|Baggage train heads to the left flank|
The battlefield was fairly open, a couple of small wood copses in the centre. A small skirmish down the Viking right flank opened the action, a unit on each side falling in combat, with the Vikings deciding it was too difficult to get past the archer levy on that side. The baggage train headed to the left flank. The action switched to the centre, location of the bulk of the Viking army, while a single unit of warriors accompanied the cargo to the left. The Saxon army attempted to relocate their troops.
|Warlords face off|
The fighting in the centre was sporadic and non-decisive for the most part. A concerted charge by the Viking warlord into the Saxon Lord should have seen him hacked to pieces, but the gods deserted the Viking dice and the Saxon Lord escaped by the skin of his teeth - or rather by the sacrifice of his hearthguard unit. Meanwhile, the baggage train lumbered on, ever to the left flank and a much smaller Saxon defending force.
|Action on the left flank|
In an attempt to clear the way, Viking warriors on the left flank charged but came off second best, though both sides were now considerably depleted. In the centre, a devastating Saxon arrow volley completely wiped out a warrior unit, leaving the Viking warlord marooned with his far more pathetic levy archers, who seemed unable to hit anything even though it was just yards in front of them. But Loki came to their aid, whispering false rumours in Saxon ears, warriors slinking away from the battle for no apparent reason (this being one of the more esoteric Viking battleboard abilities).
|The Final Showdown|
As with many a game of Saga, it had been a brutal affair, corpses littered the ground. As the centre was now depleted, the Vikings managed to smuggle one of the baggage animals to safety, but the remaining two were blocked by a handful of Saxons. And it was just a handful - the Saxon Lord, three of his warriors, facing off against just two viking warriors. The Lord attempted to tackle the ox cart, but somehow was driven off by the docile beasts. Loki once more played his part as his more Saxons slunk from the battlefield. The lone, fatigued Saxon Lord was finally bested by a pair of viking warriors and the battle was over. The baggage was safely received by the victorious Vikings. A bad day for the Saxons.
In the post battle sequence, things got even worse for the beleaguered Saxon. The Warlord suffered a serious wound and then received news that his province was suffering from flood and famine. Penniless and dejected he limped back to his camp. The Vikings however had even more fortune bestowed upon them. Gold flowed, warriors were recruited and were magically transformed into hearthguard!! Mmm, sometimes random campaign events can be particularly overpowered. Ten warriors is barely a point in Saga terms, but ten hearthguard are two and a half points. The Vikings are easily in a position of power at the end of this first campaign season, while the Saxons are now definitely the underdogs. It will be interesting to see if the system can cope with such unbalances.