View Full Version : Killing WarWagons
Easier said than done. All my armies (coming soon) are without art and el. so no quick kills. According to my understanding of the rules, only recoiling elements are destroyed if flanked. Since wwg does not recoil, the only option left is to double his throw. given a +4+4 combat factor, this is not easy to achieve. consider a double ranked pikes with +6, there is only a 6 out of 36 chance of doubling if they can get close at all. to exacerbate the situation, i have no pk nor bd against 4 hussite wwg. decent overlaps can be difficult to achieve with other elements supporting the wwg. it is easy to kill four other element types but where is the fun in that.
12-03-2003, 04:14 AM
Originally posted by kjng:
All my armies (coming soon) are without art and el. so no quick kills. War Wagons in 2.1 are not +4/+4, they are +3/+4. This makes it possible to use spear and double-ranked warband to kill them (although not quickly).
What armies are you using?
The best way to fight warwagons with a light army is maneuver -- in other words, don't fight the warwagons. Lining up opposite them and standing there and taking fire is what your ENEMY wants, not what you want. Warwagons suck in terrain, and they are not mobile in any sense -- use their pipdrain and immobility to pull your enemy army like taffy first one way, then another, until he is all spread out; at that point he will usually have abandoned his +1-pip-to-move war wagons somewhere and you can attack whatever he's got left.
Note also that foot (other than psiloi) cannot push warwagons back and don't recoil through them -- this means you can use his own warwagons as impassible terrain and squish his troops against them, where a recoil will kill them. This is usually best accomplished after the taffypull described above, or by flanking his main force (forcing him to guard his flank with non-warwagons, which are then squished eventually against the warwagon flanks).
+3/+4 Hah! missed that. yet to finish my cut and paste.
i WILL be using warring states qin and ayyubid egyptian. i am concentrating on qin first(easier to paint, i guess...) to counter this guys hussites (he humbly calls himself 'eternal champion' or something like that in this forum).
as you can see, i have no bd nor sp. will have to depend on wb.
12-03-2003, 05:31 AM
KJ, CEternal tends to play strong armies only!! Just wait for my Aztecs to meet his Malays. he he
Any news from Dave about when your armies will arrive?? Are you still giving John the Germans?
Originally posted by S.Kirby:
KJ, CEternal tends to play strong armies only!! Just wait for my Aztecs to meet his Malays. he hewhen ceternal orders in jan, i am thinking of getting a early libyan (d) army. let him try to kill my psilois ha. it would also be an interesting matchup with dave's spartans and sea peoples.
Any news from Dave about when your armies will arrive?? Are you still giving John the Germans? essex messed up the order. they got it late and only sent it late last week. latest eta next week (cross fingers). Yes, i will forfeit medieval germans to john. medieval armies are difficult to paint.
12-03-2003, 06:11 AM
medieval armies are difficult to paint. ???? What's so difficult? Armour? Standards?
There are plenty of standards you can download and print out.
[ December 03, 2003, 03:11: Message edited by: S.Kirby ]
12-03-2003, 12:33 PM
when ceternal orders in jan, i am thinking of getting a early libyan (d) army. let him try to kill my psilois ha. I tried this matchup when the 2.1 rules came out - the psiloi won after about two hours of die rolling. Once they get into contact they cannot be killed, you just start to surround the wagons and kill them off eventually. Also if you get to lay terrain they can't even deploy if you max it out.
Paul A. Hannah
08-14-2005, 01:04 AM
I was flipping thru the army-lists recently (like, who doesn't, right?). Hussites caught my eye and got me to wondering what a Hussite v. Hussite game (in 15mm on standard-sized boards) would be like?
Anyone here gamed this in DBA 2.2? I'm sure it probably produces more than its share of amusing situations. Off-hand, I would think the goal, early in the game, would be to eliminate the other side's Art.
08-14-2005, 05:56 PM
I may be a good soldier, but I am an indifferent table-top general most days. I used to match up my Later Poles against a friend's Hussite army and just get waxed. So I refused to play them. How's that for eliminating a threat? Now I have a war wagon for them, so that should even it up a bit. Thinking about it, perhpas I should take the advice of DKuijt to heart and use those Cav of mine. Or, on the other hand, am I still out of luck because I have an army that is predominately mounted, with only one element of bows and one of blades to actually deal wth the enemy WWg?
Prokop the Bald
08-15-2005, 11:58 AM
Hey Jim remember when you defeated my Later Hungarians by pushing Scibor, the Grand Chancellor, back into a warwagon?
08-15-2005, 03:28 PM
Now that you mention it...
No. Just barely.
But I was thinking that maybe we could try fighting the Hussites again.
On the other hand, taking DK's points, wouldn't the competent general eploying WWgs avoid the taffy-pull?
How about terrain? Clogging up the battle field would hinder the Poles as much as help them. I really think that the WWg rules aren't right. They imply that in a single turn, you can move your wagons and then deploy them into the wagonburg. I really think that once you deploy those wagons (and get those almost insurmountable combat factors,) they are set. I realize that there is that one battle (name escapes me) that they rolled them down the hill for a win, but in that case perhaps they acted more like chariots.
Would really like to hear from people on this. Although I admit I haven't displayed the skill necessary to deal with 5 WWgs and an Arty element with one WWg, one Bw, one Bd, one Lh, 4Cv and 4 Kn.
[ August 15, 2005, 12:29: Message edited by: Jim Rapczynski ]
08-15-2005, 04:04 PM
Remember that it takes 2PIPs to move a WWg. One to move/one to deploy, perhaps. Their factors are only 3/4. So fight infantry no better than Aux or Wb. Better against mounted, like Bows or Knights. So they might be like rocks but still in a rock-paper-scissors game.
Prokop the Bald
08-15-2005, 05:29 PM
I have to admit that the reason I bought the Hussites to begin with was to smack the Poles. From looking at the list of enemies they seemed to be the ones that would give them the most trouble.
Having read a lot more about the Hussites my appreciation for them has grown. I rarely use the army though. I don't think the rules work particularly well for warwagons. Too bad, because some really cool armies have them! I agree with the comment about being able to redeploy the wagonburg too easily. I think that once you set up your position it would be really hard to move everything in the face of the enemy. I know of one battle early on when Jan Zizka loaded up wagons with rocks and sent them crashing down a hill. I have also seen references to the Hussites actually encircling their opponents with offensive columns of wagons. I can't see that happening unless their poor opponent kept rolling a one for pips. Take out one horse and the wagon is diabled, I just can't see the Hussites roaring around the field. Maybe warwagons can be in 2 different states, mobile or deployed. If deployed, the close combat factor should go up. As the rules stand now blades attacking warwagons have a factor of 5 and blades defending warwagons have a factor of 3 (if you consider tough infantry armed with halberds and flails worthy of being termed blades. If you want to redeploy a laager, possibly a 6 on the pip die should be required.
As far as fighting them, an army with artillery would be a good start. Maybe French Ordonnance with two elements! Joan Of Arc did write a letter to the Hussites telling them they better knock off their church burning or else....but I guess she was burned when the French were still medieval and had not advanced to the ordonnance period.....elephants also have a quickkill against warwagons but I would imagine with the Hussites own artilley and all those warwagons blasting away you would have to get really lucky for your heffalumps to smash the wagons to kindling. Perhaps one of the best ways to deal with the warwagons is to ignore them and go after the other elements in the army- if you are fighting with a historical opponent you should have a lot of knights to try to run over the Hussite blades with. And there are no pesky psiloi to give the blades rear support. If you are lucky enough to get to set the terrain up, use as much junk as possible. Warwagons can't go into bad going at all. Neither can the artillery. That is half the army. If you put woods or steep hills in the middle of all 4 edges you should be able to get the Hussites deployes on both sides of an obstacle, and increase their pip problems. Those 80 mm deep stands take up a bunch of room in your deployment area. Any army with a lot of heavy foot should be able to slug it out with the Hussites. Just watch out if Zizka is on his horse, even a half-blind general will have his quickkill against foot. Pin them frontally and then use whatever mobile forces you have to envelop a flank and roll them up. Don't try to pincushion the warwagons with archers, they will be badly outshot and die. I guess one thing to remember is that the Hussites were never really defeated except by themselves, after Zizka died and they broke up into factions. The radical faction was defeated by the moderates. If there are any history sudents out there, maybe a thesis on the difference in the effectiveness of warwagons in the Hussite Wars versus the German Peasant Revolt would be illuminating.
Just some random, rambling thoughts on a very interesting army. By the way, there was an article on them in Military History about a year ago. Osprey has a book out too. Frankly nothing I have read leads me to believe anyone really understands how warwagons worked.
08-15-2005, 10:10 PM
Originally posted by Prokop the Bald:
Take out one horse and the wagon is diabled, I just can't see the Hussites roaring around the field.
This is true, but in our games we are not representing one WWg, we have to imagine that there is a trail of broken and disabled wagons in the wake of the advancing WWg element, as with any other troop type.
Some time ago (the early 80s I think) Wargaming stepped away from record keeping and individual casualty removal. I don't think anyone out there thinks it was a retrograde step. The effect is that a unit/element either plugs a gap of a certain size or is not there at all. There is no more dwindling of the heroic reargaurd. But on the other hand our gaming is much easier, with a whole lot less math.
Originally posted by Prokop the Bald:
Frankly nothing I have read leads me to believe anyone really understands how warwagons worked. All we can gather from reading about the Hussites is that they did work, the Hussites saw off all of their historical opponents, and their immediate neighbours (Poles, Germans, Hungarians) adopted the WWg in response.
I agree that the WWg rules don't work particularly well, but given their scarcity in army lists and the particular success of the most WWg heavy army historically I'm not sure why there is an argument to weaken them just because they kick the butts of non-historical opponents.
Just a note to the Fanatici. I don't own or use a Hussite army either in freindly games or in tournaments. I have three armies with WWg (Anglo Norman, Post Mongol Russian and Later Hungarian). The latter two are used in campaign sets - the former is for a campaign set I'm working on. I will admit that some friends have borrowed the A/N from me for some of the early Kriegspieler tournaments.
My favourite army is the Sung Chinese, which fears no WWg.
[ August 16, 2005, 00:33: Message edited by: Macbeth ]
Prokop the Bald
08-16-2005, 03:10 AM
Good points Macbeth.
I don't think warwagons should have their combat factors reduced. I think they should be increased, back to 4 vs all as per DBA 2.1 or even back to 5 versus mounted and 4 versus foot per DBA 1.1......Ah, that was back in the days when you could tell exactly what an element was just from ther number of figures on the stand (with the exception of warband and auxilia).
I love DBA but I do resent the influence over it wielded by DBM.
08-16-2005, 03:32 AM
You get no argument from me Prokop. I'd also like to see the Art elements get back their +4 in combat (but that is just Sung Chinese bias).
I specifically echo your last sentiment, this forum is peppered with my rants on the subject.
I think there is an earlier thread on WWg where the issue of moving and fighting was discussed. I mentioned there that a DBA battle commences when the two sides are more than 1km apart, and so we can expect that it includes part of the time that the Wagons are moving into the most advantageous position.
08-16-2005, 11:25 AM
As I see it, one major problem with representing WWg is that they focus attention on something that DBA doesn't really represent well at all -- the point where strategic maneuver ends and tactical battles begin.
DBA represents a tactical battle. Every five or six months somebody on this forum posts arguing that the tactical aggressor should be required to attack if the defender doesn't come out of his terrain (corner, whatever). That doesn't work (don't start talking about it -- see past posts if you haven't heard this debate before) but it does point out that DBA does not represent the maneuvering to "force" a battle. In the real world there were times and places when one side managed to put the other side in a position where they HAD to fight. Where withdrawing without a battle would have been bad -- often as bad as a defeat. Or even where it was impossible for one side to retreat (in a strategic sense).
And many of the Hussite battles were exactly that. The anti-Hussite forces in the first couple of battles felt that they could not retreat from peasants etc. without great loss of prestige/whatever. Since they were trying to scotch a grass-roots peasant-revolt movement, they were probably right -- they needed to re-establish their authority immediately, and even a few months more allowed the followers of Hus to solidify their support. Even worse, after the first few battles the Hussites had a reputation so fierce that in later battles the major concern of the German forces seemed to be trying to keep their forces together at all to face the Hussites -- if they retreated without a battle, their forces would be decimated by desertion and demoralization.
So the Hussites seemed to have a significant ability to put their foes in a position where they HAD to attack -- exactly what you want if you are running a peasant rebellion with essentially no mobile forces, based around a wagonburg fortress.
Anyway, my point is that the ability to put foes in a position where they MUST attack is not represented at all by DBA. It happens before the DBA mapboard is even put out, and includes many factors (scouting, generalship, supply, knowledge of terrain, social factors in both armies, who is Consul on a given day, iconoclasm) that will never be represented in a tactical wargame.
08-16-2005, 03:01 PM
Originally posted by David Kuijt:
Anyway, my point is that the ability to put foes in a position where they MUST attack is not represented at all by DBA. It happens before the DBA mapboard is even put out, and includes many factors (scouting, generalship, supply, knowledge of terrain, social factors in both armies, who is Consul on a given day, iconoclasm) that will never be represented in a tactical wargame. And that's were campaigning is great, and DBA, by its simplicity, is the perfect tactical rule for a campaign.
(appart from the fact that the campaign rules included in the DBA rulebook may be unsuffisant) But gives yourself a campaign rules were the Hussites have low ressources, but nothing to lose, and the germans have many ressources, but much to loose, and that would certainly be a great game.
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