base points. That narrowed considerably after the 4th round when Rob beat Jake 5-2 and Greg beat Todd 5-2 setting up a Rob-Greg final of sorts. One of them would need a 4 or 5 point win to seal it unlike how things shook out last year. One did, Rob winning 4-1 and thus winning the NICT for the 3rd time (I think it’s 3).

Kudos to Ewan for bringing Romano-Brits to the NICT. However, I’m taking all those kudos away for him bringing the always predictably skeezy Sassanids to the Dogs theme. There’s a part of me that wants to mandate next year that anybody who has won the NICT can’t bring any army they’ve used to win it. Hmmmmmmmmm.

Like the last 4 years, NICT game tables were open on Thu, very, very cluttered on Saturday. Frank, who is no fan of cluttered tables, did have a good suggestion: instead of dumping so many woods, I should mix things up with more bogs, marshes, etc. At least I didn’t put out a hedged road. I will next year. Another suggestion was to clutter on Thursday, keep it open on Saturday. I’ll have to mull that over but I’m not inclined to go there. The game has enough “openness” to it in general and I know clutter gets people out of their comfort zone and has people looking at different lists in anticipation of the Saturday boards.

Another thing that worked in terms of the format was Saturday for players who either couldn’t or didn’t want to play on Thursday. I knew I had 4 players lined up for Saturday and originally pitched to them a nice, low key, 3 round, round robin Open. But Don indicated he’d only be able to play in the first 2 rounds so I asked everybody if they would prefer to get in 2 pickup games and they could schedule them as they wished. The 4 players loved this idea because Tom didn’t want to play a third game either. The important thing was all 4 players got in as many games as they wanted on Saturday.

Mark C and I played an actual Fast Warrior game Saturday evening (after he was done with ADLG) with his and mine’s combined modifications to the rules. He ran Mountain Indian and I ran units from my Dogs LIR unit. We had a blast, so much so that expect a Fast Warrior tourney in lieu of something else at one of the shows next year. I’m toying with the idea of doing 4 rounds of it instead of the Mini at Cold Wars but we’ll see. I’ll have more on that in a separate post.

Look who had a good weekend: Sean-Patrick Scott. He did it with his always-there Italian Condotta but placing 3rd in the Dogs with Communal Italian is impressive. Look who had a craptastic weekend: me; well, craptastic in the won/lost department. Otherwise it was a great weekend. I lost both my NICT games despite having one shot in each to blow things open. For example, my one shot routed something on the left-center of Mark S’s line in Game 2. He then sublimely passed 6(!) resulting waver tests. That’s typical of my ad-hoc playing style. If I don’t “win” that one shot, the rest of the game is a slow, grinding death march. The Dogs theme was kinda that way in the first two games but I’ve never had 3 successive games with not just mediocre dice but abysmal. I’m not one to typically get hung up on the randomness of dice, it happens. But when the Eeyore of Dice, that would be Tom Barkus, remarks that you’re out rolling him in the sucky dice department, you know something’s bad. I didn’t have bad matchups with Jim in Game 2 but my only point came from his 2E flank marching LC unit that never showed up. Against Tom, I setup things far more consistently over the course of the game but every damned time I’d roll down 3. I think the last time I finished last in an ancients tournament was in 5th Edition. And that was with Scott McD and Tim Brown (Timmeh came back for the Dogs tourney!) not playing the 3rd round because Tim wasn’t feeling all that great and Scott was tired considering 3 weeks ago he had quadruple bypass surgery.

Todd ably umped the theme and setup the tables and did a great job all around. Next year, it’s Teutonic Knights! Rich is gonna make at least 1 snow board and yes, we will have a frozen lake terrain feature.

Rules wise it wasn’t bad. Frank documented a couple of things: the meaning of “ranks” (this is related to support shooting by evading mounted) and not allowing a body to counter to 240p *and* shoot (Ewan tried that one).

I almost didn’t hand out a Best Camp award as I don’t do them for camps that have previously won. But then I noted Matt’s HYWE camp. Nicely done with a nice thematic element to it.

I still have to prod/remind people about Sportsman nominations. Everybody seems to forget about it on Thursday but slowly it builds on Friday and Saturday. This year Rick got 3 nominations, Tom Barkus 2 and Bill Low and Matt Kollmer 1 each.

Silver Eagle kicked in a bit for prize certificates while NASAMW provided a dice tower to the NICT winner. Greg H, like he does every year, paints either a camp or 2E of troops to the NICT winner. I think getting a Greg-painted camp is a no-brainer choice.

The post-tourney “hang” at Tru is always nice. I didn’t go Friday because I’m in this self-imposed ultramarathon training regimen despite having no specific race I’m training for. That meant running 15 miles Saturday morning. But Thu was nice and we had a big turnout Saturday.

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Ewan McNay
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 18, 2018 5:27 pm    Post subject:

Heck, just impose a handicap a la the Theme armies. Every time you win the NICT you get 40(?), 80, 120... fewer points from then on.

ARTHUR was fun against elephants, really tough against knights. Having said that, he won the three games that got into significant contact (largely thanks to Saxon allies), all 5-point wins; and 'won' the other two games 2-1 and 1-1 when neither side was able to push to conclusion. Those were against Frank and Mark, two of our game's more thoughtful players. In the first, it could have been over very quickly: a big El unit failed waver from shooting on bound 1 but passed for being charged, passed for disorder, and then unshook itself with the integral general... Oh well. That combat put a big roadblock in the middle of the game. Against Mark, I was a little more cautious - ARTHUR has zero units that can fight SHK! - and a central wood again slowed things; he deployed a unit of SHI in the wood that I did not initially believe (!) but that Comitatus were happy to go play with; first contact the SHI roll +3 to repel me, but second time around they rout. Alas they're in a wood and the game is over. I took it as a minor victory that I did not have to fight SHK, but the actual score is 2-1.
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 18, 2018 6:51 pm    Post subject:

I like my idea better. But it's just an idea at this point.

What I'd like to do along those lines is at least document who won with what in any given year since the publication of Warrior (7th Ed wins don't matter in this case).

I can document NICT wins back to 2005 on the Forum but haven't plowed thru the search engine to see what else I can dredge up. It would be far easier for Rob to look em up on the trophy...assuming he's not fishing somewhere in Maine and pulls the thing out of it's box o' foam peanuts.

Another thought would be to take my approach but also your suggestion. Say if you want to play Alex Imp or Sassanids in the NICT, you do so at some significant penalty (heh heh, I like 120pts as a *start*). If not, take any other army.

Heh heh, I got so much other stuff on my plate right now, this can wait.

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2018 12:17 am    Post subject:

I really want to see Ewan's romano list.
I think I will run it at the Council. As you all know I have a liking for Arturos.
EK
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2018 3:50 pm    Post subject:

I hope to get the pictures up shortly (next few weeks) and I will put in an AAR for my Nubian Christians as well.

Todd

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2018 2:33 pm    Post subject:

Theme Pictures are up on the Album section

Todd

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2018 3:06 pm    Post subject: images tiny?

Todd Kaeser wrote:
Theme Pictures are up on the Album section

Todd


I don't seem to be able to view large versions, somehow...can you? anybody else?
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2018 4:16 pm    Post subject:

I can't either - I will try to fix.

Worried that I can't delete all that I put on and replace....

Todd

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2018 5:45 pm    Post subject:

Ok - learned my mistake - that being said is there a way to make me an admin to erase those images I've messed up and begin again?

Todd

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2018 8:14 pm    Post subject: NICT post action review

So a very fun (but lucky) NICT this year, and five good opponents, any one of which I could easily have lost to:
Firstly my list - I used Alexandrian imperial instead of my previous seluicid for a number of key reasons - I love companions, and think Elephants are a very powerful force in the game, and if I took the Indian ally I could firld a powerful Elephant component, I also love Reg B light cavalry, and the support troops (pike, Hypaspists and peltasts are very sound) - Like every game the goal is to fight your best against their worst - and hopefully the dice gods like you.
Round 1: Dan Woijke - running an Indian list with lots of good elephants, and some good cavalry and lots of bow - which is a tough match up. I don't remember much of the game except that I believe my elephants rolled better than his - 4Z:1 to me - but could easily have gone the other way.
Round2:
Fred Stratton with the assyrians - My memory is that pike and elephants combined rolled over his infantry - he had a charge of EHC against my peltasts in the open - looking for a waver test - I passed and routed him and rolled him up from that flank - 5:1
Round 3:
Todd Kaeser - Nubian Christian - I really like the list and the way he runs it - I out cavalried him dramatically an dit did not matter - I attacked in the center, and not having paid attention to his list attacked his pear block with pike - on even rolls he disorders me (they haddart - woops) but he rolls down and I slowly crush his center with pike, elephants and peltasts - while he rolls up and kills a pike unit that should have been fine - in the end I just slowly rolled over his army - 5:1 but 2 different dice rolls and some failed waver tests and Todd wins this - very lucky
Round 4 - Jake Kovel - Viatnamese - some lephenats lots of barbarian foot and Irr A - Jakes li gets in his IRR A way - and I keep it that way - but the game really turns when a companion cavalry unit routs a Irr A unit - they rolled down - I rolled up and I just whittled his army down, including routing a lmi unit in the woods with light cavalry - and eventually forcing that command into retreat, my peltasts also killed a 36 man lmi unit after about 6 rounds of grind on that flank- much to Jakes disgust - 5:1
Round 5: Greg Hauser using Timurid - with elephants and artillery - Greg has been my bugbear the last few years with artillery and elephants and he had thos and more - the game really fell apart for Greg on the second turn when I charged a LC unit with Peltasts and he rolled short, and with the geometry I routed them, from there on I kept up teh pressure and Greg could never get back on a good footing. After a very good attempt he finally ran out of steam - and I destroyed much of the center of his army, while losing one peltast unit %:1 and the championship as I remember it - every game has some (or a lot of luck) and every game I felt I played better except the last where we were both pretty nervous, but Greg made the first mistake . Loved the hanging out after each day, and seeing friends who unfortunately are too far away to see more than once or twice a year. Thanks all
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2018 12:43 pm    Post subject: Thanks!

Thank you, Rob, for your NCT AAR. I do agree that Alexandrian Imperial with the Indian option is very solid. If you're not interested in Scythed Chariots, might as well get the generally better supporting troops of Imperial.

I played Ghaznavid in the NCT...with the near-max scouting point option, meaning I had 4 units of 6E LC.

Opponent 1 was Mark Stone, with knight-heavy Italian Condotta...not a matchup he wanted. Fine for me. Basically his knights didn't go long and catch LC or skirmishing HC in the few opportunities he had. A woods slowed things down for both of us...and eventually I disordered some of his LC with an elephant unit and shot it up, causing waver...failure...charge...elephants go long and catch the LC, routed, more wavers, some failures. 5 - 1 for me. Not a lot Mark can do here if I don't make significant mistakes.

Opponent 2 was Ewan McNay with Romano-British...ugh...on a table with a big woods in the center that slowed everything down (sound familiar)...and a Ditched Palisade against one of his flanks. Ewan's certainly not making significant mistakes here...I tried not to. He got a big plus die roll with long range shooting against an elephant with a general and I had to take the waver, failed...his LI charged...I passed that waver...eventually this general unshook through a won combat. I have little I can do with my army against Ewan other than try to concentrate some Dailami shooting and see if I can cause a failed waver by sending in elephants against loose foot in the open. Ewan doesn't provide many opportunities...My dice are generally cold, his are fine...so, 2 - 1 for Ewan here as I have some bad combats, shooting, and a couple of shakes near the end and he doesn't.

6 points...middle of the pack...not terrible. Would rather have faced any other 5 with their armies than Ewan, not a great matchup for me particularly given the...WOODS.

Day 2 begins and I see...wow...a TON of Woods and other terrain. I guess I brought the wrong configuration, even if the scouting points were helping me choose table side and deploy after my opponent...I needed some Irr LMI or whatnot, not all the LC.

Round 3 is against Dan Woyke running Vijayanagara. We 'dance' around...a couple of WOODS slow us down and are a problem for me. Eventually we get fresh elephants into fresh elephants, generals involved, including Dan's CinC...but...nobody gets a die roll blowout...so 1 - 1 there for us, we're toast for NCT competition. Dan was conservative as his shieldless LMI and his lancers don't match up well against my elephants or Dailami. I also had a steep hill lip that caused problems for me, sigh...needed a big LMI unit to put in my right flank woods.

Round 4 I face Jevon...which is great as we go way back and I've admired his take on armies like Japanese. I see him on Zulu! His LI are deployed to slow me down...along with a couple of WOODS and a steep-ish hill, oh, and a key Brush. So...I can only push along a narrow alley while otherwise turning Elephants completely around and retiring them, then marching them off. I have a LC flank march that...gets chased off the table. My victory comes largely on the basis of sending an Elephant unit into a Reg C LMI HTW,JLS,Sh unit...which passes waver, but I start grinding it down pushing it back, causing more wavers...and sending in another elephant unit. I do rout it, causing some wavers...Jevon fails 1 or 2. I earn a 4 point victory against his 1 point.

I'm exhausted at this point...and my round 5 opponent, Fred Stratton on Neo-Assyrian, is also...I see Oases (woods if you have no camels) and sand dunes on our battlefield...sigh...hey, Fred, care not to play? Let's just take a 1 - 1 draw. OK...

Alright...so...difficult terrain, particularly woods, was a huge problem for me in literally every battle. Even game 1, my 5 pointer against Mark, was 5 points at the last...the woods being something I couldn't push beyond and a haven for his LMI.

Wouldn't have thought to take the Irr C LMI JLS,Sh (Afghan Spearmen)...should have had a 9E unit at 106 points...and not all the LC.
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:36 pm    Post subject:

With thoughts on terrain:

I like how Scott does it. Day 1 - generally open type terrain (better for cavalry armies and such). Day 2 - more dense boards with rough terrain.

It forces you to take armies that can do both. If the boards were just like Day 1 then people would take armies heavy on LC as they would be at a disadvantage. Pike armies, Zulu, Japanese, etc... struggle on open boards. One has to take an army configuration that can do both or at least compete in both types of fields. That is why I felt I could take my Nubians - they struggle a little on Day 1 as I don't have enough cavalry/lights to hold all that open, BUT they do have enough shooting to hold all that at bay (the stone wall also helps a little). On Day 2 Nubians have enough Reg LMI with shooting to navigate all that terrain. I did have a relatively open board vs. Greg's Timurid and it was a challenge trying to not get enveloped. Why I did that pretty well I played my middle so poorly and Greg played his well and he rolled me there.

Todd

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:57 pm    Post subject:

Todd Kaeser wrote:
With thoughts on terrain:

I like how Scott does it. Day 1 - generally open type terrain (better for cavalry armies and such). Day 2 - more dense boards with rough terrain.

It forces you to take armies that can do both. If the boards were just like Day 1 then people would take armies heavy on LC as they would be at a disadvantage. Pike armies, Zulu, Japanese, etc... struggle on open boards. One has to take an army configuration that can do both or at least compete in both types of fields. That is why I felt I could take my Nubians - they struggle a little on Day 1 as I don't have enough cavalry/lights to hold all that open, BUT they do have enough shooting to hold all that at bay (the stone wall also helps a little). On Day 2 Nubians have enough Reg LMI with shooting to navigate all that terrain. I did have a relatively open board vs. Greg's Timurid and it was a challenge trying to not get enveloped. Why I did that pretty well I played my middle so poorly and Greg played his well and he rolled me there.

Todd


I'm fine with all that...I basically made a mistake of army composition with regard to what I should have known would happen.

That said, however, there are certain effects of terrain during gameplay that serve to restrict or slow battles such that they are less likely to reach their conclusions...AND Woods in particular is a horrible feature to have a lot of, because:

You can't see through Woods, or into it...this allows anything to be in ambush and requires that a Woods be treated very carefully...slowdown.

Woods doesn't permit the use of L, 2HCT, Pike or LTS, weapons many of the best troops we commonly take have...so you have to have something with JLS, basically...(2HCW can be useful, but mainly in combination with JLS).

So...we should use less Woods and Woods-like terrain pieces, particularly in table Central Sectors in favor of things like...Marsh...I think LI can hide in that, but nothing else AND you can use all your weapons.

Finally, a word on Hills...we have hills we use that are partly steep and partly open...which is a touch messy, particularly if the orientation of the steep section is in between opponents.

In any event, a Central sector hill slows battles down because almost nothing can fight UP a hill into anything reasonable and coming down a hill is also an advantage, so if you face a central hill you are often forced into a defensive or at least cautious posture.

Thus, I'd like to see far fewer Woods (or woods-like terrains that similarly block vision), more Marsh (or similar), or Rough (Brush, rocky ground)...and fewer Hills centrally located, and heck...use one or two Steep all over hills in a flank now and then.

Frank
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2018 7:18 pm    Post subject: Yeah for woods!

I'm painting my third and fourth unit of armoured auxilia thanks to a recent sale at Black Tree Design. Woods in the center of the table are like a highway to run down and fight your opponent. All depends on what you buy, RB LHI JLS D Sh are woods superiority troops and I'm happy to field lots of them.
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2018 7:47 pm    Post subject: NICT post action review

They are deadly in woods - and really brush except against knights - but there are other answers for those - its all cost and utility - but with no woods troops life gets very hard. The Rock Paper Scissor world continues - I like auxilia, Skuts, good cav and some varangians - very tough army - but it has its issues as well
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