The armies of the Civil War were made up of a variety of troop types to deal with different strategic and tactical situations. The prevailing doctrine of combined arms warfare was seen as the optimal way to use military resources for victory. To help players understand the troop options available, we’ve put together a hands-on review of all the major unit types in Grand Tactician: The Civil War (1861-65).
Here are the four main types of troops in Grand Tactician:
And here’s everything you need to know about the troops in Grand Tactician.
During the Civil War, the infantry were the bread and butter of any army, doing all the fighting and most of the dying. This is the most common type of troop and will provide an army with the most resilience and endurance, as well as a decent level of firepower, depending on the type of weapon it carries.
In addition to standing, marching, shooting, baying, and generally obeying orders, infantry brigades can detach riflemen, small squads of snipers and scouts, who can perform a variety of tasks. recognition, harassment and filtering tasks. Infantry can also build fortifications during battle which can range from hastily assembled parapets to solid trenches and parapets.
Infantry are generally the most flexible type of troops on the battlefield, but infantry brigades are generally quite slow and will take most of the player’s strength to have fully effective combat units.
Unlike the previous Napoleonic and Crimean wars where cavalry played a vital tactical role, involving impressive charges, by artillery and small arms from the American Civil War, rifled weapons became so deadly that the shock tactics of the cavalry have become expensive. As such, an effective way to deal with cavalry is to use mounted infantry skirmishers intended for harassment and reconnaissance.
The greatest strength of the cavalry is its mobility and speed, allowing cavalry brigades to reposition themselves quickly or exploit a weakness in enemy formation. It also translates into the strategic map where dedicated cavalry corps can advance past their infantry corps, gather intelligence, and even take on larger infantry formations if they have a lot of good ground to work on.
Cavalry can still engage in thunderous charges reminiscent of your old tactics, which can be particularly effective against a collapsing or fleeing opponent, but this requires extreme precision and careful timing for maximum effect and minimal losses.
The ultimate support unit and weapon of the future, artillery is an essential type of troop for any successful army. It gives divisions and corps great tactical flexibility to be able to strike enemy forces from a distance with pinned bombardments or support a defense with lethal cartridge blasts.
Artillery comes in two forms: on foot and on horseback. Foot artillery will make up the vast majority of the player’s support arm with the heaviest guns being here, while mounted artillery will be a specialized unit intended for rapid movement and surprise repositioning to strike a vulnerable enemy formation. .
Besides the two movement modes, artillery can also be divided into smoothbore artillery, which is ideal for short and medium range bombardments, and rifled artillery, which is best used for long range bombardments.
The Civil War was a great period of transition for the navies with the development of heavy-duty warships and the prevalence of steam engines. In Grand Tactician, there are a ton of warships of varying sizes, but players primarily need to be aware of the two main operational areas of ships: the river and the sea.
River ships can only operate on large rivers, which can be useful on the particularly large Mississippi River for blocking ports or supporting military movements. Seagoing vessels must stick to the open Atlantic Ocean and are great for blocking important commercial ports or even escorting disembarkation operations.
Some vessels can sail up rivers and also on the high seas, but these vessels are generally small to medium-sized generalist vessels intended to augment the specialized fleets already established.
While they don’t have a wide variety of troop types, the ones present in Grand Tactician are so well defined and so essential to effectively winning the war that there are virtually endless combinations and tactics to try. Now that players understand the general characteristics of each type of troop, the challenge is to find the right combination that fits into an effective military strategy.
Grand Tactician: Civil War (1861-65) is available on PC.
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