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 Post subject: Cavalry costs
PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 10:16 am 
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Posts: 164
Location: USA
I have been playing mostly western theater games lately and for the Rebs cavalry plays a major role. I am currently losing a Murfeeboro battle mainly due to my losses in cavalry. Granted I did a few dumb things with them that has hurt but for the most part they were used like infantry. I could have avoided this I guess but at the times they were engaged they were needed. This leads to this question, should losses for cavalry fighting on foot cost the same as infantry. My rationale behind this is that at least for the Rebs the added costs in my opinion reflect the losses in horses. If the cavalry is fighting in line then the horses are generally out of harms way. Also the cavalry of the day, unlike Napoleonic horsemen really didn't need a lot of training since almost everyone of that time period could ride a horse and they didn't often charge or manouver in formations. Their fire power could also be reduced by 25% to reflect the troopers tending the horses.

Lt General Jon Thayer
III Corps
Army of Northern Virginia

jonathanthayer@bellsouth.net


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 12:52 pm 
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Hi, General,

I believe the program already assesses the 25% penalty in dismounted fire and melee for cavalry.

I played the Murfreesboro scenario just once, and the Confederates do have a lot of cavalry, but I found this not to be advantageous as the battle is fought mostly in wooded terrain.

The 3-volume set on the Union cavalry by Stephen Z Starr is an excellent reference, if you can get it. I thought it put a lot of things in perspective. In the book he says the vast majority of Union cavalrymen had to be taught to ride, and the horses also had to be broken.

MG Mike Mihalik
1/III/AoMiss/CSA


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 2:32 pm 
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The higher VP value of cavalry mostly reflects the higher cost of raising such troops. Unfortunately they don't track casualties down men and horses. They also don't change the morale rating of cavalry when they dismount reflecting their general dislike of fighting as infantry. But I suspect the primary reason for the higher costs is to discourage players from using them so agressively. Their primary mission was patrolling the flanks and scouting. They were to valuable to waste as infantry but in our games there is little reward for conserving them.

LG. Kennon Whitehead
Chatham Grays
1/1/III AoM (CSA)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Feb 25, 2009 4:47 am 
I will throw out, however, that by 1864 the majority of cavalry use was as dismounted - read studies of the Overland Campaign and nearly every battle was precluded by dismounted cavalry fighting as infantry against either infantry or other dismounted cavalry - prior to Spottsylvania (4th VA blocks the Brock Road while Anderson shifts), prior to North Anna, after North Anna when Grant swung east, along the Pamunkey, prior to Cold Harbor, etc.

So it was not out of the question and was, in fact, at times the norm later in the war. The above are just a few examples.

I would also propose that melee casualties for cavalry should be lower when they are attacked by infantry much the same as cavalry-vs--cavalry melee casualties are lessed owing to their likelihood of retreating once the infantry got close enough to actually consider charging. As it is infantry just mutilates dismounted cavalry in melees when in fact they would have just backed away before the infantry got close enough...

Regards,

Lt. Gen. Alan Lynn
CSA Chief of Staff
3rd Bgde, 3rd Cav Div, II Corps, AoA

God Bless <><


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Feb 25, 2009 5:37 am 
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<blockquote id="quote"><font size="3" face="book antiqua" id="quote">quote:<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"><i>Originally posted by ALynn</i>
<br />I will throw out, however, that by 1864 the majority of cavalry use was as dismounted - read studies of the Overland Campaign and nearly every battle was precluded by dismounted cavalry fighting as infantry against either infantry or other dismounted cavalry - prior to Spottsylvania (4th VA blocks the Brock Road while Anderson shifts), prior to North Anna, after North Anna when Grant swung east, along the Pamunkey, prior to Cold Harbor, etc.

So it was not out of the question and was, in fact, at times the norm later in the war. The above are just a few examples.

I would also propose that melee casualties for cavalry should be lower when they are attacked by infantry much the same as cavalry-vs--cavalry melee casualties are lessed owing to their likelihood of retreating once the infantry got close enough to actually consider charging. As it is infantry just mutilates dismounted cavalry in melees when in fact they would have just backed away before the infantry got close enough...

Regards,

Lt. Gen. Alan Lynn
CSA Chief of Staff
3rd Bgde, 3rd Cav Div, II Corps, AoA

God Bless <><
<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"></blockquote id="quote"></font id="quote">

True there was a shift in how cavalry was used by both sides after 1863 but for different reasons. For the Union the cavalry being organized into larger formations capable of fighting dismounted and being armed with breech loaders or repeaters made them more effective dismounted. For the South the condition of their horses made extensive mounted fighting difficult plus the lack of carbines.

But still cavalry were high value units that weren't thrown away unneccesarially. They were used to quickly seize key positions where their mobility allowed them too then hold on dismounted until releaved by infantry. Rarely were they kept in the line once infantry was there.

From the game point of view we have few scenarios based in 1864. If so then there is some justification for reducing the VP value of cavalry but for different reasons. For the Union the horse had become more a means of transportation to the battle and they had plenty of them. The men were not as well trained to use them so were not a valuable as before. For the South the shortage was horses not men to use them.

LG. Kennon Whitehead
Chatham Grays
1/1/III AoM (CSA)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Feb 25, 2009 6:00 am 
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<blockquote id="quote"><font size="3" face="book antiqua" id="quote">quote:<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"><i>Originally posted by ALynn</i>

I would also propose that melee casualties for cavalry should be lower when they are attacked by infantry much the same as cavalry-vs--cavalry melee casualties are lessed owing to their likelihood of retreating once the infantry got close enough to actually consider charging. As it is infantry just mutilates dismounted cavalry in melees when in fact they would have just backed away before the infantry got close enough...
<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"></blockquote id="quote"></font id="quote">
Hi, General,

Chalk it up to the limitations of the system. You should be able to react to infantry approaching from half a mile away, but IGO_UGO prevents it. But here is a suggestion. Have cavalry automatically rout whenever an infantry unit enters an adjacent hex. This will also take care of the problem of a squad of mounted cavalry blocking a thousand infantry. It won't affect their ability to delay through the skirmish function though. Don't know how that would play out with Buford's Cavalry at Gettysburg or Forrest's at Chickamauga or Stuart's at Spotsylvania or Sheridan's at Appomattox. Or the Texans at Valverde and Glorieta for that matter.

Just got done with the South Mountain book by John Michael Priest. Priest's volumes provide a lot of insight into the dynamics of the firefight. While there are a number of instances of close combat, most often the outnumbered rebs essentially routed before that level of contact. The kicker is that a lot of them were picked off while trying to get away, something that isn't really modeled in the HPS system.


MG Mike Mihalik
1/III/AoMiss/CSA


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