East sweeps bridge battle, claims the war

By DonalBane of Blakmers

Pennsic Independent Battlefield Correspondent

After 16 war points: Eastern Tygers 14, Midrealm Dragons 2

Wednesday proved to be the decisive day for the war as the East Kingdom and its allies were able to sweep the day's battles (including the rapier melee) and claim overall victory in Pennsic War XXXIII.

The day began with the Great Armies of the Midrealm and the East taking the field for the bridge battle. Needing to turn the tide of war, the Midrealm turned in a good fight among the five bridges. While the lines weaved between battles movers, the Midrealm assigned Calontir to the northern bridge, Ealdormere, House Darkmoon and others to the north central bridge, the Darkyard Legion and others to the central bridge, the Oaken army and others to the south central bridge and Trimaris and the Midlands army to the south bridge, with Ironlance and other elements in reserve.

The East looked to press its advantage by assigning Black Talon to the north bridge, the Northern Army to the north central bridge, Atlantia to the central bridge, various other Eastern elements to the south central bridge, and Maarkland and the Great Dark Horde to the south bridge. The Bloodguard, Rome and the Tuchux were held in reserve and the Tuchux would have a major impact on all three fights.

The first fight saw the Midrealm press forward on all bridges, attempting to sap the will of their enemies, but the strategy did not work as the East carefully picked out fighters and thinned the Midrealm's ranks. The end came when the depleted Midrealm forces on the south central bridge got a full, fresh charge from the Tuchux and were nearly driven off the bridge. At the same time, Bloodguard and Rome also charged forward on the southern bridge and the two forces eventually broke out and proceeded to sweep the field, giving the East the win. Hasdrubal's Marines were the only Midrealm allies left standing when the cannon went off.

The second fight saw a more cautious approach from both sides as neither group wished to charge themselves to death. Once again, it was Tuchux who pressed the issue, nearly driving their Midrealm opponents the whole way across the south central bridge before breaking out. While the breakout occurred too late to sweep the field, the East's forces had enough bridges in hand to claim a decisive second win.
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The third fight also involved combat archery, which many gentles used to their advantage. Post-battle, the battlefield was so littered with arrows and bolts, it appeared that Agincourt had been revisited. The East did not waste time in this battle, pressing the Midrealm and breaking them early. The Tuchux led a breakout from the southern bridge, while Black Talon spearheaded a breakout on the north. The two pincers combined forces to grind down the remnants of Darkyard in the center.

After seeing his army triumph again, HRM Kelson of the East refused to be boastful in victory.

"We still have yet to win the war," Kelson said. "The Midrealm has the ability, the chivalry, and the prowess to win this yet. We will not allow ourselves to become overconfident Tygers."

Allied Champions' Battle

The Allied Kingdoms of the East helped put His Majesty's mind at ease. The allies of both the Midrealm and the East assembled near the force with the allied champions and put forward their usual hard-hitting, wonderful display. The battle was a 30-minute battle with unlimited resurrections. The sides fought over possession of three banners with possession being recorded at 10-minute intervals.

The southern banner was largely a contest between Ealdormere and Atlantia, while the central banner largely was fought between AEthelmearc and Calontir with a conglomerate of Allies contesting the northern banner.

It was a rollicking fight, but when the final whistle sounded, the East's Allies had seized the banners for five points, while the Midrealm's Allies claimed three points. One point was contested evenly and declared a tie. Thus, the war point went to the East.

Thursday's featured Melee

Mountain Pass battle: 11 a.m. (two battles, three points each)

This will be a full resurrection battle with three banners being contested over two one-hour battles. Each banner is worth one point. Full combat archery will be allowed for this battle.

What to watch for: Incoming arrows! Seriously, combat archery means spectators will be asked to stay at least 10 feet behind all hay bales. Expect the lines to waver much, with major charges in the final five minutes of each fight.