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Thread: AMERICA: The key to victory against Native American armies

  1. #1
    Guardian of the Fleet Senior Member Shahed's Avatar
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    Lightbulb AMERICA: The key to victory against Native American armies

    Greetings everyone,

    I've read a fair bit about people having a hard time with the Native Americans. I did at first as well but not anymore. The solution is not to go defensive, although the temptation for fougasse and earth works etc.. is high. It is better to attack and don't be on the defensive. Once you're attacking you can dictate how the battle unfolds. My North American armies as the UK pretty much cake walked all over America. They mostly consist of:

    • General
    • 3 Light Dragoons
    • 2 Direct Fire Artillery (12lber, 24lber)
    • 2 Indirect Fire Artillery (howitzers not mortars)
    • 6 Line Infantry (split into 3 sections. 1 unit held in reserve)
    • 2 Grenadiers/Guards (1 on each flank, firefighting force)
    • 4 Green Jackets (2 on each flank)


    Once I have a good firing position and I am sure that spot will be the main battle zone I deploy like this:



    Once the enemy begins his attack you have to be very flexible, block groups of infantry with your cavalry charges while your infantry forms up to enfilade, always change formation and don't let them hit you all at once. It's pretty much essential to your survival to not allow them to hit you all at once and at one spot. If you can hold the above formation then it's even better, try to lure the enemy into canister shot while getting hit from both sides by line fire, but don't count on the formation, always change positions and always try to get your units to enfilade. That's pretty much a basic rule anyway for any open field battle. Use your infatry in ranks of 2, you probably won't get off more than 2 ranks to fire before the zerg hits. Once you've fired your ranks, charge. No point in waiting for them to hit you. If you feel that you can get more ranks to fire, reform and keep shooting.

    The way to go is to pick off one army at a time if possible and always be on the offensive.

    I'm open to any other tactics and suggestions btw, so fire away!

    Credit for some ideas: Royal Artillery School

    Salute!
    Last edited by Shahed; 03-26-2009 at 16:06.
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  2. #2

    Default Re: AMERICA: The key to victory against Native American armies

    thanks for the tip, but at the time one has green jackets the indian problem is long solved; indians are a problem when trying to deal with them in the first 10 years of the campaign. then, while you don't have a nicely developed infrastructure in NA you suffer comparable casualties and them and can hardly afford to.
    afterwards, after you get fire by rank, you're cool. use the native musketeers as a tie-up force in front of your army and devastate the "wild injuns" with howitzers and line infatry (fire by rank).

  3. #3
    pardon my klatchian Member al Roumi's Avatar
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    Default Re: AMERICA: The key to victory against Native American armies

    Quote Originally Posted by loony View Post
    thanks for the tip, but at the time one has green jackets the indian problem is long solved; indians are a problem when trying to deal with them in the first 10 years of the campaign. then, while you don't have a nicely developed infrastructure in NA you suffer comparable casualties and them and can hardly afford to.
    afterwards, after you get fire by rank, you're cool. use the native musketeers as a tie-up force in front of your army and devastate the "wild injuns" with howitzers and line infatry (fire by rank).
    I agree, fire by rank and top tier bayonet & drills spell doom for the Cherokee and Iroquoi, anyway you look at it.

    I've found, at lower tech levels, that a fixing force of infantry (line or militia will do) with large wings of flanking cavalry are the best way of despatching the indians. Fix the indian infantry with your main line, do what damage you can at range then once they have engaged you in melee, sweep in with your cavalry to the rear/flank of their units.

    Thinking about it, it's a classic MTW2 tactic, but it still took me a while to think to use it! Being so wrapped up in using gunpowder to decimate the enemy from afar can be distracting...

    (probably wouldn't recommend even this though without the bare minimum of plug bayonets)

  4. #4

    Default Re: AMERICA: The key to victory against Native American armies

    WTF?!? I thought the key to victory was autocalc!

    Well, your army is a far cry from the one I used in America. Hell, I didn't even have a single piece of artillery until all the Hurons were dead. Half of my army was militia or natives. Had Hessians instead of British Line, rangers (with no skirmishing ability) instead of rifles, native cav instead of light dragoons. Bayonets? Bah! I use my gun as a sophisticated club! There were meat grinder battles all around, but it was fast expansion. Loony has it right, send in the natives and keep firing

    In regard to your formation, switch indirect artillery with the line infantry behind it. Because:

    1) Arty will get shot up if they're close to the front line when musket volleys are coming in, even if they're behind a line of infantry. Stray bullets and such most of the time, but light infantry can pick them off while they're behind another unit.

    2) You will have in effect a mass infantry column in the middle that can smash through a 3 rank line.

    You might also want to stack some light infantry on top of your direct fire artillery. IMO the grenadiers can take the 2 spots where you have the rifles units facing left and right. Rifles aren't going to stop a full-size infantry unit, but grenades can. I've seen up to 40-50% of a unit wiped out by a single (and well thrown) grenade volley.

    I notice there's no units on the flanks that can form square.....
    Last edited by Marquis of Roland; 03-26-2009 at 23:36.

  5. #5
    Gognard Member MikeV's Avatar
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    Default Re: AMERICA: The key to victory against Native American armies

    Quote Originally Posted by Sinan View Post
    Once I have a good firing position and I am sure that spot will be the main battle zone I deploy like this:
    ...

    Credit for some ideas: Royal Artillery School
    Wow, beautiful diagram!

    As others have pointed out, that's a great late-game system. I tried something much simpler, early on: an artillery unit or two, guarded by humble Pikemen (from Ireland), anchoring the center. Colonial line/militia units forming the line to either side. Native cavalry/dragoons as flank guards and tactical reserve.

    Note that the AI rushes their cavalry immediately, losing contact with whatever infantry support they have. They can be engaged/routed early (they have an unfortunate algorithm of focusing on the artillery, which you can exploit to annihilate them ) -- just remember to recall your units to ready them for the 2nd wave.

    The native infantry are no match for musket fire during the approach, envelopment via cavalry and/or end-line infantry, and the final bayonet charge. If you've researched Grapeshot for the artillery, so much the better.
    Last edited by MikeV; 03-27-2009 at 02:05.
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  6. #6

    Default Re: AMERICA: The key to victory against Native American armies

    For me, the best way to deal with natives is to be defensive yet flexible. I'm about mid-game (in the RTI).

    My army usually consists of:
    1-2 artillery (always have at least one howitzer)
    General
    4-5 Line infantry
    2 Dragoons
    1-2 light dragoons
    2 Regiment cavalry
    and occasionally grenadiers or rangers

    With this army (usually around 1200 strong), I can take on a native army about 1600 without much trouble.

    My plan is to have the line infantry in rows of three spanning in front of the artillery (they have fire-by-rank). Rangers/grenadiers on the flanks just in case I can't catch a flanking unit in time with my line infantry. Dragoons and regiment cavalry are always hidden somewhere on the flanks, as I bring them in only when A) I really need them, or B) there is a weak spot in their army. No need for unneccessary casualties. Finally, my General sits behind the artillery.

    I let them get beaten down a bit by the artillery, until either they charge me or I have to move in on them. If they charge you, make sure everyone is on fire at will and defensive positions, and the line infantry will slaughter them. Be prepared to have your units on the flanks curl back on the sides just in case a unit tries to get around you. If you need to move in, leave units with your artillery and move the rest of your army en masse. When the timing is right, you'll have them backed into a corner, this is when you have your men double time it and quickly form a U shape around the enemy. If done right, you'll slughter them.

    But above all, be ready to send in cavalry to help, and be ready to move your flanking troops into either defensive or offensive positions when need be.

  7. #7
    Villiage Idiot Member antisocialmunky's Avatar
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    Default Re: AMERICA: The key to victory against Native American armies

    Its too bad you can't give them small pox blankets.

    Diplomacy Screen -> Government Gift -> Blankets.
    Fighting isn't about winning, it's about depriving your enemy of all options except to lose.



    "Hi, Billy Mays Here!" 1958-2009

  8. #8
    pardon my klatchian Member al Roumi's Avatar
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    Default Re: AMERICA: The key to victory against Native American armies

    Quote Originally Posted by antisocialmunky View Post
    Its too bad you can't give them small pox blankets.

    Diplomacy Screen -> Government Gift -> Blankets.
    as bad as that sounds, i did think the same when playing as France and under attack from the Iroquoi, Huron and English at the same time. Mind you, there are quick-lime shells int he game so...

  9. #9
    Member Member Oleander Ardens's Avatar
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    Default Re: AMERICA: The key to victory against Native American armies

    Nice formation, I like the green jackets on the flanks. With the stakes and the good defense and the bajonet they should stop cavalry dead in their tracks...
    "Silent enim leges inter arma - For among arms, the laws fall mute"
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  10. #10
    Member Member BeastRabban's Avatar
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    Default Re: AMERICA: The key to victory against Native American armies

    What about repulsing mass charges of Native American Melee Warriors? I keep getting totally blitzed by masses of Cherokee melee warriors just charging straight into hand to hand combat. I have Line Infantry and Grenadiers with Fire By Rank, etc but they just get overwhelmed every time. Defensive battles are the worst. Also, how farkin huge are these NA armies? I've wiped out three or four armies (using with my army barely surviving and taking 3 -4 turns to replenish) only to have to fight another 3 -4 armies of the same size. Is this a bug or something?

  11. #11

    Default Re: AMERICA: The key to victory against Native American armies

    I survived a full stack of melee warriors with liberal use of grapeshot. To be fair, my own line infantry were decimated, but they usually are whenever I play a defensive battle. Never had a problem with constant massed stacks. I think the Iroquois hit me with 3 full stacks, the Cherokee with 1 (full of their top-of-the-line tomahawk throwing shock troops! That was easily the hairiest battle I've ever been in.)...

    And that's about it. The others were relative walkovers... of course I was playing on medium, so...

  12. #12

    Default Re: AMERICA: The key to victory against Native American armies

    I too had problems with Native Americans in the beginning, but I eventually figured out some tricks that I can use even with very early armies.

    My armies usually consist of:
    1-2 general's bodyguard (one of which is the actual general)
    4 dragoons
    14 Colonial Line Infantry

    For techs, the bayonettes are helpful, as is square formation and Fire-by-Rank, but they're not necessary.

    The Native Americans basically have 3 troop types
    - Fast melee (lancers)
    - Slow melee (warriors, etc.)
    - Sneaky long-range missiles (Bowmen)

    I keep my CLI in 3-rank blocks and break them up into 4 groups of 3 and 1 reserve group of 2. I line them up in a straight line and advance. Their cavalry is usually the first to attack. They tend to hit the center since my dragoons keep them off the flanks. When their cavalry comes near, just stop the general advance. Your CLIs will get a volley off before they charge. Take the charge, you'll be fine. For whichever CLI groups the NA cavalry engages, turn Fire at Will off, turn Melee on, and turn Hold Position off. That will tell your CLIs to envelop the NA cavalry and stab them to death. The cav will flee. When they do, return the 3 settings to the way they were.

    The melee infantry will come next. Repeat the way you dealt with cav. Though this time, now that the cav have broken and are fleeing, once the foot melee engages your CLIs, send your Dragoons around back to hunt down and slaughter the Bowmen and Musketmen.

    Be sure to use your 2 HQ units to stand behind the parts of your CLI line that are getting charged a lot. The HQ units boost morale, so will help prevent your own units from breaking, which helps prevent breakthroughs. In the event the enemy breaks through, slide in the 2 reserve CLIs.

    Something else, your line of 12 CLIs, 3 ranks deep, will be VERY long. The natives almost never attack in a line. This means your line will be longer than their front of attack. Once the NAs start charging, start swinging the 3-unit groups on either side of your line around and turn your CLIs into a triangle that completely envelops the NAs once their foot melee has charged. This will break their morale very quickly, wrack up a ton of kills, and prevents NA units from escaping and raiding your buildings in future turns.
    Fac et Spera

  13. #13

    Default Re: AMERICA: The key to victory against Native American armies

    I have found the easiest offense against the indians is the same one that the English/the United States used in real life.

    Send a stack of assorted (mostly cheap) infantry into their territory with a general . Create a fort. The stack doesn't have to be full, a half stack will do. The indians will attack twice depleting their entire army stacks. Counterattack with a full stack of assorted units (including the units in the fort).

    I have never lost a single battle with the indians since using this. This also keeps the indians from sneaking into your territories and causing trouble.

    Some people may think this is lame but it has worked for me. Some of the battles were pretty interesting, reminding me of the cowboy and indian type movies with indian lancers circling the fort , waiting their turn to get in.

  14. #14

    Default Re: AMERICA: The key to victory against Native American armies

    Do you autocalc the fort battles? My experience with forts is that they're crappy. Unit formation on the walls is buggy. The wall canons hardly kill anything. The riflemen on the walls don't fire like they should.
    Fac et Spera

  15. #15

    Default Re: AMERICA: The key to victory against Native American armies

    Quote Originally Posted by Servius1234 View Post
    Do you autocalc the fort battles? My experience with forts is that they're crappy. Unit formation on the walls is buggy. The wall canons hardly kill anything. The riflemen on the walls don't fire like they should.
    I Never autocalc.

    Place one unit on each wall in the center. The worst units such as militia work well for this as they are cheap and will take the brunt of the first attack.
    Place every other unit to make a 'real' defensive square inside the fort. Place the heaviest unit (line infantry for example) in front of the gate (on the inside of the fort) in case the gate is forced open. Place a unit in the blockhouse only if the entire unit will fit inside. That unit should never be an indian unit as there is some problem with them attempting to hide or something inside the building. They never fire a shot if placed there. Rangers or frontiersmen (english or spanish equivelant type unit.) fit in there most of the time. The blockhouse seems to get larger over time.

    The general unit should hold the middle of the fort.

    If you have native american musketeers , hide them outside facing toward the fort. They will kill many of the attackers before they get to the walls. Same goes for the mounted indians (my favorite) . Have them hide or withdraw after they do their attack damage as sooner or later , the lancers will come up to engage them.

    I use these forts to "hold" certain Indian factions until I am ready to deal with them. About every 3 or 4 turn, they do get reenforced. My highest promoted general came from surviving the Indian wars using this plan. If I am just holding the fort while involved in another part of the map, I may reinforce the fort at some point in time.

    The only time I use the cannons on the walls is if the enemy has mostly lancers/mounted musketeers and just a couple of mellee units who will do the fighting. This generally occurs after the initial "rush" of attacks, generally the next turn. The mellee units still have to get the doors open to take the walls.

    I never use artillery in this situation. By the time I could get fixed mortars, I have generally cleared most of the Indian nations. Regular artillary seems to just get in the way or worse, kills my own units. Most of the time I can finish it before I can build Grenediers at any of my North American territories.

    I have had a couple of close calls, but for the most part, I am able to move defenders out toward the enemies. I only autocalc when I am in a hurry.

  16. #16
    Member Member Didz's Avatar
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    Default Re: AMERICA: The key to victory against Native American armies

    So, far in my American Campaign I've found the hardest thing about defeating an native indian army is finding them.

    Their favourite tactic seems to be to place their Chief right out in the open where I can see him but them surround his location with hidden warriors and bowmen so if I try and attack him I get ambushed.

    Got wise to that trick now, and usually take at least one unit of frontiersmen with men who sneak up to within range and snipe the Chief with their long rifles. But its a dodgy job.
    Didz
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  17. #17
    pardon my klatchian Member al Roumi's Avatar
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    Default Re: AMERICA: The key to victory against Native American armies

    Frontiersmen are good for that as they have comparable range (if not more) than indian bowmen. Unfortunately you don't really get to spam them and losing many of them can be a pain... plus only the US get them of course.

    Generals can (still) never hide, and the Ai is quite precious of them (rightly so). I've found that targetting their general with cannon is a useful preamble to the main engagement in that a) killing him is good for the ensuing fracas with the rest of the Indian army b) your innacurate cannon fire will often damage other (hidden) units around the general and c) the AI often responds to being targetted by artillery fire by moving around -on occasion revealing it's units.

  18. #18
    Member Member Didz's Avatar
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    Default Re: AMERICA: The key to victory against Native American armies

    Must admit I was pleased to see that the bowmen had been given a longer range than the musketmen, even though it is a pain to deal with.
    Last edited by Didz; 04-16-2009 at 14:44.
    Didz
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  19. #19

    Default Re: AMERICA: The key to victory against Native American armies

    How about this:

    1 General
    19 Heavy Cavalry/Cuirassiers

    The natives all have weak defence, so why not charge them to death? Of course you would need awesome coordination or just a lot of pausing.

  20. #20
    pardon my klatchian Member al Roumi's Avatar
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    Default Re: AMERICA: The key to victory against Native American armies

    Quote Originally Posted by joe4iz View Post
    Send a stack of assorted (mostly cheap) infantry into their territory with a general . Create a fort. The stack doesn't have to be full, a half stack will do. The indians will attack twice depleting their entire army stacks. Counterattack with a full stack of assorted units (including the units in the fort).

    I have never lost a single battle with the indians since using this. This also keeps the indians from sneaking into your territories and causing trouble.

    Some people may think this is lame but it has worked for me. Some of the battles were pretty interesting, reminding me of the cowboy and indian type movies with indian lancers circling the fort , waiting their turn to get in.

    I used this strategy to great effect last night. It's really helpfull when trying to take the isolated indian regions -those that somehow have 1.5-2.5 full stacks in them... I even used it against French held Newfoundland (90% of their army was native bowmen too!)

    If you move your stack to just outside the intercept radius of the enemy armies, and build your wooden fort there, the enemy will attack you in their turn, bringing in (often) their entire forces in the region in waves of reinforcements. Providing you win (and the odds should be heavily in your favour), the door to capturing the region capitol will be wide open.

    The wooden fort you build is quite small on the battle map, so things get a bit crowded for cavalry, general and arty in the centre. Contrary to Joe4iz, I was using a regular field army (approx 3/4 of a stack) with mostly Hessian line inf, but with some colonial line inf, rangers and native muskets with support on the wall from some dragoons.

    Try to keep your line inf at the main contact points -you may need to swap units around as you repel the different waves of attackers. At least try to keep all 4 corners of the fort garrisoned as enemy cav will likely cricle the fort and can be picked off as they do -not to mention the fact that the corner units can provide a certain ammount of enfilade fire.

    Howitzers in the centre of the fort allow you to attack the enemy as they advance, softening them up a bit, but cannon are not much use other than ready to cannister anyone who might get through the gates (keep FaW off though or they will fire at the melee on the walls -damaging your units!). Any surplus dragoons or other cavalry can, if terrain allows, be placed outside the fort to help attacking units that are assaulting the walls, but be careful that you don't leave them out on a limb or that enemy reinforcements don't cut them off.

  21. #21
    Spiritual Jedi Member maestro's Avatar
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    Default Re: AMERICA: The key to victory against Native American armies

    Nice tactics and a great diagram, but I can't see how there's still gonna be Injuns to deal with when you're at such a late tech stage
    Isn't it funny how people trash God and then wonder why the world's going to hell?

  22. #22

    Default Re: AMERICA: The key to victory against Native American armies

    I personally found the solution to the Native Americans is to do nothing but autocalc them to death until I start rocking up to their territories with at least half a dozen units of howitzers with explosive shells. They never do quite as well in the autocalc, and even worse in a hell of fire and shrapnel. Cavalry love howitzers, one good hit with the boom-boom and they all politely die for me.
    Love is a well aimed 24 pounder howitzer with percussion shells.

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