Author Topic: Equipment Overhaul  (Read 203 times)

Andrew

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Equipment Overhaul
« on: June 16, 2017, 07:56:06 PM »
So, I'd like to start working on this as I'll be tinkering with how soldiers handle their equipment in the coming days anyways. This is what I'm thinking things could look like in their next phase:

Melee Items (Weapons):
  • Club - Think "improvised weapons"
  • Axe - Bonus against wood shields
  • Peasant Flail - Purely wooden, more powerful than a club. Cheap, breaks easily.
  • Spear - Bonus against cavalry
  • Pike - Like halberd, but no defense boost
  • Halberd - Mostly offensive, but slight defense boosts, bonus to dismounting targets
  • Mace - Bonus against plated armors
  • Sword
  • Morning Star - A mace with pointy bits, no more bonus, but better overall (even when accounting for the mace's bonus)
  • One-handed Flail - "Ball and chain" weapon, that can harm it's user when it misses. Powerful though.
  • Broadsword
Ranged Items (Weapons)
  • Slings - Super cheap, not very strong at all though.
  • Shortbow - Small bonus on horseback
  • Javelins - Double as a melee weapon in a pinch. No longer single use.
  • Crossbow - Single shot if mounted.
  • Longbow - Small penalty on horseback
Armour (in order of defense provided)
  • Cloth Armor - Light Infantry
  • Leather Armor - Light Infantry
  • Scale Armor - Medium Infantry, no more metal requirement
  • Chain Mail - Medium Infantry
  • Mail and Plate - Heavy Infantry
  • Plate Armor - Heavy Infantry
Mounts
  • Saddle Horses - Really, more intended for work on a farm than part of a military.
  • Coursers
  • War Horses (Destriers) - More likely to survive blows
  • Camels - When we introduce larger scale deserts.
  • ?Elephants? - Very powerful, VERY dangerous.
Equipment
  • Round Shield - Cheap, wood shield.
  • Kite Shield - Standard, wood shield.
  • Heater Shield - Metal shield.
  • Pavise - Bonus against ranged attacks for infantry, no bonus in melee. Infantry only.
  • Dagger - Replaces short swords
  • ?Bandages? - Increases recovery chance
I'm open to further suggestions as well, and would like to include an initial rollout of advantages/disadvantages with this, as well as having mounts be separated from general equipment.
« Last Edit: June 17, 2017, 02:03:07 PM by Andrew »
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silvershot

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Re: Equipment Overhaul
« Reply #1 on: June 16, 2017, 08:16:01 PM »
Nice to see the "Improvised" or "basic" weapon types I talked about show up here! Not that you need have seen my post, but I think they'd be a useful addition for both flavor and for emergency numbers bolstering.

One other comment at this time: If a pike is intended to be used with a shield, it may make more sense thematically to call it a long spear, and the spear a short spear. Or just "spear" and "short spear." Nothing really important, there. Javelin change will be awesome -- proper skirmishers! (Though not as awesome as in the sense of Classical Peltasts, we'd need a short sword and shield back for that).

I guess that leads to another question... Will Javelins allow for usage of standard shields? If not, the pavise seems a typically poor fit for someone using javelins, while at least a smaller round/wooden shield seems to fit well.

This is generally a change I am very excited for, even in terms of just flavor.

Roran Hawkins

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Re: Equipment Overhaul
« Reply #2 on: June 16, 2017, 09:25:38 PM »
I like the idea, definitely. How will you differentiate between weapons specifically? Will there be a difference between weapon damage and chance to hit, or will things remain at the same flat melee bonus? Will the presence or absence of a shield change a unit's offensive abilities with certain weapons ...? The more we know, the better we can tailor our suggestions to the theme.


What I personally would try to include somehow is that shields would fall out of use at higher grades of armour in favour of more offensive ability while shields would become more of a necessity with lower grades of armour for survival. Perhaps daggers as an off-hand could give more bonuses the better your armour is?


I'd also like to know what you had in mind for differences between the different mount types? Obviously chargers/destriers'd give the ultimate attack and defence bonus amongst them, but how would a courser or a saddle horse come into play here? Is there a planned difference in movement speed for them? Maybe saddle horses could serve primarily as a strategic movement bonus and a bonus for units to suffer less overcrowded bonus/penalties in battle as they have an easier time manoeuvering across the field, but don't necessarily fight on horseback?


Maybe you could even do something with formation weapons. By themselves their bonuses might not be as impressive as smaller weapons like swords, maces or broadswords, but perhaps pikes, spears and halberds should get an increased bonus if at least X friendly units using the same weapons (weapon group even?) are in combat and not routing? This value could be relative to enemy numbers or allied numbers, and should perhaps best be different for each type of formation weapon.

TO be fair, these are just some random ideas I'm putting out there. If there's anything more specific, please do specify.


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Gustav Kuriga

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Re: Equipment Overhaul
« Reply #3 on: June 16, 2017, 09:28:18 PM »
I would actually reverse the buffs for the halberd and pike, as they were largely defensive weapons, the pike even more so than the halberd.

silvershot

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Re: Equipment Overhaul
« Reply #4 on: June 16, 2017, 10:23:52 PM »
I would actually reverse the buffs for the halberd and pike, as they were largely defensive weapons, the pike even more so than the halberd.

Which is why I think it fits better as a long/full sized spear -- a good anti cavalry weapon but probably a bit less effective than a shorter spear ultimately in close quarters combat. You probably can't use it effectively to stab without impacting those behind you and it's not a very effective bludgeoning weapon. Halberds can still slash at least. The reach of a long spear is both a boon and a curse; opposite of a shorter spear which doesn't offer much of an advantage versus cavalry but would do better in tighter formations in close combat.

Furthermore, a long spear could be used as an effective cavalry spear.




What I personally would try to include somehow is that shields would fall out of use at higher grades of armour in favour of more offensive ability while shields would become more of a necessity with lower grades of armour for survival. Perhaps daggers as an off-hand could give more bonuses the better your armour is?



Parrying daggers would be much more effective in solo combat, much like where swords themselves would have been most effective (because a sword in a well trained hand was both offensive and defensive) but to that point, even a buckler might make more sense. Daggers are a good emergency weapon; they're easy to hide, and they're good for a coup de grace. I think two handed fighting with offensive weapons is a generally poor idea, but I'm sure it happened at some point. There's not much more reliable than having a good shield strapped to your second arm... it's technically also used as a weapon if you're a well trained man-at-arms or noble.

Really, heavier armor would be great because it could free their second hand to use a hand-and-a-half sword (such as some broad, most long or generally all bastard) or for them to use other supremely martial weapons such as a pollaxe to its full potential. Plus would allow for a powerful Mordhau/Mordstreich/Mordschlag, whichever you prefer, to perform more crushing blows akin to a warhammer or axe which could help against more heavily armored foes. (That's the one where you grip a sword by its blade with both hands and attack with the pommel)

In fact, I think a pollaxe would be a great addition to the game; it was a common weapon among at least Western European nobility, used a quarter-staff like approach to fighting, took a hell of a lot of training to be effective, and was also rather effective even against armored foes. It could be used as a very lethal or non-lethal weapon; the head could be used for slashing, crushing, tripping and blocking blow. Generally, they'd also be able to stab. A rather sophisticated weapon, really. Expensive to produce, expensive to train, but supremely effective.

Andre

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Re: Equipment Overhaul
« Reply #5 on: June 16, 2017, 10:52:48 PM »
Shields fell out of use as plate armor got more popular and effective, in favor of two-handed swords and possibly other weapons.


Personally I wouldn't put bandages on soldiers, I'd put them on entourage but make the entourage be able to help during battle aswell to possibly reduce deaths and make some soldiers just wounded instead or save some soldiers from wounds at all (with maybe just a recovery period but little chance of death?).


And about the camels, obviously they should only be trainable in deserts and scrublands, with less food used by the training facility and once horses consume food in the field they should also consume less there aswell. They should also just be less effective in combat than atleast coursers and destriers I believe, with less attack and defence bonuses, but likely more effective than saddle horses (I agree with Roran here about them being mainly for mobility).


And for pikes, I'd probably give them the defensive boost rather than halberds, with both having bonus against mounted troops (higher on the pike), and with the halberd having slightly higher offensive capabilities in general. I'd also make it so that a mace wielding soldier killing a soldier with heavier armor (scale and up maybe) would make it quite likely that the armor is just lost afterwards if the soldier was wounded or killed.

De-Legro

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Re: Equipment Overhaul
« Reply #6 on: June 17, 2017, 01:49:30 AM »
Why redefine chain as medium rather then just having three types of heavy armour? Will you also change leather/shield to not be "medium". The definitions of light/medium/heavy should be based upon the total protection offered by all equipment anyway, just like leather/shield bumps you up to a medium unit. I also agree that bandages make no sense for troops to carry, I am aware of no evidence that troops of the age carried personal first aid equipment. I like the idea of having some horse types, particularly a category that allows for mounted movement and dismounted combat. I would not bother with camels though. If you want to up the survivability of horses, allow us to have armoured variants.

As discussed on Discord I would refer to splint mail as mail and plate. It is much more descriptive of the actual armour form, and is not so easily confused with the similar splinted armour.
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Foxglove

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Re: Equipment Overhaul
« Reply #7 on: June 17, 2017, 02:49:58 AM »
I like the idea of having additional types of mounts such as camels. Elephants would be good too. Plus anything else we can think of that people could reasonably ride. I suppose giant wolves or big cats if we're venturing into light fantasy.
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De-Legro

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Re: Equipment Overhaul
« Reply #8 on: June 17, 2017, 02:53:34 AM »
I like the idea of having additional types of mounts such as camels. Elephants would be good too. Plus anything else we can think of that people could reasonably ride. I suppose giant wolves or big cats if we're venturing into light fantasy.

Why? Beyond "flavour" what are we adding? What end benefit are we trying to derive?
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Foxglove

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Re: Equipment Overhaul
« Reply #9 on: June 17, 2017, 03:10:55 AM »
Well, I think 'flavour' isn't something to discount just for its own ends, as we have the 'flavour' in the culture packs.

However, I think there is something to be gained by having concrete advantages assigned to different kinds of mounts. Camels, for example, could perhaps only be produced in scrubland regions that most people consider to be vastly inferior to grasslands and forests. Give those types of regions something that would make people more interested in them. Camels could also give a greater defensive bonus than unarmoured horses, perhaps reflecting that it's harder to unseat a rider on a camel (I know you could just chop away the legs from under any mount, however).

As far as elephants go (or giant wolves, cats, etc), it would introduce the concept of mounts acting as offensive weapons in themselves. As far as I know, we don't currently have that idea in the game, even though warhorses were often trained to bite and kick an enemy.
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De-Legro

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Re: Equipment Overhaul
« Reply #10 on: June 17, 2017, 03:39:21 AM »
Well, I think 'flavour' isn't something to discount just for its own ends, as we have the 'flavour' in the culture packs.

However, I think there is something to be gained by having concrete advantages assigned to different kinds of mounts. Camels, for example, could perhaps only be produced in scrubland regions that most people consider to be vastly inferior to grasslands and forests. Give those types of regions something that would make people more interested in them. Camels could also give a greater defensive bonus than unarmoured horses, perhaps reflecting that it's harder to unseat a rider on a camel (I know you could just chop away the legs from under any mount, however).

As far as elephants go (or giant wolves, cats, etc), it would introduce the concept of mounts acting as offensive weapons in themselves. As far as I know, we don't currently have that idea in the game, even though warhorses were often trained to bite and kick an enemy.

Camels are fine for dessert warfare, and make decent mounts for archers. They are less useful for lance units or indeed sword cavalry due to their annoying gait, but they make do. Supposedly horses will shy away from their smell, though I did note recently on my way out to a remote sewage treatment plant a property that had both horses and camel in the same paddock. Anyway my point is unless we want to replicate the large scale deserts of North Africa and the Arab states, camels are of limited use compared to horses.

War elephants would be interesting, at least if we implemented the fact that they are almost as likely to demolish your own army as they are that of your enemy.
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Foxglove

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Re: Equipment Overhaul
« Reply #11 on: June 17, 2017, 03:54:03 AM »
Talking of different types of terrain there makes me think how useful it could be to the game as a whole if this greatly expanded list of equipment types could confer advantages and disadvantages based on where a battle takes place. For example, cavalry would get their advantages in grasslands but lose them in dense forests. Heavy infantry would be at a severe disadvantage fighting in marshes, where light infantry would get greater bonuses. That sort of thing.

That would force people to put greater thought into where they intended to fight, rather than pumping out the best equipment they can produce all the time. It would also present the interesting possibilty of 'inferior' troops outclassing 'superior' troops if they were clever about where they brought them to battle.

The drawback is whether it would be possible to make terrain count enough across the board for it to have much of an impact. Most of the weapons we have here could comfortably be used in any terrain.
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De-Legro

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Re: Equipment Overhaul
« Reply #12 on: June 17, 2017, 04:19:25 AM »
Talking of different types of terrain there makes me think how useful it could be to the game as a whole if this greatly expanded list of equipment types could confer advantages and disadvantages based on where a battle takes place. For example, cavalry would get their advantages in grasslands but lose them in dense forests. Heavy infantry would be at a severe disadvantage fighting in marshes, where light infantry would get greater bonuses. That sort of thing.

That would force people to put greater thought into where they intended to fight, rather than pumping out the best equipment they can produce all the time. It would also present the interesting possibilty of 'inferior' troops outclassing 'superior' troops if they were clever about where they brought them to battle.

The drawback is whether it would be possible to make terrain count enough across the board for it to have much of an impact. Most of the weapons we have here could comfortably be used in any terrain.

It is also about tactics. You might for instance say, well of course archers are of little use in heavy forest. Yet the infamous Welsh Longbow was developed originally for conflict in the dense forest and hilly terrain of Wales, where it was used at much closer range for ambush attacks. Cavalry can't charge in massed unit in forest, but then again the targets that is useful against are also less prevalent in forest. They are still able to rapidly engage the enemy, and if anything the inability to form dense infantry blocks or long range heavy archery volley actually aids them.
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willy

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Re: Equipment Overhaul
« Reply #13 on: June 17, 2017, 06:04:47 AM »

I like the idea of expanding on equipment but I wouldn't throw too many redundant options at people. A high class shield (metal instead of the low-class wood shield) and cheap slings (as a low-class javelin) would be great additions. I figure most people go with 'what is best' with high investments or 'what will suffice' with less investment, then a bulk of mids. Cheap, middling, and elite gears seem a good spread that shouldn't confuse anyone.


I'd like to see specialty gears available for culture-packs. Maybe orientals get metal-less scale armor, maybe northern European axemen are more frightening. Little quirks that might see a large effect en masse, but are tied with flavor/RP. Mostly swag, but with a small yet noticeable effect they become swaggier.


Talking of different types of terrain there makes me think how useful it could be to the game as a whole if this greatly expanded list of equipment types could confer advantages and disadvantages based on where a battle takes place. For example, cavalry would get their advantages in grasslands but lose them in dense forests. Heavy infantry would be at a severe disadvantage fighting in marshes, where light infantry would get greater bonuses. That sort of thing.

That would force people to put greater thought into where they intended to fight, rather than pumping out the best equipment they can produce all the time. It would also present the interesting possibilty of 'inferior' troops outclassing 'superior' troops if they were clever about where they brought them to battle.

The drawback is whether it would be possible to make terrain count enough across the board for it to have much of an impact. Most of the weapons we have here could comfortably be used in any terrain.


I do like that, equipment/terrain modifiers. Buffs to cavalry in grass/scrub (charging/flanking), buffs to light-inf in forest (where dense growth restricts maneuvering), buffs for archers in marshes/hills (where it's a rougher time for infantry charges). It would at least add an extra dimension to war.




De-Legro

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Re: Equipment Overhaul
« Reply #14 on: June 17, 2017, 06:23:21 AM »
I like the idea of expanding on equipment but I wouldn't throw too many redundant options at people. A high class shield (metal instead of the low-class wood shield) and cheap slings (as a low-class javelin) would be great additions. I figure most people go with 'what is best' with high investments or 'what will suffice' with less investment, then a bulk of mids. Cheap, middling, and elite gears seem a good spread that shouldn't confuse anyone.


I'd like to see specialty gears available for culture-packs. Maybe orientals get metal-less scale armor, maybe northern European axemen are more frightening. Little quirks that might see a large effect en masse, but are tied with flavor/RP. Mostly swag, but with a small yet noticeable effect they become swaggier.



I do like that, equipment/terrain modifiers. Buffs to cavalry in grass/scrub (charging/flanking), buffs to light-inf in forest (where dense growth restricts maneuvering), buffs for archers in marshes/hills (where it's a rougher time for infantry charges). It would at least add an extra dimension to war.

But it is also largely nonsense . Nonsense that every accepts since D&D and games in general have adopted it, but still nonsense. Light infantry has no advantage over heavy in forest. Indeed generally the task of light infantry is skirmishing, moving fast in front of the main battle line, using slings, light bows, javelin what have you to disrupt enemy battle lines (and take down enemy skirmishes before they do the same to your lines. Although we should note here that sometimes light infantry referred to their role rather then the weight of their equipment and armour.

There is certainly some terrain that confers advantage, marsh and rocky terrain hinders cavalry and infantry alike from advancing for example, but in general it is far less then war games would have us believe.
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