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Thread: Saxon and Irish Kingdoms Army Preview

  1. #1
    AmericanCaesar's Avatar Laetus
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    Default Saxon and Irish Kingdoms Army Preview




    In this preview we are revealing the unit roster for the Saxon and Irish Kingdom Army factions. As has been mentioned in other posts, we're implementing a class-based system of recruitment that will put a greater emphasis on combined arms. Unlike the vanilla game, there are no unit upgrades that will make older units obsolete. From the beginning of the game until the end the player will need to have a mix of levy, noble and elite units in their armies if they expect to succeed. Similar to how unit sizes work in Warhammer, lowered tiered units will have more men than in the elite units. In most cases, the army composition will look something like this:


    100 men - Certain mob units like Thralls and Irish Bothacha Spearband
    80 - Most peasant melee units.
    60 - Most "professional" melee units like mercenaries or select fryd. Also select noble units.
    40 - Other noble units. Normans have 40 man cavalry and bowmen units. Irish have a 40 man Skirmisher.
    32-26 - Large cavalry units, like irish horse boys or cambrogi horse
    30 - Most factions levy bowmen, slingers. Generals.
    24 - Most cavalry units, most skirmisher units, most longbow units.
    20 - Most champions. Mounted Generals.
    16 - Hunters
    12 - Berserkers, Scout cavalry.


    In the vanilla game, the elite units have similar sizes compared to levy troops, thus barring the slower recruitment times for elite units, there are few reasons the player would ever need to field anything other than elite units. Fielding armies that are entirely comprised of elites is not the gameplay we want to implement in Shieldwall. A twelve man Berserkir squad can still deal A LOT of damage when used correctly, but you will still have to babysit them even when throwing them against levy troops. 12 versus 100 men are not good odds no matter the quality of the troops.


    Saxon Kingdoms:


    Generals:
    Hearrthweru - Informal Companions
    Huscarles - Formal Bodyguards


    Spears:
    Ceorl Spearband - Levy spears
    Fyrd Spearband - Warrior spears
    Select Fyrd Spearband - Unique unit of lesser thegns, acts as a quick reaction force to raids (Wessex only)
    Marcher Spearband - Unique border patrol spears, long marches (Mierce only)
    Thegn Spearband - Rich men warriors
    Garcempa Spearband - Spear champions (Mierce only)


    Swords:
    Langseax Warband - a better longer weaponized seax, younger men
    Thegn Swordband - Rich men warriors
    Sweordcempa Swordband - sword champion, inspires nearby units (Wessex only)


    Axes:
    Ceorl Axeband - Levy Axes
    Fyrd Axeband - Warrior Axes
    Butsecarls - Two-handed axe, foreign mercenary


    Archers:
    Ceorl Bowmen - Levy bowmen
    Fyrd Archers - Warrior Archers
    Select Fyrd Archers - Unique unit of lesser thegns, acts as a quick reaction force to raids (Wessex only)
    Marcher Archers - Unique border patrol archers, long marches (Mierce only)


    Skirmishers:
    Ceorl Skirmishers - Levy Skirmishers
    Fyrd Skirmishers - Warrior Skirmishers


    Cavalry:
    Scout Horsemen - mounted scouts provide sighting bonuses to your army
    Select Fyrd Horsemen - Unique unit of lesser thegns, acts as a quick reaction force to raids (Wessex only)
    Marcher Horsemen - Unique mounted border patrol, long marches (Mierce only)
    Thegn Horsemen - Rich men warriors


    Artillery:
    Catapult


    Some units will also have special abilities attached to them to make them actually useful to have in an army, for example scouts will give a boost to line of sight and campaign movement. Hunters will provide a boost to supplies so they will be useful to have in an army especially in enemy territory. So as you can see units will play more of an important role and you will have more versatility with a balanced build.

    A few images of the new units:




    Sweordcempa Swordband - Sword Champion of Wessex. There's a few new things to take note of here. Please notice the darker chainmail colors, this will likely be implemented throughout all of the rosters as a point of historical accuracy since we felt the originals were too bright. Also please notice that faint outline of wood planks in the round shields. All of our shields will have something similar to this to better reflect leather skins being tightly stretched over wood planks with an uneven flush.
    Spoiler Alert, click show to read: 




    Ceorl Spearband - Levy spears
    Spoiler Alert, click show to read: 




    Thegn Horsemen
    Spoiler Alert, click show to read: 



    Wessex Battle Lines:
    Spoiler Alert, click show to read: 



    Mierce Battle Lines:
    Spoiler Alert, click show to read: 





    Irish Kingdoms:


    Generals:
    Deaisbard - Foot Swords
    Riglach - Mounted Household Elites


    Spears:
    Bothacha Spearband - Levy Spears
    Ceithrenn Spearband - Warrior Spears
    Airig Spearband - Lesser Nobles equipped with heavy throwing spears


    Swords:
    Fianna Band - Short swords, Fenian Cycle
    Airig Swordband - Nobles fighting on foot, short swords
    Caur - Hero Sword Unit, carries a big pictish blade, inspired by the Hound of Ulster


    Axes:
    Bothacha Axeband - Levy Axes
    Ceithrenn Axeband - Warrior Axes
    Tuagh Catha Warband - Light Two-handed Axes


    Slingers:
    Bogclochdair - Slingers recruited from local husbandmen


    Skirmishers:
    Ceithrenn Skirmishers - Irish Kerns
    Ceithrenn Coille - Elite Skirmishers, similar to the finian band (of skirmishing)


    Cavalry:
    Scout Horsemen - Scout Skirmishers
    Marcalaidhi (Horse Boys) - Fastest cav in the game equipped with javelins
    Airig Horsmen - Mounted Nobles


    Artillery:
    Catapult



    A few images of the new units:




    Caur - Hero Sword unit with his big ass pictish blade, notice his cool Hound of Ulster shield
    Spoiler Alert, click show to read: 




    Ceithrenn Coille - Elite Skirmishers
    Spoiler Alert, click show to read: 




    Airig Horsmen - Household Elites
    Spoiler Alert, click show to read: 



    Mide Battle Lines:
    Spoiler Alert, click show to read: 



    Shieldwall Discord


    If you guys like what you see feel free to join our public discord server and weigh in on different topics.
    https://discord.gg/WRCvyu

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Saxon and Irish Kingdoms Army Preview

    This looks very nice. I'm mainly interested in the Irish which I will be playing with. I'm sure I will struggle with the not-so-good battle line abilities, as I'm more a defensive player, but we will see.

    Frankly said, I only bought ToB after I saw this mod announced. With one of the features of ToB most annoying to me, the art-of-the-time unit and character cards, your mod will not deal with, but the rest sounds so good.

    Some questions about the unit balancing. In vanilla axes seemingly are advertised as counter to sword units which I find rather odd. Even if both are shielded, an axeman would not have such a good time against the longer and faster sword. The armor piercing qualities of small axes are also exaggerated quite often in TW, even in good mods. Maybe it's necessary for gameplay diversity (and much too much armor everywhere) but should not be overdone, as Shieldwall fortunately seems to reduce the armor ratio.

    The only part of the description of Shieldwall which makes me a bit uncomfortable, is that about spears, being more a defensive weapon. On what is this based? A spear is quite a good offensive weapon, possibly more offensive than a sword. It is not as easy to defend with a spear than it is with the more versatile sword. The best defense of a spear is the offense, to hit at range. So i hope the RPS system is not so determining in Shieldwall, to the extend that frontal sword against spear would be autowin.

  3. #3
    Kinjo's Avatar Taiko
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    Default Re: Saxon and Irish Kingdoms Army Preview

    Thanks for the reply geala, as for spears I would think about them as far as the mod is concerned as a weapon of attrition. They won't steam roll units but they stall the battle line by creating a no-mans-land and will chew up units over time. We are huge fans of Wolin and I have done some SCA battles so it is based off of personal experience. That said we still have to try to make the battles interesting which can vary on a player to player basis.

    Basically this is what I'm talking about with spears creating a no-mans-land and stalling the battle.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lTWS5TojPc4

  4. #4

    Default Re: Saxon and Irish Kingdoms Army Preview

    Great work! Im waiting for this mod for a Saxon and Sea Kings replay!

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Saxon and Irish Kingdoms Army Preview

    Now that I reread, I have a question to the fianna. You wrote "Fenian Cycle", what do you mean with it? The stories of this tradition are semi-legendary at best, and in my opinion don't give a very reliable picture of what the fianna possibly was.

    I think the fianna was a cultural institution not only for the Irish but also found in other Celtic societies and dating back to pre-Roman times. The main reason was the expulsion of youths from the normal households after getting 15 years old, so they founded "youth gangs", consisting of people between 15 and about 20 years, mostly males. Such groups, made mainly of wild young men during their most aggressive phase, in countries without very developed security infrastructures, must have been a nightmare quite often. On the other hand they could have been rather useful during conflicts, and a base for warrior training.

    I would simulate the fianna as lightly armed, unarmored, very fast, high damage, high attack, low discipline, low morale unit of beardless longhaired guys.

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