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Thread: Post your Empire battle formations

  1. #1
    Senior Member Senior Member Graphic's Avatar
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    Default Post your Empire battle formations

    I don't know many of the finer points of this era's warfare so I'm mostly just making it up as I go along. I've found that staggering the lines is working good, with the more accurate infantry in front, with better melee infantry in back. First line will do the early shooting kills, with the 2nd line shooting through the gaps. Then when it gets around to melee time the melee infantry will take over. Works OK so far.


  2. #2

    Default Re: Post your Empire battle formations

    it's called LINE infantry for a reason. form a continues line (if you have the troops to pull it off), lights and cavalry on the flanks, guards/grenadiers in support.

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    Senior Member Senior Member Graphic's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post your Empire battle formations

    Quote Originally Posted by Belid Hagen View Post
    it's called LINE infantry for a reason.
    That picture contains Minute Men and Colonial Militia.

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    Member Member ZombieFriedNuts's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post your Empire battle formations

    Donít the units in the second row shoot the front units in the back doing that formation? Thatís what happened to me when I wasnít paying attention
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  5. #5

    Default Re: Post your Empire battle formations

    In the Napoleonic era, massed batteries rule. The early cannon in the game though are not quite that effective, so the best way to use them is to deploy them in the gaps between infantry units (pretty much as done historically, in fact).

    I like to always deploy in two lines, with the cavalry behind in a third line (usually out on the flanks), ready to charge out and wreck havoc. Second line is never set to fire at will... you need to manually control that, unless you'd like to have them shoot your first line in the back.

    If the enemy only attacks one end of your line, swing your other troops round to enfilade them at the double.

    Some light infantry thrown out in front of your army can be very effective. They get to fire first at long range (causing the enemy attack to become more chaotic as they try to deploy) and can then fall back on your main body of troops (never let them get into a firefight).
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    The Laughing Knight Member Sir Beane's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post your Empire battle formations

    I like to use as big a line as possible, with the wings wide so I can envelop the enemy and catch them in the cross fire. Skirmishers work well on the wings with Line infantry in the middle.


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    Member Member Murmandamus's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post your Empire battle formations

    That first post looks like the old Roman quincunx formation :)

    I've only done a few decent sized battles so far, but I'm using pretty much the same tactics I used in previous titles. Fairly standard Byzantine tactics, but with the wings (usually strong offensive infantry units instead of cavalry) tucked in behind the main line to make the AI engage the main line. Then once the enemy is engaged or in a suitable position I move the wings out to form an L or U shape as required so they can attack the flanks.

    So I have the bulk in a single line with a couple gaps for artillery if needed. Artillery and a few reserve units in the second line. Grenadeirs might work well in the second line, being able to throw over the first line instead of shooting them in the back like a standard unit would :)

    Then I have 2 groups of 2-3 units on both sides as wings, but with them starting partly behind my main line.

    Cavalry with the wings, but I don't use them much because they take too much micro for me. Mainly for running down fleeing units to make sure they don't come back, then return into the rear of any enemy units that are still fighting. I rarely have more than 2 cavalry units in my armies besides the generals unit.
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  8. #8
    The Dam Dog Senior Member Sheogorath's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post your Empire battle formations

    Quote Originally Posted by Strategy View Post
    In the Napoleonic era, massed batteries rule. The early cannon in the game though are not quite that effective, so the best way to use them is to deploy them in the gaps between infantry units (pretty much as done historically, in fact).

    I like to always deploy in two lines, with the cavalry behind in a third line (usually out on the flanks), ready to charge out and wreck havoc. Second line is never set to fire at will... you need to manually control that, unless you'd like to have them shoot your first line in the back.

    If the enemy only attacks one end of your line, swing your other troops round to enfilade them at the double.

    Some light infantry thrown out in front of your army can be very effective. They get to fire first at long range (causing the enemy attack to become more chaotic as they try to deploy) and can then fall back on your main body of troops (never let them get into a firefight).
    This is actually (more or less) the preferred historical Russian strategy during the Napoleonic Wars. They usually deployed their infantry in columns in a 'checkerboard' pattern with artillery in the front gaps. This generally enabled their close support arty to do the most damage in most situations to the enemy infantry, while the Russian infantry closed as quickly as possible to melee. The arty took the place of musket volleys, since the Ruskies were generally such terrible shots.

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  9. #9
    Slixpoitation Member A Very Super Market's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post your Empire battle formations

    Terrible shots? Everybody was horrible at shotting back then..
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  10. #10
    The Dam Dog Senior Member Sheogorath's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post your Empire battle formations

    Quote Originally Posted by A Very Super Market View Post
    Terrible shots? Everybody was horrible at shotting back then..
    The Russians were renowned for their terrible marksmanship, even at a time when you probably couldn't put two shots in the same square inch of space from five yards away.
    I believe there is a quote from a French officer who noted that a group of Russians fired on his men from sixty paces and failed to inflict a single casualty.
    Naturally, as with all armies, there was a great deal of variation, so there were probably some Russian units with excellent marksmanship, but these would be rare.

    Essentially it was down to training. Russian linesmen were allowed two shots per month for training. I think the British allowed 24 or so for line troops, of course, they would have a higher than normal standard for marksmanship...
    Tallyho lads, rape the houses and burn the women! Leave not a single potted plant alive! Full speed ahead and damn the cheesemongers!

  11. #11

    Default Re: Post your Empire battle formations

    I've heard a rumour that it's easier to shoot when drunk off gin than it is off vodkaa.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Post your Empire battle formations

    Well, here of course you place your troops in long lines, but I tend to keep a few infantry (maybe 20% of the total force) in columns at the back for a rapid reserve force (either to punch with if the enemy charge or to deploy in lines if one of the front forces fail).

    Also, don't forget the usefulness of asking your front line to fall back and letting the second line step forward to take up firing position.

    One aspect I like about the game is the way 18th Century tactics actually play out pretty well in this game. In that sense, it is perhaps the most historically faithful of the TW games.
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  13. #13

    Default Re: Post your Empire battle formations

    I use the collapsing line as Sweden, works well, cavalry on either side.. Think it's called that anyway, you collapse the middle and surround the enemy completely and quickly with it.

    Always put DEATH on the enemy.... :P

  14. #14
    Bland Assassin Member Zatoichi's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post your Empire battle formations

    So far, terrain permitting, I've been having a lot of success with a snaking line - the firing arcs overlap and can set up some decent killing zones which the enemy has to traverse to get into melee. It helps to have your flanks protected by a couple of reserve units to stop envelopment - these can then swing round and create a crossfire once the enemy has committed.

    Mind you, I'm still playing the RTI campaign, so this formation may be terrible against a better set of enemies on higher difficulty!

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