Sunday, December 16, 2018

Troop Types in Rebels and Patriots

Mexican Line Infantry storming a Hacienda

As I guess you might want to start building your forces for the release of Rebels and Patriots I thought it would be a good ideea to talk a little bit about the Troop Types we use in the rules.

As in the other rules of the rampant family we use generic troop types to represent the different units you can field in a game. They are indeed generic and you might have to think an extra second about how to best depict and represent the specific troops fielded in the conflict you are building a force for.

Most of the minis in the pictures are from my Mexican-American war 1848 forces that i startedup as my playtest project for Rebels and Patriots. The minis are Perry ACW and Napoleonic and Victrix Napoleonic plastic that I converted in to Mexicans and Americans. The Natives are from Galloping Major, now on to the troop types.

First we have the basic footsloggers that make up most forces during the major part of the period coverd by the rules, The Line Infantry, they are most often fielded in units of 12 miniatures and they have access to the longest list of Unit upgrades of all Troop types in the game, so it will be possible for you to tailor them in to the perfect unit for your force.

American Line Infantry

We have also included two "specialist Line Infantry" Troop types, The Light Infantry and the Shock Infantry, they are both specialisations of the Line Infantry that we feelt needed their own Troop type to best represent their special training and function. They are both normaly fielded in units of 12 miniatures and both have several Special rules that make them stand out in their own way and better represent their special tasks during a battle, but it come with a cost.

Mexican Light Infantry

Mexican Grenadiers as Shock Infantry

Skirmishers have alway had a place on the Horce and Muscet battlefield so also in the Rebels and Patriots rules. The Troop type Skirmishers can represent either trained regulars that are sent out as a picket/skirmish line those main task are to protect the Line Infantry or as Irregular troops that harass regular troops taking potshots from cover, either way are they fielded in units of 6 miniatures.

American Riflemens as Skirmishers

The last of the true Infantry Troop types are the Natives, they fight in irregular loose-order warbands that mainly focusing on hit and run tacktics untill the enemy are withered down and then move in for the final assault. If you want your natives to hide in the forest taking well aimed shots you might consider fielding them as Skirmishers instead. Natives are most often fielded in units of 12 miniatures.

Native American Warband as Natives
Even if the rules are focusing on small scale action there Artillery probably didnt have any greater impact we have included the Artillery Troop type in the rules, the Troop type are subdivided in to Light, Medium and Heavy artillery and are normaly fielded as 1 gun + 4 crew

Mexican Artillery

The last Troop types are the Cavalry, due to the special terrain prerequisites in North America with dence forests etc. Cavalry didnt have the same impact on the warfare as in Europe for example so most cavalry are represented by the Light Cavalry Troop type, that are fielded in units of 6 miniatures.

Mexican Lancers as Light Cavalry

Sins the focus of the rules also include Mexico we decided to also include the Shock Cavalry Troop type to better represent Light Cavalry grouped together and used in the battlefield role of European Heavy Cavlry as Shock Cavaly that are normaly fielded in units of 12 miniature! In short the same Light Cavalry minis can be fielded either as Light Cavalry or as Shock Cavalry all depending on how you as a commander want to ues them during the battle.

Mexican Cuirassiers fielded as Shock Cavalry

If you for example are looking for the iconic American Mounted Riflemen you will find him as a Unit Uppgrade in the Skirmish Troop type, already had a buch of question what Troop type they would be represented by.

I hope my short introduction to the different troop type can help you out starting to draft your Rebels and Patriots forces.

Mexican and American forces in battle. About double size of a normal game, i.e. 48 points on each side.


  1. Wonderful figures and pictures!

  2. Very cool, can you post photos of your Mex-American War figs and name the ranges you got them from?

  3. And disregard my last comment, you explained were you got them from already. :P

  4. Nice looking pictures and the rules look interesting!


  5. Looking forward to it! Do you feel that Rebels and Patriots can be used to represent Napoleonic skirmishes as well?

  6. That should not be a problem at all, work fine to use the rules outside America. I use them for Napoleonocs, Finnish war 1808-09 between Sweden and Russia.

    1. Just what I wanted to hear! I've been assembling the new Perry Swedes and wanted something along the lines of Pikeman's Lament.

  7. I'm looking forward to getting these rules. I'm preparing US and Mexican figures in 15mm so the recent posts here have been very helpful. I think the rules will work for the Italian War of Re-unification too.

  8. Great models and pictures. Really looking forward to this. It’s going to be very hard to stop myself from starting new projects.

  9. Hi,
    Question for you - and one that has arisen on some forums. You mention that some of your specialized infantry have traits "that come at a cost".
    So I note that skirmishers and Shock Infantry both have a reduced range of only 12". I imagine there were "game balance" reasons for this decision, but can you discuss the thought process for taking this route compared to, say, reducing the fire effectiveness at normal 18" range. This is particularly an issue for skirmishers who sometimes have GREATER ranges than volley troops in some rules.
    Thanks for your time on this.

  10. Hi
    Good questions but we usuly dont discuss way we decided to go a sertain way as the rules are already printed and the dicissions made are already done, thenI can understand that not all games think they was the "right" decissions, but not much I can do about it.

    Anyway the Skirmishers are in design in line with simmilar troop types in other rampant games, Bidowers for example, Skirmishers thats main role on the battle field are to screen more valuable troops. If they got to long ramge they would onöly sit back taking potshots on the enemy, now they are forces to move closer to the enemy and risk to be hit by a Volley, charge etc. If you really want them to act as snipers you have to pay @4 prs extra to make them Sharpshoters.

    Regarding the Shock infantry There was 2issues I had, firts the point cost, wanted them to cost 6 points but with range 18" they would have been @17 points the other issue was that during playtest people used them as Line Infantry and most often stayed at long range and shoot it out, they never used them as Shock Infantry, so to represent the better drilled/Elite corp de esprit troops that would be included in the trooptype I decided to represent this by give them 12" rang so they had to move in to Volley range and get the best effect out of their training etc. and also increase the chanse for them to charge, but be sure to screen them with skirmishers during there advance...

    There are at least 2 other troop types that have got "odd" rules just to make the players use them more in line with my wiev of how they acted on the battle field and that is the natives and Light Cavalry that arn´t alowed to use the Fire Action, as I wanted them to be used more mobile and the Fire action are contraproductive (they would stop and shoot it out to often) if you want a fluid battle when using Natives and Light Cavalry.

    So there you have some of my thoughts, sorry for the poor english but I hope I explained well enought.

    If you have more questions please post them in the Rebels and patriots facebook group:

    Best regards Michael

  11. Thank you, Michael, for that thoughtful and lengthy reply. I am terribly interested in rule mechanics and the decisions behind them - they are what make the games, after all. So, yes, I thought the shorter range for Shock troops would be to "force" them into contact. These are pretty short games, after all, and you do have the option of changing troops every game - just keeping your leader the same.
    Thanks again and all the best.
    - Walt/ North Shore Gamers