Editors Note: This is the second of a series of battles (the first is yet to be documented).
After last week’s first game of Pike and Shotte, the British and Irish forces consolidate their position and wait for night to roll in. In the morning the mist clears across the battlefield revealing the dead, the dying, and the lucky survivors from last week’s game. On the hill across from the Generals from both sides talk of peace until, from the distance, a faint drumming can be heard… and then the swirl of bagpipes!
The Scots have arrived to destroy both the English and Irish aggressors. Using their connections with France they have managed to train in pike formations, and under the command of veteran French officers are a force to be reckoned with. With the new threat closing in on both armies, an alliance is quickly formed between England and Ireland.
This game was played using John’s collection of miniatures, many of which were sculpted by the Perry Twins over 35 years ago. These beautifully painted figures make perfect 16th-century soldiers. John to his credit drilled out all the hands to change them to carry metal pikes (as many were armed with halberds originally).
Alister – Infantry Brigade 1
Alan – Infantry Brigade 2
Wojtek – Cavalry Brigade
Colin – Infantry Brigade 1
Pete – Infantry Brigade 2
Lorenzo & Steve
The Toy Master General John Stallard!
Battle is Joined
The Anglo-Irish army about-faced to receive the new threat with ease but that was the start of their troubles! The Scots opened with accurate cannon and musket fire on their left flank. As per usual in these battles, Wojtec decides to commit to a cavalry charge at the Scottish arquebusiers to the left of the line. The musketeers fail to evade via the safety of the pike block and are slaughtered mercilessly 2 minutes into the fight!
Lorenzo decides to charge Pete’s Gallowglass unit with pike but fail to reach them! This is then followed by Lorenzo giving two separate follow me orders to be met with Scottish tuts and mutters of ‘NOT ON YOUR LIFE MATE’ They go nowhere!
With the Scottish left flank pinned down by cavalry charges (thank you Colonel Wojtek), Alister’s Infantry brigade moved to take and hold the hill while Pete’s Gallowglass units and skirmishers move up to harass the enemy’s centre.
This then signalled Collin and his Kern Units to move up and put pressure on the right flank. To say this didn’t end up going particularly well would be an understatement. Alan’s Brigade moves to the right to support Colin but more on that later!
Colin, only lately returned from a hazardous behind enemy lines holiday to Scotland ( I know… the cheek of it… missing last weeks game as well!) must have left his common sense behind and decided to charge his brigades forward against the Scottish Cavalry.
At this point, the Anglo-Irish right flank turns into a mass of chaos, calls for the umpire and tuts from the Scottish players! John kindly stepped in to try and make sense of the carnage as 4 units of kern are destroyed completely with the rest disordered but still in position. At this point, we don’t know which brigade Colin’s units belong to. But what’s a couple of units between friends and we merge the remnants of Colin Irish force to ease gameplay.
Pete’s skirmishers are charged with pike and despite our house rule (if the standard-bearer for the Irish army is near a friendly unit they may reroll a morale check once per unit) they are wiped out by sharp pointy pikes!
At this point, we called halftime to refill our glasses and take on supplies very kindly laid out by John!
There’s nothing better than a wargame, friends, and a sausage sandwich!
The Scottish Cavalry under Sir Steve wheels and charges at the Gallowglass! This time the Gallowglass lose the melee and must take a morale check. After the first roll they are disordered and must retreat! Pete calls upon Reverend Doogle and the house rule and… The unit is destroyed and wiped off the table. Who said rerolls are the way forward? Pete’s facial reaction was the highlight of our night! Nothing like an angry Australian – (Sorry Pete).
At this point, Alan’s and Alister’s Brigades push forward to reinforce the centre and deny the enemy a chance to break out of the cordon. These units start to put down heavy and accurate musket fire into the Scottish ranks keeping them back!
Out of nowhere and most unlike him (NOT!) Wojtek again charges his cavalry across half the battlefield to slam into a pike block threatening the Anglo-Irish centre! This both surprised the Scottish commanders as well as the Anglo-Irish. That charge was met with calls of ‘Not again’ and ‘Geronimo!’ depending on which side you played.
With the civilian onlookers growing wary and of course, the sausage sandwiches running out, we called the last turn and tried to consolidate our positions again! The Anglo-Irish left was well guarded by cavalry, its centre held up by Pete’s remaining Gallowglass and Alister’s brigade on the left. Alan and bits of Colin were fending off more Scottish Cavalry Charges on the right flank but to their credit hadn’t conceded any ground.
Steve’s Mom (arbiter of all things Pike & Shotte) then rang to say that it was time to end the game – she promptly named the Anglo-Irish as the close victors of the battle. This was the first time John’s Scottish models had seen the table let alone a battle! and it was a pleasure to see and fight them! Everyone concluded proceedings by shaking hands but still making a point to amicably laugh at Colin’s annihilation and Pete’s terrible reroll!
A big thank you to John for hosting us! Steve for his rule checking and all the players for coming!