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France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

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Jason
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Re: France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

Post by Jason on Fri Jan 25, 2013 1:47 pm

I must agree with Ardagor, in my brief tenure as France, my concern was over the lack of drilling among the Lancers, esp given their lack of history in the French army.

And I can say this now, that was nothing compared to the sickness levels in the French field armies, most were SL6 and higher, even King Louis as an individual was SL6 at the start! If Austria had attacked when I was just coming into position, they could have walked straight through the French armies as I doubt they would have been able to fight back. I spent most of my time ordering my military to rest and recover to get them able to act offensively. Typically, I had managed to get enough of an improvement in the armies to make them fit for purpose just by the time I decided to walk away...

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Re: France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

Post by J Flower on Fri Jan 25, 2013 4:34 pm

Maybe the lancers poor showing is also an historical one, as they should be from Eastern Europe at in the era in question.
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Re: France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

Post by Ardagor on Fri Jan 25, 2013 6:31 pm

Ouch, SL6 is certainly bad. I try to keep it as low as possible but one time I sent my troops to the attack the enemy without grain supply, they where at SL4 before reaching the battle which they won but I was quite nervous about it.
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Re: France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

Post by Jason on Fri Jan 25, 2013 9:17 pm

I'm the same regarding SL...oh and bung on top of excessive SL, some mutinous units...
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Re: France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

Post by Regor on Sat Jan 26, 2013 10:19 pm

I work on SL5 as standard.... And as for the lancers you want to try camelry! Suspect

Mind you I'm beginning to have a sneaky admiration for the Dutch in G7
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Re: France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

Post by Jason on Sat Jan 26, 2013 11:33 pm

Mind you, according to the rules update regarding sickness levels

SL1-2: usual levels of sickness often encountered by forces in transit or in the field and not too worrisome. Units on campaign will often be at these levels.
SL3: also a usual level, but somewhat more serious in that performance in action is likely to suffer, as is the watchfulness of sentries.
SL4-5: sickness has reached serious levels and is severely impacting the ability of the force to function.
SL6-8: the force remains intact, but is pretty useless militarily, while recovery is still possible so are mass desertions, mutiny and even rebellion!
SL9+: oh dear, the force is in a real mess, desertions are probable rather than possible and even moving will be problematic!

So even at SL5 you are in trouble Regor...now where are your armies... Wink

But seriously, as France in G7, with armeis and fleets at SL6, 7, 8, 9 and 10...perhaps my policy of not launching allout assaults makes sense

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Re: France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

Post by Stuart Bailey on Sun Jan 27, 2013 1:26 am

J Flower wrote:Problem for Cavalry is the faster they move the harder the formation is to control.

Cavalry without lances may seem at a disadvantage, however it needs a lot of training to make a good lancer. It could be viewed more as a terror weapon than anything else once the featr of the lancer is overcome, get to close quaters & the advantage of the length of the lance is usless, indeed it gets in the way.

Its interesting to note that Cromwell, Marlborough, Eugene and most French Napoleonic Cavalry leaders favoured attacking at the Trot which allows cavalry to keep perfect order and ride in closer formation....basically counting on weight and a look of solid determination to break the foe. While other equally able commanders like Charles of Sweden, The Great Conde, Frederick the Great & Nadir Shah favoured the gallop.

From this I doubt if one Speed is better than the other. As a rule it seems that if Cavalry faced with a charge at the gallop flinched they were in trouble. But if the kept order and continued to advance in a steady manner the more spaced out gallopers were likely to pull up and suffer a disadvantage.

The same can also be said about the Lance V Sword debate. If the Cavalry with the Swords can keep going and close on the Lancers they seem to have the advantage, but flinch and they are done for. Before anyone shouts that that their high morale cavalry got savaged by Winged Hussars I think it needs to be said that many of the best Lancers of the period only used the Lance in the first charge and then dropped it (or better still left it in a foe) before drawing sword.

Thus I dont think the recent defeat of 42 Squadrons of Lancers by 32 Squadrons of Spanish-Flanders Cuirassiers can be taken as evidence that the sword has the edge over the lance or its better to gallop than trot. My view is that other factors as well as random "luck of the dice" need to be taken into account esp:

1) What were the respective SL on both sides? The French had been fighting (and thrown back roughly!) the month before so its possible that their SL may have been higher even though the cavalry had not done very much.

2) As has already been mentioned the French are not born Lancers and most of their Lancer units seem fairly new and not that well drilled. In contrast their opponents seem to have been a "natral" type for their home area and very well drilled. One wonders if French Lancers with their stupid hats and unfamiliar equipment consider themselves inferior to the Mason du Roi & French Cuirassiers. While their opponents consider themselves as the best of the Spanish-Flanders Cavalry. In complete contrast in Polish, Ottoman & Moghul armies the Lancer Units tend to view themselves as the best and look down on the surrounding masses of skirmishing horse archers, camels etc, etc

3) Honour - does the higher honour of one side impact on the battle? Under the old rules such a lot of French troops & ships were in action in Nov 1706 that not all of them would have fought to max effect. Not sure how this plays out under the new rules but I suspect that all the chops and changes in the French Govt and policy must be getting the French Army down. In contrast the Armies of Charles Hapsburg seem like a fairly happy bunch, they may be a untidy bunch compared to the French but reports to date seem to show them either as tough or as being well equiped.

4) Finally Vendomes army was pointing one way and marching away from Chalons when it was attacked in a fairly simple and brutal fashion. In Glori du Roi being caught doing anything fancy by a simple, direct and brutal attack always seems to be bad news.

The good news for the French is that Vendome does seem to have avoided attempts to pin him in his original position and has managed to pull many of the Hapsburg "covering" forces awat to the East. This would seem to leave only the Dutch covering the siege Army which may mean its now possible to break Big Lou out.

This may look like 1st rate French generalship on paper but it probably does not look like this to Vendomes troops .....being used as bait is probably not much fun! Esp when all they have to reply to the massed Hapsburg Artillery ripping them to bits is a few pop guns. Odds of 37 - 0 in field gun battaries is just brutal!

3)
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Re: France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

Post by Basileus on Sun Jan 27, 2013 10:56 am

I would agree with all that Stuart has said above. My additional comments which other people have picked up elsewhere is about the sickness levels and drilling.

On the sickness levels - I have found this to be the biggest determining factor on losses in the Austrian campaigns against France. This has caused my major troop losses and been the biggest determining factor in tactical situations. Players may recall that some of my cavalry ran away at the battles around Besancon - and I think that was due to very high sickness list levels. Around 8 or 7 if I recall. What the game is very good at (amongst everything else) is that there are times when you are prepared to take, or have to take the risk on sick lists for strategic reasons. So the judgement for me, was to keep an army in the field outside of Besancon, to protect the city whilst new walls were being built. So I probably lost about 20 units through sickness and being a bit feeble when it came to fighting in order to retain Besancon which proved to be the doorway to France. There is also the question of what does the sick list do to the horses of the cavalry, knackerd out old horses arent going to be of much good in a cavalry fight.

The other main thing is that the main French player (RKLF)was very much a player of principle. And I think elsewhere in this forum he has said he doesnt believe in drilling troops. So the French army is beautifully uniformed in great detail, but not drilled. Kudos to RKLF for that but it may have put French troops at a disadvantage in a stand up fight. Some of the battle reports has said that Austrian line infantry is getting three shots off before the French have even started reloading (that was with the French using rifles rather than muskets, and rifles are far harder to load). It must make a difference. But very French - beautiful uniforms but not very good at loading the muskets. However, it has to be said that the French army has achieved major successes in this game, such as its campaugn in England, but I suspect that this was more the strategic planning which was a success rather than the tactical preperation.
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Re: France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

Post by Regor on Sun Jan 27, 2013 11:43 am

Hmm, I think the rifle concept (almost 100 yrs before Napoleon who refused them) is a clue to their use on the battlefield. Rifles are useful in say an AWI scenario but not in line of battle - the light infantry doctrine of the time does not allow it. But drilling infantry and then choosing 2 lines might be more effective. I don't know and would like one of you to test it out.

But the French campaign in England in my memory was a major power at the peak of its efficiency facing down an en-mired country whose administrations had been ineffective for the previous 3 years at least. It was really no contest. Anyone remember Marlborough and the Battle of Staines?

I think we need to look back into history for the effectiveness of kit and tactics - the rules will support this as they do the simple and blunt against the complicated....

(Just ask a friend to read your orders and then move your forces to see what I mean - you don't even need to be in a fighting situation.)

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Re: France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

Post by Stuart Bailey on Sun Jan 27, 2013 1:00 pm

Ref the above comments from Basileus I suspect a high SL has a worse affect on Cavalry than it does on Infantry/Artillery. SL5 plus Infantry for instance may be sod all use in an attack but worn out exhusted troops may still fight in a heroic manner in defence. Cavalry on the same sickness level are useless apart from using the horses for food for the army........and this aways seems to really upset cavalry for some reason.

Ref drill and G7 French Army I dont think RKL had objections to Cavalry Drill but he wanted the French Infantry to use their historic cold steel attack doctrine rather than shooting and believed that if you drill Infantry this means "musket drill" and risked turning his heroic charging French Infantry into mindless Habsburg clones fixated on firepower and how many shots they could get off per minute.

This view is in line with C18 French military thinking which which rubbished the effect of musket fire and argued that one reason for French Defeats in the WSS was due to fighting on the defensive and not following their own attack doctrine. Which they deemed better suited to the natural urges of French Infantry. Battles in Spain & Italy were the French were not forced onto the defensive by Churchill or Eugine and were able to attack as they see fit do provide some evidence to back up this viewpoint.

I suspect that RKL actually did his usual trick of taking a perfectly reasonable idea and pushing it breaking point. Many Swedish & Ottoman players also use a cold steel attack doctrine......fire once or twice and dash through the smoke to see if they like it up them! But these players DO drill their troops in their favoured fighting style. This does not seem to have turned the Swedes or the Sultans best tribal foot into German clones firing five shots a minute. Rather what it means is if they can close and fight it out man to man with flashing swords etc you troops trained in a different way are going to suffer.

Like the Lance V Sword debate I dont think any particular side to this Infantry debate is correct. But if anyone is thinking of taking over France in G7 you probably need to be aware that the French Army was designed & built to be used in a very particular way and if you dont like that way you are probably going to have to rebuild it.

Basically the G7 French are designed for a player who wants to outthink and outmarch his opposition then hit them hard and fast with superior numbers and cold steel. The theory being you break them with waves of infantry attacks then ride them down as they run away.

The lack of lumbering artillery in French field armies (it all seems to be in seperate trains mostly used for siege work etc)means they have abandoned defensive solidity on the alter of speed and superior generalship grabbing grabbing control of the campaign.

This worked great in England but when things go wrong such as the Army of the Nord being forced to fight on the defensive without any real artillery it can get messy.

Basically it may help to think of the G7 French Army as a Sports Car - in many ways its the best but it probably is not going to win a head on crash with a BMW dumper truck.
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Re: France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

Post by Ardagor on Mon Jan 28, 2013 1:08 pm

From the rules:

"Drill is not done as a specific task such as shooting or riding, but is a general improvement in the capabilities of the unit in question."

Also from the connection between drill & regulations

"In other words, the better drilled your army or navy is, the more likely they are to be able to follow the regulations properly."

So, Louis could safely have drilled his army without fear of it turning into a force based on firepower alone, it would just be better at following the regulations.

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Re: France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

Post by Regor on Mon Jan 28, 2013 3:52 pm

Gents this is really useful. Thank you. But Jason no clues, you have to find the boys (better than the Wheres Wally world hide and seek champions 1701, 2,3, 4 ,5 and 6)

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Re: France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

Post by Stuart Bailey on Mon Jan 28, 2013 11:24 pm

Ardagor wrote:From the rules:

"Drill is not done as a specific task such as shooting or riding, but is a general improvement in the capabilities of the unit in question."

Also from the connection between drill & regulations

"In other words, the better drilled your army or navy is, the more likely they are to be able to follow the regulations properly."

So, Louis could safely have drilled his army without fear of it turning into a force based on firepower alone, it would just be better at following the regulations.


I believe that this was pointed out to RKL but once the idea was fixed small matters like what the rules actually say did not matter.

He is had exactly the same view over the treaty of Ghent......said treaty signed in 1701 had a five year non aggresion clause built into it. Most people reading it would draw the obvious conclusion that the clause expired in 1706. Not RKL because other parts of the agreement specify a dowry being paid off by stage payments way past 1706 RKL view was that this also extended the non aggression clause.

Oddly enough Spain marched to help his dear old Dad in 1706.......I really miss RKL because I would have enjoyed hearing the screams of French Diplomatic outrage. Probably only a little less in volume than the ones we would have got after the Dutch launched a under hand raid on his beloved Fleet. Dont these Dutch cads know that each of those ships have seperate names & paint jobs? And those Southampton dockyard types will never get it right.
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Re: France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

Post by Jason on Tue Jan 29, 2013 11:53 am

The question for me is what will happen to France? Could it implode, along the same lines as England, and end in civil war?

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Re: France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

Post by Guest on Tue Jan 29, 2013 12:27 pm

Jason wrote:And now we have French renegade troops on the loose (a new development?) as well as mass desertions and two more major towns falling, I wonder how much longer France can hold out...

During the time I've had cause to be directly interested, I've found that the reason for the ongoing 'civil war' in England is less Richard's antics and more those of an 'interested party'. A lot of this can be figured out from press articles if you read between the lines. Quite an unfriendly approach to playing the game (in my own opinion), but we all have our different styles and I respect that.

Certainly not something I hope will happen to whoever is brave enough to take on the challenge of playing France. It's very easy to make things difficult for another player, but not very sporting. I know we all have our own plans for France (some want land, some want reparation and some (ahem Embarassed )want to ensure France can never again muster an army/navy capable of causing strife to England by seeing France ripped to pieces. But I personally think we ought to support the new player (if/when it happens). To that end, I hope the peace talks proceed and resolution is agreed before a new player joins, rather than after.
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Re: France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

Post by Basileus on Wed Jan 30, 2013 11:39 pm

Have to say very amused at the description of my army as a BMW Dumper Truck. For me, the reason why it is so funny is because it is true. No well thought out uniforms and historically researched detail. Just solid brute force. RKLF did put a lot of effort into a stylistically detailed army.

Next turn may produce some more interesting entertainment for those watching the game.

I would have thought that after the war, France would still be the most powerful nation in the game. The army/navy/population levels/economic potential and many other advantages. I am sure a good player will ensure the recovery of France. I for one will not wish any new French player any ill will.

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Re: France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

Post by Stuart Bailey on Fri Feb 01, 2013 12:09 am

Ref Albreda comments I dont think a civil war in France is that likely since to have a civil war you generally need two active players. G7 often struggles to find one for France and I dont see anyone volunteering to play the French Protestants in the near future.

Civil Strife will just have to remain the favour hobby of the English, HRE & the Ottomans.

Actually I think Basileus is a bit harsh on his Austrian Army which is more like a 6 series BMW lovely balance and good manover, just a bit plain to look at and not much in the way of extra's.

Some of the other Hapsburgs would seem to to have a much more simple and direct approach to combat. Oddly with Diplomacy this seems to be reversed.

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Re: France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

Post by Guest on Sat Feb 02, 2013 6:25 pm

Stuart Bailey wrote:Ref Albreda comments I dont think a civil war in France is that likely since to have a civil war you generally need two active players. G7 often struggles to find one for France and I dont see anyone volunteering to play the French Protestants in the near future.

Civil Strife will just have to remain the favour hobby of the English

I didn't mean to suggest there would be civil war amongst the French. I was referring to Jason's question on what would happen to France, with a bit of info on what I understand to have been going on in England. Seemingly I quoted the wrong post though seeing as how I'm clearly a bit of a numpty with forum posting. lol!

Sorry for the confusion. scratch

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Re: France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

Post by J Flower on Mon Feb 04, 2013 1:18 pm

It could be an interesting thought if France took a Protestant king, wonder what it would do to the game.
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Re: France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

Post by Ardagor on Mon Feb 11, 2013 4:39 pm

Another month, another blow to the French. Vendome killed in action and the Armee du Nord have fallen apart and no longer exist as an army.
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Re: France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

Post by Jason on Mon Feb 11, 2013 7:12 pm

To say things are going badly for France is quite an understatement...lets hope their military can last until the April ceasefire.

On a different note, interesting to see the Jesuits amongst the Most Admired.

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Re: France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

Post by Basileus on Tue Feb 12, 2013 8:59 pm

We need a score card on this war, I havent seen the full details on Austrian losses yet, I suspect those losses will be quite high as well. But that looks like the Armee du Nord done for. The Armee du Rhine is hold up in Chalons and there is one left in Southampton. A truce in April will prove to be timely for the French.
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Re: France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

Post by Regor on Wed Feb 13, 2013 6:34 pm

Basilus - nah, not soon enough for them. Poor France will be a shell if the allies don't stop soon. and then another England beckons! Bets on a Protestant king should be banned...

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Re: France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

Post by Stuart Bailey on Wed Feb 13, 2013 11:10 pm

The Dec 1706 Glori du Roi issue has shown up and for non players of G7 here are the highlights:

1) Vendome & the French Army of the North ignored the Spanish threat to its rear and kept heading East in an attempt to cut a way through the Vaudemont's Austrians and get to Verdun. Vendomes plucky Dragoons and Hussars cut their way out pursued by Austrians but the rest of the Army inc the Great Man himself failed. Louis Joseph de Bourbon Marechal de France being being killed in battle with Austrain Cuirassiers.

2) With covering forces drawn away it all seemed set up for the massed armies of Berwick, Boufflers the Grand Douphin etc to fall on the Austrian lines and liberate their King and his trapped Army. 50,000 Dutch showed up for the climatic battle but apart from that Nothing !!!!! The Austrians are not even bothering to use their mortars to drop bombs on Louis XIV and his trapped Cavalry. Do they not wish to upset the peace talks? Or are they short of gunpowder?

3) One suspects that if the Emperor's youngest son was in charge of the "siege" things would not be quite so civil. Charles of Spain spending much of the month rewarding commanders who share his view that complex manover on the Battlefield is for whimps and the route to victory is over the dead bodies of the foe. Opinion in Spain, Rome, England etc etc remains divided on Clarles Von Hapsburg. Is he the simple tool of his father, Spanish Ministers and the Catholic Church in Spain? Or is he just simple as in "simple, direct and brutal" when upset?

4) In Yorktown the peace talks seem to be crawling along and are still on matters of protocul. The Austrians & the Spanish inc Flanders have now confirmed they are happy with a April cease fire as proposed by the French. But its still to be decided if the Dutch can have their own seat at the talks or will be represented by Austria. For Spain & Flanders being represented by the head of the House of Austria is not a problem but for the French to demand that the Dutch are treated as part of the House of Hapsburg is a no doubt culculated insult to Republican feelings in the UDP.

French Diplomacy no doubt takes the view that events in England have weakened the Dutch position.

5) William of Orange King of England & Stadtholder of Holland now seems to be under house arrest and has clearly been betrayed by the Tory Leaders. While his Protestant followers seem to be either disbanding or going into exile.
Showing no more fighting spirit against the Jacobites than they showed against the French.

6) King James Stuart has now landed in England after snubbing a second young lady in France. Oddly no English Protestant patriot has put a knife in him yet but its probably only a matter of time.

7) On the subject of snubs the Russian and the Greek Orthodox Churches have issued a stinking one to the Pope.

Cool Finally back in the dear old HRE the Bavarian Army has marched into Stettin while the Reich Marshel is visiting Christmas markets in Munich. Surely he should be fighting in France scratch ? Also missing from the Battle Field in France is the Elector of Prussia who would sooner spend the time in his counting house trying to make 2 plus 2 equals 5.




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Re: France V The Hapsburgs (G7)

Post by Guest on Wed Feb 13, 2013 11:38 pm

A question; who are the next in line of William and James?

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