Multicultural armies are boring and make no sense

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Anushtegin

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i mean you only have to look at the normans in southern italy to immediately see how wrong the argument is. also, in pre-industrial societies, mercenaries and volunteers were expected to bring their own equipment and horses. only levies would be supplied with equipment, and that equipment would not be great to begin with. only recruiting from your own culture would mean your armies would be tiny. and contemporaries positively commented on the multi-ethnic army of mahmud of ghazna and how many advantages such an army has.

unless TW decides to brign in some mechanism were you can brign in notables of your own culture and the associated troops, it is really a moot point. what is really egregious however, is that a lord can recruit from villages of another faction in times of peace. this is unprecedented and should not be possible or a hostile act (forced recruitment).
 

HalfMetalJacket

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The types of soldiers you're describing existed only in some legions for a tiny slither of roman history. The Roman army was constantly changing, as were the armies of the germanic allies and frontier tribes who had so much contact with the Roman Empire that there would have been very little distinction between somewhere like northern gaul and west germania.

Similarly there would have been very no obvious material distinction between most foederati and most "regular" legionaries back then. Some foederati were basically just germanic warbands recruited wholesale into the army, but so were many "regular" auxiliary troops. Alaric himself was a Christian and a Romeaboo, something that was incompatible with the barbarian identity for a lot of Romans at the time. There is so much material and social contact over the danube-rhine frontier that to call the foederati "foreigners" is like calling a Texan or a Californian a foreigner to the USA.

This is part of the reason why I find it odd that some people want every troop type to be unique to that specific faction and then citing history as a motivation. Historically the only thing stopping a soldier from using one weapon or another was availability. There are some exceptions like horse archery and slinging, where you need a specific kind of society for people to learn how to use them, but even those are very rare.
Ty for the information. Still, I can't help but feel as if you might have addressed the wrong person. If not, I have poorly conveyed my thoughts.
 
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i mean you only have to look at the normans in southern italy to immediately see how wrong the argument is. also, in pre-industrial societies, mercenaries and volunteers were expected to bring their own equipment and horses. only levies would be supplied with equipment, and that equipment would not be great to begin with. only recruiting from your own culture would mean your armies would be tiny. and contemporaries positively commented on the multi-ethnic army of mahmud of ghazna and how many advantages such an army has.

unless TW decides to brign in some mechanism were you can brign in notables of your own culture and the associated troops, it is really a moot point. what is really egregious however, is that a lord can recruit from villages of another faction in times of peace. this is unprecedented and should not be possible or a hostile act (forced recruitment).
The argument is wrong if you reduce it ad absurdum. Sure, Normans and other were in Sicily, that is another well documented example.



I think we can easily all agree that there is no issue with recruiting and having troops from other background, in most cases.

But I think he is right to point out that he should be able to build an army with troops organized depending on his own kingdom. It is not natural that a war being waged in some area looks like a civil war with troops all formed as locally but against the culture of the host.

As a matter of fact, when you recruit troops, most of them (low-level at least) should be formed according your culture or the one of your kingdom (if different) unless you want otherwise.
And it should cost you something to do otherwise (more expensive level upgrade?). There should a limit about how many troops of different culture you can lead depending on your leadership stats.

That would lead AI to use much more troops according to its culture.

That would make sense and be incentive enough for AI to recruit as his own culture. Then was the original poster complains about would not be the case: he would be part of war of two differents kingdoms, not a civil war with troops mismatching both side.
 
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HalfMetalJacket

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But I think he is right to point out that he should be able to build an army with troops organized depending on his own kingdom. It is not natural that a war being waged in some area looks like a civil war with troops all formed as locally but against the culture of the host.

As a matter of fact, when you recruit troops, most of them (low-level at least) should be formed according your culture or the one of your kingdom (if different) unless you want otherwise.
And it should cost you something to do otherwise (more expensive level upgrade?). There should a limit about how many troops of different culture you can lead depending on your leadership stats.

That would lead AI to use much more troops according to its culture.

That would make sense and be incentive enough for AI to recruit as his own culture. Then was the original poster complains about would not be the case: he would be part of war of two differents kingdoms, not a civil war with troops mismatching both side.
I recall examples of soldiers joining the enemy to fight against their own people. There were Greeks in the invading Persian army, Irish Kerns serving England against the Irish, that sort of thing.

I do think recruiting troops of the enemy could be restricted. Maybe a newly conquered settlement isn't immediately taken over, but rather 'held' until the warring factions come to a peace agreement. During that time, the only way to recruit troops is via forced coercion.
 

Anushtegin

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why you always use words like "organized" and "formed"? there were no medieval boot camps and there was no medieval weapon industry. commanders used what troops they could get. and soldiery fought in their own ways and with their own weapons. it's completely wrogn to assume that in the 11th century anyone was forced into a specific way of warfare by his employer or that a lord had huge armories filled to the ceiling with weapons and armor of his own culture.

muslims and greeks in the norman kingdom continued to fight in their ways and with their equipment and normans and pechenegs in byzantine service fought accordign to their customs with their own weapons and armor like they were trained. did the varangian guard use menavlions and kite shields in this period? no, they had long-hafted axes and their large round shields. did mamlukes in arab service fight any different from how they fought in the steppes?

if you only want to recruit vlandian troops, fine. if you were given non-vlandian fiefs, you're still not entitled to recruit vlandian troops unless soemthing changes with the game mechanics.
 
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muslims and greeks in the norman kingdom continued to fight in their ways and with their equipment and normans and pechenegs in byzantine service fought accordign to their customs with their own weapons and armor like they were trained. did the varangian guard use menavlions and kite shields in this period? no, they had long-hafted axes and their large round shields. did mamlukes in arab service fight any different from how they fought in the steppes?
Here you're confusing the recruitment of locals with the practice of actively bringing in non-citizens to fight in an army. This was very common in the early to high middle ages but it's not the same as just levying locals.

The muslims who fought in norman armies were deliberately kept separate and trained as specialist archers. When the HRE inherited Sicily they relocated them to their own city and used them as administrators and soldiers.

The pechenegs, byzantines and varangians weren't citizens of the varangian state, instead they were basically mercenaries with their own military organisation. If there were normans or other minorities in the empire and they were levied, it's nonsensical to assume that they would fight and dress like normans from normandy. Weapon culture tends not to follow groups of civilians around.

The mamluks are a funny example because most of them were enslaved as children or young men in the caucases or crimea and sent over to egypt to be actively drilled as horse archers. Their equipment didn't resemble their homelands at all, and it's extremely unlikely that any of their skills except some knowledge of a horse would have carried over.

Basically my point is that weapons culture and martial culture usually aren't transmitted via civilian populations. If your average medieval village could produce its own weapons and train its own soldiers by its own customs, the state "controlling" them would have no power.
 

Anushtegin

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i was simplifying for the sake of argument. in the game currently there is no levy system, as it would imply those levies to return back to their regular line of work after the campaign they were raised for, but all troops raised are effectively a standign army, which for soem regions and cultures would be ahistorical.

as for your examples: muslims were granted privileges, they were however not trained as specialist archers. this was a skill set they already posessed. like i said, they fought according to their own customs, nothgin that had to be trained by their norman lords.

normans as mercenaries had their own weapons and armor, even in the byzantine empire. the whole point of mercenaries was to get an experienced and fully equipped body of troops already trained for warfare, rather than to deal with untrained peasant levies.

mamlukes again were not trained in horse archery. and by whom exactly? the very arab dynasties that were in need of those superior warfare skills in the first place? they were not kids either, they were captured and enslaved warrior tribesmen from the steppe nomads that roamed the pontic-caspian steppe, more or less in the same fashion as you already sell slaves in this game. they already brough the skillset that was needed of them. they did however not brign their own equipment with them, that is true.

Basically my point is that weapons culture and martial culture usually aren't transmitted via civilian populations. If your average medieval village could produce its own weapons and train its own soldiers by its own customs, the state "controlling" them would have no power.
yes, exactly my point as well.
 

burh321

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Have ever even seen a cover of a history book, in a bookstore, across the street? Because what you say is so contrary to history I don't even know how to start...
Back in the day there was pretty much no such thing as nationality, only ethnic and cultural differences, but those in no way stood in the way of recruiting levies. Sure, the population of a different culture could be more reluctant to obey, but in the end, unless they could revolt, they would join whatever lord currently rules their area to war because that's their obligation. And if they don't fulfill that obligation, bad stuff happens.
A regular peasant wouldnt even know what "country" they fight in, they probably wouldnt necessarily even know who their lord is at present. All they needed to know is that a recruiter visited their village and its time to grab a spear and shield and go. (or pay some money to avoid going, if they can)

Also, there's the fact that it was a very common practice to recruit troops from particular regions and ethnicity for their specialties, like Balearic slingers and Cretan archers in the ancient times, and genoese crossbowmen in the middle ages. I mean, the Varangian Guard of the Byzantine emperors was composed solely of Norse, and later Norman warriors.
I dont think thats his point. As i understood it, it doesnt make sense if a vlandian army recruits battanian recruits, and then those battanian recruits level up to become battanian units. They would pick up vlandian gear and go on to fight as vlandians. It doesnt make sense that an army would have their men dress up looking identical to their enemy. If vlandia then went on to conquer the whole world. it doesnt make sense that only a small portion of their armies look like actual vlandians. Because as they conquer new land they would spread their culture to the land and convert the people to their way of life.
 

Askorti

Sergeant Knight at Arms
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I dont think thats his point. As i understood it, it doesnt make sense if a vlandian army recruits battanian recruits, and then those battanian recruits level up to become battanian units. They would pick up vlandian gear and go on to fight as vlandians. It doesnt make sense that an army would have their men dress up looking identical to their enemy. If vlandia then went on to conquer the whole world. it doesnt make sense that only a small portion of their armies look like actual vlandians. Because as they conquer new land they would spread their culture to the land and convert the people to their way of life.
It also doesnt mnake sense to recruit a peasant fresh off the fields and in the course of a week train and equip him as a top-notch fighter, while paying a tiny fraction of what youd normally pay for the equipment he gets. But it's a gameplay abstraction that we just accept.
 

Bigamo

Banned
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I dont think thats his point. As i understood it, it doesnt make sense if a vlandian army recruits battanian recruits, and then those battanian recruits level up to become battanian units. They would pick up vlandian gear and go on to fight as vlandians. It doesnt make sense that an army would have their men dress up looking identical to their enemy. If vlandia then went on to conquer the whole world. it doesnt make sense that only a small portion of their armies look like actual vlandians. Because as they conquer new land they would spread their culture to the land and convert the people to their way of life.
EXACTLY! Exception being the Khuzaits, as their home style of fighting is very specific for their culture.

And the history debate is fun, but it's losing entirely the point as it forget the possibilities of the game.

What would be a Sturgian mercenary elite troop fighting for the bizantines would be either the empire hiring the subculture of birds or a Sturgian lord being in the empire faction and still using it's own people as troops.

Actually each kingdom could have its own rules.

For instance:
Khuzaits, as it is. As the mongols really didn't convert or really ocupy the conquered places, they were all converted to client stats and give a lot of gold and nice stuff (including women) or everyone dies.

Empire factions recruit imperial units, but other lords joining the empire still used their original culture troop tree. That would represent pretty close how romans and specially bizantines acted. But there already auxiliary factions in the game, so IDK.


And Vladians, Bathania, sturgians and Asserai should recruit from their own culture. And even the Southern italy normans while using the greeks and arabs there as troops didn't really changed any of the cores of their organization to make it fit. And were not dependent of those troops. When Boemund and Tancred depart for the first Crusade a lot of those troops were together, still they always are described as normans all the time, and still relied on the Norman style of fighting all the time, as in the siege of Antioch were Boemund and his riders single handed saved the crusaders from defeat when Boemund flanked the Turks with his riders and then pressed f1-f4 to beat Turk cavalry and then advance into de archers.
 

Apocal

Sergeant Knight
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And the history debate is fun, but it's losing entirely the point as it forget the possibilities of the game.
Then don't use history as an example of why something should (or shouldn't) be done in the game.
 

burh321

Recruit
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It also doesnt mnake sense to recruit a peasant fresh off the fields and in the course of a week train and equip him as a top-notch fighter, while paying a tiny fraction of what youd normally pay for the equipment he gets. But it's a gameplay abstraction that we just accept.
Yes, but speeding up the process of a unit leveling up, for gameplay reasons, is fine. Because it benefits the gameplay and makes the game more enjoyable. You know what else would make the game more enjoyable? If they maybe implemented a system where villages and towns not offers soldiers that are of that locations base culture, but rather have those villages and towns offer soldiers of the current culture. Or maybe make a building that can be built to change the culture in a certain location.
 

BlazingScribe

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Throwing my hat into the ring here. Personally I found culturally diverse armies to be the most interesting part of medieval conflicts. The Varangian guard is a personal favorite example of mine. They're a colorful addition to the story. It would be a real shame if were impossible for either the player or the AI to take advantage of multi-cultural armies in at least some cases. That said, those units were often specialists or auxiliaries, and were not the majority of the army. With that in mind, I have a mechanical suggestion based on how the Warband Prophesy of Pendor handled this issue. This should allow some multiculturalism while still having some amount of faction dominance.

In Prophesy of Pendor, this was handled in two stages. First, specific AI lords could recruit specialized units that sometimes went so far as to be unique to them. As an example, Baron Godrick supplemented his army with Red Fletcher Longbowmen. These characteristics helped differentiate the lords from each other in combat and in politics, and provided the player with an opportunity to recruit units that would others be impossible to get otherwise. In the case of Bannerlord as it is at time of writing, these unique units could be minor faction units (say, a particular lord or clan in the empire can get Lost Legion troops), or a specific class of units from another faction (a Vlandian lord recruiting specifically Battanian Wildlings and that skirmisher line).

Stage 2 in Prophesy of Pendor related to the player determining the culture of their settlements. As king, the player could determine the preferred culture of their troops. But even if they did this, they could still get the option of recruiting troops of the original culture occasionally (20% of recruitment attempts I think). When I played the game, I made it a rule that once I created a kingdom, I could only use troops that I could get from my own territory. Same could apply to Bannerlord. When a faction takes over a settlement, maybe notables in that faction can move or be replaced. Some of the original culture will stay but over time you'll be able to get a mix of units. If you wanted to add restrictions (which generally I don't like but for the sake of argument), maybe you could set it so that you could only get noble troops that reflect the culture in power. So only Battanians can get Battanian Fian, only Vlandians can get Knights, only Imperials can get Cataphracts.

In an ideal world, I think that the factions should feel distinct from eachother. And for the most part they do. But it would be better still if individual clans and lords would feel distinct from eachother, and unit diversity, preferences, and multi-culturalism could help with that.
 

Anushtegin

Regular
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Throwing my hat into the ring here. Personally I found culturally diverse armies to be the most interesting part of medieval conflicts. The Varangian guard is a personal favorite example of mine. They're a colorful addition to the story. It would be a real shame if were impossible for either the player or the AI to take advantage of multi-cultural armies in at least some cases. That said, those units were often specialists or auxiliaries, and were not the majority of the army. With that in mind, I have a mechanical suggestion based on how the Warband Prophesy of Pendor handled this issue. This should allow some multiculturalism while still having some amount of faction dominance.

In Prophesy of Pendor, this was handled in two stages. First, specific AI lords could recruit specialized units that sometimes went so far as to be unique to them. As an example, Baron Godrick supplemented his army with Red Fletcher Longbowmen. These characteristics helped differentiate the lords from each other in combat and in politics, and provided the player with an opportunity to recruit units that would others be impossible to get otherwise. In the case of Bannerlord as it is at time of writing, these unique units could be minor faction units (say, a particular lord or clan in the empire can get Lost Legion troops), or a specific class of units from another faction (a Vlandian lord recruiting specifically Battanian Wildlings and that skirmisher line).

Stage 2 in Prophesy of Pendor related to the player determining the culture of their settlements. As king, the player could determine the preferred culture of their troops. But even if they did this, they could still get the option of recruiting troops of the original culture occasionally (20% of recruitment attempts I think). When I played the game, I made it a rule that once I created a kingdom, I could only use troops that I could get from my own territory. Same could apply to Bannerlord. When a faction takes over a settlement, maybe notables in that faction can move or be replaced. Some of the original culture will stay but over time you'll be able to get a mix of units. If you wanted to add restrictions (which generally I don't like but for the sake of argument), maybe you could set it so that you could only get noble troops that reflect the culture in power. So only Battanians can get Battanian Fian, only Vlandians can get Knights, only Imperials can get Cataphracts.

In an ideal world, I think that the factions should feel distinct from eachother. And for the most part they do. But it would be better still if individual clans and lords would feel distinct from eachother, and unit diversity, preferences, and multi-culturalism could help with that.
as for the first part, they should do this via the currently underdeveloped and lackluster mercenary system. and i don't mean the minor factions but the mercenaries you can recruit from taverns. there's still lots more room for horse archers, varangian guards and so on. the current genric western units are really borign, too.