Deployment vs ambush

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Forst
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Deployment vs ambush

Post by Forst »

My barbarian force is German, so when looking at Armenia wall and what it offers, I noticed that it implied that the restrictions on numbers/types of units ambushing from low standing terrain that on page 42 only appear in the ambush section also apply to deployment.

Logical, but not actually implied by the wording on p42 as it's under ambush section only!

As ambush/ deployment points are capable of being down graded to deployment only points then this may cause some issues.

I therefore suggest a rule that deployment from low standing terrain is normally restricted to single non cav units unless extra cards are used? Same as ambush!

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Captain Reid
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Re: Deployment vs ambush

Post by Captain Reid »

I disagree.

Any number of Groups of any permitted type may use a DP, page 42 (paras 2 and 3) is quite specific about that. Ambushes have different restrictions (for instance, Romans with Flexible Drill may Deploy in any Order from an AP/DP, but may only Ambush from an AP if they are in Skirmish Order.
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Forst
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Re: Deployment vs ambush

Post by Forst »

ok.
Not sure about auxiliaries with flexible drill. The faq/errata sheet says they deploy and ambush as skirmishers. But can reorder on command if deploying.

Forst
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Re: Deployment vs ambush

Post by Forst »

'Arminius wall' still says it allows mounted troops to deploy from low terrain with the wall. But p42 doesnt seem to prevent this anyway so why specify it? So the two entries appear to imply different interpretations of what can normally deploy where.

Logic still suggests that large numbers of men and horses are difficult to hide in low terrain without something like the wall as camoflage, so more restrictive criteria as per the ambush ones make sense for deployment as well.

The use of cards mean restrictions can be overcome with luck/planning so large groups can work.

The unrestricted numbers suggest to me the intention was to imply it is legit to deploy only part of a command from such a point, and not implicit all must do so?

Forst
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Re: Deployment vs ambush

Post by Forst »

'Arminius wall' still says it allows mounted troops to deploy from low terrain with the wall. But p42 doesnt seem to prevent this anyway so why specify it? So the two entries appear to imply different interpretations of what can normally deploy where.

Logic still suggests that large numbers of men and horses are difficult to hide in low terrain without something like the wall as camoflage, so more restrictive criteria as per the ambush ones make sense for deployment as well.

The use of cards mean restrictions can be overcome with luck/planning so large groups can work.

The unrestricted numbers suggest to me the intention was to imply it is legit to deploy only part of a command from such a point, and not implicit all must do so?

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Captain Reid
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Re: Deployment vs ambush

Post by Captain Reid »

I think your reading a bit too much into the wording of the special rule.

Deployment and Ambush have different parameters for different troop types.

But if you'd rather impose extra restrictions on some Deployment you can
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Waterhorse
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Re: Deployment vs ambush

Post by Waterhorse »

Deployment? Oh goodie my favourite! 😀

The accepted (or not) wisdom regarding low terrain is that it allows for units hiding in folds in the ground. That's common to many rules and does have some merit, although somewhat of a get out. That said, having walked the battlefield of Salamanca (for example) and seen where Le Marchant was able to hide an entire Cavalry Brigade, I'm inclined to go with it.

My agitation (as expressed several times) has more to do with the matter of Deployment points per se. The number given to Barbarians playing at home (6 plus their own Deployment Zone) is and will remain the "Carthage must be destroyed!" chant of the rules, for my money.

Such is the value of this facility that my pet Barbarian scarcely bothers with Ambush anymore. Preferring to use Deployment to pour such of the entire content of his troop box, as he sees fit, from anywhere close enough to hem the Romans in, before they can get a foot hold. While holding the Deployment zone for anything denied him, such as Chariots, whose stupid speed allows pretty much the same effect anyway.

The one restriction I would choose would be an unchangeable written listing of where any Group is located prior to the start of the game. Just to counter some of the imbalance, where the Roman deployment is pretty much a given but Barbarians are always in with a chance of being exactly in the right place at the right time, thanks to them not being committed to using any one location in advance.

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Captain Reid
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Re: Deployment vs ambush

Post by Captain Reid »

If you tie units to a specific AP/DP/DZ then what do you do if the enemy removes said AP/DP before they've deployed from it?
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Waterhorse
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Re: Deployment vs ambush

Post by Waterhorse »

When we have tried using this a couple of times before moving on to test out other things I have mentioned on threads and it seems to work OK.

Given that the Barbarians at Home have 6 AP/DP and most of the time Romans are only going to be able to Scout four of them, then given how the process works and the chance to screen, the Barbarians will most likely have four to use. Now as we have mentioned before, the variation of the terrain generation makes it very hard to say anything is a done deal where Infamy is concerned, but we have found enough opportunity to use DPs effectively with out losing them, after the game starts. It does make the Barbarians think where they put them but that's no bad thing.

If they appear likely to be threatened, most of the time the worse that can happen is the force is flushed out. Its a test of nerve, just as it is in the rules anyway. Do you spring your ambush or wait for a better chance? OK the run of the cards might make this hard from time to time but on the other hand its not like the game's played on a tennis court, or there's totally hidden movement. You know where they are headed, deploy and do something about it!

Its a bloody sight better deal than the Romans get! At least if your Nobles are not quite where they need to be to block, you can try to hold back and appear in the rear! Why should it be that the Romans toughest troops starting point is always completely obvious, when the Barbarians can place there's mentally and then change the physical location at any time they like and appear a tactical genius?

Yes, you can rationalize and say "Oh well, its their terrain and anyway Romans would follow known paths!" and also Romans are congenital idiots, obviously. I don't disagree that homespun fieldcraft would favour the locals, but for the Roman whereabouts to be know with unswerving accuracy, every time, when the Barbarians not only get more choices, they can change at a whim, really is dumb.

Then of course there's the double up ploy. You put you Warriors or Nobles in a DP, with your Fanatics somewhere else in an AP. The AP gets removed or reduced to a DP. No worries, you have an opportunity to move the former Groups to the latter, if its now a DP and file out, with the Fanatics hidden behind to Ambush anyway. Or if the AP/DP has been removed just reverse the process by "moving" the Fanatics to the Warriors instead.

Its like playing chess and having to give you opponent your Opening, in advance, every time you play. Nuts!

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Captain Reid
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Re: Deployment vs ambush

Post by Captain Reid »

I often remove barbarian APs during the game (not in the scouting phase). What would you do then?

While I tend to agree that when in barbarian territory it feels too easy for barbarians to ambush - or perhaps it's just the lack of ability to react to an ambush launched from a good 60+ yards away - I don't find the number of APs/DPs much of an issue. Some of the scenarios (especially Escort) are extremely hard as the Romans, but then others (especially Ubique) are much more straightforward.

Historically of course it's very hard to say how much barbarians did Ambush (my own opinion is 'not much', as it happens). Perhaps restricting Ambush to fanatics, cavalry and skirmish troops might be an alternative solution for you.
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