The Siege of Osgiliath
Closing Battles of the War of the Ring campaign Lord of the Rings Battle Report

Neldoreth - February 27th, 2006

The Scenario
Layout

This scenario is based on those in the Siege of Gondor Supplement. The battle takes place in the City of Osgiliath on the banks of the River Anduin. As such a river should run through the center of the board. A broken bridge should be in the middle of the river, and as much ruined buildings as can be procured should be placed on the rest of the map.

Game board layout with objective locations.

Starting Positions

The Free Peoples player starts on the western shore. They must deploy first. Once the free peoples are deployed, the forces of Sauron are deployed on the east side of the river.

Objectives and Turns

The player that controls the most objectives at the end of the game wins. The game goes on for fifteen turns, or until both players decide to call it the end.

Special Rules

The orcs will use landing craft rules as outlined in White Dwarf and The One Rulebook. The orcs get only three landing craft, each one can hold up to eight orcs. The orcs also get a wooden bridge piece. This is treated exactly like a battering ram in every way. In order for the orcs to lay down the bridge piece over the gap, they treat it as though they were attempting to break down a defense 7 door with one wound with a battering ram.

Pre-battle plans
Gondor

Faramir's Defenders of Osgiliath

This game is going to be difficult for more than a few reasons. The first problem is that I only have 300 points of troops to defend the entire shore of the Anduin. Talk about too little butter scraped over too much bread...

Still, there are some things going for me as well. I have a river between me and the enemy for one. I also have a lot of terrain to hide in and behind, whereas the Orcs of Mordor (who number only 500 points worth) will have to cross the wide open river to get to me. So as long as I can keep the orcs at bay and hold the objectives I will be okay even though I am outnumbered.

I will try to set up in key areas near objectives, hopefully buildings that can be defended easily. I will post my archers and rangers in locations that can see most of the river and certainly the bridge. I am hoping this will allow me to keep the bridge clear of orcs, forcing them to have to taxi accross the river in their poorly constructed boats. Other than that I will hope that the orcs make some bad moves that I will be able to exploit... May the will of the Valar protect us all!

Mordor

Gothmog's Horde

Orcs hate water, but they hate men even more. I have to get accross the river, hit hard and fast,and sweep the defenders off of their defences in order to take the city. I think the best way to do this will be to concentrate my forces. First, by putting all the boats on the north side of the river I can maximize my numbers against those that hold the shore. Hopefully the Gondorians will be spread out along the shore as well, which will further increase my advantage.

Second I will try to get the gap in the bridge closed as soon as possible. If I can get accross that bridge then I will be laughing! A straight and clear path into the heart of the city, and my orcs won't even have to brave the waters to get there! I realize that the bridge will likely be guarded by many men, both with bows and spears, but it is the greatest weakness in the defenses, and will be much less of a chance than the whole boating issue! Onto battle then, and may the age of men come swiftly to an end!


The Battle - Starting Positions

Starting Positions

The Battle - Turn 1 & 2

Faramir looked on with anxiety at the advancing orcs. The eastern shore of Osgiliath teemed with life like that of scurrying insects, swarming to bring doom upon the world of men. Faramir strengthened his resolve and called to his warriors to stand fast and defend the city. The archers were given leave to fire at will. With a sudden flurry, the orcs began their advance, and the bows of men sang in the night. Farmir's terror was realized when he saw that the entire orcish force made way from the northern side of the bridge, bypassing many defenders on the southern shore. He called to his men to move north to protect the city!

With only a sword or spear many men could only watch as the orcish horde advanced. But they watched under the buzzing of arrows speeding invisibly through the night sky. Although two orcs were felled by the bows of Faramir's rangers, it was not enough, and the hearts of men began to sink into the darkness as the orcs with their landing craft reached the eastern shore and made ready to pass over the river.

The Battle - Turn 3

The orcs let out a war cry that shattered the hopes of many defenders of Osgiliath. Gothmog, rallying his rabble, called for the landing craft to launch and for the gap in the bridge to be filled. With unprecedented luck a landing craft made its way entirely accross the river, droppings its front loading birdge it was made ready to spill its death-dealing orcs onto the lines of men.

The orcs make their way accross the river.

The other two landing craft made way accross, making it well over half way to the western shore, their cries of hate and death filled the night air. Although many orcish and manish arrows filled the sky, none were felled by their deadly tips.

Just as the first landing craft dropped its bridge the orcs on the bridge dropped their device in place, bridging the gap and making a clear way for the orcs to cross... The orcs had began to cross into the west, and the fight was about to be joined!

The orcs bridge the gap in the crossing of the Anduin, while
other orcs cross in landing craft below on the river.

The Battle - Turn 4

The sound of clashing metal rung through the air as the swords and spears of orcs and men met. The first craft to cross emptied its orcish cargo, and the battle was made. The remaining orcish crafts made the shore and readied to attack as one Gondorian and one Orc died in the fighting that already began there.

Faramir waited on the bridge for the coming orc horde that was crossing. He called to his rangers to loose one more volley on those advancing, and although they felled one orc, Faramir feared that it would not be enough.

The Battle - Turn 5

The orcs and men clashed in earnest along the shore and on the bridge as nearly all orcs now pressed the defenses. Gothmog charges into battle with a blood lust, felling one man of Gondor while Faramir yells a challenge to him over the body of a slain morannon orc.

The orcs swarm the western shores of Osgiliath

Men along the shore manage to hold the orcs, but none of the foul beings are felled. Damrod rallies his troops as arrows pierce the skies seeing one Gondorian and one Orc fall. The battle is not yet decided, but the hearts of many men fear that they will not come out victorious as the tide of orcs continues to flow.

The Battle - Turn 6

The blades of warrior and orc continue to clash as the battle rages. Along the shore and on the bridge four men are felled in the fighting, while no orcs are dispatched by the defenders of Osgiliath. Woe falls on many of the hearts of the defenders while Damrod attempts to keep his defenders in the fight.

Faramir battle Gothmog alone... and it is to be his last.

But it is not to be, and the heart of even Damrod falls into darkness when Gothmog meets Faramir's challenge. In a flurry of rusted steel and iron, the sword of Gothmog cuts true and Faramir is felled where he stood. A silence grips the city as both orc and man knew the fight had been decided then and there. Cries went up even amidst the battle in remorse for the mighty fighter Faramir...

The Battle - Turn 7

Damrod, with no other choice calls for a retreat and led the remainder of the defenders of Osgiliath from the city. Two men are felled in the route, but the remainder escape death. The battle is over and lost, and the world of men is now under the siege by the forces of Sauron...

The western shore is overun. Damrod call for the retreat.

The Aftermath

Gondor

That went horribly. Although the bridge should have worked to my advantage it didn't. The orcs there were able to concentrate their attack while, because of my poor deployment, I was unable to maximize the defence there. This allowed Gothmog to square off with Faramir alone, which was the source of Faramir's demise...

I also made a mistake when I left the Gondorian archers on the southern side of the bridge. Their shooting was basically useless (but so was the orcish shooting) and they would have done me better if they had helped defend the bridge...

Damrod's defence of the northern shore was well fought, probably the best of the battle, but unfortunately he was sorely outnumbered. With 24 orcs attacking nine defenders all it takes is a one lost fight and death of a defender and the line is broken... And surely enough it was broken, causing it to fall back in a route after only two turns of fighting... If I am going to save the free peoples of Middle Earth in this campaign I am going to have to work on my strategy battle game tactics! It was a great game though, and well played by my opponent. I only wish that the future of the free peoples wasn't riding on my shoulders!

Mordor

The power of the orcs will sweep away the men of Middle Earth! That battle went exactly to plan. My orcs managed to sweep accross the river and the bridge, allowing me to be on the west side of the Anduin by turn four! The concentration of my attack also paid off heavily, as over half of the defenders started the game on the south side of the bridge!

Although the battle was well fought, it was the poor dice rolls that lost Faramir so early in the game. Although I had the initiative, the battle only ended so early because of Faramir's poor rolls to win the fight, and then to fail to save any wounds with his fate rolls... Still, it was a pleasure to play against a great opponent... And may the world of men fall swiftly: Next stop - the Pelennor!