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"1642: Potential Strategies" Topic

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Personal logo Whirlwind Supporting Member of TMP28 Nov 2016 3:09 p.m. PST

What do you think the potential strategies that both sides could have adopted right at the beginning of the ECW in England?

I'm about to have a run through with the boardgame that I intend to later use as the campaign engine for a refight of the war with miniatures.

1ngram28 Nov 2016 3:14 p.m. PST

for the Royalists
1. Accept that London is untakeable/unkeepable.
2. Take Bristol and moved the capital there ASAP.

Timbo W28 Nov 2016 4:12 p.m. PST

Interesting question –

- promise Hotham and Massey the moon on a stick to join you.
- harry Essex's retreating army after Edgehill far more closely with Rupert's cavalry, perhaps they'll fall apart before making a stand at Turnham Green.
- forment discontent in London
- bring back as many of the army in Ireland (that you can trust) as soon as possible, perhaps via Chester
- be nicer to the Scots

- don't allow Essex to leave half a dozen of his infantry regiments scattered around the place in garrisons before Edgehill
- lock up Sir Faithful Fortescue
- make Waller commander in the West asap hopefully avoiding defeat in detail by Hopton and the Cornish
- put Manchester in charge of the EA earlier, or anyone with sufficient authority to get things moving, perhaps Warwick?
- teach the horse to charge!

Sobieski Inactive Member29 Nov 2016 5:07 p.m. PST

Royalists – plant agents in Hull to secure the place, and the arsenal therein, immediately to balloon goes up.

grtbrt Inactive Member06 Dec 2016 3:10 p.m. PST

Will the participants be able to influence the political decisions ?

if so :
Royalists -stay away from bringing Irish troops to England and Never trust the Scots!!!

Parliamentarians: Never trust the Scots!!

Elenderil07 Dec 2016 7:04 a.m. PST

1 – Don't impose the prayer book and Anglican services on Scotland so you don't have to fight the two Bishop's Wars. That way the Scot's will be better disposed to you.
2 – If that fails support Montrose in Scotland to keep the Covenantors tied up North of the Border.
3 – Don't throw Strafford to the Wolves. He is the best chance of a negotiated settlement in Ireland which allows English troops to be returned to England.
4 – Concentrate on securing the North and especially Cheshire as the link to the Royalist recruiting hotspots of Wales and the Welsh Borders
5 – Boot don't Spatter (to quote Blucher)

1 – Support Waller and hang onto Bristol and Gloucester to split Cornwall and the South west from the rest of the Royalist recruiting grounds.
2 – Break the Royalist heartlands in small areas without contact with each other.
3 – Form the NMA as soon as possible
4 – Maintain the Navy to blockade Royalist ports so as to reduce the flow of arms
5 – Boot don't Spatter

1ngram07 Dec 2016 9:22 a.m. PST

"Boot don't splatter" – Guderian, surely, not Blucher

Personal logo Whirlwind Supporting Member of TMP11 Dec 2016 8:24 a.m. PST

Thanks very much for all of the suggestions. The game starts after the standard has been raised and doesn't really allow either side to pursue very different political aims. I think therefore that leaves me (from the suggested strategies):

1. The "South West" strategy: prioritize the taking of Bristol and securing the SW.
2. Ignoring London
3. Be more aggressive with Prince Rupert
4. The "Northern" strategy: secure Cheshire to create a contiguous zone of Royalist control from Wales through to the North.

1. Concentrate more forces in the field armies
2. "Southwestern Strategy": support Waller as the main drive to prevent the Royalists securing Bristol and Gloucester

Other people have suggested that both sides should concentrate more on recruiting initially and avoid major battles.

Any more ideas?

hagenthedwarf Inactive Member07 Jan 2017 1:57 p.m. PST

Try and avoid hindsight. in decision making.

London is the historic capital of the country. Why should Charles not want to capture it as soon as possible and why should he expect to need a big army to do so? Parliament and the radicals make it unfriendly to the Royalists but how big an army do you need to win?

Timmo uk09 Jan 2017 12:55 p.m. PST

Can the navy be secured for either side in the game you are playing?

Personal logo Whirlwind Supporting Member of TMP09 Jan 2017 1:47 p.m. PST

No, the naval situation is a constant. It doesn't really allow for a different political strategy either. The situation is more that the standard has been raised, the war has begun, what are you going to do now?

Personal logo Whirlwind Supporting Member of TMP09 Jan 2017 1:53 p.m. PST

I played a run through of the boardgame ("The King's War" link ) before Christmas. One thing I noticed was a kind of magnetic effect for the main armies so that they kept on needing to close with each other (not necessarily to fight). For instance, Essex decides he doesn't want to march towards Shropshire to battle the King, he goes to besiege Oxford. The King then has to go the relief of Oxford. Or he ignores that and marches on London – Essex then must raise the siege and march towards the King. And so on. It was a very interesting dynamic, I genuinely felt I'd learned something!

Mac163810 Jan 2017 5:35 a.m. PST

I Play the board game "Unhappy King Charles" regularly and it brings into focus the problem both side have in running their campaigns through out the war.

I have been a wargamer for over 40 years and this one of the few game I have played that give you a feel of what a ECW and it's problems might be like.

Cailleach Inactive Member10 Jan 2017 11:36 a.m. PST

Train and maintain your army.

Train and maintain your army.

The first to have a well maintained and well trained army is in the box seat I think.

Personal logo Whirlwind Supporting Member of TMP10 Jan 2017 2:02 p.m. PST

@ Cailleach,

The problem with that strategy is:

if both sides can recruit and train at an equal rate, the side which starts in the weaker position should probably attack (because the disparity will only grow);

if one side can recruit and train at a faster rate, then the other side should probably attack (because the disparity will only grow)

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