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About orders / messages.

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Post  milouz Tue Aug 18, 2009 10:42 am

Hello,

The concept of "order" or "message" sent to the units is not very clear for me. I would like to know what kind of order should be used and what are these "units" precisely. I'm a bit uncertain about :
- the granularity : should the order be given to every corps, divisions, regiments, battalions ? Let's assume 2 ennemy infantery divisions are in sight each other. Do I have to give precise order to every battalions of my division with precise maneuver or do I give only a global order for all my division (such as fight and pursue, repulse, keep position...).
- the exact way the write some orders. In a figurines rule I praticed a long time ago, there were only 3 differents orders given to each battalion : attack, keep a position, move. Is it the same here ? Who decide the formation then ?

milouz

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Post  hammurabi70 Tue Aug 18, 2009 12:56 pm

milouz wrote:Hello,

The concept of "order" or "message" sent to the units is not very clear for me. I would like to know what kind of order should be used and what are these "units" precisely. I'm a bit uncertain about :
- the granularity : should the order be given to every corps, divisions, regiments, battalions ? Let's assume 2 ennemy infantery divisions are in sight each other. Do I have to give precise order to every battalions of my division with precise maneuver or do I give only a global order for all my division (such as fight and pursue, repulse, keep position...).
- the exact way the write some orders. In a figurines rule I praticed a long time ago, there were only 3 differents orders given to each battalion : attack, keep a position, move. Is it the same here ? Who decide the formation then ?

In theory an order is from one commander to another and should follow that format. In face-to-face it often devolves into a commander telling an umpire what he wants to do as a quicker way to do things to keep the momentum of the game going. In practice you will need to give some fairly detailed conception of what is intended. However, tehre is a key question to be answered: is it a question of an order from one (senior) player to another (junior) commander being run by a player or from the player to the unit to be interpreted by the umpire. Usually it will be the latter in which case you need to give instructions such that the umpire can understand what your intentions are. Evidently formal military is helpful but as experience shows in Kriegsspiel it has a certain style peculiar to the activity and the whims of each player.

If you give an umpire precise instructions for each small unit it is clearer what is intended BUT then limits the ability of the umpire to act as an intermediary and think what a reasonable subordinate will do. A difficult balance but we normally use minimalist orders as they are quicker to write and give the umpire more scope for meshing together the expanding narrative of the battle.
hammurabi70
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Post  James Sterrett Tue Aug 18, 2009 9:46 pm

"Normally", a commander will issue orders one level down, and keep an eye on units two levels down.

In that standard construct, as a division commander, you issue orders to brigades and watch the operations of battalions.

Give orders to groups of forces that are supposed to perform a given task, and make sure the order clearly explains the task, and the purpose of the task.

Example:

Second and Third battalions, attack and hold Hill 456 in order to protect the northern flank of our advance.

Who: Second and Third battalions

Task: attack and hold Hill 456

Purpose: protect the northern flank of our advance

This approach should give your human subordinate, or an umpire, what they need to work with.

If you need coordinating instructions, then by all means include them -- "start your attack at 10:00AM", "keep your left flank tied into 2nd division's right flank", or whatever else.

Expanding on Hammurabi's preference for terse orders (a preference I share): In Kriegsspiel and in real life, orders have a tension between specificity and flexibility. More specific is less flexible. In Kriegsspiel (and in real life) too specific is often too inflexible and cannot keep up with events.... Orders with a clear task & purpose work well! Very Happy

James Sterrett

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Post  milouz Wed Aug 19, 2009 8:29 am

Hi,
thanks a lot for your answers. It's clear now Smile

Arnauld

milouz

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