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"Company level rules for ECW" Topic

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882 hits since 29 Jun 2017
©1994-2018 Bill Armintrout
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Private Matter29 Jun 2017 5:32 a.m. PST

Let me begin by saying that I am a fan of Pikeman's Lament as fun skirmish game. However, there is one minor thing that I would like to improve upon: The ability of an officer to form units into formations and have them act together. One of the things I like about Sharp Practice is the ability of a leader to form his units/groups into formations and command them as one. This is missing from Pikeman's Lament and I wanted to know if there is a set of rules that bridges this gap before I continue with my tweaking. I am seeking a set of rules that lets each player field and command a full company on a 1:1 figure ratio including the ability to form formations, etc.

I'm habitually tweak rules that I like, and Pikeman's Lament is no different. We've already play tested my tweaks for mounted and dismounted Dragoons and I've been scribbling down some ideas for formations. However, if there is something else out there already, I'd like to look at that as well. So any recommendations are appreciated.

Thomas O29 Jun 2017 6:31 a.m. PST

Have you did anything for combining muskets and pikes into one unit? I have the rules and have been getting miniatures painted up, but would like the muskets to be able to combine with pikes, especially form cavalry charges.

Sorry didn't really answer your question,

Private Matter29 Jun 2017 6:49 a.m. PST

The rules don't allow you to combine troop types in a unit. In my "scribbles" last night I tried to draft rules for units with a special ability I'm calling "able to form." Here are my notes (please keep in mind these are extremely rough and I have not correct spelling or readability):

For each rank level an officer can combine 2 infantry units or cavalry units with the Able to Form special ability into one unit into one of three formations: Line, Column or Hedgehog (infantry only). All units must be within 12" of officer's unit at time of order to form. Each unit must activate as normal to join the formation. Units outside of movement range will move towards the formation but will not join the formation until the following turn provided they activate and the formation hasn't moved. No unit in a formation can shot on the same turn the formation is formed. Once in formation activate, move, and shoot as one. Formations only move at pace of the slowest unit or to the limit of any remaining movement of a going unit.
The formation Moves, Shoots, and Attacks at 6+. Pike units in formation are considered to be in Close Order automatically.
In line formations can only shot directly to the front of the line. Firing from each unit in the formation is conducted separately. Line & hedgehog formation can fire up to 2 ranks deep of units but all units can only fire directly to their front.
Line formations can only move directly to their front. The can wheel, pivot or angle (up to 45 degrees) but no figure can move more than the slowest unit in the formation. Column formations can also only move to their direct front and no further than the slowest unit in the formation.
Any formation can change into another type of formation as their movement for the activation but no further movement is permitted. No firing is permitted on any activation in which a formation changes or forms its formation. Adding units to a formation is considered a change of formation.
Column formations on roads get an extra 50% movement rate. Units in column cannot shoot. Hedgehog formations are stationary only
Causalities by enemy fire is taken first by units in the formation closest to the enemy firing. Morale tests continue to be conducted by unit.
If a unit in the formation retreats or routes the formation is broken. Melee automatically breaks any formation. Once a unit moves into contact with an enemy the formation is broken and melee is conducted for each individual unit that has contacted an enemy unit.
Only like types of cavalry (i.e., trotters or gallopers) can be formed together.
If any unit in a formation has wild charge then it must still test for wild charge even if in formation. If at any time a unit conducts a wild charge the formation is automatically broken and all units in the formation must test for wild charge as if they have the wild charge special rule with +2 to the dice roll. If no units conduct a wild charge then wild charge tests are not required for units in the formation that do not have the Wild charge special rule. If more than one unit in a formation has the wild charge special rule then the player can still choose the order in which the tests are conducted. Any unit that passes its Wild Charge test and does not conduct a charge does not have to recheck if another unit in the formation fails its wild charge test later in the same turn.

Keep in mind these were written last night while laying in bed beginning to doze. I blame this whole thought process of wanting company level formations on Michael Arnold's Civil War Chronicles books which I have recently read.

Any thoughts on rule recommendations or even comments on my house rules for Pikeman's Lament are appreciated.

boy wundyr x Inactive Member29 Jun 2017 7:11 a.m. PST

There's a Sharp Practice 2 variant for the ECW, I think it's either in the Yahoo group's files or the TFL forum.

One thing I'm look at too for Pikeman's Lament is to upscale it by using smaller figures and instead of 12 figures, using 12x6 figures (probably on one base, but could be 12 bases of 6 for simpler casualty marking).

I don't have the Arnold novels (yet) but do have the Nicholas Carter ones, so I know what you mean.

Wilf1235829 Jun 2017 8:42 a.m. PST

Perhaps try Very Civile Actions from The Perfect Captain?

Timmo uk29 Jun 2017 8:59 a.m. PST

I don't have a copy but I think 'File Leader' are/were a company level set of ECW rules. I think they were written by Pete Berry and they may still be available from Caliver Books.

4D Jones29 Jun 2017 9:12 a.m. PST

'Witchfinder General'. It has a supernatural dimension, but if you discard that, it is an excellent set of ECW skirmish rules, with rules for 'loose formations' combining pike & shot.

Shagnasty Supporting Member of TMP29 Jun 2017 9:28 a.m. PST

Once Upon a Time In the West Country might serve.

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