Had a great first go at a siege battle the other night. Great fun and presented lots of new elements to consider during the game. A couple of issues arose which we played through on the night but thought we could ask to see how others interpret them:
1. When scaling ladders are placed, and are blocked by defending archer stands, are the archers on the walls still able to fire as usual during the missile phases, or are they considered to be too busy blocking the ladders to do anything else?
2. If the attackers are driven from the base of scaling ladders, and defenders are in contact with the ladders from the walls, are the ladders considered destroyed?
3. During a siege battle, are usual field artillery pieces ignored with both attackers and defenders only able to choose from the siege artillery options? In our game we had the defenders able to choose a multi barrel gun from their field army list, which was then placed on the wall, but it didn't quite feel right as it seemed a cheap option to tool up the defenders! Also unsure if wooden screens, etc that provide A2 protection, is also effective against FIELD artillery pieces or not?
Many thanks, we will replaying the battle this week and could post it up as a battle report if it works out well,
1. Once a ladder is in place and an attacking stand is attempting to scale the wall, shooters can only defend and cannot shoot. As you say they have enough do!
2. Ladders cannot be destroyed as such, or rather they can easily be replaced ready for the next attempt at scaling the wall.
3. This is an interesting situation which has already created quite a bit of discussion.We play that artillery pieces can only be placed on towers and not on walls. High trajectory defensive weapons such as ballista, bombards, trebuchets etc can fire over walls from hexes within the fortress. The details for defensive artillery shooting can be found on pages 14&15 of the H&H Siege and assault supplement.
I look forward to reading your game report.
Sorry about the delayed reply, I've been away do to family matters.
The pavisses do not give A2 protection or indeed any protection from gunpowder weapons. The wooden screens are 'hard targets' therefore give full protection from all hand-held missile weapons including hand guns. Missile troops hiding behind these can only have their shooting suppressed. The wooden screens do not give any protection from artillery shooting. We play that they are destroyed if the occupying unit is eliminated or forced to flee by artillery shooting.
One further area we've had debates over, and played a couple of variations on, is fighting through breaches and gateways. We've experimented with calling them linear obstacles once breached to allow the defenders the advantage of not having to follow up due to a successful combat resolution. This has been worked well for the defence being able to set up a deadly welcoming party for attackers coming through- however, it has proven to be also nigh on impossible for the attackers to make any headway into the fortress when faced with such a situation. The other way we've tried is to count the breach or gateway as a regular combat, with the usual follow up rules in place. This had the effect of making the combat deadly for both sides as units got drawn out when following up- much to the defenders detriment as the limited garrison were pulled into the heart of the combat.
How have others found this? Does anyone have any thoughts about what works well? I was thinking of playing it as a regular combat- with normal follow up rules- unless the defender specifically erected further barricades (such as wagons, etc) to show a clearly defined linear defensive line to negate the follow up,
We've been fighting a number of Romano-British v Saxon games recently with the Saxons assaulting the British earth work fortifications. There has usually been a major relief force as part of each scenario which adds more urgency and complexity to the assaults. The fighting through breached entrance gates - the 'pull and push' effect has been very important feature of each game and I think really adds a fluidity to any assault scenario. I think the idea of the 'linear obstacle' status for breached gateways is interesting and works well if an improvised barrier can be constructed by the defenders - this could be up-turned wagons, wooden stakes etc. On balance, the pulling of defenders out of the fortress through compulsory follow-ups is very much in favour with our group. It certainly encourages tactical thinking in regards to which unit to thrust into the breach! And also makes for planning carefully which units might be sacrificed for the cause!