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Mounted Crossbowmen

Miles Christi
(@montfort1218)
Eminent Member

I posted this in the other forum, so apologies, but I'd love to see mounted crossbowmen, as they were quite common in high medieval armies.  They should probably have to choose between shooting and moving in a turn; these are just mobile outriders, not Turkish horse archers.

Volo vincere cum meis, vel occumbere cum eisdem.

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Topic starter Posted : 08/12/2020 10:01 pm
Andy Hobday
(@andy-hobday)
Member Admin

I agree, we will take a look at adding these. I didn't add them in the BW rulebook as I don't believe they were widely used during the civil war - please correct me if I am wrong. 😊  

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Posted : 09/12/2020 8:40 am
abikapi2
(@abikapi2)
Active Member

Do they shot after dismounting?

Is Mounting/Dismounting an action?

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Posted : 09/12/2020 4:40 pm
abikapi2
(@abikapi2)
Active Member

I know a little the Italian situation:

Till the end of XII century there is documentation of Knight accompanied by arcieri “cum equis” (bowmen with horses) but I don't know if they were only mounted infantry.

Saracen horse archers appear on the Italian soil following Federicus II Hohenstaufen (another interesting Actor of this period), at the Battle of Cortenuova in 1237.

First mention of Mounted Xbowmen is by Lega Lombarda in 1248.

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Posted : 09/12/2020 5:02 pm
Miles Christi
(@montfort1218)
Eminent Member

@abikapi2 @andy-hobday  I'm afraid I'm more familiar with the French than English evidence so I don't know if they played a big part in the Barons' War; I imagine they were the sort of scouting troops that wouldn't have figured large in the chronicle evidence.  In France, they show up as a dedicated category in King Philip Augustus' military expenses of 1203–4.

 

As to whether they shot from horseback or served as mounted infantry, I don't think there is much evidence one way or the other.  I'm not a horseman myself, but I don't see why they couldn't have shot while mounted (the higher perspective might even have afforded its advantages), though they wouldn't have been able to hit anything if they were on the move (unlike the Muslim horse archers mentioned by abikapi2).

Volo vincere cum meis, vel occumbere cum eisdem.

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Topic starter Posted : 09/12/2020 5:32 pm
Miles Christi
(@montfort1218)
Eminent Member

The problem I suppose would be reloading from horseback: the spanning mechanism on the crossbowman's belt works using the leg and trunk muscles to draw the bow, and one couldn't achieve the same force in stirrups.  Perhaps they used a different spanning mechanism, lighter crossbows, or indeed served as mounted infantry.

Volo vincere cum meis, vel occumbere cum eisdem.

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Topic starter Posted : 09/12/2020 5:43 pm
abikapi2 liked
Andy Hobday
(@andy-hobday)
Member Admin

@abikapi2 mounting/dismounting isn't an option however we could add rules for them to "dismount" when they are reloading and firing that changes their stats, using an Ability Token to indicate they are in the process.

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Posted : 10/12/2020 9:36 am
Tonius
(@tonius)
Eminent Member
Posted by: @andy-hobday

I agree, we will take a look at adding these. I didn't add them in the BW rulebook as I don't believe they were widely used during the civil war - please correct me if I am wrong. 😊  

Maybe I am mistaken, but can't  you make mounted crossbowmen through the mounted sergeant entry?

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Posted : 30/12/2020 9:31 pm
Andy Hobday
(@andy-hobday)
Member Admin

@tonius your not mistaken, I thought I had removed it!  Very pleased it is still there as it saves us a job. 😀 

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Posted : 31/12/2020 11:32 am
Tonius liked
Miles Christi
(@montfort1218)
Eminent Member

I was working on my shiny new BW2 crossbowmen yesterday, and was reflecting that there is still a need for mounted crossbowmen from a miniatures perspective, even if they are accounted for in the rules.  I'd like to do some standing horses with dismounted crossbowmen alongside, but the models would need to be dressing for riding, i.e. wearing stirrups and a surcoat (or some other garment with slits in front and back to suit the saddle) rather than a tunic.  I can scrounge around (Mirliton I think does at least one suitable model) and make some conversions, but I'd love to get Paul Hicks to do a much better job, if it fits into any plans for future Kickstarters!

Volo vincere cum meis, vel occumbere cum eisdem.

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Topic starter Posted : 19/02/2021 3:03 pm
Andy Hobday
(@andy-hobday)
Member Admin

@montfort1218 I'd like some mounted crossbows too, we will have to see what I need to offer Mr Hicks to do them. 🤣 

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Posted : 19/02/2021 7:22 pm
JannerXI
(@jannerxi)
Active Member

I haven’t come across any mention of mounted crossbowmen participating in combat during the First Barons’ War.

There seem to have been hunting crossbows used from horseback in this period, however, but they appear to have been much smaller.

Some crossbowmen, of course, would have had access to horses. The problem is, as has been mentioned, loading a military crossbow when mounted. Given the obvious stress on the weapon of transporting it drawn, this suggests crossbowmen would have need to either dismount to load their weapon before using it or passed it to a dismounted colleague for loading. 

On light horse archers, there is an intriguing mention of King Richard retaining ‘Saracens’ in his employ in Normandy in the late 1190s.

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Posted : 02/03/2021 8:23 am
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