Charge or support?

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dakkadakka
Posts: 12
Joined: Mon Jul 29, 2019 4:44 pm

Charge or support?

Post by dakkadakka » Mon Jul 29, 2019 5:01 pm

Hey guys! I have been lurking around these forums for several months; and, figured that it’s finally time to join up. I am a big TFL fan (mainly CoC and WaT). But, after watching the GdA match between Rich & David, I have gotten a little keen on this one as well.

I’ll be getting my rules in the next day or two; but, until then I have been looking through the forums, trying to get a feel for the game. Forgive me for this silly noob question; but, when I watched the video, the charges always went in with one battalion at the front and another in support. I never saw anyone do an Infantry Assault Order, then take all battalions and engage the enemy one-on-one.

I know supporting battalions give a one die reroll on the charge dice; but, if the support battalion engaged the adjacent enemy battalion instead of supporting the charge, wouldn’t it get a chance to do more damage to the enemy line? Wouldn’t it also break the defensive support the enemy battalion gives to the defender of the original charge? Rolling those 5 CDs and breaking support just seems better than a 1d6 reroll.

I’m an old grognard who cut his teeth on the SPI games in the 70’s. In that genre this tactic would be called a soak-off attack - isolating the enemy with minor attacks on its flanks, thus giving the main attack more punch. I don’t know all the in and outs of the rules; but, I just wanted to check with the guys who have been playing GdA for awhile to see if this is an effective tactic.

Archdukek
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Location: Linlithgow, West Lothian, UK

Re: Charge or support?

Post by Archdukek » Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:08 pm

Welcome to GDA.

What you saw in the videos was the use of a lead battalion with supports in the charge process. If the attackers move into contact then the supporting unit(s) can also complete its movement and if contact is made will add its own 5 Combat Dice into the Combat pool.
If a supporting unit is opposed by an enemy supporting unit then neither count as support and you would probably be better declaring multiple charges, though that isn't always the case.

Does that help?

John

dakkadakka
Posts: 12
Joined: Mon Jul 29, 2019 4:44 pm

Re: Charge or support?

Post by dakkadakka » Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:54 pm

Hey John - thanks for the reply. It seems like either tactic is not necessarily applicable in all situations. If you are trying to punch through at a critical point, pile on the support. If you are trying to wear down or break a brigade along a wider front, then the one-on-one multiple charge seems the way to go. Also the number of available ADC’s is also a factor as to whether you can declare an infantry assault with multiple units.

In the video, when David was attacking Rich’s left flank with his reserve brigade, it just seemed like his supporting battalion was in a vulnerable spot, right in front of the defending support battalion to Rich’s right of the target battalion. I was wondering why he didn’t just engage with both battalions. I’ll need to look at that section again - it might be because David had not declared an infantry assault.

wireme61
Posts: 22
Joined: Mon Oct 22, 2018 7:12 pm

Re: Charge or support?

Post by wireme61 » Tue Jul 30, 2019 1:35 pm

Welcome GDA is a great game.

I wonder if you lumping together the charge process at the beginning of the turn and the melee process at the end of the turn. The charge process uses 2d6 roll with the supports able to provide a d6 re-roll. If the units after the charge process continue into melee, then supporting battalion would get there own 5 dice in the melee phase if they had enough movement left from there charge to make contact with the battalion next to the target.

Not sure if that clarifies it at all?

Mark

dakkadakka
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Joined: Mon Jul 29, 2019 4:44 pm

Re: Charge or support?

Post by dakkadakka » Tue Jul 30, 2019 2:39 pm

Hi, Mark!

I wasn’t aware that the supporting battalion can melee as well - that definitely makes a difference, especially with two attack columns hitting a long line.

I did know that melee takes place later in the turn. I was just trying to figure out if it is better to use the second battalion for support, or to charge a second enemy unit. The former would strengthen the charge, but the support battalion would be at risk from fire, with no chance (that I can see) of returning fire. The latter leaves the first charge weaker, but allows a charge against a second unit, which could cause a large gap in the defender’s line if successful.

Thankfully the rules should be in today!

Jim

wireme61
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Joined: Mon Oct 22, 2018 7:12 pm

Re: Charge or support?

Post by wireme61 » Tue Jul 30, 2019 5:07 pm

That is a good question. My thought would be to centralize the charge on the weakest battalion using the support unit rerolls against this weakened battalion to obtain the best possible charge result. Knowing that if the Target unit retreats or retires in the charge phase so does its supports. If they stand then you still have an opportunity to melee supports if they could have been contacted by your supports within the original charge distance.

Mark

Archdukek
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Joined: Tue Sep 03, 2013 11:49 pm
Location: Linlithgow, West Lothian, UK

Re: Charge or support?

Post by Archdukek » Tue Jul 30, 2019 6:21 pm

Hi Jim,
It can be a very fine tactical decision whether to commit a unit to support a charge or commit it to charging itself. As Mark has said sometimes that support reroll can make make a critical difference to the Charge Procedure outcome which forces back a section of the whole enemy line without bayonets being crossed in Melee. At other times separate charge attacks may improve the odds of success. As the attacker you get to choose assuming that the Brigade is on Infantry Assault orders. If it's not then only 1 battalion can charge and that will be unsupported.

Some other things to keep in mind, if assault columns are Massed then they cannot declare separate charges against a single enemy unit (paragraph 5 on page 41) which might have been relevant to the situation in the video, I don't know since I've yet to watch it.

Using a support battalion means that the casualties from the enemy defensive fire, including that from the defenders supports, is split across the attacking units and not concentrated on the lead attacker which can be useful (5a page 44).

Having said that the attacker can reduce the defenders defensive fire from supports by having a non-supporting flanking unit nearer to the defending support unit (para 6, page 45). In that case the defender cannot fire that support unit in the Charge Phase but must wait until the Fire Phase when it might be firing second as the non-initiative player.

While placing a Brigade on Infantry Assault Orders costs 2 ADCs those Orders continue to apply in subsequent Turns until concluded. So you don't need to keep spending ADCs for the Brigade each Turn. It can make a lot of sense to place your attacking Brigades on Infantry Assault orders early in the game when you may have more ADCs available than hang back until they come within charge range of their target.

There are a lot of subtle interactions and decision points in these rules which aren't always apparent until you get the toys on the table and play through a game or test scenario.

John

dakkadakka
Posts: 12
Joined: Mon Jul 29, 2019 4:44 pm

Re: Charge or support?

Post by dakkadakka » Wed Jul 31, 2019 12:11 am

Thanks for the responses guys - really looking forward to diving into this one!

Jim

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