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The Cantabrian circle is a formation available in Rome: Total War and Medieval II: Total War, as well as their expansions. When activated, horse archers or skirmishers will begin to circle around, allowing continuous fire while only exposing a small portion of the group to direct fire from enemy archers.
This formation can be useful in Rome Total war when engaging with foot archers, because it will effectively reduce the damage done. This formation has a problem however, it slows down the movement of the units so that light cavalry could catch them.
In Medieval II it is more than useful when targeting static units like heavy cavalry and infantry.
This formation has been used in the historical battle of Carrhae(Rome: Total War) just to increase the fire rate of the units.