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Everyone talks about using screens for expensive troops or big blocks of infantry or what have you....however, i really dont understand how this works...wouldnt the screening unit just end up blocking your charges when the time comes that you want to throw that scary unit into combat? how do you get them out of the way in time? any advice out there for how to deal with screens as well, while were at it?
Screens can be very handy but you have hit one of the problems. They can get in the way if you don't plan your movements well.
I use them against in a couple of ways. With Empire they work really well.
1. Use detachments to screen against shooting. As detachments don't cause panic in friendly troops they are perfect for this. By the time you get to charge they are dead, so rarely an issue. The best way to get them out of the way is to declare a charge with them also.
2. Speed bump. Have your parent unit with 2 detachments. One out front. A big powerful unit charges in and wipes the floor with the detachment. They overrun into your parent unit. Next turn you hit their flank with your other detachment. Suddenly the odds are in your favour.
so the screens are mainly used to prevent yourself from being charged rather than for when you are planning to advance?
It really depends on the opponent.
I find that my Empire troops tend to get charged, rather than charging so it works for me.