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Author Topic: Tactica: The Griffon Formation  (Read 49318 times)

Offline MrAbyssal

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Re: The Griffon Formation
« Reply #50 on: June 20, 2012, 12:08:26 AM »

Swordsmen ARE expensive compared to our other core, but I think they are a good defensive unit.

I run them as detachments and they behave ok so far.

I'd run them with Greatswords for the Stubborn. Medium stubborn swordsmen detachments would make a good road block until you can get the Greatswords or something else hard hitting in.
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Offline Holy Hand Grenade

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Re: The Griffon Formation
« Reply #51 on: June 20, 2012, 10:19:26 AM »
Absolutely-  Swordsmen are a good choice for the main block's detachments.  As another poster in the thread mentioned, they are also good as a bus as the main block.

I personally use Halberds as the detachments because I want them to kill a few bad guys while they are sacrificing themselves for the greater cause.  If you have enough killing power in the rest of your list, then Swordsmen are a premier choice.


Buff Support
How prayers and buff wagons work with the formations was asked earlier too-  I didn't expand on them because I didn't want to clutter up the discussion in the beginning-  but below are a few graphs I worked up on my thoughts on how they could fit in.

The first one is placement of one or two arcane altars straddling the rear wizard bunker.



All of their buffs will likely not reach all the main line detachments.  Running one is a little easier-  I would put it on whatever side you think needs the most love.



As far as passing out buffs, the AL/WP in the main block will of course pass their buffs on to the two side detachments while the buff wagons range what they can from the rear.  However, with a horde as the main block, it is unlikely you can keep everything in range once movement and combat starts.



Another option with one buff wagon is to have it run vertical (the triangle shows its facing in the graph) to get more out of the rectangular chariot base to reach more distance and more easily cover the detachments.  This might seem WAAC to some-  personally I can imagine a leader or important symbol running up and down the front line of troops right behind them to motivate them (and in this case, buff them).



With a bus formation as the main block you will likely have to run a buff wagon to one side or the other because of its depth. 

Also, with the Inverted Griffon, you could squeeze a buff wagon in vertically but it gets really tight back there.  After your first movement, the buff wagon could face forward with your wizard bunker running 3 or 4 wide next to it.  Whatever floats your boat.   

Like the other graphs, these are just suggestions.  The only limitation is your imagination and army list. 
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Offline Lord Solar Plexus

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Re: The Griffon Formation
« Reply #52 on: June 20, 2012, 11:00:41 AM »
One thing to remember is that your wizard might have 24" range spells that you wish to use on turn 1 or that he doesn't have proper LoS to his ideal target in the back row. It certainly works a treat if it is a purely boosting wizard.

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Offline Volks

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Re: The Griffon Formation
« Reply #53 on: June 20, 2012, 11:51:53 AM »
Yea. It works ok with Light magic though - which is my favourite.
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Offline Calisson

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Re: The Griffon Formation
« Reply #54 on: June 20, 2012, 11:55:52 AM »
... Also, with the Inverted Griffon, you could squeeze a buff wagon in vertically but it gets really tight back there.  After your first movement, the buff wagon could face forward with your wizard bunker running 3 or 4 wide next to it.  Whatever floats your boat.
With the inverted Griffon formation, the shooters in the rear, babysitting a wizard, can be arranged on a thin line. The buff's range would reach the main parent unit, across that thin unit.
The buffs would benefit to both parents units and to the combat detachments.
In order for the buffs to benefit the archer detachment units, they would have to be within range of their own parent. That point seems a little bit tricky. Maybe you could do some research with your graphs and check that? I tried with a raw drawing below.

archer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . archer
det . . M-A-I-N-R-E-G-I-M-E-N-T . .det
DET. . M-A-I-N-R-E-G-I-M-E-N-T . .DET
DET. archer main regiment+wiz. .DET
. . . . BufWag . BufWag . BufWag

The good point with buffing across the rear parent unit is that you have enough space to place all 3 buffing wagons.
« Last Edit: June 20, 2012, 12:06:50 PM by Calisson »

Offline Lord Solar Plexus

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Re: The Griffon Formation
« Reply #55 on: June 20, 2012, 02:13:00 PM »
It seems it would be hard to keep the leftmost detachment in range of the rightmost buff wagon and vice versa. The Lumi and Hurri boosts do not transfer from the parent.

In fact, it could be dicey to even keep both detachments in range of the central wagon, so unless it is a Waltar, you might have to decide to go for one side over the other.

Lastly, the main archer regiment's main functions seem to be as a detachment provider, a wiz bunker and a last-minute diverter. It usually doesn't need to transfer any benefits to its detachments. In fact, I don't see all that many useful boosts for 5 archers intended to run interference.
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Offline Calisson

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Re: The Griffon Formation
« Reply #56 on: June 20, 2012, 08:27:21 PM »
Forgot about wizcart buffs not transferring to detachments.
Agree with all that you said.

Offline mr chumley warner

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Re: The Griffon Formation
« Reply #57 on: June 20, 2012, 08:33:18 PM »
i love the complexity of an empire generals mind!

We've all lost so horribly in past games, that the imprint on your mind of such losses forces you to continually think up ever more elaborate deployments and strategies, to out smart and out manoeuvre

I've never seen an Empire player just say sod it , and plonk down 300 state troops for the charge
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Offline Cursain

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Re: The Griffon Formation
« Reply #58 on: June 20, 2012, 09:00:48 PM »
i love the complexity of an empire generals mind!

We've all lost so horribly in past games, that the imprint on your mind of such losses forces you to continually think up ever more elaborate deployments and strategies, to out smart and out manoeuvre

I've never seen an Empire player just say sod it , and plonk down 300 state troops for the charge

With all those 4000 pt games you play chumley, I'm sure 300 is normal ;)

Offline Holy Hand Grenade

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Re: The Griffon Formation
« Reply #59 on: June 24, 2012, 08:42:51 AM »
I played a couple of more battles this weekend using different formations.

The updated Battle Report thread is here:  http://warhammer-empire.com/theforum/index.php?topic=42976.msg717447#msg717447

I modified my original post to include a link up front for the Battle Reports for new people reading the thread-  so I don't have to keep posting at the bottom.

As always, I hope to generate discussion and suggestions.   :::cheers:::
« Last Edit: June 24, 2012, 08:54:36 AM by Holy Hand Grenade »
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Offline Bing

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Re: The Griffon Formation
« Reply #60 on: June 27, 2012, 05:21:15 AM »
Wow, what a great discussion!  I use similar principles in my deployments, but tend to be a bit more flexible since you can never know what your opponent has or deploys. Also, I tend to have some of my redirectors be Spearmen instead of archers, since they're cheaper, hold as speed bumps just as long or marginally longer than archers do, and in a very small block of 5-7 they are still very manoeuvrable.

COMPOSITION:
1 x horde - this is the killy thing. GS in a big points game, Halberds in a lower points game
     1x redirector detachment (usually a small block of 5 cheap spearmen, or archers, deployed in front)
     1x combat res support charge detachment (usually swordsmen, deployed on the flank)

1 x bus - This will anchor down a flank, usually spearmen with banner. Sometimes in bigger games stick the BSB in here with Griffon Banner for static combat res. with
     1 x redirector detachment - as above
     1 x bunker detachment (used to be characters couldn't join detachments...  But I haven't seen a rule against it in 8th!)

Other things:
2 cannons - one on each flank, in the rear
1 Chaff/deployment drop - often archers, sometimes spears. They end up doing a similar thing as the parent archer unit in Griffon (die quickly)
1 HBVG (sometimes) - This is more to protect a vulnerable flank against knights or other high points, 1w, fast-moving flankers.
Celestial Hurricanum - in the rear, boosting both horde and bus
War Altar (again depends on points) - I use this one less now since it's no longer unbreakable (used to be great flank protector), and deploy similar to Celestial
Steam Tank on a flank if big points game (and depends on points and what I'm likely to face)

DEPLOYMENT:
Standard deployment looks a lot like the Griffon formation, except that I replace one of your counter-charge dets with the Bus.
Oh, and I tend to stick a wizard in with the bus instead of the bunker, so he's in range to fire off offensive spells. I'll pop him out before combat starts, or sometimes leave him in there if I don't think the threat is large. I always run at least two wizards, so one more goes in the bunker to cast buffs.


I usually put my bus down before the Horde. That way, I have the option of switching to the alternate "flank crushing" deployment. I don't use this often, but it can be very effective against certain deployments.
For example,  if my opponent has a large, slow-moving hard-to-kill thing in the middle / left but puts a juicy target on the right flank that can't easily get away:

--------------OPP DEPLOYMENT (e.g. Lizardmen)-----------------------------
          COK  Skink   Sally   TGuard    Skink    Saurus
                                                                  (target)       


--------------------------MY DEPLOYMENT---------------------
 L             -Chaff-             Det2-  -Det1    --HORDE---   R
 E                                     -         -Det1   --HORDE---    I
 F                                               -BUS-   --HORDE---   G
 T                                    Det3-   -BUS-        Bunker     H
                                        -         -BUS-    CH               T
 E                                     Can     -BUS-    CH   Can           
 D                                     non     -BUS-    CH    non     E
 G                                               -BUS-                       D   
 E                                               -BUS-                       G
                                                                                  E
                                                                           
The idea with this is to hug the flank and hit the target on the right with the horde, using magic to clear his redirectors (or charge through them if he made a mistake and you can overrun into the target).
Use the bus to stop anything from hitting the horde in the flank, which probably means engaging his main threat with the bus. Typically, the horde will be in combat one turn before the bus anyway.  Use the detachments to redirect things away / block off the bus' flank.
If I have a HBVG, it goes where Det3 is.

Offline Holy Hand Grenade

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Re: The Griffon Formation
« Reply #61 on: June 27, 2012, 11:42:23 AM »
Great stuff Bing, thanks for posting.

You are basically using the Bus as a replacement for a detachment in the Griffon-style formation.  Costs more points but will certainly last longer on the table.

Spearmen detachments work almost as well as the archers and definitely a viable option if points are getting tight.

I like your horde-on-the-flank maneuver-  especially if it surprises your opponent.

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Offline Swan-of-War

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Re: The Griffon Formation
« Reply #62 on: June 27, 2012, 12:55:02 PM »
Great work Holy Hand Grenade, you've articulated a lot of what current Generals are doing and integrated some new ideas of your own.  A solid resource for empire players new and old.  Pretty slides too!

 :mrgreen:


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Re: The Griffon Formation
« Reply #63 on: June 27, 2012, 01:15:13 PM »
Thanks for the idea!  I like it. 

One thing that I was thinking of is a way to save points.  If you want to fight one unit and delay the others (the point of it all, right?), then why do you want the regular Griffon?  I like the Inverted Griffon.  You have your Wizard Bunker and you have your diverters, but you leave the front open the horde up to actually fight.  If you just delay everything, you delay it all until the enemy can hit you with it all. 

So.....what else do you use for the rest of the army?  I am not wanting to join the band wagon and go with Demi Griffons.  Do you need to have Knights to make it work?  Can you use another infantry unit?  Maybe Greatswords?  Or does it have to be cavalry? 

EDIT:

Made a list and posted here for review!  http://warhammer-empire.com/theforum/index.php?topic=43078.msg718319#msg718319
« Last Edit: June 27, 2012, 01:47:42 PM by Rutgar of Wissenland »

Offline Ratarsed

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Re: The Griffon Formation
« Reply #64 on: June 28, 2012, 06:23:21 AM »
Have you been able to test how your strategy works when the scenario messes with deployment such as Dawn assault? Also how it copes with the Watch Tower scenario? Does it have the adaptability to cope with different scenarios?

Offline Holy Hand Grenade

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Re: The Griffon Formation
« Reply #65 on: June 28, 2012, 10:11:00 AM »
Have you been able to test how your strategy works when the scenario messes with deployment such as Dawn assault? Also how it copes with the Watch Tower scenario? Does it have the adaptability to cope with different scenarios?

Good question.

I have not ran up against strange deployment scenarios since I wrote the thread.

However, when the Griffon Formations were being shaped in my mind and play-tested I did run into a Dawn Attack, Battle in the Pass and Meeting Engagement.  Fortunately, in Dawn Attack I was able to put the diverters and horde near the edges of their deployment zones and bring it all together on my first move.  And when rolling for reserves in the Meeting Engagement, I rolled everything on the table to start-  so not really a test of what you are asking.

But if you can't create the formations in the beginning-  not too big of a deal...just use the units tactically the best you can.  I don't think the deployment shuffle really effects these formations as much as having trolls deployed outside the Leadership bubble for example or Generals that have specific army builds that have to be deployed a certain way to work.

As far as the Watchtower, it would allow you some archers in the building with some archer detachments to screen it right off the bat.  (I am assuming the detachments get to deploy near their parent-  not sure how detachment deployments in this scenario have been ruled on).  Otherwise, getting the horde in the building with detachments in support seems the best bet for victory.

Comments from anyone else?
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Offline Noght

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Re: The Griffon Formation
« Reply #66 on: June 28, 2012, 11:35:49 AM »

As far as the Watchtower, it would allow you some archers in the building with some archer detachments to screen it right off the bat.  (I am assuming the detachments get to deploy near their parent-  not sure how detachment deployments in this scenario have been ruled on).  Otherwise, getting the horde in the building with detachments in support seems the best bet for victory.

Comments from anyone else?

I know there will be an argument but Units with Detachments can't deploy into the Tower because than the 3" Detachment deployment rule gets violated.  Send the screeners to block and drop the Horde in.  (And then we can argue about Steadfast timing and Building Rules again  :-) WOOT!).

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Offline Ambrose

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Re: The Griffon Formation
« Reply #67 on: June 28, 2012, 01:13:39 PM »
Well, I tried my first game with the Griffon formation.  It worked for the most part but here are the following problems I had;

1 - deployment space:  With starting only 12" in I had JUST enough room to place the griffon formation of 10 archers in front to screen, 40 halberdiers behind in horde formation (10x4) and my luminark just behind (did not have enough points for the archer bunker).  The luminark was sitting right on the back line of the board with no room behind.  This is okay, because I did not intend to flee at any point!  :biggriin:

2 - Terrain:  Terrain was a big problem for me redirecting throughout the match.  With a swamp to the right of me, and impassible terrain the left of me, it was very difficult positioning my archers to redirect enemy units coming in.  I was hesitant to set up with the griffon formation once I saw how the terrain was set up, but I was so determined to try the griffon formation I just ploughed through it and set up like I originally intended.  Although I think this was an error on my part, it allowed me to get a hint of how the griffon formation CHOULD work.

Overall, for my first attempt, the griffon formation was fun.  The effectivenss was definately dependant on my opponent and the lay of the land, but I don't think that took away from it, more it made me have to think and plan all the more (which I REALLY enjoy).

I look forward to trying this formation (and it's variations) in the future.

Ambrose
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Offline Holy Hand Grenade

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Re: The Griffon Formation
« Reply #68 on: June 28, 2012, 01:26:51 PM »
Well, I tried my first game with the Griffon formation.
Overall, for my first attempt, the griffon formation was fun.  The effectivenss was definately dependant on my opponent and the lay of the land, but I don't think that took away from it, more it made me have to think and plan all the more (which I REALLY enjoy).

Ambrose-  glad to hear it!  I know you really wanted to try out the Griffon, but my recommendation for future matches would be to place your forces where terrain works to your advantage.  Be flexible; the units you are fielding can be used in so many different ways.

One thing that I was thinking of is a way to save points.  If you want to fight one unit and delay the others (the point of it all, right?), then why do you want the regular Griffon?  I like the Inverted Griffon.  You have your Wizard Bunker and you have your diverters, but you leave the front open the horde up to actually fight.  If you just delay everything, you delay it all until the enemy can hit you with it all. 

Rutgar-  I responded to the list you posted in the Parade Grounds and forgot to answer your questions here.

The Inverted Griffon does keep your horde front clean and it offers all the advantages as the regular. 

I typically use the normal one however and have no issues in getting the front archers out of the way-  either by swinging them to an important side as a flank diverter or literally using them as a frontal roadblock.  The opponent has to charge them at some point and then they flee away.

So.....what else do you use for the rest of the army?  I am not wanting to join the band wagon and go with Demi Griffons.  Do you need to have Knights to make it work?  Can you use another infantry unit?  Maybe Greatswords?  Or does it have to be cavalry? 

Examples of what I have tried can be seen in my Battle Reports Thread.

But, I think the answer to your question is that it can be whatever you want.  Another bus or horde, cavalry, arty, whatever.  One of the things I love about Empire is that there is no "cookie-cutter" list. 

When I first decided to share these ideas and name them with fluffy names, I was happy that even if someone adopted some of the formations it would be far from cookie-cutter.  Some may use Halberds, some Greatswords, some a Sword bus; they may use one or two detachments and of different types; some like archers diverters, some spearmen, etc, etc...   The rest of the list is also wide open.

Like LSP eloquently stated, I only named the butterfly... but was not its maker.   8-)
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Offline Holy Hand Grenade

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Re: The Griffon Formation
« Reply #69 on: July 01, 2012, 01:35:07 PM »
Ran the Inverted Griffon this weekend-  great battle against a tough Vampire Counts list.

Link to the start of the Battle Report in my thread:  http://warhammer-empire.com/theforum/index.php?topic=42976.msg719362#msg719362     

Looking for comments on the formations of course, but am also interested in the VC tactics as well if you have any (might start it as a secondary army when I reach my Empire goals).
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Offline Holy Hand Grenade

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Re: The Griffon Formation
« Reply #70 on: July 02, 2012, 09:24:56 PM »
I meant to add this after action comment from the battle to the above post but forgot.

Anyway-  I wanted to add this to the discussion and get your comments:

"The Griffon Formation and alls it diverters really help in getting off the charge with the center horde.  Now, charges are not as critical as they used to be in 7th Edition, but there is something to be said for having the charge happen on your turn-  because in your magic phase you know those troops are going to be in combat and when you spend precious Power Dice to buff them up they are not wasted dice. 

Nothing worse than spending Power Dice on buffing up troops (and not using them to nuke/effect other targets) when the troops never end up in combat because your opponent decides not to charge them on his turn because of their buffed-up state.  These little things make all the difference between victory and defeat."

Thoughts?  How has this worked out in your battles?
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Offline Lord Solar Plexus

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Re: The Griffon Formation
« Reply #71 on: July 04, 2012, 08:23:32 AM »
I'm sorry that my main contribution seems to be picking holes in your balloon but I still have a couple of questions.

1. I don't have as many archers to replicate the original Griffon. What do you recommend one could use instead?

2. Do you think a similar approach is possible without an archer parent but with a combat parent and just its two detachments (say, 5 archers, 20 combat troops)? It would have to have a different name (uncreative standard 7th edition deployment perhaps?) and could obviously not be set up so intricately...

3. Does running combat detachments 3- or 4-wide really help at all? They don't need ranks of 5 to be SF if within 3" of course but they do not lose just one attack from the fifth guy, they don't get supporting attacks either, and if that isn't enough, they cannot even disrupt the opposition anymore. Is their only role the stubborn anvil?

4. Speaking of anvils, the formations seems to be quite good at keeping the horde safe on its way to the homerun. The question that came to my mind is whether the GS horde can be expected to defeat its opposing number on its own. Sure it is an elite unit, sure it probably has some WP/wizard/altar support but at the end of the day, the opposition has similar tools and we're back to fighting 1:1, since our detachment support is engaged elsewhere. Does it all come down to deployment, to find the chink in the opposing battleline and crash through that?
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Offline Holy Hand Grenade

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Re: The Griffon Formation
« Reply #72 on: July 05, 2012, 01:17:14 AM »
Awesome questions.

1. I don't have as many archers to replicate the original Griffon. What do you recommend one could use instead?

You could run an Inverted Griffon with the rear parent being another ranged type if you have them or even a long single file of spearmen.  Spearmen could reform after the formation moves away and still be a decent bunker for a mage.

However, I think I wouldn't bother with this and just use my answer to question #2.

2. Do you think a similar approach is possible without an archer parent but with a combat parent and just its two detachments (say, 5 archers, 20 combat troops)?


This is exactly what I used to do before creating the Griffon.

One example of a great setup would be if you had two main blocks side by side, each with one diverter and one combat detachment.  All the detachments go towards the flanks and the middle is secure because the two block are mutually supporting.  Like so:



Of course, you don't have to have another horde to protect the opposite flank-  it could be a bus, cavalry, STank, whatever.

 
3. Does running combat detachments 3- or 4-wide really help at all? 

My combat detachments usually start on the table as 3-wide or 4-wide...  but it really depends on what the opponent has.  If he has elite forces, nasty critters, etc they stay that way.  Only getting 5 elite models in base contact with the detachments is MUCH better than 7 elite models which appears to be the norm frontage anymore. 

I run them the normal 5-wide in two circumstances:  if they facing off against a unit that has lots of models and is deep so the extra frontage will give me attacks if I get the flank; or if they are facing off against sub-par infantry and I want a greater number of total attacks.

One of the things I love to do is change them up as the game goes along.  I will reform them to suit whatever the next threat they are facing is.

4. Speaking of anvils, the formations seems to be quite good at keeping the horde safe on its way to the homerun. The question that came to my mind is whether the GS horde can be expected to defeat its opposing number on its own.

I can only speak to my experience-  but at 2500 points I have yet to lose my horde in 10+ battles.  The detachments have usually kept their flanks secure while the Greatswords do their work.  Also, the formation usually allows me to get the charge off-  which as mentioned previously allows me to throw Power Dice their way to buff 'em up.

Even if they get nuked by some magic spell and lose half their number, I have been able to use them to fight what they still can handle and hold off units I don't want to fight with the detachments.

 :::cheers:::
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Offline Lord Solar Plexus

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Re: The Griffon Formation
« Reply #73 on: July 05, 2012, 05:33:13 AM »
Awesom answers, HHG, thanks a lot!
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Offline Raulmichile

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Re: The Griffon Formation
« Reply #74 on: July 06, 2012, 05:23:41 PM »

So, you normally are not looking for rank disruption with your detachments as they rarely go 5 wide for what I can see.

Is that correct?
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