Best Tactics for Cavalry engagemnets.

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Best Tactics for Cavalry engagemnets.

Postby CT_Nutmegger » Sun May 08, 2011 9:04 am


I have recently engaged in a HPS CG scenario - Aldie - as a UMA Training.

I was curious how to most effectively deal with the disparate range/damage of a rifle-v-Carbine.

Parameter Data of weapons:

Carbine: 6 at 1 hex 2 at 2 hexes 0.5 at 3 hexes
Rifle: 4 at 1 hex 3 at 2 hexes 2 at 3 hexes 0.75 at 4 hexes 0.25 at 5 hexes

While more effective at point-blank range, I had difficulty maneuvering close enough without sustaining disruptive fire.
The inability to ensure a unit will fire defensively, if a Rebel moves adjacent, was problematic for me to remain closely engaged where the superior firepower could be used most effectively.

Any comments or critiques are most welcome, and gratefully requested.

Most Respectfully,
Cadet Zapp
First Lt. Mark Zapp
"1st Connecticut Volunteer Cavalry"
3rd Brigade, Cavalry Div, XIV Corps
Army of the Cumberland, UA
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Re: Best Tactics for Cavalry engagemnets.

Postby David Danner » Sun May 08, 2011 10:17 am

There will be few games like Aldie where dismounting is primary. My best advice is to throw out the parameter data and maneuver your way into enfilade shots against the Rebel mounted cavalry with larger Blue units, while using the smaller Union horsemen mounted as defense and skirmisher/movement disrupter.

It is my experience that the Union cavalry is much better than our opponents. They just don't know it. Use John Buford's cavalry tactics he learned against the Indians: ride--attack--dismount--fire--remount--ride--attack and so-on. And, as always, back out when you are outnumbered.
General Dave Danner
Commanding the Union Military Academy
Commanding Cumberland Rifles Division, XX Corps
Army of the Cumberland
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Re: Best Tactics for Cavalry engagemnets.

Postby Joe Meyer » Tue May 10, 2011 12:22 pm

If you are playing the game in the Phase-based mode, this will certainly be true and General Danner's comments are appropriate. But if you are engaged in the Turn-based mode, you will be asured that all of your units will fire defensively in their portion of the turn, and this will have a more decided influence upon your tactical deployments. Using the latter mode of play you may be more nearly able to use the terrific impact of those units that may be armed with repeating rifles in hidden ambushes or necessary delaying situations.

But I recall what my own Instructor tried to drill into my head. Don't dismount and don't try a standup firefight against infantry with your cavalry. The casualty point value for lost troopers is severe in most scenarios, and entire battles may be skewed from heavy losses in the mounted arm. This is pretty much applicable to either mode of play in the HPS games.
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Union Army Chief of Staff
Commander, Army of the Shenandoah
(2011-2014 UA GinC)

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Re: Best Tactics for Cavalry engagemnets.

Postby nelmsm » Wed May 11, 2011 4:25 pm

General Meyer is right about avoiding a stand up fight with your cavalry against Rebel infantry. Also, the converse is true, any time you get a chance you should try and get your infantry against Rebel cavalry in a firefight. I don't know how many battles I've managed to win because the Rebel got J.E.B. Stuart disease and tried to run his cavalry some place where I managed to pin it and destroy it with infantry fire followed by my guys going in with the bayonet. If you find yourself in a situation where you've got to use your cavalry dismounted, say to buy time for troops to come up as at Gettysburg, be sure to find the best terrain possible. Look for all the combat modifiers you can find in your favor. If you can find some high ground with woods or something similar then give up that extra hex and use it. Also, try and make the Rebel player move before he fires to lessen it's effect.
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