Rules Variant: Attack from the March (Partial Deployment)

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Claudius
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Rules Variant: Attack from the March (Partial Deployment)

Post by Claudius » Fri Jul 24, 2009 5:55 am

I have been experimenting with some rules mods which allow dynamic meeting engagements/attacks from the march, and which also break the "set-piece" battle paradigm which the Field of Glory rules seem locked into.

The rules variations are simple, and open up many dynamic tactical situations. Instead of waiting until all the "parts and pieces" BG are placed on the board 25% at a time, the "Charge, Move, Shoot, ..." turn cycle begins after 50% of each force is placed on the board. Commanders may be placed at any time during the deployment phase.

After placing the second 25% of his BG, the 1st player may now charge, move, ... in the usual sequence with the 50% of his pieces on the board. Then the 2nd player puts down the second 25% of his BG, and begins his normal turn sequence. The remaining two 25% of the BG are then placed prior to the "Charge" phase of the player's next two turns. And so, "attack from the march" is expressed.

Taking the initiative with initial "meeting engagement" attacks against threat deployments; seizing key terrain; or maneuvering BG initially placed tactically incorrectly is possible—as opposed to having those "lost" BG dumbly sit there. If BG are out of place as the armies arrive from the march, those BG would begin to adjust as in actual combat. CV, LH and LF BG can exploit their speed to challenge deploying threat BG immediately. As can Kn at times.

This rule variation changes FoG from a chess-like game to a more dynamic battle game. The games unfold quickly and differently than with the static set-pice deployments. The skirmisher/"covering force area" battles tend to be sharp and decisive. Mounted BG can exploit gaps in the deploying threat formations, or in the case of swift-moving LH archers sometimes disrupt the deployment.

You also might want to experiment with structuring your armies differently than for the set-piece battles.

Try these variations, see what you think, and report back here.
Cheers!

Ne bibere venenum in auro!

deadtorius
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Post by deadtorius » Fri Jul 24, 2009 2:30 pm

so the first player has a numerical advantage since he has more troops on the table during his first move, but then the opposing army brings on their next lot and you might find yourself in a sudden bad situation where that open space you were heading for suddenly fills up with enemy troops?

I think most ancient battles were pretty much set piece but it might be interesting to give it a try. Someone once told me they thought most ancient battles were started by hours of lights pelting javelins and slings at each other before the main part of the army started to move forward.

I will see what Blathergut thinks about that one.

hazelbark
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Post by hazelbark » Fri Jul 24, 2009 5:43 pm

Interesting. I would limit only one commander per 1/4 in your plan. The IC can lead from the front or not as history has many variations.

I think FoG can allow a lot of adaptablity for different options that could be fun.
In a differnt set of rules we brought on troops 1/4 1/2 1/4 vs 1/3 1/3 1/3. Created minor but not serious imbalances.

Claudius
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Post by Claudius » Sat Jul 25, 2009 4:22 pm

I have looked at a number of historical battles over time. Not all battles were set-piece affairs, where everyone could neatly line up. Meeting engagements and attacks from the march occurred. For example, at bridges, road junctions, ambush sites or when one force unknowingly reveals its location to another.

Yes, there are risks in attacking and moving early, but there are also opportunities.
The first player has the option to move and attack first—if he desires to do so.
Opponents may be forced to break their deployment plans, key terrain seized early-on, and initial combats may establish strong positions.

The more aggressive players should enjoy this approach. It allows the action to get rolling right away, without first going through the entire deployment process.
Cheers!

Ne bibere venenum in auro!

marioslaz
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Post by marioslaz » Sat Jul 25, 2009 9:00 pm

This is interesting also for a scenario of ambush to a column in march. Do you remember Varo?
Mario Vitale

Claudius
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Post by Claudius » Sat Jul 25, 2009 10:58 pm

Exactly.
The abrupt piling on of forces during a ambush could occur via meeting engagement rules.

The Battle of the Teutoburg Forest (described as clades Variana by Roman historians) took place in A.D. 9 (probably lasting from September 9 to September 11) when an alliance of Germanic tribes led by Arminius, the son of Segimer of the Cherusci, ambushed and destroyed three Roman legions led by Publius Quinctilius Varus. [Wikipedia]
Cheers!

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