Simulated Battle of Stirling Bridge


Registered Member
Wikipedia - The Battle of Stirling Bridge - Sept. 11, 1297 - Stirling, Scotland

Felt like running a quick (albeit, very rough) mock-up. You can read about the real battle in the link provided above.

Scotland - Andrew de Moray & William Wallace
England - John de Warenne & Hugh de Cressingham
Scotland - 10,000 infantry, 300 cavalry
England - 15,000 – 50,000 infantry, 1000 – 3000 cavalry
(source: Wikipedia)
Simulation (attempting to be proportional):
Andrew de Moray - 301 infantry, 40 cavalry
William Wallace - 301 infantry, 40 cavalry
John de Warenne - 1,186 infantry (60 archers), 160 cavalry
Hugh de Cressingham - 1,186 infantry (60 archers), 160 cavalry
I took control of one of the Scottish armies, and allowed the other three to be handled by the AI.

Initially, the AI lined up the the two Scottish armies on opposite sides of the bridge, quite a distance away; I redeployed my own as close to the bridge as I was able. The English armies were laid out similar to my own, on the opposite side of the river.

The English AI decided not to bother with archers, and rushed the bridge right off the hop (no surprise, but technically historically accurate). I sent my cavalry forward to counter-charge then retreat, with my infantry just behind. Unfortunately for the Scots, I should have sent in the infantry sooner, since I could have met the English halfway across the bridge and held the choke-point longer; the English armies pushed me back off the bridge quite quickly, just by sheer numbers. Being pushed off bridge spread out my forces, meaning my infantry started getting killed off rather swiftly. I tried charging the open English flanks a couple times with cavalry, but it did little to help.

At this point, the Scottish AI finally decided to show up and contribute something by charging into the fight. The charge broke up the armies and killed one of the English commanders. Once a couple English units broke off and decided to retreat, the others soon followed, but not before my own infantry got almost entirely wiped out. :-/

Real results:
Scottish victory
Scotland - "comparatively light" casualties
England - 30% - 40% losses

Simulation results:
Scottish victory
Scotland - 60% losses
England - 76% losses

This is the one guy that survived, out of 301 soldiers in his unit:


And so, history repeats itself, although my own version ended up being a bit more brutal, probably since I was a little too slow in giving my orders at first.

If you were to imagine my army to be that of William Wallace, the movie Braveheart would have ended just after the very first major battle sequence, since every major character would have died holding the bridge. :lol:


For a Free Scotland
Awesome, can you do a simulated Bannockburn?

I think people don't understand how ferocious Highland Scots are- they're extremely fast and resilient- holding a bridge is what they were made for.


Registered Member
I think people don't understand how ferocious Highland Scots are- they're extremely fast and resilient- holding a bridge is what they were made for.
They were also tactically brilliant --> One of the most famous users of pikes and stakes to defeat cavalry (which is what made English armies so powerful).

I should mention that I did this on Medieval II: Total War, an absolutely brilliant PC game. The Custom Battle feature is powerful, but is sadly not quite powerful enough to give a more intricate battle (like Bannockburn) as much accuracy as a reenactment deserves.

What you can do is set a proportional number of men to the actual battle, and split them up in similar units (like pikemen, archers, cavalry...), pick some similar terrain, and see if you can beat the tactical odds as so many brilliant generals of history did. Bannockburn would definitely be some good fun to base a battle on. :nod:

The recent release of Empire: Total War is what has me all over this Medieval kick, all over again. :lol:
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