Patsy & Arab Big Battle Strategy Manual

II/83b Patrician Roman East with II/23a LPIA Nomad ally
Aggression 1, Arable Topography


Command 1:
(Mobile, BGo Primary)
High Pip, 13 elements
1x 3Cv (CinC)
1x 3Cv
2x 4Kn
2x 3Kn
3x 2LH
4x 4Ax

Command 2:
(Slow, anti Heavy Foot)
Low Pip, 11 elements
1x 4Bd (SubGen)
3x 4Bd
4x 4Wb
2x 2Ps
1x 2LH

Command 3: Arab ally
(deceptive slow/fast)
Ally Pip, 12 elements
1x 2LH (Gen)
1x 2LH
1x 2Cm
1x 3Cm
6x 4Bd
2x 2Ps

* Arab Force Choices. With Arable topography, the Patsies never get to set out Dunes or Oases. The Arabs only take one (or possibly two) heavy camel elements, and their primary purpose is to be a Wall of Psiloi-supported Blade with very mobile reserves.

* Terrain. Standard terrain design is as follows (see map): a large Woods on the far left edge, on the center line. In the left half of the map, no other terrain (just the woods). In the next 1/4 of the map (from the center line left-right to the 3/4 line to the right) put three steep hills in a broad V open to the left towards the distant woods. In the far right quarter of the map, no terrain at all.

The general terrain idea is that the C-in-C (which must be placed on map in the first two commands when defender) will always go down behind the steep hills. Depending upon the tactical situation it will have an excellent force to dominate that ground (with 4x4Ax and Kn/Cv/LH support). There won't be enough BGo there for enemy with more BGo troops to be able to win, especially if my C-in-C just holds the hill advantage on the hill that is within his setup area. The terrain position makes it impossible for an enemy without BGo troops to just ignore the line of hills, though -- doing that will allow the very mobile C-in-C command to sweep through and around the hills and hit the enemy flank.

The rest of the terrain is open, essentially. The left flank woods is an anchor for the Arab Blade line -- if it is infested with enemy BGo troops just stay back a bit; if it isn't the Arabs can take it themselves without fear.

The enemy commander will have two bad choices. Either (1) compress all his forces in and to the right of the line of hills, or (2) split his forces across the hills. If he chooses (1) the Patsy dominance of the hills and the mobile C-in-C command's ability to sweep around will allow it to flank his forces. If he chooses (2) the Patsy player can delay with the C-in-C and attempt to win the battle with the other two commands concentrated on the enemy's remaining forces.

* Deployment Defending. The Arabs can fight against just about anyone, as they've got psiloi-supported blade with Camel and LH(Gen) backup. The C-in-C can also fight against anyone on appropriate terrain (moderately likely, with Agg1), as they will have an excellent role to fill. The important question, then, is what role the Heavy Foot (Bd/Wb) command will fill? The major issue with gaining a victory will probably be getting those guys aimed at something nice and meaty -- an enemy command with spear, by preference. THEREFORE, Patsy/Arab deployment will be as follows (when defending):
1. put the C-in-C right behind the hills, mostly in columns to aid redeploying or moving fast through the hills and gaps between them.
2. put the Arabs in the open, centered in the major central gap, only 6 elements wide, as a blade line with psiloi support and all the mounted elements behind that to aid. That will leave a gap at least 4 elements wide between the Arabs and the hills, and another wider gap between the Arabs and the far left board edge.
3. Now the enemy places all his commands.
4. Finally place the Heavy Foot command. It can go on either flank of the Arab command, based upon where the meaty enemy foot are. There will usually be at least one enemy command with Spear, Blade, or Bow -- that is the target for the Heavy Foot command. If there are two commands opposite the Arabs and they are both Knights Galore, put the Heavy Foot between the Arabs and the Hills and use them to support the Auxilia in their Hill effort. This is risky, and ends up leaving the Arabs exposed to a Knight charge, but they're psiloi-supported Blade, and with the Woods on their right flank and their mobile elements they should be able to last for a long time, and maybe even foil or destroy the enemy Knights.

* Deployment Attacking (enemy sets up terrain). The Patsies and Arabs are primarily a heavy foot army that is not weakened by terrain. As such, it isn't possible for the enemy to weaken its chances by putting out wads of terrain. On maps that are Wads of BGo, the primary thing is to assign commands to roles as follows:
1. the Heavy Foot command must be aimed at something nice and meaty, and should avoid LH/Ps (which delay it -- it is the lowpip command), or enemy Kn (which might wipe it out), or enemy Elephants. Anything else, they can take. Choose the best target for the Heavy Foot command -- that's the highest deployment priority.
2. the C-in-C command should choose the most strategically important piece of BGo to dominate. Don't bite off more than you can chew -- either of the other two commands should help if the enemy is going to contest the important piece(s). Ignore or screen off any irrelevant BGo -- the Arabs should be able to do that without any problem, and the Heavy Foot command is also an excellent screen if there are no vulnerable targets for it to attack.
3. the Arabs can take whatever remains -- they don't care much, BGo or not.

On maps that are similar to my own terrain choices (some BGo, but mostly open) keep the same deployment priorities as above. On maps that are wide open spaces, against opponents with some heavy foot, keep the deployment priorities above. Against opponents with nothing but mounted on a wide open space map, it might become necessary to swap 3x4Bd and 1x2Ps from the Heavy Foot command and give it to the C-in-C as a micro Psiloi-supported Blade line, in trade for the 4x4Ax. The lowpip command now gets a "hiding" role, dominating some lonely pieceBGo as best it can.



Command 1:
(Mobile, BGo Primary)
High Pip, 16 elements
1x 3Cv (CinC)
1x 3Cv
2x 4Kn
2x 2LH
3x 4Ax
4x 4Wb (filler)
2x 4Bd
1x 2Ps
Open field formation: Bd /Ps flanked by Knights and Cav. Auxilia against a BGo (there has to be some somewhere on the map), and Wb beside them. Frightening. LH in reserve, or on the main line if they must be. C-in-C in reserve behind the main Kn line.

Command 2:
(Slow, anti Heavy Foot)
Low Pip, 11 elements
1x 4Bd (SubGen)
1x 4Bd
2x 3Kn
1x 4Ax
1x 2Ps
2x 2LH
Open formation: Bd with Ps support flanked by Knights; Aux and LH in reserve. 4 element frontage.


Command 3: Arab ally
(deceptive slow/fast)
Ally Pip, 12 elements
1x 2LH (Gen)
1x 2LH
1x 2Cm
1x 3Cm
6x 4Bd
2x 2Ps
Open field formation: wall of Bd/Ps and a camel, with the LH/2Cm and LHGen in reserve. 7 element frontage.




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