Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 26
  1. #1

    Lightbulb Stationary Missle attacks = gimp?

    Stationary missile attacks can attack an adjacent area (non-diagonal.) In the case of archers, this seems to be seriously understimate the point and utility of these ranged weapons. The purpose of missile weaponry was to wither and weaken the enemy before melee engagement. With only one area of range, archers are fodder for every other unit type, with a paltry last shot before getting ganked. The only hope they have is that they hit, and rout the enemy before they get engaged. In addition there is no way to protect your archers with a line of pikemen or infantry, due to the one unit per area rule. Unless I'm mistaken archers were typically fielded with infantry or pike in defensive support. The archers would make their volleys and if threatened with advance would move to within the protection of said units.


    Indeed not all archer units are fielding meticulously trained longbowmen as the English did in the Hundred Years War, a la Crecy, Agincort, Poiters or Halidon Hill. However, these battles showed that the true power of medieval combat lay in the massed volleys of these longbowmen, NOT the over-romanticised heavy armored cavalry/footmen. The English longbowmen dominated in their custom formations such as the three-battles formation. They were only truly outdone when caught unprepared such as the Battle of Patay

    I realize everyone is entitled to use and disuse whatever rules they want so I am thinking of making the following additions for my house rules:

    Adding a special muster/training option for archers.

    Advanced Archery (or call it whatever). Archer units with Advanced Archery may shoot up to two areas in the Stationary Missile phase. Any shots taken beyond one area incur a -2 range penalty. Advanced Archery units who take the field before their enemy can plant sharpened stakes to help ward of charges, giving a bonus of +2 Defense against charges. Unit modifier: +1 range, +2 Defense vs Charge. +2GB muster cost, additional optional requirements, see below.

    Additional requirements. Due to the years of training involved, A formal decree requiring every able bodied man to practice on a regular basis should be required before any province can muster these units. Furthermore, I use the Variant: Building musters rule, any unit with this training takes twice as long to muster as its cost.

    This unit would have the following cost: (correct me if I'm wrong)

    Base Unit: Archer, 0.5GB, +0 Melee, +2 missile, 2hits, move 1 ,+2 morale
    Armor: Light: 0.5GB, 12 Defense
    Experience: Veteran +2GB, +2 Melee, +4missile, 0 hits, 1 move, +4 morale
    Training: Advanced Archer +2GB, +1 range, +2 def vs charge(possible unit swap, see below.)

    **I understated the veteran training values to demonstrate the attention to archery training, skimping on other areas**

    Total, 5GB (musters as 10GB if you use the variant build muster) +2 Melee, +6 missile, 2 hits, 2 move, +6 morale.
    Special: +1 range, +2 missile vs Cavalry, possible +2 def. vs. charge. (Possible unit swap.)

    Personally, I can only see Anuirean units having this sort of training, but thats me.

    I'm also considering adding an element to the training that allows the archers to take advantage of other units for protection. Such as, if the archer unit is put in a situation where it gets its "last shot" before melee, and has at least one movement left, it can defer that shot and instead be replaced with an unengaged and adjacent infantry unit behind it, which is probably in the reserve. The unit to be swapped with must be readied for this purpose. The archers must spend the next action reforming before it can return to the field after it does this.

    So what do you guys think. Am I missing something about archers that makes them not as gimpy as I think? Or does the advanced archery training seem fair and/or balanced to better reflect an archer unit, namely a longbow(maybe crossbow....maybe) equipped one's capabilities?

  2. #2
    Site Moderator AndrewTall's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Chelmsford, Essex, England
    Posts
    2,305
    Downloads
    25
    Uploads
    0
    I'd say elves and dwarves should also have any elite missile rule-sets - I've long wondered about a 'dwarven wall' analogous to the 'british square' formation but using crossbows - they have the discipline for it...

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Whammydill View Post
    Stationary missile attacks can attack an adjacent area (non-diagonal.) In the case of archers, this seems to be seriously understimate the point and utility of these ranged weapons. The purpose of missile weaponry was to wither and weaken the enemy before melee engagement. With only one area of range, archers are fodder for every other unit type, with a paltry last shot before getting ganked. The only hope they have is that they hit, and rout the enemy before they get engaged. In addition there is no way to protect your archers with a line of pikemen or infantry, due to the one unit per area rule. Unless I'm mistaken archers were typically fielded with infantry or pike in defensive support. The archers would make their volleys and if threatened with advance would move to within the protection of said units.


    Indeed not all archer units are fielding meticulously trained longbowmen as the English did in the Hundred Years War, a la Crecy, Agincort, Poiters or Halidon Hill. However, these battles showed that the true power of medieval combat lay in the massed volleys of these longbowmen, NOT the over-romanticised heavy armored cavalry/footmen. The English longbowmen dominated in their custom formations such as the three-battles formation. They were only truly outdone when caught unprepared such as the Battle of Patay

    I realize everyone is entitled to use and disuse whatever rules they want so I am thinking of making the following additions for my house rules:

    Adding a special muster/training option for archers.

    Advanced Archery (or call it whatever). Archer units with Advanced Archery may shoot up to two areas in the Stationary Missile phase. Any shots taken beyond one area incur a -2 range penalty. Advanced Archery units who take the field before their enemy can plant sharpened stakes to help ward of charges, giving a bonus of +2 Defense against charges. Unit modifier: +1 range, +2 Defense vs Charge. +2GB muster cost, additional optional requirements, see below.

    Additional requirements. Due to the years of training involved, A formal decree requiring every able bodied man to practice on a regular basis should be required before any province can muster these units. Furthermore, I use the Variant: Building musters rule, any unit with this training takes twice as long to muster as its cost.

    This unit would have the following cost: (correct me if I'm wrong)

    Base Unit: Archer, 0.5GB, +0 Melee, +2 missile, 2hits, move 1 ,+2 morale
    Armor: Light: 0.5GB, 12 Defense
    Experience: Veteran +2GB, +2 Melee, +4missile, 0 hits, 1 move, +4 morale
    Training: Advanced Archer +2GB, +1 range, +2 def vs charge(possible unit swap, see below.)

    **I understated the veteran training values to demonstrate the attention to archery training, skimping on other areas**

    Total, 5GB (musters as 10GB if you use the variant build muster) +2 Melee, +6 missile, 2 hits, 2 move, +6 morale.
    Special: +1 range, +2 missile vs Cavalry, possible +2 def. vs. charge. (Possible unit swap.)

    Personally, I can only see Anuirean units having this sort of training, but thats me.

    I'm also considering adding an element to the training that allows the archers to take advantage of other units for protection. Such as, if the archer unit is put in a situation where it gets its "last shot" before melee, and has at least one movement left, it can defer that shot and instead be replaced with an unengaged and adjacent infantry unit behind it, which is probably in the reserve. The unit to be swapped with must be readied for this purpose. The archers must spend the next action reforming before it can return to the field after it does this.

    So what do you guys think. Am I missing something about archers that makes them not as gimpy as I think? Or does the advanced archery training seem fair and/or balanced to better reflect an archer unit, namely a longbow(maybe crossbow....maybe) equipped one's capabilities?
    I like where you are going with it. I agree that Elves, dwarves and Anuireans make the most sense. Of course, once other cultures see the advantage of long ranged bowmen they would most likely copy. I wouldn't let any human archers start with his advanced training, but allow them to upgrade the unit.

    I just worry about their balance vs. Engineers. These improved archers cost one more gold bar but have better melee, defense, move and moral. You hire engineers for other reasons but many bring them into an army because of the two ranged ability, which would go away.

    A balance might be that these units can never be simply trained from scratch but train as archers then improved afterwards. I like the stakes idea also, but almost any unit could use stakes. Perhaps another upgrade that allows any foot based unit to get a +2 vs cavalry charge on their home turf for an additional gold bar.

    Goodjob.

    -BB

  4. #4
    good points. I agree that elven and dwarven units can have variations of this. However with the elven units having the capability, their likely hood to field these units isn't as high as Anuirean. In my mind the elves prefer forest action over the open field that would favor the longbow. This doesn't mean they can't or won't though.

    This training is best balanced using the build muster rule, 10gb muster time, even though it only costs 5gb means you aren't seeing this unit any time soon. especially if you don't have any high law holdings. ESPECIALLY if you only have guild or temple holdings.

    I can totally see how this infringes on the engineers turf. However its my personal opinion that this because the battlemap as it is, is too small. But it is what it is. I'm open to changes in the size of the map, to beefing up artillery a little in my game. I'm cautious on changes though becuase it tends to make a buttefly effect and you wind up changing the entire dynamic eventually.

    Maybe change the dynamic of the training then? Cost more? Cost more to muster, but count as less for upkeep? Owing to the cost of training being the expensive part, but upkeep is no different than any other unit

    In my original draft of the Advanced Archery, I was going to require that Advanced missile training be required to have it. However in order to have two trainings, you have to be elite, and I can't see units coming out of the box, elite.

    Another thing I was considering is, the longbow was considered by many armies as unchivalrous especially the French. Giving that joe schmo peasant could kill mr expensive knight too easily. Sour grapes to be sure, but a valid point from their own point of view. Given that Birthright is big on *great deeds* and such to advance bloodline levels...etc. I was pondering making any resounding victory where advanced archers are a signifigant factor disquallify for such a *great deed*
    Last edited by Whammydill; 09-01-2007 at 07:41 PM.

  5. #5
    A bit of longbow-fanboyism here.

    Dwarves make little sense with advanced archery, but that's just me, even crossbows would tend to be problematic for their sizes.

    And while these battles you listed were indeed great victories, they happened in situations where the English army had command of the battlefield before the battle, and had the time to actually protect their longbowmen. Presenting Patay as some kind of weird exception forgets that they were also dependent on engineers prior to the battles (surprise should affect them badly), and that almost every time they were flanked, or faced with artillery (which is would be less powerful in the field), the French won. And Agincourt could easily be put away the same way as Patay, namely that it was a stroke of luck that the field narrowed on the english side at Agincourt, preventing the french cavalry from flanking .
    And as Commynes noted, longbows needed numbers, huge numbers (at Agincourt, they were about 80% of the English force) - I frankly doubt a single company of longbowmen would have a similar kind of effect, but then again, all armies are so small here. Maybe they could have a bonus for massed fire (there is a square effect to fire, IIRC - and stacking 30 standard units of archers with a line of pikes would also probably have that effect, only no one raises 8.000 soldiers, nor the opposition 25.000; although it's true the basic rules do not allow stacking, even if I remember a number of PBEMs allowing it).

    The costs seem reasonable, but could be slightly upped, given that three longbowmen (non-militia; the county militias were not of the same calibre at all) would cost as much as a lance in the early Tudor period.
    Last edited by Gwrthefyr; 09-02-2007 at 03:10 AM.

  6. #6
    Excellent points Gwrthefyr! The English were extremely longbow heavy. Alot of their victories were a combination of good choice of battlefield, preparation, and sheer luck. It can hardly be disputed that the longbow pretty much closed the book on the knight of yor, though. I just need to find a good, fair dynamic for representing such dedicated archery in Birthright. I'm too much a toxophilite to resist.

    I may go down the massed fire route, maybe allow the longbow unit a diagonal shot instead of increased range. Then if more than one unit shoots at a unit, they can aid another or something I dunno. I'll keep cracking at it. Keep the ideas comin!

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Whammydill View Post
    Excellent points Gwrthefyr! The English were extremely longbow heavy. Alot of their victories were a combination of good choice of battlefield, preparation, and sheer luck. It can hardly be disputed that the longbow pretty much closed the book on the knight of yor, though. I just need to find a good, fair dynamic for representing such dedicated archery in Birthright. I'm too much a toxophilite to resist.

    I may go down the massed fire route, maybe allow the longbow unit a diagonal shot instead of increased range. Then if more than one unit shoots at a unit, they can aid another or something I dunno. I'll keep cracking at it. Keep the ideas comin!
    The knight of yore survived the hundred years wars in France, though - they were still heavy cavalry obsessed until the 17th century, with half the standing army being heavy cavalry in the 16th century (and most of the rank and file being nobles until the last Valois kings) - if anything, the french magnates were defeated by the Valois kings' artillery after their little succession problem was solved. In England, the passing of the knight is easily attributable with the hecatomb of the nobility during the wars of the roses.

    The long range could also be used for a diagonal shot (that's how it was done with long range units in Gorgon's Alliance).
    Last edited by Gwrthefyr; 09-02-2007 at 03:32 AM.

  8. #8
    Damn gunpowder! just makes war so....impersonal. Good information! I had forgot about the mechanics of war in the PC game, my CD's were lost long ago.

  9. #9
    Site Moderator kgauck's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Springfield Mo
    Posts
    3,562
    Downloads
    2
    Uploads
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by Whammydill View Post
    Indeed not all archer units are fielding meticulously trained longbowmen as the English did in the Hundred Years War, a la Crecy, Agincort, Poiters or Halidon Hill. However, these battles showed that the true power of medieval combat lay in the massed volleys of these longbowmen, NOT the over-romanticised heavy armored cavalry/footmen.
    If archery is so marvelous, why is it so unique to the English? Why don't we see Scottish, French, Spanish, Germany, Italian, and so on companies of archers, and why don't we see them winning battles?

    The answer is two-fold. One part is that the English victories were very much due to factors apart from weapons and very much questions of leadership and the cohesion of leadership. Both Edward and Henry had (during the time of their victories) a group of friends and relations who were very talented. During the rest of the Hundred Years War, longbows or not, there are no great victories and obviously, the war was never won. Second, there were dramatic technological changes that happened to longbows in the generation before the start of the Hundred Years War. There was an interesting article in Scientific American about 10 years ago based on (then) new archeaological evidence. In D&D terms, its like before, say 1300, only longbows were available, and after 1300 in England, composite longbows with strength bonuses became available.

    Its because of this interpretation that I have ruled that only among the Rjurik are composite longbows martial weapons, and are exotic weapons for all other peoples. Likewise (for the guy who was going to post about how the mongols of the same period also had military success with bows) the Khinasi have compound shortbows as martial weapons and everyone regards them as exotic weapons.

    In this way, any power might have elite archers. But only the Rjurik can have elite archers with composite longbows, and only a well organized realm forced by a PC regent can produce the kind of well coordinated court associated with Edward or Henry, and produce the total package.

    The mighty longbowmen was a distinctivly English fighting man. The French tried and failed to devise their own archery arm to match it. Likewise the same type of excellent unit could only be Rjurik.

  10. #10
    Senior Member RaspK_FOG's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Moschato, Athens, Greece
    Posts
    1,130
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0
    Dwarves should not receive advanced archery benefits in my mind, as the weapon of their choice would be either the throwing axe (with hardly any range on a flat field) or the crossbow, which lacks a lot in terms of range.

    However, always keep in mind that realism should be the province of individual DMs: in my games, I prefer using racial preferences in the form of different rarities and proficiencies.

    Under such a system, bows (what games call "shortbows" ) are widespread but require some competence to use, and most people who are proficient with them are the Khinasi, the Rjurik, the Sidhelien, and maybe the Vos for hunting before winter comes - there are Anuireans, for sure, and maybe a few Brecht who are competent with a bow, but Kharamul should rarely bother with such devices: arrows are not quite as enticing in the caverns and the thrushing mountain winds... Crossbows, on the other hand, are of particular interest to the Anuirenans, Brecht and Kharamul, as they suit their preference and environment a lot. The Khinasi are the only ones I can imagine using a composite bow, and the longbow seems almost explicit to the Rjurik.

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Similar Threads

  1. dream attacks
    By kgauck in forum The Royal Library
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 12-27-2003, 07:25 AM

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
BIRTHRIGHT, DUNGEONS & DRAGONS, D&D, the BIRTHRIGHT logo, and the D&D logo are trademarks owned by Wizards of the Coast, Inc., a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc., and are used by permission. ©2002-2010 Wizards of the Coast, Inc.