Rank #18810 on CommentsLevel 217 Comments: Comedic Genius
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#22 - thechosentroll (03/25/2016) [-]
Except it wasn't. Believe it or not, military strategy has been a thing since the days when a stick with a sharp rock tied to one end was considered the pinnacle of weapons technology.
People rarely just went apeshit and started shooting arrows like a machinegun at the enemy, because:
a) They'd run out of ammo pretty fucking quickly and without ammo, archers are pretty much useless.
b) Volleys have been a thing since fucking forever.
Excluding stuff like horse archers and random skirmishers popping out of bushes, who can't fire a proper volley, most soldiers would be ordered to fire in a volley. As in, they'd all fire at the same time, so the arrows cover the enemy like a blanket of death. Not only was it pretty hard to dodge (arrows aren't THAT fast, if you see it coming, you can step to the side and dodge it. Tough luck dodging 50 at the same time), but it was also fucking terrifying. Think of the scene in 300 where the arrows literally block out the sun. That shit could easily rout a bunch of unprepared enemy soldiers, which is often even better than killing them, because the moment one group starts running away, the guys next to them go "Oh, fuck. Why are they running away? Are we losing? Shit, son. I'm out of here." and follow, which can lead to the whole army just running away.
So, no, ancient archers weren't human machine guns, they usually fired much slower and in volleys. Also, over time they started using bigger and bigger bows, which were slower to fire anyway. Though it doesn't really make a difference when you're firing volleys.
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