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Reg Loose Foot

 
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Frank Gilson
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 11, 2019 11:26 am    Post subject: Reg Loose Foot

Regular loose order foot are some of our very best troops.

Being 4 to a stand, not taking double fatigue from combat, and the low 10 point unit command factor are pluses.

Not being able to charge impetuously a minus (oh, and the having to take a waver for mounted charge in the open, generally).

Still...such foot make up a significant part of top armies.

Komnenan : Varangians
MesoAmerican : various
Kanem Bornu : Reg B LMI LTS,D,Sh

I'd like to learn more about various of your experiences using and fighting against such troops.
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Mark Stone
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 12, 2019 3:11 am    Post subject:

I pretty much never have an army without regular loose order foot. So many examples of their virtues. I'll start with one simple example.

When I run 10 Independent States people often assume that their light cavalry will be safe out on the wings, and thus can effectively slow my advance since I have no light cav of my own and almost no light infantry. However, I do have two units of 24 figures of regular LMI bow, half shielded. These generally go on the wings, opposing enemy LC. So let's look at the interaction here.

Because foot moves first in approaches, the LC will have to come up to 160p in order to get into skirmish. It's pretty easy to put 2 CPF on them, even when in skirmish. Now they recall, presumably to safety. Except...

A 200p recall move puts them at 200 + 160 = 360p from my LMI. Next bound my LMI advance 120, and 360 - 120 = 240p -- shooting range. Now the LC have to counter to get into skirmish, which they often don't, making it that much easier for me to get to 3 CPF. And a big up roll on either of the first two shots will certainly put them at 3 CPF at some point.

So at a minimum the LC are frequently out of the action for all practical purposes, recalling again now tired and disordered. If my opponent isn't careful, I may get a third shot off inducing a waver against LC who haven't finished rallying because disordered.

Also, the 24 figure configuration is highly useful. Start in a 1x6 column. By advancing 120 that culminates in a 45 degree wheel, and then expanding by two at the end of that 120p advance, you can often end up projecting your shooting arc much further forward than your opponent expects. Later, being able to turn 90 degrees, move 40p (perhaps combined with some kind of wheel) and then expand by 2 can be a useful reploying maneuver to quickly bring new targets to bear.

10 Independent States would be a vastly inferior army -- indeed an unplayable army -- without these guys to work their magic.
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Frank Gilson
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 12, 2019 7:12 am    Post subject: Armies I've Used

I've certainly played Varangians on Nikephoran Byzantine who are definitely all stars...primarily for their effect on enemy infantry in combat, but also against elephants.

I ran a non-circulating Post-Something-Or-Other Inca army to victory in an Open event. Reg B LMI 2HCT,S,Sh/JLS,S,Sh are extremely solid. Reg C LMI HTW,JLS,S,Sh also...with pike and light infantry on that list to cover 'holes' in frontage.

Last Historicon (2018) the Dailami Reg B LHI LTS,B,Sh units were key on Ghaznavid...I ran too much LC, but those guys repeatedly over achieved.
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Todd Kaeser
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 12, 2019 12:29 pm    Post subject:

Obviously they are my favorite configuration of troops being a Meso player regularly. I have them in my Nubian Christian list, Kanem, 100 YW, Peltasts, KoSJ, Sicilian H, etc....

They are pretty quick moving at 120 p and being regular are very flexible in movement.

Love them.

Todd

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Frank Gilson
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 12, 2019 12:31 pm    Post subject:

Todd Kaeser wrote:
Obviously they are my favorite configuration of troops being a Meso player regularly. I have them in my Nubian Christian list, Kanem, 100 YW, Peltasts, KoSJ, Sicilian H, etc....

They are pretty quick moving at 120 p and being regular are very flexible in movement.

Love them.

Todd

Maneuverability is a key feature, of course.

The ability to contract, then enter skirmish, putting the contracted elements out on the entire other side of the Reg loose foot unit is a pretty big deal...as leaving skirmish is free, you could even do so at the end of this sequence.
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Mark Stone
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 12, 2019 8:57 pm    Post subject:

Use case #2 for me: combined arms with elephants. The best example in the lists I regularly play is Ming Chinese. You take the Burmese contingent, and then buy the Ming Reg B LHI 2HCT (half shielded) in two 16 figure units.

The combo of elephants and 2HCT charging any pike more than one element wide is enough to assure victory. The elephants may win outright, but will generally lose by a small amount. The elephants really serve two purposes. First, the make the pike take the charge at the halt. This is enough to enable the 2HCT to beat the pike by more than the elephants lose to the pike. Second, the elephants are a mounted opponent, so that the pike must recoil disordered as a combat result (they lose overall).

The elephants will recoil, not disordered, and the 2HCT can choose not to follow up. Then both can charge the pikemen again next bound, now charging into disordered pike. They should induce a waver at least, if not an outright rout.

Similar results apply against other forms of close order foot. Even against LTS,B foot the elephants can go in with the 2HCT guys, provided the elephants are in column.

And the 2HCT guys stand up pretty well against a barbarian charge. Starting out with 6@5 and inflicting a -1 penalty on most barbarian foot, it's tough for barbarians to double them in casualties, and if the barbarians don't rout the 2HCT at contact the barbarians tire out very quickly.

Overall a highly useful troop type. The Hypaspists on the Alexandrian Imperial list function in a similar manner, as do the peltasts on the Seleucid list if upgraded to LHI.
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