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Old 03-05-2016, 10:01 AM   #18
jason taylor
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Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Portland, Oregon
Default Re: Walking around with drawn bow

Originally Posted by Polydamas View Post
A fourteenth-century French authority recommended using a light bow for hunting so that one could keep it partially drawn while waiting for the game. In GURPS terms, a bow ST less than your effective ST should give a bonus to Fast Draw, and a greater one should give a penalty.

What you describe is musketry tactics. There is no published research in a Western European language on how large groups of archers fought, and no readily-available source describing how they coordinated their actions. The choreographers for films like Gladiator just copy musketry drill because it looks cool.
Volley fire though tends to be applicable to many missile weapons. Oddly enough it would be less applicable in a forest fight, although now that I think about it, fire arrows would be. However one difference between archery and musketry is there is less direct and more indirect fire in the former, so archers can have thicker ranking.

There was a way to choreograph it among English longbows. If I remember, Keegan said in the Face of Battle that there were under-officers among the archers and I think they went all the way to the king in chain of command from a sergeant equiv. The arrangement isn't recorded much because few of the nobility paid attention to it at the time.
"The navy could probably win a war without coffee but would prefer not to try"-Samuel Eliot Morrison
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