Turn 68: 278 BC, August
Turns out the Romans did
take the risk of assaulting Hipontum:
I won't really miss these troops, but I do mourn the loss of National Morale and Victory Points! The Romans now have 1432 VP, I have 1440... that means, it will propably all boil down to one final epic battle... just this time Ptolemeos, Pyrrhus' son, will lead the Epirote alliance.
Ptolemeos will lead the main army, composed more or less exactly like Pyrrhus' former army, against the Romans while Milon will assault Venusia with the forces from Sicily. They don't have full cohesion so I don't want them to battle the Romans themselves, but I think they shouldn't have any problems taking Venusia and Maleventum back – netting me some additional VP that might just turn out decisive!
But really, all the pressure is on Ptolemeos right now. I do not envy him, his father just bailed and left him in Italy! But he is a great offensive general with an offensive skill of 6 – better than Pyrrhus himself, so I have confidence in him.
Turn 69: 278 BC, September
As expected, Ptolemeos won the battle for Hipontum:
Unfortunately, Milon was not so lucky. His assault went out of power after some initial gains:
I have no idea where the Romans are, they seem to have retreated at least back to Capua...
Milon's army is very weak now but it will still continue the assault on Venusia while Ptolemeos' army will also move to Venusia in case the Romans counter-attack.
For some reason the Romans have more VP than me now! (they have 1476, I have 1474) I don'1485 know why, there is nothing that tells me how they got them. This puts the pressure on me again...
Turn 70: 278 BC, October
Great news! Venusia surrendered without a fight. The Romans took the "bait" and attacked Milon:
That's not so great news by itself, but this "defeat" was very small while my counter-attack pushed them back again:
(and yes, you are seeing right, it seems Megacles has also seniority 1, the highest possible – same as Ptolemeos – so he takes command instead of the great Ptolemeos... but it doesn't seem to have mattered much)
The Romans are nowhere to be seen again and the next turn should be the last! Which is great, because I got some additional VP because of the surrender and capture of Venusia and the victorious battle! I have 1502 VP now, the Romans have 1485. So, all I will do now is just move into the forts in Venusia and Metapontum. I don't see what the Romans could do now to win this.