After escaping a supernova, Patch and I did our regular round of Commands & Colors: Ancients, this time playing the Battle of Baetis River from Expansion #3. Along with the Marian Legions rule (for both sides), there’s a fordable river, and a good number of troops on both sides, though Sertorius’ are distinctly lighter.

I had Sertorius first, and led with Order Three Right, doing no damage with ranged combat. Patch played Double Time to crash into my line, forcing a Light to evade with a loss, and doing two blocks each to two more Lights, who did one block in return. I Ordered Lights to try and get a little room, and forced a Medium and LB to retreat. Patch Ordered Mediums to keep his drive going, finished off a Light, knocked out a Heavy, and reduced the other Heavy to two blocks.

Left Leadership let me counterattack, taking out a Medium for one loss on an Aux. Patch Out Flanked to damage an Aux, but took three hits to a Warrior in return. I Ordered Four Left, but merely drove off the Warriors. Patch Ordered Mediums again, closing in the center to finish off the Heavy and kill Sertorius and an Aux, but lost his Warriors in return. Order Three Left let me reorganize the survivors but no more, and Patch Ordered Two Right to trade blocks between an Aux and a Warrior.

I Out Flanked to drive his Warriors away and do a block to a LB, Patch had Center Leadership to drive one of my Lights to the baseline and I crawled away with a Line Command that did a block to his LS (retreated into the baseline), and Patch came back with Order Lights which nearly destroyed a LC. I Counter Attacked, reducing his LB to one block. Patch Counter Attacked for no more effect than driving a LS to the baseline. I then Ordered Lights to drive him back with one loss to a LS. Patch Move-Fire-Moved to finish off my weak Aux. 2-6

Patch started round 2 with Order Two Center to open up his formation with two Lights getting into javelin range, and doing a block to a Warrior. I Ordered Lights to drive off a LS. Patch did the same, and drove back my left flank and did another block to the same Warriors. Line Command put me in contact with the two advanced Lights, one of which evaded with losses and the other was wiped out (Patch didn’t evade with him, probably wanting a path for the Heavies).

Move-Fire-Move let Patch do two hits to a Medium… killing the attached leader, before shuffling his lights to one side. Order Mediums let me drive off some Lights (one down to one block), and Inspired Center Leadership let Patch get his Heavies into action, driving off my Warriors with two banners, and destroying a Medium outright. I Counter-Attacked to do damage to a Light, destroy a Heavy, and do two blocks to the other, but lost a Medium. Patch Ordered Three Center to finish off a Medium, and reduced a Warrior to one block. I Ordered Four Center to finish off an evading Light and the second Heavy.

Patch Ordered Two Center to send Sertorius to an Aux (his third command), I Ordered Two Right for no result while Patch Counter Attacked(!) to finish off my Warriors. I Ordered Three Center to charge Sertorius, driving him off with two losses. Patch Ordered Four Right trouble my weak flank without result, and I returned the favor with Order Two Left. Mounted Charge cost one of my Mediums two blocks, but Patch’s MC lost a block and retreated while he lost his LC outright. Order Lights let me pull back the left, and Order Three Right let Patch do another block to my LS and force my Medium to retreat. Two Center let me charge after Sertorius again, this time finishing off the Aux. 6-5


The Romans have a tough time here with Sertorius going first and having one higher command. However, they have a good number of Mediums which start only two hexes away from the main Sertorian line. An early Double Time can be real trouble for them. Sertorius’ line isn’t as heavy, so he needs a bit of finesse here, and some time to make it work.

Patch had good luck (at least better than mine) for almost the entire match. I got some real luck right at the end to get that win after hovering at five banners for too long. I have seen Mounted Charge decide things too often, so this was a double surprise for me. Overall, this goes to Patch, and I can blame some of it on some really bad ranged die rolls and losing Sertorius early.