At Cold Wars I went a little crazy and did something out of character for me - I purchased a 28mm Bulgar army in the flea market for a ancients. The price was reasonable, but the army was big and cost rather large for my usual sensibilities. I bought it anyway with nothing else at the con nipping at my hobby dollars. So for the first game with my brand new 28mm army, I played Sean's Late Romans. It is not that much of stretch, Mark Greenwald tells me. He has read accounts of Patrician Roman forces encountering early Bulgar type armies. So with that said, it was off to battle my new force. The Bulgars mainly consist of Bow armed Cavalry that is medium or heavy plus impetuous heavy cavalry nobles that can be elite. To counter this Sean went Cataphract heavy with the standard heavy Infantry Legionnaire component.
Bulgars have a large medium swordsmen contingent.
Rome's big Cats!
The Roman camp.
This was a Legion from the east and Camel scouts.
The battlefield is somewhat constricted.
The defending Romans chose rough ground.
My Bulgar battle plan is to screen off my left between the swamp and woods those big Cats will hurt if I fight them.
Bulgar plan is to go strong after the right flank and ignore the Roman center.
We fight over gold!! Ok its golden cheese dip but its a worthy objective none the less.
Opening Bulgar flank moves.
This bunch of yahoos will be ridden down if they leave the woods and swamp.
Whack! It didn't take long for the Cavalry to meet Cavalry.
The Roman Cavalry is no match for the Bulgar elite nobles.
Hits are being taken.
The initial charge scattered the Roman light horse and gave the Romans some hits.
Bulgar horsemen ride up and shoot arrows - the Legionaries are unimpressed, but we did put a hit on the cursed Camel.
We have made a nice bowl for the big Cats.
The Romans picking on Bulgar pechening allied light horse.
The fight continues.
The Roman bowmen are giving out some hits to the Bulgar Cavalry.
The center delaying action.
The Roman right is not moving fast having bad command dice.
Ouch Roman bowmen shot us!
More skulking Romans ride behind the Bulgars.
The Roman flank is taking a beating.
The Roman light horse were almost driven from the field they will be back though.
Cataphracts do not like to turn.
The Roman light horse put up a defense.
The Roman archer infantry flank is now under attack.
Roman left command still jammed up.
This light horse is a brave one.
Roman bowmen are going down.
Mark and Sean move to unhinge the Bulgar delaying action.
Bulgars fire bows.
The Bulgars evade when the Romans charge.
Stand-off neither can attack the other without a big disadvantage.
Things are confused on the other flank.
The last bit of Roman bowmen are about to die.
The Romans left is now really pressing the Bulgars.
The Bulgars are disoriented after the fight.
Time to attack Legionaries.
The Bulgar right flank can no longer evade - its time to hold our ground.
Its a race against time to destroy the Roman center before the Bulgar right flank gives way.
Roman Cataphracts whack the medium Bulgar horse hard.
The Auxilia are in the fight as well.
Meanwhile the Bulgars swap the Roman Legionaries.
So the question is which fight will break first.
Bulgar right flank is collapsing.
The Romans throw in a Camel to scare the Bulgar horse.
Right flank is going.
All over for the Bulgar right.
Time for the Roman center to die.
Several Bulgar horsemen head to the Roman fortified camp - if we take it victory is ours.
But now not much stands in the way of the Romans from sacking the Bulgar camp.
Bulgars hit the Roman camp and sixes to break in.
Both armies are close to breaking.
Boom! the Bulgars roll a six and sack the Roman camp.
If the Romans kill a stand, the Bulgars will break as well.... but it was not to be.
This stupid Camel was finally killed with extreme prejudice!
This was my first fight with the Bulgar army. As you can see, the strength is all the Cavalry with bows backed up by some elite nobles. The list also allows for large contingent of heavy spearmen, which I need to paint. As far as the fight goes, it was a good one. If the Roman Cataphract command could have attacked sooner, it probably would have gone differently.