Hello Kieth I have a question. Having just played three games this past weekend a few rule interpretations came up. You say on page 19 that units may not wheel towards the enemy when that enemy is within 20cm. However the diagram on page 33 A complex melee appears to show a cavalry unit with a double move wheel onto a flank of Red Unit A ignoring this rule. I have not located the text yet but within the rules it seems to imply that this move is okay. Here are my questions.
Does a friendly unit block this 20cm enemy rule for units that are behind it? Would you allow cavalry with a double move to get around this situation? It would seem from your explanation on page 33 for the A Complex Melee Example Diagram that if the enemy unit is contacted by a unit, a second friendly unit can perform the double move?
This situation came up with a cavalry unit with a double move attempting to wheel left and strike an enemy cavalry unit that had struck an infantry unit.
My feeling is this. Dr. Duffy added his two cents and commented that cavalry from all nations where free to act or not on there own. They were the battle winners of the 18th century. He feels this situation is very underrepresented in miniature rules. So a Paulie rule will allow cavalry units to ingnore this 20cm to the enmy rule. What is your take on this?
Thanks for bringing this up Paul. My rule on p.19 was intended to refer to movement within the front sector of an enemy unit - I didn't think it appropriate for units to expose their flank to an enemy close by. Note the rule specifies wheels of greater than 45 degrees. The stipulation that this referred to the front of enemy units should have been specified clearly in the rule - my mistake.
Thus, a unit may wheel into the flank of an enemy either by starting mostly in the flank sector, or by using a double move to move into the flank sector with the first move then wheeling into the flank on the second move.
It would certainly be reasonable to allow wheeling (or movement to the flank) if behind a friendly unit, though I would leave this to player preference. If the enemy unit is already contacted to its front, as in your example, then I agree that the rule should not be applied.
Keith, above you mentioned that wheeling is limited to 45 degrees when within 20cm of your enemy and only when in the front quarter of said enemy. Does this also apply to voluntary interpenatration and moving into your unit's flank quarter, i.e., that these restrictions only happen when your unit is within 20cm AND in the front quarter zone of any enemy?
Last Edit: Apr 7, 2016 15:14:14 GMT by ivorj: Voluntary typed in front of penetration.
A good point Ivor. I did not make the rules clear on this issue, so to be honest I am working in retrospect and with hindsight - in other words, I reckon players are free to make their own judgement.
But fundamentally these rules were made in the context of being in the enemy's frontal zone, where complex drill movements would be dangerous to carry out and would likely to lead to disorder and high casualties. In this position, I reckon a unit would be thinking of charging forward, retreating directly away, or engaging in a firefight. But when a unit is to the flank or rear of the enemy the danger would be significantly less. In this context I think it would be fair to allow the moves you mention to take place within 20cm.
However, I remain open to discussion and suggestions on this aspect of the rules.
Keith. I'm with you regarding your reasoning! I think that the restrictions would be in effect if one's unit is in the frontal quarter zone of any enemy. Thus, an enemy 2nd line behind their 1st line would be a good tactic for potentially restricting (wheeling 45 degrees or less, no voluntary interpenatrations, etc.) any breakthroughs by one's units.
Hi Does the 20cms rule prevent anything else please? From what I have read: It stops wheeling more than 45 degrees. You cannot interpenetrate a unit if that unit is with 20cms of a facing enemy (does the enemy have to have that unit in its forward arc? I.e can you do this if the enemy presents it flank?))
Does the 20cm rule have impact on formation changes?
Hi Smirnoff. See above. The '20cm rule' is there to prevent units performing certain manoeuvres close to the enemy, as these manoeuvres would disorder the moving unit and expose it to firing and/or charges to which it couldn't respond effectively.
The clarified rule applies to manoeuvres within 20cm of an enemy unit and within their front sector. It applies to:
Moves to the flank Wheels of more than 45 degrees Interpenetration by friendly units
The above are however OK if the moving unit is mostly (i.e. more than half) within the flank or rear sector of the enemy unit.
I do not apply the rule to formation changes. This may appear counter-intuitive, but any such changes would in practice most likely be designed to make the moving unit less vulnerable - i.e. changing from column to line, turning to face when charged.
Hi Keith This situation occurred in a recent game:- A unit of Croats are occupying a hill , close to the edge of the table. They are approached by a Unit of Prussian grenadiers (with a second following. There is a close range firefight- resulting in the Croats taking hits. The following turn the Austrian commander rolls a 6 for the Croats, getting 2 moves. The Croats use this to move round the flank of the grenadiers- illegal if they just move sideways, however they pay no penalty to turn into column, march round the flank (thus moving ahead, not sideways), through the 2" gap between the Grenadiers and the edge of the table, and then turn back, giving them an enfilading volley. This seemed to me to be militarily unlikely. Could you comment?
As far as I can tell the move is legal. I would comment that the grenadiers should have the option to turn and face the Croats in their own movement phase before the Croats were entitled to fire. Another option to make the whole thing more palatable would be to allow the grenadiers to use crossing fire as the Croats move across their front, ending out of their firing zone.
Also remember these are light infantry with a lucky throw, so perhaps they are entitled to cause the grenadiers a bit of a problem.
As the general in charge of the said Grenadier brigade during the said game, I must admit that at one point I thought I was watching an episode of Scooby Do and not a SYW game!
Could you clarify why this move was legal, Keith? As you said in an earlier post above,
"The above are however OK if the moving unit is mostly (i.e. more than half) within the flank or rear sector of the enemy unit."
In this case, the Croats started out facing the Grenadiers, totally within the frontal arc of the Grenadiers and within 20cm of the Grenadiers.
So, although the Croats had two moves, was it not illegal for them to move to the flank in their first move .... ?
It seems to me that the amendment rule should itself be clarified. As it stands, it suggests that mostly refers to the movement of the unit and not the position of the unit (which the above statement now clarifies)
As it stands, the amendment reads, "Movement to the flank, wheels of more than 45° or voluntary interpenetration of a friendly unit can occur within 20cm of the enemy provided the movement takes place mostly in the flank or rear sectors of the enemy unit."
I suggest - "Movement to the flank, wheels of more than 45° or voluntary interpenetration of a friendly unit can occur within 20cm of the enemy provided the moving unit is mostly (i.e. more than half) within the flank or rear sector of the enemy unit and movement takes place in the flank or rear sectors of the enemy unit."
Westmarcher, thanks for your input. The meaning of the proximity rule is as you originally supposed, not in line with your proposed amendment. The move is legal as, by turning into column and moving off into what is now their front sector, the Croats aren't moving to their flank. The rule as written is supposed to avoid the offending unit moving sideways but still facing front (and hence still being able to fire). Under normal circumstances, changing into column and moving off would be of no advantage to the moving unit, and in some circumstances would be suicidal.
As for your episode of Scooby Do: assuming I understand the situation correctly, I stick to my comment above. I don't believe that it was somehow impossible for a unit of well-trained and good quality light troops, given a fortunate die roll, to out-manouevre a unit of grenadiers and end up on their flank. Who knows what things might have been like in 'real-life', with clouds of smoke around, deafening noise and confused officers and NCOs.
Said grenadiers could also have turned to face in their own movement phase, as they are Prussian, unless of course they had already moved. In which case, c'est la guerre, IMHO.
However, if you disagree, that is of course fine. I would simply add formation changes to the list of things forbidden within 20cm of the enemy. Why this is not so at the moment is explained in the concluding sentence in my reply to Smirnoff. However, you will note that such an addition would have prevented your grenadiers turning to face the Croats if they had the chance. Perhaps simply forbidding the specific actions of the Croats in all cases would be better.
It is only right to question the rules when you are not happy - thanks again.