Disordered units who are charged

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Disordered units who are charged

Postby nikjen66 » Sun Oct 15, 2017 5:22 pm

Can a disordered unit still react to being charged. Such as infantry charged by cavalry from further than 15cm? Can they attempt to form square? The rules don't seem to preclude them in the charge phase, but obviiky they couldn't do this in a normal move as they would have to spend that reforming??

Nick
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Re: Disordered units who are charged

Postby Archdukek » Sun Oct 15, 2017 5:52 pm

Hi Nick,
By "disordered" I assume you mean that the unit is Unformed?
There is nothing that I can see which prevents them from attempting to form square if charged by cavalry. However, they will have to pass a Discipline Test to do so and there is a -1 penalty for being Unformed when you take the test. So there's a greater chance of failure.

As you say they cannot form square voluntarily in the movement face as they must reform in the formation they were previously in.

John
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Re: Disordered units who are charged

Postby EQUITES » Mon Oct 16, 2017 2:35 pm

Hi John,
do you mean that, under charge phase, an unformed unit may form "an unformed square" ??
It's sound a little strange to me but I have to admit that the rules allow that...
Michele
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Re: Disordered units who are charged

Postby Archdukek » Mon Oct 16, 2017 5:30 pm

Hi Michele,
Yes that what I mean. While it may sound odd I can't see anything which says that an unformed unit cannot attempt to form an emergency square though you will need to roll an '8' to do so if in column or '9' if in line so a roughly 30% chance in the latter case. Not very good odds and still vulnerable in the subsequent charge procedure. The most likely outcome is that the unit will be caught in its original formation and suffer accordingly.

The degree of disorder when a unit is unformed is not defined as far as I can see and personally I don't have a problem with a unit having a chance to defend itself by forming square albeit a rather shaky one.

Happy to be told otherwise if it's not the case.

John
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Re: Disordered units who are charged

Postby Maturin » Mon Oct 16, 2017 8:44 pm

Hi John
Hmmm not sure what an unformed square represents?? A unit is either in the formation of a functioning square or an unformed formation that is not functioning as a square (or line, or column)not both.

As unformed units cannot change formation without reforming first, they would not be allowed to do this from line or column anyway (pg 59). So maybe allow a DT (with modifier for unformed)to get back into square if they were in square in the first place and the charge was from far enough out to allow them time to do so.
This however brings the possibility that a charged unformed unit could also reform back into column or line.
Tim
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Re: Disordered units who are charged

Postby Archdukek » Tue Oct 17, 2017 7:36 am

Hi Tim,
Looks like I have opened a can of worms with my suggestion.

I think it comes down to just how disrupted you feel an Unformed unit is. The description on page 83 says that : "The unit has lost order and formation, with officers unable to give effective commands. As such , the unit loses its ability to volley efficiently and is more vulnerable in Charge Combat and Melee."

To my mind this is not a disorganised rabble, but a unit that can still fight and potentially resist enemy charges as the rules currently permit. It isn't as efficient as a formed unit but equally isn't so disrupted as to forget it's training when threatened by a charge from enemy cavalry and can therefore can still attempt to form an emergency square as per the rule in 5 b ii on page 44 which is what Nick originally asked about. Though the probability of it doing so successfully is significantly reduced.

However, I didn't feel justified in suggesting that passing the Discipline Test in that case constituted the unit reforming completely and removing the Unformed penalty. So to me an "unformed square" would be one which has formed but is wavering to some degree and therefore is less effective and more likely to break.

Does that help at all?

John
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Re: Disordered units who are charged

Postby nikjen66 » Tue Oct 17, 2017 8:08 am

Morning John,

I agree with your view. A unit will reform
In the formation it was in originally so an emergency formation to square and the unit being stuck in square until it reforms makes sense.
When a unit becomes unformed from melee/DT it retains its formation/place in the line/footprint. It's not like a rout/retreat at that point.

So as I opened the can of worms in the first instance, and as Dave hasn't given us his thoughts yet, my view is that unformed infantry in square can attempt to form square, but will remain an 'unformed' unit.

Nick
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Re: Disordered units who are charged

Postby Archdukek » Tue Oct 17, 2017 9:36 am

Morning Nick,
I'm assuming that you meant to say "unformed infantry in column or line can attempt to form square, but will remain an 'unformed' unit." :D

John
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Re: Disordered units who are charged

Postby DCRBrown » Tue Oct 17, 2017 4:26 pm

Quick reply as I'm jumping from playing WW2 with Lardy Rich back to Naps!

Yes - it's as you state - unformed units can change formation to square if charged but remain unformed until a complete turn is spent reordering the ranks.

So, yes your square is slightly disordered or maybe incomplete, (a bit like the British Highland square at Quatre Bras!) and so more vulnerable to chargers, etc.

DB
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Re: Disordered units who are charged

Postby Maturin » Tue Oct 17, 2017 7:23 pm

Hi Dave
Thanks for the clarification.
Would a unit unformed but in column charged by cavalry also then be in an 'unformed column' and retain the column vs cavalry modifier? or is it just unformed squares that count for this ruling?
Tim
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