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Subject: Rationale behind fleet blocking assault rule rss

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Lukas Kotek
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Hi,

let's assume that inland city defended by 1 point army is besieged by 12 points army lead by Charles/Suleiman. You never bet on defenders in this situation..

But imagine situation that the city is a port and there is a defending fleet in adjacent sea zone. I really don't understand why is assault absolutely impossible. In reality the assault with such superior forces should be so overhelming that the presence of the fleet should be irrelevant (scale of the game is 1 point = 5000 men). Or is there other rationale behind this?

In above situation maybe additional die/dice to defenders might be more realistic?

Any suggestions?
 
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Jim F
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I guess the rationale is that the port cannot be successfully besieged until it has been cut off from the sea as well as the land. As the port is (presumably) considered key to controlling the province - for example Calais - the invaders can never gain full control of it and would eventually withdraw. This seems reasonably historical to me. More so than perhaps risk where none of this is factored in.

I'm not a fan of HiS so no particular axe to grind but I was ok with this.
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Peter Schott
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I dont know how good a port can be blockaded from the land.
But I'd say pretty good with a big enough army...
 
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Jon G
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I think you'd have to study sieges of that era (and Ed probably did), but I believe they were usually resolved by exhausting the will, supplies, and garrison of the defenders.

Any game is a model, but the idea here is that if the fortified city controls its adjacent waters, it can be resupplied with food, water, and enough men to man the battlements. It's not that unfortified spaces *didn't* have walls & towers, but their walls were outdated (or incomplete, or could be destroyed or bypassed with the weapons an army normally carried or could make on-site), and were thus tactically irrelevant.

Fortified spaces (in the game model) are sufficiently up-to-date that the siege equipment an army typically carried aren't going to break the walls (absent the special resources of the Siege Arty or Siege Mining combat cards). Hence, the only practical ways in are treachery and starving 'em out. The starving 'em out part is modeled a little oddly, but you could figure it represents gradually killing the garrison and doing enough damage that the residents look favorably on reasonable surrender terms.
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Jon G
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pethulhu wrote:
I dont know how good a port can be blockaded from the land.
But I'd say pretty good with a big enough army...


It really depends on the port. Rome's port is a long way from the city, and its fortifications didn't stand up to a contemporary army anyway. Edinburgh has a similar port-access problem. London (where the Tower was the only modern fortification) probably could be cut of by sufficent gunnery from Southwark. On the other hand, good luck assaulting Genoa, Venice, or Istanbul from land alone.
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Peter Schott
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Of course, it's only a game mechanic, and I am fine with that.
Maybe my only gripe with the rule is that in my last (and only) game (playing the pope) I sat up a backstab-assault on a Habsburg city (after much dealing with the other powers) only to be told: No, you can't do that, no naval supremacy...
Maybe I didnt listen carefully enough, maybe I was never told this rule, but is was yuk at this moment.
 
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Kristian Thy
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So in a nutshell, your problem with the rule is that you didn't read it.
 
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Peter Schott
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No, I was told it - and while playing, every once a while a new rule surfaced...
I'd still like to play the game again eventually, now with a fuller rule understanding.
(Usually it's me doing the explaining, but this time it was not my game, and we didnt play at my home...)
 
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Steven
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Although I agree with the rule (and love this game), is this exception for assualts missing on the reference charts? I took a look at a copy of the chart that comes with Vassal and noticed the need for naval supremacy was not listed! Was it included in the 2010 reprint?

 
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Lukas Kotek
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Thanks to all for comments.

I would like to add that I don't have problem with establishing siege with the help of fleet(s). But the strange thing is that I need to remove defender's fleet in case of assault? For me the "assault" is: let's take some ladders, bunch of soldiers and go up to the walls. Do I really need to remove those enemy ships on the horizont for this?

Anyway, I like the game. I am just thinking that necessity of removing defender's fleet during "12:1" assaults is quite strange. So I was thinking on some house rule. Any ideas?
 
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Jon G
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The thing is, sieges rarely happened that way in the 16th century. I'm sure there are counterexamples, but the vast majority were slow and boring. It may have been that 16th century soldiers couldn't be persuaded to take the suicide mission of being the first squad up the ladder. (and trust me, from a reenactor's perspective, the first guy up the ladder is so totally dead)
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Kristian Thy
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chomski wrote:
For me the "assault" is: let's take some ladders, bunch of soldiers and go up to the walls. Do I really need to remove those enemy ships on the horizont for this?


No, but you need to remove the enemy ships in order to starve the defender to a point where you can realistically hope to succesfully assault an otherwise formidable fortress.

Remember that ("Winter" phase notwithstanding) each turn spans several years.
 
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