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Beginner Questions

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Beginner Questions

Post  henridecat on Tue Jan 27, 2009 3:25 pm

Copy of discussion on Yahoo group
=======================================================================
Dear Forum,

Having just received my copy of Kriegsspiel from TFL, I am very
impressed with the colorful presentation of the rules and the
beautiful maps. However, I am also slightly depressed with all the
things I cannot find in the rules, or that I find lacking.

I guess I expected the rules to be a bit more clear, with some
modern help, and not just a translation - after all I am not a
Preussian officer, and have, despite some military knowledge a lot
of problems understanding many things in the rule set.

So, to help myself and to be able to ever convince anyone to play
this game, I hope that there are a few people in the forum that can
help me with a bunch of questions. It IS a bunch of questions, but
unfortunately, this is just scratching the surface of the many pages
of questions I could put down on paper.

I know that there might be many ways to play this, which depends on
the umpire, however, having not tried this before, I find it
difficult to just improvise solutions, and I hope that someone can
give me hints as to what is `normal' procedure.

So here goes a long list (sorry):

So here goes a long list (sorry):

1. Movement:
How long does it take to change formation eg from column to line, or
any other formation?
What about preparing arty, doesn't (un)limbering take time?
Can units move and change formation in a 2 min interval?
Can units move and fire?
Can units retreat directly through friendly/enemy units?
Are there anything like `stacking limits'?
Can battalions split up and each half move freely?
Can skirmishers operate autonomously?
Do retreating skirmishers go into their battalion forcing it to
retreat?
Are there any kind of restrictions to how far two half-battalions or
eg skirmishers and their battalion can be separated?
Are there no fatigue effects? Do units operate 100% all the time?

2. Line of sight
Something that really attracted me to KS is the fact that there is
an umpire, allowing the players to have limited knowledge. However,
nothing is mentioned in the rules concerning visibility or line of
sight.
When can enemy units be seen? And by who?
When do enemy units appear on the board?
Does altitude – eg positioning of the players `character' or some
units on a hill or the like – help in any way to see further?
Can enemy movement be observed (maybe dust?) or heard at a distance,
or behind a hill, even if out of sight?

3. Fire resolution
Related to the above: Can you ever shoot over friendly/enemy units?
I would expect so, if infantry or artillery is placed on a high
location. But then, how much higher must they be?
Can you fire through friendly/enemy units?
Is there some sort of restriction to fire arc – eg 45 or 90 degrees –
or can infantry/arty shoot in all directions? (I guess not)
Must units fire at closest enemy unit, or can enemy units be singled
out? (guess not)
Can a unit `wheel' and fire, if enemy not in `fire arc'?
Is there any kind of `rate of fire' – for inf and for arty?
Is firepower not affected by formation? I would expect the effect to
be very different if a battalion fires when it is in line, and when
in attack column. Cannot see it in the rules.

4. Assaults
What happens if opposing units `bump' into each other (which of
course can happen when movement is simutanous)? Do they fight?
What happens if opposing units assault each other at the same time,
which I could also imagine to happen once in a while? In the rules
it appears that there is always a defender and an attacker in
assaults, which would not fit here. Also, it seems in the rules that
an attacker would declare an assalt and that a defender could then
choose to `retire'. What does it actually mean that they `retire'?
How far do they fall back? And in a simultaneous movement, how can
this actually be done in practice?
When an enemy unit is forced to retreat, will the winning unit
always pursue? When, and when not?

5. Orders
Can a player order a scouting unit to `report back' "all the time",
or will they only report back when requested, or when
something `happens'? Is there a limit to how many messengers and
scouts can be active?
Nothing is mentioned in the rules concerning `player' location on
the battlefield, which I believe is very critical. I understand that
anything within 900 paces can be given orders immediately. The rest
I am not sure. Is the player/commander (?) located with a unit or an
individual piece, and can the player giver orders and move around on
the battlefield at the same time?
How accurate will a scout report be?

…hmmmm… I better stop here. :-)

I can think of many, many, many more questions. I know that this
forum is by no means a service to the game, so I apologice, but
would be very grateful if anyone could help me along with this game
that I think I could love.

Are there really no general up-to-date rules out there, that someone
has written down. If so, posting them on eg BGG would be a major
push forward for this system.

Okay, all for now. I am desperately hoping for some help here.

Rasmus Larsen
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henridecat

Posts : 133
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Re: Beginner Questions

Post  henridecat on Tue Jan 27, 2009 3:25 pm

=======================================================================
Rasmus also posted his questions on the TwooFatLardies website, where a number of us have responded. Should anyone wish to see the answers, why not take a look there?

Martin
=======================================================================
G'day Rasmus

The Kriegsspiel can be a bit intimidating if you are not already a bit
of a Napoleonic buff.

How knowledgeable on things Napoleonic are you?
If you haven't had much exposure to the minute of the period, you may
want to have a look at George Nafziger's "Imperial Bayonets" - probably
more than you ever wanted to know about manoeuvring Napoleonic units
(which is basically what KS is about).

I shall attempt to answer some of your questions below...

> Having just received my copy of Kriegsspiel from TFL, I am very
> impressed with the colorful presentation of the rules and the
> beautiful maps. However, I am also slightly depressed with all the
> things I cannot find in the rules, or that I find lacking.
>

DN: Bear in mind the KS "rules" are written to guide an umpire not to
handle two players playing face to face in the style of a boardgame.
Also as you say they are assuming the umpire and players have a shared
base of knowledge (that of a trained Prussian officer).

The main requirement to Umpire KS is that you know a little more than
the players and that the players trust you to be fair.

Have you looked at the various advice pieces on: www.kriegsspiel.org.uk

> 1. Movement:
> How long does it take to change formation eg from column to line, or
> any other formation?

DN: have a look at the appendix (p 53 of the TFL version) formation
changes take as long as the furthest part of the unit taked to march
there. Most take less than 2 minutes according to a quick check of
Nafziger.

> What about preparing arty, doesn't (un)limbering take time?

DN: It does take time - a minute of two (guns less, howitzers more)

> Can units move and change formation in a 2 min interval?

DN: Generally no (or not much) it depends on how easy the change.

In general units take more time in real life to get things done as
officers need to decide what to do and then pass the instructions down
the command structure, before the manoeuvre starts.

> Can units move and fire?

DN: Within a 2 minute "turn" generally no. The fire rates assume
several volleys over the two minutes. Simpler to assume they either
shoot or move.

> Can units retreat directly through friendly/enemy units?

DN: Usually not through enemy - demoralised troops forced to retreat
into an enemy unit are more likely to surrender.

Retreating through friends - if the friends have time to prepare a
"passage of lines" then yes, if not the the two units will be
disorganised and the retreating unit will take longer to rally.

> Are there anything like `stacking limits'?

Effectively, yes. See the Apparatus chapter (p 12-22 of the TFL version).

Each block represents the frontage on the unit it models, but is quite
a bit deeper (for practical reasons). For example you can fit four
squadrons of cavalry in a close column in the space of one squadron block.

> Can battalions split up and each half move freely?

DN: Subject to being able to issues orders to both and normal military
prudence, yes.

> Can skirmishers operate autonomously?

DN: as most skirmishers are drawn from a battalion's third rank a
commander would not send them far from their parent battalion -
detached operations are the forte of the Jager.

> Do retreating skirmishers go into their battalion forcing it to
> retreat?

DN: they would usually fall back and rejoin their parent battalion,
but the battalion would generally not be required to retreat.

Skirmishers are expected to fall back if under pressure. so the
battalions behavior would depend on the threats as seen by the battalion.

> Are there any kind of restrictions to how far two half-battalions or
> eg skirmishers and their battalion can be separated?

DN: If a half battalion is operating under orders of its own it could
go anywhare the orders required. In general skirmishers remained
within 300 paces or thereabouts of their parent battalion.

> Are there no fatigue effects? Do units operate 100% all the time?

DN: Usually for simplicity, yes. However this sort of thing is up to
the umpire and may be part of the scenario (special idea).

> 2. Line of sight
> Something that really attracted me to KS is the fact that there is
> an umpire, allowing the players to have limited knowledge. However,
> nothing is mentioned in the rules concerning visibility or line of
> sight.

DN: Line of sight is mostly derived from close study of the map for
each case - once you are familiar with the way topography is modelled
on the map you are using it is usually easy to tell if a portential
line of site exisits.

> When can enemy units be seen? And by who?

DN: Have a look at this link for distances:
http://www.kriegsspiel.org.uk/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=138&Item\
id=87
Generally troops not under cover may be considered invisible beyond
3500 paces in good conditions.

> When do enemy units appear on the board?
DN: on the umpires map all the troops are on the map at all times.
If you have full maps for the players the enemy troops

> Does altitude – eg positioning of the players `character' or some
> units on a hill or the like – help in any way to see further?

DN: Yes, you need to consider the position of the unit on the map

> Can enemy movement be observed (maybe dust?) or heard at a distance,
> or behind a hill, even if out of sight?

DN: Depending on the weather (defined in the scenario) dust can be
seen - cavalry generate taller dust clouds than infantry.


> 3. Fire resolution
> Related to the above: Can you ever shoot over friendly/enemy units?
> I would expect so, if infantry or artillery is placed on a high
> location. But then, how much higher must they be?
> Can you fire through friendly/enemy units?

DN: Artillery can shoot over friendly troops if they are up hill of
them - again you need to consider the particular situation on the map.
Also the type of ammunition fired.

Firing into your own troops is a good way of demoralising them.

Remember the unit we are dealing with are close order and generally
standing up and a half battalion is about 400 men.

> Is there some sort of restriction to fire arc – eg 45 or 90 degrees –
> or can infantry/arty shoot in all directions? (I guess not)

DN: Generally close order troops shoot straight ahead.

The size of the units means that if the target is not in front of them
they will not be able to fire at it.

> Must units fire at closest enemy unit, or can enemy units be singled
> out? (guess not)

DN: Only artillery have the range to choose from multiple targets.

> Can a unit `wheel' and fire, if enemy not in `fire arc'?
DN: usually not, but the umpire could allow a special case, reduce the
available move and reduced fire.

[color=darkred]> Is there any kind of `rate of fire' – for inf and for arty?

DN: the fire effects in the tables assume about two minutes worth of
fire - probably 2 to 4 shots per weapon.

> Is firepower not affected by formation? I would expect the effect to
> be very different if a battalion fires when it is in line, and when
> in attack column. Cannot see it in the rules.

DN: the infantry fire table assume that the firing element is a half
battalion in line. A battalion in column of division is on a half
battalion front so if not moving would fire as one half battalion, if
the battalion was deployed in line it would fire as two half
battalions. Narrower from columns would not usually engage in firing,
being either screened by their own skirmishers or busy deploying onto
a wider frontage.


> 4. Assaults
> What happens if opposing units `bump' into each other (which of
> course can happen when movement is simutanous)? Do they fight?

DN: Unlikely to happen as the units will generally halt on
encountering an enemy if they do not have assault orders and they
would not usually be given assault ordeers if they didn't know about
the enemey they were to attack.

> What happens if opposing units assault each other at the same time,
> which I could also imagine to happen once in a while? In the rules
> it appears that there is always a defender and an attacker in
> assaults, which would not fit here.

DN: The attacker and defender are just labels, if both wish to assault
on is going to be defined as the attacker.

> Also, it seems in the rules that
> an attacker would declare an assalt and that a defender could then
> choose to `retire'. What does it actually mean that they `retire'?

DN: if the "defender" chooses to retire - it depends on the ground
etc. but they defender would not declare that they will retire without
indicating where they were going to retire to.

If the attackers are close (within 200 or 300 paces the defender will
probably have to fight anyway.

> How far do they fall back? And in a simultaneous movement, how can
> this actually be done in practice?

DN: Not sure what you are getting at here.
A voluntary fall back will be issued as an order and will specify in
the order how far.
Combat out comes are specified distances/times/rates.
For example after a cavalry fight the loser will gallop back behind
his second line (a bit rough if he doesn't have one :-)

> When an enemy unit is forced to retreat, will the winning unit
> always pursue? When, and when not?

DN: winning player could decide to pursue, otherwise infantry will
usually not pursue and canalry usually purse with part of the
victorious force and rally with the rest.

> 5. Orders
> Can a player order a scouting unit to `report back' "all the time",
> or will they only report back when requested, or when
> something `happens'? Is there a limit to how many messengers and
> scouts can be active?

DN: they player could order whatever he likes, but bear in mind that a
detachment of a dozen light cavalry scouting would run out of couriers
in short order.

Common sense should prevail as the umpire has to keep track of all
these couriers.

> Nothing is mentioned in the rules concerning `player' location on
> the battlefield, which I believe is very critical.

DN: the position of the player is the position of the officer he is
representing. If this position is not specified in the orders he
issues his subordinates will have trouble communicating to him.

This happened in a game I ran - play moved and all reports etc took
half an hour longer to reach him.

>I understand that
> anything within 900 paces can be given orders immediately. The rest
> I am not sure. Is the player/commander (?) located with a unit or an
> individual piece, and can the player giver orders and move around on
> the battlefield at the same time?

DN: the player can give orders about anything he can see or has had
reported to him. Usually the orders take as long to write as they take
the player to write and then they must travel to the intended
recipient by galloper (calculate the distance on the map).

If the officer represented by the player is moving then they could
issue oral instructions, usually they would have to halt to write an
order.

Try to imagine what you could do on horseback.

> How accurate will a scout report be?

DN: Umpires discretion - you could (in early games) make them all
fairly accurate. Once everyone was familiar with the basics add some
chrome and (say) roll for the reliability of the officer sending the
report.

Hope some of this helps



Cheers
David Nicolz
=======================================================================
>The main requirement to Umpire KS is that you know a little more than the players and that the players trust you to be fair.


If we change that to "as much as", then I'd agree with this
absolutely. Even "that you know enough"! Smile

> The Kriegsspiel can be a bit intimidating if you are not already a bit of a Napoleonic buff.


I'm not so sure I agree with this. You need some knowledge of the
period, certainly. However (speaking as one whose umpiring is slammed
hard over into the "Free Kriegsspiel" setting -- I very heavily favor
fast resolution over detailed resolution), being an expert is not
required.

When I run a Napoleonic Kriegsspiel, I ignore the distinctions between
various types of cavalry and artillery and infantry: it's just
cavalry, artillery, and infantry. Each has its role in the
rock-paper-scissors of Napoleonic combat (for example, infantry
formed in square will very likely defeat cavalry, but the square will
get pounded by artillery). I apply that and any special circumstances
to the odds tables from Reisswitz, and roll the dice.

I try to make sure the players understand beforehand that the umpire
table isn't running a detailed simulation, but one intended to create
Kriegsspiel's unique command environment, of the need to make
decisions under time pressure with only limited and out-of-date
information.


As a side note on delivering messages: I tend to calculate movement
times for uncontested routes, but to put out a 5x5mm piece for the
runner if there's any doubt about the route's security or the
destination player/unit's location, and then move that unit directly
to avoid errors in the message delivery time. (Creating the proper
delays on reports *is* important to me. Smile )

James Sterrett
=======================================================================
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henridecat

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Re: Beginner Questions

Post  henridecat on Tue Jan 27, 2009 3:37 pm

David,

Thanks for taking the time to the detailed answering to all my
questions. It is really very highly appreciated.
Also, of course thanks to James who has helped before. And as Martin
has noted, I also got a lot of help from the TFL group.

My knowledge into Napoleonics is mainly what I have obtained from
reading a very nice book I have on all Napoleons campaings, which is
extremely well illustrated on a strtegic level, but only a few times
on any tactical level. I dont recall the exact name of the book, but
its a big red one, with maps on every second page.

So, my knowledge of the details of battlefield tactics is
unfortunately limited. And I understand of course that KS is not
really supposed to recreate the details but merely give guidelines to
resolving it as an umpire. I am really starting to get used to this,
however, for some first games, it is nice to have an idea of what is
possible, and what is common practice.

For now I just have a few more questions (sorry, again) :-) :

1. When handling different sizes of forces meeting each other, how is
this handled? As examples I mean eg lets say a battalion in attack
column assaulting into a line of maybe 3 enemy battalions. Here the
force ratios are very different, but I expect that not all the three
battalions in line can be involved in the hand-to-hand combat. On the
other hand, how can you then EVER defend yourself against a massed
assault? I guess the other units in line could get a shot at the
assaulting force, however, then they would have to wheel a bit, which
doesnt seem to be general practice (moving and firing). They might
also have an effect at 'supporting' units?

2. It is also pretty clear that assaulting units cannot attack a
battery which has inf units next to it, but then, are these defending
inf units moved out in front of the batter, or the battery moves back,
or the whole thing is resolved in a more general fashion, not paying
attention to the detailed location of the different units? If so, we
are back at question 1, above.

3. In Cav assaults, would it be common that eg 2 Cav squads would
assault a unit, lets say, forcing it to retreat, and that you would
then have 2 other Cav units to take up the pursuit? Otherwise it seems
difficult for the first attacking Cav to keep up with the beaten
units, as these actually retreat faster than the Cav which have to
wait a move to pursue.

4. Retreats are also a bit unclear to me. What is written in the KS
book is that in eg a Repulsed unit has to retreat 2 moves and then
stand still for two moves to 'recover', right?

Thanks again for all the help.
I AM a wargamer and am used to find all answers in the rules. I dont
mind at all this different approach, but it takes a bit longer to grasp.

Cheers, Rasmus
=======================================================================
Okay, just one more....: :-/

1. Any suggestions to when a battalion (or half battalion) would be
repulsed, refeated, totally defeated, and lost due to casualties due
to Fire ONLY? In KS it is clear that artillery can repulse and defeat
units, but I find nothing relating to 'eliminating' units, eg making
them unfit for combat for the rest of the day. The infantry fire rules
mentions nothing in these lines.

Rasmus
=======================================================================
Oooh, I'd like to take a crack at this one as this came up in my first
game a couple days ago. I don't have the rules in front of me, but if
you take a look at the section pertaining to the apparatus for KS
you'll see it speaks of half battalion pieces as well as the 5/6 and
the other exchange piece. Somewhere in there, you'll find it mentioned
that if a half battalion loses half or more of its strength it is
removed from the field.

That at least is how I did it.

Hope I was right Smile.

Best, Jim (thegascon)
====================================================================

Ah, great, thanks Jim.
I must have missed that. I do find the book a bit confusing at times -
problems finding the parts.
Did you do anything like repulse or defeat battalions due to fire then?

Rasmus
====================================================================
>
> Ah, great, thanks Jim.
> I must have missed that. I do find the book a bit confusing at times -
> problems finding the parts.

Me too, but, in fairness, it wasn't really written as a strict
ruleset...or for a mass audience Smile. I'll agree with you, though, that
it was a little weird to find this rule in the equipment section.

> Did you do anything like repulse or defeat battalions due to fire
then?

No I didn't. Casualties from fire are pretty brutal as they are and it
wasn't too many turns before forces started melting away and their
commanders ordered them out of the fight...

Jim
====================================================================
If I may ask, how did you handle the other things I asked about?

I am especially curious about this thing about forces of different
sizes meeting (see my first question 3-4 mails back). In short, in eg
an assault, how much to you include in a defence, since I guess not an
entire line can be involved in hand-to-hand against a single battalion
or half battalion assaulting, or even a column-mass, which actually is
more tricky?

Sorry for pushing this.
I really think I am getting a hang of this...even if my questions seem
to suggest otherwise... :-)

Rasmus
====================================================================
I think the answer you've received is a good one, and offered by
someone who knows a good deal more about the system in practice than I
do, but I do have a thought on this matter. I am learning to take KS
as what it is which is to say there are certain tropes of wargaming it
simply doesn't have...and I'm not sure I miss them. One of them is
the morale ratings of different units. In KS, infantry is pretty much
infantry except, of course, with respect to their relative densities
(3-line, 2-line, skirmish). The result is that you're not likely to
toss the dice on a 1:2 attack...you can be relatively certain that
you're just going to get mauled and there's no morale check that will
let your OG stand and the militia run.

As I said, I'm becoming pretty convinced I don't miss those
differentiations. I usually play the French, but there are some
rulesets out there where the morale advantages afforded my boys in the
1805-1807 period get a little tedious.

So, when I was running my first couple games, the player wouldn't make
the attack and I decided the commander I was running as a kind of NPC
wouldn't be lunatic enough to do it either, even if his orders had
been aggressive enough to suggest he might.

Jim
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henridecat

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Re: Beginner Questions

Post  henridecat on Tue Jan 27, 2009 3:38 pm

====================================================================
G'day Rasmus
No trouble, its good to see this list this active.
Answers and comments interpolated as before....

--- In Kriegsspiel@yahoogroups.com, "rasmuslarsen42"
<rasmuslarsen42@...> wrote:
>
> David,
>
> Thanks for taking the time to the detailed answering to all my
> questions. It is really very highly appreciated.
> Also, of course thanks to James who has helped before. And as Martin
> has noted, I also got a lot of help from the TFL group.
DN: Yes, I followed the discussion on the TFL list as well :-D

>
> My knowledge into Napoleonics is mainly what I have obtained from
> reading a very nice book I have on all Napoleons campaings, which is
> extremely well illustrated on a strtegic level, but only a few times
> on any tactical level. I dont recall the exact name of the book, but
> its a big red one, with maps on every second page.
DN: Sounds like it could be Esposito & Elting? This could make a grest
basis for a Corps/Army size KS - there are even some rule on the
Kriegsspiel website.

>
> So, my knowledge of the details of battlefield tactics is
> unfortunately limited. And I understand of course that KS is not
> really supposed to recreate the details but merely give guidelines to
> resolving it as an umpire. I am really starting to get used to this,
> however, for some first games, it is nice to have an idea of what is
> possible, and what is common practice.
DN: Another site/yahoo group that could be useful is the group that
was working on George Jefferys' "Variable Length Bound" system. I will
admit to using a lot of ideas from this when I ran KS.
games.groups.yahoo.com/group/VLBRules/
One part of the VLB rules "Code Napoleon" is an appendix on Napoleonic
drill.

>
> For now I just have a few more questions (sorry, again) :-) :
>
> 1. When handling different sizes of forces meeting each other, how is
> this handled? As examples I mean eg lets say a battalion in attack
> column assaulting into a line of maybe 3 enemy battalions. Here the
> force ratios are very different, but I expect that not all the three
> battalions in line can be involved in the hand-to-hand combat. On the
> other hand, how can you then EVER defend yourself against a massed
> assault? I guess the other units in line could get a shot at the
> assaulting force, however, then they would have to wheel a bit, which
> doesnt seem to be general practice (moving and firing). They might
> also have an effect at 'supporting' units?
DN: Okay, a bunch of trick questions here :-)
This is one that causes a fair amount of grief with conventional
Napoleonic tabletop rules.

First point - look at the situation on the map.

Second point - very few assault ever get anywhere near hand-to hand
combat - assaults are about scaring the enemy off.

If one Battalion advances against several, it depends on what other
supporting units are about and so, how much freedom of manoeuvre the
line has. If the column attacks the junction of two units or the line
has the ability to wheel a unit to concentrate on the column, the
attack will generally fail (see the Garde Chasseurs' attack at
Waterloo) - odds of two to one against the column, maybe more if the
line is adventagously posted. In this case it is critical to prepare
the attack with artillery and skirmish fire to discomfort the defence
first.

One major point to keep in mind, if a Napoleonic commander ordeered
forward several battalions to the attack, he has two options - either,
each battalion moves seperately at deployment spacings or the whole
mass forms one of the special columns (see page 17).

Big columns make juicy artillery targets, they also justify using your
heavy cavalry (ask D'Erlon at Waterloo)

Support is really important - both the supported unit and the enemy
must know the supports are there for full effect - the friendly units
benefit from the morale support of friends - the enemy from both the
morale effect and the fact the supporting unit will generally cramp
their style. For example the supports may prevent a flanking move.

The more dispersed approach benefits from the wider front of the
attack and the fact the smaller columns make worse artillery targets.

In practice the thing that decides most small engagements is a
flanking threat.

Formal practice for a battalion would be to advance toward the enemy
in column (its quicker) then, at just outside effective fire range,
deploy into line, advance to your chosen range and begin the
firefight. While this is happening your skirmishers screen the column
and develop the enemy position (trying to find gaps, etc.) Once the
Line is ready to fire the skirmishers either rejoin the unit or move
to the flanks to lend support or keep then enemy's skirmishers off.
The result is then down to who can stand the heat longest (check the
battle of Albuera). In practice the decision is likely to come from
somewhere else if the fight is even :-]

>
> 2. It is also pretty clear that assaulting units cannot attack a
> battery which has inf units next to it, but then, are these defending
> inf units moved out in front of the batter, or the battery moves back,
> or the whole thing is resolved in a more general fashion, not paying
> attention to the detailed location of the different units? If so, we
> are back at question 1, above.
DN: Unsupported guns will usually pack it in if attacking infantry, if
they hang around the effects are shown on page 70 - bear in mind a
battery is about 150 to 200 men total, they can fight the infantry if
their artillery fire does not stop them.

What the supporting batttalion does is shift the morale balance. At a
pinch the gunners could run back to the supporting battalion and the
battalion could counter atack over the battery position or a
supporting battalion on the flank could wheel onto the flank of the
attacking infantry.

When it come to the actual adjudication, the umpie whould look at the
overall situation and decide which condition from the rules was most
applicable.

Note the comment about combined arms on page 71. If the troops just
happen to be in the same area they may not cooperate. If the players
orders place them under one commander the advantage accues to them.

>
> 3. In Cav assaults, would it be common that eg 2 Cav squads would
> assault a unit, lets say, forcing it to retreat, and that you would
> then have 2 other Cav units to take up the pursuit? Otherwise it seems
> difficult for the first attacking Cav to keep up with the beaten
> units, as these actually retreat faster than the Cav which have to
> wait a move to pursue.
DN: that would be the general style - again bear in mind that the
pursuing squadrons are not expectd to be galloping furiously after the
retreating enemy trying to sabre them, their aim is to remain in some
semblance of order and prevent the enemy from rallying.

>
> 4. Retreats are also a bit unclear to me. What is written in the KS
> book is that in eg a Repulsed unit has to retreat 2 moves and then
> stand still for two moves to 'recover', right?
DN: You got it. The repulsed troops have have a failure of morale and
don't want to play soldiers any more :-) Usually once they have got
clear of the enemy and their offices have got them sorted out and
given them a bit of a pep-talk they are ready for action again.

Note the best way to cover retreating troops is to have a second line,
usually with gaps for the troops of the first line to retreat through,
so any pursuers will have to deal with the formed steady second line
before they can get after the retreating unit(s) again, by which time
they should have rallied themselves.


Cheers
David Nicolz
====================================================================
Fantastic help, once more.

Reading practically everything on the Nappy internet site I mentioned
in another mail, all the functions of supporting units, second lines
and formations are suddenly much more clear. And I start to understand
why my questions are so difficult to answer without extensive replies
like yours and others.

Thanks a lot to all!
I hope to start an internet-game umpiring within 2 weeks - lets see
how it goes... :-/

Rasmus
====================================================================
Hi Rasmus

This is a rather rambling answer, because your question raises several issues.

Firstly, it appears such such combats were normally resolved by fire, rather than hand-to-hand combat. One or other force would usually retreat before melee occurred.

With that in mind, if one battalion in close column was advancing against a line of battalions, it would be difficult for more than one battalion to bring significant fire to bear on the attackers, provided the defending battalions remained in line.

That is a big 'if' though, as flanking battalions would be quite likely to swing forward to enfilade the advancing unit. Napoleonic-era armies are often represented as being heirarchical and somewhat inflexible in terms of command & control. But battalion commanders were quite likely to take the initiative in this situation, if their own flank would not be threatened by doing so.

This raises the question of why you would attack several enemy battalions with just one? I would suggest this is not good tactics.

One final practical point. These days we do not really distinguish between fire and melee infantry combat in our games, as we emphasise speedy combat resolution to keep things moving.

Hope that helps

Martin James
====================================================================
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