Covenants: Heavy Cavalry and Cavalry

Hey all,

:frowning:

So, crossbowmen and veterans got treatment in terms of their per-man expenses, allowing you to select as many as the covenant could conceivably afford, while not specifically saying how many men would be included by virtue of taking the boon.

Heavy Cavalry and Cavalry got no such treatment. One refers to a "banner" of knights, and the other a "small number" of horsemen. Exactly how many soldiers is one buying with this boon? 5, 10, 20? And why are these different than the other two? The military camp template even mentions giving the Heavy Cavalry boon twice. Why? What is the point of doubling 'X' when it apparently has whatever value you want?

If these are meant to be rough guidelines, then they should have the same treatment as the crossbowmen and veterans so they can be budgeted for, otherwise they should list how many troops the covenant has access to.

:confused:

Anyone have any insights or house rules done up for this?

Thanks,
Chris

Sorry, no. It looks like Covenants is short on a lot of details. :frowning:

In case it helps, in Osprey's Warrior series we have a bopok by Christopher GRAVETT, "English medieval Knight, 1200-1300" it re4ads that banners were comprised of 12-15 horsemen.

The captains of a paid squadron were usually of rank.
Banerets had 12-15 followers and were usually tennants in chief, but with small feudal obligations
Most of them used a substitute, paying for him. The price was as follows. Knights and mounted squires appear to habve a similar status on payrolls. In the welsh wars, squires riding armoured horses were paid 1 shilling per day. If they rode unarnmoured horses, they were paid 6d or 8d. The records show that under Edward I about one third of the cavalry were knights, the rest being squires, sergeants and other men-at-arms. This proportion of knights kept decreasing over time.

2 sergeants equated a knight in terms of service without pay (40 days) and to substitute him if he was being replaced to discharge the feudal obligations

Hope that helps. if you need more infor I will try to extrapolate, but for exact numbers I only have this book. I have a biography of Marshall that also contains some interesting financial costs et al, but the shillings abouve should be enough to recalculate costs :slight_smile:

EDIT: I just read the boon. I think that it basically means that you have to pay for tyhe equipment, even if the members of those forces are not paid directly (That is BS IMO, but hey). So, you pay the upkeep cost of the steeds and expensive (otr very exopensive) arms ansd armour for all the members of the cavalry unit. The multipliers are given in the chapter about finances.

Cheers,

Xavi

Yes, this is true.

No they don't, because the number of knights you can muster is of great uimportance ot your place in the feudal heirarchy.

I don't know, because I don't know where your covenant is. The number of knights that is "a small number" or "a banner" varies by place across Europe, and I couldn't give you a table of corresponsences to say how valuable a heavy cavalryman is in France as compared to Bulgaria.

Because, as noted in the chapter, cavalry are raiding forces, designed to dominate and rule surrounding terrotory, not garrisoning forces, designed to protect a single place. If you have a lance or banner of cavalry you are telling your neighbours that you intend to go to war with them. There is no other point in having cavalry that to threaten your neighbours with: that's what its for. Now some of that is defensive "raid me and I'll send my boys around" threatening...but if you have these guys, you are saying you have the capacity and desire to fight noblemen for land.

[/color-red]

Because it means you have twice as much X as a reasonably designed covenant in your saga would usually have. In this case, it has a home guard the size of a usual force for the area, and an expeditionary force of equal size.

They can't, because I can't know if you are in Sweden or Turkey, or if you are playing a high-fantasy game or a low-fantasy one. I'm sorry, but in the Covenants rules you really do need to get together with your players and decide some things for yourselves. We did this so as to not lock you into a certain fantasy/simulationism level.

If you want to call my work bullshit on a board I'm reading, I'd really prefer you explained yourself more fully. I'm perfectly willing to address and specific criticism you have, but just calling my work shit is not, IMO, a very useful way to begin a discussion.

So, you pay the upkeep cost of the steeds and expensive (otr very
exopensive) arms ansd armour for all the members of the cavalry unit.
The multipliers are given in the chapter about finances.

Yep. Look, this isn't "Civilisation". You don't buy yourself horsemen the way you do infantry and crossbowmen. That's not their social role in the Middle Ages. Horses are -extremely- expensive in terms of housing and feeding, and the way of getting around that isn't to pay the guys who own the horse a big wage and then have them buy their own food and supplies, like you do with mercenary crossbowmen. If you want cavalry, you need to pay with Boons and Hooks, or get them with a story.

It's a pity the book doesn't say so. A note like [color=blue]"A banner of knights is a significant force, the size and armaments thereof should be tailored to suit your saga. For comparison, a banner of English knights in a historically accurate saga might be 12-15 horsemen. In a high-fantasy saga of epic wars, a banner of knights might include a thousand men astride their pegasi." would go a long way towards explaining the virtue. As it is, it's underspecified.
I agree with your reasoning completely. It's just that it should have been written in the book, instead of in this board.

1 Like

It is funny how much people jumps around here. This starts to look like the berklist :wink: hehe

No, I am not calling your work bullshit. I really liked covenants, even if there is some stuff I do not like in the book. But there is stuff I do not like in my own designs for a saga, so no biggie here :slight_smile: You simply can’t have a perfect book for everybody and I am perfectly fine with that :smiley:

The thing I called “BS” for is that the cavalrymen are not paid at all. They simply Hng around. You pay for their equipment, but that is all. I agree that knights usually are not paid in money, but they are paid somehow. Maybe with feasts and nice (expensive) gifts, but you need to pay for them in order to keep your banner. Unhappy knights usually do not fight for you :slight_smile:

Sergeants OTOH are paid in money AFAIK. They are simply mounted warriors, and they expect a wage to do their job. The poor noblemen (the knights/banners) in your force might work for non-pecuniary wages, but the sergeants want to see silver in their pockets.

Hence, my comment that I think that you should pay for the mounted dudes. You pay the sergeants with money, and the knights with non-pecuniary wages (but that are still a huge cost for you in monetary terms).

All in all, this was already explained above if you read my quoted text. I showed wages for sergeants there, so it is quite easy to extrapolate that they were paid. :slight_smile: Maybve not in money, but they imply a heavy cost for you none the less and you are paying it in therms of money to simplify the financial part of the covenant

EDIT: I agree with Yair about the explanation.

Cheers,

Xavi

[color=brown]The thing I called “BS” for is that the cavalrymen are not paid at all. They simply Hng around. You pay for their equipment, but that is all. I agree that knights usually are not paid in money, but they are paid somehow. Maybe with feasts and nice (expensive) gifts, but you need to pay for them in order to keep your banner. Unhappy knights usually do not fight for you

OK, now I see what you mean.

Yes, that's a good point. Bascially the money for all of theat is implied in the hook, although I can see that's not all that clear.

[color=green]It's a pity the book doesn't say so. A note like "A banner of knights is a significant force, the size and armaments thereof should be tailored to suit your saga. For comparison, a banner of English knights in a historically accurate saga might be 12-15 horsemen. In a high-fantasy saga of epic wars, a banner of knights might include a thousand men astride their pegasi." would go a long way towards explaining the virtue. As it is, it's underspecified.

Yes, I can see that...I thought a banner was going to be defined later and it wasn't. Our bad...none of the playtesters caught it weither, but playtesting has now been ramped up and turbo powered...so these sorts of things will be scarcer in future books.

[color=green]I agree with your reasoning completely. It's just that it should have been written in the book, instead of in this board.

Suggest it as an erratum then. Atlas often incorporates its errata into the second edition of books.

Timothy,

Thanks for your insights on the boon, that was helpful. I actually have a farily strong background in medieval military history, but "rules" regarding such things can be tricky. I was essentially trying to figure out how to do cost estimates for a "small force" and ran into a bit of a disconnect between the boon and the expenses section where it became a challenge to understand the linking.

And while I may have some understanding of the history of certain regions, I would have no clue what was intended as appropriate in others. We are at the kickoff point for our saga, and I am trying to be prepared for whatever my group decides to do in terms of building the covenant, and this bit threw me off.

Thanks again,
Chris