Wednesday, 10 July 2013

Two Crossings - A SAGA engagement

On Monday night I caught up with my good friend Mark to play yet another game of Saga, after the previous weeks massive Pirate game it was good to have a quieter more simpler affair.

We chose to play the battle of the Fords scenario (two river crossings contested by equally matched warbands). I for my sins decided to stick with the Anglo Danes and Mark retained the battle winning Vikings.

The field of battle - Anglo Danes to the Left
Both forces were chosen prior to the battle (6 points each) and the proviso that each of us would choose one special force (Hearthguard with Dane Axes for the Danes & Berserkers for the Vikings)

In the end I chose and set out my forces as such: 1 Warlord, 1 four man unit of Hearthguard with Dane Axes, 1 four man unit of Hearthguards, 1 12 man unit of warriors, 1 8 man unit of warriors and 1 4 man unit of warriors = a 12 man unit of Levies.

Why the small warrior unit: This could have given me seven saga dice but the max is six so I could still afford to lose one unit but not lose a die.

Mark chose: 1 warlord, 1 4 man unit of Berserkers, 1 8 man unit of Hearthguard, 2 8 man units of warriors and a 12 man levy unit (6 points – six dice)

We diced for sides and initiative.
Initial Viking deployment

Both forces decided to place most of the heavy units on the left hand side of the table leaving the smaller bridge defended by warrior units. Recognising that my forces on this side were marginally stronger than that of the opposition I ploughed forward with my 12 strong warriors and over the bridge into the waiting Vikings. Having loaded up the forces with Head as Iron (re roll saves) and A Shield Wall (+1 armour)_ I felt relatively confident that the waiting band of Viking warriors would crumble in the assault. Dice were rolled but some fantastic defence saves ensured the Viking unit held true – my troops bundled back the requisite four inches. With no cover in site the Viking levies opened fire felling two more of my brave men. With a stalemate in the offing I decided retreating from bow shot would be a sensible action.

First Assault over the bridge
Viking defenders & levies protecting the bridge

Anglo Dane Archers

The uncrossable river was proving to be the friend of the lightly armed levies as they became untouchable to my advancing troops. With the action on the right hand side calming down attention was drawn to the other side of the river.

Viking Warriors, Warlord and Berserkers
The Vikings wait...

 This time my levies advanced forward and began to take pot shots at the Berserk unit sitting astride the bridge. Their lack of armour soon told as two men quickly dropped to Danish arrows. Mark quickly realised that these guys were sitting ducks so launched headlong with the remaining two into the levy unit. Despite the 6 to one advantage in  numbers the levies fell back with a third dead in the field. With a bit more archery the remaining berserkers were soon despatched albeit their last stand took out a further four archers.  

Berserkers charge over bridge

Anglo Dane Levies shooting at Berserkers
Berserker fury
Lucky Potshots

The game had become one of cat and mouse who would brave the bridge first. Trying to force the issue I sent my remaining archers (only four) to snipe at the warriors and huscarls sitting on the side of the bridge. A few shots later (very lucky dice rolls) a further four Vikings were heading for the rainbow bridge in the sky. Mark still wouldn’t come forward and I certainly did not want to try..
The final assault

The bridge is mine

I returned to the left hand side and once more my depleted unit of warriors headed over the bridge. This time luck was with them as the Viking guard collapsed in a whirl of blades. With the advantage now firmly in the hands of the Danes on one side of the river we decided to call it a night – I had won my first game of Saga !

End positions


  1. Tanks for the pics and the interesting AAR. Congrats for your first SAGA victory.

  2. Nice report & good looking table. I really have to find time to paint up some Saga forces & start playing :)

  3. Great stuff! Wonderful photos and a great report.

  4. Super looking game - great pics and report

  5. Thank you for sharing. Nice report.

  6. Very nice report, great looking pics!