Late Roman infantry bows

Field of Glory II is a turn-based tactical game set during the Rise of Rome from 280 BC to 25 BC.
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Late Roman infantry bows

Post by Nijis » Fri Mar 09, 2018 12:42 am

Does the 20% bow give you any capabilities? I haven't been able to turtle up and nickle-and-dime enemy cavalry, which is what I was hoping to do.

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Re: Late Roman infantry bows

Post by Ludendorf » Fri Mar 09, 2018 12:48 am

I think it gives an impact bonus? Going to check the manual; I know it is in there somewhere.

'Late Roman units with only 20% bow cannot distance shoot. Instead the bows are treated the same as Darts in providing an impact POA against enemy charging the unit.'

Yeah, it's an impact thing similar to darts. Not sure how darts work exactly.

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Re: Late Roman infantry bows

Post by SnuggleBunnies » Fri Mar 09, 2018 12:54 am

+100 if charged. +66 if charged by heavily armored troops. Since all troops with darts also have light spear, they are effectively +200/166 if charged, +100 when charging.

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Re: Late Roman infantry bows

Post by Ludendorf » Fri Mar 09, 2018 12:55 am

SnuggleBunnies wrote:+100 if charged. +66 if charged by heavily armored troops. Since all troops with darts also have light spear, they are effectively +200/166 if charged, +100 when charging.
Yikes. That's terrifying.

Wait, nevermind. +200 is the same value for impact foot.

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Re: Late Roman infantry bows

Post by Nijis » Fri Mar 09, 2018 2:41 am

That makes sense. Thanks!

I'd be curious to know why late Roman foot was rated light spear and not defensive spear. My impression was that they fought in ranks are were primarily used defensively. Maybe it's because they represent the transition between 1-2c Roman offensive infantry and later Byzantine spear formations?

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Re: Late Roman infantry bows

Post by nikgaukroger » Fri Mar 09, 2018 6:05 am

Nijis wrote:That makes sense. Thanks!

I'd be curious to know why late Roman foot was rated light spear and not defensive spear. My impression was that they fought in ranks are were primarily used defensively. Maybe it's because they represent the transition between 1-2c Roman offensive infantry and later Byzantine spear formations?
More or less.

The evidence from Ammianus and Vegetius shows/suggests that use of the sword in combat as opposed to a spear in hand remained the usual way of fighting, especially against infantry. However, overall the approach seems to have been less aggressive than earlier infantry, hence LS and not IF. In fact, since you mentioned Byzantines, this remained true in the description of infantry in the Strategikon which is dated to around 600AD - it is only later that the infantry became "spearmen" (e.g. described in Leo's Taktika).

FWIW I think there is an argument that the best palatine infantry could still qualify as Impact Foot.
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Re: Late Roman infantry bows

Post by Nijis » Fri Mar 09, 2018 4:18 pm

Thanks for the answer!

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Re: Late Roman infantry bows

Post by Gwaylare » Sun Mar 11, 2018 4:21 pm

SnuggleBunnies wrote:+100 if charged. +66 if charged by heavily armored troops. Since all troops with darts also have light spear, they are effectively +200/166 if charged, +100 when charging.
[/quote]
Thanks for explanation, I was wandering about those stats.
Ludendorf wrote: 'Late Roman units with only 20% bow cannot distance shoot. Instead the bows are treated the same as Darts in providing an impact POA against enemy charging the unit.'

So I feel the documentation is not precise in this point. Because like SnuggleBunnies stated Darts just do have an effect in combination with light speers. It should be:
'Late Roman units with only 20% bow cannot distance shoot. Instead the bows are treated the same as Light Speers and Darts in providing an impact POA against enemy charging the unit.'

To be honest it would be much better understandable, if those units would be equiped with 100% Light Speers and Darts and those 20% Bows just mentioned in the documentation somewhere to be historic accurate.

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Re: Late Roman infantry bows

Post by Witan » Mon Mar 12, 2018 3:52 pm

and those 20% Bows just mentioned in the documentation somewhere to be historic accurate
It would be interesting for me to know if this bows and even the darts really only were used against enemy charges and not offensive?

Why there is not the option to use the bows (even its only 20%) as offensive distance weapon?

In the new skirmishes (late romans vs late romans) i often have the situation where on both sides legio comitatenses are
standing opposite each other and nobody wants to charge, because of the strong defensive ability when charged.

I think it would be more interesting, if both sides could shoot on each other in this situation where otherwise nobody would do anything and the legions just look at each other...

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Re: Late Roman infantry bows

Post by Ludendorf » Mon Mar 12, 2018 5:24 pm

I'm sort of contrasting this to Pike and Shot Campaigns with the Attached Light Guns units. That represented 16th century units with light cannons attached to them, but they could still get the bonus on the charge.

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Re: Late Roman infantry bows

Post by w_michael » Mon Mar 12, 2018 6:51 pm

Ludendorf wrote:I'm sort of contrasting this to Pike and Shot Campaigns with the Attached Light Guns units. That represented 16th century units with light cannons attached to them, but they could still get the bonus on the charge.
You do not receive the +50 Impact POA in P&S for attached guns if charging.
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Re: Late Roman infantry bows

Post by Ludendorf » Mon Mar 12, 2018 7:03 pm

w_michael wrote:
Ludendorf wrote:I'm sort of contrasting this to Pike and Shot Campaigns with the Attached Light Guns units. That represented 16th century units with light cannons attached to them, but they could still get the bonus on the charge.
You do not receive the +50 Impact POA in P&S for attached guns if charging.
Really? Whoops. I thought you did. Sorry.

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Re: Late Roman infantry bows

Post by MikeC_81 » Mon Mar 12, 2018 11:41 pm

nikgaukroger wrote:
Nijis wrote:That makes sense. Thanks!

I'd be curious to know why late Roman foot was rated light spear and not defensive spear. My impression was that they fought in ranks are were primarily used defensively. Maybe it's because they represent the transition between 1-2c Roman offensive infantry and later Byzantine spear formations?
More or less.

The evidence from Ammianus and Vegetius shows/suggests that use of the sword in combat as opposed to a spear in hand remained the usual way of fighting, especially against infantry. However, overall the approach seems to have been less aggressive than earlier infantry, hence LS and not IF. In fact, since you mentioned Byzantines, this remained true in the description of infantry in the Strategikon which is dated to around 600AD - it is only later that the infantry became "spearmen" (e.g. described in Leo's Taktika).

FWIW I think there is an argument that the best palatine infantry could still qualify as Impact Foot.
There isn't any real reason not to count late Roman infantry as Impact Foot at all. There isn't any real evidence of a significant drop off in quality, just a change in mindset of the avoidance of pitched battles and taking the tactical defensive once engaged in battle. Most real world replicas of these pumbatas indicate that they perform better, and at longer ranges, than pilums doing the same job and you could lob them in preceding a charge just like pilums.

There is also the exceedingly strange issue of costing where Legio Palatinas and Comitatensis are costed the same as Roman Legionaries and Imitation Legionaries yet are simply straight up worse with no offsetting benefits. I'll hold further comment for now till the beta signups occur and maybe air out my current issues with game balance in a more private setting.
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Re: Late Roman infantry bows

Post by TheGrayMouser » Tue Mar 13, 2018 12:43 am

There is also the exceedingly strange issue of costing where Legio Palatinas and Comitatensis are costed the same as Roman Legionaries and Imitation Legionaries yet are simply straight up worse with no offsetting benefits. I'll hold further comment for now till the beta signups occur and maybe air out my current issues with game balance in a more private setting.
They are equally as good on the defense versus infantry ( except versus armoured and up, which would be rare, I suppose in theme) and they are better by up to 100% versus cavarly ( again when on the defense) So I suppose those are the trade offs.

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Re: Late Roman infantry bows

Post by MVP7 » Sat Mar 17, 2018 8:36 pm

TheGrayMouser wrote:
There is also the exceedingly strange issue of costing where Legio Palatinas and Comitatensis are costed the same as Roman Legionaries and Imitation Legionaries yet are simply straight up worse with no offsetting benefits. I'll hold further comment for now till the beta signups occur and maybe air out my current issues with game balance in a more private setting.
They are equally as good on the defense versus infantry ( except versus armoured and up, which would be rare, I suppose in theme) and they are better by up to 100% versus cavarly ( again when on the defense) So I suppose those are the trade offs.
Too bad the cavalry's chances against the Palatinas/Comitatensis seem to be so low that the AI just won't attack them most of the time. It might move right in front of the unit but then just waits for the player to attack (and it's almost always the player who's fighting against the time) and that usually means 40-60% chance of loss at charge.

I'm currently playing a campaign with the first Roman list with Palatinas/Comitatensis against the later Bosporan list and it is not a pretty match-up for me. The Bosporans always force me into aggressive but reactive gameplay with their numerous skirmishers and overwhelming cavalry. Almost every battle so far has consisted of me taking heavy losses and losing cohesion after being forced to charge Bosporan cavalry with the defensive heavy infantry while my own cavalry and skirmishers are slaughtered while desperately trying to prevent the enemy from shooting and flanking my infantry. I have still managed to win every battle but it's by far the bloodiest campaign I have played.

Not being able to use the bows for shooting (no matter how ineffective they would be) kinda defeats the purpose of a turtle unit since the great defensive capabilities are somewhat pointless when you can't force the enemy to attack you.

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Re: Late Roman infantry bows

Post by SnuggleBunnies » Sat Mar 17, 2018 11:01 pm

are you maxing out your massed auxiliary archers? They are very powerful. You could also try to use light artillery vs the cavalry.

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Re: Late Roman infantry bows

Post by MVP7 » Sat Mar 17, 2018 11:26 pm

SnuggleBunnies wrote:are you maxing out your massed auxiliary archers? They are very powerful. You could also try to use light artillery vs the cavalry.
Yeah, I have all one of the bow auxiliaries and light artillery that I have had a chance to buy so far (4 battles done) :D. Those Auxilia Sagittariorum are probably my favourite new unit in the Legions Triumphant but this particular Roman list heavily relies on heavy infantry that can no longer really be relied on.

It just seems kinda silly that, in the last battle for example, my Legios spend the entire battle staring at cavalry parked right in front of them while getting pelted by the enemy light infantry. I couldn't respond to the ranged fire and I could not do anything but charge at the cavalry, which seems to completely defeat the entire point and purpose of the reformed Legionaries with the attached archers. Over the whole campaign not once has any of my Legio units been directly attacked by enemy units. Instead I was forced to initiate every melee, the only bright side being that these units are so awful at charging cavalry that the cavalry never bothered to evade.

The 20% bow units would function much more like they realistically should if they were able to use their bows for ranged attacks. It wouldn't even have to be a good ranged attack, the equivalent of what light horse archers have would be sufficient. They just need something to force the enemy to go on the offensive as I suspect those bows were historically meant to function.

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Re: Late Roman infantry bows

Post by Ludendorf » Sat Mar 17, 2018 11:33 pm

One trick I've found is to mix in cavalry with my infantry and also to throw out limitanei and skirmishers in front of my lines (with horse archers and archers on rough ground beside the infantry that don't have skirmisher support). The limitanei keep the worst of the arrows off you, while the skirmishers and archers decimate the skirmishers and cav while taking cover behind your cheap heavies. The cavalry and limitanei then engage the enemy (who are less likely to evade) allowing the infantry to then follow up and strike the killing blow.

This is admittedly multiplayer, but it seems to work well against the Huns. I'm not sure how well it'll go with the AI. The exposed limitanei are also rather vulnerable to enemy foot; this is an anti-cavalry formation.

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Re: Late Roman infantry bows

Post by MVP7 » Sat Mar 17, 2018 11:53 pm

There are certainly ways to work around it but my main issue is that the Legio units in the game end up being a easily ignorable toothless defensive units, the very thing that the bows should be preventing it from becoming. They suffer from the very weakness that the bows are specifically supposed to mitigate.

They wouldn't need to be killers with the bows or even do enough damage to consistently cause cohesion loss with concentrated fire. They just really need to be able to do a little bit of damage so that enemies can't just stand right in front of them for several turns with complete impunity and force the player to throw away even the defensive bonus that the now otherwise pointless bows provide.

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Re: Late Roman infantry bows

Post by TheGrayMouser » Sun Mar 18, 2018 2:38 pm

MVP7 wrote:There are certainly ways to work around it but my main issue is that the Legio units in the game end up being a easily ignorable toothless defensive units, the very thing that the bows should be preventing it from becoming. They suffer from the very weakness that the bows are specifically supposed to mitigate.

They wouldn't need to be killers with the bows or even do enough damage to consistently cause cohesion loss with concentrated fire. They just really need to be able to do a little bit of damage so that enemies can't just stand right in front of them for several turns with complete impunity and force the player to throw away even the defensive bonus that the now otherwise pointless bows provide.
They have the same POA versus attacking shock cavalry ( lancers) as do earlier impact foot legions which is ZERO... And they are better defending versus lancers... I dont think they need ahistorical fire power to go chasing down lancers..

As for the AI getting stuck in front of them, thats a differnt problem. Havnt run into that yet ( I usually enjoy playing the nomands vs the AI)

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