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Rome Strategy Discussion
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Topic Subject: A few questions regarding the Testudo formation.
posted 01 November 2004 16:28 EDT (US)   
1. What are its advantages?
2. What are its disvantages?
3. When is it best used?
Thnx in advance.
Replies:
posted 01 November 2004 17:18 EDT (US)     1 / 3  
1. It shields the legionaries against arrow fire, thrown spears/javelins, and the like.
2. The tightness of the formation means flaming onager boulders massacre the troops, it restricts the cohorts when in hand-to-hand, and it slows down movement and deployment.
3. Best used in sieges when approaching the walls, or when the enemy is trying to wear your infantry down with horse archers or the like.
posted 03 November 2004 09:36 EDT (US)     2 / 3  
but if your fired on by arrows would it be better to be put in loose formation or testudo?
posted 03 November 2004 11:05 EDT (US)     3 / 3  
If it's in a field battle with a great danger of hand-to-hand combat following shortly after the arrow bombardment, loose is best, as your men can reform to close formation easily. Testudo takes a long time to deploy and to get out of, so although it offers the best protection (only the odd arrow will ever get through) it shouldn't be used when enemy infantry or cavalry are near.
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