On the occasion of the 586th anniversary of the battle of Agincourt, October 25, 1415, the ENOTH Design Team presents: 'Agincourt 1415' (a single, FF).
Not an easy task, especially after the superb built-in 'Agincourt' in the 'Battles of the Conquerors' AoK TC campaign. Here we are trying to concentrate on the battle itself, on its tactical aspect, to show that for the English it was equally easy to win or to loose it, depending on what actions did they and their adversaries take. The major problem was to create an AI making French do what they actually did in 1415 - standard AI or Immobile Units are too smart to repeat their mistakes, they just come, see and win. The answer was our special Agincourt AI - it does nothing but leads soldiers into battle wherever an enemy is sighted, regardless of all strategic considerations. Another problem was to make fields of mud, not just visual, but affecting enemy movements. This was done by triggers.
Modern views on the battle and its historical importance are contradictory. Some say, it's all Shakespeare's fault that we still remember the name of Agincourt. The English had no choice but to win it. They were professional soldiers, they had good commanders, their king was with them, they had fought many battles before, etc. French commanders were incompetent, their army - just an ironclad mob, they were scared of the English, accustomed to loose every time they fought them.
On the other hand, the English were worn out by forced marches, hungry, many of them ill, king Henry wasn't really so sure of his victory, otherwise he wouldn't have sued for a truce on the eve of the battle. The numerical superiority of the French, the strength of their armored infantry and knights also did count.
There may be some truth in most of these statements, but the incompetence of the French commanders has been exaggerated. They were not stupid at all, their initial plan to starve the English into surrender or reduce their numbers with artillery fire was quite good. The fault was with the whole military system of the French. It was feudal, which means that no supreme commander had any real control over his 'subordinates' - great nobles full of their own strategic ideas, chivalry code, etc. The only thing they feared was not the English, but to be left behind, not to be among the first to clash with the enemy. As soon as one of them, forgetting his commander's orders, rode forward to attack the English, all discipline was gone, and the rest followed.
Another important factor was the presence of Marshal Jean Bouciquaut among the French. This man was doomed to loose all the battles he took part in. We cannot say now, if he was really a good or a bad general, for he was an extremely unlucky general. Henry has made a grave mistake taking him prisoner instead of sending him back to king Charles - that would have meant the total collapse of France and a quick end of the war.
This scenario contains some minor deviations from historical accuracy. Not all the French nobles mentioned have been killed in the battle - some, like Bouciquaut, were captured. Some personages in the English army come straight from Shakespeare's 'Henry V'.
Take command of the French in Agincourt 1415 (Play for France)
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“Agincourt 1415” is a campaign based around a famous battle that took place during the hundred years war between the French and the English. I thought I would re-visit this campaign recently as I felt I hadn’t given it a chance before.
Playability: This campaign’s playability is ok. There are not too many things to do, which are not fighting related. The author tries to use different things to make it more interesting, which helps. Making use of the different attacks by columns was an original idea and the use of sound and Ai in this campaign was truly great. If you like fixed force scenarios and are thinking of ways to keep the player interested this is definitely recommended.
Balance: The balance in Agincourt 1415 is hard no matter what difficulty you play it on. I feel the author has deliberately made it hard and the use of muddy fields in the trigger system and Ai is to be commended and offers a great tactical elements which has a massive effect on your outcome. The balance is good overall and after several tries you’ll realise how you are meant to manage your troops.
Creativity: The creativity shown here is superb! Featuring muddy areas, which actually effects game-play! Also it features an interesting event happens after gaining a relic from the French monastery to briefly take you away from the fighting. The different columns of French attacking was a great feature and made it feel more like the “you are here” experience than usual.
Map Design: The map design is good. The author has spent time to make the map and landscape look beautiful. The author is adept at using the Age of Kings scenario editor and has created a map, which almost rivals the Ai and trigger system the author has created.
Story/Instructions: The story was good and there is a great history, instructions and hints section’s in this campaign. The story tells of what has happened to date and what you in this campaign are trying to accomplish. Supported by an excellent bitmap the story is strong and plays an important part in this campaign.
Overall: This campaign is probably my favourite out of all ENOTH’s work so far. This is because there is a lot of originality and beating it can take some time and effort.
"Agincourt 1415" is an active, exciting game. Henry V's English Army - controlled by the player - must either rely on the good micromanagement of soldiers or the preparing of a strong defense in order to win. The player is also up against an AI, not triggers, meaning that the French Army may attack from different angles with different amounts of troops each game. Unfortunately, the victory condition forcing the player to hunt down and kill every unit in the French Army and its Reserve - including wandering scouts - increases the urge to use cheats to win faster or completely stop playing. Otherwise, when playing "Agincourt 1415" I am peeled to my seat for the half hour to forty-five minutes of gameplay.
With strong defensive tactics, it is possible to beat the French with a kill ratio of twenty-five to one in your favor. However, if one rushes on to the field of Agincourt having Longbowmen shoot at everything in sight, the French Army may attack before any defense is prepared. Having an English Archer-heavy army versus French melee unit-heavy army is also a challenge: the player needs to use his comparatively small force of Champions, Halberdiers, Light Cavalry, and various heroes well in order to protect his devastating Longbowmen.
Creativity is good at replicating - or adding features to - the Battle of Agincourt. The high point is the terrain as, with the help of triggers, the French Army gets staggered when walking in mud.
Map Design: 4
The Map Design is above average in creating the muddy fields seen during 1415 in France. Not only that, but the map can be fully explored, lacking cliffs or clumps of trees to keep the player confined. Terrain is also clever : harmless looking eyecandy sometimes doubles as a natural wall. However, the map can be disappointing, with excessive amounts of fish and bamboo in some locations.
The story is excellent - although exaggerating the losses of the French Nobility in the Battle of Agincourt and a scene where the player seemingly crosses the River Somme after it. The Battle is not accurate up-to-the-detail, with elements of the French attacking out of order. This does not particularly matter however, considering the fact that certain English Nobles can experience a different fate in the battle, there is a slight "what if?" feeling in the scenario. A minor problem is the lack of clarification that the player must destroy the larger pavilions to receive food. All these details are far to minor to cause the player to lose or keep this detail from a perfect rating.
Additional Comments: "Agincourt 1415" is possibly one of the best "Hundred Year's War" scenarios in the Blacksmith, in my humble opinion.