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A few general questions while I wait for the rules  

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GavinP
(@gavinparnabyhotmail-com)
New Member Customer
Joined: 3 days ago
Posts: 2
18/10/2020 4:03 am  

Hi, I've spent the past week or so assimilating information from the sources available, looking at as many blog reviews, forum posts and such that I can to understand as best one can without the rules themselves. I've a few questions which may be answered within the rules but apologies, I'm too eager 🙂

1) In a battle which has elements of a division but not the divisional commander, would I be right in placing those in a Corps reserve formation directly under the Corps Commander, or do we assume someone "acts up" to divisional commander?

2) With Peninsular British there are no corps generally. Is a force a division, with brigades as formations or is the army the force, with the divisions as formations?

3) I've seen a lot about reformation areas and was wondering how people track fatigue etc. I'm thinking of using just a generic sized/shaped MDF base with micro dice holders on it, to track the fatigue level of the formation per class, the formation directive and also the number of units currently reforming? This seems to me to allow fairly quick and easy recording of pertinent factors in a relatively straight forward manner? OK, it's not that aesthetic but markers on tabletop are not that big an issue if they don't make the tabletop cluttered IMO?

4) I'm planning on using my 6mm figures currently based using the Polemos 60x30mm standard bases. (Bad mistake, one I wish I could take back!). Infantry I won't be varying for size as I can't, will the game suffer if I use 30x30mm artillery bases for a battery or should I use 2 to make them the same width?

5) Speciality companies? Do I need to worry too much about these or can I just assign them prior to game start and not have a specific base for them?

6) This question will almost certainly be resolved by having the rules but... I understand that forces get objectives, and formations get directives. Is there anything stopping a force being on an attack objective and all its formations being hold or defend etc? Is there any "If on attack you must make at least 50% of your troops move forward at full speed" kind of rules?

7) The formation reserve, appears to only ever have artillery in it? Do you never put infantry or cavalry there? You'd just create a new battle wave to essentially operate as the reserve?

 

Thanks in advance. Looking forward to giving this ruleset a go.

 

 


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David
(@david)
Designer Admin
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 273
18/10/2020 9:36 am  
Posted by: @gavinparnabyhotmail-com

I've a few questions which may be answered within the rules but apologies, I'm too eager

No problem, happy to assist. Looking over the questions, one thing to keep in mind is that many of them are really scenario design questions, which simply means there will be multiple ways to solve them based on each specifics and personal preferences.

Posted by: @gavinparnabyhotmail-com

1) In a battle which has elements of a division but not the divisional commander, would I be right in placing those in a Corps reserve formation directly under the Corps Commander, or do we assume someone "acts up" to divisional commander?

Here's a good example of a scenario specific question: In the context of the battle, is the whole division there and the assigned commander is just ill/dead/otherwise absent? Or, is a portion of the division present and the division command is with other elements elsewhere?

The solutions are pretty straight forward – 1) You could either have the division's subunits (brigades I presume) act as their own Formations, assigned to the Force Commander, or 2) You could have the division present as a Formation without a named Formation Commander (i.e. no cmdr stats but otherwise functions normally), or 3) If your campaign system (which you mentioned using in the other thread) is tracking details such as which brigadier is senior and what his ratings ought be when promoted, you could simply list that individual as commanding the division and use their stats.

Which is most appropriate really depends on the scenario specific context, but those would be the options.

Posted by: @gavinparnabyhotmail-com

2) With Peninsular British there are no corps generally. Is a force a division, with brigades as formations or is the army the force, with the divisions as formations?

Generally speaking, the British Army is *small*. The result is that until ~1813-1814, in most engagements the British Army is a single Force commanded by one player. There are a couple of historical exceptions, and additionally, the British Army generally fights with a Spanish contingent which would, most of the time, constitute a second Force.

For example, at the historical battle of Talavera you could have:

Army Commander: Wellesley

Force Commander (British): Wellesley

• 4 Infantry Formations (Divisions 1-4)

• 1 Artillery Formation (could likely be distributed)

Force Commander (British Cavalry): Payne-Gallwey

• 3 Cavalry Formations (Brigades 1-3)

Force Commander (Spanish): Cuesta

• 1 Mixed Formation (Avant Garde)

• 5 Infantry Formations (Divisions 1-5)

• 2 Cavalry Formations (Divisions 1-2)

This would give you three players on the Ango-Spanish side of the scenario: One acting as both an Army and Force Commander, two others playing was Force Commanders. British cavalry use in the Peninsular War is always a bit of a "what was it in this instance" organization, so without dealing with how it was utilized and assigned during the historical battle, and only looking at its order of battle, the above example would work. There may also be a case for simply placing each of those brigades directly under the British Force Commander. What would be very uncommon (nearly unheard of?) in the British army would be massing all of the cavalry into a single Formation.

Bussaco is a very different battle in that there are no Spanish… Bussaco is a somewhat awkward game to wargame simply because it is really four-five French players (Masséna* as Army Commander, Reynier, Ney, Junot & Montbrun* as Force Commanders) vs one British player (Wellington) with a ton of Formations. This probably sounds ridiculous because of how unwieldily it would be – and it would if not running a fairly static defense… but that is what Wellington was doing. At other engagements it is not strange for him to assign someone to be 'senior' over their own and other Formations just as occurs in the Army's of other nations, and in those situations such a group could be considered a Force of its own.

*Generally speaking unless it is a huge engagement, I would give one Force to the Army Commander. A cavalry corps is a good option as they won't be in the thick of it for the bulk of most games.

Posted by: @gavinparnabyhotmail-com

3) I've seen a lot about reformation areas and was wondering how people track fatigue etc. I'm thinking of using just a generic sized/shaped MDF base with micro dice holders on it, to track the fatigue level of the formation per class, the formation directive and also the number of units currently reforming? This seems to me to allow fairly quick and easy recording of pertinent factors in a relatively straight forward manner? OK, it's not that aesthetic but markers on tabletop are not that big an issue if they don't make the tabletop cluttered IMO?

Some people use tabletop markers – dice are common, poker chips or similar 'chits' are common; other people use a roster sheet to avoid the tabletop clutter with a column where you can simply mark 'I', 'C', 'A' for Fatigue of infantry, cavalry, or artillery. Some people hate tabletop markers, others hate rosters, it really just depends on your personal preference. Quite a few people us dice holders on their Reformation Areas as you suggest.

Posted by: @gavinparnabyhotmail-com

4) I'm planning on using my 6mm figures currently based using the Polemos 60x30mm standard bases. (Bad mistake, one I wish I could take back!). Infantry I won't be varying for size as I can't, will the game suffer if I use 30x30mm artillery bases for a battery or should I use 2 to make them the same width?

Generally speaking, an artillery battle is meant to take up nominally similar frontage to an infantry battalion. While there was a historical differential… double is a lot. You'll probably find using two will be most straight forward, but there is nothing wrong with trying each and seeing how it goes for you.

Posted by: @gavinparnabyhotmail-com

5) Speciality companies? Do I need to worry too much about these or can I just assign them prior to game start and not have a specific base for them?

While you could apply them prior to the game, eventually you are going to find instances where you want to be able to assign them during the game. There are also situations where a Specialty Company can do something without being assigned to a Unit – For example, you can consume a French sapper company or Russian pioneer company to remove artillery Fatigue as they are filling in for combat losses and exhaustion amongst the artillery personnel. There are also scenarios where Specialty Companies may be used in specific ways – such as to save or destroy a bridge (common in 1809 scenarios between the French and Austrians).

Posted by: @gavinparnabyhotmail-com

6) This question will almost certainly be resolved by having the rules but... I understand that forces get objectives, and formations get directives. Is there anything stopping a force being on an attack objective and all its formations being hold or defend etc? Is there any "If on attack you must make at least 50% of your troops move forward at full speed" kind of rules?

To clarify: An Objective is not 'attack', an Objective is a destination, like "Town X". A Directive is Attack [A] or Defend [D]. So a Force will be given an Objective – generally by the Army Commander (a player) – for example: Town X. When/if the Force Commander (a player) activates any Directive that causes one of their Formations to move (Attack [A] or Move [M]), the Formation *must* move towards the Objective within the requirements of their Directive. Both Attack [A] and Move [M] require a Formation to move at its full movement rate (there are situational exceptions for proximity of the enemy, mixed movement rates of component Units, etc…).

So the Army Commander (a player) could issue and activate an Objective of "Town X" for a Force Commander (a player). But nothing requires the Force Commander to issue any Directives. They could just sit there. That's between players. However, if the Force Commander activates an Attack [A] or Move [M] Directive for one of their Formations – that Formation is going towards Town X.

Posted by: @gavinparnabyhotmail-com

7) The formation reserve, appears to only ever have artillery in it? Do you never put infantry or cavalry there? You'd just create a new battle wave to essentially operate as the reserve?

Depends a little on what you're referring to when you say 'reserve'. The Formation Reserve is the area directly behind the rear battle wave of a deployed Formation and it contains any Specialty Units and any uncommitted artillery batteries which are part of that Formation.

There are (often) historical elements labeled as 'reserves' either at the corps or army level. In scenarios, the elements of these historical reserves are typically designated as "available for attachment/reinforcement" meaning that they are a pool which may be distributed to the different Formations or Forces to bulk up whatever the players feel needs bulking up.

Posted by: @gavinparnabyhotmail-com

Thanks in advance. Looking forward to giving this ruleset a go.

No problem! Hope you enjoy!

-David


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