Every province that you control will have standing defense orders to be used in case of an enemy attack. A standing order remains in effect from turn to turn until you change it. Whenever you conquer a new province you will be given an easy means to issue a complete set of defense orders for it, which you may tailor for your troops and strategic goals.
Optional standing defense orders for a province are:
You may issue some, none, or any combination of the above as standing orders for the defense of a province. No orders dispatching patrols are necessary as one half of the troops in each provincial army are automatically on patrol each turn. Also, if you attempt an ambush, one half of the troops in the provincial army will carry out that order.
Mandatory standing defense orders for each province are:
You must select one type of terrain as the preferred terrain for the defense
of a province. In the event of an attack, your forces will attempt to
maneuver to a battle field in terrain of the type called for in their standing
orders. Troops defending a province will attempt to engage the enemy in a
battle of the type called for in their standing orders. You may make a battle
selection of either OPEN FIELD, SET PIECE, or COMMANDER'S DISCRETION. The
Commander's Discretion order leaves battle selection up to the character
commanding your forces at the scene. It allows your forces the most
maneuverability and will make reaching preferred terrain their first priority.