Syrian Wars 6

Seleucids against Ptolemies


  The King's Speil

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NEWSFLASH!!!....King Ptolemy orders the mobilization of the machimoi....NEWSFLASH!!!

The campaign thus far:

SW_06_map_update.jpg (167169 bytes)


Dire Straits are upon the land. The empire shudders as the Seleucid scourge floods into Syria and Palestine.  The army turns and strikes back at Jerusalem, but to no avail. The phalanx is bled dry. Where will   we get the men to replace our losses. Strategos Snopus is sacked, a new Aetolian mercenary general is hired.  Strategos Blepto takes over the army, he immediately doesn't like what he sees, as the defeated troops somberly file past.  Hebron is too close to the enemy, the army must retreat to Gaza.  Luckily, for Blepto, the Seleucids rush to Joppa where a garrison holds on heroically.. buying time...

But Gaza's stores and stockpiles have been raided, and the demoralized Ptolemaic army rolls back to Pelusium.  Time for Strategos Blepto to earn his pay.  As Joppa hangs on while an armored siege tower can be brought to bear on the walls,  King Ptolemy orders up the machimoi, Egyptian troops to serve in the main battle line.  It is a gamble, will they fight?  No way to judge now, the army needs men, there is plenty of money, armor, and weapons.  Training and time, will they march?

Strategos Blepto oversees the training while Ptolemy plays video games with his sister.  Blepto hears the sounds of angry birds in his sleep... but he is the king... let him play...otherwise he may get in the way.  Off the boats come fresh Macedonian mercenaries, Achaean hoplites, Aetolian slingers and Peltasts.  The hardened survivors of the Syrian War see these reinforcements and know that next time they will have a chance against the Seleucid hordes.

Antiochus gets wind of the Ptolemaic reinforcements and decide to push to Raphia, leaving some troops behind at Joppa to besiege the town.  King Ptolemy hearing this, gets an anxiety attack... and leaves for Memphis... to get some decent BBQ,  but he is lured back by a brand new PS3 that Strategos Blepto smuggled into camp.  The army marches to Raphia.  Maybe the Seleucids will have over played their hand...



At times it is folly to hasten, at other times, to delay. The wise do everything in its proper time.
~ Ovid



So as we see the stage is set, the game is set up and play commences. This time joining me and Paul will be Alexander and Jennifer.  We have 3250 points to parce up.  Alex wants to see how a Ptolemaic WAB army operates, so he will conduct the right wing operations with the elite cavalry, I decided to take on the left wing holding action with my favorite troops, the Galatian cavalry, and the Cretans.  Jennifer was opposite me and Paul duked it out with Alex.  We drew up a deployment and went at it....

Relic Miniatures Antiochus III model is very striking.   The figure is 29mm in size which makes it heroically scaled. I find it to be an excellent personality figure, with lots of nice details.  Antiochus maybe was larger than life, but here he is indeed MEGAS!




Deployment was strait forward but we did have a lot of troops for an eight foot table, luckily we did not clutter it up too much with terrain.

The plan on our side was to launch our superior right wing cavalry and turn their left flank.  My wing was to hold the Seleucid armored cavalry in check, and I was to push the phalanx forward... Strategos Blepto commanded the line up to the machimoi.  King Ptolemy rode behind the lines playing angry birds on his IPad :) (no not really).. his advicors told him to keep the guard cavalry intact, and avoid that scythed chariot hidden behind the hills....

We took the first turn and were off.  The phalanx pushed forward and my wing started to try to tie up what we could.  Jenn's missile troops were hammering me so we pushed as fast for the woods as possible.   Then the Arab cavalry got just cute enough to be charged by the Galatians... they broke but escaped.  Space started to constrict both forces as the troops closed in.  My old grognard Agrianians went right into the Thracians and chopped them up in revenge for last game.  My mission to hold was starting to turn into an offensive.

On the right wing the Royal cavalry kept getting in the way of arrows.. they were dropping fast with no real place to go.   Suddenly the enemy Thracian elite light cavalry charged the Greek mercenary cavalry--- but it was the Greeks who counter charged and drove them off.  (Bad dice for Paul.... __it happens)...

In the center the phalanx squares up and engages.

On my front, archers and woods keep my attack bogged down, but at least the Seleucid Guard cavalry has been bottled up. My elephant stumbles around, not willing to engage the larger Indian beastie (Aventine), which Paul has painted excellently I might add.


The machimoi need to pass a test to see how they are going to fight.  Their motivation slips so they fight at WS2.... this sucks!! They cross pikes with the enemy... but holy biscuits... as they engage the whole first file of the Seleucid phalanx falls down, tripping over themselves.  Apparently they were telling jokes- so confident in victory they were.  Just before the lines closed, one of the machimoi yelled out "We can have jokes too.  How many machimoi does it takes to screw in a lightbulb?"   From the back some rabble rousing Egyptian yelled out... "None! The people don't have any stinking light bulbs, only the corrupt fat Bourgeoisie overlords have such implements of consumer indulgence!"  Hearing this the Seleucids fell into disorder as they rollicking made fun of the worst joke they had ever heard in their weedy Syrian man in the front rank said he liked the joke, and this caused confusion, as a ruffian from Antioch pushed him and ... bowled him thing you know, the machimoi suddenly have the first rank of the enemy skewered accidently!! Who needs weapon skill??

But the luck is even more extreme over on the right wing as the whole Seleucid left wing runs away!!


It's a clear cut victory for the Ptolemaic Empire as the Seleucid phalanx turns and runs!!!  The Seleucid army flees back to Jerusalem, and the frontier is safe.... but almost as soon as the army settles from the great victory, a petition is left with the Royal Vizier, the machimoi have demands... and news comes from Memphis that a revolt is brewing in Hermoupolis......


Thanks to Game Empire for allowing us space to play, they are always helpful and friendly to us historical gamers.







"Victory is sweet, so says my tweet"  Ptolemy, Lord/Dude


Follow the Seleucid side of the campaign on Paul Rigby's Blog:




Wise Ptolemy speaks:

"Why did the Seleucid cross the road?"



The exalted one, Ptolemy IIII guarantees the veracy of the Memphis Gazetteer's press.
One hundred years of honest, almost always truthful, very often unbiased, state run media excellence

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