House Rules: Mass Combat

Mass Combat Rules

Building Armies


An army is actually composed of one or more units. When you create an army, you are actually creating the army units that will compose the army. Each unit can be made up of creatures or classes, and be of a size different from other units. In this way, an army can be more versatile in war. For example, your army can have a unit of 500 1st-level fighters, 200 1st-level archers, 100 2nd-level heavy knights, and 50 3rd-level wizards.

Leading an Army

Each army must have a designated leader. A leader with a good Profession (soldier) skill and/or the Leadership feat can assist the army's performance on the battlefield. An army's leader can be a PC or an NPC, but must spend at least 3 days per week (if the army is in the field) or per month (if the army is in reserve, see below), or the army suffers a -1 penalty to Morale. This penalty accumulates each week or month the leader fails to show up. If the army's morale drops to -5, it disbands as noted above. The leader can alleviate this penalty by simply showing up the required amount of time; each week or month he does so, the penalty is reduced by 1. The penalty can also be reduced by 1 each week or month by doubling the army's consumption.

Leadership Bonus (LB): A commander’s base Leadership Bonus (LB) is equal to +1 for every 5 points of her Profession (soldier) skill modifier, and adds either her Intelligence, Wisdom, or Charisma modifier (whichever is highest). If she has the Leadership feat, the bonus increases by 1 for every 10 points of her Leadership Score. In addition, a commander’s LB is increased by 1 for every 5 base attack bonus above +1. Enhancement bonuses to these modifiers do not increase the bonus.
    Profession (soldier) skill is used for ground-based armies. Commanders for aerial forces use Profession (pilot), naval commanders use Profession (sailor), and siege commanders use Knowledge (engineering).

Army Statistics

Name: This is the name of the army. This could be a mercenary company's name, such as "Thokk's Bloodragers," a formal regiment number such as "7th Royal Cavalry," or an informal name such as "militia from Redstone."

XP: This is the XP awarded to the PCs if their army defeats this army, and is the same as an XP award for an encounter with a CR equal to the army's ACR (see below).

Alignment: An army's alignment has no effect on its statistics, and is just a convenient way to summarize its attitude with two letters. It is usually the same alignment as a typical unit in that army.

Army Challenge Rating (ACR): An army's challenge rating is the average CR of all of its units together plus the total number of units within the army.

Speed: This number indicates how many 12-mile hexes the army traverses in a day's march. Marching through difficult terrain halves the army's speed. The army's speed is that of it's slowest unit.

Tactics: These are any army tactics that all units have at their disposal in addition to those they already have.

Morale: This number represents how confident the overall army is. Army Morale is applied to a unit's Morale when used to determine changing battle tactics, whether or not a unit routs as a result of a devastating attack, and similar effects. Morale is a modifier from –10 (worst) to +10 (best). a new army's starting morale is +0. Morale can be further modified by the army's commander and other factors. If an army's Morale is ever reduced to –11 or lower, the army disbands or deserts and you no longer control it.

Consumption: Total the Consumption of all of the army's units to determine the army's Consumption.

Supplies: In order to pay Consumption, an army must carry with them an amount of BP to represent its supplies. These BP can also be used to pay for engineering constructions built by the army. An army's supply of BP can be transferred back and forth with another army: for instance, a smaller army can transport a large amount of BP to resupply another army already deployed on the field. An army's supply of BP can be looted by another army when defeated, or could be left remaining on the field.

Units: The different groups of creatures that make up the army. See Unit Statistics below. An army can have a number of units equal to 1 + the army commander's LB. In addition, all army units gain half of the commander's LB to MV, RV, and DV.

Army Commander: This entry lists the army's commander and the commander's highest mental attribute modifier, Profession (soldier) skill modifier, and Leadership score. The commander must be able to communicate with the army (possibly using message spells and similar magical forms of communication) in order to give orders or provide a bonus on the army's rolls.

Commander Boons: This lists the boons the commander knows (see Boons). A commander's maximum number of boons known is 1 plus her LB. A new or unexceptional commander might know no boons at first, but can gain them from victories in battle. If you're a nation leader acting as a commander, you automatically have one boon appropriate to your leadership role (see below). Army units gain the benefit of the commander's boons in addition to those of their unit leader.

Unit Statistics

Unit Leader: This entry lists the unit's leader and the leader's highest mental attribute modifier, Profession (soldier) skill modifier, and Leadership score. The unit gains its leader's LB to MV, RV, and DV.

Unit Challenge Rating (UCR): This is based on the CR of an individual soldier from the unit and the unit's size, and scales like CRs for monsters. To determine UCR, see Table: Army Sizes and apply the modifier for the army's size to the CR of an individual unit in the army.

Sections: Sections determine how much hp a unit has. An army unit is composed of up to 5 sections of equal size, and each section has hit points equal to the unit's UCR (minimum 1). However, not all leaders are are capable of handling the leadership demands of a full unit; hence, the maximum number of sections in a unit is limited to 1 + the leader’s LB. A unit that is lacking one or more sections at the beginning of a battle takes a -1 penalty to MV, RV, DV, and Morale checks per missing section. A section is destroyed when it receives Casualties equal to its hp. A unit is destroyed if all of its sections are destroyed as well.
    For example, a Small-size army unit is composed of 1st-level human fighters (CR 1), and therefore has a UCR of 5. The unit's leader has a Charisma score of 14 (+2), a Profession (soldier) skill modifier of +10 (+2), and a Leadership score of 13 (+1). The unit's leader is thus fully capable of commanding a full unit of 5 sections, each with 5 hp for a unit total of 25 hp. However, if the leader had only a Charisma score of 10 (+0), a Profession (soldier) skill modifier of +11 (+2), and no Leadership score, she would only be able to command a weakened unit of of 3 sections, which would only have a unit total of 15 hp, and have a -2 penalty to MV, RV, DV, and Morale checks(because of 2 missing sections).

Melee Value (MV): A unit’s combat prowess in melee is reflected in its MV. Units have a base MV equal to their UCR plus the LB of its leader and the CB of their army's commander. MV can also be modified by equipment, special abilities, command boons, tactics, fatigue, environmental conditions, and the like.

Ranged Value (RV): A unit’s combat prowess in ranged combat is reflected in its RV. RV functions identically to MV, except that units that do not possess ranged weapons or other ranged attack capability, they cannot make ranged attacks (denoted as “RV -”).

Defense Value (DV): The defensive abilities of a unit are reflected in its DV. Units have a base DV equal to 10 + their UCR and their leader’s LB and their army commander's CB, adjusted by any applicable modifiers, such as those listed under MV.

Morale: A unit’s Morale reflects its fighting spirit and its skill and confidence on the battlefield. Unit Morale is modified by the value of the army Morale. Morale checks are often required to succeed at various battlefield tactics, or to overcome special effects caused by enemy armies. A brand-new unit has a Morale score equal to the nation’s Loyalty modifier divided by 20 (rounding down, with a minimum of 1 and a maximum of 10), and it can increase or decrease during the course of a battle and in its aftermath, increasing with victory and falling with defeat. A unit’s Morale score can never exceed 10, and if it ever drops to 0 the unit disbands.
    A unit’s Morale score modifies its Morale checks, adding the Leadership Bonus of its leader. For each section missing from the unit’s full strength, whether already missing before battle or defeated during a battle, the unit takes a -1 penalty to its Morale checks.
    When a section is destroyed, its unit loses 1 point of Morale and takes an additional -1 penalty to Morale checks for the duration of the current battle.

Speed: This number indicates how many 12-mile hexes the unit traverses in a day's march. Marching through difficult terrain halves the unit's speed. Use Table: Movement and Distance to determine the unit's speed based on the speed of its individual soldiers.

Scouting: A unit’s ability to notice other armies is reflected in its Scouting score. This bonus is equal to the Perception modifier of the creatures in the unit divided by 4, plus the leader's Intelligence modifier plus 1 for every 5 points of the leader's Knowledge (geography).

Camouflage: A unit’s ability to evade notice by other armies is reflected in its Camouflage score. The Camouflage score of a unit is equal to 10 plus the Stealth modifier of the creatures comprising the unit divided by 4, adding the leader’s Intelligence modifier plus 1 for every 5 points of the leader's Knowledge (geography) skill modifier, and applying the Camouflage modifier noted in Table: Army Size. If a unit has Mounts, it uses the worse Stealth modifier of the riders or mounts.

Leader Boons: Unit leaders have boons just like army commanders, except they only have a number equal to their LB.

Boons

Raising an Army

To create an army, you need to recruit an army unit. You can raise an army unit in any settlement that has a Barracks or Garrison. A Barracks can raise a unit up to size Medium; a Garrison can raise a unit up to size Huge. Each Barracks or Garrison can raise only one unit per nation turn.

Raising a unit requires a Loyalty check with a penalty equal to twice the CR of the unit you want to raise. If the check succeeds, you spend BP equal to the unit's CR and the army unit is created. If the check fails, you spend BP equal to half the intended unit's CR but the unit is not raised. However, if you attempt to raise a unit from the same Barracks or Garrison on your next nation turn, you gain a +4 bonus to your Loyalty check.

The unit must then be assigned to an army. Until then, the unit is treated as an army itself which will count against the nation's limit of armies.

All newly formed army units are recruited at 1st-level, except for elites.

Table: Army Unit Sizes

Unit Size Number of Soldiers UCR Designation Resource Scaling Camouflage
Fine 1 CR of individual creature - 2 Solo n/a +8
Diminutive 10 CR of individual creature Squad x 1/10 +6
Tiny 25 CR of individual creature + 2 Platoon x 1/4 +4
Small 50 CR of individual creature + 4 Reinforced Platoon x 1/2 +2
Medium 100 CR of individual creature + 6 Company x 1 +0
Large 200 CR of individual creature + 8 Reinforced Company x 2 +2
Huge 500 CR of individual creature + 10 Battalion x 5 -5
Gargantuan 1,000 CR of individual creature + 12 Reinforced Battalion x 10 -10
Colossal 2,000 CR of individual creature + 14 Regiment x 20 -20
Colossal+1 4,000 CR of individual creature + 16 Reinforced Regiment x 40 -40
Colossal+2 8,000 CR of individual creature + 18 Brigade x 80 -80
Colossal+3 16,000 CR of individual creature + 20 Reinforced Brigade x 160 -160
Colossal+4 32,000 CR of individual creature + 22 Division x 320 -320
Colossal+5 64,000 CR of individual creature + 24 Corps x 640 -640

Maintaining an Army

Armies cost Consumption each week that they are kept in the field, or each month that they are kept in reserve. An army can always be created in one place and moved to another location to be placed in reserve there. It is considered to be in the field while moving its base of operations, and must pay that consumption for that week, but if it reaches its destination in less than a week, it can be treated as being in reserve, and must pay consumption only once more for the remainder of the month. To be kept in reserve, an army must be housed in a settlement or hex with enough buildings to accommodate the army's total number of units.

Watchtower: Up to 50 units.

Barracks: Up to 100 units.

Castle: Up to 200 units.

Garrison: Up to 500 units.

Fort: Up to 2,000 units.

An army's base consumption is equal to half its CR (rounded down, minimum 1), paid at the beginning of each week (or month). If you don't pay, its Morale goes down by 2; if it the army's Morale reaches -5, the army disbands. If an army disbands from lack of pay, your nation suffers -2 penalty to your nation's Stability, Economy, and Loyalty for the next 12 months.

Equipping Your Army

Your army starts out with typical melee-focused gear. You can, however, improve them up by buying additional resources for them when they are created. The noted extra buildings are required in the city where the army is created. The minimum cost is 1 BP.

Firearms, Advanced (BP = 12, +4 consumption): The army is equipped with early firearms (such as rifles), gaining ranged attack capability . Increase its OM by 3 and its Consumption by 4.

Firearms, Early (BP = 8, +2 consumption): The army is equipped with early firearms (such as muskets), gaining ranged attack capability . Increase its OM by 1 and its Consumption by 2.

Healing Potions (BP = ACR): Each unit is equipped with several healing potions. At any point during a battle (but no more than twice per battle), the commander can order her units to drink their potions. The army doesn't attempt an Offense check that phase, but heals a number of hit points equal to twice its ACR. Each time an army uses its healing potions, increase its Consumption that week by 3. To purchase this resource, a settlement in your kingdom must have an Alchemist, Caster's Tower, Cathedral, Herbalist, Magic Shop, Magical Academy, or Temple.

Improved Armor (3 BP): The army is armed with masterwork armor, increasing DV and Consumption by 1. For 15 BP, you can outfit the army with magic armor, increasing DV and Consumption by 2 instead. To purchase this, a settlement in your kingdom must have a Foreign Quarter, Military Academy, or Smithy.

Improved Weapons (5 BP): The army is armed with masterwork weapons, increasing OM and Consumption by 1. For 50 BP, you can outfit the army with magic weapons, increasing OM and Consumption by 2 instead. To purchase this resource, a settlement in your kingdom must have a Foreign Quarter, Military Academy, or Smithy.

Mounts (BP = mount's ACR): The army is mounted on horses or other war-trained animals. Increase its OM and DV by 2, and increase its Consumption by 1. If your army uses mounts that are more powerful than the units themselves, your army's ACR and derived scores might increase (see ACR). To purchase this resource, a settlement in your kingdom must have a Foreign Quarter, Stable, or Stockyard.

Ranged Weapons (2 BP): The army is equipped with ranged weapons (such as crossbows, slings, or bows), gaining ranged attack capability. Increase its Consumption by 1.

Siege Engines (15 BP per engine): Your army includes catapults, rams, trebuchets, ballistae, and other siege engines designed to break down fortifications. Increase OM by 2 (regardless of the total number of siege engines in the army) and Consumption by 3 per siege engine. Each Melee phase, reduce the enemy's bonus to DV from fortifications by 1d4 per siege engine in your army. Unlike other resources, the cost of a siege engine doesn't scale with the army's size. To purchase this resource, a settlement in your kingdom must have an Academy, Foreign Quarter, Military Academy, or University.

Siege Engines, Firearm (30 BP per engine): Your army includes cannons, and other firearm siege engines designed to break down fortifications. Increase OM by 5 (regardless of the total number of siege engines in the army) and Consumption by 8 per siege engine. Each Melee phase, reduce the enemy's bonus to DV from fortifications by 2d6 per firearm siege engine in your army. Unlike other resources, the cost of a siege engine doesn't scale with the army's size. To purchase this resource, a settlement in your kingdom must have an Academy, Foreign Quarter, Military Academy, or University.

Example Army

Iron Watch
LN
ACR
Army Commander Argus Rosencrantz DeMonteblanco
UNITS
Elite Squad
Unit Leader
Veteran Platoon
1st Company
2nd Company
3rd Company

Mass Combat


Attacking And Taking Damage

In mass combat, the hundreds of individual attacks that take place in one battle phase overlap each other enough that who actually attacks first is irrelevant.

When making an attack, either ranged or in melee, the army unit makes an Offense check (1d20 + either their MV or RV depending on the type of attack) and compares the result to the target unit's DV.

If the Offense check is equal to or less than the target army's DV, the army deals no damage that phase.

If the Offense check is greater than defender's DV, the defending army takes damage equal to the result of the attacker's Offense check minus the defender's DV. For example, if the attacker's Offense check is 11 and the defender's DV is 7, the defending army takes 4 points of damage. Because these attacks are resolved simultaneously, it is possible that both armies may damage or even destroy each other in the same phase.

Upon receiving damage, the unit's leader must roll 1d20 and add her LB. If the check beats DC 20, then the leader may choose which section receives the damage. For every 5 that the check beats the DC, the leader may choose to divide the damage between an additional section, up to the maximum number of sections the unit has. If the check fails, then the section with the least amount of hit points receives the damage first. Damage exceeding a section's remaining hp is applied to the next section with the lowest hit points. A section reduced to 0 hit points is destroyed.

If the Offense check is a natural 20, but that check is lower than the enemy army's DV, the attacking army still deals 1 point of damage. If the Offense check is a natural 1, that army can't attempt an Offense Check in the next phase, due to some setback: a misheard order, getting stuck in mud, and so on.

Battle Zones

When armies meet, the battlefield is divided into multiple zones of engagement. These are listed below, starting from furthest away from the center of the battle, to the nearest.

  • Camp Zone: This represents an army’s base of operations, which may be a temporary bivouac or a permanent fortification. Army units in the Camp zone cannot participate in a battle unless enemy armies move into the Camp zone.
  • Command Zone: This is the area where the army’s leader directs the flow of battle. The army's leader must be at least this far in order to participate in the battle.
  • Rear Zone: This represents the back lines of an army on the field, with forces either arrayed to engage in ranged combat or simply to hold in place in reserve.
  • Front Zone: This represents the front lines of any battle, where forces meet in close and brutal combat.

It is easier to visualize these zones as concentric circles with an army's Camp zone at the center. Each army has their own set of battle zones, and if you wanted your forces to reach the enemy's Command zone, you must advance your army through your own Front zone into the enemy's Front zone, then through their Rear zone, and finally into their Command zone.

A unit that is within an army's Front zone (including its own army) can advance into the Front zone of any other army on the field of battle. However, if the unit moves deeper in such as the Rear or Command zones, it cannot move to another army's zone until it returns to the Front zone of the army it is in.

Strategy

At the beginning of a battle, each army commander must decide upon its overall strategy for the battle, not in terms of the precise maneuvers that will be used but more in terms of its philosophy about how the battle is to be conducted. Selecting a strategy applies to all units in the commander’s army. While individual units may have their own specialized tactics that define how they carry out the overall strategy, that one overall strategy guides all of their actions on the battlefield.

During each Tactical Initiative phase, the commander for each army can try to alter the strategy her forces pursue, adjusting it by one step in either direction without needing to make a Morale check. A commander can attempt to shift strategy to a greater degree, but this is difficult for all but the most highly trained armies, requiring a Morale check with a penalty equal to the number of steps by which strategy is being shifted. If the check fails, the army’s strategy changes one step in the desired direction, but the army is thrown into disarray for the remainder of that Battle phase, resulting in a penalty to Melee Value (MV), Range Value (RV), and Defensive Value (DV) equal to the number of steps the commander attempted to shift their strategy.

Table: Strategies

Type of Strategy MV and RV DV Casualties
Hold Firm -4 +4 -2
Cautious Advance -2 +2 -1
Standard
Aggressive Attack +2 -2 +1
All-Out Assault +4 -4 +2

The Casualties modifier applies to damage dealt by you and damage received from your enemies, including damage from failed attacks and friendly fire.

Phases

  1. Tactical Phase: Each round of combat, the overall army commander can shift the overall strategy that all forces under her command will follow. In addition, each unit leader can decide what special tactics their unit will use to implement that strategy. These choices must be made before tactical initiative is determined.
    • Tactical Initiative: Each commander makes a Profession (soldier) skill check, and whichever commander rolls lowest on their check must reveal their strategy first. A commander with a higher check can change his strategy in response to his opponent’s, though moving strategy more than one step on Table: Strategy requires a Morale check to perform smoothly.
      • In addition to forcing his enemy to reveal his strategy first, if one commander’s check exceeds his opponent’s by 5 or more, he can either force his enemy to reveal one tactic or he can change one of his own army’s tactics for every 5 points by which his check exceeds his opponent’s. The commander can choose which army he wishes to learn about; if that army has more than one tactic available, it must reveal the tactic it is using during this Battle phase. Regardless of the result of your check, you can reveal only one tactic per enemy army or change one tactic for each of your armies; any excess is lost. Command boons and creature special abilities are not revealed by winning tactical initiative.
    • The commander in charge of each army makes a Profession (soldier) check; the individual unit leaders do not. Winning tactical initiative provides a bonus of +1 to MV and RV for all units under the commander’s command. In addition, since units are modular that means that combat is sequential rather than simultaneous. The commander that wins tactical initiative selects one unit to attack an enemy unit, followed by the enemy selecting one unit to attack in response. Attacks alternate from each commander until all units have attacked once. Unlike the standard rules, a unit that is destroyed, disabled, routed, or otherwise taken out of action before it has a chance to act forfeits its attack. If one side has more units than the other, when one side runs out of units to attack taking turns with its opponent, any leftover units from the larger army attack in succession until all have attacked.
  2. Ranged Phase: During this phase, any army or unit that is not engaged with an enemy force can make a ranged attack (assuming it has ranged weapons or other capabilities enabling ranged attacks to be made)
    • Attack: If your unit has a Ranged Value and is not engaged, then it can make a ranged attack against another unit up to 2 zones away.
    • Advance: If your unit is not engaged, then it can move into an adjacent zone.
    • Hold: Your unit can remain in place, neither attacking nor advancing.
    • Friendly Fire: When a unit makes a ranged attack against an enemy unit that is engaged with one of your armies, it has a 25% chance of dealing 1d6-3 points of damage to the allied unit regardless of whether its attack is successful. If your ranged attack roll is a natural 1, your allied unit automatically takes 1d6-3 points of damage, while on a natural 20 your allied unit never takes damage from friendly fire. A unit taking damage from friendly fire loses 1 point of Morale.
  3. Battle Phase: During this phase, units move together and engage in combat, using a variety of special tactics to outmaneuver and destroy their opponents. Each unit resolves its attack as normal. Once all attacks each army proceeds to the Rout phase described below, and as long as at least one unit on each side survives without being routed, the battle enters a new round, with a new check to determine Tactical Initiative, as described in the Battle phase above.
    • Engagement: When a unit attacks another in melee, the units become engaged even if the attack fails. Engaged units are caught up in the thick of the fighting, seething together in a mass of bodies, blades, and blood. Once units become engaged, neither can leave the zone until one or both units are defeated, destroyed, or routed from the field, or until one side performs a successful Retreat, Withdrawal, or similar tactic that allows it to disengage from its enemies and those enemies either cannot or choose not to pursue them.
  4. Rout Phase: After resolving ranged and tactical combat for the round, each surviving unit must succeed at a Morale check to sustain its will to fight. After resolving all attacks in the tactical phase, each unit proceeds to the Rout phase, with each surviving unit making a Morale check with a DC of 10 plus 1 for each allied unit that has been destroyed or routed from the field. If this check succeeds, the unit may continue the fight undaunted. If the check fails, the unit’s Morale score is reduced by 1d4. If this reduces the unit’s Morale to zero, you must make a Loyalty check. If successful, the unit remains intact with its Morale reset to 1 and the unit routs, fleeing from the battlefield. If the Loyalty check fails, the unit disbands. A cumulative -5 penalty applies to each Loyalty check for this purpose after the first that each side makes during a battle.
    • Routed Units: A routed unit is forced to flee the battlefield and cannot attack. Any unit engaged with it can make a free Standard or Volley attack against the routing unit. After this attack is resolved, the unit’s leader must make an opposed Profession (soldier) check with a -4 penalty against the leader of the engaged unit that made the attack, with each leader adding their unit's Speed to this roll (making it advantageous to use cavalry or other fast units to attack routing units). If the fleeing unit wins the check, it is able to disengage and escape from the battlefield to its Camp zone. If the enemy unit’s check is higher, the routing unit disengages but is forced to remain on the battlefield in an adjacent zone.
    • General Retreat: At the end of any Rout phase, a commander can sound a general retreat, ordering all of her units to fall back and leave the battlefield. This functions like the Retreat tactic but can be performed even by units that have already attacked in the Battle phase; however, retreating units take an additional -2 penalty to their Morale check to disengage from enemy units. In addition, when a General Retreat is ordered, any enemy unit that is not engaged with one of your retreating units can make one Volley ranged attack against any retreating unit of its choice.
    • Mercenaries: When a mercenary army’s Morale drops to 1, or when they have lost more than half of their sections, they must make a Morale check to avoid routing. A nation takes no penalties when a mercenary army disbands or is destroyed.

Defeat, Destroyed, Disbanded

  • Defeated Units: An army unit that has all of its sections reduced to 0 hit points is defeated and can take no further actions in the battle, but it can be taken prisoner or massacred by its enemies following the battle, attacked in spite of their surrender in the midst of battle, or recovered, reformed, and restored to fighting strength by its allies after the battle ends (see Victory and Aftermath). Unless massacred, a defeated unit has enough surviving soldiers to form one section, but these survivors are too wounded, physically exhausted, or emotionally shaken to continue to fight.
  • Destroyed Units: If a defeated unit is attacked before the battle ends, it takes a -2 penalty to its DV. If successfully attacked by an enemy unit of at least half its size, the defeated unit is instead destroyed and ceases to exist as a fighting force. Any survivors are individuals who are wounded, or surrendered or deserted.
    • An army is destroyed when all of its units are destroyed. When that happens, the nation for which it fought loses 1 point of Fame. In addition, there is a 25% chance that the city where the army was recruited (with an Improvement or Recruitment Edict) has a Building Demand event during the next nation turn, demanding a Monument to be erected as a memorial to the fallen. This is in addition to any other nation events that may occur. Unrest increases by 1 every month this demand is not met.
  • Disbanded Units: When all units are reduced to 0 Morale and the army commander fails a Loyalty check, the army not only routs from the battlefield but actually ceases to exist as a fighting force, disintegrating in a combination of flight and surrender. When an army disbands, 50% of its number is permanently deducted from the kingdom’s population, as those soldiers desert their country and flee for safer lands where their shame will not follow them. The other 50% of the soldiers filter back into the population of their nation.
    • When an army disbands, all allied armies take a -1 penalty to Morale checks for the remainder of the battle; this stacks if more than one army disbands. When an army disbands, the nation for which it fights takes a permanent -1 penalty to Fame, Loyalty, and Stability and the city where the army was recruited (with an Improvement or Recruitment Edict) takes a permanent -2 penalty to Law.
    • If an army disbands while you are at war (rather than, for example, disbanding because of lack of pay or training during peacetime), your enemy gains a one-time reduction in its consumption for any one unit within one hex of the disbanded unit equal to 1/2 the disbanded army’s ACR; if this amount exceeds your unit’s Consumption, any excess is lost. However, if you use an Improvement Edict or Recruitment Edict to create a new army in a Fort or settlement within 3 hexes of the site of the enemy army’s desertion, you gain a one-time bonus to your next Loyalty check to recruit that army as you take advantage of disaffected deserters from your enemy who have turned to your side.

Engagement

When an army attacks another in melee, the armies become engaged even if the attack fails. Engaged armies are caught up in the thick of the fighting, seething together in a mass of bodies, blades, and blood. Once armies become engaged, neither can leave the battlefield until one or both armies are defeated, destroyed, or routed from the field, or until one side performs a successful Retreat, Withdrawal, or similar tactic that allows it to disengage from its enemies and those enemies either cannot or choose not to pursue them.

Fatigue

An army unit that becomes fatigued takes a -1 penalty to MV, RV, and DV and cannot use the Furious Charge or Overwhelming Onslaught tactics. If a unit engages in an activity that causes it to become fatigued when it is already fatigued, it becomes exhausted instead. Its penalties to MV, RV, and DV increase to -3 and its movement is halved, and it cannot use the Cavalry Sweep, False Retreat, Pincer Maneuver, Pursuit, Skirmishers, or Strafing Skirmishers maneuvers. If a unit performs an action that would cause it to become fatigued when it is already exhausted, the unit takes 1 damage to each section.

To remove fatigue, a unit must retreat or withdraw from the battlefield and remain away from the battle for at least 2 Battle phases; each Battle phase after the first that it spends resting, it may attempt a Morale check to recover from its fatigue. If a battle ceases for at least 8 consecutive hours, armies on all sides can attempt an army Morale check to recover from fatigue. If a unit is exhausted, making one Morale check to recover improves its condition to fatigued. The unit can attempt an additional Morale check for each Battle phase it continues to rest away from the battlefield (or each 8 hours when no battle occurs) to remove the fatigued condition.

Healing After Battle

A unit that remains on the field or is able to retreat from it without being defeated (i.e. all of its sections reduced to 0 hit points) can rest for 1 hour in order to regain 1 hit point to each of its sections that were not destroyed and automatically reduces the exhausted condition to fatigued. sections regain 1 hit point for each additional hour of rest. If the unit can rest for 8 additional hours without interruption, the unit automatically removes the fatigued condition. Units that are marching, guarding prisoners, or performing other light-duty tasks heal half the normal amount of hit points (rounding down). Units that engage in a battle or that take damage from a forced march do not heal at all.

A unit that has been defeated but is able to exit the battlefield regains 1 hit point after 1 hour of rest to each surviving sections. After this time, it can again function as a unit, including using the healing rules described above. If the unit is destroyed or disbands, it cannot heal. The Magical Healing command boon or Healing Potions resource doubles the number of hit points regained by one unit during the first hour of its rest.

Parley

Once per battle, at the beginning of any Battle phase, the commander of either army may ask for parley, a meeting under a flag of truce with a spokesperson for the opposing side. You must use this maneuver before any army has attacked in the Battle phase. The commander asking for Parley must make a Diplomacy or Intimidate check opposed by the Diplomacy or Intimidate check of the opposing general. When using Diplomacy, the commander adds his nation’s Fame score to this check. When using Intimidate, the commander adds his nation’s Infamy score instead. Each commander chooses which skill to use and need not choose the same skill. A commander takes a -1 penalty for each unit under his command that has been defeated or routed, -2 for each that has been destroyed. If your check equals or exceeds the opposing general’s, you can force them (or their representative) to come forth and meet you under a temporary truce to discuss terms of surrender or withdrawal from the field, to offer a challenge of champions or other contest, to exchange hostages or negotiate ransom, or simply to taunt and bluster at one another. Armies normally do not attack during the Battle phase when a Parley occurs, though they may use command boons or disengage from enemy armies, or perform other actions that are not attacks. If a unit does attack during a Parley, the kingdom whose army it is gains +1d4 Infamy, and each unit that attacks loses 1 point of Morale. In addition, your armies gain a +1 bonus to OM and on opposed Morale checks against any army that attacks during the Parley for the remainder of the battle.

Tactics

Contesting Territory

When your army enters a hex claimed by another nation, it can spend a day to take control of its infrastructure. The hex then becomes contested by your nation. The hex and its improvements still belongs to its original nation, but they no longer gain the benefits of the improvements. A contested hex allows a supply line to be established in the other nation's territory. You can contest a hex with a settlement in it, but the settlement continues to provide its benefits to its nation.

Hexes claimed by your nation that are contested can be reclaimed by an army spending a day in that hex to retake control. The hex must not contain any enemy armies in it.

Supplying Armies Abroad

An army's Consumption increases by 1 for every 10 hexes away from the nearest Fort or settlement owned or contested by your nation. When your army is not in an uncontested hex claimed by your nation, you must manually deliver BP to the army with another army to them in order to pay its Consumption. You may deliver as much BP as you wish to pay its Consumption for later weeks. If an army carrying BP, either the one delivering it or the one that receives it, is defeated, destroyed, or is disbanded, the enemy army can loot half of that army's BP.

Army Engineering

An army with a unit with the Engineering quality can build temporary hex improvements to benefit their army. The hex must either be claimed by your nation and uncontested, or a foreign hex contested by your nation. The time it takes to build these improvements are reduced by a number of days equal to twice of the engineering unit's UCR (minimum 1 day). Army engineering improvements are designed to be built fast and to be temporary, and disappear after a week unless maintained. Maintaining an army improvement requires spending only half of the improvement's cost and time, and renews the improvements time limit.

Bridge
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Construction Time:

Fortifications
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Roads
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