Army Composition / Armies outliner / Army management / Knights & Commanders

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May 21, 2016
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It is very often requested to be able to raise levies, MAA and mercenaries separately. I'd go one step further, and suggest to introduce Army Composition.

This would serve several purposes :
- raising specific combinations of levies/MAA depending on the need
- bring several QoL features to the Armies Outliner
- open up possibilities for additional rules to bring more strategical and tactical depth to the combat

Army Composition

The interface would be pretty much the actual Army Reorganization screen. The difference would be that on the left side, you would have all your unnassigned and unraised levies / MAAs
* Levies would be split by holding / vassal, much as they are now​
* MAAs would be split by stacks of a 100, in order to be able to distribute different types of MAAs in different army templates​
You can move to the right any stack you want to put in your template, you can name your template where it now says says "New Army", and this will be the name that will be displayed in the Outliner when the army is raised.

When you want to create a second army, any troops assigned to Army #1 won't be available anymore. You only see troops that are not already assigned to a template, and that are not already raised.
At all times, any and all unassigned levies/MAA constitute the Reserve Army, composed of all that's left by default.

Army outliner

Since you name your Armies, those names would be used on the Armies Outliner, which in itself would make the damn thing practicle, because for the moment, I can't tell at a glance wether my siege weapons are in the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th or 5th Army of Wherever I raised them.

But we could also imagine that Armies could be raised directly from the Ouliner, by selecting an unraised army in the list, and clicking on the map, like we do for Councillor tasks for exemple.

So Armies would always be on the Outliner (much like your Holdings), in different colors or with different icons depending if they are Unraised, Standing, Moving, Sieging, In combat or Retreating.

With a system like that, the spawn point could almost be done for. Maybe it could be replaced by 2 buttons on counties you own, for :
- raising the Reserve Army
- raising all armies at once
like a panic button of some sort

Additionnal rules and mechanical changes for strategic depth

Those are rules which could alter the gameplay quite considerably. The 1st one about Special Troops shouldn't be too divisive, the other ones probably a bit more so !
They are seperate from the previous, more practical ideas, which could be implemented whitout changing the rules of engagement. But those rules are a possibility to look into.

Armies management

- Special troops, Mercenaries, Holy Orders cannot be merged between each other, or with your regular troops. They are their own Army template that you can raise and disband at will, but they will remain distinct at all times


- Armies cannot be reorganized on the field. In order to reorganize armies, you would need to disband them, and raise them again, with a cooldown. They cannot be split, and cannot be merged. That would be true as well for the Reserve Army.

Commanders and Knights

Several things are a bit weird in how Commanders and Knights work at the moment.
- You can't decide where your knights go without heavy micro-managing
- The Player Character never fights with his knights, for some reason
- You can't teleport MAAs accross the map anymore, but you can teleport Commanders without any issue
- One character can be leading Army A and fighting as a knight in Army B at the same time

I would suggest the following
(nb : Knights and Champions are supposed to be the same thing, Feudal vs Tribal. I'm redefining the terms in the following)

- The realm has a limited number of Champions it can recruit
- Each Army template has a limited number of Champions you can affect to it
- All Champions tied to an army are Knights in that army, and any Champion but only a Champion tied to an army can be Commander of that army
- Any Army template that includes a Vassal's levy will also include the Vassal as a Knight in this army, if he is not leading his own army in his own war.
(Vassals could be either permitted to be used as a Commanders, but with the risk that they vanish if the Vassal goes to war, or forbidden completely from being Commanders for practival purposes. Not sure what I prefer)

That means that max number of Champion per Army becomes a thing that would have to find its place in the Perks, giving the ruler a tactical advantage, as he can have a more diverse cast of Commanders in one army, in order to switch on the fly.

That also means that Commanders cannot be teleported anymore, which makes chosing them all the more important.

It also gives some weight to Champions. As far as I'm concerned, I never much care for messages telling me someone's been injured or whatnot, because I don't know who my Knights are. They are selecter automatically, and I don't care much for it (except that sometimes I forbid my heirs from beign Knights, but I forget to do it every single time one of them comes of age... so there are mishaps).

You could even imagine having their respective opinion of each other influence their performance like in Total War Three Kingdoms (that might be a staple of the series, I wouldn't know, I haven't played the others, please don't hurt me), and/or being a criteria to bringing up your vassals/champions in the same event, so you could have to worry about their characters before pairing them together.

That's it for me, thanks for reading !
I have to say, I have thought about this purely from a player's perspective, and given absolutely zero thought to how the AI would (or would not) be able handle such changes.
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