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(TFT) TFT Cavalry part 3

A little bit more about fighting on horseback.

"The rider on a horse can occupy either of the animals hexes. During the movement phase, his counter is placed in whichever of the two hexes it is to occupy that turn, vaced in any way (except backwards) the player wishes. The rider remains in that hex of his beast, with that facing, until the next turn, when he may again move. This represents the rider's ability to lean diverent ways in the stirrups, guide his animal to one side, etc, and is an important advantage of a rider. "...A rider may be tied to the saddle to make sure he won't fall off if he becomes unconscious - but he then loses the ablility to lean into different hexes."

A user mentioned leaning when he was discussing cavalry attacks. Now I know what he meant. Say, if you tie a non-Horseman talent person into his seat, he may still suffer -3DX in combat, but at least he won't have to roll for falling.

"If a rider takes 8 hits in one turn (enough to knowck him down if he were standing), he will fall from his mount. "A rider may also be pulled from his mount by enemies on the ground; this is the bane of the mounted knight or cavalryman. To help pull a rider down, a foe must (a) be on the ground adjacent to the rider, and (b) make a 6-die roll on his combined ST and DX. Pulling at a rider IS an attack, and is treated as one, except for the special 6-Die roll. HTH combat skill helps neither party in this situation. "An ordinary rider can be unseated by one figure making a successful 6-die ST+DX roll. A figure with the Horseman talent cannot be unseated unless TWO figures successfully pull at him _in the same turn_; he falls when the second one makes his successful roll. An expert Horseman does not fall until THREE figures successfully pull at him in the same turn."

I think there was a discussion many many months back about using special weapons (I think they are Bill Hooks, Catch Poles...) to unseat horsemen. Surely a special tool like this would add bonuses to unseat the horseman.

What happens if you hit the rider with a trip spell, will he fall off the horse?

So that 10 Lancers vs. 25 polemen; some of them should be working perhaps to unseat the horsemen once engaged.

"...Falling causes injury. A vertical fall does 1 die damage for every 5 meters you fell. If you are wearing any kind of armor (regardless of type) it will stop 2 hits of this damage." UNDER HORSEMANSHIP TALENT IN ITL IT SAYS "A fall from a horse does (1-2) damage."

I would say falling damage from a horse then is 1-2 with chain or above only stopping 2 hits.

So if you pull a rider from his horse, depending on how he came down, he could be injured as well.

AM Page 31  PANIC
"Any riding animal may panic except (a) one ridden by an Expert Horseman, (b) one with an IQ of 7 or better, or (c) one fully trained for war. When a riding animal is wounded, its rider must make a 3-die roll against his own IQ to keep it from panicking (2 dice if he's a Horseman). If the animal panics, roll 1 die to determine what it does:
 "1,2 - run at full speed away from the fight/source of injury.
 "3 - beserk.  No longer under rider's control, just like human beserk.
 "4 - run blindly into enemy at full speed, not attacking.
 "5 - stand stock still for 1 turn - roll for further reatction next turn.
"6 - try to throw its rider(s). A Horseman must make a 3-die roll vs. DX each turn to hang on. A non-Horseman must make a 4-die roll vs. DX.

So another thing those Polemen vs. Lancers could do is try and scare the mounts. Pour some oil in front of them and light it just before the riders hit the line. Animals fear fire. It may cause a reaction roll. Also, if you attack the mount, there is a chance it will flee. Stab at the mount too!

Lastly, what about the shear urge to bash through the lines regardless of your weapons...

"The "shield-rush" (slamming your shield into your foe in order to knock him over) is an important tacktic in some kinds of combat. "The Shield-rush is considred an attack for all purposes; that is, you can strike with the shield as a charge attack or regular attack. If you rush with the shield, you may not also strike with a weapon. "In order to make a shield-rush, you must have a shield ready. Make your attack by rolling as usual. If you fail to make your "to hit" roll, nothing happens. If you DO make your roll, your ENEMY must now make a saving roll to stay afoot. "To stay afoot after being hit with a shield rush, your foe must make a saving roll against his adjDX. If the figure who hit him is AS STRONG or STRONGER, this is a regular 3-die roll. However, if the figure who hit him is WEAKER, only TWO dice are rolled. Since it is fairly easy to roll your adjDX or less on two dice, a shield rush by a weaker figure is not too dangerous. A figure which fails to roll its adjDX or less immediately falls down. "When comparing strengths for a shield-rush, use original ST, not wounded ST. Also, not that a rush against a figure more than twice your ST will have no effect. Shield rushing a giant is pointless."

Would a horse in barding qualify for a shield bash? What about getting the horse to leap over the standing victim. If the horse didn't make it and hit the victim, would that qualify as a shield bash?

Here are some things The Fantasy Trip has to say about resulting combat with horse/riders.

[At this moment, as I am editing this, I realize it should have gone into the section on movement. Oh well.]
"Since a multi-hex figure must be in a front hex of TWO small figures to be engaged, it does NOT stop movement if it enters a front hex of a single one-hex figure. It DOES have to stop as soon as it occupies two at once, thus becoming engaged - and even then, it is allowed to move one more hex to push the small figures back - see below.

"...A multi-hex figure also moves only one hex when it shifts. However, the shift may carry it onto one or more one-hex figures and/or away from one-hex figures with which it was engaged."

This means that the charging horse rams the line during movement and then immediately push the victim as well OR it can shift in such a way as to disengage, etc. Thus it can break a line by craking the line or trampling.

"...A multi-hex figure (a giant, dragon, [horse]) may end its movement, or take its "shift" by "pushing back" any number of one-hex figures, as long as the combined ST (at the moment) of the figures being pushed back is less than that of the figure doing the pushing. The large figure moves one hex and stops; no figure can be pushed back more than one hex per turn. The small figure(s) that it moved onto must immediately make a saving roll: 3 dice against DX. If they succeed, they step to any adjacent hex and may act normally that turn. If they fail, they FALL in any adjacent hex and may do nothing else that turn. If a small figure has no adjacent empty hex to step to, a large figure may not move onto it to push it back. "A multi-hex figure may push back small figures either at the end of its regular move (even if that move engaged it with them) or by shifting onto them while engaged. "... Once a large figure is on top of a smaller one, he may attempt to trample it. This is an attack, and is covered under "Trampling." The figure underfoot may attempt to crawl out during his movement phase, or may declare himself to be in hand-to-hand combat withthe larger figure and start stabbing."

The larger of the Draft or Warhorses have enough strength to push two goodsized fighters. From what I also get out of this, a horse can move onto a figure even if it is stationary. This is awesome power.

"When a large figure overruns a smaller one, the small figure is considered to be lying on the ground under the larger one, and may be trampled. Whether the small figure is actually trampled depends on luck, and the relative DX of the two figures. "Suppose that a giant [substitute warhorse] has just advanced into Eric to push him back. Eric misses his saving roll and falls underfoot. When his own turn to act comes, Eric can do one of two things. He can declare himself in HTH combat with the warhorse, and try to hit him or draw his dagger . . . or he can try to roll out from under. To roll out from under, he must make his DX roll on 3 dice. He is picking the "stand" option. If he make this roll, he rolls to the nearest open hex and stands. If no hex is open within 3 hexes, he may not attempt to roll out from under. If he misses the roll, he is still lying on the floor. "The warhorse, of course, will try to trample Eric. When the warhorse's turn to act comes, he rolls 3 dice. If Eric is still lying on the floor, and the warhorse makes his DX roll, Eric takes (1+1) damage, or 2 dice if the warhorse has more than 3 times his ST. If the warhorse misses the roll, his stomp misses Eric. "The attempt to trample is essentially a "free" attack on any enemy underfoot. A large figure can trample its foes, regardless of what else it is doing, and suffer no DX penalty. "...A figure does NOT get a +4 DX when attempting to trample a figure on the ground. Stomping someone without losing your own balance requires attention (If you roll a 17 or 18 while attempting to trampl, YOU fall down!)

I'm not sure how the damage of (1+1) wor 2 dice was determined. Anybody know? This means that if you have a warhorse, you can charge attack, push, trample, and then force retreat if you win? Impressive.

"#5 FORCE RETREATS. Any figure which inflicted hits on an enemy with a PHYSICAL attack (staff, wolf bites, etc.) and took no hits itself that turn (from any source) may retreat that enemy one hex in any direction to any vacant hex and EITHER advance to the hex vacated by the enemy OR stand still (thus possibly becoming disengaged). Magical attacks, missile and thrown weapons, etc. do NOT allow you to force a retreat."

I think this means that the attacker chooses which hex to put the victim. So if your intent is strictly to charge through, push that victim away to disingage, then next turn if you move first, your mount is through and gone.

Well thats about all of it.

I thank the gamers to playtested all those combinations of cavalry charges. I did not see anything in the three books (ITL, AM, AW) about non-stirrupped riders. That WOULD make a difference in the stats of the weapons damages. Also, it would influence any Caveman games like Micheals if they use horses.

Hail Melee

John Paul

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