CVG

Games => Art de la Guerre => Topic started by: bigchris on January 15, 2018, 10:41:33 AM

Title: List building
Post by: bigchris on January 15, 2018, 10:41:33 AM
So, after this weekends pummeling  :P, I started the day doing research.  Seems there was alot about list building in this game I missed.  this is what I found;

- If you don't want to lose quickly, try to take more units if you can... Armies with 27-30 units are really difficult to break.

- Horse archers, Always think to take them as elite when possible.  Elite can protect your cavalrymen from taking too many losses but also give them better chance to inflict losses...

- Heavy Infantry armies should often have 22 units or more... But it's sometime difficult with points.

- Cavalry armies shouldn't have less than 20 units.

- Generals are really important!  Always build your corps thinking that you could make several 1's on die rolls. So assume you can move all your troops with a 1 result. An heavy infantry corps could often have an ordinary general but a cavalry corps will be better with a competent or a brilliant one.

- For a corps with impetuous or non manoeuvrable troops, you should think about buying a brilliant general.

- Don't included generals in melee units.  You can lose your general on a bad roll of the dice! But, I think for horse mounted archerey units, it's a very good way to spare points...

- Elite and armor are wonderful capacities. But very expensive ones. Be sure your elite troops will not be crushed to easily because they are out numbered.
Title: Re: List building
Post by: bigchris on January 15, 2018, 11:22:08 AM
Samurai revamp attempt 1, based on list building suggestions posted above.

I Corps     95 Points
8 Heavy Cavalry Bow
Strategist Included

II Corps    72 Points
8 Heavy Swordsman 2HW
Ordinary General

III Corps   33 Points
4 Followers with Yari, Mediocre
2 Followers With Bow, Mediocre
1 Stampeding Herd (Scythed Chariot)

200 Points.  Corps now have specific roles.  I Corps SKirmishes, threatens flanks.  II Corps is the Main fighting line.  III Corps guards the camp and covers II corps Flank.
Title: Re: List building
Post by: AvogadroTheMole on January 15, 2018, 06:23:08 PM
Yup. Rough weekend for team CVG. Except that scallawag, Cunningham!

The great thing about ADG is that each lesson has a reasonable counterpoint. The real knack for list building seems to be in finding the balance that works best for the player, with some consideration to the theme (or lack thereof) of what they will be playing in. Armies of 25+ get really hard to break, but it gets increasingly difficult to order those troops to the locations you need them to get good matchups, set up flanks etc. Also, your quality goes down very quickly and some elite troops getting the jump on you can blow holes open before you were ready with reserves, 2nd lines, etc. Also, with so few good troops it can be hard to force the issue and punch holes when time is a factor. Vice versa, all of that can be said in the opposite for tiny armies with ~18 stands.

Looking at your new list:

8 Hcav bow is a little much if you only plan on skirmishing. Also, a few elites in there to lead stacked shots is great if you want to be a little more aggressive with them (I tend to think of skirmishing wings as doing little more than getting in the way of the enemy and preventing double moves, and only really taking serious shooting if the enemy is slower than them). Drop one, and maybe downgrade the strategist to brilliant, upgrade two to elite and you basically have enough points left to take one of those great Msword/Bow guys. Now your cav wing is possibly better at shooting and is less afraid of seeing that one small terrain piece on the otherwise wide open side of the board you want to send them to.

I think you should consider intermixing your MI and HI a little. Imagine this scenario: you go to deploy but there is meaningful terrain in two places on the board. You can only deploy your rough ground command to one of them. The other will represent a terrifying flank possibility to either or both of the HI and mounted commands if your opponent sends so much as a mediocre javelinmen into it (see above idea for cav corps). I view the scythed chariot rather dimly. It adds nothing to your breakpoint (nor counts against when killed) and rarely does any actual damage. It also does not want to enter terrain, which conflicts with the MI's stated purpose. I recommend considering converting a HI or two into MI sword/bow or MI 2HW, using points from the expendable to do so. You still have a serious HI line to provide staying power but you also have a couple of guys who can contest (and maybe win) that stupid little field near the middle of the board that you cannot waste the MI command on.

That MI command needs to be willing to split up a little (like a few UDs) and stagger these lines as the enemy MI approach. They are a lot of lousy troops and need to get flanks (preferably with the bows) if they want to reliably take down equivalent points of average MI. But they do pad the breakpoint, so if they stay out of trouble the enemy will have to go through far more HI and Hcav to win. If you want cheap units that might ("might") have more value than the Bowmen and are not wedded to the strategist you could take a couple of Lcav. If you get 2 you gain a +1 to your initiative, which would balance out the strategist's +1 and could potentially play one of several very useful rolls.

Title: Re: List building
Post by: Michael on January 15, 2018, 11:51:41 PM
Now I'm a scalawag? I'll have to go around saying "Argh, avast ye maties!"  ;)

I agree with Matt on general principles and would probably go with something like this, if I were playing the Samurai:

SAMURAI
Corps I
Brilliant Commander
6x Samurai w sword (HI, 2HW)
4x Samurai w sword (MI, 2HW)

Corps II
Competent Commander
2x Samurai w bow (MI, sword, bow)
4x Followers w yari (MI, spear, mediocre)

Corps III
4x Mounted Samurai (HCv, bow)
2x Emishi (MCv, bow)

22 units, 200 points even

Corps I holds the center with the line of heavy sword. The medium sword can serve as a reserve or go into nearby rough terrain and threaten flanks. If necessary, you can split them up into two groups of two, especially if you have rough terrain on either side of the main line. Corp II tries to find rough terrain to shoot out of. If none is available, they can shoot for a while and force the enemy to charge the medium spear (I would arrange the group like this: FSFFSF, where F is a follower and S is a Samurai. That way the bow can cover the whole line). Corps III protects flanks, looks for flanks to exploit, and generally causes trouble (MCv are very efficient flankers - they will take a point of cohesion away and cause the enemy's unit to have a base factor of 0).

Elephants and cataphracts will still be a problem, but knights shouldn't bother the heavy sword nearly as much as they do the medium sword.
 
Title: Re: List building
Post by: bigchris on January 16, 2018, 09:16:10 AM
Thanks for the feedback.

I think Elephants and Cataphracts will be tough no matter what, but fielding a mostly medium infantry Army is what my biggest handicap for this tournament was (along with consistently rolling 1's and 2's).  There is definitely a steeper learning curve for this game than I had previously appreciated. I may shuffle some pieces around and keep plugging away at this list using your ideas.  I think what I need to do is take my own advice and play the list until I know it front and back.

Title: Re: List building
Post by: AvogadroTheMole on January 16, 2018, 03:15:13 PM
Now I'm a scalawag? I'll have to go around saying "Argh, avast ye maties!"  ;)

I expected better from an historian than to assume pirates. :o)

Scalawags were southern white post-war profiteers in the new order. Similar to carpetbaggers (northern whites who came down to profit).


Chris, practice does make perfect. Throwing into one of the biggest and most competitive events of the US ADG calendar was always going to be a tough ask for someone new to ancients and with only a handful of games under the belt. More play helps a lot to begin to see the patterns of the game and the ebb and flow of troop movements. It took me a while to understand where the points of contact would be and the resulting match ups. But once I started to see them I could begin to try and take control over those variables and engineer better situations. Even if you see a horrible series of combats developing, if you see it early enough you can help yourself by delaying, walking away, shuffling troops, pressing harder where you have better situations, etc. The more games with more opponents and armies, the easier it is to see the dangers and the opportunities.

While I think Mike and I both offer good list advice, I think you are on point in thinking that playing your list into complete familiarity is the single best way forward. I have found ADG is far more about being good at playing your list/being a better player than it is about crafting a superior list. Certainly in an environment where you cannot bank on knowing your opponents' list and play style.
Title: Re: List building
Post by: Michael on January 16, 2018, 08:31:40 PM
Scalawags were southern white post-war profiteers in the new order. Similar to carpetbaggers (northern whites who came down to profit).

Bah! American history - who cares about that?
Title: Re: List building
Post by: bigchris on January 16, 2018, 10:03:38 PM
So I am currently considering three other armies and would like feedback on which one you guys might fit my play style, defensive, better.

1. Classical Greek
2. Feudal Spanish
3. Scythians
Title: Re: List building
Post by: bigchris on January 17, 2018, 01:35:12 PM
Here is a Feudal Spanish List I put together;

Feudal Spanish; 1068-1081
Initiative: 2
Fortified Camp
23 Units

I Corps
Brilliant Corps Commander (Included)
Medium Knight Impetuous x2, Elite
Medium Knight Impetuous x2
Medium Cavalry Impetuous x2

II Corps
Competent Corps Commander (Included)
Medium Knight Impetuous x2, Elite
Medium Knight Impetuous x2
Medium Cavalry Impetuous x2

III Corps
Competent Corps Commander
Heavy Spearmen x8
Light Infantry Bow x2

Title: Re: List building
Post by: Michael on January 17, 2018, 07:50:45 PM
That looks like a typical knight-centered list, and would probably do well against most things. I'm not sure that it fits your style, though. Impetuous armies are generally "point and shoot." You line them up and let them run forward. The trick is lining them up in the right place, so they have good match-ups when they hit the enemy line.

If you are looking for something defensive, you will probably prefer the Greeks. They can pack a surprising amount of heavy spear into a 200 point list, something Bob R. loves to do. I find it a bit boring, because it has very little mobility, but it's pretty resilient and can win games by sheer attrition.

The Scythians are a completely different army type, and definitely not defensive. What you have to do with them is get the attack, run as far forward as possible, shoot, evade, shoot, evade, shoot, evade, and hope that your opponent runs out of units before he chases you off the board.

If you are looking for a list that is unusual, but has some good options for units, take a look at Pyrrhus (no.44). His list has a mix of pike, cavalry, a couple of elephants, heavy spear (hoplites), and a few light troops thrown in. I played him in a tournament once, and every time I told my opponents what I was playing, they said "Who?" So, it's pretty likely you'll be the only one playing him.
Title: Re: List building
Post by: AvogadroTheMole on January 18, 2018, 11:52:59 AM
Well, that Spanish list is the exact opposite of defensive. That is an attack, attack, and attack some more style list. It also has a bear of a time repositioning. Kris Snyder plays a very similar list (when the theming allows he goes exclusively with the knights, otherwise exclusively as Hcav, he does not seem to be interested in mixing them) and has had some success. When things like opposing cav or swordsmen cannot get away his knights have a good time. But as soon as his opponent has troops/command that allows some dancing and delaying things get rocky for him quickly. I faced him (using the cav version because of the period) at the NE team tournament last year. My pip-rich, evade-capable Byzantine cavalry caused him a ton of headaches and by the time he really ran them to ground I had already picked off a couple horse with flank attacks and crumpled his pedestrians, giving me a clear win. Another point, your list has both low initiative and zero capability to handle terrain. If some punk gets a field somewhere near the center of the board and so much as a javelinmen into it the entire line of horse will find itself at risk of being flanked. Also, you will risk going 2nd a lot which mean your opponent will have both more time and space to respond to your chargey horde of doom, making in more likely they will get icky things like Hspear in front of them.

The greeks are a classic (hah!) army. They are pretty low on the aggression. If you try them I endorse trying to get whatever MI you can into there. You probably will not win many of those terrain fights, but you can show your opponent that he probably cannot simply wait out an easy victory and threaten your flanks. Also, the mounted is very weak. Do not take too much. If the list has any bowmen, take them. Your army will be very passive and peppering an enemy with arrows is one of the best ways to convince them to commit to fighting or running. Also, they would be wonderful against mounted bow armies, which will be one of your weakest matchups.

Mike is right that Phyyric is pretty uncommon (Seleucid is the popular hellenistic successor army). Don Manser had a Phyyric list at the USTT last week. But I think that was because he loves pike (I played him at Cold Wars and his Alex the Great list had the legal minimum of things with four legs and either maxed or nearly maxed pike). Phyyrus is great for that since you can take lots of mediocre pike. One of the best parts about playing a Phyyric type list is that you can easily morph it into any of nearly a dozen hellenistic lists and get different support troops or find one that lets you be cav-heavy instead.

Scythians need to be a patient army. Shooting is not a quick killer in this game. It is rarely ever a killer, actually. Even if you max out on the charging cavalry option(s) in this list you will need to plink away and try to pull the enemies formation apart bit by bit. This will allow you to set up stronger stacked shots and eventually flank attacks to finish stands off. And it may take a long time to tease out the wrong type of opposing army. If you take the charging horse it will be very important to time when to send them forward. A lot of enemies will see them as the target they can come to grips with, so too exposed and you risk losing your hammer to a healthy enemy. Committed too late and your hopes of breaking the enemy for a real win will not have time to come to fruition. An army with significant numbers of Bowmen and/or mixed units is your bane. Armies with lots of chargey horse are also a problem. A heavy foot army, preferably with lots of swordsmen, but spears are mostly the same, too, is probably your ideal matchup. Although if enough of them have armor than that can put a bit of a damper.
Title: Re: List building
Post by: bigchris on January 20, 2018, 10:32:40 AM
So, Having never looked at the Pyrrhic list before, your recommendations had me give it a good read.  Though, to be fair, having the flu these last few days gave me ample opportunity to read when I wasn't sleeping.  So this is the preliminary list I put together.

Pyrrhic 280-275 BC

I Corps
Ordinary General
Epirotes and Macedonians; Pikemen x3
Tarentine Phalangites; Pikemen, mediocre x3
Greek Hoplites; Heavy Spearmen, mediocre x2
Rhodian Slingers; Light Infantry Sling x2

II Corps
Ordinary General
Epirotes and Macedonians; Pikemen x3
Tarentine Phalangites; Pikemen, mediocre x3
Greek Hoplites; Heavy Spearmen, mediocre x2
Light Troops; Light Infantry Bow x2

III Corps
Brilliant General, Included
Xystophoroi; Heavy Cavalry Impact Elite x2
Greek Horsemen; Heavy Cavalry x2

24 units and 199 points.  I could downgrade the III Corps General to Ordinary and get a Fortified Camp (I noticed quite a few of those in my games at the tournament)
Title: Re: List building
Post by: Michael on January 20, 2018, 04:55:28 PM
Wow! That's a serious amount of pike. Since pike require two CP to do a full or half turn, I think you'll find ordinary commanders overwhelmed by the strain of maneuver. I would recommend having at least a competent commander (brilliant or Pyrrhus himself would be even better) with each pike block. The cavalry wing, with only four units, should be fine with just an ordinary commander.

Although pike can handle just about anything, including knights and elephants, I enjoyed having an elephant or two in my Pyrrhic force. They can cover any field or brush terrain and can put the fear of god into opposing knights or other cavalry. I usually pair them with a couple of hypaspists (the medium spear variety).

However you decide to configure it, though, I think you will enjoy playing the force.
Title: Re: List building
Post by: bigchris on January 20, 2018, 05:47:50 PM
I switched around the Generals so that each Infantry Corps has a Competent commander and an Ordinary for the Cavalry Wing.  I thought about the Elephants but wasn't sure how to work the list to fit them in.  Do you remember the list you put together?
Title: Re: List building
Post by: Michael on January 21, 2018, 12:52:51 AM
For Pyrrhus in Italy, I did something along these lines:

Pyrrhus at Heraclea (280 BC)

I Corps
Pyrrhus
2x Guards (elite pike)
2x Epirotes (ordinary pike)
2x Tarentines (mediocre pike)
2x Xystophoroi

II Corps
Brilliant commander
2x Greek horsemen (medium cav)
4x Greek hoplites
1x Light troops (LI bow)
 
III Corps
Competent commander
2x Tarentine horsemen (LH Bow)
1x Elephant
2x Samnite mercenaries (MI sword)
1x Rhodian slingers

That's 21 units and 200 points exactly. I usually have the pike in the center with the other two on the wings. The key is to guess which wing will have your opponent's cavalry and put the elephants there.

 
Title: Re: List building
Post by: bigchris on January 21, 2018, 10:07:45 AM
This is much better.  Now, If I understand the tactics, the I corps holds the center with the Pike as a solid line and the Xystophoroi  to protect their flanks and counter attack as needed.  the II Corps can hold one flank with the 4 Hoplite units also flanked by the Medium Cavalry which should prevent their flanks from being turned and a skirmisher to put out where needed.  III Corps basically roadblocks Knights, Cataphracts and Cavalry using the Elephant to intimidate the horses.  With 3 light and 2 mediums, it's basically an elephant delivery method to keep the oppositions Cavalry Honest.  Did I get that right?
Title: Re: List building
Post by: Michael on January 21, 2018, 10:42:38 AM
Did I get that right?

Indeed you did!

I usually run the elephant block like so: MI,E,MI with the LI lined up immediately ahead of the elephant. That way you can move all four units at once, with just one CP. The medium sword protect the elephant's flanks and the light infantry protects it from shooting (with protection 0, elephants are vulnerable to shooting). The light horse goes farther out on the flank to cause trouble as needed.

If you are feeling more aggressive, you can run a second elephant block (exactly the same set up) on the other flank, instead of the hoplites. That way, you'll be sure to get an elephant in the way of some enemy cavalry. I'm just not sure that suites your style as well as the two infantry corps version above.
Title: Re: List building
Post by: AvogadroTheMole on January 21, 2018, 08:18:07 PM
Just be careful with how much you seek out the clash against mounted with you elephant command. Msword, even with the elephant debuf, are still in real danger against many mounted types. That, plus many horse groups are wider than your command so overlaps and flanks will be a thing.

I would consider downgrading the elite pike to ordinary. If you are willing to accept mediocre pike (which is reasonable) you should probably be looking to embiggen the army and extending its width. Your pike/HFspear line will grind out a lot of success in a frontal battle. The best way to beat it is trying to break up the formation by avoiding combat, taking different angles, etc. One of the best ways to beat this is to have a wide enough line to offer very few gaps, even when you start to pull apart. The line Mike proposes is far from narrow...but still only a third of the board (plus a few mounted of varying use in truly extending the line). Plus, if the elite pike preclude taking the elite Mspear, maybe the later are preferable.
Title: Re: List building
Post by: bigchris on January 23, 2018, 09:50:24 AM
Pyrrhic 280-275 BC

I Corps
Ordinary General
Epirotes and Macedonians; Pikemen x3
Tarentine Phalangites; Pikemen, mediocre x3
Greek Hoplites; Heavy Spearmen, mediocre x2
Rhodian Slingers; Light Infantry Sling x2

II Corps
Ordinary General
Epirotes and Macedonians; Pikemen x3
Tarentine Phalangites; Pikemen, mediocre x3
Greek Hoplites; Heavy Spearmen, mediocre x2
Light Troops; Light Infantry Bow x2

III Corps
Brilliant General, Included
Xystophoroi; Heavy Cavalry Impact Elite x2
Greek Horsemen; Heavy Cavalry x2

24 units and 199 points.  I could downgrade the III Corps General to Ordinary and get a Fortified Camp (I noticed quite a few of those in my games at the tournament)

Matt, this was my first build.  Was this any better or worse?
Title: Re: List building
Post by: AvogadroTheMole on January 23, 2018, 04:55:11 PM
Pyrrhic 280-275 BC

I Corps
Ordinary General
Epirotes and Macedonians; Pikemen x3
Tarentine Phalangites; Pikemen, mediocre x3
Greek Hoplites; Heavy Spearmen, mediocre x2
Rhodian Slingers; Light Infantry Sling x2

II Corps
Ordinary General
Epirotes and Macedonians; Pikemen x3
Tarentine Phalangites; Pikemen, mediocre x3
Greek Hoplites; Heavy Spearmen, mediocre x2
Light Troops; Light Infantry Bow x2

III Corps
Brilliant General, Included
Xystophoroi; Heavy Cavalry Impact Elite x2
Greek Horsemen; Heavy Cavalry x2

24 units and 199 points.  I could downgrade the III Corps General to Ordinary and get a Fortified Camp (I noticed quite a few of those in my games at the tournament)

Matt, this was my first build.  Was this any better or worse?

The absence of any terrain troops concerns me. Nothing sucks more than a single cheap unit of MI getting into a piece of terrain next to your line of advance, either giving an immediate flank attack when you engage or keeping you from advancing to where you desire to go.
Title: Re: List building
Post by: bigchris on January 24, 2018, 12:38:48 PM
The absence of any terrain troops concerns me. Nothing sucks more than a single cheap unit of MI getting into a piece of terrain next to your line of advance, either giving an immediate flank attack when you engage or keeping you from advancing to where you desire to go.

So, How would you build this list then?
Title: Re: List building
Post by: AvogadroTheMole on January 25, 2018, 01:40:24 PM
Looking at the list, if you want to use the mediocre pike available through the Phyrrus in Italy option you have a mandatory Samnite Msword. That seems a good place to start. If converting the list to fit myself, the 1st question I ask is whether I want to win terrain or merely to contest it. The second, and closely related, is if I concentrate my MI or disperse it. Third question, also interrelated with 1 & 2, how much do I want to risk the MI being a target if there is no terrain to get into.

Lets assume I want to to be able to make bids to contest or win both flanks of my line (combining corps I & II). Lets also assume I want to emphasize winning the terrain and am not very worried about being caught in the open. You say the list is at 199, so I have 1 point to work with. The easiest approach is to drop 2x pike (1 ordinary and one mediocre, returning 11 & 9 pts, if memory serves). 12 pike is an enormous number and leaving it at 10 is still more than enough to be extremely impressive. With 21 pts we could take 3 MI swordsmen and call it a day. These would be a pretty good contesting force for terrain when concentrated. If the list has javelinmen (not having my book in front of me, I do not know, but Peltasts are very common in greek/hellenistic lists) then one of them might be nice, but reduces the chance of winning a terrain piece rather than just contesting it. Maybe deploy the two sword with one command and the jav with the other. Now you can contest both flanks, if not for very long or very effectively against determined attack. This is literally intended to be a holding force for the main line to get past and into the clash long enough to get a few rounds of dice before a decent enemy terrain command can move on the their flanks. These troops are expendable if their deaths contribute to the pike going unmolested for longer. They also do not want to charge in before they absolutely have to. I.e., they do not want to start their fight while they are a move or two ahead of the HI. That risks seeing them killed before the pike can pass and now you are back at step one.

Looking at further options, the brilliant general with just 4 horse, two of which are unable to evade, is probably an extravagance. With him your initiative bid is only a +1, so you can assume that you will lose initiative anyway. If we demote him to competent we free up 3 points. These can add impact to all three MI. However, getting a 4th MI would be great, since I said I wanted to contest both flanks and that lone sword/jav looks pretty lonely and outmatched. Right now our army count is +1 by trading 2 pike for 3 MI. I also am dubious of of all those mediocre Hspear. They are probably the bookends of your line, owing to their agility and speed (relative to pike, of course). They are the troops you want to be able to turn to wall off a flank threat if your MI fail (or the terrain forces the MI to hide elsewhere - say an open side of the board with some strong charging cavalry units out there). I think we want these to be ordinary. If we drop two, we can upgrade the other two to ordinary and leave 8 points. That is enough for another MI + 1 point. If we accept the general downgrade we have 4 MI sword + 4 points - enough for 4 upgrade to impact, or two upgrades to elite. Season to taste. You then have two decent terrain presences to shield the ends of your line. If the enemy only has one terrain command, one of yours will go down for sure. But you will have the opportunity to walk through the other and try to pry open their flank. If your line gets separated from the MI you now have a much more stalwart Hspear to turn and try and block off the easiest paths to flanks. Your battle line does shorten by 4 HI, but it is still 12 wide and its average quality has gone up a little. Plus there are plenty of circumstances where the MI are practically as good as the heavies at extending the line.

If you want to focus on having MI that are safer to stand out in the open and extend your line, then you will want to work in the Hypaspists (Mspear elite) for 9 pts each. The easiest path I see is dropping impact from all 4 MI and using those points to convert 2 swords over to them.
Title: Re: List building
Post by: AvogadroTheMole on January 25, 2018, 01:52:41 PM
Thinking a little more, my advice above arguably runs a little counter to what I posted the day before about maximising width of pointy sticks. If you really want to run a giant spear/pike line then you are probably better off selling out and minimising the cavalry in favour of more sticks (and maybe even more MI) and integrating what is left into the other commands (i.e., 3 commands of infantry with a horse here and there). That cav wing runs the risk of being a liability against a lot of opponents. It does not run away well, meaning you quickly either stand with everything or leave the xystophoroi to fight it out against more numbers...and standing is iffy as most aggressive horse groups will have more chargey horse than you do. You can make it work, but it will take some clever maneuvering, very early correct assessment of your prospects (once they can ZoC you with their next move regardless of your action, the jig is already up for your xystophoroi and it will either be good or bad), and a willingness to walk away from a clear mismatch.
Title: Re: List building
Post by: Michael on January 25, 2018, 08:49:23 PM
Maximized pointy sticks may work in many situations, but I don't think it's much fun to play. One lines them up and marches them forward. Roll a few dice and the game is over. I prefer a list with greater mobility, a smaller footprint, and more nuanced play style.

Ultimately, though, what works for you may be very different from what works for me or Matt. Fortunately, Pyrrhus is a flexible force with lots of options. I would recommend playing variations of the list until you find your style.
Title: Re: List building
Post by: bigchris on January 26, 2018, 01:32:42 PM
So, after giving your suggestions some thought, I rethought the list a bit.  Here is the latest rewrite;

I Corps
Competent Corps Commander
Pikemen x2
Pikemen, Mediocre x2
Medium Swordsmen, Impact x2
Light Infantry Bow x2

II Corps
Competent Corps Commander
Pikemen x2
Pikemen, Mediocre x2
Medium Swordsmen x2
Light Infantry Sling x2

III Corps
Competent Corps Commander (Included)
Heavy Cavalry, Impact, Elite x2
Heavy Cavalry x4
Light Cavalry Javelin x2

This comes to 200 points exactly. Now, these selections are all the mandatory ones (1-2,1-4, 4-12 for Pike with half needing to be mediocre) for the list.  None are 0-whatever.

My thought is that I and II Corps can mutually support each other while III Corps can either threaten a flank, or counter my opponents Cavalry.  Knights, and elephants will still be a problem for the Cavalry, but aren't they always going to be an issue?
Title: Re: List building
Post by: AvogadroTheMole on January 26, 2018, 01:54:31 PM
Actually, if you think you will be up against knights and elephants it is usually a good idea to try and out guess your opponent and stick the pointy sticks in front of them while deploying the cav elsewhere. Your cav may also be able to hold up against those in the sense that if you keep the impact horse well back, you can move the evade-capable horse up and then fade away. Always moving back up to make it hard for the scary things to turn in towards your foot.

"Maximized pointy sticks may work in many situations, but I don't think it's much fun to play. One lines them up and marches them forward. Roll a few dice and the game is over."

But it is fun when it is over and you won. :)
Actually, viewing them that way is a great way to lose lots of games. The deeper strategy and maneuver becomes even more critical and dominates the game against better opposition. Another issue is that the "secondary" troops become more critical to your success when dealing with an asymmetrical matchup. My lack of terrain capability is a big part of what doomed me to so many draws in the USTT. Particularly when my mounted was not up to the task of forcing the issue in my favour.

"Ultimately, though, what works for you may be very different from what works for me or Matt. Fortunately, Pyrrhus is a flexible force with lots of options. I would recommend playing variations of the list until you find your style."

This is the core of my message when I say the list is less important than the player. Ethan Zorick cares deeply about list minutia and extracting every last drop of optimization. But he already is a superlative player with a deep understanding of the rules, his play styles, and all the possible match ups and ways games can play out. Put another way, Tiger Woods cared a lot about the clubs and balls he used and dumped them if he felt they were not adequate after a short trial period. I could barely tell my pitching wedge from my friend's fancy new one that cost an arm and a leg.
Title: Re: List building
Post by: Michael on January 26, 2018, 08:19:06 PM
@Chris... That looks like a good list to start with. It should be resilient enough to give you a fighting chance in most games. Matt is right that pike are your best options versus elephants and knights. +2 versus all is great in those situations.

@Matt... I'm sure you're right. My perspective on pointy sticks is probably why I don't win with them.  :)
Title: Re: List building
Post by: bigchris on January 29, 2018, 09:25:17 AM
So after yesterdays conversations I looked over the Later Samurai list (not much better really).  So I went back to the Feudal and started to think more about terrain and strategy.  Long and short, the Samurai definitely need dense terrain.  But if I pick the max amount, unless I have a strategist, I won't be able to affect any of the terrain.  3 of 4 gives me one move, but is it worth it of an opponent takes the minimum and gets two rolls (Though I do wonder why it doesn't go the other way, minimal amount of terrain 1 roll, 3-4 pieces two rolls).  Planning on using terrain only works if it is placed where it can be used effectively. So, back to the list.

I Corps
Brilliant Corps Commander (Included)
Heavy Cavalry Bow x6
Light Cavalry Bow x2

II Corps
Competent Corps Commander
Heavy Swordsmen 2HW x2
Medium Swordsmen 2HW x4
Medium Swordsmen Bow x2

III Corps
Ordinary Corps Commander
Medium Swordsmen Bow x2
Medium Spearmen Mediocre x4

Fortifications x6

My thought is to plant the Heavier Infantry Corps behind the fortifications with the 2 Bow Units to guard flanks, use the Lighter infantry Corps for Ambush or just stick them in rough terrain to maximize their potential, and use the Cavalry Corps with the light Cavalry to threaten flanks or possibly draw knights away from the main fight.  Still a squishy list, but if I pay it more defensively, my hope is that the fortifications and better use of terrain might mitigate the shortcomings.  I know flanks will be an issue, but I think this might offer a better chance against straight on rushes by elephants, Knights, Cataphracts and anything else that would normally run over the mediums on open ground.
Title: Re: List building
Post by: AvogadroTheMole on January 31, 2018, 01:13:34 PM
I think you are solving the wrong problems and substituting them with greater dilemmas. ADG is a game of maneuver. The maneuver may be many layered and subtle, but a major theme is forcing your opponent to react to your choices. As has been noted by many new converts, options for reaction are often limited and especially so when the enemy is already near. By hiding behind static fortifications you cede all real initiative to your opponent and the advantages that come with forcing their hand. Sure, the bonuses might make a frontal attack suicide. But who is going to be foolish enough to commit suicide by attacking your defenses frontally? There are no objectives the enemy is forced to blindly come after, like in FoW. Attacker/defender are concepts that only apply to setup rules. This plan takes your most powerful corps and renders it inert, giving the opponent infinite time to reorient their attack to concentrate on the other corps. If you set up in the center of the board, they can choose which wing they favour and concentrate 2 corps on it with near impunity. Sure, your horse can evade away. But pinning them in a corner will be pretty easy for double their number and they will eventually die or run off the table. Both now leave a giant hanging flank for the center corps. They can then either abandon their fortifications to turn to meet the threat, negating all the points spent on the defenses, or receive flank attacks...for which forts offer no bonuses (only when combat is through the fort). If you set up on a wing, that is even worse. That makes it dangerously easy to concentrate all 3 corps onto 1 or both of your others while screening off you infantry if it does come out to play. The ease in which the other guy might get to break your army without fighting any of your main corps would be a huge problem.

The only way I see large-scale fortifications working out for a player is by going all-in on it. One of the HMGS regulars, I call him Acropolis Al, has a propensity for playing this way. But he is wholly commited to it. Multiple artillery pieces (medium & hvy) and a number of bowmen/crossbowmen. These are behind the forts, which are often spaced out. In between he takes lots of tough HI. And then he camps in a corner, preferably with his back to a coast. He is daring his opponent to come in and try him. The only way he can put any damage out is if his opponent attacks. If he faces opponents with patience they will have all the time in the world to set up their attack exactly as they want it. And if they push in and get repulsed...well he is probably in no position to pursue them and force a break on them. He can only win if they attack hard enough and long enough for them to feed enough into his grinder. And if he does not get his coast, he is potentially very vulnerable to a flank march. Winning tournaments is almost completely out of the question since he will struggle to get outright wins. He also risks facing an opponent wholly unequipped to play his style of game who might (rightly) refuse to come in and instead sits across the table playing on his phone for 2+ hours. Boring for all, but a decision he made at army design.
Title: Re: List building
Post by: bigchris on January 31, 2018, 05:34:43 PM
Well, there‚Äôs not alot of other options to use that 6 points for.  Upgrade 3 units to elite, fortify my camp, I can add one more light cavalry unit, a single Light Artillery unit or a single stampeding herd (scythed chariot)
Title: Re: List building
Post by: bigchris on February 02, 2018, 09:20:42 AM
Matt, I think what I need is for you to look at the list (#210 Feudal Samurai)  and see how YOU would build an army from it. I want to see what a fresher set of eyes would choose and how you would play it.
Title: Re: List building
Post by: bigchris on February 19, 2018, 10:21:41 AM
In my continuing interest in looking at other lists, no not Spartacus much as I would love to, so I have tinkered with a list for the Mycenaens.

I Corps Brilliant General (Included)
Medium Swordsmen, Impact, Armor, Elite x2
Heavy Spearmen x4
Light Chariot x3
Light Infantry Javelin x1

II Corps Competent General (Included)
Heavy Spearmen x4
Light Chariot x3
Light Infantry Javelin x1

III Corps Competent General (Included)
Heavy Spearmen x4
Light Chariot, Elite x1
Light Chariot x2
Light Infantry Javelin x1

26 units @ 200 points

The two smaller corps I'm thinking of dropping the generals to ordinary. There's the usual, Pikemen, Knights, Cataphracts, Elephants schtick, but I'm thinking that's just a fact of life for any list. 
Title: Re: List building
Post by: AvogadroTheMole on February 19, 2018, 02:09:14 PM
There is a bad matchup for every list. You cannot cram an adequate hard-counter to every troop type into a single list. And if you find a way you will quickly find you do not have enough to deal with the numbers of that troop type you opponent has if they focus on that type.

Something rubs me the wrong way about this list. I think it might be the list itself. Light chariots are medium cavalry bow with the ability to shoot out the rear facing. I am not sure how I feel about having so many distributed so thinly. Then again, this is very different from any list I have ever fielded so maybe I know nothing of its potential.
Title: Re: List building
Post by: bigchris on February 19, 2018, 03:50:22 PM
The Mycenaen light chariots don't have bows, so they're just considered Medium Cav.  and can function the same.  I had thought about grouping them all together as a Corps of 8 Light chariots and 1 Elite light chariot, but I'm not sure if that's more ideal than having them providing flank support in each corps.  This way, each Corps has a fast unit of 3 that can quickly threaten flanks or move around to cover their own flanks.  The corps would be arrayed like this:

I Corps:
             LI


          HIMIMIHI
            CvCvCv

II Corps:
             LI


          HIHIHIHI
             Gen
          CvCvCv

III Corps:
           LI

         HIHIHIHI
            Gen
          CvCvCv

Depending on how I would deploy the Army, the I Corps is likely to be a focus with the 2 MI in it (Who wouldn't want to crush Achilles?).  I would try and draw an opponent in to try and engage the I Corps, and use it's three chariots to threaten or charge  and turn a flank.  The Other two Corps can either hold flanks (Using the chariots and LI to screen out further), pile in to support I Corps or  Combine to push across the board and try and break an opponents corps.