Cannae 216 BC (C&C Ancients)

Now, fully aware of the threat posed by Hannibal, the Romans assembled a truly large army, perhaps up to 80,000 strong, led by two consuls and two pro-consuls. Unfortunately, on the day of battle, the incompetent consul Varrus held command and determined to attack Hannibal, who had posted his army in a location that negated the Roman advantage in numbers – bluffs on one flank and the Aufidus river on the other. Undeterred, Varrus simply packed his legions one behind the other into the constricted area and launched the mass headlong at the Carthaginian center. They advanced into yet another trap. Hannibal had deployed his excellent cavalry and heavy infantry on the wings, leaving his medium infantry and Celt levies in the center. The Roman advance did indeed push the Carthaginian center back and inflict losses, but in the meantime the Carthaginian cavalry had routed the Roman cavalry on both flanks and closed in on the rear of the Roman army while the heavy infantry advanced on both Roman flanks. Surrounded and unable to maneuver, the Roman soldiers were slaughtered by the thousands, and the army was destroyed. Cannae was Rome’s greatest military defeat, and Hannibal’s greatest victory.

The Carthaginians advance on the Romans and are harassed as they get into position. The Romans successfully bait a cavalry attack on their right by Hasdrubal, which results in the loss of the Carthaginian heavy cavalry. (Rome 1, Carthage 0)

Hasdrubal withdraws with what is left of the Carthaginian cavalry on their right, while Maharbal draws blood on the Roman left flank. (Rome 1, Carthage 1)

 The Romans attack on the center and the right, leaving both sides battered but still in the fight. (Rome 1, Carthage 1)

Hannibal takes advantage of the weakened lines in the Roman center to split the Roman army in two. (Rome 1, Carthage 3)

In turn Varro and Atilius take advantage of the equally vulnerable Carthaginian lines to mount an attack from the right. (Rome 4, Carthage 3)

Hannibal's campaign against Rome comes to a halt when he is killed in battle and his army is routed. (Rome 7, Carthage 3)




Paying the Piper (Battles of Westeros)

"Fire and pestilence! Is nothing to be believed anymore? That ridiculous popinjay of House Piper still runs free somewhere, but not here in the Riverlands. No! Here, we find ourselves alone, asked to play the buffoon by House Stark. In our zeal to squash Marq Piper and his raiding parties, we have strayed too far from our encampment and now the Stark dogs nip at our heels, threatening to cut off our return path.

They are fools to have attempted as much. If we push hard enough, we can get a few men through to apprise Ser Jaime Lannister of our situation, and then these Northern scoundrels will find they have enmeshed themselves in a battle they are unfit to win." -Terrance Crakehall

The Lannister forces rush in to take the village seperating the Stark army. Lord Karstark's men on the right make a strong opening attack, but the Mountain intercept the cavalry sent to capture the Lannister crossings in the rear.

The Lannisters cling on their central position, sheltered by the buildings. What remains of the Stark's light cavalry is destroyed by Ser Addam Marbrand and his knights.

Lord Karstark makes some headway and recaptures one of the buildings, while a small force of Stark troops try the right flank again, in the hopes of capturing the crossings.

The Mountain makes his way to the village and crushes all opposition, capturing once more the central building. Meanwhile, Lord Karstark makes a mad dash for the Lannister rear and their crossings, managing to reach one of them.

Lord Karstark charges another crossing, defended by Ser Addam Marbrand, capturing both the crossing and the knight, but it is too little and too late. (Lannister 4, Stark 2)


Enemy Actions: Ardennes

The Battle of the Bulge (16 December 1944 – 25 January 1945) was the last major German offensive campaign in its western theater during World War II. It was launched through the densely forested Ardennes region of Wallonia in Belgium, France, and Luxembourg, on the Western Front, towards the end of World War II, in the European theatre. The surprise attack caught the Allied forces completely off guard. American forces bore the brunt of the attack and incurred their highest casualties of any operation during the war. The battle also severely depleted Germany's armoured forces on the Western Front, and they were largely unable to replace them. German personnel and later, Luftwaffe aircraft (in the concluding stages of the engagement), also sustained heavy losses.

The offensive begins with limited german successes, save for elements of the 5th Panzer Army which manage some breakthroughs, notably capturing Bastogne. Unfortunately for the Germans, there is no fuel stockpile to be found there.

The Germans continue their push in the center of the American lines, also making a big attack on the north and nearly breaking through the American defense.

During the 19th and 20th, the German salient in the center makes a thrust to the northwest, but the Americans halt the advance on the River Ourthe. In the north, the Americans are slowly pushed back towards Vervière.

By the 21st, Vervière falls into German hands, threatening Liège. Despite this breakthrough, the Germans find themselves unable to advance anywhere else.

The next day, Liège is reinforced by the Americans and the rest of the defensive line holds fast. With little hope of another breakthrough, the Germans give up.


Mantinea 362 BC (C&C: Ancients)

Thebes’ shocking victory at Leuctra in (371) had ended the Spartan hegemony over Greece. Epaminondas then organized the Arcadian League of cities in the Peloponnesus, in order to counter-balance Sparta and ensure Theban supremacy. A division in the Arcadian league led Mantinea to ally with Sparta. Sparta’s hereditary enemy, Athens, even joined in the alliance against Thebes. Epaminondas invaded in 362 to reassert Theban dominance. In a plain near Mantinea he encountered the enemy force of 20,000 foot and 2,000 horse with the Mantineans on the right, Spartans in the center, and Athenians on the left. Epaminondas’ force of 30,000 foot and 3,000 horse was deployed with massive depth on his left, the same tactic he had used successfully at Leuctra. The Thebans closed in on the Mantinean wing and then grounded arms as if not to battle this day. Once the Mantineans relaxed their guard, Epaminondas suddenly ordered the attack. The onslaught broke the Mantinean right flank, leading to the defeat of the entire Spartan army. Disastrously for Thebes, Epaminondas was killed in the closing moments of the battle. Sparta had been humbled again, but without her brilliant leader, Thebes was unable to maintain her hegemony over Greece. The ultimate result was a weakening of Greece that paved the way for the Macedonian conquest.

The Thebans make a general advance to form a full line against the Spartan coalition. The Mantineans on their right flank boldly advance to meet the Thebans. (Thebes 0, Spartan Coalition 0)

The Theban left, led by Epaminondas, smashes through the elite Mantineans, killing one of their commanders. (Thebes 2, Spartan Coalition 0)

On the Theban left, the onslaught continues, annihilating most Mantinean resistance as king Agesilaus looks on, helpless to render aid. (Thebes 5, Spartan Coalition 0)

As the Thebans dispatch the last Mantineans from the field, the rest of the coalition army withdraws in defeat. The battle ends with a crushing victory for Thebes. (Thebes 7, Spartan Coalition 0)


River Sabis, 57 BC (C&C Ancients)

Gaius Julius Caesar formed a political alliance with Gnaeus Pompey and Licinius Crassus that became known as the “First Triumvirate.” Caesar obtained the governorship of Gaul as a proconsul, and immediately set about expanding his province from the Mediterranean coast inland. In 58 BC, after many Belgic tribes had surrendered to Caesar, he marched north against the Nervii, the most powerful of these tribes. Joined by other lesser tribes, including the Atrebates and Viromandui, the Nervii horde massed on the north side of the river Sabis. Poor scouting by the Romans only detected some cavalry acting as a decoy, while the Nervii king Boduognatus concealed his main body in the woods, not far from their main camp. Only when the Romans had dispersed from their tactical formation and started to build their camp did the Belgic tribesmen charge from the woods. The surprise was complete. Caesar was caught off guard, but in true form, he set about immediately to rally his troops. The Romans quickly reformed—a testimony to his personal magnetism and to their training. This hurriedly assembled line held until the two legions that were marching with the baggage could come forward. These reinforcements, along with the famous Tenth Legion’s bold actions, and the vigor of his deputy Labienus, enabled the Romans to annihilate the Nervii army.

The Tenth legion, with some support, are the first to attack Nervii, in an attempt to breakthrough to the enemy's camp. The first clashes are violent and the Tenth is battered, but prevails. (Romans 1, Nervii 0)

The Tenth pushes on with fresh support and scatter the Nervii before them, again taking some losses. With the enemy camp in reach and most of the opposition scattered, the Romans begin to feel confident of victory. ( Romans 3, Nervii 0)

The Nervii counterattack with devasting results. The Tenth, in poor shape after several encounters, is annihilated and the nearby auxiliaries suffer the same fate. Though not without losses for the Nervii, this action results in an uncertain battle once again. (Romans 4, Nervii 4)

The Romans, undeterred, make another attack on the left, hoping to smash through the remaining Nervii and burn their camp. Labienus, who had led the Tenth on its ill-fated assault on the Nervii camp, now leads the second attack with the cavalry. In a disastrous turn of fate, the opening clash of Roman and Nervii cavalry results in his death and the advance stalls to a standstill, giving the Nervii a much needed reprieve. (Romans 4, Nervii 5)

The Nervii send some of their warriors in reinforcement and as before, their riposte is devastating. Little remains of the Roman left flank. (Romans 4, Nervii 7)

Julius Caesar moves up to the River Sabis to support the last attack of his left flank and the remaining troops do breakthrough and burn the Nervii camp, but are left in a precarious position. The Nervii easily dispatch the remaining Roman infantry on the left and isolate the cavalry that burned their camp, giving them a hard fought victory. (Romans 6, Nervii 8)