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To fight an enemy with a bow or crossbow is simple, although not always easy.

A guard with a crossbow must crank his weapon after each shot. If there is only one such enemy, seek cover and give him cause to waste his shot, and then close upon him before he may fire again. If there are many, close to their flank so you face one guard directly, using him as a second shield, and no other guard has a clean shot at your unprotected back. Do not move to the middle of their ranks and rely upon them hesitating to risk hitting one another.

A soldier with a shortbow is a little more dangerous. Attack him as you would an enemy with a crossbow, but accept that he will likely fire again. Approach with your shield up, even if you must sacrifice speed. Few soldiers are true masters of the bow; those who do not fumble their draw in fear will fire a shot quickly, so it is more likely to glance off your armor or shield than punch through.

Few soldiers have the skill or strength to make good use of the longbow. Respect those who do. Against such an enemy, cover is the only defense. Move quickly across his field of vision, forcing him to compensate for your movement. Do not charge directly unless your allies can distract him. A fully drawn longbow can drive an arrow through a chevalier's plate at a hundred yards.

A fight between an archer and a chevalier is a test of cunning versus patience. We are too often patient—heavily armored as we are—and faced with lightly armored foes who would harass us. While archers frustrate me as they do most chevaliers, it is good that we fight them, so we remember how to be cunning, how to break an opponent's patience.

—An excerpt from A Meditation upon the Use of Blades, by Swordmaster Massache de Jean-mien, required reading at the Academie des Chevaliers

Research Benefits

Damage against humanoids increased

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