Thursday, June 3, 2010

Convention Report: Enfilade! 2010

This past weekend NHMGS (Northwest Historical Gaming Society) held its flagship convention Enfilade! 2010. Unlike previous years, where I attended the entire convention, I was only able to participate in one game.  I got off of work on Saturday and did a "fly-by."  That is, I stopped in, obtained my attendance card, wandered the gaming tables taking pictures, checked out what was for sale and chatted with friends.

The convention coordinators tried something new this year.  Those who pre-registered could sign up for one game during any period of the convention.  This cut down the length of the sign-up line that would form and snake around the playing areas prior to each period.  The convention planners intend to do the same next year.

Since I missed the first two days, I used my guaranteed slot to sign up for the  Sunday morning Warhammer Ancient Battles (WAB) refight of Heraclea, hosted by my friends Dean and Adrian.  Dean provided the Greek figures, while Adrian provided the Romans. 

My gaming partner, James and I, chose to play the Roman commanders, while Lawrence and his partner, (I didn't get his name), played the Greek generals.  Heraclea, fought in 280 BC, was the first confrontation between the Roman legion and the Greek phalanx:

Despite our attempts to avoid a head-to-head clash with the phalanxes, the outcome of our battle mirrored the historical result.  That is, the Romans were pushed back across the Siris River.  We also tried securing our own flanks with our cavalry.  My Roman cavalry on our left flank charged the Greek Companion Cavalry, resulting in both units being locked in melee for nearly the entire game.  Meanwhile on our right flank, the Roman allied cavalry had the devil's own time coming to grips with the Greek allied light cavalry.  The Greek horsemen dispersed and peppered the Roman horsemen with arrows for most of the game.

As if the Greek horsemen weren't bad enough, the Greeks had another critter, the Romans never saw before--an elephant.  Pachyderms were terrifying, yet temperamental and unpredictable beasts.  We tried wounding it, hoping the beast would go on a rampage against its own troops.  Unfortunately our plan backfired.  The elephant did go on a rampage, but cut a swath of terror and destruction through our own units.  This, along with mounting losses from Greek pikes, caused one Roman maniple after another to loose heart, and in a cascading effect, retreat across the river.

The game was a lot of fun and both sides had their tense moments.  Adrian, Dean and Dan (who was out of town during the convention) are part of the Puyallup Wargamers and can always be counted on to paint museum-quality figures and host highly enjoyable games.

Despite my short attendence, I took over 90 photos of various gaming events during my Saturday evening "walkabout."  For the Heraclea refight, I snapped over 220 pictures!  I just uploaded all the photos on to my laptop this morning and am going through the initial editing process.  Which is, using the computer to lighten each image, because with my current camera, a Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX01, it's best not to use a flash.

I'm currently working on an Age of Conan game report.  Once that's finished, I'll start work on movies for both Enfilade! 2010 and our WAB battle.  In the meantime, I'll post some sample pictures on the Puyallup Wargamers Yahoo Page as soon as I can.


DeanM said...


Ah, another excellent report. Well written as usual. And - holy cow! 220 pictures of just our game! I never would've imagined that - and you still general'd your side of the battlefield well - broke the Companion heavy cav. Your remaining cav and maniples would likely have slowly chopped away at the Epirote right flank. Thanks, Dean

Stern Rake Studio said...

Thanks for the compliments! I try to take pictures of every action and then put it together for a YouTube movie. Not quite stop-action, but close! :)