Carthage 5

July 19: 250 BC to 248 BC: Three zero’s, a blonde and some treachery

Team Roma prepares for action in their fashionable game t-shirts

The site of most of the action this session

Back to the First Punic War and the brawl in Sicily   Cartha death star army had managed to enter the fray with 100 SPs. Prior to that, Carthage was down to one lonely city in Sicily. During 251 B.C., Rome was able to cut the beast in half, however the death star was still operational. Carthage had retaken the critical city of Lilybaeum – which controls Cartha’s access to Sicily…

250 B.C.

VP check

Rome: Ligusticum (3), East Sicily (5), Fretum Siculi (1), Syracuse (10), Mare Ionium (5) Gallicum Mare (4)…28

Cartha: Mare Sardoum (1), Sardinia (7)….8

Upgrades & Strategic

Rome Political & build

Consul 321 26C becomes a proconsul to lead Consul Army II
Rome Consul 323 selected by the Senate – 25D
Field Consul 326 25D selected to lead Consul Army I
FI (Fleet I)…9s (9 ships)…333 15E (yuk)
FV 7s 315 26D
FII 16s 314 26C
Urbanus 304 26D

Senate decides to go sequester and refuses any reinforcements due to their general corruption and incompetence.

Carthage Political& build

Family stays in power, but Cartha goes to an aggressive political orientation due to the situation in Sicily…2 more armies generated (Cartha III with 25 inf and Cartha IV with 20 inf and 10 cav).

Activations

Cartha begins with a failed raid on the coast of Italy. Consul Army I takes the city of Uriniuem in Corsica. The province falls to Rome. Caecilius then marched his army south into Sardinia and captured Olbia: a toehold is established. Rome is pleased.

Cartha then got two naval activations and shuffled fleets between Cartha and Sicily in prep for the turns likely naval donnybrook. Hanno the Great (IP13…25C), commander of the Carthaginian death star, then took his army from Lilybaeum and marched on Drepanum. Consul Army II under our old friend Aemilius 321 26C came out of the city to meet its fate. Rome fielded 34 SPs vs 54 SPs. The net combat DRM was a +3. All signs looked good for the cranky, yet wily, Carthaginian player. The dice are rolled…

Carthaginian player points out his critical die roll: a zero!

…he is rewarded with a zero…resulting in a Major Victory for Rome. Carthage losses 15 SPs, Rome 10, and must retreat. The death star is now left with 45 SPs in “useless” condition. It flees to Lilybaeum.

A random events roll give us good crops in Africa. Cartha sends its Army III to Sardinia to contest the bold move by Caecilius. Cartha also sends an army under its greek mercenary, Xanthippus, to bring Numidia under its heel – now that Cartha has sucked dry all of its Numidian manpower reserves. Garrisoning the cities in Numidia will generate 18 VPs for Cartha.

Rome send Fleet III, under Sulpicius 314 26C to Sicily to engage a Carthaginian fleet. 12 Roman ships vs 9 Carthaginian…both lose 25%…a draw. Rome continues its siege at Panormus…suffering 2 losses (now has 35 SPs) and 3 Cartha SPs starve (3 remaining). Hiero recruits in Syracuse (nothing else to do since Rome owns Eastern Sicily).

Fleet III again engages the Carthaginians and is rewarded with a rare victory. Carthage counters with an attack and Fleet III and is again defeated.

Aemilius 321 26C again leads his valiant Consul II Army into the field. They head south to attack Hanno the Great and his totally weakened deathstar at Lily. The net combat DRM is +3….time to finish off the Carthaginian…a Roman player tosses the dice and is rewarded with a….

A Roman player points out his critical die roll: a zero!

ZERO! Cries of pain are heard in the Roman camp…and the sound of belly laughter in Cartha. The dice gods are true comedians. After the battle, Rome has 26 SPs and Carthage 39.

Next, the siege of Panorums continued, with Carthage holding out with 1 very loney SP. Rome suffered some attrition losses…down to 32 SPs. The Consul Army I decided to breakoff from Sardinia and run back to rome (Rome will need the +2 modifier for reinforcements, given how polarized and inactive the Senate has become).

Roman Consul Army III finally decided to act and took Panormous (invol surrender of the survivors there)…then runs south to attack Hanno the Great yet again, but, fails its continuation roll. The roman players then conferred and decided it was time to send Caecilius home for a Triumph – their first army triumph of the game. Preparations were made. Only thing standing in the way was the Senate. Surely, those idiots would grant Caecilius his triumph. Dice are rolled. The Senate says NO! Roman players begin whispering about the desirability of having a dictator. Plans are made….

In the last act of the turn, Hanno the Great decides it is time to retreat to Cartha with his useless horde. However, Rome has other plans and successfully intercepts the fleeing deathstar. Carthage counters with intercepting the Roman army. A battle ensues…Rome wins, but decides to break off (having only 29 SPs remaining). Hanno the Great retires to Cartha with 39 survivors, having lost 61 and liberating one city: Lilybaeum.

As fleets return to port, the glorious roman fleet III, which had won two key naval battles during the year, is struck by a storm and all hands are lost. Tears are shed by the roman players.

Turn summary

Deathstar vanquished from Sicily. Senate stuck in grid lock, costing Team Roma a triumph. Romans take Corsica and gain a toehold in Sardinia. Rome’s valiant Fleet III lost at sea.

249 B.C.

VP check

Rome gained 4 (Corsica) to 32….Carthage gained 18 (taking all cities in Numidia) to 26.

Upgrades & Strategic

Rome Political & build

Caecilius 326 26C becomes a proconsul and receives Consul Army II
Rome Consul 323 25D and Consul Army I
Field Consul 335 15E and COnsul Army III
FI 338 14E
FV 318 14E (…and Rome won’t be using the fleet this turn!)
Urbanus 327 15E

Senate finally reaches an agreement on something and grants the army some needed reinforcements: 2 legions. But, in their infinite wisdom, appoints a hack, Fulvius, 302 15D to lead.

Cartha Political & build

Carthage changes orientation from Aggressive to Alert; an army is disbanded. Cartha also builds a bundle of new ships. Rome smells raids and siege operations.

Activations

Hanno the Great, now hiding in Cartha like a little girl, begins by healing its army a level to disrupt. Bostar, IP2, takes his army in Sardinia on a tour of the island; garrisoning most cities in a remarkable series of continuation rolls. Cartha sends a fleet to Drepanum in prep for a siege.

Roman players have a sit down and decide to send the field consul to Sardinia. It is worth 7 VPs; at this point, icing on the cake and insurance against reversals in Sicily. Fundanius leads Consul Army III to the island to confront the upstart Bostar. Fulvius leads the newly constituted Consul Army IV to Sicily. He then initiates an attack on the carthaginian remnants at Lilybaeum. 44 Roman SPs vs 25 Carthage SPs. NET combat DRM is a +6; Roman players are already celebrating. The dice are rolled…gonna be big!…

ANother Roman player points out his critical die roll: a zero!

…Rome is rewarded with a zero.. Although ROme still wins, it is not the total victory that was anticipated. 39 Rome SPs and 20 Cartha SPs remain in Lily (no retreat mandated…however, the Carthaginian do retreat into the city…a fateful decision at that). The Rome consul takes his Consul Army I and garrisons much of Italy.

Carthage then got active on the seas…raiding and entering ports to favorably impact various sieges. Hanno, IP14, heals the army in Lilybaeum to disrupt. Old Hanno the Great, IP13, rebuilds the deathstar by sucking up troops in Cartha…ending with 39 inf, 18 cav, 1 elephant.

Rome begins its siege of Caralis in southern Sardinia and siege of Lilybaeum with the Consul Army II. Consul Army I finishes its garrisoning of Italy and disbands. Turn ends on a whimper with no significant random event.

Turn summary

West Sicily remained the focus of the action

A relatively quiet turn (a great opera like Berg’s Carthage does that quiet turns followed by great action)…with Carthage regenerating in Cartha and hiding in Lilybaeum. Rome returns to Sardinia. Time to break for some BBQ.

248 B.C.

We went to one of our usual haunts; Dave’s BBQ. Not recognizing a proper roman consul when she saw one, the cashier requested some proper identification of age; which, made our day.  Credentials were quickly produced and the beer was granted.

A blonde, an I.D. and the granting of beer

VP check

Rome stays at 32….Carthage stays at 26.

Upgrades & Strategic

Rome Political & build

Rome Consul 305 26C Consul Army I
Field Consul 322 16E Consul Army III
Proconsul 319 36E Consul Army II
Proconsul 309 26C Consul Army IV
Urbanus (the useless) 332 26D
FV 323 25D
FI 301 26D

Fleet III rebuilt with 20 ships…316 15E (we’ll be training these bums for years)

Cartha Political & build

Carthage goes Aggressive yet again. Cartha builds Army II with 10 inf and 8 cav.

Activations

We begin this year’s campaign the siege in Lily. No losses for Carthage (damm naval superiority of Cartha at this point) and 1 SP loss for Rome (now 24 SPs). Rome dispatches a fleet to Sardinia.

Hanno the Great, with his rebuilt deathstar, sails back to Sicily (a lack of any effective Roman naval opposition at the moment). He then proceeds to siege Drepanum. Bostar(IP2) brings his army in Sardinia to engage roman Consul Army III. Despite a -6 net combat modifier and 1-2 odds (19 Cartha SPs vs 38 Rome SPs), the brave Carthaginian player proceeds with the battle. The die is rolled….a 6…for a net 0. Carthage loses 4 SPs to 15…and 1 in the pursuit…14 remain. Rome gets nicked for a loss of 4.

Siege at Caralis is inconclusive, despite the the Carthaginian loss in the field. At siege of Drepanum, slight losses on both sides – as with siege of Lilybaeum. Carthage rips off another naval raid of southern Italy. Carthage heals its army besieged at Lilybaeum.

Rome tries to take Caralis by treachery, but the plot is discovered and examples are made of the traitors.

After some heated discussion in the Roman camp about the campaign in Sicily, Consul Army II is ordered to dump troops at Lily (which will be sucked up by the other army there) and then runs to the safety of Syracuse (the idiotic Senate gave Consul Army II an “E” leader – making it a potential sitting duck for the Carthaginian death star). Hiero welcomed his Roman allies in Syracuse, tossed one hell of a party and recruited another SP.

Another siege chit appeared; Caralis and Lilybaeum held strong for Cartha due to having the only friendly fleets in their ports, while Drepanum fell to the Hanno the Great. The Carthaginian player dryly remarked, “I’m back baby. Isn’t this fun, Roman scum?”

Consul Army IV at Lily activated and incorporated the 7 SPs left by army that went to Syracuse. Consul Army IV was now at 42 SPs.

Consul Army II was recalled from Syracuse and sent to Drepanum to attack Hanno’s mob. Hanno the Great intercepted the Roman, received a net +8 (a +5 just from cav superiority!)…let loose the elephants (which promptly rampaged and impacted the odds of the battle by killing their own Carthaginian comrades). Dice are thrown. Carthage wins the battle, but loses 9 SPs somehow – while Rome loses 4 SPs – and limps away with 13 SPs. But, their bravery will be forever remembered. And, Rome promptly orders them back into the breach.

The net combat DRM is -12…Rome is only hoping to inflict losses on the deathstar with the Consul Army II and maybe get lucky with an “X” result (in this case a 1 in 10 shot). Again, one of the great things about this game is the CRT with its “X” results. No such luck…Rome loses 6 (7 SPs remain) and Cartha only suffers 2 SPs (now 42 in the deathstar).

Random event this turn was forgettable.

Turn ended with an activation for Cornelius (309 26C). Another Team Roma discussion…what to do…try to storm Lilybaeum? The Romans decided perhaps the city should be taken by treachery, given that Carthage had only recently taken it and it was likely that not all Roman sympathizers had yet been rooted out. So, Cornelius put his ingenious plot in action by sending in a few party girls from Capua. After catching the attention of those manning the gates to the city, and, subsequently entertaining them, the dice were tossed …

Treachery succeeds!

…and a beaming Roman consul says it all: Success! Lilybaeum falls and is promptly sacked. The Carthaginian army that had been hiding inside surrenders and is promptly sold into slavery. Cartha is down to one city in all of Sicily again. And, so ended 248 B.C.

Turn Summary

Carthage suffered debacles at Lilybaeum and the fields of Sardinia; perhaps ushering in more grim times ahead for Team Cartha.

A glorious end to another fantastic session. 7 turns remaining in this lark. Dusk approaching. Capua party girls whispering in our ears.

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