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Thread: so how to use pikes in RR/RC?

  1. #1

    Icon5 so how to use pikes in RR/RC?

    I've never really understand how to use pikes even in vanilla, to me they only useful to absorb cavalry charges, but even after absorbed the initial charges, pikes are beaten to death by heavier cavalry....

    I'm using april RR/RC + huger unit size and speed, just now I've tried tercio pikemen vs the ultimate genoesse cavalry, it was 251 vs 80....

    I set the pikes to use guard mode and spear wall, and it succeeded absorbing the charge and kill 1/2 the cavalry, but after that the pikes were fallen down as easily as flies

    so how to actually use these phalanx successors? do they need to be assisted by other units - meaning, only good at absorbing charges?

    how about pikes vs infantries?

  2. #2

    Default Re: so how to use pikes in RR/RC?

    Take them out of guard mode after absorbing the charge.
    Do not allow them to be flanked.
    Some units are specialised vs pikes, eg zweihander and sword-and-buckler men.

  3. #3

    Default Re: so how to use pikes in RR/RC?

    Quote Originally Posted by Point Blank View Post
    Some units are specialised vs pikes, eg zweihander and sword-and-buckler men.
    PB, does that mean those units get an attack bonus vs pikes or rather their attack animation excels against pike-type weapons?
    Wealth beyond measure, Outlander.

  4. #4

    Default Re: so how to use pikes in RR/RC?

    They have reduced unit radius so slip between the pikes better, and have a faster attack, but slightly lower attack value.

    Note that pikes have no defense animations, their base defense is 1, and even after all defense modifiers have been applied their defense is again halved after that (rounded down). I also slowed their attack anims by 25%. I'm pretty happy with pikes now. In a line, they are very tough, but if you break up their formation or hit them from the flank they are very vulnerable. For a long time they have been overpowered, I think they are OK now.

  5. #5

    Default Re: so how to use pikes in RR/RC?

    I'm pretty happy with pikes now. In a line, they are very tough
    okay, I've been sparring tercio pike vs sicilian norman knights (both mounted and dismounted), they lose badly. So how come they're very tough? against what, and how? yes, I disabled their guard after initial charge, and they were not flanked, I used a 3-4 line depth... and FFS it was 253 vs 153/80! (huger unit sieze)

    sooooo.... what I did wrong???

  6. #6

    Default Re: so how to use pikes in RR/RC?

    Quote Originally Posted by napoleonic View Post
    okay, I've been sparring tercio pike vs sicilian norman knights (both mounted and dismounted), they lose badly. So how come they're very tough? against what, and how? yes, I disabled their guard after initial charge, and they were not flanked, I used a 3-4 line depth... and FFS it was 253 vs 153/80! (huger unit sieze)

    sooooo.... what I did wrong???
    Nothing theyve been changed and are absolutely unusable now. With almost no anti cavalry advantage (plus 2) On the other hand halberds are the ones that are overpowered. They beat any infantry, cost really almost nothing in compare to their proficiency and even are much better against cavalry.

    Ive played multiplayer in rennaisance preferably and it really isnt good as it is at all and was much better before(especially pikes). Strong ap cavalry cost almost nothing, ap infantry is unbeatable and cheap so you simply use no pikes just halberds, muskets and gothic knights if you are HRE (Which wins by itself)

    I know noone that has something to do with this mod will be reading this but ap atribute is all nonsence and should be replaced by higher attack value with slower attack speed.(Something like what was done to missile units- thats really good change) If someone is interested in testing it in mp let me know by now I test some combinations to make rennaisance warfare less one sided with 6 fully upgraded halberdier units in box maiming anything badly except for the same type of units.

  7. #7

    Default Re: so how to use pikes in RR/RC?

    halberd overpowered? they also butchered by some knights.... haven't tried it against lesser infantry though....

  8. #8

    Default Re: so how to use pikes in RR/RC?

    I remember getting my Foot Huscarls badly beaten by Swiss Pikemen, but the pike militia of Sicily and the Teutonic Order doesn't fare well against most enemies (and I'm using the February update). If pikemen are even crappier now...

  9. #9

    Default Re: so how to use pikes in RR/RC?

    ah so Point Blank muat defend his claim now... how and where does he get his very tough pikes?

  10. #10
    hippacrocafish's Avatar Campidoctor
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    Default Re: so how to use pikes in RR/RC?

    I found the Pikes to be quite weak as well so I beefed them up a bit, I thought it was strange that their charge bonus was so high and their actual attack so low. Basically I gave them a very low charge bonus (1-2 for low tier pikes, 3-4 for good pikes) and raised their actual attack by 2 or 3 points. I did the same thing for spears as well.

    I could upload my export_descr_units if anyone is interested.

  11. #11

    Default Re: so how to use pikes in RR/RC?

    Pikes are meant to hold a line and the better pikes can also push and kill. But, really, it's just not reasonable to expect pikes to kill plate armoured knights. The pikes will just likely last longer than any other unit which is all you should expect them to do.

    It just seems like you're expecting them to be like the phalanxes of Rome Total War. In the middle ages, pikes never were a superweapon against infantry; they evolved as a means to counter cavalry and were easy (and cheap I believe) to equip an army with. Only the best trained pikemen could effectively act as a moving wall of spears and take a more offensive role. And these were often supplemented with halberds. But without halberds, even the best could hardly be expected to kill heavy armoured units.

  12. #12

    Default Re: so how to use pikes in RR/RC?

    Quote Originally Posted by meese View Post
    Pikes are meant to hold a line and the better pikes can also push and kill. But, really, it's just not reasonable to expect pikes to kill plate armoured knights. The pikes will just likely last longer than any other unit which is all you should expect them to do.

    It just seems like you're expecting them to be like the phalanxes of Rome Total War. In the middle ages, pikes never were a superweapon against infantry; they evolved as a means to counter cavalry and were easy (and cheap I believe) to equip an army with. Only the best trained pikemen could effectively act as a moving wall of spears and take a more offensive role. And these were often supplemented with halberds. But without halberds, even the best could hardly be expected to kill heavy armoured units.

    Yeah, pikemen mainly butchered calvery, though from what ive read they where semi decent against infantry too, im suprised they dont have like a +8 or 10 attack mod against calvry atleast
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  13. #13

    Default Re: so how to use pikes in RR/RC?

    It's mainly because they're strong against a cavalry charge but not so much when the cavalry get inside the box. Giving a higher attack modifier would make them too powerful in combat against cavalry which they weren't really.

  14. #14

    Default Re: so how to use pikes in RR/RC?

    Quote Originally Posted by meese View Post
    Pikes are meant to hold a line and the better pikes can also push and kill. But, really, it's just not reasonable to expect pikes to kill plate armoured knights. The pikes will just likely last longer than any other unit which is all you should expect them to do.

    It just seems like you're expecting them to be like the phalanxes of Rome Total War. In the middle ages, pikes never were a superweapon against infantry; they evolved as a means to counter cavalry and were easy (and cheap I believe) to equip an army with. Only the best trained pikemen could effectively act as a moving wall of spears and take a more offensive role. And these were often supplemented with halberds. But without halberds, even the best could hardly be expected to kill heavy armoured units.
    well the creator himself said they're very tough, so forgive me but yes, I expect them to at least suffer just a close defeat against knights (mounted and dismounted), not crushing defeat

    how about pikes vs non knights infantries? spearmen? sword? axes?

    also what halberds good against?

    lastly how to use them properly in the game? with rr/rc of course

  15. #15

    Default Re: so how to use pikes in RR/RC?

    I always use Pikes in combination with Polearms, Set up your pole arms just behind the Pikes. Take Spearwall off the Polearms. Once the pikes have absorbed the charge (of anything, cav, infantry ect) send in your Polearms.
    I find this an almost unbeatable combination, even milita units become very powerful in this configuration, try it and see, even Gothic Plate will be beaten up by this combination, Militia Pikes and Voluge Militia = win
    Don't change Pikes they are fine as they are, they really only work as part of a combined arms team, as it should be.

  16. #16

    Default Re: so how to use pikes in RR/RC?

    merocaine and meese are right. Pikes main role against cavalry was to keep it away, and/or protect gunners/crossbowmen who cound retreat under the pikes if charged. They were effective against a charge, but far less so if their formation was disrupted and horsemen broke in. Hence, as has been said above, the usual practice was to mingle polearm units amongst/behind the pikes to move in if any close melee developed.

    For their bonus versus cavalry, the have the spear attribute (+8), long_pike (+something, not sure but serves to keep the cavalry collision with the pike at a distance, and provides additional bonuses when braced), and an additional +2 mount effect, plus the actual pike attack - so total is at least 12 or more usually. This is more than a 2H sword. So is the pike really underpowered vs cavalry? I don't think so.

    Now just because a weapon is long, does not necessarily make it lethal versus cavalry - that mechanic is handled by the above attributes. It is not particularly easy to accurately attack with a weapon some 18 feet long, and this especially applies versus armored infantry who may only be vulnerable at armor weak points.

    Historically, most pike formations were used defensively, and unless highly trained and disciplined (eg Spanish Tercios, Swiss) were not often used successfully in the attack (eg Scottish at Flodden were butchered by billmen once their advance was broken up by terrain and longbow fire). So don't necessarily expect them to do well versus heavily-armored infantry. On the positive side, by the time that pikes really came into prominence, most really heavy opponents were mounted - and hence vulnerable to firearms.

    Once engaged, or engaged in any other way than receiving a cav charge, its best to take them out of guard mode, though this risks their ranks losing depth and being outflanked, which can be disastrous.
    Last edited by Point Blank; July 12, 2010 at 07:15 AM.

  17. #17

    Default Re: so how to use pikes in RR/RC?

    While the pike formation is hardly undefeatable, it should be extremely powerful frontally. A block of pikemen charged by even the heaviest cavalry will butcher the cavalrymen by the simple dint of killing all the horses (and disabling most of the knights). There is no way a frontal charge of cavalry can go through a prepared pike formation. If the formation is broken up, then it's a melee and the pikemen will lose.

    In an infantry vs infantry fight, pikes are going to massacre pretty much any kind of infantry. Nothing should be able to actually defeat them one on one, with the exception of Doppelsoldners and Claymore-using troops, and possibly full-plate armoured knights. Even against a man in full plate, a pike can still deal enough trauma to punch through a steel cuirass or break bones through blunt impact.

    If flanked, a pike formation will slowly begin to break apart, but it shouldn't just disintegrate.
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  18. #18

    Default Re: so how to use pikes in RR/RC?

    French super-heavy cavalry was seen to charge completely through pike squares on occasion (Ravenna). Spanish sword-and-buckler infantry cut them to pieces during several engagements as well. Heavy horse armor of the time was mostly proof against pike thrusts, as was good infantry armor.

    Pikes were primarily a response to the power of heavy cavalry, while providing an artificial 'wall' that the new firearms units could hide 'behind' when charged.

    Even militia pike units can provide solid defense in good tactical circumstances, but they need good leadership.
    Last edited by Point Blank; July 12, 2010 at 01:23 PM.

  19. #19

    Default Re: so how to use pikes in RR/RC?

    never mind...deleted
    Last edited by Iforgot; July 12, 2010 at 01:42 PM. Reason: deleted

  20. #20

    Default Re: so how to use pikes in RR/RC?

    menaulatoi have shorter pikes, hence a +1 attack and defense bonus but less effect versus cavalry. Pike units all (except swiss etc) have low attacks so won't do too well vs armored opponents, and halberd militia have at least mail, whereas the AP halberds reduce the menaulatoi armor effectiveness to the same level as the halberd militia.

    More than any other unit, pikes must be employed in a combined-arms army with a well-structured layout (unless you are Swiss Armored Pikemen, when it really doesn't matter!)

    Menaulatoi pikemen are also just average, with normal training and discipline. Pikemen really only become effective offensively when highly_trained and disciplined, which is meant to encourage the recruitment of units such as the Swiss, which no nationally-recruited force could match for many years. Add some axe/polearm and gun/crossbow units to the mix you will see them becoming much more effective, as I said above think of them as a moving 'wall' that missile units can hide behind.

    In fact in pike combat, besides armor, morale is the critical factor. Here the Swiss reign supreme, being unbreakable.

    I think the Pavia historical battle still works in RR/RC, try it and see

    Try Swiss Armored Pikemen and Swiss Halberdiers plus Black Band Arquebusiers for a nice combination!

    Early medieval pike/missile units were around a 80:20 ratio - as firearms imcreased in effectivness, that ratio reversed.
    Last edited by Point Blank; July 12, 2010 at 02:22 PM.

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