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Author Topic: using unprotected horse archers  (Read 249 times)

aphilla

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using unprotected horse archers
« on: May 22, 2019, 10:22:20 PM »

Flexible cavalry, unprotected.  How do you make use of them?

I have them in the early Sassanid list.  When I get to byzantines, I will have Huns, who have the added value of being melee experts.

Thoughts?

stuuk

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Re: using unprotected horse archers
« Reply #1 on: May 22, 2019, 10:31:32 PM »
in skirmish (SuG) order if they can be shot at. In TuG order if they cannot be. Presume they have missile weapons.
Don't get them into combat unless you have flanks or are desperate.

mad lemmey

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Re: using unprotected horse archers
« Reply #2 on: May 23, 2019, 04:34:31 PM »
Flank March on their camp also upsets people.

Simon Meg-Meister

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Re: using unprotected horse archers
« Reply #3 on: May 30, 2019, 08:27:37 AM »
Carefully  ...  they are not easy to use.
As I will no doubt prove at SkullRollers in a months time (Huns)

Ride them straight down the table edge on both sides can also be fun.
enemy can't afford to let them get past as they will reform and create mayhem in the rear even if Unprotected.
Still tend to be red/white at best.

S
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aphilla

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Re: using unprotected horse archers
« Reply #4 on: June 15, 2019, 12:58:10 AM »

Can't wait to hear how it goes with the Huns.....

Simon Meg-Meister

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Re: using unprotected horse archers
« Reply #5 on: June 19, 2019, 10:00:18 AM »
Came 3rd in Preston with them.

Here is brief synopsis.

1. Invaded every time and used the Loose Nobles or the 2 foot TuGs to gain some ground.
2. Stayed loose in the open vs. foot enemy - to move you away they have to charge you and they cannot use shield cover. Gives you maximum firepower. The skilled ones can make a mess given a few repeated shots.
3. Worked flanks heavily in two games - in the third it was head on as we had a coast and a city and a wall of Trojan targets. Luckily we shot well.
4. MOST IMPORTANTLY.  I used ROUGH terrain whenever facing enemy mounted or close order foot.  It slows the speed at which you get pushed off table and your shooting doesn't degrade in the terrain. I planned to use HILLS against Loose foot as then we can hold the hills and stop and advance.
5. Flank marches can work, but I didn't try one in any game as the terrain was not good for them. But if it was I probably would have done so in game 2 and 3.

I was actually rather unlucky in game 1.  My talented wing command picked up all white and black twice, and only got 1 coloured card in its first 16!  It was my main attack wing too so it gradually got destroyed by Early Arab Conquest.  On the other flank though we worked around and caused mayhem.  Both flanks were open enough to make use of mobility. So got a 8-15.

I got a 12-12 vs. Champa.  Great fun game.  Flanks blocked by terrain. Very difficult army to face as at range the artillery shoot me and close up the javelins get me.  Being unprotected is a nightmare. I think I got some luck in this game to hold on to 12-12 and not get 10-15.

I got a 15-8 vs Mycenaen Greeks. Wall of spears between the sea and a city - very historical. Robin had no choice but to try to charge me off table or it was a slow death of white dice from the skilled vs. the guys with shield cover. A great example of where rules+scoring forces games and results when other rules would create a boring draw.  He pushed hard and I got the better of the shooting vs. evading - but only just.  Twice he was within a BW of catching my Huns so it could have gone the other way easily.

So far my view is the same.  Competitive armies but very hard to use well. 

S
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aphilla

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Re: using unprotected horse archers
« Reply #6 on: June 20, 2019, 02:59:13 PM »

Thanks for the detailed report.

I still have one question - this is a good analysis of when most of your army is composed of these.  I'm wondering about when you've got just one or two units.

And now I think of it one other question - it strikes me these are probably better in units of 6 than 4, but would like to hear from experience about that.

badhabum

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Re: using unprotected horse archers
« Reply #7 on: June 20, 2019, 07:27:37 PM »
Yes Simon, your huns managed, but from your own account, SKILLED shooters helped a lot .

I think if you try without skilled shooters, the result might be different or with cantabrian which gives a -1 when SK or run away .

So bow cavalry armies need either some shock troops or some skilled shooters that are not cantabrian . That's my point of view .

nikgaukroger

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Re: using unprotected horse archers
« Reply #8 on: June 20, 2019, 07:51:05 PM »
IMO cantabrian troops are perfectly good suppliers of the skilled shooting, discounting them as you are is, IMO, a mistake.
"The Roman Empire was not murdered and nor did it die a natural death; it accidentally committed suicide."

Simon Meg-Meister

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Re: using unprotected horse archers
« Reply #9 on: June 20, 2019, 10:17:10 PM »
As with a lot of MeG army design what you want rather depends on thinking ahead of how you want to use them.
So if I only have one or two I will be inclined to use them to race round a flank, in which case 4s is fine.
Cantabrian is a fine half way house and would have done great vs the foot armies, less so vs. mounted.
As you go from a few flexibles to all-flexibles my overall view is that your tactics need to get increasingly radical to succeed.

S
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badhabum

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Re: using unprotected horse archers
« Reply #10 on: June 21, 2019, 09:38:33 AM »
IMO cantabrian troops are perfectly good suppliers of the skilled shooting, discounting them as you are is, IMO, a mistake.

 I do not discount them, they will shoot, at least once but the chances are high that they get caught as there is a 50% chance they are slowed down when skirmishing .