After reading the rules, getting a few games in, losing badly, and now having actually studied the rules, I`ve formed an opinion on this ruleset by Too Fat Lardies.
Dux Britanniarum is a ruleset that allows you to game the last vestiges of the Roman Empire in Britain versus the Saxon invaders, and it`s companion book introduces the Raiders, small nations that are around in the area.
These are the Picts, the Scotti and my beloved Irish (a Dark Age gamers dream army, as they remained unchanged bar perhaps Fianna with Great Axes from this era all the way through the Viking age) as well as a more mounted Romano British army list variant.
Now, the rules in the core are pretty simple, and a single playsheet allows you to game the whole system. The subtilities are in the use of the Fate cards, special events that can influence the flow of battle. And it is needed, as while the Romano British have a weaker unit in the form of their Levy compared to the Saxons, the ability to form a Shieldwall and ignore the first kill every round of combat or shooting is immense.
Though perhaps not that gamewinning, as there is also Shock, the effect of your units being engaged and slowly being battered in the battle, and this is a more determining factor in how the overal army fares. Shock lowers your force`s will to fight, and the amount of dice you roll in every round of close combat, and not even the best of Noble's can keep that flow under the control once the floodgates open.
Now, for a control freaking, defensive line holding player like myself, these rules (well, it IS typical for the era) are a bit of a nightmare, as it favours the bold and the aggressive player if you look at them from afar. And that sort of playstyle is absolutely not my forte...
There are some (minor) issues with the rules in my opinion, in that the placing of some things in the books isn`t exactly logical. I think it would have been better that the upgrades you can buy in your "Career Path" (aka, the campaign ladder) would have been placed right after the tables. Now they are somewhere near the back to see what you can do, and one of them, an Armoury Shop, is even in the raiders book instead. But once you know where to look for them, it`s okay, just a small nicknack I though was a bit unhandy.
But so far I had great fun playing the rules, and have been painting up a lot of Dark Age models (at last) as a result of them, so yes, I`m happy with obtaining them.
SELWG show games.
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