Battle of El Arish, Fall 68 A.D.
The armies engaged were quite different: Alexander had the minimum compulsory cavalry and relied mostly on legionary infantry, while Vespasianus had the maximum Cv and Lh allowed, with a smaller infantry component.
Vespasianus was the defender, and tried to have a battlefield as open as possible. He was quite successful.
There were two wicked swamps and a large GH in the sector were the battle would have been fight. 350 AP armies are quite small and Vespasianus, on the right in the picture, tried immediately to sweep his left. His infantry was a bit overstreched, but was helped by the good defensive position. Alexander plan was to attack from his left in echelon. The right wing had the lower pip. Vespasianus gave the lower dice to the center and the higher to his left.
The first turns Vespasianus manouvered aggressively his cavalry sending Numidian reserves to the threatened sector, while Alexander was quite slow to start his attack.
The rebel roman defensive wing was immediately under pressure and had to halt. This was going to create a gap in the line, for the central legion lost any support on its right should it advanced. Alexander hesitated and retarded his frontal attack, in the sector were he had the infantry superiority.
While Alexander was being outflanked and logorated on his left, Vespasianus left the hill and send some auxiliary aiming at the gap in the enemy line
The rebels had some C3 problem, and another menace developed when the Ax cut off the left wing. Alexander left corps, on lower pip dice, was doomed, and this meant that his center had a large enemy force behind it before being engaged
Alexander right wing after some turns of resistance, suddenly collapsed. The rebel sent some reserves to protect his now exposed center, while the infantry finally clashed
The presence of the cavalry in the middle of the infantry line proved to be a weakness for the rebel. The repulse was exploited by Vespasianus to pressure the enemy line back and outflank Alexander auxiliary from both sides.
The infantry lines were locked, while the loyalist mop up rebel left.
The loyalist cavalry is sent against the baggage and to attack the center
Rebel general is taken in the rear, while his army is under pressure everywhere. He will survive.
Baggage being looted
With one corps broken, the army baggage looted and some losses in both surviving commands, rebel army broke.
Vespasianus manouver paid well. Probably the rebel should have changed pip dice once he saw the center pinned and the wing threatened. Being cautious in the first turns was not the better choice, but his tactical position wasn't good. Vespasianus gambled having very few reserves in the center, but the rebel breakthrough was too late to worry him.
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