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2007 NICT List Commentary
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Todd Kaeser
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 19, 2007 4:40 pm    Post subject:

I've looked at Derek's list and the list in general... where is the English Ally that is required when you use the English???

Todd K

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 19, 2007 5:47 pm    Post subject: Not required

The English Ally, in fact any of the English minimums on the Early Burgundian list, are only required if you use MORE than 4 elements of English Longbowmen.

So...you could even get a knight unit and not take the Ally...which I would think should be one of the knights units that you use on this list (2E Reg B SHK L,Sh/HK L.)

Frank
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 20, 2007 7:31 pm    Post subject:

Quote:
Dennis Shortouse, Swiss

1x:
C/C IRR-B SHK,L,Sh 1 137 141
+IRR-B SHK,L,Sh 1 48 54

2x:
A/G REG-A LHI,P 2 96 192
+REG-C LHI,PK 4 20 80
+REG-C LMI,PK 12 12 144
+REG-C LMI,2HCT 6 16 96

1x:
Lorraine Knights IRR-B SHK,L,Sh 1 54 54
+IRR-B SHK,L,Sh 1 54 54

1x:
Lorraine Cavalry IRR-C HC,L,Sh 1 24 24 1
+IRR-C HC,L,Sh 1 24 24 1

4x:
Swiss Infantry REG-A LHI,PK 4 28 112
+REG-B LHI,PK 4 24 96
+REG-B LMI,PK 8 16 128
+REG-B LHI,2HCT 4 28 112
+REG-B LMI,2HCT 4 20 80

2x:
Swiss Crossbow, REG-B LI,CB 4 8 32

1x:
Swiss Handgunners, REG-B LI,HG 4 8 32

1x:
L/A Crossbow REG-C LI,CB 4 6 24

1599


Let me start by saying that the worst list on which to play Swiss is the Swiss list itself. This is a fairly common pattern in Warrior that is specific to the open tournament format. Open tournament formats reward some balance over monolithic armies, and thus strong troop types are almost invariably better acquired as the ally contingent on somebody else's list than on their native list. Note, for example, Frank's comments about playing Romans on the Later Judean or Numidian list. Similarly, we see a lot of Almughuvars in competition, but almost never a Catalan Company army.

So if you want Swiss, play Germans, Burgundians, or Italians, and take the Swiss as allies.

Dennis does a fairly good job trying to make something of the Swiss list itself. He does manage to cobble together 13 units, which is still not enough, but at least vaguely tenable. There's a bunch of LI to split fire and soak off shooting from the shieldless pike units. And there are a smattering of lancers here to provide support and follow up for the Swiss.

However, this is a lot of points spent on Ally generals. That's really painful, and I'm not sure the benefits are worth it.

And I still think this army is doomed out of the gate against a wide range of opponents, such as anyone with 120+ shooters, or anyone who covers broad frontage and has regular light troops (Mongols, Sassanids).

I give the Swiss list a potential of 5, and Dennis a 4 for his effort.


-Mark Stone
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Ewan McNay
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 20, 2007 7:41 pm    Post subject:

I wound Dennis up enough with my comment on his Swiss list last year Twisted Evil and will hence maintain a tactful silence regarding this list this time around...
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 20, 2007 7:52 pm    Post subject:

Quote:
Jon Becker, Nikephoran Byzantine
1 1E CINC/ 1E LANCER HC L B SH REG A/B 197
2 1E SUBG/1E LANCER HC L B SH REG A/B 127
3 2E LANCERS HC L B SH REG B 88
4 2E LANCERS HC L B SH REG B 88
5 2E KATAPHRACTOI SHC L SH REG A/B 150
6 4E ARCHERS LC B REG C 58
7 4E ARCHERS LC B REG C 58
8 4E ARCHERS LC B REG C 58
9 4E PSILOI LI JLS SH REG 1E C/3E D 36
10 4E PSILOI LI JLS SH REG 1E C/3E D 36
11 4E PSILOI LI 4E B REG D 26
12 4E PSILOI LI S SH REG D 34
13 6E KONTARATOI 4E 2E HI/2E MI LTS D JLS SH REG (2E C/1E D); 2E MI B SH REG D 142
14 6E KONTARATOI 4E 2E HI/2E MI LTS D JLS SH REG (2E C/1E D); 2E MI B SH REG D 142
15 2E VARANGIANS LHI 1E 2HCW/JLS SH 1E JLS SH IRR B 67
16 2E VARANGIANS LHI 1E 2HCW/JLS SH 1E JLS SH IRR B 67
17 2E VARANGIANS LHI 1E 2HCW/JLS SH 1E JLS SH IRR B 67
18 4E AKONTISTAI LMI 2E B SH 2E B REG D 50
19 4E AKONTISTAI LMI 2E B SH 2E B REG D 50
20 4E AKONTISTAI LMI S SH REG D 58

1599


Nikephoran Byzantine is one of my favorite lists, both from a historical perspective and from a competitive perspective. No, you don't get rank and a half LC, but otherwise this is the best and most optimized mix of light troops available in the game. A mix of regular and irreg LC, with a mix of weapons, regular LI with any weapons you would want, no morale class you don't need, no shields you don't need... great stuff.

The EHC aren't spectacular, but they are servicable, and do an excellent job of keeping your opponent honest in trying to deal with your skirmisher screen.

You get some LMI bowmen to mix in some denser fire.

Put all of that together, and you have arguably the finest army in the game for executing the "Skirmisher Doctrine" style of play.

Then there are the shock troops. The Varangians are among the best barbarian foot in the game. There are only a handful of lists where you can get LHI and 2HCW and JLS and Sh morale of Irr B or better. And they work perfectly with the SHC. There is no regular infantry in the game that can avoid recoiling disordered in the face of a combined charge by SHC and impetuous Varangians.

This is mostly a good effort at buying the list. The lancers are in the right number and configuration, and the LC configuration is reasonable though I would probably go with 2 6-stand units rather than 3 4s. The quantity of LI is about right. The Varangians are just right. The choice to use LMI slingers is interesting, but it's also an almost unique thing about the list: very, very few armies even have the option for this troop type.

There are some things I would do differently. You can get shields for the LI with bow, and absolutely should buy them shielded! This vastly improves their resistance to charges by LC and makes them a threat against shieldless LI. You can get more LMI shooters, and should definitely take all you can get. Finally, there's some irregular Asiatic LC available which gives you some LC that can charge impetuously. I'm wary of relying too much on irregular LC, but give the abundance of high quality lights on the list, the irregular LC fit in nicely and round out the full compliment of skirmisher tactics available to you.

So where are you going to get all the points to buy these things? No one will be shocked to hear me say: dump the close order foot. It's slow, doesn't project enough shooting, and doesn't hold up well enough against the top tier of foot shock troops. Against Romans, Phalangites, Swiss, Almughuvars, or Spanish these guys are a waver test waiting to happen. And they are soooo expensive. Never, ever, ever buy these guys when playing Nikephorans.

A list with tremendous potential; I'd rank it a 9 in that regard. I rate this take on it a 6.


-Mark Stone
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Frank Gilson
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2007 12:19 am    Post subject: Nikephoran

I agree with Mark's assessment.

It isn't that the Kontaratoi are 'awful'...they're just expensive. More importantly, though, they do not fit in with the Nikephoran army's tactics. There's no need for a centerpiece of close order foot...nothing to combine arms with close order foot effectively, etc.

So, never, ever, buy the Kontaratoi...ever ever...Wink

Frank
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2007 10:06 pm    Post subject: Re: Charles Yaw Tartessian (Ancient Spanish)

Frank Gilson wrote:
Charles has used this list before.

Carthaginian CinC 1E Reg B HC JLS,Sh
Sub 2E Reg B HC JLS,Sh
2 units of 4E Irr C LC JLS,Sh (Numidians)
6E Irr C LC JLS,Sh (Spanish)
with 6E Irr B LI JLS,Sh detachment
2E Reg C LI JLS,Sh
4E Reg C LI JLS,Sh
7E Irr C LI B
2 units of 2E Irr B LMI HTW,JLS,Sh
4 units of 4E Irr C(1 A) LMI HTW,JLS,Sh
2 units of 8E Reg C MI LTS,Sh (African Spearmen)
2 units of 2Elephants Irr C JLS/JLS
1 Incendiary Ox Cart
18 units, 2 bodies, 2 commands, 54.5 scouting

Ancient Spanish seems attractive, with very hard hitting barbarian foot and a bunch of goodies. However, it's very very hard to organize and use properly.

I agree with using the Tartessian option to get access to regulars, but Charles doesn't use many regulars. I would especially use Reg B LC JLS,Sh that's brush-proof. He puts his barbarian foot units mainly in 4E units, begging for them to be shot up, ruined by Lancers, etc. The Ox cart is also hard to use here without lancer mounted to work with it. Combining it with an Elephant unit might work, but is tricky.

Frank


Frank pegs this one pretty well. If you're going to play Spanish, play with the Carthaginian CinC. Make more use of regulars, especially the LC. Irregular JLS,Sh LC is something I generally take only if it's a list minimum and I have no choice. Regular LC I'll happily take in almost any flavor.

The small units of Irr LMI are a problem. Easily shot up, and they rack up CPF quickly in hand to hand. When playing Almughuvars -- a similar troop type -- I tend to take them in either 6 stand units that operate 2 or 3 wide, or 3 stand units that operate in column. You want to bigger units for durability, and the smaller units for exploiting gaps and overlaps.

There's also a bit of a math gimmick in using HTW+JLS. Two units in a single element column hitting a 32 figure pike block impetuously will do 96 casualties, which is 3CPF and good chances for a rout at contact. The same number of figures in a single unit that is two elements wide will do 90 casualties, which is not 3CPF. Huge difference.

The ox cart is tempting, but hard to use. On this list I would say it's too expensive and redundant. This kind of expendable is useful in armies that otherwise lack a way of disordering big foot units (like pike blocks). So on Ming or Timurids these guys have a real purpose. On Spanish, however, you have other ways of accomplishing this without throwing away points to your opponent.

I myself have spent a lot of time going back and forth over which list is better: Spanish or Later Carthaginian. I'm of the opinion that Later Carthaginian is better, and I'm working on putting it together in 15mm. But the difference isn't great, and comes down largely to a matter of personal playing style.

I give this list a max potential of 9, but I'm afraid I can only give Charles a 6 for his rendition.


-Mark Stone
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2007 11:05 pm    Post subject:

Ewan McNay wrote:

Quote:
There are some other options that are more a matter of taste. I try to have points available for a stone wall to put the LMI CB guys behind. That really anchors one flank very cheaply. And I actually take some LMI handgunners. They can do real damage to close order foot who aren't properly screened, they drive off enemy lights, and ratchet up the shooting power of the army a bit.
Mark, do you have a list that you like to hand? Would be interesting, perhaps, to see what you give up.


Sure. Here's the 1600 point version of Knights of Saint John that I run. I have this in both 25mm and 15mm, and have seriously contemplated running it in the NICT. As you can see, I don't get everything on my wish list either:


Knights of Saint John
1 stand: CinC w/Reg A SHK L,Sh 172 0 172
1 stand: Serving Brethren Reg B SHK L 54 0 54

1 stand: Subgen w/Reg A SHK L,Sh 102 0 102
1 stand: Serving Brethren Reg B SHK L 54 0 54

1 stand: Knights of Justice Reg A SHK L,Sh 63 10 73
1 stand: Knights of Justice Reg A SHK L 57 0 57

1 st: Serving Brethren Reg B SHK L,Sh 60 10 70
1 st: Serving Brethren Reg B SHK L 54 0 54

6 st: Bowmen Reg C LMI B,Sh/B 14 10 94

6 st: Archers Reg C LI B,Sh/B 7 10 52

8 st: Militia Reg D LMI CB,Sh/CB 10 10 90

6 st: Skirmishers Reg D LI CB,Sh/CB 5 10 40

2 st: Skirmishers Reg D LI CB 4 10 18

2 st: Handgunners Reg C LI HG 6 10 22

2 st: Handgunners Reg C LMI HG,Sh 16 10 42

2 st: Handgunners Reg C LMI HG,Sh 16 10 42

2 st: Turkopoles Reg C LC JLS,B,Sh 20 10 50

4 st: Turkopoles Reg C LC JLS,B,Sh 20 10 90

4 st: Marinarii Reg B LHI CB,2HCT 32 10 138

2 st: Marinarii Reg B LHI CB,2HCT 32 10 74

1 st: Marinarii Reg C LHI CB,2HCT,Sh 32 10 42
1 st: Marinarii Reg C HI CB,2HCT 28 0 28

4 st: Marinarii Reg C HI CB,2HCT 28 10 122

Stone wall 1 20 0 20

TOTAL 1,600
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2007 11:35 pm    Post subject:

Quote:
Jon Cleaves, Ming Chinese
1 2E Reg A/B EHC L, B, CPA 201
2 2E Irr C El 6 crew, SGP 149
3 3E Irr C El 6 crew 214
4 2E Irr D MC/LC JLS 40
5 12E Irr D/1C LI JLS, Sh 73
6 6E Irr D LI B 37
7 2E RA/C EHC/HC L 1/2Sh FL S 127
8 4E Reg D MI LTS Sh, FL 74
9 4E Reg D MI LTS Sh, FL 74
10 4E Reg D LMI B 1/2Sh, FA 66
11 4E Reg C LC B 58
12 4E Reg C LC B 58
13 4E Reg D LMI B 1/2Sh, FA 66
14 2E Reg B LHI 1HCW 1/2Sh 62
15 4E Reg D LMI CB 1/2Sh, FA 66
16 2E RA/C EHC/HC L 1/2Sh FL S 127
17 4E Reg D LI B 26
2xBomb Oxen 80
1598


Ming is a very tough list to construct, especially on 1600 points. The temptations are obvious, and many:
    * You can get some Mongols
    * You can get a lot of shooting
    * You can get the best artillery in the game
    * You can get firelance for both foot and cav
    * You can get a Burmese contingent

Like Timurids and many of the Roman lists, however, the things you really want to buy are expensive, and some choices are mutually exclusive, so you have to pick carefully.

Jon opts not to take either the Mongols or the artillery, and instead focuses on making the native Ming troops as high quality as he can given that he's going to take the Burmese. I don't fault that approach; personally, I would go for the artillery instead of more and better quality native Ming, but I don't think one choice is better than the other.

Further, I think that Jon has latched onto one of the seriously under appreciated troop types in Warrior: EHC with firelance. These guys hit with an impact comparable to EHK, and have a lot more versatility in other ways. And they work well with the bomb oxen: the oxen and EHC simultaneously charge a foot unit, which the oxen disorder as a disordering interpenetration, and the EHC will almost certainly then recoil disordered for an immediate waver test and a strong follow up.

The problem generally with the Ming is that it's a very compact army, and many of its threats are tough to coordinate and deliver successfully. Your opponent is going to see the EHC/oxen combination coming a mile away, so it's tough to drive that home decisively. It becomes almost more of a channeling threat, one that forces your opponent to go elsewhere, hopefully into the Burmese. But the Burmese and the EHC can't be too close together, since the EHC aren't elephant proof... you begin to see some of the complications.

Given its compactness, this army definitely needs more cheap lights to hold frontage. I wouldn't bother giving firelance to the MI. They are D class, and can't be upgraded, and they aren't HI, so firelance doesn't get you that much. And I really question the Swordsman unit; I don't think that's required. Yes, it gives you a strong rough terrain unit for anchoring a flank, but an expensive one.

Overall, not a bad effort, but this is really a difficult and complicated list, especially on 1600 points. I give the list a max potential of 6, and I rate Jon a 5 for his take on it.


-Mark Stone
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 25, 2007 5:38 pm    Post subject:

I agree with Mark's comments wholeheartedly. I am still interested in making this work - and without artillery, though the temptation is great.
He's dead on that there are several things to like and you can't get them all. You really need to pick which "type" of Ming you want to be.

I am sticking with it for now, having made adjustments based on my experience with this at the NICT, which is almost all the experience with it I have so far. My Warrior playing time is extremely limited nowadays.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 27, 2007 6:42 pm    Post subject:

I thought I'd throw in my 2 cents on the KoSJ list that has been evaluated.

Here is my theory on building a list. The anology is like NASCAR. You pick your engine/vehicle and then stick to what the makes the list run - these would be the core troops. The rest of the list is the fine tuning. Everyone drives a car a little differently - you want to make it run according to your specific strengths and weaknesses. A few years ago I tried to run Berber. While the basic core of the list was fine I went beyond my element w/ the fine tuning and therefore I did not do well.

I believe that the core of the KoSJ list - and I'm sure Mark will agree - is the regular SHK and the excellent regular loose shooters. Mark and my list both are configured of those troops. I know what makes an army run for my specifics and if I ran the list that Mark has suggested I would not fair as well. Running handgunners is turly an art form. One has to be careful that they are not missile targets themselves being such small units and you have to be sure that you are not contacted by ANYONE b/c you'll die very quickly. This would cause an army with very fragile morale (w/ exception of the knights ) to take mostly uneasy waiver tests. I know that I cannot run the HG troops well.

Take a look at Derek's lists over the years. They are not often rated that highly, yet he seems to win the NICT often. He has obviously figured out how to pick a core and then fine tune it to what he is really good at. Yet I'm sure if many of us ran the type of lists Derek typically runs we would get clocked in the field and then scratch our heads. Find what works for you and then perfect it as best as you can.

It is also funny b/c while Mark suggests taking even another unit of LC Turkopoles - I have also been given the opposite suggestion.

I really like the 24 man Reg D LMI Cb 1/2 sh units. They are cheap units - 70 pts. Bulky - so that a single lancer unit will have to think twice about matching up alone w/ it - but if my opponent commits too much to take it out it will probably be a waste of points for them and I can get a matchup to my advantage elsewhere. They opperate very well on the flanks typically dishing out a fair amount of shooting to any LC there. I personally don't like the 32 man option. I've run it before. It is too bulky for me. It can't do all the neat things that 24 man units can do - contact/expand 2 elements in/out of column. Turn and face full when in column (a 32 man unit cannot do this in column). It is incredibly flexible and useful. Ask any of the opponents Ewan and I faced in the team NICT - we even took another unit of them they worked so well. Personally I would rather have the 2 units of 24 CB than the 32 man and 2 units of 8 HG.

I also like having the extra general on the table. Impetuous SHK that can turn 90 degrees and move full distance (reg) are awesome. If I didn't have 3 I wouldn't be able to hit as hard as I do. It is already difficult at times to match up my 1 unit of non-general knights to hit impetuous at times.

I am also a big fan of the 2nd unit of 24 LMI B. 1/2 sh. Regular shooting armies are what I enjoy/ think I'm good at using. The big units of LI tend to get in the way and not shoot enough of my opponents away.

It is always funny/interesting w/ the ratings. One - please keep them coming - I love reading them and thinking about the lists used in the NICT. Howver, last year my list was rated a 9 out of 10 and I had a below average NICT finishing near the bottom. I corrected what did not work for me - I dropped the 8 man LMI Jls,Sh unit and essentially picked up another unit of turkopoles. I received a lower rating this year, yet I took 6th overall - up 11 steps. In my opinion I clearly made the better corrections and my list functioned better for me.

For me the best advice comes from the critiques of the main engine of the list. I blew some of that w/ the Berbers (like I said mostly fine tuning) and if I ran them again would have a much better list. However if the engine/core of the list is pretty solid each individual needs to fine tune it to fit their optimal gaming style.

Just my 2 cents on all of the opinions out there.

Todd K

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 27, 2007 7:34 pm    Post subject:

Todd makes some good points about list construction. First, I make no claim that any rating this year has anything to do with any past ratings; these are strictly impulse judgments. Second, Todd's list this year is pretty clearly better constructed than his list last year.

The main thing though, and I've said as much elsewhere, is that Todd really emphasizes how much the quality of a list has to do with individual playing style. I find a variety of uses for the handgunners on the KoStJ list, but then I have some specific problems I'm trying to solve with them (how to hold a woods or steep hill with minimal points, how to clear enemy LI out of woods or steep hill with minimal points, how to turn shooting damage into artillery damage, and how to bust up a 32 figure pike block with shooting, shooting up SHC, etc). I'm aware of the risks, and feel I can handle them.

It is sorely tempting to take all the B-armed guys as LMI. I want the LI unit, though, to cover more frontage and -- not surprisingly -- provide a screen in front of the LMI handgunners so that they don't end up in the wrong matchup.

So inidividual playing style has everything to do with how good a list is. And Todd is right; Derek is the perfect proof of this point. I'd make a mess of most of the lists he plays, but he obviously knows what works for him.


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 27, 2007 9:32 pm    Post subject: Generally agree - KOSJ

and heck, why don't I put my KOSJ on 1600 here and justify it so we see another contrast of what Todd and Mark are talking about.

CinC w/PA 2E Reg A/B SHK L,Sh/L 226
Sub similar 156
2 units of 2E Reg C LC JLS,B,Sh 100
4E Reg B LHI 2HCT,CB 138
2 units of 4E Reg C LHI 2HCT,CB 244
2E Reg A SHK L,Sh/L 130
2E Irr C SHK/HC L,Sh 100
4 units of 2E Reg D LI CB 72
3 units of 4E Reg C LMI B,Sh/B 198
2 units of 2E Reg C LMI HG,Sh/HG 76
2E Reg C LI HG 22
2 units of 6E Reg D LMI CB,Sh/CB 140 = 1602
21 units, 2 commands, 18 scouting

What's with the weird Reg C LI HG unit? Well, it gets traded in for a Stone Wall almost every game.

I choose not to try to use 2E 2HCT,CB units. I don't like them much...to vulnerable to enemy shooting, and you get tempted to treat them as fully capable units to be used solo, which they're not.

Instead of Todd's choice to use 3 generals, and Mark's choice to use all regular knights with high morale, I slip in an Irr C SHK/HC unit as an affordable compromise that retains ability to go impetuous independently. I'll just have to be very careful with it.

I do try to use the LMI HG here, but don't fully shield them as the role they'll be fulfilling should not require that.

You can see I completely disdain the lights, buying them minimally mostly for use as pickets to slow enemy marches rather than anything else.

Frank


Last edited by Frank Gilson on Fri Sep 28, 2007 4:50 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 27, 2007 10:35 pm    Post subject:

Frank,

I'm assuming that your LC is regular by the point totals???

I too have tried the 2E LHI 2HCT boys, but found them better in 4E units. I also like the 1/2 shielded part as I find it VERY useful at times to be out of skirmish and shielded.

I've thought about the Ir SHK/HC units and Ewan and I used them in teams, but I love pure SHK units myslef.

Maybe in the future I will try a HG unit or two to see what all the fuse is Wink

Todd K

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2007 4:50 pm    Post subject: Yes...

LC is regular...bleh...thanks Wink...editing post now.

I would see where 2E 2HCT,CB would benefit from some shields...it just makes the bigger units even more expensive than the quite expensive they already are.

It all goes to playability in the personal sense. I would tend to hang my 2E units out in untenable situations that a 4E unit could succeed in, so I don't run 2E such units.

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