The Ninja also needed to know these strategies so that he could give advice to his general and see through the enemy’s strategies.
Gankō – Flight of Birds
This is a flexible arrangement of troops that can easily be altered should the need arise. A dense line of archers protects the front and rear, but there are also plenty deployed on the sides in case the enemy changes position. The general is at the back with his staff, but still close enough in the center to allow for smooth communication.
Hoshi – Arrowhead
This formation is intended for a heavy attack. A thin line of arquebusiers leads the vanguard of the Samurai. These thrust into the gaps that the arquebusiers have shot in the enemy lines. This formation is highly mobile, which is why the drummers and flag bearers are positioned around the general’s retainers. The formation is intended for fast attacks, which is why the flanks are only lightly defended by bowmen and spearmen.
Saku – Keyhole
This formation is the best defense against Hoshi. Six ranks of arquebusiers, supported by two ranks of archers, are set up in front of the hole to receive the arrowhead. The form of the Samurai, which gives the formation its name, is very stable against such an attack.
Kaku yoku – Crane Wing
This formation is best for surrounding the enemy. Arquebusiers and archers weaken the opponent’s attack. After that, the enemies meet the formation of Samurai, which is built like a wing.
Koyaku – Cattle Yoke
This formation is best for catching the Cranewing, but especially for catching the Arrowhead. The second and third companies can quickly form a keyhole to effectively combat the arrowhead.
Gyorin – Fish Scale
This formation is used when outnumbered by enemy troops. Mainly this formation is a blunted arrowhead, not all the force is put into the attack, but some is retained for safety.
Engetsu – Crescent
If your troops have their backs to the wall, the general uses this formation. Although the army has not yet been surrounded, it has already taken heavy losses. The battered units are pulled back while the vanguard of the Samurai forms a crescent that can easily be adjusted as the situation demands.
Chōda – Long Line
This formation works best when your troops are being attacked from two different sides. The soldiers can quickly switch in both directions.
But this is only a small selection, there are numerous other formations and variations of those shown. The tiger head is used when you want to use the flight of the birds, your troops but are only half as strong, the lying dragon is a variation of the tiger head when fighting on the hill.