Stacking/combining Toughness and Armour into one stat/roll

    • If we're going by the rule of cool, the argument could go either way. Arguably boards become uncool if the only thing they're good for is keeping you alive, and make you lose the grinding game. Gamistically, though, the fact that they are the weapon choice that makes you most survivable might be enough to make them relevant.

      The point about spearmen needing to fulfil more conditions to live up to their full potential is true, but I'm not sure it counts for that much. Spearmen need three ranks to get their full number of attacks, and any sensibly sized core infantry block would be bigger than that anyway. There is, though, the point that a board unit of equal size can afford more casualties before its damage output starts to drop.

      As far as I see it, the main advantage swordsmen would have over spearmen is that spearmen are much more dependent on holding a somewhat ordered formation to be able to use their weapons to their full effect. I could imagine that a spear formation would have at least a slight advantage if it remains ordered, while it'd be at a significant disadvantage if the engagement devolves into an actual unordered melee (in the proper, narrow use of the term, not as a synonym to close combat as it tends to be used nowadays). Since the game as it is doesn't include such distinctions, that kind of differentiation isn't possible.
    • Perhaps using spear+shield should come with a -1 initiative penalty to balance out its advantages over sword and shield?

      From what I've seen (which is not much I admit, but I'm giving it a go anyway) a spear has distance working for him. Yet once the gap is closed, the spear+shield needs space to parry and counterattack. Sword and shield suffer from the same inconvenience, althoug only to a minimal extent since their weapon is way more practical up close. In larger formations the spear initially is more dangerous, because of its range and the possibility of fighting in phalanx formation, but I think with a subtle change such as -1 initiative it becomes less of an autoinclude, and still a very valid option, while retaining some level of realism. If the hypothetical fight between two equal units (one with HW+shield and one with spear+shield) would be fought in isolation the sword users can win if the fight drags on. I'm just thinking out loud here, but it doesn't sound THAT terrible in my opinion. :)

      But this is slightly off-topic. Is there perhaps another thread for this kind of discussion? :P