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Thread: Schiltron, when and how to use?

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    Kihei
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    Default Schiltron, when and how to use?

    Whats the purpose of the schiltron?

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    Sher Khan's Avatar Mad Nomad Dad
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    Default Re: Schiltron, when and how to use?

    The purpose of the schiltron is to stand in the schiltron formation.

    ...


    That said, it's just standing close in a circle with spears pointed out. It's no RTW phalanx spear wall of doom, but it does do some of the work, especially if you use it right at the city gates. It'll even the ground between militia spearmen and massed cavalry even more in that situation.

    It's terrible against missle fire, and basically built to use when surrounded - a situation where militiamen wouldn't stand up for long anyway. Really, anyway you look at it, schiltron is terrible to use in the open field unless you get really creative.

    Stay in front of the gates or maybe in the town square though and you'll get some use out of it.

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    Vanquisher's Avatar Pili
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    Default Re: Schiltron, when and how to use?

    I've only ever used them when defending a town square as it seems to make them slightly more affective, use it elsewhere and they will just rout

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    the_mango55's Avatar Reppin the Religious Left
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    Default Re: Schiltron, when and how to use?

    I've done this before in bridge battles. I'm not sure if it works any better than normal, but it looks cool



    The spears in the middle are cheap militia units, that are just there to stall them, every one of them will be killed eventually, and the units crossing the bridge are sort of split in half by the schiltron, making it easier for your other spears to trap them, and your sword units to hit them in the flanks.
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    Yamabe
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    Default Re: Schiltron, when and how to use?

    In my experience, the Schiltron also seems to decrease the chance of your units routing. I had a battle where my unit of Sergeant Spearmen defended a breech in my city falls, and where they literally fought to the last man (i.e. their morale didn't even break, they neither routed nor had "fighting to the death" status).



    In this situation, the enemy poured in through the breech and quickly surrounded my spearmen, so I had my crossbowmen fire into the mass of enemies. Because the Schiltron has every man facing outwards, being surrounded isn't as critical as it would be for a phalanx line, and there were little to no casualties from friendly fire (the enemy soldiers got hit in the back, while a stray arrow would hit my own soldiers frontally).

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    Wimmer
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    Default Re: Schiltron, when and how to use?

    Schiltron's best use is in multiplayer, when you're facing an opponent with lots of cavalry. Putting the guys on the edge of your infantry line in schiltron makes you much less vunerable to being flacked by cavalry. I've even made made circles of shiltrons on a hill, with arrow troops in the middle. It was very effective against an army made up mostly of heavy cavalry.

    The AI is rubbish at doing this, so its less useful in single player, but against somebody who can flank properly, they're very useful.

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    Soryn Arkayn's Avatar Pietsch
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    Default Re: Schiltron, when and how to use?

    The Schiltron formation would be more useful if it were accurately portrayed in M2:TW. The problem is that it's portrayed as a circle formation with pikes out so that it's protected on all sides, but that's not what it's supposed to be. A schiltron is basically like a Medieval phalanx formation, but it's strictly for defending against cavalry, which is why the pikes are pointed at three different height levels (to ensure that horses can't jump over the pikes). It wasn't a circle formation, or at least, it wasn't limited to a circle; I suppose if a single group of spearmen were surrounded by cavalry they'd adopt a circle formation, but more likely the cavalry would charge from one direction and the spearmen would face all of their spearheads in that direction.

    I don't know why CA decided to make it a circle formation, which is pretty much useless. My educated guess is that they didn't want the Schiltron criticized for being identical to the Phalanx formation from R:TW. Another possibility is that they knew a proper Schiltron would effectively neutralize cavalry, which would piss off players (expensive knights being slaughtered by cheap militia) so they intentionally made it less useful and less realistic.

    It an annoying and stupid decision, but hopefully it can be modded to a phalanx-style formation.

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    Yoshihara
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    Default Re: Schiltron, when and how to use?

    ive tested the spearmen, and i gotta admit the knights' charge is EXTREMELY overpowered, there is no way 7 knights can kill 25 spearmen just by charging them and not fighting on.

    best defensive formation was BARELY the schiltrom, although it still lost to a cavalry unit of the same price, which really annoys me, why spend so much money on spearmen when they arent even as good as the cavalry theyre designed to stop?

    i decided to try a scenario with me on offense instead, i took 5 units of mailed knights vs 8 units of armored sergeants(the enemy's arming costing several hundred more florings then mine), i charged their main line(with second line being general's unit), instantly killed 50% of the enemy force but they kept fighting, so i had my cavalry fall back to attempt a second charge, but as they were leaving from the line suddenly all the enemy forces began to rout, i quickly charged the general's unit and won, losing only 35% of my cavalry...

    does anybody else agree this is pathetic? best counter to cavalry is cavalry...
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    Default Re: Schiltron, when and how to use?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hodor View Post
    In my experience, the Schiltron also seems to decrease the chance of your units routing. I had a battle where my unit of Sergeant Spearmen defended a breech in my city falls, and where they literally fought to the last man (i.e. their morale didn't even break, they neither routed nor had "fighting to the death" status).



    In this situation, the enemy poured in through the breech and quickly surrounded my spearmen, so I had my crossbowmen fire into the mass of enemies. Because the Schiltron has every man facing outwards, being surrounded isn't as critical as it would be for a phalanx line, and there were little to no casualties from friendly fire (the enemy soldiers got hit in the back, while a stray arrow would hit my own soldiers frontally).
    Is there not a phalanx type you can use for defending a breached wall more effectively by covering the whole breach?
    I recall seeing units in screenshots where all the men had their pikes facing the front, just like a RTW phalanx. Or is this schiltron only for spearmen and not pikeman?

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    Tiwaz's Avatar Bunnywabbita
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    Default Re: Schiltron, when and how to use?

    Schiltron is only for spearmen. Pikemen "brace" for charge in phalanx like formation.

    But not all armies get pikemen (at least this far England has none). In those cases schiltron can be useful. At least I have had good results when stuffing schiltron into wall breach when assaulted.


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    Chinen
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    Default Re: Schiltron, when and how to use?

    Quote Originally Posted by Soryn Arkayn View Post
    A schiltron is basically like a Medieval phalanx formation, but it's strictly for defending against cavalry, which is why the pikes are pointed at three different height levels (to ensure that horses can't jump over the pikes).
    ok, i nearly fell out of my chair when i read that.

    heavy destriers in barding, carrying 300+ pounds of plate, mail, lance, sword/mace and rider did not jump over spears. sorry.

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    Yoshihara
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    Default Re: Schiltron, when and how to use?

    historically, phalanx formations had higher pointed spears in the back for slight defense against arrows actually, deflecting some of them at last second making them curve or go slower or ****, but it wasnt really effective for that purpose.

    besides u gotta admit, with the raised spears, the phalanx looks cool, its like the best killing wall
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    Default Re: Schiltron, when and how to use?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ambrosius View Post
    ok, i nearly fell out of my chair when i read that.

    heavy destriers in barding, carrying 300+ pounds of plate, mail, lance, sword/mace and rider did not jump over spears. sorry.
    the pikes in the defensive stance are held horizontally, the different height levels prevent an enemy from being capable to evade all spears the same way (e.g. by jumping over the low ones) though that's more critical against infantry. Basically when on horse or foot, when you get close, you'll get hurt somehow.

    edit: this thread just won me a battle. I started a Sicily campaign and got jumped in Albania by Venice without a decent army so I kitbashed some resemblance of an army out of the local peasant mercenaries, some spearmen militia and the knights and cav I tagged along from Italy.

    Upon meeting the Venice main army my thought was just "Oh, that's alot of cavalry" so I decided to put my spearmen in Schiltron formation to my flanks and in the center filling the holes with the rest of my troops. When I wanted to drive away the enemy archers which were out in front of my main force I seem to have triggered the "active" ai (instead of the docile passive one I planned to pepper with arrows) and it started an allout cavalry attack along the whole front hitting my cavalry on the flanks where it stood and throwing my archers back in disarray. Without my Schiltrons halting the enemy cavalry I think I would simply have been swept away but as it is the cavalry got bogged down by them so I could throw in my own units. Soon after with a detached ambush force (half my cavalry) hidden in a forest charging their back and their general falling killed by some infantry countercharging the tables suddenly turnt and the Venice army collapsed allowing me to turn their flank and roll up the whole line.

    That was a stunning experience. I'm pretty sure without Schiltron those meager unexperienced Spearmen I shipped over from Italy would have falttered given that the ai charge inflicted massive casualties (possibly around 15% of my force) in mere seconds. Schiltron, I'll keep that in mind in the early era for now, good way to anchor a force...
    Last edited by Mangalore; December 12, 2006 at 09:32 AM.
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    Hex Khan's Avatar Oooooh Yeeeaah!!
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    Default Re: Schiltron, when and how to use?

    Personally i find it pity that units who form a rounded schiltrom cant form the spear wall, and vice versa. As an reenactor with a good few brutal fights behind me i'm trained in both techniques, and thatsjust doing the 1300s.
    Perhaps it would be unbalancing to have a unit able to perform both formtions.
    Spear Wall for armies equal to or smaller than your own, round schiltrom for armies larger than or by far more agile.
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    Civitate
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    Default Re: Schiltron, when and how to use?

    Esspecially as I think a Schiltron is just the defensive setup of a shield wall (which kind of is something like a battleformation for attack similar to a phalanx but using some different equipment)
    "Sebaceans once had a god called Djancaz-Bru. Six worlds prayed to her. They built her temples, conquered planets. And yet one day she rose up and destroyed all six worlds. And when the last warrior was dying, he said, 'We gave you everything, why did you destroy us?' And she looked down upon him and she whispered, 'Because I can.' "
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    Fabolous's Avatar Power breeds Arrogance
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    Default Re: Schiltron, when and how to use?

    Quote Originally Posted by Soryn Arkayn View Post
    The Schiltron formation would be more useful if it were accurately portrayed in M2:TW. The problem is that it's portrayed as a circle formation with pikes out so that it's protected on all sides, but that's not what it's supposed to be. A schiltron is basically like a Medieval phalanx formation, but it's strictly for defending against cavalry, which is why the pikes are pointed at three different height levels (to ensure that horses can't jump over the pikes). It wasn't a circle formation, or at least, it wasn't limited to a circle; I suppose if a single group of spearmen were surrounded by cavalry they'd adopt a circle formation, but more likely the cavalry would charge from one direction and the spearmen would face all of their spearheads in that direction.

    I don't know why CA decided to make it a circle formation, which is pretty much useless. My educated guess is that they didn't want the Schiltron criticized for being identical to the Phalanx formation from R:TW. Another possibility is that they knew a proper Schiltron would effectively neutralize cavalry, which would piss off players (expensive knights being slaughtered by cheap militia) so they intentionally made it less useful and less realistic.

    It an annoying and stupid decision, but hopefully it can be modded to a phalanx-style formation.

    I'm not exactly an expert, but I thought the schilitron didn't have a shape, so it wasn't always an echo of the phalanx though that is probably the most common use of it. However, I've certainly heard of the schilitron being circular. I believe it was by William Wallace, and that is doubtless the reason CA decided to depict it as such. Braveheart is the sexier option.

    Of course, RTW: BI had the schiltron as well, didn't it? Yea, I think it was circular then as well. Ah bother, they could have done something creative, instead they just made it a circle.
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    Hex Khan's Avatar Oooooh Yeeeaah!!
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    Default Re: Schiltron, when and how to use?

    well a schiltrom does translate as 'wall of spears', shiltrom, phalanx it all means the same thing a large grouping of soldiers.
    Too bad Brave heart gave the impression that he made it and it was a scottish tactic, considering its age and its far flung use its safe to say its not.
    Chances were it was Andrew Moray's plan to use a schiltrom at stirling, wallace got the reward coshe lived through it poor moray...
    back to the topic, the good old greek phalanx does exist in the game as spear wall, too bad its not as good
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    Rashka's Avatar Aoba
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    Default Re: Schiltron, when and how to use?

    Mel discoverd this formation while looking at tall trees. His initial tought was to simply put the English in the trees, but ultimatly he had to settle for "plan B" and bring the trees to the English. Lets give proper credit where its due mate!
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    Tankfriend's Avatar Equites Alares
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    Default Re: Schiltron, when and how to use?

    Schiltron is highly dangerous inside a forest. I lost half a unit of armored knights against a spear militia in schiltron-formation, just by charging at them, not even talking about fighting them...

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    davieholgate's Avatar Signifer
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    Default Re: Schiltron, when and how to use?

    Schiltrons were proved EXTREMELY effective during the Scottish wars of independence against englands far superior mounted units, Scotland lacked mounted units because only the warriors that could afford a horse or Nobles, could ride one.

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