|French gendarmes driving off enemy cavalry|
|The solid mass of landsknechts|
|The landsknechts drive off the French pikes|
The army lists (also available as downloads) seem to make the gendarmes very powerful. During the game my six units of gendarmes were all involved in melees and yet at the end none had suffered any casualties. They had attacked units of pikes and although losing their impetus bonus they nevertheless seemed to prevail with little difficulty. Even if the pikes had a supporting unit of pikes they only rolled the same number of dice as the gendarmes. The main difference was that the morale value of the gendarmes was 7 or 8, whilst the pikes were 4 or 5. Any casualties were deducted from this morale value and then one had to roll equal or lower to pass the test. (a 6 is always a fail). So, if both sides had 2 casualties in the melee the gendarmes would pass on anything but a '6', but, the infantry would need, at best a 3 or less, a 50% chance of failure.
Also, in the morale roll the difference between the number rolled and number required become causalities. Therefore, if a three or less is required and a '6' is rolled then 3 casualties are suffered. So a few bad die rolls (in this case high is 'bad') can be disastrous.
On balance, I think that a few more trials will be necessary before a decision can be made on whether we take up the rules as our default set for the ancient/medieval/renaissance periods.