Using the To the Strongest rules Mike and Phil introduced Darryl to the To the Strongest Rules. Gondor against Mordor and the Southrons with Phil playing as Gondor. This was to be the first battle in our Harondor mini-campaign. Harondor a debatable and desert land.
First of all we set out the terrain using the rules. We thought we had placed quite a bit but when the cards were drawn almost all the terrain was removed so the armies faced across an open plain as the Sun rose in the harsh arid lands of South Harondor. The Prince of Ithilien hoped to force the enemy back as they headed up the old Harad Road North to Pelargir.
The battle began with the Gondor army advancing forwards rapidly to take the Middle ground. The Knights to the left flank, infantry centre and the Prince’s infantry and Guard cavalry to the right. The right flank infantry failed to advance. In response the Far Harad infantry advanced towards the Knights and the Trolls (Elephants) down the centre. The Harad cavalry opposite the Gondor right advanced and harried them with horse archers with little success.
On the Gondor left however events unfolded rapidly badly as the Javelinmen brought down Findegil the Commander and disordered his Knights. He was led from the field gravely wounded unlikely to ever be able to ride again. The Knights in disorder and without a commander would find it difficult to make much progress from now on.
In the centre the trolls struck the Large Units hard and heavily disordered them. They proved impossible to injure and the infantry struggled just to avoid destruction.
Eventually the Gondor Knights were slowly pushed back but continued to hold the left flank. In the centre one Troll was slain and rampaged towards the Marshall of Umbar with little effect. The others proved indestructible and the Gondor centre was buckling with a couple of units on 2 disorder. On the Gondor right flank the Prince had by now advanced his forces and was pushing the Harad cavalry back. The Serpent Guard lost a unit and the Black Serpent himself had to flee and join the second unit as the infantry pushed forwards. The Harad counterattack though was deadly and a whole large unit of infantry was destroyed. The Knights held their own and pushed back the skirmishing cavalry to the baseline but were disordered in the process.
At this point seeing that the day was lost and before his centre collapsed the Prince of Ithilien withdrew his forces and victory was awarded to the forces of Mordor and Harad. Well done Mike and Darryl.
The Trolls proved especially effective. This was helped when Phil drew an ace when trying to activate his division as they closed thus failing to shoot at a crucial moment. The deep units with extra bow proved very resistant but the extra bow was not so effective when compared with a separate unit of formed archers of course. The fact that they could never seem to hit a Troll and then when they did they always saved caused problems for Gondor. This was compounded by a bad start down the left flank with the early loss of their commander there.