Gentlemen: Per the LAOK supplement, on page 19, in the first half of the 1700s, foot artillery cannot move once placed, i.e., unlimbered, (except to pivot). I have a gamer-friend that states that this would also apply in the SYW, even though that war is in the latter half of the century. I would welcome comments on this or recommendations on reference material?
Throughout this period ( 1700 to the end of the seven years war ) battlefield artillery, once placed, is rarely moved again. This is for a number of reasons depending on the army in question, and although some armies did experiment with re-deployable "horse" artillery, ( Marshall Saxe with his French army and Frederick ) most close artillery support was from manhandled battalion guns. When artillery became lighter and horse artillery became more common, the battalion gun was abandoned as artillery could limber and move forward to supply close support to the advancing infantry and cavalry ( Napoleonics ).
If you allow your artillery to move after it is placed you will find it limbering and advancing with the infantry / cavalry or re-deploying to meet a new threat with a speed its historical army would envy. You may find that you are playing Napoleonics with Tricornes. If the battle you are refighting saw one army or the other limber and redeploy its guns or there is good historical precedent then by all means allow it. However, I think you will find that in most accounts the big guns stay where they are and thats one of the key differences between SYW and Naps.
But, as always with Black Powder, the decesion is yours!
Movement is a question of size. Prussian SYW battalion guns are 3pdr and light 6pdr. Other armies used 3 and 4pdr guns. Not only men handled but with the horses directly behind the infantry.
Among the guns casted for the Grande armée in 1811 at Strasbourg was still the modelle 1764 Canon de 12. The Prussian 12pdr M 1761 was little improved in 178o by the Model Dieskau. But there was also a light and a medium 12pdr in the SYW Prussian army. The Commanders used these guns very clever.
The Prussian heavy artillery OOB of Liegnitz 1760 may help: 1st Treffen (1st line) 20 medium 12 pdr guns , 19 heavy 12pdr guns and 1 24pdr gun! 2nd Treffen 20 medium 12pdr guns , 6 10pdr Howitzers and 2 18pdr Howitzers Reserve: 3 light 12 pdr guns and 6 heavy 6pdr guns.
The 12 pdr of the first Treffen even came in Kartätschen range. Zieten got his big 12pdr Battery on the Galgenberg , hitting the Croats down at Schwarzwasser and Katzbach heavily.
Main later improvement was in standard carriages and soldier drivers. No more hired horses with men reluctant to enter the danger zone.
Last edited by Invisible officer on Sun Nov 13, 2011 9:19 am, edited 1 time in total.
Agreed. The main difference in the British army also was the formation of regular Artillery crew and not hired hands or impressed locals to do the moving around.
I also agree that there are a number of occasions in battles throughout the period where artillery was moved. ( In LAOK I create a special rule for Colonel Blood at Blenheim as he did just this for example) but it was not the norm.
The rules for artillery movement on page 33 if applied to battles from 1700 to the end of the SYW would, I think, make artillery too effective. These rules come into their own in the Napoleonic and even the Colonial period. I dont think artillery,the sighting, firing and battlefield movement of which was in its infancy in 1700, should play a major part in many of the battles. Quick and effective movement will make it more effective than it was historically. I accept that the amount of artillery, and its effectiveness, has increased dramatically by the end of the SYW from what it was at the begining and so perhaps more movement could be allowed for later SYW armies. My gut feeling is that you still risk playing Napoleonics with tricornes.
I would be interested in any reports. Let me know how you get on.