The fatigue level of a combat unit is a measure of both its physical and mental condition, physically how tired or rested a unit is, and mentally how relaxed or stressed the unit is. For example, the action of doubling may physically fatigue a unit, whilst engaging in a prolonged firefight may incur mental fatigue due to the increased stress of the unit being in the heat of action. Each of the following will incur some level of fatigue upon a combat unit:
Some tasks will incur more fatigue than others, for example doubling will incur more fatigue than forming column from line. Firing at 100% incurs more fatigue than firing at 50%. Firing skirmish companies will not incur fatigue on the parent unit. Normal movement does not incur fatigue. A rested unit is one with 100% fatigue level, and exhausted unit is one with 0% fatigue
Fatigue levels are recovered simply by not performing or engaging in any form of action other than conducting normal movement. Simply don't change formation or charge, don't fire and don't engage in combat. An artillery unit will recover fatigue faster if limbered, as a deployed battery is potentially under more stress and therefore less relaxed and subsequently less likely to recover fatigue at the same rate as a battery that has limbered and withdrawn from the heat of action.
Morale levels, like fatigue, can go up or down depending on the circumstances relating to the combat unit. Any morale checks that might be taken during the course of the game are calculated from the morale level of the unit at that moment, and not the base morale level with which the unit entered the battle. Many factors can affect morale such as losses, fatigue, order, experience, training, the presence of a general officer, the comparative morale of an opponent during a charge, the formation of the unit or its immediate opponent and many others.
Morale checks are performed automatically by the system at each of the following situations:
The end of turn phase morale check will be made depending on the units current losses, current morale level, current fatigue level and current state of disorder or order.
The morale of a unit can be improved at two occasions, and is achieved by the direct attachment of a general officer figure to the required combat unit. The two occasions are as follows:
During the rally phase any friendly officer can attempt to rally a unit currently in poor morale [the system will determine which units require to be rallied]. Normally only units under compulsory movement restrictions, such as, no advance, halt, retire or rout moves [which includes units that may have engaged in combat or broken during an attempt to deliver defensive fire against an attacking unit] are required to rally. The leadership qualities of the officer will directly affect the success or failure of rally attempt. A lightly wounded officer will inspire the men better than a non-blooded officer, and the unit's direct commanding officer will have more value than an unknown or lower ranked officer. Sometimes multiple officers may attempt to rally a unit. Any officer can attempt to rally a specific unit at this time. The higher in the chain the command the better the potential impact upon the units morale. Officers can only successfully rally one unit during the rally phase, unsuccessful officers can be moved to other units to attempt to rally them during the same phase. Successful officers should however be left attached to the rallied combat unit.
During the end of turn phase units that need to rally and whose direct commanding officer is attached may attempt to rally. Only the direct commanding officer can attempt to rally a specific unit at this time, and to do so the officer must be currently attached to the unit.
It should be obvious that the inclusion of officers in an order of battle is very important, and that the maintenance of the correct chain of command to ensure that the correct officers are available to restore order to their own commands is equally as important.
General officers can be moved at two occasions during the course of a game turn.
All officers may be moved during the movement phase, but any officer that is currently attached to a combat unit must remain attached to the unit and will remain so throughout the fire and combat phases of the game turn. An unattached officer may be moved from one position to another, or may be moved into attachment with a combat unit to assist in defensive fire or combat. However, an officer can not be moved to a unit to support an attempt to charge, as the charge sequence is completed prior to any officer movement
During the rally phase all officers can be again moved as required to attach or break contact with combat units. This is also an appropriate time to move officers to units that may wish to charge in the movement phase of the next turn It is also an important time to ensure that the correct officers are with the appropriate combat units that may require to be rallied during the end of turn phase.
Infantry units that have an attached skirmish company may elect to fire skirmishers only during the fire phase. This fire will not incur fatigue on the parent unit and is assumed to be made at effective musketry range by a single company which is deployed ahead of the parent unit in loose skirmishing formation. The parent unit in this case may be in any regular close order formation, including line and column, but excluding square. Depending on nationality and troop type some units may also deploy a larger portion of their strength into open order. This is essentially a heavy skirmish screen composed of multiple companies deployed in tight skirmish formation [different to that of a single skirmish company] with a minimum of one company maintaining close order as supports to the rear of the advanced open line.
To engage in skirmish fire the measurement is taken from parent unit to parent unit, and each unit must be within 325 paces of one another. When two opposing units have skirmish capability, their fire potential will be reduced, this due to the interaction of the skirmish screens ahead of each parent unit. When a unit is deployed in open order the measurement is taken from the firing unit to the target unit, units armed with muskets must be within 200 paces, and units armed with rifles must be within 300 paces. Units deployed in open order will not have independent skirmish company fire available during the fire phase, as it is assumed that the skirmish company is part of the open line.