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May 30 16 7:21 AM

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 If one is trying to produce ECW rules I am sure there needs to be a mechanism to produce the uncontrolled advances to which undisciplined horse were prone. I am not keen on the ideal hat simply says, Royalist cavalry did this, Parliamentarian didn't.  But I think, particularly if reproducing a historical encounter, there should be a simple way of doing this. In the rules at present, units successful in melee must occupy the ground of their defeated foe, so we have a start.  Perhaps the simplest thing would be that for troops prone to uncontrolled advance (identified in the scenario),if they draw a card of 5 or higher in their next activation, they must continue straight ahead and engage any enemy unit in their way. Anything lower they remain under control. Picking up on an idea posted elsewhere, victorious cavalry units MUST be the first ones activated in a command. For a second move it would be 4 or higher, and so on. That is, once you have started to pursue, it becomes increasingly difficult to stop.  If pursue off the field, then normal rules for re-entry apply.  Does anyone have any thoughts as to this idea?  The first card number could be adjusted as a result of play testing. Troops engaged in pursuit could be identified with a suitable marker, an extra one added for each move they continue to pursue.

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#1 [url]

Jun 2 16 7:19 AM

Sorry missed this Andrew.

I would very much like to have a cavalry pursuit mechanism in the ancient rules, too. When I have time later today/tomorrow I'll give it some thought and post your suggestions and any ideas I might have on the ancient board here for comments.


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#2 [url]

Jul 29 16 7:33 AM

For everyone's interest, here's the latest wording of the pursuit rules from the ECW draft rules:-

Should a unit of horse destroy an enemy unit in melee, then it must “pursue.” Place a pursuit marker on the unit (a cavalry figure on an arrow-shaped base would be perfect).
During the rest of the turn in which the pursuit marker was placed, the pursuing unit can only be activated to charge (or if there are no suitable charge targets, then move forward) one or two boxes. This move can include diagonals and might potentially take the unit over an edge of the battlefield. This activation can fail in the normal manner, ending the command’s turn.
At the start of each new player turn, all pursuing units within a command must be activated to charge/move forward before any other units in that command can be activated. Should the player wish to cease pursuit he may attempt to activate the unit for a second (or third/fourth/fifth etc.) time in the turn. Any successful activation after the first mandatory one, other than a charge activation, ends the pursuit. Such an activation could be to move, to rally or even to shoot.
Pursuit markers are also removed when a pursuing unit charges an enemy unit but fails to destroy it, leaves the battlefield or reaches impassable terrain that it cannot bypass.
NB victory medals are not surrendered for units that pursue off the battlefield.

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#3 [url]

Jul 30 16 8:08 AM

Good to see, just two points to consider (or reject out of hand!)

1- The move in pursuit, you have said that if the pursuing unit charges it can do so forward or diragonally, OK so far. However if the unit moves only during a pursuit would it be worth confirming that the move can only be directly forward otherwise it is too much control,over a pursuing unit to diagonally edge it towards a combat zone/camp.

2- I do not have a view of the rules so cannot comment on the different cavalry types. However the rule as written does not specify gallopers or trotters so as it stands all cavalry are equally easy to control or lose control of. Possibly these characteristics should appear in the army lists to keep the main rules simple. Possible rules for such could be allocating two pursuit markers as discussed elsewhere or for poorly controlled troops such as Royalist gallopers or French Gendarmes to draw two cards to halt pursuit and use the least favourable. In the case of particuarly well disciplined troops (naturally Cromwells Ironsides come to mind) draw two cards and select the most favourable of the two.

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#4 [url]

Jul 30 16 11:43 AM

Hi Sidley,

1. I don't mind the player having some limited control over it; steering pursuers towards a camp would be very appropriate! :-)

2. Re the ECW rules I toyed with having a modifier to make it harder to pull-up "Swedish" charg-y horse. I took it out before publishing the play-test version because I felt that it was a little too complex and that by later in the war I wasn't confident that there was a lot of difference between cavalry on the two sides, except perhaps the Ironsides. Might need to put something back in, later. :-)

In the ancient rules I might extend it to fanatics.

Best, Simon

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#5 [url]

Jul 30 16 3:07 PM

Well, one of the last major ECW battles was Naseby, where the Royalist horse went haring off after Iretons wing whilst Cromwells Ironsides were kept well in hand. Now Rupert keep his horse in hand so they attacked simultaneously with the infantry centre then all control was lost. Now it could be argued it was Rupert as the commander who lost control or it could have been the troops themselves who were out of control once they were released into,the initial charge. So even as late as 1645 there was an issue with Royalist horse. However it might be appropriate to put that into the army list or even create very specific generals to be foot or horse generals who can only command that troop type. Rupert could be superior except that troops under his command would suffer a minus to rally from pursuit.

This general personality rule could give generals like Hopton or Waller the ability to redeploy troops after initial dispositions to reflect their superior generalship. Or generals good at selecting ground could move terrain pieces. With lists of fairly similar troop types, giving special rules to generals is a way of giving armies more character so rather simply early or late royalist or parliamentarian plus new model you could have Hopton, Waller, Eastern Association, the army of Oxford, Newcastles army etc

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#6 [url]

Jul 31 16 3:32 AM

Yes by the late war it seems more like a command and control thing than a difference in the troop types. The Royalists didn't seem to have an uncommitted reserve on that wing, which cost them dear.

It would indeed be good to recognise and differentiate the exceptional generals of the war. Will give some thought to that!

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#7 [url]

Jul 31 16 6:54 AM

You could even throw in a generic general random abilities table o,roll before deployment
eg Royalist cavalry general 1-3 impetuous (a negative on rallying from pursuit), 4-5 no change, 6 disciplinarian (easier to rally pursuers)
Parliamentarian cavalry commander 1-2 disciplinarian, 3-5 no change 6 impetuous.

Naturally other characteristics could be there eg Timid - need to,activate the general before you activate any units in his command.
Aggressive - must activate the general,or he will always charge with units in his command when possible

Just a few random ideas although admittedly these might be more suitable for a campaign setting than a straightforward battle of a club evening.

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#8 [url]

Aug 1 16 12:27 AM

Yes, useful in a campaign setting. Andrew and I have been talking (in very general terms) about a campaign setting.

I have been toying with activation bonuses- like activation penalties (ie difficult terrain) but positive. A +1 (or +2) bonus on charges for an aggressive general might work very well, or the opposite for his timid equivalent. Such modifiers could also be applied to a particular unit in a scenario- I was thinking about the Swiss, yesterday, for the Italian wars. A +1 modifier on movement and charges might be right up their valley. Also such a bonus it could incorporate the "drilled" +1 that the Romans have on manoeuvres.

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#9 [url]

Aug 1 16 1:06 AM

The bonus by unit is very characterful and easy to put into army lists. I'm liking that bonus for Swiss, possibly the +1 to move should only be if they are moving towards the nearest enemy or camp, with a corresponding -1 if they are moving closer to their own board edge to reflect their grudging reluctance to leave the battlefield.

The penalties to activate in difficult terrain would make sense for formed troops and if there were no penalties for more agile troops that would encourage the historical use of certain troop types in difficult terrain. In the ECW the use of dragoons in difficult terrain or detached musket such as at Cheriton (Alton)1644 when 1000 commanded muskets were sent into the woods.

I would also be interested to see how you are depicting forlorn hopes. Possibly a single unit only of detached musket who give no victory medals when destroyed (to reflect the throw away nature of that troop type).

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#10 [url]

Aug 1 16 6:04 AM

Hi Sidley,

We have some of the smaller musket detachments as markers, that can shoot and have a 50% chance of being removed. They can be quite frustrating for the owner, as they restrict the movement rate of the cavalry to which they are attached. In my last game they were a pain but I was unlucky with their shooting.

There are larger units with one or two hits, too.

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