Ogniem i Mieczem - By Fire and Sword

Historyczna Gra Strategiczna - Historical Wargame
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 Tytuł: Janissary formations
Post: pn wrz 23, 2013 11:53 pm 
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Looks likely I will do a 15mm force but my passion is for 6mm. From my limited resources I was under the impression that the Janissaries turned up at the Depots at a specified time to commence the campaign season and essentially chose the weapons they were most effective with, and hence a wide variety of weapons are seen amongst the Janissaries. These seems part of the Janissary ethos of the individual warrior and not 'robotic' fighting (which is why formation fighting was recurrently difficult to impose and attempts at introducing the pike failed). Also I have seen mention of Janissary assault groups in seiges being composed of 5 men (2 with muskets, 1-2 with bow, 1-2 with pole weapons or sword and shield). Most of the images I have seen do indeed however have muskets all grouped together.

Considering the above should Janissaries be a mixed armed formation like the Azabs, or have the option to be musket or hand weapon armed bases, or be as you have represented in your army lists as an all musket armed force.

Thank you in advance of your thoughts and expertise.


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 Tytuł: Re: Janissary formations
Post: wt wrz 24, 2013 1:15 am 
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Cranium27 pisze:
From my limited resources I was under the impression that the Janissaries turned up at the Depots at a specified time to commence the campaign season and essentially chose the weapons they were most effective with, and hence a wide variety of weapons are seen amongst the Janissaries.


That would make almost impossible to use any tactics with janissaries, if soldiers within each ortas would have mixed weapons ;) Since introduction of jannisaries their main task on battlefield was to defend centre of Ottoman army and use their firepower (initially bows, then firearms) to 'soften' enemy than can be then charge by cavalry. Although during siege operations soldiers could use bows instead of muskets, also some mix of hand weapons, during pitched battle they were equipped with muskets. As they were always supported by numerous cavalry and often used field fortification and/or obstacles, there was no need for introducing pikes. Earlier in period - for example in 16th century - jannisaries were really well trained and used well drilled formation. Quoting Mesut Uyar Phd:
The basic mechanism of the Tabur was simple but very difficult to apply. Before the start of the battle war wagons were chained together and cannons were placed within. Several Janissary units armed with heavy arquebuses/muskets were also positioned with the cannoners and the remaining Janissaries - several rows deep - remained within the formation. The Ottoman wings, by outflanking or feigned retreat, would try to force the main body of the enemy army towards this fortress. The Azab screen would retreat immediately after showing brief resistance in order to disorganize enemy attack. Artillery and heavy arquebuses/muskets would fire first and further wear down the enemy and disorganize its assault formations. Then the Janissaries, with light weapons, began firing in volleys by rotating the rank
Günham Börekçi in his article A Contribution to the Military Revolution Debate: The Janissaries Use of Volley Fire during the Long Ottoman-Habsburg War of 1593-1606 and the Problem of Origins [in:] Acta Orientalia Academiae Hungaricae 59, 2006, no 4. states that they were trained in volley fire, which shows high level of training.
In second part of 17th century though (period covered by BFaS rules) their training level was much lower and they were not as good infantry as before. Still, firearms were main weapons so whatever scale You want to use for Your games, I would suggest to keep all janissaries as firearms-equipped only.

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 Tytuł: Re: Janissary formations
Post: wt wrz 24, 2013 11:21 am 
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Thank you for your prompt response. I will base them accordingly now. Might have to sculpt a few more 6mm poses of Janissary with muskets for a bit of variation. Interested in your figures are wearing a 'split' coat, I've so far sculpted mine in just a loose fitting full lenth coat (I've done one wiuth it tucked in at the front, although am aware that this was the norm it is a little more challenging on the sculpting front).

I have also done some 30 Levant sculpts with various weapons. What would be your suggestions on how best to use these in the army lists, I was thinking possibly as Azab proxies?

Cheers

Mike


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 Tytuł: Re: Janissary formations
Post: wt wrz 24, 2013 11:38 am 
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In initial draft of army list we had Levant as well but we decided not to include them in final version. There's not enough reliable information about them, also they didn't have big impact on Ottoman armies. I would say that Azab rules would be the best option here.

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 Tytuł: Re: Janissary formations
Post: pn wrz 30, 2013 7:32 pm 
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Good to see this discussion and learn, thank you!


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