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Lynxyonok
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[BOR 1.04c/HARDE .3] The Eternal Empire

Wed Sep 24, 2014 2:13 am

This will be an attempt to trace Roman history from start to finish in the same way as Bob did his AAR on this forum. I will also try out Numahr's HARDE mod.

The campaign will be against powered up AI, consul with high detection and activation bonuses and hard foreign entry.

Table of contents:

(HARDE beta 0.2b installed)

Chapter One: Samnites, -298

Chapter Two: Senones, -284

Chapter Three: Epirotes, -280

(HARDE beta 0.3 installed)

Chapter Four: Carthaginians - First Punic War, -264

Chapter Five: Carthaginians - Mercenary War, -241

Chapter Six (as Populares): Pontics and Optimates, -87

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Lynxyonok
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Chapter One: Samnites (-298, May)

Wed Sep 24, 2014 2:18 am

The Gods of random numbers are not benevolent to the Roman army: a 3-3-1 and a 2-2-1 are a bad start. Perhaps next elections will be better for us?

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Lynxyonok
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-298, June

Wed Sep 24, 2014 2:37 am

Samnites lay siege to Neapolis; Scipio Barbarus with 2 legions lays siege to Volsinii. Road construction is started in Perusia, and forest clearing in Hadria, Cosa, and Cosinum - war or no war, we have to develop our little empire. We also ally with Picenium.

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Lynxyonok
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-298, November

Wed Sep 24, 2014 2:54 am

Things are at a standstill in the south, as both sides are lined up once against the other, neither willing to initiate the first battle.

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In the north Volsinii is quickly starving, and a rogue Samnite unit attempts to siege Populonia.

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The first round of forest clearing is complete; Hadria and Casinum get a new round of work orders. My goal is to raise them to 60%+ development to help with supply.
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Lynxyonok
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-297, February

Wed Sep 24, 2014 3:08 am

Volsinii falls. Without a single shot fired, my legions around it lose 2,220 men to attrition, almost 1/5 of their original numbers, that's in supply and in clear weather.

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Lynxyonok
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-297, March

Wed Sep 24, 2014 3:15 am

Consul reset! My new leaders are 3-5-3 and 3-3-2.

Both legions in Perusia recuperate their losses, however due to Samnite troops passing through the area, the road construction crew is destroyed.

Two more tribes join the war, I expect clashes soon.

Urbae expansion launched in Roma, and public works ones in Capua and Spoletum.

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Lynxyonok
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-4/9/297 - The battle of Maleventum

Wed Sep 24, 2014 3:25 am

Two legions and Lucanian allies go on offensive, cutting off main Samnite forces at Neapolis. Despite better leadership (6-2-4 to my 3-3-2), bravery, and precision, Samnites have to retreat due to superior manpower on the Roman side.

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Lynxyonok
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-5/6/297 - The second battle of Maleventum

Wed Sep 24, 2014 3:30 am

Samnites attempt to relieve the siege of Maleventum, but the main forces never meet. Instead, all the losses are due to Roman arrows plucking off garrison from the walls without return punishment.

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Lynxyonok
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-8/5/297 - The battle of Volaterrae

Wed Sep 24, 2014 3:42 am

Roman overconfidence is put in check by a much stronger Etruscan army. Legio II loses 1 and almost loses 1 more Triarii - those were the most experienced warriors in the Roman army.

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Lynxyonok
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-297, September

Wed Sep 24, 2014 3:44 am

Things are much better in the south. Maleventum falls, and the main Samnite army is now happily starving. Either their leader has failed numerous activation checks, or they believed until the bitter end that they can take port without blockading it by water...

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Lynxyonok
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-297, November

Wed Sep 24, 2014 3:58 am

As II and IV Legions are forced to fall back to Rome, Samnites and their new allies Umbrians are fast on their heels. However the Samnite army at Neapolis is almost dead, and that means 2 more legions plus Lucanians heading north in short order.

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Lynxyonok
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-12/4/297 - The battle of Volsinii

Wed Sep 24, 2014 4:09 am

Refreshed, II and IV Legions go on offensive, clashing with Etruscan army twice their size. Even a river could not stop them. Even though only half of the legionnaires survive this battle, enemy is thrown out back north.

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Lynxyonok
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-296, January

Wed Sep 24, 2014 4:13 am

In the south, things are looking better and better. Grumentum falls, Venusia is besieged. The Samnite army will be gone this month.

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In the north, the front has stabilized - for now.

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Public works projects are put on a temporary hold, as finances run dry.
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Lynxyonok
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-5/7/296 - The battle of Bovanium

Wed Sep 24, 2014 4:27 am

I get two new consuls in February, 5-1-2 and 2-4-3. The latter one attempts to lay siege to Bovanium, Samnite capital, and is repulsed. A unit - principes - is lost in retreat.

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-9/7/296 - The second battle of Bovanium

Wed Sep 24, 2014 4:38 am

Several months are spent consolidating; finally, with the brute force of all four Legions, Bovanium is assaulted once again, and this time Samnites are on the run. A slave revolt breaks out against their rule in Canusium.

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Lynxyonok
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-295, February

Wed Sep 24, 2014 4:47 am

After a prolonged siege, Bovanium falls, and my troops are free to advance north, to meet the newest Samnite allies, Senones. Or south, to fight the slaves. It is a tough time for my little nation.

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Lynxyonok
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-5/1/295 - 5/4/295 - The battle of Roma

Wed Sep 24, 2014 5:00 am

Two new consuls are assigned, 4-2-3 and 0-2-4 (ouch).

Come spring, all enemy troops assault across the entire front. Roma is besieged by Gauls and Capua by Senones. My legions sortie towards Roma, and even after two bloody battles the Gauls are still there, while my Lucanian troops clean up a now non-significant Slave presence south of Neapolis.

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-6/1/295 - 6/15/295 - The second battle of Roma

Wed Sep 24, 2014 5:08 am

My army is starving, and an all-out attack is the only survival for my empire. For a little bit it seems like Gauls will stall just enough for Senones to join them...

And then they collapse.

No Gaul walks away from Rome.

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Lynxyonok
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-295, September

Wed Sep 24, 2014 5:14 am

My legions took 2 turns to recover, and even then recovery was not complete. Two triarii elements were replaced by principes - a well-warranted substitution, considering my recent losses.

Samnites are still in control of most of Italy, but I can finally strike back again.

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-11/18/295 - The third battle of Bovanium

Wed Sep 24, 2014 5:24 am

When I probe Senones at Capua I find a half-starved horde that is escaping north. I follow them, cutting their retreat at Hadria. Eventually, I corner the combined enemy group at Bovanium. Most escape; quite a few do not.

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-3/22/294 - The battle of Murgantia

Wed Sep 24, 2014 5:39 am

New consuls, 5-2-2 and 3-1-0.

Roman legions corner remaining Samnite troops, pushing them into Adriatic sea. That, of course, does not include two brand new Lea Testa legions that have appeared out of nowhere, dashing to Bovianum, promptly relieving the siege thereof.

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-4/18/294 - The fourth battle of Bovianum

Wed Sep 24, 2014 5:46 am

Italy is like a traffic light - red-green-red-green as forces keep chasing each other all over.

I miss the main enemy stack, but one of the two Lea Testa legions is not so lucky.

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Lynxyonok
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-292, August

Thu Sep 25, 2014 1:43 am

The war in Italy has become a huge game of whack-a-mole. Samnites are getting reinforcements by the minute, and they already have 4 legions of their own. High activation bonuses and consul difficulty mean they are running circles around me. At least this year I get one decent consul - 5-0-2, the other being 2-2-3. The entire year 223 was a loss with two consuls ranked 2 in strategy.

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Lynxyonok
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-292, November

Thu Sep 25, 2014 1:54 am

With a heavy heart I finally give in, recruiting 4 Socii alae. Then I sign peace with Senones. Then, finally, I bring in a dictaror... Gods favor me. 6-5-3 and 3-4-2.

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Lynxyonok
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-291, January

Thu Sep 25, 2014 2:01 am

What is really helping Rome is all the prisoners. Morale has been climbing steadily, and that will start working for me on the battlefield before long.

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Lynxyonok
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-290, December

Thu Sep 25, 2014 2:55 am

The war is still going on, and Samnites grow stronger day by day. In one battle I actually lose 3 entire legions, mostly through retreat, as a Samnite army plows through 3 areas past the battlefield like a runaway express... that's definitely a setting I will take down, just like activation bonus.

Overall, I will win. However, deep inside, this was a loss. Three dictators had to be called in - and that's just to keep my head above water. Lucanian allies have been wiped out. Experienced legions - some have reached 272 strength mid-campaign - have been lost through desperate battles. Rome is not victorious.

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-289, January

Thu Sep 25, 2014 3:00 am

And peace reigns...

So, what have I learned?

Legions are not invincible. Attacking against superior odds in unfavorable terrain is bad.

Public works are nice, but that money is better spent funding the war effort.

One can always use a better depot network, if only to help cities withstand longer sieges.

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numahr
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Thu Sep 25, 2014 8:41 am

Hi Lynxyonok, nice AAR!

The Samnites really put a nice show... From your last map screen, and comparing with historical outcome, I would call this a Samnite minor victory as they seem to have kept Rome in check, denying Roman supremacy in Italy.

What was your feeling from the MOD? Of course its effects are not always clear compared to what Vanilla would have been. Still, from the reports, the mod seems to have played its role at producing a few decisive annihilation battles (not always in your favor...) without going overboard (not all battles were bloodbath). I would be interested to see the report of the battle where you lost 3 legions.

Other questions based on your experience:

- how did replenishment of partially damaged unit work? In theory, only armies stationary at the beginning of the turn in a level 2 depot region could get replenishments. Replacement chit would not be used at all ("free" replenishment).

- how did replacement of lost element work? In theory, the same conditions should apply, but replacement chits would be needed.

On both accounts, observations so far have been a bit contradictory so I'd be glad to have your feedback on a whole scenario.

- Did you experience any 7 or 8 round battle?

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Lynxyonok
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Thu Sep 25, 2014 9:27 am

numahr wrote:Hi Lynxyonok, nice AAR!

The Samnites really put a nice show... From your last map screen, and comparing with historical outcome, I would call this a Samnite minor victory as they seem to have kept Rome in check, denying Roman supremacy in Italy.

What was your feeling from the MOD? Of course its effects are not always clear compared to what Vanilla would have been. Still, from the reports, the mod seems to have played its role at producing a few decisive annihilation battles (not always in your favor...) without going overboard (not all battles were bloodbath). I would be interested to see the report of the battle where you lost 3 legions.

Other questions based on your experience:

- how did replenishment of partially damaged unit work? In theory, only armies stationary at the beginning of the turn in a level 2 depot region could get replenishments. Replacement chit would not be used at all ("free" replenishment).

- how did replacement of lost element work? In theory, the same conditions should apply, but replacement chits would be needed.

On both accounts, observations so far have been a bit contradictory so I'd be glad to have your feedback on a whole scenario.

- Did you experience any 7 or 8 round battle?

The loss of 3 legions was well-warranted, I left a 6k stack with damaged units too close to the front, and 33k of "barbarians" ran it over.

Replacement was just fine. Size 3-4 depots took a turn or two, and I was lucky to get scraps in the field. It was definitely harder to be reinforced, but I was ready for it, and over compensated.

I will admit that bloodlust definitely took over by the end, turns being ran nonstop; that, or it was just sheer disbelief that I was being beaten! I will pay better attention in the next scenario.

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Lynxyonok
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Thu Sep 25, 2014 9:29 am

numahr wrote:Hi Lynxyonok, nice AAR!

The Samnites really put a nice show... From your last map screen, and comparing with historical outcome, I would call this a Samnite minor victory as they seem to have kept Rome in check, denying Roman supremacy in Italy.

What was your feeling from the MOD? Of course its effects are not always clear compared to what Vanilla would have been. Still, from the reports, the mod seems to have played its role at producing a few decisive annihilation battles (not always in your favor...) without going overboard (not all battles were bloodbath). I would be interested to see the report of the battle where you lost 3 legions.

Other questions based on your experience:

- how did replenishment of partially damaged unit work? In theory, only armies stationary at the beginning of the turn in a level 2 depot region could get replenishments. Replacement chit would not be used at all ("free" replenishment).

- how did replacement of lost element work? In theory, the same conditions should apply, but replacement chits would be needed.

On both accounts, observations so far have been a bit contradictory so I'd be glad to have your feedback on a whole scenario.

- Did you experience any 7 or 8 round battle?

Oh and 7-8 round battles... Yes. Samnites loved retreating, but I did catch a couple. I will lower their activation bonus from +2, and that should help, I reckon.

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