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5/77 Armd
2nd Jun 2005, 14:43
I cannot get over how overpowered the thug battalions (militia) are. I am now finally mopping up after an extremely draining war as France versus Spain, Britain and Morroco. The "Spanish ulcer" has finally been defeated and annexed by me. I did take Ryoken's advice initially, and I think some good will come of it. I concentrated on completing as many quests as possible and of course while I was building up my economy, Britain annexed Hannover and Portugal. So I declared war on them, liberated Hannover and then turned my attention to Spain since they and Morroco allied with Britain. However, I could not bring myself to let go of Spain, it was too big a prize and I did not want them to annoy me later, so I annexed them. Now it's on to liberating Portugal and hopefully a close to this dibilitating war.

Which brings me to my point: The main reason the war has been so draining on me, is that I had under-estimated the club wielding wild men (with crossbelts???-maybe the crossbelts hold the ammo for reloading their sticks.) The enemy has been attacking me with masses of these troops and they have decimated my well trained professional army. Why are they so strong and have the same melee attack strength that men with muskets and bayonets have? I have had practically no opportunity to conduct true Napoleonic tactics since the gorillas just charge me. I get off two shots if I'm lucky, then my infantry lines simply rush at them to their doom. They almost always lose since I am so outnumbered. It's very discouraging to say the least. I have just started making up my "New Model Army" to incorporate about 1/3 hillbilly thug units; they should make nice cannon fodder and hopefully neutralize the enemy's hillbillys. If anyone's got any other suggestions or comments about this, I'd be happy to hear them. Hopefully they will lower their power a little in a patch, I'm not holding my breath though.

Added:
Looking a little further on some threads, I've found some people have really found success using only "large angry mob" armies. Even though I'll hate doing it, I may have to revert to a limited form of this if I keep getting mobbed by these types of units. I hate losing experienced fusilier units to hordes of militia. I got this Napoleonic tactics game to play Napoleonic tactics, not to do a 19th century version of Command & Conquer style tank rush.

Ryoken
2nd Jun 2005, 15:55
This is precisely my complaint about militia. Well written.

In my AAR (first post should be up this afternoon), you will see how I have basically just avoided all land battles and won the "war of maneuver". I am playing as England, so I cannot even match the thug horde with my own. I am not letting my precious riflemen be beaten to death by stick-weilding peasants!

colmde
2nd Jun 2005, 16:35
Maybe we need a definitive answer from the developers, but I am sure that the militia are wielding swords, not sticks... :-)

In which case, I think they are just the right power... Not as strong as bayonet-wielding line-infantry, but the infantry would have had the training.

5/77 Armd
2nd Jun 2005, 16:57
Even if they are carrying swords, it shouldn't matter. A peasant army armed with rudimentary weapons such as pitch forks, clubs and knives just cannot stand up to professional soldiers. They aren't trained, they have low morale etc. It's ridiculous to suggest that their current strength on the battlefield is realistic. Before anyone brings this up: you can't compare the Bastille storming to this argument either, the soldiers were severly outnumbered and had the support of some regular soldiers and artillery. Not to mention the persuasive power of the guillitine! Besides all this, I don't want battles to be determined by masses of monkeys flying at each other.

All of us that play this game have an intense interest in this era of warfare, and have probably been waiting for a game of this sort to come out for some time. This era of warfare was truly a spectacle. The uniforms, smoke, drums beating and bagpipes sounding. The meticulous advance of infantry in line formation. Look at an aerial depiction of two grand armies drawing together! And it's all ruined because of the steroid enhanced thugs that change the entire aspect of a battle.

If anything, they should have comparable stats of that of the light barbarian units in RTW. They were a nuisance easily dispatched by professional legionaires. This would perhaps lower nations' desire to mass produce these units.

Added:

My first army, which was wiped out by four militia army groups (including one lancer and one fusilier) consisted of:
2 Voltigeurs
6 Fusiliers
1 Hussar

btw, how come the AI gets to move 4 armies to a territory?

Now after all this fighting, all I have is (unit names for fun):
3rd Voltigeurs - 15 men
7th Fusiliers - 60 men
2nd Hussars - 23 men
3rd Light Hillbilly Regiment (Queen's Own)
4th Hillbilly Guards Regiment (Buffs)
5th Grenadier Hillbillys (Royals)

All right, I'm done complaining....

joxer31
2nd Jun 2005, 20:33
The strength of the militia does appear to be inflated beyond what they should be. I would have to create armies of militia and return to RTW tatics to win battles just to protect my "professional" soldiers.

The nice thing is that the AI does eventually stop building militia units once they have researched better units and built the necessary buildings.

5/77 Armd
2nd Jun 2005, 20:39
That's quite a relief, thanks for the info. I don't play multi-player, but I wonder if there's a problem with players using "mob" tactics there, or if it's even tolerated.

Thrust123
2nd Jun 2005, 21:18
I am learning to use the militia precisely as CANNON FODDER.
Since my artillery is always vulnerable to the enemies cavalry or even other militias charges, there's nothoing best to stop their charge by a conter charge with my cheap militia.
While they are engaged meleeing each other, I can fire my cannons at the mass and even if that means destroying my own militia at least I might save my cannons.

But yes, this issue of militia is one where the issue of lack of a morale system is mostly highlighted. I am sure that a group of militia charging a well trained batallion of fusilers would rout after the first volley or two, but here they just keep charging no matter what...

Isledall
2nd Jun 2005, 21:25
4 units can be moved to a terretory for attack.. 4th one will be reserve..

militia is a pain in TECH 1....
use your horses to chop them down...
as in TECH 1 horses rule the battlefield.. even your troops will die from a charge....

now comes TECH 2 .. bye bye milita.. bye bye supreme horse....
infantry now fires with TWO rows... and can form squares...
no militia can defeat an normally trained unit now...


try this if you do not believe me.. go for quick batttle.. get 2 inf units for defence.. buy the upgrades then give the attacker all militia or inf (something like 8 units or whatever) .. order your inf into square and just wait for the results...

militia hehe... just a unit of men waiting to be slaughtered

Ryoken
3rd Jun 2005, 19:29
I have found that militia are best killed in the following manner.

Wait for them to attack you. Use a howitzer to draw their attention if they are defending and you have one. If not, creep forward until they charge. Keep your line infantry in front and light infantry behind. Cav on the side. The Militia will charge, your lines will open fire, they will start to die.

Having two lines of infantry, the second being more powerful, really cripples them. Especially if you are in an elevated position. When they finally reach your lines, order your cav to mass attack them on their flanks while the line infantry charges into melee across the full line.

If you have cannon, great; I am assuming none or only a few.

Ryoken
3rd Jun 2005, 19:57
Maybe we need a definitive answer from the developers, but I am sure that the militia are wielding swords, not sticks... :-)

In which case, I think they are just the right power... Not as strong as bayonet-wielding line-infantry, but the infantry would have had the training.

http://img90.echo.cx/img90/2697/batavia20by.jpg

As this image from my AAR CLEARLY SHOWS, they are wielding sticks.

KiloAlpha4
4th Jun 2005, 08:25
Well the simplest way to deal with them I found was to use thugs against thugs and also cannon. With the advent of the 6 pounder , a row of 4 are devistating and the 12 pounders more so. I too found the thugs were too powerful especially if they go into a structure you occupy vs infantry to have better armor and even or better melee combat rating...why ? but any how, I use , early campaign, thugs for atleast 3 batallions, then infantry and cannon but no cavalry until grenadiers are available. The thugs I initially use early campaign vs other thugs while my musket weilding troops shoot them from close proximity safely and any arty pounded them before they came close to my lines (initial howlitzers). My thugs serve as fodder to hold up the other thugs while they are picked off and because they are fairly cheap units to recruit en mass. Once I have 6 pounders a row of 3 to 4 takes care of their thugs quite adequately and my thugs engage any of their charging cavalry and tie them up while my musket weilding soldiers shoot the hell out of them. I found this is the best way to use thugs then to drop them once grenadiers and 12 pounders are buildable because the 12 pounders take care of all enemy units especially if you have 6 or more ( I usually have atleast 5 ). I have found that they devistate any approaching army and they almost always retreat or face anihilation.

Ryoken
4th Jun 2005, 19:12
Double Line Formation helps a lot too.

Cappadocian
4th Jun 2005, 20:15
Once you can form the square formation the militia men are completely useless.

Sithaka
4th Jun 2005, 23:57
As this image from my AAR CLEARLY SHOWS, they are wielding sticks.
however their cost doesnt really reflect that they should have sticks. They are 3/4th the cost of line infantry, I would expect them to be decent fighters for that price. Off course the price of militia and their melee strength should be decreased if you want them to reflect being just a peasant army.
At the moment I just see them as semi trained soldiers with only melee weapons (as their cost really doesnt reflect them to be people just plucked from the streets and then send of to fight directly).

OracleX
6th Jun 2005, 04:10
This is just one instance of showcasing the absolute stupidity of not including morale factors. Having every unit fight to the death is simply ridiculous and negates the point of using tactics.

vortexdr1
6th Jun 2005, 15:34
Yeah I agree they are way way overpowered atleast early game no clue how this got past playtesting or how come QA didnt raise Hell considering that Millitia in real wars never was able to stand up to a profesional army.

Thing is it gets okay once you move to tech 2 problem for me was by the time most other nations where in tech 2 i was already to big and they didnt advance fast enough. And well the AI builds far to many cannons. I have compleated 1 game now startign the 2nd.

Thing is the average army i had to fight for the entire first game basically consisted of Millitia, Howitzers and some cav.
I can count the times i actually saw musket wielding troops on a napoleonic battlefield. i don't think to much testing was done in regards ot what the AI builds....Simply for the fact that 70% of their army should consist of troops armed with a musket but at this time you are lucky if they have one regiment of normal infantry for every 3 Howwitzers....

Strumm
6th Jun 2005, 17:13
I think I must be playing a different game. Thug Battalions can be tricky because there are so many of them - but they're not 'super'.

Even before you develop infantry squares or 2-line volleys, try positioning your infantry in lines one in front of the other with a reasonable gap between them. Once your first infantry battalion has given a volley pull them back behind the others you've already positioned. No more thugs, and no significant friendly-fire casualities that I've noticed. Just make sure that you don't let the thugs get so close that your infantry engages in melee, and remember to set them to run not walk.

If the numbers of thugs against you are too large for this to work, simply draw some of them off on a wild goose chase with some cav first. Even a badly depleted cav unit can do this.

Yes, it's micromanagement - and yes, it sometimes requires fast thinking - but then that's war for you!

Lt. Kyuzo
6th Jun 2005, 18:12
Now i admit i havent yet got the game (should be here tomorow yey!) but wouldnt an easy way of dispatching these units be a few artillery pieces on them sort these units out?

5/77 Armd
6th Jun 2005, 20:22
The militia units only pose a problem towards the beginning of the campaign when you don't yet have the technology to manufacture artillery. After getting some cav later on, the militia are pretty useless. The only thing they're (somewhat) useful for later on is tying up units. e.g. If enemy cavalry is charging your line, a militia unit stationed behind your infantry can be sent through your lines to delay the charge while you pick 'em off. (Haven't tried this yet, but I think it'll work.)

Sithaka
7th Jun 2005, 00:42
The militia units only pose a problem towards the beginning of the campaign when you don't yet have the technology to manufacture artillery. After getting some cav later on, the militia are pretty useless. The only thing they're (somewhat) useful for later on is tying up units. e.g. If enemy cavalry is charging your line, a militia unit stationed behind your infantry can be sent through your lines to delay the charge while you pick 'em off. (Haven't tried this yet, but I think it'll work.)
except later it would be better to use line infantry for that, seeing as they melee better, can shoot aswell and only cost a little more.

Eggbath
8th Jun 2005, 10:33
I cannot get over how overpowered the thug battalions (militia) are. I am now finally mopping up after an extremely draining war as France versus Spain, Britain and Morroco. The "Spanish ulcer" has finally been defeated and annexed by me. I did take Ryoken's advice initially, and I think some good will come of it. I concentrated on completing as many quests as possible and of course while I was building up my economy, Britain annexed Hannover and Portugal. So I declared war on them, liberated Hannover and then turned my attention to Spain since they and Morroco allied with Britain. However, I could not bring myself to let go of Spain, it was too big a prize and I did not want them to annoy me later, so I annexed them. Now it's on to liberating Portugal and hopefully a close to this dibilitating war.

Which brings me to my point: The main reason the war has been so draining on me, is that I had under-estimated the club wielding wild men (with crossbelts???-maybe the crossbelts hold the ammo for reloading their sticks.) The enemy has been attacking me with masses of these troops and they have decimated my well trained professional army. Why are they so strong and have the same melee attack strength that men with muskets and bayonets have? I have had practically no opportunity to conduct true Napoleonic tactics since the gorillas just charge me. I get off two shots if I'm lucky, then my infantry lines simply rush at them to their doom. They almost always lose since I am so outnumbered. It's very discouraging to say the least. I have just started making up my "New Model Army" to incorporate about 1/3 hillbilly thug units; they should make nice cannon fodder and hopefully neutralize the enemy's hillbillys. If anyone's got any other suggestions or comments about this, I'd be happy to hear them. Hopefully they will lower their power a little in a patch, I'm not holding my breath though.

Added:
Looking a little further on some threads, I've found some people have really found success using only "large angry mob" armies. Even though I'll hate doing it, I may have to revert to a limited form of this if I keep getting mobbed by these types of units. I hate losing experienced fusilier units to hordes of militia. I got this Napoleonic tactics game to play Napoleonic tactics, not to do a 19th century version of Command & Conquer style tank rush.
Go to Square Formation they cannot destroy you and you fire on them at will.

5/77 Armd
8th Jun 2005, 12:42
The thing is, (on my easy campaign which is the only one I've beaten) militia only posed a problem early in the game when I don't have square formation available.

Lt. Kyuzo
8th Jun 2005, 17:29
Well ive now got the game (very good game btw :)) and i have had no problems with milita at all, my line infantry and even my light infantry can beat them without two line firing, i held off an attack of three milita regiments with only one regiment of light infantry granted this was in a building but all of the fighting was still hand to hand

5/77 Armd
8th Jun 2005, 18:00
I wonder if I've been fighting them all wrong up to now. I can't think of any other way to engage them. They close with my troops too fast for me to get off many shots (which don't kill that many anyways). Are you putting them in "defensive stance" so they stay away? (I can't get that to work btw), One to one, my unit will get creamed in melee combat.

How are you killing them without taking many casualties early in the game? (Late in the game I have square formation to defeat them). I've tried everything I can think of including making a "cul de sac" (U shaped lines with at least three infantry lines) and making them come into the middle. -That only works somewhat.

I honestly don't know how you can go one to one with light infantry and beat them! I've found that if I'm in a building, they pour in there and annhilate my light infantry in melee.

Mongoose
8th Jun 2005, 18:11
Go into a double line formation, and hold your fire until they are almost right in your face. Then click the button and have them fire. If your line of infantry are standing there, and they run in at a line with it like below, then don't shoot:

Militia
--------------->>>>



-------------------
Line Inf

Instead, let them run right at you, head on, as they go to go into melee with you. One volley will kill around 25-40 of them and they are then cake to take on in melee. Good Luck :)

Lt. Kyuzo
8th Jun 2005, 19:33
Basicly all ive been doing is keeping my men in line formation and just getting as many shots off as i can, this is without double line then once they got into melee i had taken out a decent amount so i slaughtered them. will do some tests in a mo to see if it happens every time for me now

Skirmisher
8th Jun 2005, 19:37
Hopefully if the developers are reading the patch/suggestion thread, we will soon be able to rout the rabble with a good blast of grapeshot, followed by a few well disciplined volleys!! :D

Chosen Man
9th Jun 2005, 05:30
I can understand the developers need to balance things when your capital is under seige and all you have is militia to fight with but perhaps there needs to be different battle ratings for militia fighting desperarately to defend their home soil and militia reluctantly fighting abroad and keen to get home to their families.

Strumm
9th Jun 2005, 11:19
Do you know what? That's one of the best, most realistic tweaks I've heard suggested. It'd be completely logical for militia units to fight better in their own empire than on foreign soil, and best of all in the region where they were raised.

Nice one.

Lt. Kyuzo
9th Jun 2005, 12:37
Well i did two test battles last night just to be sure and every time line infantry Vs millita my line infantry won. i get two volleys off before they get into melee and once into melee i win with quite a few of my troops left. same thing happend a bit later when i had an online game and was rushed by a unit of millita

5/77 Armd
9th Jun 2005, 13:10
Are you waiting to fire until the last minute? I wasn't aware of a hold fire button. They always opened fire once the enemy gets in range. Is it the hand (hold) button? I thought that was for movement only. If I can hold my fire until they are right in front of me (without my guys charging themselves) I think I wouldn't have any more problems with these dudes since the first volley would then wipe 'em out. As it stands, they fire when the militia get in range, and I only kill about 5-6 of them.

Lt. Kyuzo
9th Jun 2005, 18:01
Nope dont know of a hold fire button (wish there was mind) they just fire normaly

joxer31
9th Jun 2005, 18:04
I belive that there is an automatic attack button next the run/walk button associatied with each unit. Try that.

Johnny_H
10th Jun 2005, 15:17
well just for kicks I invaded poland turn 1 with one regiment of prussian militia and i wiped a polish infantry unit ( cant remember if it was light or line ) down to six men lol they got off one volly and i charged, they won but only 6 guys left.

Peasants with sticks shoudlnt be able to decimate a infantry unit lol.

Lt. Kyuzo
10th Jun 2005, 18:36
Had an online game this afternoon, a unit of currusars (spelling?) that had been knocked down to about 85% left was charged by one unit of milita. my cavalry got slaghtered! now i have no problem with milita Vs infantry but i cant believe the damage they did to a unit of calvary granted they had taken looses before but still guys with sticks(and somtimes looks like umbrellas) vs cavalry takes the mick a bit