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Thread: What's the Biggest Army You've Ever Assembled?

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    Spirit King Senior Member seireikhaan's Avatar
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    Default What's the Biggest Army You've Ever Assembled?

    This thought just struck me recently while doing a turkish campaign. What's the biggest army you've ever assembled? I built up 26 jihads for when the Mongols invaded. My borders in the north were Georgia and Constantinople. The bizzy owned all the territories bordering my provinces, and once, just to cripple their armies, I took Khazar and then pulled back to Georgia.

    It didn't occur to me until about 15 years before the mongol invasion that I could Jihad for Khazar. My original plan was for them to take Georgia and Jihad for that. I also maxed out the zeal of my provinces to 75/76%, with a few over that due to zealous governors. The crusades went from Antioch/Palestine to Syria to Armenia to Georgia to Khazar. I also threw in an 8 star general with plus 5 morale(due to traits) to lead the armies. When they arrived in Khazar, the Mongols, who oddly enough stuck to just the provinces they got in the initial invasion(Khazar and Volga Bulgaria) had all of their troop in Khazar.

    The Mongols fled from Khazar into Volga Bulgaria, completely abandoning the province. I moved all of the troops from the successful Jihads into VB to finish the mongols off. In total, I had an army of just under 46,000 troops versus the Mongols measly 12,000.

    EDIT: This was with standard unit sizes.
    Last edited by seireikhaan; 05-07-2007 at 06:03.
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    Master of useless knowledge Senior Member Kitten Shooting Champion, Eskiv Champion Ironside's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's the Biggest Army You've Ever Assembled?

    Around 100.000 on normal unit size... Needless to say, I won that battle.

    Took about the entire map to support that army though (was invading the last remaining province on the map).

    Moving all those stacks took ages.
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    Handler of candles Member Xehh II's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's the Biggest Army You've Ever Assembled?

    My armies are always very small, on normal unit size the biggest army i've ever had has only been 1,160 but that was enough to beat over 10,000 mongols.
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    Camel Lord Senior Member Capture The Flag Champion Martok's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's the Biggest Army You've Ever Assembled?

    Well I had once a Jihad army of around 36,000 men that (coincidentally enough) retook Khazar. If we're talking about the largest non-Crusade/Jihad army, however, then it's probably more in the 10,000-15,000 range. I've never really needed larger armies than that, unless it was maybe to deal with the Mongols.
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    Passionate MTW peasant Member Deus ret.'s Avatar
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    Default Re: What's the Biggest Army You've Ever Assembled?

    In one of my earlier campaigns as the Byz, I had been completely taken off guard by the Mongol invasion. When the game had subsequently crashed (which forced me to re-install everything ) I reloaded, only to witness my last working save game to be around 1198.

    Being rather annoyed at first, I decided to play at least until the arrival of the horde and to forge a nice welcome committee on the way. It took up more than the surplus I had then but I shoveled around 25,000 soldiers into Khazar to greet the Mongols. Fool that I was then....needless to say, they showed up with an unbelievably large army (don't remember the numbers anymore) and crushed my force. This at least revitalized the campaign and made me finish it, with the GH being a bitter foe to the very end....when I contented with a minor victory.

    But I never again amassed an army which was that large. What for? Smaller forces of well-chosen, elite troops serve the same purpose much better.
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    Default Re: What's the Biggest Army You've Ever Assembled?

    I generally play as Byzantium, and tend to use small, functional armies.

    In my current HRE game I´ve fielded as many as two thousand men. But most of them were trash. Still, they had their uses, if used in limited ammounts. Mainly to minimize the damage caused to your buff troops. But you have to be careful. Too many trash troops might start a general trash rout. And a general trash rout can affect decent, but not "impetuous" units.

    In general, against an eçual numbers army, I´d use them as auxiliary troops to flank when proffessionals are in the field, and as a meatshield for them when necessary (say, a Mongol Heavycav charge against your Men At Arms. Toss in the middle an urban militia unit so that the blunt charge is received by the UM and not the MAA, and afterwards proceed to surround&kill the offending Mongol unit with the remnants of your UM, and your mostly intact MAA), and in small numbers at a time (say, one third of the number of proffessionals). That way even if they rout, or are massacred, you still have plenty of spares to summon. It will still save you lives of your better soldiers, allow you to win the battle faster, and you will avoid a "mass scare" rout, which might result in humongous losses both to your trash and your "better" troops. In any event, keep them on the rear and move them foward only when necessary. That way you might prevent them withstanding battles which are not necessarily unwinable, but might result in panic.

    (for the record, I lost Novgorod against an army which I nominally would have been able to beat, if my trash infantry hadn't panicked-battling trash infantry,of all things-, and caused my M-A-A to panic in turn, which resulted in my general getting captured. Luckily I had set my MAA close enough to the border so that most of them survived.)
    Last edited by The Unknown Guy; 05-07-2007 at 12:37.
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    Default Re: What's the Biggest Army You've Ever Assembled?

    I tend to focus on minimum force necessary. Large armies are expensive and take too many mouse clicks though ironically, disbanding stuff takes even more. 2,000 decent troops with even a bump though, can basically run through any reasonable number of enemies in any mod I've played, so large armies are ungainly, expensive and micromanagement-intensive gestures.

    And let's face it, even if they were necessary, I doubt I'd have the energy to go through with such a long battle.

    In many of my games, my largest armies never see combat or in those rare instances I insist on playing Conquest, don't see combat until the end. Those are armies running 3-5 stacks whose purpose for much of the game is simply discouraging AI aggression so I can sit on a point lead.

    Sometimes, I'll pile together large armies for auto-resolve. Those tend to also run 3-5 stacks or about 2500-4000.

    Very occasionally, I run armies bigger than that. That absolute most number of troops I'd ever had to actually use was 4500 when I took some Spanish trash into Khazar to fight the horde. Armies at or above 5,000 are very rare for me. My record is under 9,000 Cumans.

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    Professional Cynic Member Innocentius's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's the Biggest Army You've Ever Assembled?

    Like many others I tend to keep my armies small and highly professional, especially since I prefer the Catholic unit roster with less mobility but more punch. A unit of Chivalric Foot Knights easily perform better than 5 units of Spearmen.
    I think my largest army would be within the range of 4500 - 5500, but I haven't used such big armies since I quit playing VI and installed XL. Of course, I once had a little fun cheating (quite a lot) as the Turks in High and ended up with an army of about 10 000, most of which was JHI
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    Default Re: What's the Biggest Army You've Ever Assembled?

    Recently, whether on Hard or Expert, I've found a lot of my games becoming slogs towards 1453 or 60% before I even get a fortress much less 5-digit armies and JHI. :(

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    Member Member Lord Cazaric's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's the Biggest Army You've Ever Assembled?

    After I destroyed the Golden Horde in 1240 as the Spanish, I went to war with the Almohads, who had taken North Africa and the Middle East back from me. So I dragged down all the armies I had in Turkey and the steppes, and marched into battle in Syria with around 40,000 soldiers.

    Understandably, the 3000 defenders fled to gather in Sinai. When I reached Sinai, I decimated the Almohad army there (40,000 vs. 9000) and quickly afterwards my massive army and a smaller one from Spain (perhaps 3000 soldiers) swept along North Africa and eliminated the Almohads completely.
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    Member Member Lord Cazaric's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's the Biggest Army You've Ever Assembled?

    Hehe shortly afterwards I invaded France and Germany. I needed to get more land to pay for the soldiers, and also to kill off some of the soldiers to make money again.

    Understandably, my treasury had been nearly ruined by my campaigns against the Golden Horde and, almost immediately afterwards, the Almohads.
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    Handler of candles Member Xehh II's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's the Biggest Army You've Ever Assembled?

    Lord Cazaric can you remember what your army was made of?
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    Ja mata, TosaInu Forum Administrator edyzmedieval's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's the Biggest Army You've Ever Assembled?

    About 25-30 full stacks of Byzantine troops combined with LOTS of mercenaries in Khazar to meet the Mongol invasion. Something like 60000 vs 15-16(!!!!) full Mongol stacks. I won the battle with HUGE casualties. Lost about 40000 people, but the Mongols fled.
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    Senior Member Senior Member naut's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's the Biggest Army You've Ever Assembled?

    42 000 Papal soldiers in the last province, Rome, against 26 000 Byz men. Took a long time to say the least.
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    Default Re: What's the Biggest Army You've Ever Assembled?

    Quote Originally Posted by Rythmic
    42 000 Papal soldiers in the last province, Rome, against 26 000 Byz men. Took a long time to say the least.
    There are some moments where you'd like to be able to save during battles so you can take a na...I can imagine that to be one of those
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    Camel Lord Senior Member Capture The Flag Champion Martok's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's the Biggest Army You've Ever Assembled?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mithrandir
    There are some moments where you'd like to be able to save during battles so you can take a na...I can imagine that to be one of those
    One of the first times I fought the Golden Horde in MTW -- in fact, I think it might have been the same battle I mentioned earlier in this thread (where I retook Khazar with my massive Jihad army) -- I literally paused the game in the middle of the battle around 3:00 a.m. & went to sleep, got up the next morning around 10:00 and finished the battle. Needless to say, the experience taught me to never play a large battle if it was after midnight.

    Unless I was really, really drunk....
    Last edited by Martok; 05-14-2007 at 23:12.
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    Member Member Lord Cazaric's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's the Biggest Army You've Ever Assembled?

    Quote Originally Posted by Xehh II
    Lord Cazaric can you remember what your army was made of?
    A large number of spear units to counter the Mongol Heavy Cavalry, a few royal knights, tons of men-at-arms, archers, woodsmen and a large number of mercenaries for quick soldiers.
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    Sir Loin of Lamb Member General Dazza's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's the Biggest Army You've Ever Assembled?

    Quote Originally Posted by Martok
    Needless to say, the experience taught me to never play a large battle if it was after midnight.
    Right there with you on that. Sometimes too you have that after-midnight agnst about whether to fight a medium sized-battle too.

    Last night at about 12.15am I played one last turn and got invaded by about 850 GH against my 600 Crusader States in the desert. It was an important battle but I thought I'd just auto-calc (and lose) and go back to the saved game before the end of turn. But I won the auto calc ! But with 280 losses against 380

    Problem now is - I don't whether to take the win or replay it. If I take the win I'll probably have to withdraw my troops and give them the province anyway...but I'm not guaranteed of a better result if a replay.....hmmmmm......

  19. #19

    Default Re: What's the Biggest Army You've Ever Assembled?

    Probably the biggest army I had was about 5000 Saxons just as I was gonna pounce on the Mercians..

    I know, not small, but I haven't played against the GH/Mongol invasions yet, since I play early eras usually

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