Artillery

Share some insight about your best TRIUMPH! strategy.
chris6
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Artillery

Post by chris6 » Mon Aug 03, 2020 7:51 am

Yesterday I had the first game with artillery on my side and even though the gunnies kd an opponents element i was not really happy with my playing of the guns.

I did put them in the middle of my battleline because they are obvious the slowest moving element and I wanted to make sure that my wheeling of the line isnt slowed down by guns on the flanks. But this idea cut my battleline into 2 pieces after I closed in to the oppenent and I had to use more pips for all the movement. Well, I did not want the guns in HTH combat.

Do you have any suggestions on how to use/place the artillery efficient? (I mean high rolls on shooting are an obvious tactic.. :lol: )
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David Kuijt
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Re: Artillery

Post by David Kuijt » Mon Aug 03, 2020 11:05 am

chris6 wrote:
Mon Aug 03, 2020 7:51 am
Yesterday I had the first game with artillery on my side and even though the gunnies kd an opponents element i was not really happy with my playing of the guns.

I did put them in the middle of my battleline because they are obvious the slowest moving element and I wanted to make sure that my wheeling of the line isnt slowed down by guns on the flanks. But this idea cut my battleline into 2 pieces after I closed in to the oppenent and I had to use more pips for all the movement. Well, I did not want the guns in HTH combat.

Do you have any suggestions on how to use/place the artillery efficient? (I mean high rolls on shooting are an obvious tactic.. :lol: )
As you found out, putting the artillery in the center of your line is a mostly flawed tactic. It can work -- if your opponent is slow, unimaginative, and inexperienced. Otherwise it holds you back from attacking and makes it easier for the enemy to split your army.

The trick is to find something useful for your artillery to do. That's the main path to success for all types of stands, incidentally. Bow Levy is a wonderful troop type -- but you've got to stay focused on giving them tasks that they can achieve. Same is true for Artillery.

They can be great with a bit of support, holding a refused flank against mounted. They don't have to be in the line, either -- they are always more effective off the line, angled in, with a bit of raking fire.

They can hold a patch of rough or marsh or a steep hill against an incursion of difficult-terrain troops (light foot, raiders, skirmishers, rabble). You don't (can't) stand in the difficult terrain -- but you can force the enemy to allocate a million pips to their attack by breaking up their formation and driving it back.

Those are both defensive roles. With their slow movement and extra pip requirements, it's easier to find good defensive roles for artillery than it is to use them offensively. That doesn't mean it's impossible to use them offensively, it just means it is more difficult. Offensive use of artillery requires a lot of foresight, or the ability to exert your will upon the developing battle. The critical point to make is this -- do you understand where the focus of the battle will be, four to six paired-bounds ahead? If you do, then you have a chance to use artillery offensively. Just start moving the artillery to where they will be needed, six turns ahead.

Of course it is not that simple. By the very act of moving your artillery, you are changing your choices and influencing your opponent's choices. But that's the heart of the matter -- deciding where the true center of the conflict will be, and choosing where to place your artillery so that it can participate in that future battle in a meaningful way. Then moving your artillery forward so as to occupy that position in the future.

Artillery isn't the only troop type that has this issue. Pike, Bow Levy, and War Wagons have many of the same issues. To use them effectively you must employ foresight and planning -- you have to be thinking 4-6 turns ahead, and trying to get those troops into positions that will be useful THEN, in the future, in the battle that will be happening at that point. This is a hard skill, and it takes a long time (and a lot of experience) to learn.

One constant issue with artillery is their vulnerability to, well, anything. But you can also use that as an enticement, a way to impose your will upon the battle. A glistening plum. Battles are disagreements won by resource management -- the person who uses his command points most effectively will usually win. The person who gets more of his troops into the battle (managing his army as a resource) will usually win. If you entice three or four enemy stands to try to find a way to kill an artillery with a couple of horde or bow levy for support on one flank (whether they are light foot or raiders moving through a patch of difficult terrain, or a group of mounted trying to fight through a gap), you will be using a small, slow detachment from your army to fight a larger, faster part of the enemy army, and making the enemy pay the command points (out of his limited supply) to do so. That's good generalship, and it gives you more resources (in troops and command points) elsewhere.

The hard part about Triumph is that mostly you can't win everywhere. You have to pick part of the battle as the place you want to win, and other parts of the battle as places where you want to not-lose. With their ability to enforce their will over a big shooting range, and their enticing vulnerability, artillery can be a great component of your forces in spite of their disadvantages.

But yes, they are complex.

Good luck!

David Kuijt


ps: one of my all-time favorite battles involved a Grand Triumph fight where DS and I were using Ming Chinese with their Bamboo Katyushas. A force of Knights came over a hill to charge the guns. We had Ming crossbow as Artillery escort, and they helped with disordering the final assault, but the artillery did the work breaking up the attack, making the enemy use more pips for it, and driving the devastated command of knights back over the hill with their tails between their legs after their assault failed in slaughter and chaos.
DK
chris6
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Re: Artillery

Post by chris6 » Mon Aug 03, 2020 12:36 pm

Well, thank you for a deep look not only into artillery but into basic tactics in Triumph.

My first battles were romans vs romans, romans vs celts, I had the romans and Early Germans vs Romans were I played the germans. I always hat a very simple plan and no terrain in my way. Plan was get the legions/warriors with support to the thick of the fight and crush the enemy. This worked in all battles but with the germans were i did not manage to get the quick kills.

The battle with the gun was with burgundians. The gun was not the only problem, but the mix of all the different troop typs and a wood in the middle of the map.

But I hope I can keep your hints in mind to do better tomorrow....
spenn
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Re: Artillery

Post by spenn » Mon Aug 03, 2020 7:05 pm

Great reply. Enjoyed reading it. Almost calls for a video from Rod.

Hint. Hint. Nudge. Nudge.
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Rod
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Re: Artillery

Post by Rod » Mon Aug 03, 2020 9:38 pm

Rod has been Busy with Project Lunacy.... more on that later.

But yes DK sums it up well find a place where you can win and make sure you don't lose sum place else.

Artillery can be an anchor or a battering ram depends on perspective. It is really useful for breaking up an opponent who tries to camp for example.
chris6
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Re: Artillery

Post by chris6 » Tue Aug 04, 2020 7:40 am

Projekt Lunacy.... :o .....sounds spacey....Triumph! with space marines? :lol:

I think I am trying the art in some other games maybe with the marian romans against barbarians and see what I can figure out.

Just ordered some Museum Miniatures "Z" Range Macedonians/Greeks, the pictures look fantastic on their site, that is why the late medieval will have to wait some time before they get a painting. So no Artillery there.
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Rod
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Re: Artillery

Post by Rod » Tue Aug 04, 2020 6:33 pm

I have been told I need another name code name.

Essentially project lunacy is me and a growing number of friends building classical period armies in 28mm for doing some massive battles in the future (post pandemic shutdown).

Lunacy because many of us have these armies in 15mm, so why not paint them again in glorious 28mm :)

I am thinking about opening it and inviting more people to join into this effort, and we may have at least one figure manufacturer jump in with some discount packs. I will post more on the Triumph FB page as it develops.

The time frame is roughly Marathon (earliest) through the rise or the Roman Republic. So think so Hopilites, Pike, Eastern Horse and archers (Persians), Elephants, Spanish, Gauls, Romans..... lots of figures and armies with a lot of versatility and allowing us to recreate some great classical battles by pooling resources.

We still do most of our tournament gaming in 15mm, which we all love, but when I do the GT scenarios I prefer 28s.
chris6
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Re: Artillery

Post by chris6 » Wed Aug 05, 2020 7:24 am

I would like to join in...and I invite all of you to my home and you will get beers and food! Well, if you do not mind flying to germany.... :mrgreen:

Yesterday I saw a numidian army which fits into the linacy time frame and I was impressed. Always thought Numidians were an easy to beat army but stay give the romans a tough day.
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Rod
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Re: Artillery

Post by Rod » Wed Aug 05, 2020 12:32 pm

You are most welcome to join there is nothing formal other than pick out a suitable 28mm classic army and start painting.

We currently have people painting the following armies (or in various points of completion):
Greek Hoplites
Early Achaemenid Persians
Late Achaemenid Persians
Camillian/Republican Romans
Macedonians (Alexander and successor versions)
Classical Indians
Numidians
Gauls

These figs can morph into several versions of armies throughout this period. So we hope to put on some large battles in the future and then use those same armies for other convention activities like campaigns and tournaments style events. In reality a solid block of Pike or Hoplites and you have the core of several armies in this period.

Numidians are actually a tough army, with lots of fast troops and a possibility for a few heavy foot and an elephant :)

Now I cannot say it makes good sense to plan on hauling 28mm armies across the pond, but of course you are most welcome to pick and army and hopefully someday we play in person. I am going to try to encourage people to start posting pics of the armies and progress and discuss the project on the FB page.

My hope would be that sometime in the not too distant future we start playing in person again at conventions. So it is sort of like a group project in a way since we cannot gather in groups to play and I hope give us something to look forward to when we finally can get them out and play in person.

Maybe I will do a video on the plans?
chris6
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Re: Artillery

Post by chris6 » Wed Aug 05, 2020 2:44 pm

Just ordered over 1oo Euro of Pikes and Hoplites for various armies in 15mm. After that I will think about a 28mm army, i like the 1st corps minis.

Jep, maybe someday in the future we see each other in person for a nice battle!
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