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"TSATF - Your preference for unit sizes?" Topic

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885 hits since 5 Apr 2017
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Liliburlero Supporting Member of TMP05 Apr 2017 7:24 a.m. PST

My sister and I are getting Dad's troops and game table ready for action. We're still undecided on NWF or African Exploration, and as we were putting some troops on the table, our discussion turned to preferred unit sizes in TSATF games. Dad's standard (and preference) was 20-man units but I know many of you use 10- or 8-man configurations. My question: do you have a preference? Or do you game with different unit sizes in various games? Just asking……

Doc Ord Inactive Member05 Apr 2017 7:43 a.m. PST

I like 20 but small sizes work and then you can field more units. I have a 12 man unit of the 78th for the Mutiny.

VCarter Supporting Member of TMP05 Apr 2017 8:13 a.m. PST

20 man foot units.

6 or 12 cavalry (with the 6 man sub unit usually grouped in pairs (12).

6 or 20 man mounted infantry.

Winston Smith Supporting Member of TMP05 Apr 2017 8:28 a.m. PST

From my reply in your Yahoo group:

"My ongoing project is "Flames of Liberty", my American Revolution adaptation of TSATF.
AWI is a bit unlike standard Colonial in that the unit sizes are extremely varied. Look at any gaming scenario for Guilford Courthouse for one thing.
Also, unique troop types are sold as bags or blisters of 6 infantry or 3 cavalry. (So are Perry Sudan for that matter.)
So, if I do Camden with Perry Volunteers of Ireland figures, I can have, using complete packs, 12, 18 or a 24 figure unit. I'm not buying 4 packs and NOT using 4 figures.
I have a bag of 15 Old Glory jaegers. Sometimes I field them as units of 9 and 6, depending on the scenario.

Years ago, I bought some bags of Foundry Afghan Regulars from you at a Historicon. There were 22 figures in one bag, 18 in another.
That's how I use them. Am I supposed to not use the 18 figure unit because I "don't have enough"? Or leave out 2 of the others? (I rate them as Egyptians, btw.)

So, I have unit sizes all over the place and it doesn't affect the game. In the long run, it only makes a few units hang around slightly longer and makes others slightly more brittle.

I've always done that, treating the 20 figure unit as a strong suggestion, but not an iron clad rule.

If the average unit size in one of my games is less than 12, I simply don't count stragglers in a charge. Imagine a bad roll with a unit starting with 6 figures….. Oh sure, it's good for a laugh, but….."

Ed Mohrmann Supporting Member of TMP05 Apr 2017 9:44 a.m. PST

I like the 20 figure size, with 6 or 12 figure cavalry

ZULUPAUL Supporting Member of TMP05 Apr 2017 10:21 a.m. PST

I use 20 fig foot units, 12 mounted. I have played with 10 man units& as Winston said just makes them "brittle".

Ragbones Supporting Member of TMP05 Apr 2017 11:26 a.m. PST

I prefer to play it as your Dad did but have enjoyed games with smaller units.

Ceterman Supporting Member of TMP05 Apr 2017 1:00 p.m. PST

I'm with ZULUPAUL on this one.

Personal logo Flashman14 Supporting Member of TMP05 Apr 2017 2:28 p.m. PST

Like John, I use what I have – some units are 24, some 18, some 20. Cav is 8-13 – again whatever I have.

Frothers Did It And Ran Away05 Apr 2017 2:29 p.m. PST

10 man units look less impressive, and can change the game somewhat by being less robust in game terms. Much as it pains me to say so I think Winston/OFM is spot on – a few figures either way isn't a problem and can actually be a game benefit to slightly vary units' staying power. Adaptability is TSATF's strength.

Winston Smith Supporting Member of TMP05 Apr 2017 3:17 p.m. PST

I also consider it a bit more "realistic" to have units of varying strength.
In "real life", if a commander had a unit of 480 East Berkshire Fusiliers, 320 Loch Ness Highlanders, and 380 North Kent Rifles, the brigade commander didn't add up the total strength and divide by three, transferring man until he got 3 average strength units.

raylev307 Apr 2017 2:48 a.m. PST

We use 10 man unites…used to use 20, but they take up a lot of space when in line. We find 10 works just as well.

SgtGuinness07 Apr 2017 6:27 a.m. PST

I'm a fond believer in the original 20/12 man sized units. That being said I've used various sized units depending on the scenario.

Smokey Roan Inactive Member11 Apr 2017 3:47 p.m. PST

22 man units. I have a officer, and a sgt for all Colonial units, and an extra flag bearer and drummer boy, but they aren't for fighting, they are just for looking at.

20 man natives, plus a leader, and a drummer or weird horn blower type or flag carrier for show.

In one one one games, I have no problem with 10 plus a leader units, sometimes. Especially Darkest Africa.

coolyork Supporting Member of TMP21 Apr 2017 1:45 p.m. PST

I use 20 man units for most troops . Standard bearers and musicians count as combatants in my units as they look ascetically pleasing but on 1:1 scale they otherwise might not exist .

ITALWARS25 Apr 2017 8:00 a.m. PST

sincerly i ' tried the 8/10 men units as suggested, among other, in Colonial Campaign books..but it really does'n work ..both in therms of game that, most important, as entertainment and visual just does'nt give the feeling of the period..that's the reason why i gamed the original scenarios (as the excellent book on Ethiopia) by reconverting the units into 20 castings units and dividing by half the number of units listed…
I strongly suggest you to stick to 20/12 castings units as per original rules..

hunter4a09 May 2017 11:32 a.m. PST

Traditional TSATF for me but experimenting with small unit actions now. Went with 10 Man Imperial units and 12 man Dervish. Seems to work out great for street fight scenario with unit modifications.

Smokey Roan Inactive Member09 May 2017 12:58 p.m. PST

10 man infantry units work great, for more crowded scenarios.

Larry invented the 10 man unit for Darkest Africa. And it works GREAT! (Plus you can have more units, and more diversity).

My Boxer Rebellion siege project, I'm building now? You can use standard units, but if you take the Legation/Garrison fort I built as the centerpiece and focus on a small siege of a small garrison (22inch by 24 inch walled complex), you can use 20 man units, OR 4 five man units and a few civilian units, against 8 20 man Boxer/Chinese attackers. 5 man units, each defending a side of the squared compound, with 2 20 man Chinese attackers, gives you a 50-50 battle.

@3 moves for the attackers to get to the walls and buildings.

Troops defending buildings or on the walls get a +1 or +2 melee advantage (some sides are damaged, low walls, some sides are scale 10 feet high) Five defenders on a wall with a +1 or +2, against a 20 man attacking unit is still a slight edge for the defenders.

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