In the AAR I refer to Closed Order, Open Order, and Skirmish Order. Because those terms so many different things to different people (many contend that true "skirmish order" did not exist in the AWI), I have decide to use Close Order (CO), Loose Order (LO), and Open Order (OO).
Here are the basing recommendations:
|Unit Type||Order||Base Depth||Figures|
Close Order (CO): This represents the early war formations of standing shoulder-to-shoulder, usually three ranks deep. The Hessians infantry (save a few specialty units) will fight in this order throughout the war. The unit gets a benefit in standing off cavalry and morale, but suffers in movement speed and musket range. The lower movement range is justified by the need to dress the line more frequently and so on. A discussion of musket ranges will follow.
Loose Order (LO): This order represents fighting in two ranks with a full arm's distance between each file. The Patriots and British fought mostly in this order. It is what is referred to in the phrase "loose files and American scramble". This order gives the infantry a better movement rate, less penalty from terrain and a slightly longer musket range.
Open Order (OO): Finally we have the AWI equivalent of skirmish order, which are the files spread much farther out. This order gives the best movement rate, no real penalty on terrain, and the best range with a musket.
UPDATE: All references to "Patriot Rifle" are now "American Rifle" to reflect that Loyalist militia can also be armed with the same rifle.