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Tiny Tin Men :: Archives

That awful DBM system

June 19, 2005 5:19 PM - Posted by Alan - Category: Game report

One of the more unfortunate threads on TTM is Bart’s critique of the dbm system. (I deliberately am not making a link to it ). Despite this and the general support for Bart’s position, I recently managed to sneak a game of DBM with Graham W., the other DBM ite in the group, while nobody was looking (he had even shipped wife Lynn off to the States so that I could enter the house undetected). Mind you, just before starring, we accidentally encountered Stefan on the street near Graham’s house. We had a nice conversation until I let slip that we were playing DBM. Stefan hastily made his excuses and moved on.

In splendid isolation in Graham’s attic, we deiced to try my preferred army for this year’s Anderida competition in November (theme is armies of 1005 AD). My pre-Feudal Scots, massive in number, low in quality, took on Graham’s Nikephorian Byzantines, replete with their elite cavalry, super heavy cataphracts and Russian mercenary spearmen.

We had a terrific game. Deployment was interesting, with GW splitting his armies between two wings, leaving a massive gap in the centre. My warband, looking to hunt down enemy archers were in this vacant centre, and on turn one stormed clumsily off to the right in chase of their target. I had under-estimated the enemy’s manoeuvrability. The Byzantine cavalry quickly closed in on the centre and despite glorious resistance, destroyed the warband for little loss. Things looked black, but on my left my 8 thegns, supported by some Scot light auxilia and mercenary vikings managed first to beat the Rus and then close in on a line of vulnerable Byzantine archers. On the last turn of the game, either side could win; my vast numbers meant that despite the damage that Graham was doing, it was a real slog to cause serious damage. And by contrast, his low numbers meant that a few casualties meant trouble.

In the end the Scots won the day, but it was a close thing. Two interesting armies. My preference, though, goes to the Scots. 140 elements on the table, nothing more expensive than 5 points, but right along the front line we have powerful infantry fighting on factors of 5.

A good evening and after packing boxes, I slunk off in to the night, hopefully unobserved by tasteful wargamers ;)

Comments on this entry

Too late, returning from a Moscow flight I observed you two reprobates on Ave des Volontaires on your ay to the shady deed. As my taxi driver was in full diatribe about WW2 (…) I opted not to attempt to distract him.

I trust the new rules played out well. I may actually join you two in the closet one day to try out my 15s again. For now though, my Sassanid hordes are taking up my painting time.

June 19, 2005 7:20 PM - Posted by JP

Aha! Now where did I leave the tar and feathers? :)

Don’t worry about the slinking — on the one hand, it’s futile (viz JP and his taxi driver) and on the other hand, I’d happily play DBM again, if only to honor the many happy Tuesday evenings at Graham’s old bachelor pad :)

June 19, 2005 9:40 PM - Posted by Robartes

Yes, Bart, the good old days when GW was a bachelor, and we even had a dbm league. Can’t remember who won, but I do recall Steve from the Black Country and his amazing capacity for red wine. Taliking of red wine, Graham may also remember the half-full bottle that jumped out of my hand one day and poured itself all over his landlord’s nice carpet. It was really quite dramatic.

DBM, especially with two armies from the same era remains, in my view, a really excellent game. But in the sense of chess rather than WAB, if you see what I mean. It becomes a puzzle to solve in fact. Some people are put off by the more dubious dbm tactics, but Graham and I have a nice convention. We play in a very gentlepersonly fashion, with no (excessively) nasty tricks until it starts to get dark and the battle is getting tense. Then one of us will shrug, do something mean and say “well, it’s that time of night” and the other will nod knowingly and then get into deep thought about how to return the favour. Provided you don’t get cross about it, it’s actually very amusing. Our game on friday was punctuated with cries of “if only Bart could see that”. Alas, I didn’t have the camera with me.

June 19, 2005 10:57 PM - Posted by alan

Alan - Glad you enjoyed it. I used to enjoy DBM but simply cannot keep up with the amendments any more. However my Punic stuff came out the other night to parade for possible employment with Warmaster. Very nice they look too, and no rebasing needed. It looks very well in 15mm so no 10mm ancients needed -for the present. G

June 20, 2005 11:46 AM - Posted by Graham K