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Author Topic: Imperial Knights.  (Read 14936 times)

Offline Zalminen

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Re: Imperial Knights.
« Reply #25 on: June 26, 2009, 05:01:00 PM »
I have to somewhat agree with MagicJuggler...

It doesn't really make sense that fluffwise Pistoliers are training to one day be accepted in the Knightly orders and then Pistoliers are the special unit  :?


Offline Lord Etharion

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Re: Imperial Knights.
« Reply #26 on: June 27, 2009, 05:36:29 AM »
Nah, there are plenty of reasons.

Gamewise, you want more units of nillas than you do of fast cav, and putting fast cav in core opens up the possibility of annoying all fast cav armies that dance around you and never fight. This alone should be reason enough to keep them as they are.

Fluffwise, there are tons of reasons pistoliers might be less common than knights (and scarcity is all that is really needed to justify status as special troops).

Reason 1: Pistolier is a short term thing. You do it for a year or two, then spend the rest of your life as a knight (unless you become an outrider). Of course there will be more knights than pistoliers, the same way there are more cops than police academy students.

Reason 2: As apprentices, the Knightly Orders want to see that their future members are protected, so pistoliers are only deployed to battles large enough to warrant sending knights as well. This way the knights can look out for the pistoliers, and the pistoliers can learn something from the knights.

Reason 3: Pistoliers are an expensive proposition for a knightly order. Instead of 'just' getting the hugely expensive fullplate armour and destrier for a potential knight, they have to get  firearms, smaller faster horses, and appropriate armour for their new members, and then buy all the knightly stuff when they qualify. Only the largest and richest orders can afford this, so pistoliers are fairly rare.

Reasons 2 & 3 dovetail together rather nicely.

So yeah, leave things as they are.
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Offline MagicJuggler

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Re: Imperial Knights.
« Reply #27 on: June 27, 2009, 04:44:12 PM »
Gameplay wise: I actually am in in the inverse camp, and believe successful cavalry armies have been successfully composed of larger amounts of light cavalry supplemented by smaller elite contingents of heavy cavalry. This can range from extremes such as the Parthians at Carrhae having 4 cavalry archers for every cataphract, to a more balanced 6-to-4 ratio in Genghis Khan's armies. I being an Imperial player, I find it a bit off-putting to have to use my Knights as my disrupt-and-flee troops while my armored outriders sit in the back shooting stuff...the option to take core light cavalry as a means to marchblock, isolate, and set up the rest of the opponent's army for me to charge with a more elite heavy cavalry core would be nicer.

That said, let's go to your fluff arguments.

Reason 1: The problem with comparing the pistolkorp to a modern police academy is that it isn't so the analogy does not apply. They may have their stables and archery ranges, but their formal education would be comparatively slim, with battle as their primary source of training. Modern-day police academies don't send their cadets into warzones either.

Reason 2: It is true a responsible knight protects his charges. It is also true that the entire purpose of training as a Pistolier is to experience battle first-hand to develop the battle experience that is specifically required by many knightly orders. Given the choice between inducing two capable candidates, it would make more sense for the knight to induct the one who has encountered the 10-foot-tall tentacle spawn and triumphed.

Reason 3: This here is actually refuted by the fluff. Many pistoliers are specifically sons of nobility who wish to see their sons aspire to knighthood. So the families themselves, and not the Orders, are the ones to provide the pistols and horses. That said, a brace of pistols would presumaly be still much less expensive than full-plate gromril and horse.

On another note, not all pistol-wielding horsemen are members of the pistolkorp. It would be more likely that a mounted pistolier could be a gun-for-hire or a highway bandit conscripted into service, than a non-knightly order mounted thug would be wearing a suit of fine gromril...non? Which of course was why I was interested in seeing a general non-knight customizable unit as core, to represent everything from highwaymen, road wardens, or freelancer knights wearing second-hand iron breastplates. Imperial Knights are the elite, and it should properly show.

Offline Lord Etharion

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Re: Imperial Knights.
« Reply #28 on: June 28, 2009, 01:18:21 PM »
Gameplay wise: ... some stuff about parthians ...

I called it gameplay reasons because it's to do with how the game plays, not how history works: I don't want to sit accross the table from an empire player with 4-6 units of fast cav and the full set of specials. And as the guy fielding an empire army, I want more knights than pistoliers. If you're going to discuss gameplay, discuss gameplay.

That said, let's go to your fluff arguments.

Reason 1: The problem with comparing the pistolkorp to a modern police academy is that it isn't so the analogy does not apply. They may have their stables and archery ranges, but their formal education would be comparatively slim, with battle as their primary source of training. Modern-day police academies don't send their cadets into warzones either.

What is the relevance of this? All I said was that cops, like knights, have short training periods and long careers, therefore there should be lots of knights and few pistoliers.

Reason 2: It is true a responsible knight protects his charges. It is also true that the entire purpose of training as a Pistolier is to experience battle first-hand to develop the battle experience that is specifically required by many knightly orders. Given the choice between inducing two capable candidates, it would make more sense for the knight to induct the one who has encountered the 10-foot-tall tentacle spawn and triumphed.

So ..... what, exactly? How does this have anything to do with the relative frequency of knights and pistoliers.

Reason 3: This here is actually refuted by the fluff. Many pistoliers are specifically sons of nobility who wish to see their sons aspire to knighthood. So the families themselves, and not the Orders, are the ones to provide the pistols and horses. That said, a brace of pistols would presumaly be still much less expensive than full-plate gromril and horse.

The point still stands: fielding pistoliers is more expensive than fielding knights, regardless of who pays, so there won't be many of them.

And take another look at my post: I didn't say pistols were less expensive than full battle harness: I said full battle harness was cheaper than buying pisols and full harness. Because if a pistolier is going to promoted to a knight, you're going to have to buy both.

Keep knights core, pistols special.
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Offline Folken

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Re: Imperial Knights.
« Reply #29 on: July 03, 2009, 07:15:03 PM »
I really do not like the idea that the order significantly affects the statline.  I mean who likes the idea that if we want to use Kurt we have to bring Rikesguard?  We pick our knights just like we pick our state troops, because its colors and/or backgrounds that appeal to us. 

Offline Lord Etharion

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Re: Imperial Knights.
« Reply #30 on: July 04, 2009, 05:30:02 AM »
I really do not like the idea that the order significantly affects the statline. 

I agree, which is why I've always said that if you want to distinguish the orders, the way to do it is to create a magic banner for each of them.
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Offline MagicJuggler

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Re: Imperial Knights.
« Reply #31 on: July 04, 2009, 07:31:27 PM »
Except in the case you do not want to give free victory points away to your opponent, or to field multiple units of knights; its not like we're going to turn Knightly banners into Daemonic Icons after all...geez.

Offline Count Stephano

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Re: Imperial Knights.
« Reply #32 on: July 04, 2009, 09:28:08 PM »
Imo the pistolier -> knight fluff is stupid.

Wiki:
Quote
Evolution into Lighter Cavalry in the Later Sixteenth Century
Gendarmes faced a further challenge in the second half of the sixteenth century when confronted by a newly-emergent troop type, the cavalry pistolier, which fought with massed pistol fire in deep columns. In the battles of the French Wars of Religion, the pistoliers -- often German mercenary cavalry called Reiters or "Black Riders" -- shot down many of the gendarmes, and this created holes in the very thin lines of gendarmes which put the lancers at a significant disadvantage when they finally closed with the deep formations of pistoliers. As a result, the French, starting with the Huguenot rebels, eventually replaced the heavy gendarme lance with a "brace" of pistols, and the armour of the gendarme rapidly lightened to give the horseman more mobility (and to cut the extreme cost of fielding such troops).

« Last Edit: July 04, 2009, 09:30:28 PM by Count Stephano »
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Offline Lord Etharion

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Re: Imperial Knights.
« Reply #33 on: July 04, 2009, 11:28:20 PM »
Except in the case you do not want to give free victory points away to your opponent, or to field multiple units of knights; its not like we're going to turn Knightly banners into Daemonic Icons after all...geez.

Huh? Again, this makes no sense.

How does having a banner for the white wolves prevent you from fielding multiple units of them? You were the one who wanted knights to be special slots, that'll see a lot less of them on the field than giving them more options for magic banners.

Imo the pistolier -> knight fluff is stupid.

Meh, french gendarmes never had to fight lizardmen.
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Offline Count Stephano

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Re: Imperial Knights.
« Reply #34 on: July 05, 2009, 11:16:28 AM »
Imo the pistolier -> knight fluff is stupid.

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Meh, french gendarmes never had to fight lizardmen.

Really..... :dry:

Still doesn't change the fact the fluff about the pistoliers doesn't make any sense to me.  Fluff has to be somewhat logical and realistic/believable for me. But hey feel free to accept any fluff that is written. I delete the parts I don't like and make up my own fluff  :happy:.

I like to imagine that the pistoliers are made of the rich bourgeoisie serving there duty in the military.
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Offline Inarticulate

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Re: Imperial Knights.
« Reply #35 on: July 05, 2009, 03:51:29 PM »
I like to imagine that the pistoliers are made of the rich bourgeoisie serving there duty in the military.

Urr... they are?

Not all Knights are promoted from the Pistolier Korps! The Korps is made up of sons of nobles given fancy armour and pistols to go to war.
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Offline MagicJuggler

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Re: Imperial Knights.
« Reply #36 on: July 05, 2009, 05:01:36 PM »
All Pistolkorp are pistoliers but not all Pistoliers are Pistolkorp; there are also your assorted highwaymen, bounty hunters, and other assorted scumbags out to get you.

Again, the reason I want to see Knights put in Special is because they are supposed to be the Empire's finest, shining elites among the rest. When they're core, they're not Special, meaning they're just anonymous tincan stormtroopers. That's not right. Knighthood should be something to aspire to, and we should see that reflected in our armylists. This isn't just a mere switch from Pistoliers and Knight. We're looking to have our non-knightly cavalry capable of having heavy armor (no barding though) to represent freelancer knights, Order initiates, or other heavy units.

Likewise, the issue I have with chapter-specific banners is that this would prohibit taking doubles of said chapter of knights. Maybe Empire captains can take chapter upgrades before being allowed the option of being the appropriate BSB; for instance a Seneschal of the White Wolf would be a Captain with the Ulrican blessings, etc.

Offline Wolfsgaum

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Re: Imperial Knights.
« Reply #37 on: July 05, 2009, 09:04:09 PM »
Sorry, but the idea of making knights special just plain sucks.

There's simply a huge amount of knights in the Empire and their existence and number is key to its continued survival. If there's a battle, you are almost guaranteed that knights will show up to support your army. Besides, being able to field scores of knightly units is too cool to pass up.

That said, I always thought that the idea of pistoliers as knights in training was dumb.

Offline Lord Etharion

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Re: Imperial Knights.
« Reply #38 on: July 06, 2009, 04:21:05 AM »
Still doesn't change the fact the fluff about the pistoliers doesn't make any sense to me.  Fluff has to be somewhat logical and realistic/believable for me. But hey feel free to accept any fluff that is written. I delete the parts I don't like and make up my own fluff  :happy:.

Fair enough, but let me expand my point less flippantly:

Your source says that the gendarmes adopted pistolier tactics when faced with pistoliers. Specifically, it says that powerful enemy shooting messed up their charges.

Now look at the Empire, and the enemies it typically faces: Chaos to the north, Brets to the west, Orcs to the east, undead in sylvania. None of these guys have shooting of any significance, so there's no incentive for Empire knights to become more light cavalry.

Likewise, the issue I have with chapter-specific banners is that this would prohibit taking doubles of said chapter of knights.

No, no it would not. Did you even read my last post? There is a chapter-specific banner for white wolves, but it doesn't prevent you from taking multiples of white wolves.

The fact is the different knightly orders aren't all that different: They're dudes on a horse with a lance. The WHFB stat system has very low granularity: the difference between t3 and t4 is that between an ordinary human and 7 foot orc that can keep fighting after losing a limb. difference between s4 and s5 is an very strong human human and a frikkin dragon. So making stat differences between the orders effectively makes different orders members of different species. And the fact that some stats are far more useful than others means that the 'best' order is the only one that will get used: if WW gets +1 str and blazing sun gets +1 I, no-one will be using blazing sun knights.

Using magic banners allows you to communicate the flavour of an order without having that do things that are otherwise impossible for humas. It means that only one unit per army is going to be the pinnacle of white wolfyness or blazing sunnyness, but that's fine, the regular career knights of each order are going to pretty similar to one another, only the best knights are going to exemplify the virtues of their order so completely as to justify expression in the (low granularity) rules.

Put it another way: can you tell me any meaningful difference in equipiment or doctrine between contemporary units of, say, templars and hospitalliers? Or do you want empire knights to turn into 40k chapters, where each one is a caricature of the viking berserker or bloodthirsty maniac or whatever?

Anyway, who says knights are just 'anonymous tincan stormtroopers'? That's a totally unjustified extrapolation made from the fact that they are Core troops. Instead of giving them cheezy stat upgrades or preventing the rest of us from taking more than 2 units by making them special, why not simply recognise the fact that you can be a core troop and a shiny elite at the same time? Dwarf longbeards are, so are Lothern sea guard (fluffwise).
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Offline Perforated

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Re: Imperial Knights.
« Reply #39 on: July 06, 2009, 02:36:17 PM »

I completely agree, instead of making a lot of special rules for each order they should each have a magic banner that in some form emphasize what's so special about them.
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Offline MagicJuggler

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Re: Imperial Knights.
« Reply #40 on: July 06, 2009, 08:28:24 PM »
One problem Lord Etharion in regards to you saying that none of the armies mentioned had any proper shooting and that there would be no incentive to take light cavalry. That is the textbook incentive to take light cavalry. Aside from Tours, when has an army of infantry and cavalry with no proper ranged support defeat an army of light and heavy cavalry working in concert with each other? Again, we have Carrhae and Legnica to show as insane massacres in favor of light ranged cavalry.

Additionally, not all orders of knights are dudes on horse with a lance. White Wolves have their hammers. Blazing un Knights have their flaming swords. Knights Encarmine dual-wield cutlasses while mounted. The Order of the Sacred Scythe...take a fucking guess what they wield? Oh, you want doctrinal differences between Templar and Hospitaller? How about the Hospitaller due to their history of owning Malta possessing more naval training than their Templar bretheren, and subsequently being lighter armed and armored for boarding operations? They were knights and pirates, at once while the Templar were bankers first and knights second.

As for the assertion that Longbeards are elite, they have their special rules in place to prevent them from being taken en-masse. Same with Orc Big'uns...how about a compromise? Knights as core, but you cannot take more of them than you take other Core, unless you have a Grandmaster leading? I really don't see this altering many but the most extreme of builds (Order of the Holy Cannonball builds), and would still allow for TVI armies to be built properly.

Offline Wolfsgaum

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Re: Imperial Knights.
« Reply #41 on: July 06, 2009, 08:37:35 PM »
Blazing Sun knights have flaming swords?  :?
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Offline MagicJuggler

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Re: Imperial Knights.
« Reply #42 on: July 06, 2009, 10:01:21 PM »
Warhammer Online. I'm on the fence as to whether to consider it canon, but GW worked alongside EA mythic so I sadly must say yes. One of the lower-level (though not initial) abilities of the Blazing Sun class was called Blazing Blade, which would temporarily infuse their blade with magic energy. |

An idea could be to allow really insignificant abilities for core knights, better versions for IC knights, and one superability for the Grandmaster. Depending on if it could be tweaked, said ability could also be available in lesser form for a Seneschal. In the case of the Blazing Suns, I can see them possessing the following abilities:

Normal Knights: Flee. The player may declare to use this ability when fleeing for any reason. When rolling flee dice, you may roll 4d6 and discard the lowest.
Inner Circle Knights: Blazing Blade. Bound spell level=US of unit/2; add +2 if a Seneschal is in the unit, +4 if a Chapter Master is in the unit (or +1 or +2, depending on playtesting). When cast successfully, the unit receives +1 strength, flaming magical attacks as their blades radiate with Light energy. Against Daemons or Undead, this becomes +2 strength. Note this ability is cast by the unit of knights itself so an attached character can still use its Nova Strike.
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Offline Wolfsgaum

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Re: Imperial Knights.
« Reply #43 on: July 07, 2009, 12:02:12 AM »
Yeah, well, Warhammer Online is ass. There, I said it  :closed-eyes:

Offline Lord Etharion

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Re: Imperial Knights.
« Reply #44 on: July 07, 2009, 04:03:22 AM »
Yeah, well, Warhammer Online is ass. There, I said it  :closed-eyes:

QFT. Seriously, flaming swords? That's pathologically stupid.

One problem Lord Etharion in regards to you saying that none of the armies mentioned had any proper shooting and that there would be no incentive to take light cavalry. That is the textbook incentive to take light cavalry. Aside from Tours, when has an army of infantry and cavalry with no proper ranged support defeat an army of light and heavy cavalry working in concert with each other? Again, we have Carrhae and Legnica to show as insane massacres in favor of light ranged cavalry.

Okay, one, that completely flies in the face of the quote you posted earlier, and two, the enemies the empire faces aren't composed of light + heavy cavalry, so what you are saying doesn't apply, three, the empire has light cav, it's just that the metagame of the battlefield lies more in favour of heavy cav.


Additionally, not all orders of knights are dudes on horse with a lance. White Wolves have their hammers. Blazing un Knights have their flaming swords. Knights Encarmine dual-wield cutlasses while mounted. The Order of the Sacred Scythe...take a fucking guess what they wield?

You yourself admit this is of dubious canonicity. The knights encarmine come from one (bad) WD article and are impossible under the current rules. Even if they were possible, no-one is going to want 2hw knights when they could have lances. Scythes are great weapons. I'm not seeing the need for extra special rules to represent that.


Oh, you want doctrinal differences between Templar and Hospitaller? How about the Hospitaller due to their history of owning Malta possessing more naval training than their Templar bretheren, and subsequently being lighter armed and armored for boarding operations? They were knights and pirates, at once while the Templar were bankers first and knights second. '

So when they took the field on horseback they used different gear from the Templars? Didn't think so.


As for the assertion that Longbeards are elite, they have their special rules in place to prevent them from being taken en-masse. Same with Orc Big'uns...how about a compromise? Knights as core, but you cannot take more of them than you take other Core, unless you have a Grandmaster leading? I really don't see this altering many but the most extreme of builds (Order of the Holy Cannonball builds), and would still allow for TVI armies to be built properly.

My army wouldn't be effected by this, so it isn't really a big deal, but I object on principle to limiting the choices of players when it doesn't add anything to the game. Some people like playing order of the holy cannonball in no-comp environments, and who are you to tell them they're wrong?
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Offline der Hurenwiebel

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Re: Imperial Knights.
« Reply #45 on: August 06, 2009, 07:40:14 AM »
My preference would be for a similarly priced but very differently used cavalry unit also made core, perhaps something like the RW stradiots, or mounted men at arms.  I might also remove the 0-1 limitation on inner circle knights, I mean really as if there weren't more than one solitary squad of inner circle knights in an order, BAH.  Doing this would open up the options allow more fluff oriented army choices, hey you really might be fighting against a scouting element from a much larger army. 

WFB and many of it's players are very blinkered about the whole set peice battle concept of wargaming.  Wargames generally are more fun to play when considering a larger picture than the given table top in question, kind of why I hate tournaments.  They skew, to my way of thinking, the ideal of wargaming, which is creating and using a realistic or at least believable army. 

Whether your "army" is the personal close body guard of the emperor himself or the hastily raised militia of a small town in the marches of stirland, the army comp should be able to represent this in it's multiple options.  Yes 2000 points are still 2000 points and theoretically they'll be competitive with one another when used to their best, but they should look and act differently. 

Back to the imperial knights, why is it that when imperial knights supposedly graduate from the pistolkorps they give up their multiple pistols in favour of a knife on the end of a stick. 

Were it me, i'd say Yes to full armour, yes to barding, yes to getting stuck in and going face to face with the enemies of the empire, but let me keep my pistols damn it.  If knights really are the elite cavalry they are supposed to be and wealthy as they are supposed to be, why not have them go into battle festooned with pistols of hit up the engineers guild for a bulk discount and go with repeaters, squeezing off single shots or pairs per turn. 
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Offline Freman Bloodglaive

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Re: Imperial Knights.
« Reply #46 on: August 06, 2009, 09:28:04 AM »
 :mellow:

Keep knights as core, that way you can keep a full cavalry list. Make inner circle (rather than special) a half the units rounding fractions up kind of like Longbeards.

Pistoleers aren't what I regard as the prequel to Knights. They're rich kids practising war. If they go anywhere other than back to their own businesses it's to the Outriders.

Talking about Outriders, can they move and fire with their repeater handguns? I would have thought they could given that they're not really moving, their horse is. If not then they're not really any better than handgunners. Perhaps that's why I see so few lists with them in.
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Offline MagicJuggler

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Re: Imperial Knights.
« Reply #47 on: August 08, 2009, 02:51:27 PM »
The fluff specifically states that the Pistolkorps consists of the sons of nobility, and once they are battle-hardened, they'll either go on to serve in one of many knightly orders, or be recruited by the Imperial Outrider corps. The thing though is that while all Pistolkorps members are Pistoliers, not all Pistoliers are Pistolkorp; some also include road-wardens, highwaymen, and other unsavory types. Again which is why I want a core Reiter section as well.

Offline von Bildhofen

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Re: Imperial Knights.
« Reply #48 on: August 08, 2009, 06:00:29 PM »
The blessing for knights is a nice thought, but i think it would be best just keeping it simple with only one blessing, and also keep vanillas as core and IC as special as it is now.
I think IC just should be Immune to Psychology.

Simplicity is often the best solution.

Offline Freman Bloodglaive

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Re: Imperial Knights.
« Reply #49 on: August 09, 2009, 04:24:26 AM »
Also regarding the White Wolves, I think the reason they dropped the cavalry hammers back to great weapons is because +2 strength on the charge followed by +1 thereafter is better than the lances +2 strength on the charge. Against average troops a 2+ versus 1+ save is exactly the same as both fail on 1s.

That might be the reason that they dropped the great weapon bonus to +1 strength when mounted as again +2 strength in every round of combat (striking first if charging) is better than the lance's +2 strength on the charge.
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