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Thread: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

  1. #1
    Member Member Gilrandir's Avatar
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    Default Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    As I plan this campaign I see 2 possible objectives at the start of it:
    1) checking the Polish expansion to the east;
    2) stopping the Horde.
    The first one does not seem very annoying: I plan to capture Lithuania pretty soon in the game (during 5-7 turns) and hold the two-province border (Lith and Kiev) against any incursions from the west (Polish and possibly Hungarian).
    But the Horde! My vision of fending it off is to form an eastern river frontier (Muscovy, Ryazan, Chernigov and Kiev all have river borders with anything to the east which is sure to be held by Mongols). The weak point of this plan is Pereyaslavl that is wide open from any direction. But having watched the Horde's behavior in many campaigns I assume that it will invariably move from Khazar westward to Kiev and I will try to get ready the troops for a huge bridge battle. The Mongols' other possible ways of invasion from Volga-Bulgaria will meet the same fate in Muscovy or Ryazan. After defeating the bulk of the nomads I hope them to direct their wrath southward (to Georgia and further on). The likely pitfall on this brilliant way is the Rus unit roster: no decent spears. But hopefully mercs will step in to help. And when I muster enough force I will try to evict the Mongols from Khazar and Volgo-Bulgaria leaving them a foothold in Crimea.
    Any objections or advice that can improve my initial plans?
    And what about Khazar before 1230? Should I capture it and leave a small garrison (1 halbs and 1 spears) in a fort on a hill to distract the Horde or should I not dawdle away with it?
    Spill out anything you have in mind on the subject.

  2. #2
    Needs more flowers Moderator drone's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    Brave man.

    For the Horde, definitely try to stick with bridge defenses. You can build Armored Spearmen, but the better choice is halberdiers, they will chew up the Horde cavalry on the bridges, just be careful to manage their fatigue levels and don't let them get shot to pieces needlessly. Go with arbalests (or crossbows) if you can for better range and killing power during the battle. Druzhina Cavalry are also useful, they dismount to Feudal Foot Knights (full unit size) which should be exploited.
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  3. #3

    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    hmm.
    Russia vs Cenghiz (Horde).
    Capture all Russia except Khazar.
    After capturing Khazar, Horde always attack on Volga-Bulgaria under their Khagan.
    If u put al your army to ther they bring their all force but iff you left Volga with your best troops and best general they attack with just a small garrison. so u beat them. and so they direct their armies on Goergia and Turks.
    So after Horde divede their army u can easily erase them in 5-10 years.
    AI is looking your troops number. More army in borders of Khazar means Horde will attack on your lands.
    If u dont lost Volga Horde cant stay more in your lands.

    great war or main war : in one point against horde therie used to be a great war. they attack with their all force or you'll attack with on their all force with yours.
    They probably attack on Kiev. After your Volga manoeuvre.
    Make war in here if u have good army. I guess u are good at defending bridge battle,s so Kiev will be the place of the great war .sometime I experienced 5000 against 4000 in great war.
    In tactickly attacking is better then defending because of Khagan virtue of "Speccialsit attacker".
    If u believe you'll lost in great war retreat to castle and next year attack on them.
    So if u don't give any province's castle their army is go down like Napoleons' Great army.
    Good luck,
    Last edited by ferdi; 07-30-2013 at 19:36.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    Do you have Viking Invasion? If you do, then the more troops are in Kazar when the Mongols arrive, the more Mongols there will be.

    Also, bear in mind that the Khan arrives without any adult heirs. (I don't know if he has any little kids) So if you get a chance to kill him early on, then you will be dealing with rebel Mongols, who are easier to cope with and may well be worth bribing.
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    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    With Gold (VI), what is the variance og Mongol start point? When I played the Turks on "Early", they totally surprised me by starting in Armenia.

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    Member Member Gilrandir's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    I am aware of the Horde's appearing numbers' dependence on the quantity of troops in Khazar, but I myself never approach it and other factions (or rebel) troops' presence there cause a regular appearance of about 10-12 stacks of the nomads. So I expect to see that much of the Mongols in my game too. The same dependence is between the number of troops in Kiev and the Horde's prospective attacking numbers thereof. So I thought of keeping a small garrison in Kiev and replenishing it from Lithuania or Chernigov the same turn the Mongols attack Kiev (so that they don't know I'm bringing in reinforcements). But such a trick will only mean that they will keep a significant portion of their troops intact in Khazar and will attack me again with great numbers in a couple of years. So I'm still in two minds whether I should have two lesser battles instead of one but huge.
    As for trying to hold out in Volgo-Bulgaria, I think it is out of the question: if Mongols attack it from Khazar they won't have to cross any bridge, so their numbers will rule supreme.
    What about keeping a distracting garrison in Khazar? Is it worth it?
    Thank you all for sharing your mind and giving tips. If you have any new thoughts, you are welcome to express them.
    Last edited by Gilrandir; 07-31-2013 at 06:06.

  7. #7

    Cool Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    in vanilla game Horde could appeear in Khazar, Armenia, Georgia and Volga-Bulgaria. if u have put great garrison in Khazar they probably won't appear there. but ı dont exactly remember how rare this happens.
    In viking-invasion mods they appear in just in Khazar and with more troops then vanilla game(vanilla=5000 in mods 10.000+).
    Chernigov become (or will be) your gravity center after Horde take Khazar cause they became neighbour of your 5 province
    1-Volga-bulgaria 2-Ryazan 3-Chernigov 4-Pereyaslavl 5-Kiev
    so your main army will be there. and back up in Lithuania, Smolenks and Moscow.
    I learn Volga tacking by trying it. under 7 star general and with 60-80 men(one stock Boyar+ one Druzhina Cavalry) I always won cause they attack with 120-150 men may be least not more.
    your tactic
    I thought of keeping a small garrison in Kiev and replenishing it from Lithuania or Chernigov the same turn the Mongols attack Kiev (so that they don't know I'm bringing in reinforcements)
    will work. try it. Horde wont wait in Khazar with their all troops. they will attack other neighbors. if they appeared in Armenia and Khazar they probaly attack on Georgia,Turks or both but be careful about other provinces

  8. #8

    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    As drone has said, the bridge battle in Kiev is a good way to stall them, provided you have the right combination of crossbows, halbs, and heavy cav. And, yes, good idea keeping reinforcements in neighbouring provinces. Another thing I've done -- and it led to one of the most spectacular siege battles I ever played -- is fortify Khazar to the max -- upgrading to citadel with full artillery. The mongols are pretty bad at sieges, so a decent garrison of high valour troops should give them a run for their money. As I recall, the battle lasted well over an hour and, while I did eventually lose, the mongol forces were so heavily damaged that they presented only a minor threat thereafter.

    Also, your resolve to start in high will make preparations much more difficult. Good luck with that. For me, starting in early, I love being able to prepare slowly and meticulously. Also, Khazar heavy cavalry is only available in early, and I love stock-piling them to go against the horde.
    Last edited by Cyprian2; 08-03-2013 at 19:40.

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    Member Member Gilrandir's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    Quote Originally Posted by Cyprian2 View Post
    As drone has said, the bridge battle in Kiev is a good way to stall them, provided you have the right combination of crossbows, halbs, and heavy cav. And, yes, good idea keeping reinforcements in neighbouring provinces. Another thing I've done -- and it led to one of the most spectacular siege battles I ever played -- is fortify Khazar to the max -- upgrading to citadel with full artillery. The mongols are pretty bad at sieges, so a decent garrison of high valour troops should give them a run for their money. As I recall, the battle lasted well over an hour and, while I did eventually lose, the mongol forces were so heavily damaged that they presented only a minor threat thereafter.

    Also, your resolve to start in high will make preparations much more difficult. Good luck with that. For me, starting in early, I love being able to prepare slowly and meticulously. Also, Khazar heavy cavalry is only available in early, and I love stock-piling them to go against the horde.
    Holding out in Khazar is a good idea which I still debate with myself. But I'm afraid I won't have time (and perhaps money) to fortify the fortress that much. Plus a big fortress will demand a large garrison which will provoke greater Horde's numbers at appearence.
    Time will be a crucial factor for me, I'm even not sure if I will have halbs - I don't know what the starting levels of fortresses in Rus provinces are. And I will set out with 4 000 florins in my treasury only. So I will have to build a port in Kiev (to attract mercs) and in Novgorod plus a trading post plus a ship (possibly more that one) to get the trade started. And think about army training and fortress upgrading and building errection expenditures! Well, I expect my subjects will have to give every penny to be well prepared for the Horde.
    As for starting in early, I don't think one can do it with Russians (or People of Novgorod, as they are named) in my game, they are simply unavailable.
    But thank you for expressing your views.

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    Needs more flowers Moderator drone's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    Quote Originally Posted by Gilrandir View Post
    Time will be a crucial factor for me, I'm even not sure if I will have halbs - I don't know what the starting levels of fortresses in Rus provinces are. And I will set out with 4 000 florins in my treasury only. So I will have to build a port in Kiev (to attract mercs) and in Novgorod plus a trading post plus a ship (possibly more that one) to get the trade started. And think about army training and fortress upgrading and building errection expenditures! Well, I expect my subjects will have to give every penny to be well prepared for the Horde.
    In VI, both Muscovy and Novgorod have Citadels, complete with Town Militias, Bowyers Workshops, Horse Breeder Guilds and Armourers Guilds. Kiev has a Fort, Port, Town Watch, and Horse Farmer. Pereyaslavl only has an Inn. So you can start getting Halberdiers right away, and I would suggest going to Bowyers Guilds in either Muscovy or Novgorod to get Arbalests.
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  11. #11

    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    Quote Originally Posted by Gilrandir View Post
    Holding out in Khazar is a good idea which I still debate with myself. But I'm afraid I won't have time (and perhaps money) to fortify the fortress that much. Plus a big fortress will demand a large garrison which will provoke greater Horde's numbers at appearence. Time will be a crucial factor for me, I'm even not sure if I will have halbs - I don't know what the starting levels of fortresses in Rus provinces are. And I will set out with 4 000 florins in my treasury only. So I will have to build a port in Kiev (to attract mercs) and in Novgorod plus a trading post plus a ship (possibly more that one) to get the trade started. And think about army training and fortress upgrading and building errection expenditures! Well, I expect my subjects will have to give every penny to be well prepared for the Horde.
    As for starting in early, I don't think one can do it with Russians (or People of Novgorod, as they are named) in my game, they are simply unavailable.
    But thank you for expressing your views.
    Good points, Gilrandir. I should have mentioned that my "epic" siege of Khazar was fought as the Byzantines, having migrated to that area after many years of empire building. I completely forgot that the PoN are not available in Early. I guess I've been spoiled by too many mods!

    I think a war of attrition is the way to go with the Horde. Keeping your garrisons down in the emergent provinces is definitely a good idea. The nice thing about a citadel is that even a small garrison can stall (and do great damage to) an advancing host. You might also consider letting said provinces rebel after stripping them of military buildings (no armourer, obviously), which will prevent the horde from teching up too soon, and give you that much more time to create a bottle-neck in Kiev in which to face the initial onslaught. The bridge battle, even if lost, will be a way to defang the horde's largest armies. Keep an army or two (whatever you can afford) in reserve, so that you can counter attack if your forward army is defeated.

    All of this talk of Rus in high has given me a hankering to try it myself, but I won't steal your thunder. (That is, I'll let you make a full report of your endeavour before I try anything myself.) Keep us updated, and good luck!
    Last edited by Cyprian2; 08-04-2013 at 17:45.

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    Member Member LordK9's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    RE: "war of attrition" - Yea; a bunch of relatively cheap defenders (archers, feudal sergeants, and some light or medium cavalry to take out enemy missile troops once the heavy Mongol cav is committed and fighting from the woods really nails the only good troops (the heavy cav) that the Mongols have and they usually can't seem to rebuild them. I've also had success at destroying every building in the provinces and falling back.

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    Member Member Gilrandir's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    Quote Originally Posted by drone View Post
    In VI, both Muscovy and Novgorod have Citadels, complete with Town Militias, Bowyers Workshops, Horse Breeder Guilds and Armourers Guilds. Kiev has a Fort, Port, Town Watch, and Horse Farmer. Pereyaslavl only has an Inn. So you can start getting Halberdiers right away, and I would suggest going to Bowyers Guilds in either Muscovy or Novgorod to get Arbalests.
    That is exceptionally good news. It will spare me much time and money so that I can start some shipborne trade from Novgorod and probably Kiev.

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    Member Member Gilrandir's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    Quote Originally Posted by Cyprian2 View Post
    Good points, Gilrandir. I should have mentioned that my "epic" siege of Khazar was fought as the Byzantines, having migrated to that area after many years of empire building. I completely forgot that the PoN are not available in Early. I guess I've been spoiled by too many mods!

    I think a war of attrition is the way to go with the Horde. Keeping your garrisons down in the emergent provinces is definitely a good idea. The nice thing about a citadel is that even a small garrison can stall (and do great damage to) an advancing host. You might also consider letting said provinces rebel after stripping them of military buildings (no armourer, obviously), which will prevent the horde from teching up too soon, and give you that much more time to create a bottle-neck in Kiev in which to face the initial onslaught. The bridge battle, even if lost, will be a way to defang the horde's largest armies. Keep an army or two (whatever you can afford) in reserve, so that you can counter attack if your forward army is defeated.

    All of this talk of Rus in high has given me a hankering to try it myself, but I won't steal your thunder. (That is, I'll let you make a full report of your endeavour before I try anything myself.) Keep us updated, and good luck!
    I don't think it will be attrition - a couple of decisive battles and the Horde is subdued.
    As for the report I will provide it and hopefully it will inflame you with even a greater desire to unsheath your sword.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    so as I guess u start the game. Could u share images. I miss the game.

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    Member Member Gilrandir's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    Quote Originally Posted by ferdi View Post
    so as I guess u start the game. Could u share images. I miss the game.
    The pre-Horde situation. Generally, I'm satisfied with the progress. But the financial situation is far from satisfactory. Still, I hope to meet the Horde making the best of what I have so far.Click image for larger version. 

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    Member Member Gilrandir's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    Well, it turned out an attrition war, after all. It's hard but I'm weathering it. The Mongols didn't attack Kiev but Chernigov instead. I lost the two-bridge battle (they even sent 2 units of Golden Horde warriors across the other bridge but I destroyed them; still the attacking forces were too numerous for my slim garrison). Then they stormed the castle and - a civil war!!! The ringleader was a prince with loyalty 5, command 7 and the picked troops including mercenary italian infantry, billmen and longbows. Thus I lost Kiev but managed to supress other nests of rebels. Then the attrition proper started. Now, as you can see, the Horde is limited to Kiev and Crimea. I have a chain of ships reaching from Novgorod to Portugal and hopes that other factions won't attack me while I'm dealing with the nomads.

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    Last edited by Gilrandir; 08-07-2013 at 16:39.

  18. #18

    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    Nice update, Gilrandir. Yes, civil war often happens at the worst possible moment, but fighting it successfully is a great way to build a stronger, loyaler kingdom. Good job sticking it out! Seems like you're now back in the saddle and ready to pay the horde back with interest!

  19. #19
    Needs more flowers Moderator drone's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    Well done! What kind of army composition did you have by 1231?
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    Member Member Gilrandir's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    Quote Originally Posted by drone View Post
    Well done! What kind of army composition did you have by 1231?
    It was mostly armored spearmen, arbs, halbs and boyars. Through the Kiev inn I hired 3 italian infantries, 2 billmen, 2 longbows, but because of the civil war never had a chance to use most of them. To think that they've been eating a lion's share of my budget!
    As for troops location, I kept a whole stack in Kiev (which eventually rebelled) and Lithuania (to forestall any movement from the Polish), half a stack in Chernigov, Ryazan and Muscovy.
    Boyars are just great! I attacked Volgo-Bulgaria with quite a small army (6 or 7 units, one of them - the monarch's boyars) and the Mongols brought in reinforcements from Khazar - so the odds were 1 to 3 not in my favor. But Boyars tore everyone to peaces like there's no tomorrow!!! I have this battle saved to enjoy it in a more peaceful moment.
    And one more thing: Ryazan has a river border with Khazar only - the frontier with Volgo-Bulgaria is wide open.
    Last edited by Gilrandir; 08-10-2013 at 13:10.

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    Member Member Gilrandir's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    Quote Originally Posted by pammibai View Post
    With Gold (VI), what is the variance og Mongol start point? When I played the Turks on "Early", they totally surprised me by starting in Armenia.
    They seem to have no limitations on the eastern fronties of the map, but the likelihood is that you will see them in Khazar, Volgo-Bulgaria, Georgia and/or Armenia.

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    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    Up to that point, I'd never seen them start other then Khazar and Volga-Bulgaria.

  23. #23

    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    Quote Originally Posted by Gilrandir View Post
    It was mostly armored spearmen, arbs, halbs and boyars. Through the Kiev inn I hired 3 italian infantries, 2 billmen, 2 longbows, but because of the civil war never had a chance to use most of them. To think that they've been eating a lion's share of my budget!
    As for troops location, I kept a whole stack in Kiev (which eventually rebelled) and Lithuania (to forestall any movement from the Polish), half a stack in Chernigov, Ryazan and Muscovy.
    Boyars are just great! I attacked Volgo-Bulgaria with quite a small army (6 or 7 units, one of them - the monarch's boyars) and the Mongols brought in reinforcements from Khazar - so the odds were 1 to 3 not in my favor. But Boyars tore everyone to peaces like there's no tomorrow!!! I have this battle saved to enjoy it in a more peaceful moment.
    And one more thing: Ryazan has a river border with Khazar only - the frontier with Volgo-Bulgaria is wide open.
    Boyars are the cure of Mongols. civil war is the weak point but u passsed that stage now Sweden is waiting for your attack.

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    Member Member Gilrandir's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    Quote Originally Posted by ferdi View Post
    now Sweden is waiting for your attack.
    Not Sweden. I've had enough of those northern winters - I'm moving down south.
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    As you can see, I'm on the way of destroying the might of Muslem powers. Turks are terrified and avoid battles as much as possible yielding a province after a province. The eggies attacked me (probably a false feeling of solidarity with their faith brothers) but being twice beaten they suffer now from civil war and a German crusade aimed at Antioch is waiting for my permission in Bulgaria (I think I'm gonna let it through). The garrison in Syria will surrender next year - no one is likely to deliver them (in vain do they scan the horizon from the lofty battlement hoping to see the dust of their cavalry coming to rescue).
    There are other interesting developments of the campaign: I have never seen HRE grow so powerful - usually they crumble under a couple of heavy blows from their eager neighbors. But this time they stand tall and managed to capture almost all French domains and are now competeing with the Sicilians for ex-Italian provinces (Genoa and the like). Being evicted from both Europe and Outremer the French rooted in North Africa (evidently captured during crusade(s)) and are now a totally African nation (plus Granada).
    I don't expect any trouble (except for an occasional crusade) from catholic factions unless I capture some holy places in Levant or attack any of them (the Polish, most likely). Then the beehive will be stirred to stinging. But now I'm thiking rich Middle East.
    Last edited by Gilrandir; 08-16-2013 at 13:10.

  25. #25

    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    Epic journey so far :)
    Thank you for sharing

    May peace be upon you in the Middle East
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  26. #26
    Needs more flowers Moderator drone's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    Quote Originally Posted by Gilrandir View Post
    There are other interesting developments of the campaign: I have never seen HRE grow so powerful - usually they crumble under a couple of heavy blows from their eager neighbors. But this time they stand tall and managed to capture almost all French domains and are now competeing with the Sicilians for ex-Italian provinces (Genoa and the like). Being evicted from both Europe and Outremer the French rooted in North Africa (evidently captured during crusade(s)) and are now a totally African nation (plus Granada).
    Am I mistaken, or have the Danes actually done something?
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    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    I guess Danes got Danmark-Pomerenia-Livonia and Findland. Sweeden and Norway are empty. they make less troble more money so I always pass the BAltıc first then enter the Anatolia.
    How is your position in Balkans. Now İstanbul(where I live) will be your weak point. Be careful about Hungarians. They always dream on Constantinople :)
    Last edited by ferdi; 08-16-2013 at 17:38.

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    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    In my last two games, the Danes took Britain and Ireland, parts of Spain, and most of the Atlantic coast. In the game I'm in now, they took the Balkans and a good part of west Asia as well. I must be hallucinating!

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    Member Member Gilrandir's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    Quote Originally Posted by ferdi View Post
    I guess Danes got Danmark-Pomerenia-Livonia and Findland. Sweeden and Norway are empty.
    It seems you have been watching my game over my shoulder. It happened exactly as you described. I can't help but wonder at Danes who never pay attention to iron-rich Sweden and go for a more distant and poor Finland.
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    Danes brought down the English, though inadvertently. As the Danish king took his permanent abode in Livonia his subjects in Denmark were far from happy which resulted in some rebellions. On one occasion rebels captured Denmark and the English jumped at the opportunity and invaded it. But they were poorly informed as the Danes returned with a vengeance the same turn. So the English were embroiled into a war which (I don't doubt) they didn't intend. The Danes (as well as rebels) were worsted, then besieged in the castle and there their king and his only heir were starved to death. So the Danes are no more and this act of violence caused a huge upheaval in the catholic world. The English were excommed. In vain did the English ambassadors at all European courts try to persuade the powers that be that it was an accident and they are ready to make amends. The Aragonese attacked them and captured Toulouse, the Spanish started a war and captured Aquitaine (and Anjou, I believe) plus they sent a crusade to Wessex which rebelled the turn before the crusaders arrived (I would like to see that three-sided battle between rebels, the English and the crusaders). So the English are on the verge of a collapse begging the Pope to lift the excom.
    Meanwhile in the east I captured now-rebel Finland, bribed Livonia and moved in against the Polish and in the south I captured Edessa and Antioch from the Eggies. So the catholic nations got vexed and HRE (as no doubt the most powerful of them) declared a crusade. I still can't see it and don't know its objective, but I invaded Tripoli which had been captured by a German crusade. That's how the things stand at the moment.
    Last edited by Gilrandir; 08-18-2013 at 05:43.

  30. #30

    Default Re: Rus in high: strategy and tactics

    so after your words and images I have to play the game. .
    thnx for sharing.
    After English victory Spanish will be a trouble. They start with admiral attack in Gibraltar.
    About Danes, I don't understand why they dont take Sweden & Norway. When I play with them I start the game with conwuering these two provices then go on Pomereria or somewhere else hold by rebels. But I see Danes in dominance too many times.
    After Mongol's deletions u become superior. Now your back is steady so western Catholic world is anxious.

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