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Y'he Sha'is
08-08-2011, 13:32
I've been thinking a lot about the bretonnian lance formation, and, while being really fluffy and rather interesting to see on the table, it doesn't really seem to do that much for me in game.

So I was thinking about perhaps running my horses in both lance formation and sometimes in regular 2x formation, but I wanted to get the thoughts of warseer first to make sure I'm not messing anything up.

In general, i find there to be a lot of ranked infantry floating around, and usually in builds like 5x6 or more, or elite infantry in builds of 7x3 or whatnot. So, for my comparison, I thought about a unit of 3x5 KoTR vs say 7x2 KoTR, against a unit of humans 5x6. The lance formation has a total of 12 attacks from the knights, and 3 attacks from the horses; the line has 14 attacks from the knights, 7 from the horses, so it seems like it will do more damage (on average).

Obviously the lance formation, with its 3 wide format will take less hits back if going against enemy groups wider than 5, but otherwise they are exactly the same. Multiple charges are easier with the smaller frontage of the lance formation. The Lance also has a huge flank (which I tend to find to be an issue with countercharges), while the line tends to have a large front (which I tend not to be an issue for manuevering).

So what am I missing? Is the lance primarily just to get some extra ranks to try to break steadfast more quickly, and to possibly get some multiple charges in? Also to protect the casters, and maybe mitigate some damage if there are large units of elite infantry? While the wide front is just to cause as much damage as possible? I tend to find that brets win the battle when they charged in, but seldom break the larger enemy blocks because of steadfast, and after that they tend to chip away at each other, and I wonder if the larger number of attacks is beneficial.

Just my thoughts for the weekend. Can anyone shed some light on this topic?

theunwantedbeing
08-08-2011, 14:03
The lance was primarily to deal as much damage on the charge as possible by getting lots of extra attacks.
Now in 8th edition it's more useful in overcoming the enemy rank count to negate their steadfast.

You need to take maximum size units of 15 or so to really get the benefit of the lance.

hamsterwheel
08-08-2011, 16:53
I've been thinking a lot about the bretonnian lance formation, and, while being really fluffy and rather interesting to see on the table, it doesn't really seem to do that much for me in game.

So I was thinking about perhaps running my horses in both lance formation and sometimes in regular 2x formation, but I wanted to get the thoughts of warseer first to make sure I'm not messing anything up.

In general, i find there to be a lot of ranked infantry floating around, and usually in builds like 5x6 or more, or elite infantry in builds of 7x3 or whatnot. So, for my comparison, I thought about a unit of 3x5 KoTR vs say 7x2 KoTR, against a unit of humans 5x6. The lance formation has a total of 12 attacks from the knights, and 3 attacks from the horses; the line has 14 attacks from the knights, 7 from the horses, so it seems like it will do more damage (on average).

Obviously the lance formation, with its 3 wide format will take less hits back if going against enemy groups wider than 5, but otherwise they are exactly the same. Multiple charges are easier with the smaller frontage of the lance formation. The Lance also has a huge flank (which I tend to find to be an issue with countercharges), while the line tends to have a large front (which I tend not to be an issue for manuevering).

So what am I missing? Is the lance primarily just to get some extra ranks to try to break steadfast more quickly, and to possibly get some multiple charges in? Also to protect the casters, and maybe mitigate some damage if there are large units of elite infantry? While the wide front is just to cause as much damage as possible? I tend to find that brets win the battle when they charged in, but seldom break the larger enemy blocks because of steadfast, and after that they tend to chip away at each other, and I wonder if the larger number of attacks is beneficial.

Just my thoughts for the weekend. Can anyone shed some light on this topic?

I don't have my Bret book with me but I'm pretty sure that horses and riders in the LANCE formation get to make their attacks so your 3x5 unit would have 12 attacks from the knights and 11 attacks from the horses, not to mention it would remove steadfast alot faster than a 7x2 unit.

Y'he Sha'is
08-08-2011, 17:45
OK, regardless of the horse attacks (although they could potentially make up the difference), it seems the real logic to it is to remove steadfast a bit more quickly by having more ranks.

Just mathhammering 15 knights in lance vs 30 spearmen, the knights kill about 7 or so, and lose 1 or so, which means the turn after the first they should be removing steadfast (which is about correct for my fights). The 2x wide unit kills a couple more (8-9), which doesn't really help all that much.

The minor decrease in combat potential is mitigated by the ranks and ability to remove steadfast. That's pretty much what I expected, but I wanted to make sure there wasn't something else I wasn't seeing.

russellmoo
09-08-2011, 06:49
The benefit to running a unit outside of lance formation is best used in the case of questing knights-

KE or KoR you will want to keep in lance formation- as after the lance hits, there is little benefit to a regular formation vs the lance-

Questing knights are a slightly different story- you may want to position them in a 6x2 formation you can then use them as an anvil against certain units- have them rush forward, and angle themselves to absorb a charge, and allow for a unit of KE or KoR to flank charge-

Outside of this- the only other situation where you won't want to be in a lance is against an army with multiple cannons- (those cannonballs could potentially cut through an entire lance, and don't even consider what a Warp lightning cannon will do)

Against these opponents you will want to start your units in 2 ranks, or less just in case your opponent gets the first turn-

Tuttivillus
09-08-2011, 21:42
No, exept those additional horse attacks, which are allowed, you are not missing anythig. Use the lance formation, it is the ultimate weapon against steadfast, and belive me, as an Empire player i do envy you that possibility:) russellmoo is right, questing knights would be noble exception to this rule. About worying on flank coutercharge - if u would use 7*2 formation u would get stuck for longer, and even shorter flank wouldn't prevent you from receiving one.

arthurfallz
10-08-2011, 14:39
In 8th, the Lance is great for hitting with a massive crush, possibly even with two units of Knights, winning the combat (because the ranks are easier), and then reforming to add models in the front. Because after the charge those Bret Knights are reduced to WS 4 S3 fighters with hand weapons and the nice armour saves... and that's it.

Don't forget all the front and outside horses get to attack on the charge turn too.

Y'he Sha'is
10-08-2011, 15:16
Ah, that's something I hadn't thought of. You can reform after you land a charge into the wider formation if you think it's necessary, and given the damage the lance does on a charge you probably won't even need a leadership check!

Thanks for bringing that up.