The Pass of Madness
The third game in our Green Nile campaign

Arab commanders Bill Estes (left) and Jim Pitts(right) confer about the position of hidden units.

In this game, the Imperial column, now commanded by Lt. Col. Archibald Fairchild (Fred Diamond) has left the river and are attempting to force one of the three passes through the 'Mountains of Insanity'. The chosen venue is the 'Pass of Madness'. Lt. Col. Fairchild sent a flanking element out to his left consisting of a mounted unit and two dismounted units, attempting to gain the enemy's rear, while he demonstrated forcefully against the pass frontally.

The Dervishes were commanded by the notorious Emir Tubier (Jim Pitts). His task was to defend the sacred mosque of Babar which was just to the rear of the pass. If the Imperial forces reached that, the Dervishes would melt away. The Mosque was THE objective of the game.

To the dismay of the game-master (who had not forbidden it) and the Imperial forces alike, the Dervishes set up well forward and by a furious combination of fire and close combat, completely denied the Imperial forces any meaningful advance onto the table. The combination of difficult terrain, hidden initial placement, and forward deployment completely unbalanced the game. The British/Egyptian forces never had a chance.

NOTE: The Game-master feels really bad about that, but imperial defeats are SUCH fun to watch! (Jay Stribling)

Mahdist riflemen pop up and volley into the flank of the Egyptian Camel corps. The Camelmen have outstripped their supporting infantry (visible in background). They rashly advanced between the village and the hill, without scouting the position first.

An overhead view of the same, showing the Mahdist attack on the Egyptian Guns, and the Egyptian Camel Corps' mounted counterattack.

Map of the field. The British and Egyptians attacked from the bottom as you view this map. The three small purple squares are the nameless villiage over which so much blood was spilled around the Egyptian guns. The larger purple square in the center of the field is the Mosqe of Babar. Blue rectangles are the starting positions of Dervish infantry units. The same, with a white diagonal slash, show mounted Dervish units, cavalry or camelry. Mahdist guns are shown as a small ball with a barrel protruding. No British were on the field at the start.

A fuzzy view from the Mahdist left, aross the battlefield to the extreme right. A unit of Mahdist cavalry rides into the carnage of the melee next to the village. Two dervish guns on the low ridge have begun to fire at the deployed lines of the British and Indian forces.

The melee around the Egyptian guns in the center. The camel corps are outnumbered by the cavalry charging in from the right, and the Ansar unit immediately in front of the camera which poured down the slope into the town.

The British Players were:

Mahdists on top of the high ridge on their right flank take pot shots at the Indian infantry.

A dervish unit pours down the hill towards the Indian units on the extreme British Left. The Indian units were converted from attackers into defenders and were overcome after 3 turns of melee.

Yet more Mahdists "uncloak" like Start Trek Vulcans! The dervish commanders, among them the infamous 'Emir Tubier' (Jim Pitts) had planned a layered defense, but as it turned out, the British never broke the first layer.

The Dervish Players were:

Dervish riflemen take aim from a position in the low ground, shielded by clumps of thorn brush. Anzac horsement and Indian infantry may be seen in the distance. This brushy area was attacked by the Indian infantry, who were then enveloped by more Mahdists from their left (the right of the picture).

The same dervish riflemen viewed from the British/Indian side of the table.

British Hussars, after executing a tiring flank march through a goat-trail over the mountains, ride towards the mosque of Babar. This mosque is THE victory condition. Should the British hold it at the conclusion of any turn, the shock will cause the Dervish forces to disintegrate. Alas, 'Emir Tubier' had posted sizeable reserves in the vicinity of the mosque (but not in it of course). Two units of fierce desert cavalrymen hurled themselves at the Hussars and after two turns, the outnumbered British horsemen had to fall back. The supporting two units of imperial infantry (not shown here) lagged behind the cavalry. Note the ridge in the background, crawling with dervish infantry all headed to the mosque to prevent it's defilement by infidels.

Another picture of the melee to the side ofthe mosque of Babar. Note dervish infantry approaching from the right.

Imperial commanders Sir Archibald Fairchild (Fred Diamond) and Sir Robert Whitfield (Whit) survey the carnage. Things have not gone well for the Imperial forces today!

Another view of the flanking column, showing the two units of infantry as well as the cavalry, and the dervishes massing to meet them.

Hard pounding! A dervish unit firing from cover of thorn bushes. Several dead can be seen, produced by imperial artillery shells!

After 5 turns, on the Dervish left, the Egyptian infantry have taken their guns back at bayonet point, but the Mahdist cavalry attacks them again!

All this was too much for the British who fell back from their attempt to penetrate the mountains. A long and tiring march back to the river, with no alliance to show for the battle, lies before them.

The game-master now must decide, what the fourth game of the campaign shall be. To game the march back to the river would be fun for the Dervish player, but hardly for the imperial forces. Perhaps one may assume that the Yazulu army finding the other passes weakly held will pour through into the upper Sudan and fall on the Mahdist rear, bent on continuing their traditional strife, while their foes are occupied with the British/Egyptian forces. We shall see!

Go to "Wadi Zoum-Zoum" - Our second "Green Nile" Battle

Go to "The Desert and the River" - Our first "Green Nile" Battle

Go to our Colonial Period Page

Go to the Master Index of Photos and Games

Return to the Jackson Gamers' Homepage

Angelfire - Free Home Pages
Free Web Building Help
Angelfire HTML Library
htmlGEAR - free polls, guestbooks, and more!

Thank you for visiting The Jackson Gamers' pages at Angelfire. Please come back and visit again!