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Author Topic: shield walls idea  (Read 11968 times)
svenlein
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Posts: 114


« on: September 20, 2002, 04:33:24 AM »

Here is an idea i had last night:

Each person next to you that is in a defensive stance and has a heater sheild gives you a +1 die to defensive actions, tower shields give +2.

Impressions?

Not based on reality?

Scott
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Jake Norwood
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« Reply #1 on: September 20, 2002, 08:03:12 AM »

Hmmm...this is something I'd love to do some research on and work out for the Flower of Battle. Let's get some more feedback on Scott's idea here, guys...

Jake
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"Civilized men are more discourteous than savages because they know they can be impolite without having their skulls split, as a general thing." -R.E. Howard The Tower of the Elephant
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Herr Nils
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« Reply #2 on: September 20, 2002, 08:23:16 AM »

Bay having some one at your side even if he hasnít a shield is of a great help. You second (or wing man) do not even have to be weary skillful, he is still of a tremendous help.


Hear are some battles that ARMA Stockholm have hade. The films are a about 3Mg size.


http://www.nada.kth.se/~d95-jsj/avis/batalj1.avi
http://www.nada.kth.se/~d95-jsj/avis/batalj2.avi
http://www.nada.kth.se/~d95-jsj/avis/batalj3.avi
http://www.nada.kth.se/~jsh/hobby/avis/nicke-batalj.avi
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Thirsty Viking
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Posts: 238


« Reply #3 on: September 20, 2002, 08:33:38 AM »

Makes a lot of sence,  especially for missle fire.  That would be why breaking the shield wall is so important.  
That being said...  
 
I think it should only be give for the man on your right side...   your shield is alread on your left...   you help protect the man on your left...   you provide very little protection to the man on your right...  almost none.  Remember the position on the right was considered the position of honor  be cause he was exposed.

You can however attack the man in front of you,  or in front of the man to your right quite easily without breaking formation.  

This is only effective longterm with ranks of soldiers ready to fill the gaps.  Formation fighting should be a proficency soldiers have.   You can use sword and shield i guess...  but remember that it is a different sword and shield.   The user is far less mobile,  and more restricted in his selection of attacks that maintain integrity of the shield wall.

The Deed of Paksenarion   is a very good read  and dwells on some of this when she is a soldier in a mercenary company, also afterward when she is training recruits mid campaign.   Duelists who were added  had trouble learning not to do the wrong things.

Also  shorter weapons are easier to use unless polearms are iemployed...   if polearms  the usually 2-3 ranks have stacked layers of attack in front of the first man.
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svenlein
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Posts: 114


« Reply #4 on: September 20, 2002, 12:50:04 PM »

here is a very interesting essay related to spears, but it has a lot of spear and shield formation information too

http://www.staff.ncl.ac.uk/nikolas.lloyd/weapons/spear.html
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Jake Norwood
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« Reply #5 on: September 21, 2002, 11:56:06 AM »

I spent some time on that site, too. There is some great practical stuff, and while I don't know that I agree with everything, 90% of the time I'm nodding my head and going "uh-huh.." Thanks, that site rocks!

Jake
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svenlein
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« Reply #6 on: September 22, 2002, 09:39:51 AM »

what is the 10% you dont agree with?
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Jake Norwood
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« Reply #7 on: September 22, 2002, 12:33:38 PM »

hah! I knew someone would ask.

The 10% is really more of a saftey net then anything specific. I don't want to give anything that I haven't poured over at great length a 100% approval rating. I read the thing once all the way through, and found that I agree with what the guy's saying, but I didn't put enough real contemplation into it to decide if I truly agree with it all. That's all.

What did stick out to me were a few of his observations on spear use seemed well thought out but had a little bit of "I'd need to try it/see it before making that kind of judgement." I did really enjoy his bit on both the Katana and Francisca. Basically his evidence is very well thought out and anecdotal, but not neccessarily correct. I only agree with 95% of what I think...

Jake
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"Civilized men are more discourteous than savages because they know they can be impolite without having their skulls split, as a general thing." -R.E. Howard The Tower of the Elephant
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Lance D. Allen
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« Reply #8 on: September 23, 2002, 11:51:49 AM »

Quote
I think it should only be give for the man on your right side... your shield is alread on your left... you help protect the man on your left... you provide very little protection to the man on your right... almost none. Remember the position on the right was considered the position of honor be cause he was exposed.


Remember that not all men are right handed...

Also, keeping in mind that a spear can make use of a gap, whether it be sword-side or shield-side, I think the bonus should apply equally to both sides.

Honestly, though.. Attacking at all, except attacks of opportunity (ie, someone lowers their guard) isn't the shieldman's job in a shieldwall. If you commit anything to an attack, you are taking a risk that could end with not only your death, but the deaths of your peers. The job of the shieldman is to hold the line, not to kill. The spears which form up behind the shieldwalls are there to do the killing, at least until one or the other of the lines breaks. Once the line is broken, then and only then should the shieldman think of attacking, because if the shieldwall is allowed to recover, then the standstill resumes; If it does not, chances are the army who broke will be forced to retreat and regroup, and will possibly be routed and cut down.
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Brian Leybourne
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Posts: 1793


« Reply #9 on: September 23, 2002, 12:29:51 PM »

Quote from: Wolfen
Honestly, though.. Attacking at all, except attacks of opportunity (ie, someone lowers their guard) isn't the shieldman's job in a shieldwall. If you commit anything to an attack, you are taking a risk that could end with not only your death, but the deaths of your peers. The job of the shieldman is to hold the line, not to kill.


That's not quite correct. The shieldmen had short thrusting spears or blades, and their job was to block the man in front of them with the shield on their left hand, and stab the man in front and to the right (i.e. the guy facing your buddy on your right hand side) with your weapon in your right hand. This is why shield walls were so effective until anyone caught on, because the opponents facing a shield wall would be defending against the guy in front of them and not be expecting the attack from their right.

Stab forward and to the right, take a step. Stab forward and to the right, take a step. Wash, rinse, repeat.

And tough luck if you're left handed. Get over it.

Brian.
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Brian Leybourne
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Mike Holmes
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« Reply #10 on: September 23, 2002, 01:13:25 PM »

OK, I just gotta mention this. Kinda OT, but cool.

In an old Conan comic I once read, it starts out with Conan at the head of this army. They were meeting a traditional foe at a traditional site. As was also tradition, both armies lined up into long lines and approached each other, so as to line up with another man across the way. On a signal (a horn blowing or something) the battle was to begin, each man facing off against his opponent. Of course everyone had swords and shields.

On the signal, Conan's army all do a half-left, and stab the guy to their left instead of the guy in front of them thus avoiding their foe's shields entirely. The whole enemy line disintigrates like a house of cards.

Probably would never happen IRL, but very cool idea for a comic. :-)

Mike
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Valamir
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« Reply #11 on: September 23, 2002, 01:28:26 PM »

Quote from: BrianL

That's not quite correct. The shieldmen had short thrusting spears or blades, and their job was to block the man in front of them with the shield on their left hand, and stab the man in front and to the right (i.e. the guy facing your buddy on your right hand side) with your weapon in your right hand. This is why shield walls were so effective until anyone caught on, because the opponents facing a shield wall would be defending against the guy in front of them and not be expecting the attack from their right.

Stab forward and to the right, take a step. Stab forward and to the right, take a step. Wash, rinse, repeat.

And tough luck if you're left handed. Get over it.

Brian.


Yeah, there's a reason why Rome conquered the world with a BIG shield and a LITTLE sword.

And left handed...what is left handed.  The whole concept is simply a matter of weak willed parents allowing their children to grow up using the wrong hand without correcting them ;-)

There would be no left handed warriors in the battle line.  I couldn't say for Rapier duels...there perhaps were left handed duelists...but not soldiers.  

I don't imagine it makes much difference now when squads fight in open order...but even in the 1800s I doubt a trained regular in any western army would be permitted to fire left handed (save perhaps for very skilled marksmen).
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Lyrax
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Posts: 268


« Reply #12 on: September 24, 2002, 01:43:25 PM »

For a long time in earth's history, lefties were forced to train with their right hands until they were more right-handed than left-handed.

So there.  All men were right-handed.
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Lance Meibos
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Thirsty Viking
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« Reply #13 on: September 24, 2002, 03:53:24 PM »

Quote from: Valamir

And left handed...what is left handed.  The whole concept is simply a matter of weak willed parents allowing their children to grow up using the wrong hand without correcting them ;-)


An interesting thought,  but an unprovable one.  This early training may have been at the expense of thier unltimate agility level.   An interesting trade off.   Right handed at less agility, or left handed at thier genetic agility.

Argue all you want... it is rather unprovable, and a perfect game mechanic answer in our world where the masses don't take identical training for a good baseline.  Maybe if i'd been allowed to be a lefty, my hand writting would have been legible?
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John Doerter   Nashville TN
Spartan
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« Reply #14 on: September 24, 2002, 03:55:02 PM »

Quote from: Lyrax
For a long time in earth's history, lefties were forced to train with their right hands until they were more right-handed than left-handed.

With one notable exception:

Judges 20:16:  "Among this army were seven hundred specially-trained left-handed soldiers.  Each one could sling a stone and hit even the smallest target." (from the netbible)

As a leftie, that verse just thrills me. :)

-Mark
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