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"Something "like" DBA - or am I missing something??" Topic


De Bellis Antiquitatis (DBA)

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178 hits since 2 Jan 2017
©1994-2017 Bill Armintrout
Comments or corrections?

Bozkashi Jones03 Nov 2016 6:34 p.m. PST

I know it's a bit odd to come into the DBX forum and ask for recommendations for other rulesets, but believe me – I WANTED to like DBA…

Earlier this year I bought some Bacchus 6mm Wars of the Roses. Typically, they're not yet painted, but I am girding my loins to take that task on with a view to basing them up for DBA.

Now my first quandary is how to base them. I was thinking that using 15mm base sizes was the way to go, but I put some unpainted figures onto a base to judge the 'look' and it was 'okay'. Putting them on 25mm bases, however, and my what a difference! Not that many extra troops, but some space to sprinkle officers and command groups behind the longbowmen, or have a mounted general in front of the blades exhorting his men to victory.

So question 1 is: does anyone do DBA medievals or ancients using 25mm bases? And any photos if you do?? I'd dearly love some inspiration!

My second question comes from a test game this evening – using just bases with the element types scribbled on in pencil.

What surprised me was how 'gamey' it felt – particularly with regards the 'buttocks of death', as I've heard it referred to. I seemed to me that if I approach my opponent at a slight angle they are forced to turn to face (fine so far) but as the element behind is no longer facing the same direction they are destroyed on a recoil. I know hitting one's opponent from an angle other than the front should cause all sort of problems for them, but I felt that all I have to do is approach with my block of elements and at the last moment wheel to hit one corner instead of doing the natural thing and hitting their line head-on.

Have I got this wrong? Or is it really a bit 'gamey'?

So that brings me on to question 2: Are there any other rulesets out there which combine similar sized armies, bases or elements (rather than units and casualty removal) and DBA's beautiful simplicity?

Honestly; I'm not here to criticise DBA – I really did want to like it, but there just seemed to be something a little 'off' to me.

Eumelus Inactive Member03 Nov 2016 6:46 p.m. PST

You've got it very wrong. Conforming is a lot more complicated than that. In your defense, it is next to impossible to correctly learn even the rudiments of playing DBA on your own. While the rules are very good at what they do (which is not to say they are good at what their author says they are intended to do), they are also famously indecipherable, even the newest version. Fortunately, almost anywhere there are wargamers, there will be found someone who can translate Barkerese into practice.

Hafen von Schlockenberg Supporting Member of TMP03 Nov 2016 6:49 p.m. PST

1. There are apparently enough people using 25mm bases for their 6mm that Baccus offers 25mm ground-scale armies--see their website.

2. L'Art de la Guerre is popular enough that the first English edition sold out. Now into second printing. Similar to DBX basing,except heavy infantry is on double DBX depth. LADG vets can tell you more.

About time these rules got their own board,too.

Yellow Admiral Supporting Member of TMP03 Nov 2016 6:56 p.m. PST

Similarly-scaled equivalents off the top of my head:
Basic Impetus
To The Strongest
Sword & Spear

I think DBA beats them all for subtlety and flexibility (it always has been an "easy to learn, hard to master" game), but the geometry problems finally stopped me from playing it. OTOH, the geometry problems are supposed to be *much* better in v3. Which version are you playing?

- Ix

Whirlwind03 Nov 2016 6:57 p.m. PST

So question 1 is: does anyone do DBA medievals or ancients using 25mm bases? And any photos if you do?? I'd dearly love some inspiration!

Sure, I do. I'm not an amazing painter or terrain modeller, but hopefully it will show the idea

Here is Ellendun (Wessex vs Mercia): link

picture

Nechtansmere (Picts vs Anglo-Saxons): link

picture

Verneuil 1424 (French vs English – okay, I used WOTR armies): link

picture

Bozkashi Jones03 Nov 2016 7:20 p.m. PST

Woah – being a naval gamer, and therefore being a minority within a minority, I'm not used to so many responses so quickly!

Eumelus – good news indeed! I am glad to hear that I've got this wrong.

Hafen von Schlockenberg – Yep; when I bought the figures at York I was very impressed by the 25mm basing on the Bacchus stand. Having tried out the 15mm bases I think I'm going to have to suppress my inner cheapskate and go with this basing option!

lx – Fancy meeting you here! Thanks for the tips – I'm looking at reviews of Impetus (I see Basic Impetus is no longer available free). I've not heard of the others so I'll look them up.

Whirlwind – That's exactly the thing! They really do look so much better – I love the early medievals in particular – especially the way the rear ranks bunch up. Spectacular, cheers!

Nick

Personal logo Coyotepunc and Hatshepsuut Supporting Member of TMP03 Nov 2016 7:22 p.m. PST

6mm models based for 25mm DBA has always made me think of fantasy gaming… my 25mm humans against your 25mm pixies or similar. But maybe that's just me.

Bozkashi Jones03 Nov 2016 7:43 p.m. PST

Coyotepunc and Hatshepsuut – yep, just you.

;-)

lx – sorry, forgot to mention I have Version 1.1; it's almost and antique and I've had it for over 20 years without ever building an army to play with!

Personal logo Extra Crispy Sponsoring Member of TMP03 Nov 2016 7:58 p.m. PST

Mighty Armies Ancients is worth a look

Yellow Admiral Supporting Member of TMP03 Nov 2016 7:58 p.m. PST

I was an ancients gamer first. I moved to naval games to try something completely different. :-)

If you hate the Buttocks Of Death™, you're going to hate version 1.1. You need to play a lot so you can get intimately familiar with the subtleties of DBA 1.1 and then write home rules to fix it, or buy version 3.0 and use that instead.

The Barkerese in v3 is no better, but there are lots of diagrams, and the anti-Pythagorean tactics and hypermillimetrics are considerably reduced.

- Ix

Yellow Admiral Supporting Member of TMP03 Nov 2016 8:01 p.m. PST

BTW, the "large bases DBA" is a whole religion with lots of adherents, myself among them.

I personally set out to use double-size bases with 15mm miniatures (aka "Impetus style"), but 6mm troops on 25mm basing scheme is also a grand approach.

- Ix

hindsTMP Supporting Member of TMP03 Nov 2016 8:04 p.m. PST

Even with 1.1 (which is a perfectly good version), you're playing it wrong. I have been playing 3.0 lately, but I'll get out my 1.1 tomorrow, and give you a more detailed answer.

BTW, I never felt the so-called "buttocks of death" was an issue. Remember that the minis on a DBA stand are an abstraction of a much larger number of real soldiers, who would not always be facing rigidly forward. So, I just interpreted the BOD situation as the troops flowing around the flank and into the rear of the affected element. IIRC, if you let this happen, you deserve the consequences.

MH

Yellow Admiral Supporting Member of TMP03 Nov 2016 8:05 p.m. PST

And… another naval gamer joins the fray. Hey Mark!

- Ix

Ragbones Supporting Member of TMP03 Nov 2016 8:06 p.m. PST

Whirlwind, those are great looking armies. Like Bozkashi Jones said, those bases with the bunched up rear ranks are terrific.

Mako11 Supporting Member of TMP Inactive Member03 Nov 2016 10:24 p.m. PST

Maximilian is another option.

Not sure how it handles friendly recoils.

IIRC, armies are about 2X those of a regular DBA army, so still reasonable.

The rules are written in clear English, or American, as opposed to "Barkerese", which is another plus, and there are a number of armies provided in the lists for the medieval period, e.g. HYW and Wars of the Roses, IIRC.

martin goddard Sponsoring Member of TMP04 Nov 2016 2:19 a.m. PST

You might consider Peter Pig Conquerors and Kings. It needs more bases than DBA which might exclude it. The advantage of C+K is that it uses a grid of squares so there is no measuring or orientation problems. Because the squares are of 1 foot there are only a few squares to consider each turn. C+K has been popular since 1990, so have a fine heritage. Best wishes for your search!

martin

YogiBearMinis Supporting Member of TMP04 Nov 2016 3:30 a.m. PST

DBA 3.0 is far, far better on the various "geometries of death" issues that vexed some gamers.

Yesthatphil04 Nov 2016 3:31 a.m. PST

The aspects of DBA you ave issues with have largely gone from Version 3. I play V3.

ADLG is an interesting mix of other game styles with a lot of DBA and with DBA-style bases (foot 'units' are 2 deep but … ) … I find it a bit more fiddly but understand why others have taken to it.

Basic Impetus is pretty good (with 6mm figures on a 25mm base, I'd just take a base as a unit in Impetus).

But I'd be tempted to go to v3 before giving up on DBA if it is all the conforming and angling that disappoints you.

Phil

parrskool04 Nov 2016 4:28 a.m. PST

I have never understood the Overlap rule re shooting and melee. If a shooter makes an enemy stand fall back, does it then add to his neighbours shoot as an overlap vs another stand…. and ditto for melee. DBA is a minefield.

CPBelt Inactive Member04 Nov 2016 5:41 a.m. PST

I would suggest the Warmaster Ancient series but that is just me.

lkmjbc304 Nov 2016 7:08 a.m. PST

A couple of points… I am unsure what version of DBA you are playing. The current version is DBA 3.

In DBA since the original… the attacker must usually conform to the defender rather than as you have intimated. This changes in a few circumstances starting with version 2 I believe.

Version 3 features a more robust conformation that eliminates the Buttocks of Death issues in any case.

You can find some folks that do 6mm on 25mm stands. It looks wonderful.

To answer Parrskool's questions about overlap and shooting… Not sure I understand your question.

Shooters are only allowed either to shoot… or to support another element's shot in a bound (their turn). So, you can't shoot and support another shot.

Overlap in melee is a different process. The melee phase comes after shooting is finished. You can provide overlap to multiple other combats. Further… it is adjudicated at the time of the combat. Thus, you can in melee recoil your opponent and then provide overlap to additional combats.

I hope this helps.

Joe Collins

Hafen von Schlockenberg Supporting Member of TMP04 Nov 2016 8:36 a.m. PST

Hmm. . .I may be confused about the correct L'Art acronym--possibly because a friend insists on calling it "LGBT".

Yellow Admiral Supporting Member of TMP04 Nov 2016 10:32 a.m. PST

I would suggest the Warmaster Ancient series but that is just me.
Good suggestion, with one caveat – finding the rules. I see it's on Amazon in the $60 USD-$90 range, and on amazon.co.uk it starts at £35.00 GBP and goes all the way to £356.00 GBP I thought it was kinda fun, but not that fun.

- Ix

Thomas Thomas Supporting Member of TMP04 Nov 2016 10:36 a.m. PST

B. Jones:

Sorry for your rough start with DBA. By all means get a copy of DBA 3.0 it greatly reduces the geometry monkey business and limits "death by recoil". A great step forward in DBX mechanics. (Rule of thumb: moving element conforms unless a group contacts a single element in which case the single element conforms. If moving elements can't conform then non-movers conform or fight as if overlapped.)

As to the text – some people love Phil Barker's style and some loath it. We made a great effort to improve it in 3.0 but I understand those who still struggle. Everyone relies on some one teaching them the rules but this only works when you have an active teaching group in place.

I'm working on a project to fix this now. Hope to have news soon. For now just get a copy of 3.0 and see if you can work through the rules.

TomT

MichaelCollinsHimself04 Nov 2016 11:08 a.m. PST

Whirlwind,

excellent basing – it looks just right !

hindsTMP Supporting Member of TMP04 Nov 2016 11:39 a.m. PST

What surprised me was how 'gamey' it felt – particularly with regards the 'buttocks of death', as I've heard it referred to. I seemed to me that if I approach my opponent at a slight angle they are forced to turn to face (fine so far) but as the element behind is no longer facing the same direction they are destroyed on a recoil. I know hitting one's opponent from an angle other than the front should cause all sort of problems for them, but I felt that all I have to do is approach with my block of elements and at the last moment wheel to hit one corner instead of doing the natural thing and hitting their line head-on.

Have I got this wrong? Or is it really a bit 'gamey'?

IMHO, 1.1 is just as good as 3.0, since although 3.0 (and 2.x) improved some things, it worsened others. For example, in 3.0 relative to 1.1, elephants are no longer cost-effective; starting positions are too close together; movement allowances are too high; faster elements can no longer withdraw from contact with slower; etc. So if you have an opponent for 1.1 (I no longer do), and already own the rules, use them. I have also always held the opinion that Phil Barker's rules are understandable if you read them carefully, as you would a text book, rather than as you would a romance novel. (There are a few points where this is not the case, but only a few, and using common sense his intention can be inferred in these few cases).

WRT to to your question above, due to most people moving to later versions, I am a bit rusty at 1.1 now. However, looking at the rule book, you should not be able to approach your opponent "at a slight angle"due to the "ZOC" effect of the 1-base-width area in front of each element. See "TACTICAL MOVES", "No element can move across the front …". I always interpreted this as applying to any portion of the moving element's base. So it is incumbent on the moving element to have sufficient movement allowance to make legal contact, which in this case would be "both front edge and corner to corner base contact" with the opposing element; either front or flank. Now, if you make legal contact with the flank of the enemy line, their end element will have to turn to face, putting it into a bad position with respect to recoils, but IMHO this is realistic.

WRT the the so-called "buttocks of death" situation, IIRC this refers to the case where a unit moves to the rear of an enemy unit partially blocking its retreat, but the element remains out of contact and facing away. Certain literal-minded players objected to this, assuming that all of the hundreds/thousands of soldiers represented by the element would be rigidly facing forward as it they were statues, thus putting their backs/buttocks to the enemy formation. As stated in my previous post, the easy mental work-around to this is to consider that the soldiers are not statues, and although the element's front is generally as depicted by the minis, it is quite possible for the actual soldiers it represents to face and act in other directions in certain circumstances. That this is the author's intention is suggested by the way single element moves can be in any direction, which does not imply that ancient cavalry rode their horses sideways or in reverse. Works for me, anyway.

Mark H.

Hafen von Schlockenberg Supporting Member of TMP04 Nov 2016 12:59 p.m. PST

Yellow Admiral--I picked up a copy of WA for 5 bucks at the last Historicon flea market. I saw a couple more copies there too. I don't know what it's like in the UK,but since it was GW. . .

Now to find the army lists.

Personal logo Shaun Travers Supporting Member of TMP04 Nov 2016 3:01 p.m. PST

There are a few alternatives to DBA for those that are not keen on it. For a few years I used a bunch of rules on a 2'x2' table to see if they were any good. A list of the rules, relays and reviews is here:

link

One day I may get back to it played more rules.

The ones that I think are good DBA alternatives are:
Rally Round the King
Armati 2 (Intro)
Basic Impetus
Fantasy Rules! TCE
Ancients D6
Mighty Armies Ancients (simple but fun)
Justified Ancients (1st edition)

Ones I have but not played but could be good:
Basic Fury
L'Art De La Guerre 100
Maximillian

Yesthatphil04 Nov 2016 4:36 p.m. PST

I enjoyed that series, Shaun … (worth a look guys thumbs up!)

Phil

Personal logo Shaun Travers Supporting Member of TMP04 Nov 2016 11:43 p.m. PST

Hello Phil,

it is not over, just in hiatus. Series three (one being Callinicum and series two being Heraclea) sees a new battle to replay (already chosen) and a whole bunch of rules I would like to test (mostly already chosen). Just getting my ancient mojo back slowly; if gets high enough, the multiple rules, one battle is on!

platypus01au05 Nov 2016 1:51 a.m. PST

While I am a huge fan of DBA, and I would advise to try and get a copy of v3, another option for your 6mm WOTR would be Chipco's Days of Knights.

You could base them on 60mm by 30mm bases, or the 40mm squares that Chipco use.

If you do the 60x30mm bases you could use them for DBA or other rules. You need some command bases (smaller round ones) for DoK. A good set that is specific to the period.

Cheers,
JohnG

Whirlwind05 Nov 2016 2:47 a.m. PST

Thanks for the kind words. I do sometimes get tempted with 40mm x 20mm bases to save money and painting time and playing space, but I do think the bigger bases look better.

aynsley683 Supporting Member of TMP05 Nov 2016 3:46 a.m. PST

Also there something called Triumph, it just got released this weekend here at Fall In, so far it's had a lot more players playing it than DBA 3.

link

I played one of their big demo games one night, fairly easy and straight forward, like most games it uses the standard DBx basing system.

Bozkashi Jones06 Nov 2016 8:41 a.m. PST

Thanks for all the advice gentlemen.

So; I will persevere with DBA due to its elegant simplicity but learn how to play properly. There have been some very good suggestions for Wars of the Roses specific rulesets and these do look very good – especially the tactical decision making involved in A Coat of Steel – but again, I will stick with DBA due to its more generic approach.

I like the idea of the DBA campaign system (but with modifications so there are other aims than just world domination) and for this reason I have my eye on Burgundians, French and Swiss as future expansions, so a less Anglo-specific ruleset is better for me.

I've not done any painting yet – my evenings at the moment seem to be placing some figures on a 40mm base and thinking 'good; I can get two armies out of this lot', then putting them on a 60mm base and thinking 'oh, but that does look SO much better!'. It's not so much the numbers of figures for me; I only put maybe 25% more on (except billmen and MAA where I have 3 ranks instead of 2) – it's the space AROUND the troops where I can place commanders, musicians, etc, which give the whole thing more character…

Still undecided – and the main decision is more to do with space than numbers of figures – but that's a different post!

Thanks all, and I'll post some pics once I've made up my mind!

Nick

hagenthedwarf Inactive Member06 Nov 2016 9:19 a.m. PST

My personal choice is to double the number of figures and stick them on the 15mm bases but larger bases and more figures always looks good.

Hobhood4 Supporting Member of TMP07 Nov 2016 8:42 a.m. PST

I had another look at 1.1 which I've never actually played. It looks remarkably simple after 3.0. Maybe I'll do a mash up with a few 3.0 add on like side support and base widths for distance.. I'll play solo so no rule bending issues…

Ive got 20mm figs on 25mm bases which allows for a few more than 'standard' basing. And other matching armies using 28s and the standard number of figures, but I stagger them so it looks more like 2 ranks.

Thomas Thomas Supporting Member of TMP07 Nov 2016 2:38 p.m. PST

B. Jones:

Thanks for hanging in with DBA – but do get 3.0 makes a world of difference.

Its funny the takes people have on a rule set. In playtest we worried that Elephants were too powerful. And many players continue to insist they are – first time I've ever gotten feedback that they were underpowered.

Set up in 3.0 is flexiable – you need not set up forward if you do not wish too and some armies need to stay back and await developments. Base width movement gives a great scope for manuver and allows use of bigger boards.

Breakoff has been replaced by Recoiling on ties. It is actually very difficult to break out of a melee – your opponent has a bit to say about that – regardless of how "fast" you are.

Again as I always advise – get a copy of 3.0 and try it out. Form your own opinion. (I never liked the geometric tricks of 1.1-2.2 though the basic mechanics were sound.)

TomT

hindsTMP Supporting Member of TMP07 Nov 2016 7:00 p.m. PST

Thanks for hanging in with DBA – but do get 3.0 makes a world of difference.
Debatable. There exists a group of DBA convention players who play-tested 2.x and 3.x., some of whom post on TMP. They prefer 3.0 because they were able to convince the author to incorporate some of their pet ideas. (Had I been aware of this effort, I would probably have tried to do the same thing). Although some of these ideas had merit, some seem to be in the category of "I can't win with this, so change the rules".
Its funny the takes people have on a rule set. In playtest we worried that Elephants were too powerful. And many players continue to insist they are – first time I've ever gotten feedback that they were underpowered.
Actually, no it isn't. See this thread, which you posted to. (Surprised that the Fanaticus server still functions…). link (BTW, none of my DBA armies contain Elephants, although some of my opponents' armies do).
Set up in 3.0 is flexiable – you need not set up forward if you do not wish too and some armies need to stay back and await developments. Base width movement gives a great scope for manuver and allows use of bigger boards.
When you increase movement and then also increase board size, all you have achieved is to lose some of the desirable compactness of the original game. WRT to start lines, allowing the 2 sides to start closer together, on average, reduces time-to-contact and thus reduces scope for maneuver.
Breakoff has been replaced by Recoiling on ties. It is actually very difficult to break out of a melee – your opponent has a bit to say about that – regardless of how "fast" you are.
Tell that to the Parthian horse archers at Carrhae. Remember that in DBA, the type of harassment shooting they engaged in is treated like melee.

Mark H.

Dexter Ward08 Nov 2016 3:06 a.m. PST

Horse Archers shooting isn't really treated like a melee, because the horse archer can't be killed unless someone manage to flank them. Usually they just recoil or flee to come back again later.

lkmjbc308 Nov 2016 8:15 a.m. PST

Mark H…
I am one of those "convention players" of which you speak.

Just to set the record straight… You are ill-informed as to the development of DBA.

In fact, you are as incorrect as one can be. This isn't your fault… but rather stems from the bad feelings generated by some who used to be part of the DBA community that were communicated to the public. These bad feelings plague some of the US community to this day.

Phil actually refused to take the "pet" ideas of the play test group. This in part caused the split in the community.

Later, Phil listened to the concerns of the play test group quite closely. We were concerned with improving DBA's historical feel.

He flat out rejected most of our ideas on how to improve the historical narrative. He did however address this issue with his own ideas.

So, DBA 2.2's (and earlier version's) poor presentation of the Late Medieval Period, the exceedingly bad working of Dark Age warfare, boring depiction of Greek Hoplite warfare, and other concerns were addressed.

Phil didn't however use our ideas (for the most part). Now, we were able to have some effect on the final product. The rules and the ideas however were very much Phil's…

I have a complete email account of the development of the rules from the start of my tenure. That record shows this with great clarity.

In the end, I think Phil did a great job… so much so that I have produced a book of historical scenarios based on DBA 3.

link

Most of these games don't work well under 2.2. Under DBA 3, they are quite good.

Joe Collins

hindsTMP Supporting Member of TMP08 Nov 2016 4:45 p.m. PST

Just to set the record straight… You are ill-informed as to the development of DBA.
Joe,

In general, I have a great deal of respect for you as a DBA gamer, based on your posts both here and on the old Fanaticus site.

Ultimately, I agree that final responsibility for DBA 2.x and 3.x lies with Phil Barker, the author. However, you are fooling yourself if you expect an outsider to believe that the 2.x and 3.x playtesters had no influence on Phil's changes to DBA in those versions. Look at what you just wrote: "Later, Phil listened to the concerns of the play test group quite closely. We were concerned with improving DBA's historical feel". And there is TomT's statement in the previous post that "first time I've ever gotten feedback …", which implies some sort of proprietary relationship with the new rules. Etc. Etc.

Now if you guys were to avoid statements such as this, and were merely to indicate your approval of various 2.x and 3.x changes, your claims of innocent objectivity would be more convincing. You would still encounter players who disagreed with the changes, however.

Horse Archers shooting isn't really treated like a melee, because the horse archer can't be killed unless someone manage to flank them. Usually they just recoil or flee to come back again later.
Dexter:

You should try this in a game. What actually happens in 3.0 is that when a mass of LH attacks infantry (say Parthians versus Romans), although some will retreat, others will be stuck in contact (via the bad new game mechanic I referred to). This in turn opens up gaps in the line of LH which can often translate into overlaps and flanking moves by the infantry, eventually destroying the pinned LH. This is possible in DBA because short-range shooting is handled using the same game mechanics as melee, per my previous comment. In DBA 1.1, it was possible for the LH to move back out of contact.

In the end, I think Phil did a great job… so much so that I have produced a book of historical scenarios based on DBA 3.

Finally, to be clear, DBA 3.0 is a good set of rules. Thing is, so is DBA 1.1, if you have an opponent for it.

Mark H.

Piyan Glupak Inactive Member08 Nov 2016 11:46 p.m. PST

DBA Version 1.1 is my favourite version of DBA, although it is probably a better choice for solo wargamers and small groups rather than tournament players.

Thomas Thomas Supporting Member of TMP09 Nov 2016 10:34 a.m. PST

A few points – while I'm primarly an historical player I play and have played in many DBA tournaments over the years. Contrary to asserations made above I was able to win games/tournaments prior to 3.0 and did not suggest any rule because I was unable to win without it. All my suggestions stemmed from a determination to make DBA a better historical simulation esp. for my area of interest – late medieval.

I think we succeded with equal credit to Phil and the handful of playtesters who hung in for the whole project. If players feel some areas could be improved re simulation value I'm always interested in their feedback but can assure all no rule was adopted that did not either improve the game as a simulation or make it easier to play.

Mr. Hinds I'm aware of your prior feedback that elephants are undervalued – just not anyone else. Most concerns re El is that they are overpowered (my view).

As to LH you seem to have missed the rule that Mounted break off (Recoil) from Foot on ties. They can Recoil a full BW now to avoid being "flanked" by the foot. So they do not get "stuck in combat".

As to manuver the larger MAs allow alternative tactics such as moving quickly to set upon your foe before they can reshuffle their line – that's a manuver. If you've got them wrong footed you no longer have to trundle s l o w l y toward them while they calmly reshuffle their whole battleline. Alternatively you can set farther back and use terrian a light troops to delay their advance while you prepare a hot reception. Alternatively you can delay them while sending out a flanking force which can now move fast enough to arrive before the battle is already decided. Alternatively you can send a fast column round their flank to attack their Camp (with real hope to actually get there). Alternatively …. well I could go on. Larger moves sets up lots of manuver chances other than two lines trundling slowly toward each other and/or shuffling elements to get perfect match ups.

TomT

hindsTMP Supporting Member of TMP09 Nov 2016 2:33 p.m. PST

(text deleted) … can assure all no rule was adopted that did not either improve the game as a simulation or make it easier to play.

Again, this is not universally agreed-upon; not even apparently amongst the playtesters (originally including some of the 2.2+ guys).
Mr. Hinds I'm aware of your prior feedback that elephants are undervalued – just not anyone else. Most concerns re El is that they are overpowered (my view).

Mr. Thomas: I would prefer the word "opinions" to "feedback". Remember, Phil Barker is the author.
.
Regarding my opinions, see again this thread link . Note the Elephants, and their fates. They were destroyed because of post DBA 1.1 Elephant rule changes, requiring extra movement PIPs to move them, causing them to mutually self-destruct on recoil, and reducing their mounted tactical factor. Had these elements been Knights (with IIRC the same movement allowance, mounted tactical factor, and pursuit behavior), or any other mounted for that matter, they would have survived the initial attack unscathed. I assume that you don't believe Knights to be "overpowered" (your terminology).
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I have seen a number of posts which suggest that some rule changes, including those for Elephants, were due to "gut-feeling" responses to effective convention competition gamers, as the following quote (not yours) suggests: "For those worried about elephants … Ron's elephant Panzer division army was thoroughly trounced this year. (He won last year's tournament with this army). Ron is tricky however… don't count him out for next year. I still worry that elephants may be overdone… but less so now." This response does not suggest rational evaluation based on historical evidence.
Again, I have no Elephants in my armies, and like you, I am concerned here about historical simulation and atmosphere.
As to LH you seem to have missed the rule that Mounted break off (Recoil) from Foot on ties. They can Recoil a full BW now to avoid being "flanked" by the foot. So they do not get "stuck in combat".

Good point, but the rule refers to "solid foot". My concern still applies to other troop types. Recall that in 1.1, Light Horse had a MA of 500 paces (IIRC), and so could withdraw at will from practically anything.
As to manuver the larger MAs allow alternative tactics such as moving quickly to set upon your foe before they can reshuffle their line – that's a manuver. If you've got them wrong footed you no longer have to trundle s l o w l y toward them while they calmly reshuffle their whole battleline. Alternatively you can set farther back and use terrian a light troops to delay their advance while you prepare a hot reception. Alternatively you can delay them while sending out a flanking force which can now move fast enough to arrive before the battle is already decided. Alternatively you can send a fast column round their flank to attack their Camp (with real hope to actually get there). Alternatively …. well I could go on. Larger moves sets up lots of manuver chances other than two lines trundling slowly toward each other and/or shuffling elements to get perfect match ups.

You could do all these things before. The movement and board size changes, which largely cancel each other out, were unnecessary, and I do not agree that bigger is better. WRT to shuffling the battle line, the cure is worse than the disease, IMHO. Also, isn't the only way you could have them "wrong-footed" such that they would need to re-arrange, would be if you had set up second (itself an artificial concept). Now we introduce a rule change to keep the opponent from responding to this, and claim it's more realistic? This is the game design equivalent of a "hack".
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Again, in principle, I respect your differing opinions here. I also respect rational argument for a differing point of view. However, I am leery of blanket claims to superior insight based on insider knowledge or claims to be some sort of official conduit to the rules author, who at least in the old days was quite accessible.
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Mark H.

lkmjbc309 Nov 2016 4:15 p.m. PST

Mark- to clarify…

I did not say we had "no effect". I said that Phil didn't take most of our changes. He addressed our concerns with his own new mechanics.

So, very few of our "pet ideas" are contained in the new rules. Many of our concerns however were addressed… though not in ways that we foresaw.

The point is that DBA 3 was changed not to address people's individual preferences for certain armies, rather, the changes were made to produce a game with a better historical narrative feel.

An example of this would be the overpowered blade element. I complained that Dark Ages warfare didn't work well under 2.2 because the Blade is overpowered. I suggested decreasing Blade to +4 in some circumstances. Phil, however decided that the real problem was that spear didn't work well. He can up with the Spear Side Support rule to model a Shieldwall (he also added 3 Huscarl elements to the Saxon army). It works well… and it ended up improving Hoplite fights as well.

Now I can recreate Brunanburh… and other Dark Ages fights as well.

So… I disagree with your analysis that people's pet ideas were incorporated. I would say "our concerns were addressed".

In fact… the game would be better if Phil had incorporated some of those "Pet Ideas".

Whose?

Mine of course!

LOL…

Joe Collins

hindsTMP Supporting Member of TMP09 Nov 2016 5:05 p.m. PST

Joe:

Fine; "concerns were addressed". I am kicking myself for not being there to suggest alternate solutions for some of those concerns. Sour grapes …

MH

Henry Martini09 Nov 2016 6:01 p.m. PST

In reading this exchange I'm struck by the thought that when, in a set of rules that claims to represent 4,500 years of warfare, you make adjustments in an attempt to more accurately reflect particular nuances of combat in one small sub-period of that 4,500 year span, it might be inevitable that the accuracy of the depiction of other sub-periods will suffer as a consequence.

lkmjbc310 Nov 2016 10:34 a.m. PST

MH:

LOL… not that Phil would have used your suggestions…

But, more seriously, you would have had a positive effect.

Perhaps, in the future…

Joe Collins

chriscoz06 Dec 2016 6:53 p.m. PST

To add my two cents…Armati has 25mm basing similar to the DBx world. And its my favorite game--and I like DBA and Warrior Kings too.

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