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Age of Discovery

Warfare in the Age of Discovery, or AOD for short, is our choice for when we play Renaissance, which probably isn't often enough! The rules use a 1:25 scale, with most cavalry units having 6-8 figures while the larger pike units are around 23-24 figures strong. This means that there are a lot of small units running around, which creates some interesting tactical choices. This is truly a rock, paper, scissors type of period as trying to get the right combo of artillery, pike, shot, and cavalry to work together is certainly a challenge. The rules are designed around the morale system and with a large number of below average units on the board, the results can be chaotic. Entire flanks can collapse in a second, artillery units flee at the first sign of trouble, while the Swiss and Germans fight to the last man! This creates a very unusual and fun game as players try to sort out what is happening and stay in control of their forces.

AOD: France vs. Imperialist 1525


Armored cavalry clash and Swiss vs. Germans

Back to the Renaissance era where we had a clash between the French and Imperialists in Italy during the 1525 period with armies based off of those that fought at Pavia. Both sides had multiple pike units, skirmish cavalry, gendarmes, and heavy cavalry along with artillery. The French had fewer units, but made up for that with their high quality Swiss pike and heavier guns. The Imperialists had contingents from Germany, Spain, and Italy for their pike and cavalry units. The set up produced something unusual in that both sides had most of their heavy cavalry on the same flank, which led to some extremely bloody battles. The game also featured both sides losing artillery batteries whne they blew up while firing! There was also the usual to and fro with the smaller Class 1 units, who when they take a single casualty often fall back, which can cause a chain reaction!
The main event, however, was the push of pike between the Germans and Swiss near the center. By the time they came to grips the French left flank was in tatters and the right was a stalemate, with both sides worn down to only a few figures left. Both sides countercharged and soon there were large ongoing melees where the German pike prevailed, pushing back all of the Swiss pike blocks, even though both sides suffered dreadful casualties. In the end the game was called as an Imperialist victory as the French attack ran out of gas and had no reserves left. A very fun game where we had forgotten a lot of the rules! We definitely need to play this more often.

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