Well, ended up putting this one off a bit, mostly because I’ve been having shoulder trouble, and have been avoiding the computer.

But, last Sunday, had Mark over for our usual monthly FtF. It was my month to choose, and I decided it was time to tackle the big First Punic War scenario from Carthage. Thanks to the fact that it’s been a year, and it’s a bigger scenario, we only got through three turns. I had been hoping for a bit better, but we will be continuing this through Vassal

Since I had Carthage in the last go-round, I took the Romans this time. Carthage started with the usual opening of blocking the Straights of Messana, but the Roman consular army in Rhegium made it across anyway.

I then proceeded to fritter away my good luck by staying in the city of Messana when Hiero of Syracuse came up and accepting the siege. With the Carthagninian fleet blocking the harbor, my siege attrition was pretty nasty the first turn. The second wasn’t as bad as the Carthaginian navy didn’t put in an appearance, but two of the three siege attrition markers came up before any Roman LAMs did at all. Eventually, Hanno’s Carthaginian army came up after taking a string of towns on the north coast of Sicily, assaulted the walls of Messana, and slaughtered the starving defenders. He has since landed at Rhegium and taken it. The south of Italy is in a state of serious crisis.

The Romans aren’t doing nothing. They spent 263 BC building an 8-squadron navy at Cumae. This is larger than the entire starting Carthaginian fleet, so in 262, Carthage built an 18-squadron navy at Carthage. The good news for me is that any secondary port can handle my force, but Carthage is the only place the Carthaginian fleet can winter in. He’s more susceptible to poor die rolls, but until then… I need to stay out of his way.

Also, second Consular Army headed north to subdue cities that were friendly to Carthage. I took Genua, and have been besieging Massilia for the past year. Sadly, there are Carthaginian reinforcements in Massilia, so it has not been an easy matter.

I attempted to build a new Consular Army to replace the one lost in Mesanna, but only got permission to raise one legion from the Senate. A second legion was authorized during the year, but it was forced up to Arminum to deal with troublesome Gauls, and to settle the region with good Roman citizens [random event].

So, in two more turns, the automatic victory conditions kick in, and at the moment, it would be a Roman loss. It’s a loss that part of the Senate would not be too unhappy with, since the control of northern Italy is being assured, but that wouldn’t do me much good. My best bet at the moment is to finish up in Massilia and cause problems in Corsica. In the mean time, I need another army….