Those are good tactics. I play on realistic and your tactics would work in a normal battle (That's pretty much my normal plan, in fact). The problem comes when you get huge battles with one or two waves of reinforcements. Since your troops have just taken too much damage over the whole battle, they start to die off. The result is that you end up losing loads of high tier troops that you just wouldn't lose in a battle with the same odds but smaller numbers.I play on easy so that may be why I do well. My army comp is 50 shielded imperial troops, 40 archers, 20 cav (not archers). I use all imperial troops. Shields are a must for infantry, put them in shield wall formation. If there is a hill I put inf at top of hill and archers behind in skirmish (F1 F4) Once the enemy get close. Send cav in immediately to head off the enemy and give you time to set up. Once inf and archers are close to where you want them call the cav back. Put the cav in a position so that when the two inf lines meet the cav can charge in from behind, or attack enemy archers if they’re doing a lot of dmg. DONT charge with inf in shield wall, it breaks up the formation and makes them more vulnerable. Advancing is okay but preferably keep your inf still and use your archers and cav to bring the enemy to your inf line Once inf lines meet I like to move the archers to a 90 degree angle from my inf line so they have better angles to shoot the enemy. I typically stay with the archers to protect them from enemy cav. Then send in my cav to wreck the enemies back lines.
Like I said I play on easy cus I’m looking for entertainment not a challenge; but following this formula I will destroy an equal force with maybe 1-3 losses. I might lose around 5-10 if fighting an enemy twice my size.
When I go into the massive pitched battles, I do the exact same thing. The only difference is I typically don’t get to choose where to set my inf line. I have to match my ally AIs starting line and they typically “advance” until they meet the enemy. So archers get immediately place on skirmish, inf shield wall then advance, cav: charge, slow down enemy inf, fallback. I may lose 5-10 troops in an equal size pitched battle, a few more against superior numbers and considerably less against weaker foes.
Again, I’m playing on easy so that will make a considerable difference but if it cheeses the AI that well on easy, surely it’ll work on realistic with only a few more casualties. (Or perhaps that’s just naïveté)