Azula vs. Galen Marek

After two days of prep time who will prevail in a fight to the death between the Dark Knight and the God of War?

Batman vs. Kratos

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Emperor Manuel Commenus vs. King John III Sobieski : Battle and results

 Since an accelerated math course is draining a lot of my time away from this project, I figured that it was only fair to give you, my viewers, a sneak peak of the fight to come.
Characters (bolded are historical figures) :

Byzantine Kataphraktoi:
*Standard equipment = Kontarion lance, Spathion, Paremerion, 2-3 Bardoukion (2 if axe is included) , kite shield, dagger

Emperor Manuel Commenus (1118-1180): standard equipment

Paulos:  Toxton, tzikourion
Basil :  Marzobarboulon 
Constantine : Standard, two Kontarion, tzikourion
Stephanos :   Toxton, sling
Leo : sling
Alexandros :  toxton, Marzobarboulon 
Philippos : Toxton, Sling, 
Demetrios : Tzikourion
Romanos :   Marzobarboulon

Polish Winged Hussar:
*standard: Kopia Lance, 4-5 flintlock pistols, Szabra, Koncerz, Pallash

King John III Sobieski (1629-1693) :   Gorget, Tasset, Hunting dagger, Nazdiak

Dominik:  Carbine, Czekan Axe, luk
Edmund:  luk
Zygmunt :  carbine, Nazdiak
Timoteusz:   luk,  Nazdiak
Marek : luk
Konrad : ,  Czekan axe
Apolonius :  Gorget, Tasset, Nazdiak, Luk
Czeslaw:   carbine, hunting dagger, Luk
Franciszka : Czekan axe, carbine

     The Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth had always been the jewel of the Baltic, with every neighbor- be they Prussia, Austria, Russia,The Ottomans  even Sweden- casting a predatory eye on  their lands. Currently the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth was in bad straits; "the Deluge" period, which was characterized by a series of rebellions and foreign invasions, had effectively reduced the territory of the Commonwealth by a third. For much of his reign, Sobieski had been forced to seek new alliances to keep his state alive where previously none were needed nor wanted.  These alliances usually proved to be fickle and were routinely abandoned. An alliance with France and Sweden to conquer Prussia had failed to come to fruition, and a alliance with the Ottomans to Austria ambitions was likewise dead in the water. Instead he was now allied with Austria marching to fight the Ottomans.  To Sobieski, the law of Europe demanded that today's friend would be tommorow's enemy and the Polish King was forced to obey lest his country get swallowed up. 

    Currently the King was patrolling the Southern border with the Ottomans together with some of the more prominent Hussar-nobles, mostly so he could gauge their feelings behind the upcoming march to Vienna. The rest of the army was about 15 miles north, and the King had set up a royal camp about 4 miles northwest. As expected they weren't particularly enthusiastic about helping out one of their rivals, but as far as he could discern none of them were going to betray him like Michał Kazimierz Pac did. These men were all either patriots or greedily imagining the personal benefits that such a campaign could give.   

 Clouds were gathering in the skies above and Sobieski decided that it was time to head back to camp as he had no desire to be caught out in a torrential downpour. His armor may not rust but it wouldn’t protect him from catching a cold in this damp fall weather. He turned back to the camp, where the sight of a long black smoke cloud greeted him. Aghast at the prospect that some of the Turks had managed to sneak around to pillage his encampment; the Hussars broke into a gallop.
        Manuel Commenus I was a man of faith, and one who usually did not like attacking fellow Christians.  Still the men were hungry, the inhabitants were unwary (and, as Manuel later found out, Catholic) and gold glittered from within the camp. The Emperor of Constantinople had marked his reign by taking advantage of opportunities that the divine had presented to him (not to mention making his own) , and he wasn't about end this trend. Four to five minutes of frantic fighting later and the camp was Byzantine. 

  The hungry Byzantines, for they had been separated from the rest of their army ever since the strange fog had covered the landscape two days ago, descended upon the food supplies like excited jackals that had been non-to-patiently waiting for their prey to die.  They butchered the chickens, pigs and threw it all into a stew. The men had just enough patience to wait until it was cooked whereupon they then gorged themselves on a much needed meal.

    Manuel, being the emperor, had his portion served first.  He ate warily, with his eyes fixed to the horizon. Unlike his men, whose spirits had risen and were not merrily chatting away while feasting, he was gifted with a perceptive mind. They men had been too lightly armed to be nobles for even the poorest nation, and lacked any skill with what few weapons they had. They reminded him of the servants that took care of his needs while he was at camp; numerous but not good for much besides manual labor. And wherever there are servants there should be nobles which means...

    As if on cue a group of horsemen appeared on the horizon, briskly marching to their position. Manuel cried out a warning to his men, who were disciplined enough to drop their food and mount their horses. Manuel stopped Leo, Stephanos and Phillippos in the act; as they were going to be the ones who started this show. Normally he would try to use diplomacy to diffuse bad situations, but he sure they wouldn't be in the listening mood. 

   The stranger's pace slowed to a trot, and as a heavy cavalry commander Manuel knew that they were saving their energy. As the rest of men lined up behind him, the three slinger took the front position, and began to unload their deadly lead arsenal down the field.

   Rocks raced past, and Sobieski ordered his men to step up the pace. Curiosity gripped him as hard as he gripped his bridle. Who the hell would use a sling in this day and age? These men weren't armored like Turks; indeed they were so heavily armored that they may be part machine as no flesh could be seen! Another sailed past him, this one just narrowly missing his ear. To his right he could here that Edmund wasn't so lucky; a loud *clang* was heard and the man in question swore loudly. A giant stone had collided with his breastplate and while it hadn't penetrated it had almost knocked the man off his horse, and the man's pained and bloody wheezing said that it may have done something to him internally as well.

 Yet another volley followed, and this one hit poor Edmund in the arm. He cursed again and rode at an even faster pace, being eager to destroy whoever was so accurately gunning for him. He needn't have worried as the enemy had apparently determined that the Hussars were much too close to use such antiquated weapons, and had put them away and mounted their horses. The man who was apparently their leader ordered them forward.

   Manuel was pleased to see that Leo had managed to score some hits on one of the "bird-men" (that is what the men had started calling them after seeing the wings on their backs).  He would have to subtract the misses of the other two from their pay ; after all incompetence should never be rewarded. But for right now he would have to focus on the battle ahead, and he was a bit disappointed to see the Leo had only wounded, not killed (although he could hardly blame the man, as slings were meant to cripple and main more than kill). 

  Paulos, Alexandros, Stephanos, and Phillipos all strung down their bows and let loose a volley. All four were highly trained archers and three of them got a hit (the fourth was a near miss, with the mark swerving out of the way at the last possible moment). The gleaming steel did its job and the posse of winged cavalryman retaliated with their own barrage- all but one of which either overshot their targets or undershot it; and that one collided with Basil’s chest, piercing the  Epilorikion but deflecting off the steel Lamellar.  The Byzantines let off another volley this one aimed slightly lower....

   Two arrows buried deep into their targets, causing the poor horses to screech with pain. The barbed point of a third tore up the legs of yet another horse, and the fourth made a small dent in one of the Hussar's breastplates. The Hussars broke into a gallop.  
      King Sobieski was both embarrassed and mortified by the brief arrow exchange. Embarrassed that almost every one of his Hussars were poor shots (save Marek, and his arrow did no damage) and mortified that his enemy were now targeting the horses. Exasperated and desperate to save their horses ("for what was a Pole without his horse?" thought the King), necessity forced him to order a charge a full 20 yards ahead of schedule. Lances were equipped as the Hussars rushed at full speed down the field towards their foes.

 Dominik,  Franciszka, and  Czeslaw all pulled carbines from their saddles as another arrow volley met the Hussar force head on. One arrow hit Sobieski's plated breast, knocking the breath out of him while a second a whizzed between Marek's arms, causing the relieved warrior to cross himself. The divine did not favor all of them however, and the remaining two arrows took down Konrad's horse, sending the man flying to the dirt. With a loud crack the Hussar landed on his head, horribly twisting his neck. The first kill of the day belonged to the Byzantines.
Byzantine Kataphraktoi: 10 Polish Winged Hussars: 9
 Feeling vengeful now, the Hussar fired their carbines into the Byzantine line, utterly devastating it. For the first time since their training had drilled them to be tough, merciless killing machine fear entered the Byzantine's hearts as the strange demon weapons took a huge toll. Leo's horse was shot out from under him; Romanos took a bullet to the stomach, which would be fatal in a couple of hours. Philippos got the worst and a bullet to the neck had knocked him from his horse.  He lay motionless on the ground, his eyes eternally fixed towards the cloudy sky.
 Byzantine Kataphraktoi: 9 Polish Winged Hussars: 9
   Manuel finally ordered his soldiers, save the two bowmen Paulos and Stephanos,   to charge as rain plummeted from the heavens onto the battlefield. The forces of Greek Orthodoxy and Catholicism collided in a brutal clash of arms that could only define a heavy cavalry engagement.   Constantine threw his kontarion at the unprepared Czeslaw, knocking him off his horse while two simultaneous Kopia lances produced the same effect on Romanos .  Three brittle kopia lances were smashed to pieces when their owner tried to force them through Byzantine horse armor while a Kontarion lance took out Marek's horse. Zygmunt's helmet was knocked off in the frenzied fighting.  Realizing that lances were not going to win the battle the Hussars threw them aside, took out their Szabra and Pallashes  and began slashing off the points of the kontarions. This likewise forced the Byzantines to abandon their lances- though instead of throwing them aside they threw them at the hussars. Pulling out their own Paramerions and Spathions they gave the Hussars what they were seeking, a duel. 
  The clash of swords soon ran afoul with the same problems that the exchange of lances had; namely lack of armor penetration. The Hussars were more skilled with the sword then the Byzantines but the latter had more in the way of armor. An enterprising and rather un-chivalrous Apolonius stealth fully approached the otherwise a otherwise occupied Demetrios from the rear (who was fighting Dominik), wrenched off the man's helmet and Mail Koif, and slit his throat, ear to ear. This successful move inspired the now blood-lustful and impressionable Edmund to try the same tactics; only to receive a dagger to his eye from his still aware foe after an intense grapple. 

  From the ground Marek tried to shoot out the horse of Alexandros with his bow, only for the arrow to deflect off the plate headpiece of the Nisean mount, though slightly denting it and causing the horse to neigh painfully. Alexandros, filled with rage unseen since the native Afghanis took his namesake's horse over 1500 years ago, charged the bowman. Pulling out a mace, he chucked it at his foe's head, fracturing his skull and knocking him unconscious. Alexandros did not end his charge though and the hooves of over 400 pounds of steel, leather, horse and man-flesh descended upon Marek's prone form, crushing him into Oblivion. 
Byzantine Kataphractoi: 8 Polish Winged Hussars: 7
     Manuel knew that with this much armor on the field he would need something that could penetrate. He also knew he could not retreat and regroup, as his opponent had both the defense of heavy Calvary and the speed of light .Byzantine military manuals had no specific strategy for fighting soldiers that exhibited the characteristics of both,   Raising his uniquely jeweled Spathion sword over his head  to flag his men, he ordered them to pull out their axes and maces. Unfortunately this also had the effect of letting the Hussars know who the Byzantine leader was.

 Mimicking their opponents, the Poles also sheathed their swords and began pulling out their own hammers and axes; though to Manuel's horror some instead opted for their pistols. Something impacted his shield, penetrating it but failing to go through his overcoat and nearly causing the emperor to fall off his horse. Manuel only just managed to right himself before a second bullet his him square in the chest, this one making it through every layer but his peristhethidion and leaving the Byzantine commander hanging  by a single stirrup. He gaze frantically wondered and he soon locked eyes with his assailant, who was the Hussar who he had earlier knocked the helmet off of. The Pole smiled at him and tossed the still smoking pistol aside, pulling out a much larger one-the carbine which he had declined to fire earlier- and took aim. Manuel knew without knowing exactly how he knew that this gun would succeed where the pistol had failed, and penetrate his armor. Closing his eyes and resigning himself to fate, he heard a loud *click* . The emperor opened his eyes once more only to see the Pole standing opposite of him looking upon his weapon with disgust; apparently the rain had made it inoperable. Not letting that faze him for very long he reached into his saddle to pull out his final pistol-only for a pzzzzt sound to interrupt that action. The dismounted Romanos had come to his leader's aid and hurled a dart at his would be killer, with such accuracy that it had penetrated deep into the forehead. The Pole fell from his horse without so much as a twitch. 

      Manuel looked at his savior and was about to promise him a reward when they got back to Constantinople when a Pole rode out from the melee and smashed him in the face with a wicked looking hammer, ending the career of a fine soldier.Manuel was both saddened to see his death and shamefully a bit relieved; at least now he wouldn't have to pay him. Elsewhere the news was similarly grim for the Byzantines; Constantine had had his left (shield) arm shattered by a couple of hammer blows, and great Alexandros had taken a bullet right to the face. Two layers of mail were not enough to save the young man from his fate, and  not for the last time the angel of death descended upon the battlefield to take another soul....
Byzantine Kataphraktoi: 6 Polish Hussars: 6
  On the other side Sobieski was having problems as well. Namely the two archers and lone slinger were pelting the Hussars with arrow after arrow, stone after stone. Dominick's horse was yet another causality because of a sling to the knee, and the King's own horse had taken an arrow to the side. Deciding enough was enough he rallied Francizka and Timoteusz to him, and charged the missile cavalry. 
 Meanwhile Apolonius was battering away at the already more-then-bruised Constantine with his Nazdiak. The exhausted Byzantine's defense was getting weaker and weaker, and a hammer blow to the chest winded him and caused him to cough up blood. Apolonius moved to end the fight with a final thrust to the heart with the beak of the horseman's pick, which managed to penetrate all layers of armor and pierce the lungs. Yet it did not enter his heart, as the Byzantine suffered from a rare condition where his heart was on the opposite side of his body. With a roar that sprayed blood everywhere and a renewal of strength, Constantine cut into the hand that had struck him with his Tzikourion, before moving onto the neck. Enveloping his anguished foe with his almost-useless shield arm he began pounding into the small part of the neck that wasn't covered by the gorget, spraying blood everywhere in the same manner that an inept and inexperienced executioner, unused to the feel of the axe, might have done. He managed to get three chops in before a bullet hit him in the chest and knocked him from the horse. Adrenaline drained from his body and soon he lacked the strength to breath, much less move.  A moment later Apolonius The Half-Decapitated followed him to the ground. 
Byzantine Kataphraktoi: 5 Polish Hussars: 5
       Hooves thundered and the byzantine archers (and Slinger!) fired off one final volley. Franciszka's horse was shot out from under him, though he managed to save himself by rolling off at the last second. He undoubtedly had bruises and maybe a fractured rib but both wounds were better than a broken neck. The remaining two horses collided with the Byzantines, and Paulos only narrowly blocked a crowing strike from the Nazdiak wielding Timoteusz with his own axe. The King of Poland tried a similar move with Stephanos, only for his blow to likewise get blocked with a Spathion. Sobieski had counted on this though and he pulled his hunting dagger from a sheath on the thigh and stabbed Stephanos in the neck with it. The chains wrapped around the blade, sparing him from death but moving the Koif around in such a way that his vision was now obscured. Angrily he swung the Spathion at the Pole, bludgeoning him hard while the Byzantine tried to correct his Koif. Finally he did so, though only the barrel of a flintlock pistol awaited his eyes. One loud *bang* later and another Byzantine found hit the floor. 

  Leo, throwing chivalry aside, tossed one more stone at the dismounted Pole, knocking him down, before taking out his Paremerion and slashing the horse of Timoteusz across the neck. Rearing up one more time, the horse fell to the ground, pinning its master beneath it. Leo stepped on the Hussar's arm to prevent him from drawing a sword, and then after catching the lance thrown towards him by Paulos , impaled the Pole through the neck with it. 
  His triumph was short lived, as Franciszka had managed to gain ground faster than the slinger had thought, and the Hussar avenged his friend's death by bringing his Czekan axe down upon Leo's neck. Though the chains prevented a decapitation, the force of the blow was such that the Greek's spinal cord was shattered, and the jugular and wind pipe were ruptured by the shock-waves sent through the neck. 
Byzantine Kataphractoi: 3 Polish Winged Hussars: 4
 While Manuel was busy battling Czeslaw, Basil was sparring with the grounded Dominik, who had taken out his Koncerz. More spear then sword, this weapon had almost the same reach that he had with his spathion, and was currently delivering punishing blows to his chest. Basil tried to throw a Bardoukion at him but the quick Pole pulled him off as he reached for it. Poised above him with his two handed Koncerz, Dominik attempted to finish the fight when a throwing mace came out of nowhere and collided into his stomach. Taking advantage of this godsend, Basil jabbed upwards with his spathion, scoring yet another neck shot. Dominik collapsed to the ground coughing up blood, while Basil rushed off to help his lord and savior Manuel. 

 Meanwhile Paulos was busy finding out why two was better than one, as the Sobieski and Franciszka combined pulled him off his horse. With their feet they pinned his arms to the ground, though not before Paulos managed to drive the spike of his Tzikourion into Franciska's ankle. Angrily the greatly offended hussar kicked up the Byzantine's coif, while Sobieski stood poised over him with a Koncerz, in the same position that Dominik was moments earlier. Unlike Basil, the only friends around him were dead so he could not expect help, and the King of Poland drove his point home, so to speak. 
Byzantine Kataphractoi: 2 Polish Winged Hussars: 3
    Manuel had been in a stalemate, with neither warrior able to get blows in upon each other, for the past five minutes. Other then briefly throwing a mace to help his sole remaining soldier, he hadn’t landed any blows. His opponent had landed a few, first with his szabra then one with the Nazdiak. The former had done nothing, failing to even get through the chainmail. The latter had knocked the wind out of him, but luckily the leather seemed to have cushioned the blow a bit, and so his organs had escaped relatively unharmed. 

    Czeslaw attempted to slam his hammer down on Manuel's crown but the emperor blocked it with his shield. A further attempt to commit regicide was foiled-but not by Manuel. Basil had grabbed him and pulled him off the horse, just like he had been only moments earlier. He put the Pole in a choke-hold and slit his throat with such skill and speed that only a Byzantine, famous for their duplicity and cut-throat politics in the medieval world, could naturally possess.

    Before any celebratory remarks or words of praise could be said, two gunshots were heard and Manuel felt the familiar sensation of gunshots impacting his back, only squared. Manuel did not have enough time to brace himself and he was swiftly knocked from his horse. While picking himself up he turned his head, and saw a mounted Sobieski and Francizka approaching (the latter of who had stolen Paulos's horse). Basil returned the favor by launching a dart into the skull of the Polish King's horse, sending him to the ground where he landed with a hard smack. Basil went after him as Manuel headed towards Francizka. The still mounted Pole attempted to charge and trample Manuel with his massive and massively armored Nisean mount, but the horse had other ideas..... Recognizing Manuel as one of the nice men that fed it the horse bucked, and threw off the unwelcome rider. Now pissed out of his mind Francizka picked himself up, eager to perform a gruesome battlefield execution, only to find himself the victim of one. Manuel swung  bardoukion into the crotch of the hussar, sending him onto his knees clutching the region. Manuel stepped behind the Hussar, and ended his misery with a mace blow to the back of his head.
Byzantine Kataphractoi: 2 Polish Winged Hussar: 1
     Manuel walked over to Basil, who was cautiously eying the prone enemy king while trying to determine if he was actually dead. He couldn't really tell if the man was dead, stunned or merely faking it. Basil, with the emperor's prodding, picked up a kontarion and cautiously advanced on the fallen monarch, planning to stab him in the face no matter what his state of being was. Perhaps sensing this, Sobieski pulled out his flintlock that he had been hiding under him and pulled the trigger. The battle had now turned into a duel. 
Byzantine Kataphractoi: 1 Polish Winged Hussar: 1

   The two monarchs eyed each other, one standing for Catholicism and one for Orthodoxy, both intent on surviving to lead their perspective kingdoms. Manuel made the first move by throwing one of his maces at the Pole, who narrowly evaded it. Kite shield in one hand and last mace in the other, he charged Sobieski, ramming him with the shield. Sobieski attempted to drive the spike of the hammer under the coif, but couldn't maneuver correctly in the cramped quarters that he now found himself fighting in.  Remembering his Greek Wrestling training, he tackled the Polish counterpart, pinning him down with the shield and superior weight. He began raining blow after blow down upon the head of his helpless enemy, and Sobieski could feel blood pour down from every orifice.  As the Cataphract prepared to smash his face in, the Hussar reached for his sole remaining flintlock, put it up to the skull of Manuel and pulled the trigger.

Ending 1:

Nothing happened. Smiling and silently thanking god, Manuel brought the literal hammer down upon Sobieski's face, crushing it and hopes for Hussar victory. Manuel sat on the ground, breathing deeply and heavily for a moment before noticing torches in the distance. A whole army of them. Thoroughly panicked at the prospect of fighting an army of these tough foes he mounted his Nisean steed and sped off south towards Greece. 

Epilogue 1: 

       The year of 1683 was a dark one for the Austrians and indeed the rest of Christian Europe. Vienna fell and with it the capitol of the Holy Roman Empire. Encouraged by this the Ottomans, led by Grand Vizier Kara Mustafa Pasha, pushed deeper into Europe, capturing Venice in 1684 and penetrating Bavaria the next year.  It was here that the Vizier heard the fateful news that would change the history of his empire, and Europe forever.  First Orthodox Greece and Thrace, then Armenia, Georgia, the Balkans and other Christian parts of the empire had risen up in revolt, led by a enigmatic figure who claimed to be "The Last Emperor of the Romans", in accordance with an ancient legend that he prophesied he would one day return. In a bold move he had captured the relatively unguarded Istanbul during a victory celebration, renamed it Constantinople, and executed the Sultan Mehmed IV and his heirs for "illegally conquering and  occupying my kingdom". Whoever the usurper was he was thorough, and every member of the Sultan's direct family was dead and buried in a week, along with any hopes of a peaceful succession. Already dozens of second cousins and people who claimed to be illegitimate children of the late sultan were popping up all over the empire, all claiming the now vacant throne. The grand vizier of the formerly great Ottoman Empire was left in the middle of a Christian Europe, surrounded by hostile states and without a supply line. 

 The grand vizier was lost in melancholic thoughts when a second messenger came arrived, this one from "Emperor"  Manuel Commenus( for what reason he had taken the name of a 11th century leader was a mystery to the Vizier) came to him with an offer that he literally could not, for the sake of himself and his men, refuse...

   Like a phoenix, the Roman Empire had risen from the ashes (again), and a new period of warfare and eventual glory had just begun. 

Byzantine Kataphracktoi:
Polish Winged Hussars:
Long Range:
Mid Range:
Close Range:
Extremely close Range:
Horse Breeds:
Armor: Helmet:
Horse Armor/saddle:
X-factors: Tactics:
Rules of combat:
Martial Arts:

       We often think of the horse and the rider as two separate entities- and that is true away from battle.  On the battlefield the man and horse are but two halves, and, as the famous Polish saying goes, “A Pole without his horse is a body without his soul”. Unfortunately for the Hussars this maxim was true here, and the lack of horse armor ultimately cost them this battle, as their horses fell time and again from Byzantine missiles and lances.Once dismounted the hussars were in trouble as heavy Calvary smash through lone infantrymen.  Nor was gunpowder a decisive factor, though it was a boon. A lot of people have this false perception that guns equal automatic victory against those without guns. This is false (at least up to the invention of repeaters). King Gustav of Sweden, when forced to fight Hussars in the Thirty Years War, chose to deploy archers against them INSTEAD of his more numerous musket tottering soldiers. In Japan muskets were only truly decisive in the battle of Nagashino, and gun tottering troops lost to non both before and after that battle. In addition people often forget that the musket wielding side on that battle was led by the man who was one of the greatest tacticians and military commanders that Japan ever produced while the other was led by a man some consider inept. The American Great Plains is another example, where Native Americans were able to defeat settlers/soldiers/ angry mobs time and again with only their bows. But  I digress. Horse armor, in addition to superior training and armor in some places, are what gave the Kataphractoi the day. Going by a purely weapon standpoint, the Hussars probably would have won, but I, unlike DW, do not go by weapons alone. X-factors such as discipline and armor are both proven winners of battles and certainly in the former the Byzantines had a sound edge. I know the majority of you expected a Hussar victory, and maybe pissed at me for not delivering one, but I stand by my decision. Both are great warriors, both the elite of the elite , but in my opinion the hussars are slightly better. 

Long range:
Sling: 6 Hunnic Composite bow: 56
Luk: 4 Wheelock carbine: 78
Mid Range:
Kontarian: 34 Marzobarboulon: 38 
Kopia: 16 Flintlock: 101
Close Range:
Spathion: 23 Paremerion: 20
Koncerz: 20 Szabra: 17 Pallash: 16
Extremely close range:
Daggers: 5
Hunting dagger: 2
Tzikourion: 54 Maces: 193
Nazdiak: 131 Czeckan axe: 44
Trampling: 109
Trampling : 35

Byzantine Kataphracktoi:
The sling scored six kill direct, most of which were facial shots or from shooting out the horse of a galloping Hussar. Had a lot of assists for its ability to break bones, particularly the horses.
The bow got fifty six kills, some from an odd neck shot, more from shooting out horse while galloping. Great dismounting tool.
 The kontarian could dismount someone, either by pushing them off or by killing the horse, but rarely got a kill itself. Most of the 34 kills this weapon got were neck stabs.
 The Marzbarboulon was a powerful dart, defiantly got some horse kills and could be aimed accurately into the face. 38 kills
Both swords lacked the ability to penetrate armor, and almost all of the kills you see above are either from slashing throat or hacking off legs.
Due to the closeness required to use this weapon, the dagger only got 5 kills.
The bludgeoning properties of the Tzikourion, as well as the neck choppin axe-head, netted it 54 kills.
The Byzantine mace was the best weapon here, able to be thrown and inflict gruesome blunt force trauma on anything it hits. In addition the prodigious skill of the Byzantine with this weapon ensured that it nabbed a whopping 193 kills.
 Due to the number of horse destroying weapons in the Byzantine arsenal, the hussar was often grounded and thus susceptible to trampling attacks OR attacks that were gained as a direct result of a shock cavalry charge.

Polish Winged Hussars:

The only kills the Luk got on the heavily armored Cataphracts were the result of divine intervention.

 The Wheelock carbine often jammed or failed in bad weather, but it still got a respectable 78 kills, and shot out his horse a couple of times as well.

Great at pushing people off their horse, the Kopia needed divine assistance to kill and was lucky to have gotten 16 kills.

 The mass amount of flintlock pistols (almost 5 per person) plus the ability to penetrate some parts of the Byzantine armor (particularly the face) nabbed it 101 kills.  

 You really had to grapple with the Byzantines to open up a conceivable point to slash into, and the armor was too strong to stab though, hence the low amount of kills in this category.
Due to the closeness required to use this weapon and the rareness of it, the hunting knife only got 2 kills.
The Czeckan axe was powerful, and won the Hussars fourty-four kills. Not as good at dealing with enemy armor as the Nazdiak is.
This weapon was so deadly it was banned from Poland several times, and in the match it really showed how it won such infamy. With a 131 kills, this weapon did even better then the firearms.
Polish Hussars didn’t trample much, as the lack of armor made their horses a bit vulnerable while doing so. Still got 25 kills.

 Well I hope you enjoyed this battle with its shock ending, and I cant wait to see you next time for Sarah Kerrigan vs. Anakin Skywalker. The Tyrantess of the Starcraft universe takes on the man who destroyed a 25,000 year old order, and ushered in the age of a evil empire. 



    But seriously, you just raised the bar yet again for DW matchups. Not since iHonk's comparison of Alex vs. Atilla was I so entertained by the battle. I guess I figured your system wrong, and it's my fault for thinking about this possibility.

    I didn't say earlier that Byzantium would necessarily win, but I though they deserved more of a chance than I thought you had given them. I guess my reasoning about archers vs. cavalry contained a grain of truth after all, as the French and Hungarians learned vs. the English and Mongols. So many nuances made this sim great, from the details of the rain to changing the names to true people (good move) to Marek's inclusion (LMFAO)and most of all the surprise ending.

    This was easily the best I have seen from you, and through the ending you have broken the mold yet again for matchups. Matches like these are the reason I decided to start writing again.

  2. Really great match here. The Byzamtium warrior bio was beyond believe for me. Didn't see their victory coming, but they proved themselves in the end. Heavy cavalry is always an interesting subject.