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Clash of Giants: Civil War» Forums » General

Subject: Town harder to defend than, say, a clear hill? rss

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M@tthijs
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This user is outstanding in mediocre videogaming
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Did you visit my www.kobudovenlo.nl? It has game info
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Mind you, my ACW knowledge is largely limited to A House Divided and the comic book serie The blue coats.

But still, looking at the TEC, why is there a -1 for defending a town? Seems like excellent cover used in, like, every war. What am I missing?
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Pete Belli
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Quote:
Town harder to defend than, say, a clear hill?


Good question.

City streets and Civil War infantry tactics were not a good combination. Soldiers were not trained to fight in towns and linear battle formations or marching columns were not suited for congested areas. When part of the Union army retreated through Gettysburg the already confusing situation got even more chaotic as regiments were jammed into narrow streets.

After the Confederate took control of the town the buildings were used by sharpshooters but the city was largely avoided by troops attempting to maneuver. In fact, the town divided Ewell's II Corps like the terrain obstruction that it was and hindered Confederate assaults at that point in the line.
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John Ellsworth
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That's a design question that Ted would have to answer. But in general, I think Pete has it right. Towns were generally defended only as part of siege operations rather than as strongpoints. Rather than Stalingrad-like fortresses, they mostly represented a way to split up formations and cause confusion. In this pre-radio era, orders were passed along by word of mouth and officers generally tried to remain visible to their men, both of which are much more difficult to do when formations are separated by walls and buildings. Due to the way most towns are laid out (separated from woods and other cover), troops that huddled up in them were prime targets for being surrounded and found it very difficult to defend their flanks. The main battles that took place in towns usually featured things like a river that prevented the attackers from fully exploiting their potential advantages (such as Fredericksburg). Civil War troops did not as a rule fight as part of squads or patrols - small formations that could make good use of a single building - but rather as larger formations that would be broken up by such structures.
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ted raicer
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What Pete and John said.
 
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Mick Mickelsen
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In WWII buildings and towns were definitely a defensive bulwark. Back in the day (and some designers still do this) a lot of war-games simply transferred some of the WWII doctrines such as needing a 3 to 1 advantage in force to make an attack, and treating woods and towns as defensively advantageous, to other eras, such as the Napoleonic era, when this wasn't the case.
 
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