Do I understand it right, that artillerylimbers were moved by civilians? I think that I read about it that the limbers stayed at the corner of the battlefield when the battle commenced because the civilians didn't entered the battlefield. Is that right? I think, that was no problem as the light artillery could not move faster than the infantry of their brigade. If you don't want to bring light artillery like 3-lb.-guns on a hill, it's no problem for a crew of 7-8 men. I helped to move a French 4pdr. (gibreauval-system) on a hilltop some weeks ago. We had 7 or 8 artillerymen and 4 grenadiers for the job. The gun with limber had more than 1,2 german tons.
I'm thinking about the movement of guns. Actually most heavy guns (12- or 16 pounders) were not moved at all during a battle.
I'm not sure, perhaps it would be the best solution to say that a player can limber/unlimber only for one time during battle or the limbers have to stay in a distance from the enemy.
If the guns were not moved much - this would explain too why very often I read about the surprisingly strong effect of 2 pieces of artillery, while other artillery are described often as completely useless (maybe only Standing around, because no general gave an order to move or no infrantry soldiers at Hand to move the guns?).
I've no idea if the artillery in the syw was maybe a lot more mobile than during the WAS.
My own reading convinced me that guns were commonly moved to different firing positions during SYW actions. Leuthen is an obvious example. Certainly, time spent moving guns around during a game is time wasted, and getting them into a good firing position at the beginning of the battle, that they can maintain throughout, is good tactics.
It is quite true that the limbers and wagons were often manned by civilians and this could be a problem, but the civilians were usually under military supervision of some kind - i.e. artillerists or soldiers specifically assigned to the task of keeping the civilians under control.
Developments in improving the mobility of artillery were continuous during the 18th century. Certainly, there was a very significant improvement between the WSS and the SYW, although less so between the WAS and the SYW.
The progression in manning the artillery of most Eurpean nations seems to have been similar but not to identical time scales. In the WSS the number of military personnel were spread thinly across the artilllery train and concentrated for the task in hand, ether manning the field artillery in battle or manning the siege artillery for attacking fortresses. The arsenals produced guns, carriages, limbers and harness. Contractors supplied horses and handlers to move the guns and support vehicles around. By the WAS the numbers of permanent artillerymen were increasing and there had been changes and some advances in artillery "material" but the transport still fell to the civilian contractors. By the 7YW the progression in permanent militarised artillery personnel and material had been further improved but the civilian contractor still moved the material around. By the French Revolution the French artillery was still using civilian contractors but some nations were moving towards militarised artillery transport. The main motor for this change appears to have been, arguably, horse artillery. The level of expertise necessary to have this type of artillery work effectively required fully militarised crews, including those driving the limbers and support wagons. Other than that I suspect that the levels of supervision in individual armies played a part in the 7YW. In the Prussian army, where stepping more than a foot away from your assigned position in the rank meant that a Sergeant was required to kill you with his sword, I suspect contractors were likely to to do what they were told while there were sufficient "supervisers" around to enforce orders. That would vary, even in the Prussian army. While I have limited the mobility of artillery in the WSS amendments it is worth noting that at Malplaquet 64 guns of the French artillery of the right wing were succesfully withdrawn towards the end of the battle. Notable because it was so unusual but demonstrating that it could be done.
"... Normal practice was that during the march they [the guns] would be hauled by civilian contractors and handed over to the Military when they deployed for battle. In combat, the guns would be manhandled by infantrymen and commanded by artillerymen. At Fontenoy, the sodden sloping ground and muddied ploughed fields would require them to be dragged using rope and tackle; no doubt this gave rise to the later belief that Cumberland's civilian contractors had deserted the army upon receipt of their pay - another ground later given to the failure of the Allied plan - yet, as civilians, they were not required to take Position in or near the firing line, rather instead they were to remain in the rear of the army until their services were required again." (M.McNally: "Fontenoy 1745 - Cumberlands bloody defeat" Osprey, 2017 p. 55)
I have the impression that McNally is right. The fact that the guns were manhandled by infantry explains why so often guns were captured by ordinary soldiers. Additionaly there was another problem, I learned about when I read about the Wasunger Krieg. Sometimes the light artillerypieces were handled by infantry who had no connection with the guns. They got them occassionaly. It's no surprise that when the Saxe-Gotha garrison of Wasungen fled back to the border, the ordinary soldiers led the precious "Geschwindstücke" stuck in the mud of the road. I think that they believed that it was not their job to rescue the guns. Later in this action the "Geschwindstücke" were loaded by elite grenadiers.
Es marschierten drei Regimenter wohl über den Rhein...