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In the Napoleonic days there was a big debate between the commanders of European armies as to whether troops should form ranks in Column (deep) or Line (wide). Each formation has advantages and disadvantages - for example it is easier to manoeuvre a troop unit formed in Column but a unit in Line can draw on more fire power across a wider front.
In general, the British fought in Line whilst the French fought in Column and, I believe, this was one of the key factors the Allies had in their favour against the French at Waterloo.
My question is simpler though. Is it better, within the WFB rules, to set up larger units of say, Goblins, Skaven, or Noblars (though it could be any unit) into formations in Colum or Line?
I usually deploy my 3 (large) Night Goblin units in column 9 figures wide and 5 figures deep (ranks). I often lose or draw and when I win it is usually either the fault of my opponent or some spectacular dice roll in the magic phase.
I just wondered if I was missing a trick by not fighting in column as most people seem to do.
Last edited by Warboss; May 16th, 2008 at 17:26.
It all depends on the unit type. Spearmen are optimal at probably 7 wide, as most opponents are 5 wide, then a central charge ill maximise Spear attacks.
For most cheap infantry, once you get past 5x5 it doesnt really mater, although considering extra men onto hat, in extra ranks they just provide more wounds. However in extra Columns, they also provide an extra attack, as well as the wounds.
Its all down to personal preference really.
How are your NGs armed? Id say theyre best to go with HW/S/LA and go 6 wide (with nets, music and a fanatic) and 5 deep. get yourself some more units on the table that way.
9 in front is rediculous. That unit get's multi charged all the time. NG's being horrible fighters will get so many wounds put on them that they won't be albe to make it up.
In short a general rule...
The worse the fighters the less you want in the fight because that means the more of a better fighter you opponet gets. Unless ofcourse you can get an advantage by flank/rear charging.
BTW 45 NG's in a unit is about 2x's too much. Cut it down to about 25 a unit. The NG's need to gang up opponets by multi charging not by having soooooo many in one unit.
Well i'd be seriously suprised if he didn't get outnumber and rank bonus unlesshe gets flanked/reared . . . now if only it was unbreakable then id be a very good tarpit
The Old Ones have not forgotten me!
I'm with kbolster. With a weak unit like Night Goblins, you're mainly looking for their rank bonus and hoping to get some meatier units into the battle alongside them, like orcs, or even flanking wolves or spiders. You're not looking for the NG to produce a lot of kills. I'd keep them 5 wide and 5 or 6 deep to make sure I kept a rank bonus once combat ensues.