Skirmishers-vs.-Calvary

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job
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Skirmishers-vs.-Calvary

Post by job » Sun Jan 26, 2014 5:04 am

I'm writing about this as a suggestion. I think there is quiet a bit of a discussion on the Warlord forums and across historical sites about whether skirmishers could survive independently a calvary charge. Some people point out skirmishers in some cases could react incredibly fast and successfully form a square. (There's one anecdotal sentence of Prussian jagers forming a square.) There's also British light infantry manuals (from the post-Napoleonic period) saying skirmishers were to form "hedgehogs". On the other hand, the very same document suggests throwing themselves on the ground and feigning death in order to be ignored. This seems to hardly bode well for keeping the integrity of a unit!

It seems to me that skirmishers generally avoided being deployed in a situation where they could be caught in the open. Usually units fought as part of the line, so they could take cover in the line, or were in terrain or around terrain that made it difficult for horsemen to ride them down. Apparently the war in Spain saw large use of skirmishers in independent formations by all sides, but it might be also noted that Spain was also rocky, mountainous terrain that suited that form of warfare.

In BP, the rules allow for skirmishers to form square like infantry in line formation. They also have no flank, so they always can form square as a reaction. (Line infantry can't react when charged to the flank or rear.) Essentially, skirmishers are less pervious to a calvary charge than their line comrades, which seems a bit of an incongruity.

My suggestion is this, hopefully, you agree it is simple and common sense:
Skirmishers, charged by calvary within one move without any hinderance or terrain feature between them, can not form square.

The idea is to just eliminate the egregious use of skirmishers, forming skirmisher order in plain view of calvary. If you have a fence between you and your opponent, hedge or some rock or a difficult slope, I think your skirmishers could form square. But if you are deploying masses of unsupported skirmishers on open ground within hollering range of calvary, I think this is a bit out of taste and the spirit of BP. I think your toy soldiers, in this case, would be asking for a taste of sabering. :D

Anyway, just an idea. What do you guys think?
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Re: Skirmishers-vs.-Calvary

Post by Primarch » Sun Jan 26, 2014 9:46 am

That sounds like something we can try out, definitely.
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Re: Skirmishers-vs.-Calvary

Post by ashmie » Sun Jan 26, 2014 9:53 am

Sure, sounds fair. Let's see if you can mop up my skirmish unit this time. :)
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