Unit question

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Unit question

Postby Ileryios of Braavos » Thu Sep 20, 2012 1:23 pm

Can I make the unit sizes larger? I'm thinking like 350, 400? Please help
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Re: Unit question

Postby Zorbeltuss » Thu Sep 20, 2012 2:38 pm

If you feel that it makes the story better, sure.

Though keep in mind that with 20-30 minor houses in a realm, if not more, and each of those might commit a couple of units each to a host, armies could get humongous in size that way once you look at how things scale.
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Re: Unit question

Postby Legate » Thu Sep 20, 2012 2:47 pm

Just being curious; why do you need larger units?

You would also have to keep in mind (looking from a historical POV) that units were small in Medieval era as you still needed someone back home working on the farms. You could have larger unit formations, but I would also lower one or all of the House Lands, Population, or Wealth stats to compensate.
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Re: Unit question

Postby Paedrig » Fri Sep 21, 2012 6:56 am

I assume it is foremost a matter of "fluff" so to speak - to make a battle more dramatic by having much more warriors on each side - but without the problem that managing more than a few units can become very complicated...

And while many "battle" of medieval times were mostly skirmishes, there were also real big battlees with some ten thousend on each side...
And of course if you want to replay the Battle at the Trident etc. (or at least a important part of it) you might want bigger unit to keep your game operative so to speak... :wink:
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Re: Unit question

Postby Kajani » Fri Sep 21, 2012 7:01 am

In the last Case I would simply increase the number of men in a unit to 50/250 or 100/500 riders/ infantry and say that such an unit is build from the men of several smaller lords (or the men of one real great house). Than there is no problem of greater units.
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Re: Unit question

Postby DaimosofRedstone » Fri Sep 21, 2012 7:37 am

Or you could simply designate 'wings' and 'center' and their cavalry component.
In Medieval warfare most of the strategy consists of 'Now that you found your enemy, attack him frontally while your cavalry tries to turn his flanks (if it is not busy smashing through the center)'.
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Re: Unit question

Postby Paedrig » Fri Sep 21, 2012 8:10 am

Many times the warfare was certainly not so sophisticated like in the glorious ancient times (allthough Vegetius remained popular).
But even in medieval times there were also some complex battle plans - and of course such armies like the mongols, the turks, the arabs and of course the army of Byzanz used more sophisticated plans.
And of course medieval armies which must face such enemies had to learn quickly - or were even more quickly desintegrated...

But it is of course a possiblity (and i also want to use it) to only "play" a part of the whole battle - f. e. a wing or even a sub element of a wing.
Given the fact that a normal home house most times will only play a minor role in the REAL BIG Battles (Trident, Green Fork, Kings Landing etc.) this is certainly enough (and give the GM the opportunity to handle some parts of the battle by storytelling).

But of course if you really REALLY want to play the Young Dragon (or Rhaeger vs. Robert) etc. - than you should in fact use bigger units or the mentioned idea of divide the army into wings/ centers...
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Re: Unit question

Postby DaimosofRedstone » Fri Sep 21, 2012 10:12 am

@Bearded Dork:
One reason why we tend to run only skirmishes in our group.
There you can at least do something while in large battles you will have to mostly focus on staying alive.
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Re: Unit question

Postby BeardedDork » Fri Sep 21, 2012 2:31 pm

How did I get brought into this? I have absolutely no opinion on it.
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Re: Unit question

Postby Flagg » Fri Sep 21, 2012 2:51 pm

BeardedDork wrote:How did I get brought into this?


Must be the beard.
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Re: Unit question

Postby DaimosofRedstone » Sat Sep 22, 2012 3:52 am

BeardedDork wrote:How did I get brought into this? I have absolutely no opinion on it.

Must be too little sleep.
Perhaps i just see you as a paragon of opinion i can always talk to. :)
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Re: Unit question

Postby Tedric » Sat Sep 22, 2012 8:02 am

I was asking the same question but about the opposite : is it possible to reduce the size of a unit?

I'm just starting the game as a Narrator and created a "test" House. My defence is a single tower. My power points allows me to create 1 trained cavalry unit and one trained infantry unit...and I have points remaining.
My thought is : would it be realistic to have 120 trained soldiers (and horses) in or around a single tower? It will be very crowded..no?

What about using half the points needed to create a half unit?
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Re: Unit question

Postby Kajani » Sat Sep 22, 2012 8:25 am

I would say this should more fix in another way. At first - nobody force you to have all your men under arms. This mean, You MUST not "spend" all power-points in the beginning. You could still hold them in reserve and giving them away if needed.
Second you could say that you have spend the power-points, but the units are not all time in full strength. Perhaps many of the soldiers live still in the villages/ hamlets/ whatever, so that at your tower only a body of some dozen men is ready...

Of course You could also reduce the number of units, but on the other hand, if I look in the books, the forces of some houses are not so small. House Manderly (sure a major, but anyway) could arm more than 1.000 men, the major house Frey even more...
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Re: Unit question

Postby Zorbeltuss » Sat Sep 22, 2012 10:18 am

I think Manderly is a weight class above Frey, pre-GoT at least.
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Re: Unit question

Postby stew31r » Sat Sep 22, 2012 1:14 pm

In the books Manderly claimed that he could field something like 3,000 infantry and 500 armored horse, if I remember correctly. That's a small army in and of itself.
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Re: Unit question

Postby DaimosofRedstone » Sun Sep 23, 2012 3:36 am

The 3000 Infantry sounds right.
But the 500 armored horses is a bit dissonant.
It is like 'I can field 3000 men of Militia and 500 Tanks'.
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Re: Unit question

Postby Kajani » Sun Sep 23, 2012 4:46 am

Spoiler

When the men of Lord Manderly joined Robbs Army he send if I rememvered right around 1.500 men: twenty-odd knights with as many squires, two hundred lances, swordsmen, and freeriders, and the rest foot armed with spears, pikes, and tridents. Many of this men surely died in the south and during the Red Wedding, and still he had the power to raise a huge number of soldiers and recruit warships in numbers which mean around 5 full-size warship-units...
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Re: Unit question

Postby Tedric » Sun Sep 23, 2012 7:11 am

Thank you very much for your advice Kajani. it helps indeed and i was also thinking at not have all the men under arms.
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Re: Unit question

Postby stew31r » Sun Sep 23, 2012 10:07 am

Armored horse is typically used as a term for heavy cavalry, meaning that the riders were armor beyond that of common soldiers, typically mail or better, which is the type of cavalry in the troop section of the game. What it means is that these men can fight in a melee effectively against most troop types, unlike light horse units which are normally scouts and skirmishers relying on speed and maneuverability, not a all out shock charge. A city like White Harbor, with it's attendant liege men, could easily field that many heavy cavalry. The Manderlys could probably afford to equip them out of their coffers alone.
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Re: Unit question

Postby DaimosofRedstone » Sun Sep 23, 2012 11:16 am

One armored knight, just to purchase the gear, uses up the whole wealth (not the yearly revenue, the whole wealth) of a typical village in cattle. Spread over time that amounts, depending on harvests, to 10-20 years of revenue from just one village.
500 of them amount to 5000 to 10000 villageyears worth of cattle.
No mean feat.
helmet = 6 cows
Scale Mail = 12 cows
Greaves = 6 cows
Sword = 7 cows
Lance and shield = 2 cows
Warhorse = 12 cows
= 45 cows.
Not mentioned are saddles, stirrups, horse for travel, cart to transport the equipment, whatever tows the cart, servants, etc.
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Re: Unit question

Postby Kajani » Mon Sep 24, 2012 8:17 am

While in Westeros the "price" of a knight is even higher (the sword alone cost - if not in very bad quality - more in stags than 50 cows), you may not forget that this money must not paid every time in short term. A sword and even a armour may be used over more than a generation (even in reality armours were some times used over a lot of years). And of course it may be that the lords in Westeros have more money in their pockets, at least the wealthy one. The Lannister for example are easily more wealthy than the Fuggers, I guess. Freeriders and hedge knights may bring their weapons etc. with them. And we should not forget how huge westeros is - a lot of place for settlements which may pay the taxes for the knights. If I am correct the army of Westeros is more a late medieval or from the times early after the end of the middle-ages, the old feudal systems may on some aspects not work in full size. I do not know how much soldiers and knights good old England (without the scotish area) could bring up altogether, but we speak about thousands and thousands I guess. And now compare the size of England with Westeros... at least for the land north of Dorne and south of the neck the number of people and soldier per suqare mile should be the same.
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Re: Unit question

Postby DaimosofRedstone » Mon Sep 24, 2012 10:12 am

Though England did so by way of 'Men-at-arms', professional soldiers paid by the king via a stipend to the commander or even directly. That is damn close to the company system that will rule Europe up until the second half of the 18th century.
But Westeros is no England.
The Central Authority is weak, the Magnates are strong, Trade is so-so but it clearly is not the hat of the Westerosi.
I find myself again and again reminded more of the Holy Roman Empire than of England when reading of Westeros.

@prices:
I assumed a lot can be handed down, but one of the most important cost factors, the horse, cannot, actually a knight will most likely use up multiple horses in one battle, much less a lifetime. And then there is breakage, plundering of corpse and even weapons rust and decay at some point.
But still, that is why i expressed it in 'villagecattleyears'.
Westeros surely can field armored horse, in substantial amounts no doubt.
But the expenses that Manderly, who is 'only' second to third tier, would have occured, even over the years, would still have been substantial. 100 years for 100 years even with nothing getting broken, lost, etc. means that is ALL that is bought by those villages in that time.
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Re: Unit question

Postby Tedric » Mon Sep 24, 2012 11:04 am

A freind of mine ran the Blackfyre campaign. He assumed each Major House could raise around 40.000 men making no difference between knights, freeriders, infantry and mob. And this if each lord called all his banners, what we call in French "le ban et l'arrière-ban", leaving nobody behind.
Here is the detail :

House Stark : around 45.000 men
House Baratheon : 35.000 men
House Lannister : 50.000 men
House Tully : 45.000 men
House Arryn : 45.000 men
House Tyrell : 80.000 men
House Martell : 50;000 men
House Greyjoy : 20.000 men

Maybe for a later campaign I would reduce the strengh of House Arryn to 30.000 and Tully too. But it gives a good idea of what is possible.
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Re: Unit question

Postby Kajani » Tue Sep 25, 2012 12:01 am

I would say the numbers which could and would send in foreign land should be a little bit smaller. I think Robb had summoned all men the smaller houses of the North could and would send, and that were around 20.000. Of course there are still a number of men saying at home because several lords were not full-hearted behind the war. The number of 45.000 for house Stark could very well correct but a call which leaves no men behind is very unlikely even during such a thing like the Blackfyre campaign. For a "total war" fight from the North with the last men able, it would be necessary that the Wildlings or...others :lol: break the wall or similar, I guess.
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Re: Unit question

Postby superbat_99 » Tue Sep 25, 2012 9:13 am

I'm pretty sure that in the book Rob would have been able to raise twice what he did if he waited another month or two the problem up there is distances and lack of roads for easy communication and travel.

The Manderlys have a lot of cavalry in later books, the mountain clans weren't exhausted either. So I think 40,000 would be where they stand for mobilization into other areas with a few more if they were invaded.
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