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Effective Cavalry Tactics for GBACW


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How to use Cavalry effectively in GBACW can be difficult. Realize that the right answer can depend on which GBACW game you are playing!

Neil Wakefield writes:

"If you stack dismounted cavalry under an infantry unit the cavalry are protected from losses. (They and only need to test their poor, dismounted morale if the infantry routs or is eliminated.)"

Russ Gifford writes:

"I am still trying to use cavalry as effectively as I know it can be used in GBACW. Too often it seems like it gets treated as a way to bring up the troops quickly, then they dismount and fight as infantry, which they do badly (except in Pea Ridge, where it mimics the way the troopers fought, according to designer Eric Lee Smith.)

Russ Gifford says:

"Cavalry in the bigger games, like TSS 2nd, can be very good at disrupting things behind enemy lines. The troopers and their six-hex ZOC allows them to cut roads, interdict supply and in some important cases, mess with command control. Luckily for the Union, most of the CSA cavalry doesn't come on until near nightfall of the first day. Realize, though, that these units can disappear in a heartbeat when the enemy closes with them. Strike and run is the order of the day!"

Russ Gifford writes:

"Cavalry in Corinth: it is vital for the CSA to hold cavalry off board in the initial entry for their troops. There they can be used to sweep up any of their routing troops that might be forced off the board when entering in the clear terrain. (I learned this one the hard way! Thanks, Nate!)"

Russ Gifford adds:

"The totally independent nature of cavalry in Corinth and the victory conditions of getting into town as the attacker makes the cavalry a lot more dangerous than in many games. If the Rebel can find a seam and sneak past the defenders, the road net will allow them to cause true havoc in the backfield for the Union! The roads also give the Union an advantage normally, since they can quickly transfer troops from one front to another as needed in Corinth  (once they wake up!) So getting the CSA's cavalry through to interdict these roads can tie them up and harass the defenders. They can also nab a battery or two if the defenders aren't careful, and those are REALLY a bonus. The cavalry is a real boon for the USA player, since they are about all he has in the early turns to plug the holes, it seems. And they have the movement factors to make a difference."

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