How to make castles matter

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Captain_Octavius

Sergeant Knight
WB
This, there was a mod (sadly outdated now) on the nexus that changed the AI so they would always priorize border fiefs to siege and it made things SO MUCH BETTER, you knew the armies of both warring factions would be massed alongside the borders so there was also more field battles aswell since they wouldn't miss each other so much by deciding each other to siege the capital deep into enemy territory.

The logic was something like army leaders would priorize taking fiefs closer to their own fiefs to increase their security by adding buffer fiefs between their heartlands and the enemy, it was simple and so effective, a shame the mod hasn't been updated in a long time and no one made a separated version just with the AI change. Party AI overhaul and Commands

I updated the mod yesterday.
 

ceprast

Recruit
Firstly, my argument was that wagon-based supply caravans weren't standard in the context of offensive medieval warfare and the idea of a frontline (as opposed to a less vaguely defined frontier) is the unrealistic one, not armies sometimes dolphin diving holdings.

Secondly, I named my sources. For the specifics of the Crecy campaign, including their forces living mostly off foraging (by which I mean taken from people on or near their march route), it was Road to Crecy: The English Invasion of France, 1346 by Mary Livingston and Morgen Wiztel. For the claim that (on the offensive) medieval logistics were generally based on local area forage (not supply caravans), Feeding Mars by Martin Creveld.



AI armies only carry a few days' worth of food on-hand and usually begin to starve in enemy territory. Armies starving constantly has been an issue before and continues to occasionally be an issue now.
First, the argument was that
"IRL a bunch of border castles wouldn't stop an army 12,000 to 20,000 strong from prancing across the countryside for months on end. People just don't like the way it looks or plays out in Bannerlord."
IRL that was precisely what border castles were meant for, to house garrisons which could threaten the communications of an advancing army. That is why they were built to accommodate larger numbers than they were actually garrisoned with. They did a very good job of it which is why Medieval European warfare was centered around sieges not battles. Armies could not advance without reducing fortifications in their way which prevented them from re-supply and threatened their communications.

Again, the English Chevauchee's were exceptions not the usual result. Had it not been for incompetent French leadership during the Battles of Crecy, Poitiers, and Agincourt you would be reading about how the foolish English had gotten themselves trapped and captured during those battles and lost the war. As it was the English were forced to fight battles they did not want to because they had abandoned their lines of communication. Furthermore the English strategy ultimately failed, they lost the gains of those battles and were reduced to holding a few ports, because those ports were their supply bases and they were unable to maintain control beyond because the French still held the castles.

Secondly, I am not familiar with Mr. martin but if he is implying that because foraging was common that armies were not constrained by the need for lines of communication he is wrong. Sieges were far more common than battles and supplying a siege was necessary. The local area could not support an army long enough to maintain a siege.

As for the game, the AI doesn't get bothered by food because once a castle falls it has a small garrison, which means it falls very quickly again. Armies don't need to sit and siege for a long time, they build a ram and then win an auto resolved battle in just a few days. I've seen the Khuzait take Western empire castles because they were first taken by the Eastern empire then the Khuzait just march all the way across without any concern and snipe it while it has a low garrison.
 

Anistec

Recruit
Would love to see castles as training grounds...you can leave your troops and they train...but not something you can do in a city...so you dont have to run around exping new recruits and also now castle will be viable...they gonna have a use
 

DJenxu1

Veteran
Yes all armies of the time foraged, armies of major states continued to forage until WWII where Germany, Japan, and the USSR were well known for it.这并不意味着他们仍然不依赖通信线路来接收供应。陆上运输货车的低效率也不会改变这一点,它只是限制了军队的作战范围,如果有什么事情意味着超越支援的限制是一个更糟糕的想法,由于行李车中的货车效率低下,在掠夺时不会简单地消失。

是的,他们也依赖水运,水运只是物流的另一种形式,也是防御工事经常建在河流上的原因。防御工事不仅在防守上被使用,而且在进攻上被用作向前的杂志,从中提取补给,并作为竞选的起点。无论是否在友好的领土上,如果没有补给,军队就无法维持。当地几天内就会精疲力尽。此外,从友好的当地人那里征用物资与掠夺敌人是完全不同的事情。前者可以由地方官员在不使用军队的情况下完成,而后者要求军队分裂并暴露在危险中。这正是更大的法国军队赶上英国军队的原因。另一个例子是1066年哈罗德国王从斯坦福桥到黑斯廷斯的3月。在一周内,他的军队有序地行驶了数百英里,没有疲劳,因为他们在沿途有后勤支援。

我不知道你从哪里得到中世纪军队会忽略他们的通信线路的想法,但这是错误的。那些几乎总是以灾难而告终,而不是像阿金库尔那样。从中世纪到现代,堡垒被专门用于保护通信线路,时期消息来源明确指出,堡垒是军队的障碍,因为它们威胁到通信线路。

至于游戏,如果你没有看到人工智能忽视物流,你似乎和大多数人有不同的体验,因为这里的其他人,包括OP,似乎都注意到他们只是忽略距离,就像攻击隔壁一样容易地攻击敌人领土另一边的城堡。原因很简单,当军队可以携带食物的时间比他们需要的时间长得多时,军队行进到那里的额外一天并不重要。
[/引用]
Agree
 

Apocal

Grandmaster Knight
Armies could not advance without reducing fortifications in their way which prevented them from re-supply and threatened their communications.

And yet, they did anyway. Why was it that the English were able to move thousands of men around the French countryside for months? Either French border fortifications weren't doing the job of stopping their supply caravans or the armies were able to subsist off local area forage. How were the frequent large-scale raids of the Iberian peninsula conducted? How did first the Arabs then the Seljuk Turks remain such a persistent threat to the interior of Eastern Roman Anatolia, even in the face of unreduced, uninvested border fortifications?

Why didn't any of these armies go hungry and fall apart?

Again, the English Chevauchee's were exceptions not the usual result.

Your claim. I deny it.

Had it not been for incompetent French leadership during the Battles of Crecy, Poitiers, and Agincourt you would be reading about how the foolish English had gotten themselves trapped and captured during those battles and lost the war. As it was the English were forced to fight battles they did not want to because they had abandoned their lines of communication. Furthermore the English strategy ultimately failed, they lost the gains of those battles and were reduced to holding a few ports, because those ports were their supply bases and they were unable to maintain control beyond because the French still held the castles.

This is pretty irrelevant the point being made. Taking your claim at face value -- "Armies could not advance without reducing fortifications in their way which prevented them from re-supply..." -- then the French should've needed zero tactical competence. Starvation should have done all the work necessary. But the English didn't collapse due to starvation, in spite of being in the French interior for months.

Sieges were far more common than battles and supplying a siege was necessary. The local area could not support an army long enough to maintain a siege.

Sure. But that's not the solution people are proposing in this thread, that local area forage be a consideration. It is all various combinations of flypaper mechanics for castles on armies, designed explicitly to create a frontline when that sort of thing was firmly post-medieval.
 

ShotgunJed

Recruit
WBNWVC
There are lots of good suggestions and discussion here, but most likely TaleWorlds won't be adding supply lines, nor will they make castles useful because this game is intended to appeal to the mass casual audiences. Making the game require thinking and strategy, goes against its design to be a medieval version of Fortnite intended for a young and low attention span audience, who only like constant combat.
 

Harkon Haakonson

I am woman, hear me roar!
Marquis
M&BWB
And yet, they did anyway. Why was it that the English were able to move thousands of men around the French countryside for months? Either French border fortifications weren't doing the job of stopping their supply caravans or the armies were able to subsist off local area forage. How were the frequent large-scale raids of the Iberian peninsula conducted? How did first the Arabs then the Seljuk Turks remain such a persistent threat to the interior of Eastern Roman Anatolia, even in the face of unreduced, uninvested border fortifications?

Why didn't any of these armies go hungry and fall apart?



Your claim. I deny it.



This is pretty irrelevant the point being made. Taking your claim at face value -- "Armies could not advance without reducing fortifications in their way which prevented them from re-supply..." -- then the French should've needed zero tactical competence. Starvation should have done all the work necessary. But the English didn't collapse due to starvation, in spite of being in the French interior for months.



Sure. But that's not the solution people are proposing in this thread, that local area forage be a consideration. It is all various combinations of flypaper mechanics for castles on armies, designed explicitly to create a frontline when that sort of thing was firmly post-medieval.
You're so dumb and obstinate that you keep picking on a single case in history, when the guy is telling you why it was exceptional, and when in hundreds of other wars and conflicts such things could literally never happen. If castles were irrelevant and easily bypassed as you assume, siege warfare wouldn't have been the huge deal it's always been in medieval Europe.
 

Apocal

Grandmaster Knight
You're so dumb and obstinate that you keep picking on a single case in history
...
First of all:
How were the frequent large-scale raids of the Iberian peninsula conducted? How did first the Arabs then the Seljuk Turks remain such a persistent threat to the interior of Eastern Roman Anatolia, even in the face of unreduced, uninvested border fortifications?

Secondly, it's actually more like seven (major) cases during the HYW alone.

Thirdly:
If castles were irrelevant and easily bypassed as you assume, siege warfare wouldn't have been the huge deal it's always been in medieval Europe.

It was siege-centric because castles represented the center of administration and control over the region's population and resources, not because they could flypaper armies in place. Quoting John France's "Western Warfare of the Age of Crusades, 1000-1300" (pg 102):
It was the combination of a network of castles and cities with a field-army which was the great strength of the Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem. Saladin invaded the Kingdom of Jerusalem in 1177 and Smail noted: “Saladin ignored all the strong places which lay in his path and swept on towards Ramla and Jaffa; yet those strong places influenced the campaign in many ways. They did not halt the enemy at the frontier, nor prevent his temporary control of the open countryside. But intact they remained as the repositories of lordship.”
 

kreamy

Sergeant
Castles need a Master of arms notable that allows you to recruit nobles and better quality troops.
+1, but something not game breaking. Like, in a week you can get 1 or 2 troops (maybe none sometimes, and a tier 4-5 troops maybe once a month~). ~ like 50-100 men in a year, i think thats reasonable.
 

stevehoos

Banned
There are lots of good suggestions and discussion here, but most likely TaleWorlds won't be adding supply lines, nor will they make castles useful because this game is intended to appeal to the mass casual audiences. Making the game require thinking and strategy, goes against its design to be a medieval version of Fortnite intended for a young and low attention span audience, who only like constant combat.

Yep, and that means 5 minute siege battles.
 

ceprast

Recruit
And yet, they did anyway. Why was it that the English were able to move thousands of men around the French countryside for months? Either French border fortifications weren't doing the job of stopping their supply caravans or the armies were able to subsist off local area forage. How were the frequent large-scale raids of the Iberian peninsula conducted? How did first the Arabs then the Seljuk Turks remain such a persistent threat to the interior of Eastern Roman Anatolia, even in the face of unreduced, uninvested border fortifications?

Why didn't any of these armies go hungry and fall apart?



Your claim. I deny it.



This is pretty irrelevant the point being made. Taking your claim at face value -- "Armies could not advance without reducing fortifications in their way which prevented them from re-supply..." -- then the French should've needed zero tactical competence. Starvation should have done all the work necessary. But the English didn't collapse due to starvation, in spite of being in the French interior for months.



Sure. But that's not the solution people are proposing in this thread, that local area forage be a consideration. It is all various combinations of flypaper mechanics for castles on armies, designed explicitly to create a frontline when that sort of thing was firmly post-medieval.
You are pointing at exceptions and claiming its the rule. Those cases were not only unusual throughout the world they were unusual in their own time as well. The Chevauchee's were unusual even for the hundred years war, most of it was the usual siege warfare. It's kinda been forgotten about since historians have something of an anti-french bias but the English had their asses kicked for most of the hundred years war. Within thirty years of Crecy the French had reduced the English to holding just a few ports. The Iberian raids you mention occurred at the same time, it was in fact part of a proxy war between the English and French. There were also some raids between the Kingdom of Granada and the Spanish but even so the majority of the reconquista was also based on the classical siege warfare.

And dear god why did you have to make things so easy on me by bringing up the 1177 campaign of Saladin? He got absolutely dunked on by king Baldwin precisely because his army was disorganized while foraging for supplies. Here's a quote from the wiki " Muslim historians considered Saladin's defeat to be so severe that it was only redeemed by his victory ten years later at the Battle of Hattin in 1187". He didn't make the same mistake twice however, the purpose of the battle of the Horns of Hattin was to neutralize the effect of the castles by luring their garrisons out and annihilating them. Only once that was done he was able to operate freely. That's exactly the fate that the French should have dealt to the English at Crecy, which is kinda why it matters.

The Seljuks had early successes against the Byzantines with raiding but even then they spent most of their time very concerned with fortifications, both establishing their own and reducing those of their enemies to facilitate their own offensive actions. I doubt you would have used the Seljuks as an example if you realized that the Georgians, Crusaders, and Byzantines did use fortresses to protect themselves from the Seljuks successfully. Hell the Georgians absolutely crushed a Seljuk army which is likely what led to their downfall. I don't know why you bring up the Arab conquest, they attacked when the empire was weakened from war with the Persians from a direction that was not protected against, they took the fortified places easily they didn't bypass them. This is very similar to what happened in the previously mentioned Umayyad invasion thought that wasn't due to castles simply the Umayyad neglect of logistics.

Fortifications prevent re-supply, and without re-supply an army is of course forced to forage. Foraging operations cause them to spread out which leaves them at a severe disadvantage. This fact is why armies of the past rarely bypassed fortifications. The mere presence of the forts would usually prevent further progress until they were reduced. When they did bypass them they either left a containment detachment or just accepted the risk. Of those armies that did accept the risk they usually paid for it. This is a far cry from simply "prancing" on by as you alleged.

You can deny all you want but at the end of the day you are trying to challenge fundamental military principles held by military scholarship, so the burden of proof is on you to demonstrate that fortifications were ineffective. There actually are some examples but you'll find that its due to some clever stratagem that forts are bypassed without having to reduce them. They are still obstacles that must be overcome.

As a further aside, the idea of a front-line is hardly a post-medieval concept. Have you heard of Margrave's, Marquis', Marcher-lords? There were also a number of East Asian equivalents during their feudal era's. They mean Frontier lords and guess what they used to defend their frontiers with? Castles. For example the Earl of Pembroke was considered a Marcher Lord and they used Pembroke Castle as a base to defend against the Welsh. Given that the interior of England was rarely troubled by the Welsh from 1138 when the Earldom was established to 1415 when the last welsh rebellion ended I'd say it was rather effective.

And as for the game, multiple suggestions have been posted here not all of them are simply flypaper. Some are simply people suggesting that the AI prioritize places on its own border rather than across the map. See the AI targets places based on manpower over any other consideration and for one that breaks the fourth wall because the AI is effectively omniscient and knows what all the garrisons are and two makes for very bad gameplay as the AI will just siege and counter siege places with small garrisons and ignore everything else. I've also found that because of this its hard to actually defend a place because if you move your army into a place to defend it the AI just selects another target.
 

ceprast

Recruit
Yep, and that means 5 minute siege battles.
Yeah sieges had all the hype in the press releases but they turned out to be a real let-down. The AI is absolutely retarded, and the inability to really control your groups is a horrible choice. I don't want to send my cav and skirmishers up ladders thank you very much but the game just lumps them in with infantry so off they go and you lose all the guys with expensive warhorses.
 

Apocal

Grandmaster Knight
And dear god why did you have to make things so easy on me by bringing up the 1177 campaign of Saladin? He got absolutely dunked on by king Baldwin precisely because his army was disorganized while foraging for supplies. Here's a quote from the wiki " Muslim historians considered Saladin's defeat to be so severe that it was only redeemed by his victory ten years later at the Battle of Hattin in 1187".

Because my point isn't (and was never) that it always worked, but that foraging through enemy territory was a bog standard practice of the time. Additionally, I quoted the source indicating that his master stroke of genius for bypassing Crusader border fortifications was... simply walking past. That was it.

The Iberian raids you mention occurred at the same time, it was in fact part of a proxy war between the English and French.

I'm referring to the entire Middle Ages across Iberia, predating the HYW. Large-scale raids (and smaller ones as well) were a constant feature of the region, in spite of somewhat extensive fortification. It is to support the point that bypassing castles and foraging wasn't exceptional but utterly common.

I don't know why you bring up the Arab conquest

I didn't; I brought up their cross-border raiding.

You can deny all you want but at the end of the day you are trying to challenge fundamental military principles held by military scholarship, so the burden of proof is on you to demonstrate that fortifications were ineffective.

I quoted my sources, man. If you want more I'll provide, but it would be nice if you'd engage with them.
 
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ceprast

Recruit
I quoted my sources, man. If you want more I'll provide, but it would be nice if you'd engage with them.
You are trying to make your sources say more than they actually do.

For the Crecy campaign you are ignoring that it was unusual even for the war it was fought in. Crecy, Poitiers, and Agincourt get biased attention in English sources because they were major English victories. But typically the war was fought in the standard reduction of fortifications, because those fortifications prevented forward progress. The chevauchees were themselves not only limited in scope but they were themselves limited by the presence of the French fortifications. The English did not simply abandon their supply lines, they were just conducting a brief move through enemy territory to another supply base. Did your source not mention that they almost did get trapped and destroyed by starvation? Did your source not mention that the English were trying to unite with their allies and a supply fleet from England? Did feeding mars not mention the hundreds of thousands of surviving documents of the Kings of England detailing their logistical efforts on campaigns proving they did not simply rely on local forage but needed to maintain lines of communication? Did your sources not mention the English Fortification effort of their French holdings such as Chateu Gaillard, which did in fact prevent the French from advancing until they were reduced?

You and Mr. French seem to be drawing very different conclusions Than Mr. Saladin did. Saladin's blunder of ignoring the castles was an aberrition which directly led to the destruction of his army, a lesson he learned about the efficacy of castles and a mistake he never repeated.

As for raiding in general, Iberia or elsewhere, the question is not whether or not raiding occurred but were border fortifications effective in stopping it, and the answer is yes. From German barbarians, Vikings, Moors, Welsh, Scots, Turks, and Mongols the answer to raiders was always build fortifications and establish garrisons to intercept them. This forced such raiders to concentrate into large armies which were inefficient for raiding, and is why they all either abandoned raiding as their primary method of warfare or were defeated. You are again pointing to exceptions in places like Iberia. where a few great raids that were able to ignore fortifications do not typify the many centuries of the reconquista. If you read the histories of the military orders or the biographies of El Cid and the Alfonsos you will get a list of sieges and battles that occurred around sieges and the operations that went into building and maintaining supply lines.

There is a reason why medieval armies rarely advanced beyond operational depth while ignoring fortifications in their rear. Despite the fact that they could pillage some food and fodder they still relied on lines of communication for supply.
 

Apocal

Grandmaster Knight
The chevauchees were themselves not only limited in scope but they were themselves limited by the presence of the French fortifications. The English did not simply abandon their supply lines, they were just conducting a brief move through enemy territory to another supply base. Did your source not mention that they almost did get trapped and destroyed by starvation?

Yes, it was mentioned that an attempt was made to trap the English. Road to Crecy is a day-by-day accounting of the campaign. But as for the relevance of what we're discussing:
  • the fords and bridges across the Somme was being guarded by a hastily raised French field army.
  • foraging was typical enough the French had a plan to counter it by stripping the land south of the Somme.
And again, my argument doesn't rely on foraging being risk-free or always successful, only that it's typical of the era and that's why castles alone didn't stop armies from marching onwards.

You and Mr. French seem to be drawing very different conclusions Than Mr. Saladin did. Saladin's blunder of ignoring the castles was an aberrition which directly led to the destruction of his army, a lesson he learned about the efficacy of castles and a mistake he never repeated.

France's work there is actually drawing much of its support from the crusaders' opinions:
Elsewhere in the kingdom the crusaders built castles in virtually all of the strategic points, many of them brilliantly sited. The effect of the massive castle-building of the twelfth century was to create a network of fortifications, many of which were not particularly strong. They served the useful function of housing garrisons and providing refuge against raiding. Their worth was, however, limited. Most of the lordships of the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem were suffering severe impoverishment well before 1187, probably because of the increase in raiding and the commensurate increase in defence costs. The real defence of the kingdom was the Frankish field-army, which could deter sieges of the real underpinnings of the kingdom, the cities: it was a point well made in the debate before Hattin.

The debate before Hattin being among the crusaders, of course.

You are again pointing to exceptions in places like Iberia. where a few great raids that were able to ignore fortifications do not typify the many centuries of the reconquista. If you read the histories of the military orders or the biographies of El Cid and the Alfonsos you will get a list of sieges and battles that occurred around sieges and the operations that went into building and maintaining supply lines.

Just to reiterate, this was my argument:
IRL a bunch of border castles wouldn't stop an army 12,000 to 20,000 strong from prancing across the countryside for months on end.
 
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Jason L.

Master Knight
O.K. let's try get those 🏰 castles more important..

1) make them sprawling patrols of hi tier troops, not very big ones, that go around like bandit hideouts do. It shouldn't be difficult to apply. Those could interrupt caravan passing through and give a hand to friendly lords fighting enemies near castles.

2) Give bonus of influence for conquering castles (and towns also).

3) Give a market to castles also, so that armies can get supplies there.

4). Give castles a range of influence where the food consumption of enemy armies is doubled or multiple anyway. So crossing enemy territory is penalized.

There you are...
 
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Terco_Viejo

Spanish Gifquisition
Grandmaster Knight
One solution that came up in an old Warband mod (Bluebloods) for making castles matter more, was to have enemy parties significantly slow down in a radius around the castle. That way fleeing enemies could more easily be caught by allied parties, and slows down an enemy campaign through allied territories.

But until the AI starts taking bordering settlements rather than interior settlements, that wouldn't be a fully satisfactory solution.

giphy.gif

UnfriendlyTerritory (MOD)
 
O.K. let's try get those 🏰 castles more important..

1) make them sprawling patrols of hi tier troops, not very big ones, that go around like bandit hideouts do. It shouldn't be difficult to apply. Those could interrupt caravan passing through and give a hand to friendly lords fighting enemies near castles.

2) Give bonus of influence for conquering castles (and towns also).

3) Give a market to castles also, so that armies can get supplies there.

4). Give castles a range of influence where the food consumption of enemy armies is doubled or multiple anyway. So crossing enemy territory is penalized.

There you are...
5. Have noble recruitment at the castle instead of villages.
 
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