Thursday, July 7, 2011

Checking Out Chainmail, Part 5

This is the fifth post in this series. You can find links to the other parts in the left-hand column of the blog.

After the terrain section, the next thing we see is the movement table. This shows the movement rates and base missile ranges for the various troop types in the game. The movement rates for foot troops arebetween 6" (armored foot) and 12" (Landsknecht/Swiss, arquibusiers/crossbowmen, and longbowmen). For cavalry, the moves are 12" for heavy horse, 18" for medium horse, and 24" for light. All artillery move 6".

Cavalry and artillery benefit when using roads to travel, gaining a 3" or 6" bonus to movement. Most foot and cavalry also gain a 3" or 6" bonus when charging. Only armored foot and heavy crossbowmen gain no bonus to movement from a charge.

Missile ranges are from 3" for heavy foot armed with throwing axes and spears to 24" for heavy crossbowmen.

None of this really sticks out as being unusual, except possibly the lack of a difference between the normal and charge move for armored foot and crossbowmen. I can only guess that Gygax and Perren assumed that the heavy armor worn by armored foot was too heavy for running or that their weaponry was too unwieldy to allow for a running charge. In the case of heavy crossbowmen, I can only assume that they were thinking of difficulties in movement for these troops caused by firing stands, winches, and other equipment. Otherwise, both of these troop types should probably have the 3" bonus when charging that other infantry do.


  1. In WRG Ancients and Medieval rules, SHI and EHI also do not get a distance bonus for charges. SHI are defined as "Medieval knights in full armour predominantly of steel plate when dismounted. Fight in close formation. Move and charge at slow walk." They are given a move of 40 paces per 30-second period. EHI are defined as "Men in three-quarter ammunition armour of steel plate with tassets, or in less substantial but more complete mainly metal armour including protection for upper and lower leg and whole of unshielded arms. Fight in close formation. Move and charge at walk." Their move is 60 paces. Other infantry charge with an extra 20 paces over their normal move, and a base move of 60 paces if close formation, 80 paces if loose or dispersed formation.

  2. Thanks for the info! I was figuring that the lack of a charge move was mainly due to the armor, but I didn't think about the need to maintain formation. If the assumption is that these troops maintain tighter or more regimented organization thatn lighter troops, that would also account for the lack of a charge move. I'm still inclined to add a 3" charge for them anyway, though.