“I find your discussion puts your rules (concepts) very much on the line between simulation and game.”
I definitely come down more on the ‘game’ side, but want to do something that better matches my expectations of how combat should look at this echelon. Regarding that, I’m still not decided on whether the echelon is platoon-sized with individually-based troops, or company-sized with element-based troops. I’ve even had some fantasies about company-level with individually-based troops; sounds crazy, but it’s been done, IABSM is written that way.
I am also much more on game than simulation wrt games of the size I prefer, a few platoons plus support to a couple companies plus support. At this scale individual bases only make sense if using what I have heard called “sabot basing” where the individual bases are inserted to larger “unit” bases of the size I suggested, team to squad size”. This allows them to maneuver and operate as that size force but allows for individual casualties. Mind I still don’t care for the buckets of dice approach. I have played games with very high levels of detail which approach simulations but in that case (Air Superiority) I was operating usually a single plane and at most two.
“When individually based I find most rules have you making rolls with handfuls of dice…”
I’m a huge fan of 5Core’s “Kill” and “Shock” dice, and am looking hard at individually-based figures using “No End in Sight’s” version of coming up the amount of firing dice, expressed in Shock dice per weapon, with a Kill dice picked up for every two Shock dice. This makes it easy to penalize units firing for things, like “moving units halve Shock dice,” or “pinned units count Kill dice per every three Shock dice.” I feel like I’ll use that methodology whether the rules use individually-based troops or element-based troops. And they’re all D6s, no fumbling for different die types, just looking for 1s and 6s, I very much enjoy simple 😉
I also like the concept but have yet to bring 5core to the table. I have played a few games of NEiS. The first was with my son and noticed had to make up a lot of rules and concepts as we went. I assumed at the time it was unfamiliarity with the rules. I later played a couple games with a well versed opponent who also designs games. We never made it past the first “turn”. Please note with these rules a single turn can cover many repeated actions so we did quite a lot of gaming in each “turn”. First we found the roll for activations (or whatever he calls it) allowed for quite a few actions and was one of the reasons for the long turns. We felt dropping the roll from 1D6 to 1D4 would have given a better representation of our opinions wrt amount of unit actions and how quickly units would be exhausted. We also found many missing or incomplete rules as we made a point of playing the game as written. This was based on my experience with my son. The rules are not complete as written and left many unanswered or un-addressed areas. I cannot remember them now but my opponent was very put off by this. I was expecting to write or modify these sections for future reference but my buddy felt the designer fell flat on his face and it wasn’t his job to write the rules. Given the large number of these occurrences I did agree to some extent but it was my expectation that we/I might address this and produce suitable sections. I contacted the designer but was told essentially that game is done, I have gone on to other things and perhaps what I have done since covers this more thoroughly. My disappointment with this limits my intentions to pursue newer titles, although I have a few, as I feel finishing and supporting what you started should occur. As i said I have 5core company commander and read through it. I don’t agree with everything but not having played it I cannot assess how “complete” these rules may be. I also have his more recent RCW rules, the name escapes me right now, but picked it up with the intent of stealing ideas as opposed to playing it as is. This is mostly as I have a set of rules I like for the period and if I remember correctly his rules are also individually based.
I’m not familiar with Conflict of Heroes, but I’d love to hear more.
If you go to the Academy Games website you can download all their rules, scenario booklets, reduced scale maps and other items. You do need to create an account but in the few years I have been in their system I only received a few emails when they were releasing new games. The on line resources are the latest versions and most gamers keep up to date that way. The rules have images of every counter including quantities and if I remember correctly the same goes for the cards. The game is essentially a hex and counter game comparable to Squad Leader but with the addition of cards which partially replicate the effects of leaders as they do not appear but are heavily abstracted in this system. The other aspect compared to ASL is the detail or system id such that running much more than a platoon or two per side can bog the game down some. There are some early SL scenarios which have almost a battalion of infantry per side which would be unacceptable with CoH. Part of this may be the desire of current gamers to have games not longer than an hour or two as opposed to back in the day we used to game for an entire day. I remember having breakfast, lunch and dinner at the game table. But that was when I was a teen as well and that might be part of the issue (no cell phone addictions and more willingness to pay attention for hours not seconds).
A couple observations. The game system has been revised a few times. Some players are put off by this constant revision while others, such as myself, felt how the game was handled at different points in its history “felt” better. If you look closer at CoH and want to discuss we can do so then.
The other issue is the company has been around for some time but wrt CoH there are only 3 games, with 3 “major” expansions and a few more minor ones. The only games cover Barbarossa, Kursk and Guadalcanal. One of the expansions covers the German and Soviet invasions of Poland, one provides a solo system to play the game (based on feedback this system is light years head of almost all other solo solutions for games) and a procedure to design your own scenarios. The drawback is according to the company there are expansions to cover many aspects of the war in Europe which have never been released with the company seeming to ignore them and completely rewrite their basic game over and over. These games and updates are announced as imminent for years with real world release dates far down the line. Some of these have taken close to a decade and still only three titles. There are no third party vendors producing titles unlike ASL which has massive support. I do not know if this is because Academy will not allow it (probable given the popularity of the system) or if no one is interested (possible as the system is changed occasionally potentially making supplements not compatible). If you want to discuss this system further I would be happy to as I still see it as potentially the best solution for my needs.
“I feel the combat systems which cause their need will also make their existence and utilization apparent and not be called out as some separate rule.”
I agree wholeheartedly, but that’s the whole problem, isn’t it? I think John is up to something with this idea that a unit firing can’t do anything else until a leader breaks a foot off in their ass (I’m assuming a non-organic leader, i.e., not the fireteam or squad leader, must be the platoon or company commander).
I like the feel of this but writing it in a suitable way to both direct but not demand actions is the tricky part.
“If you will be creating, or want to work together to create a set of rules I would be very interested in being a part of this, either here, some other site or off line.”
Great man, I appreciate it. Progress is slow, so for not it’s just here on this thread.
Let me know if you want help or to work together. It seems we have a lot of concepts and intended results in common.
“The only real chance of causing infantry casualties from direct fire is on the first turn of fire: thereafter the chances should be very small if the target has become suppressed…”
Yes, I agree wholeheartedly.
Again how to simulate this. In CoH sides alternate a single action for each unit. The first action after a unit moved “un-cautiously” in the open that unit has a better chance of being hit if attacked. Similarly in Hind & Seek after a unit has performed it’s action(s) for the turn it can be attacked but after that initial attack the unit is considered to “go to ground” meaning an increase in it’s covered status.
“I would penalize the shooting of pinned units too…”
I’m actually already doing that in these Chunky Bandit fights, if the pinned unit is in the open (not if they’re in cover).
If it is pinned it is reacting to effective incoming fire. Why wouldn’t that effect, much less for a unit in cover as opposed to open, any unit?
“Probably indirect fire shouldn’t be penalized quite as badly.”
From which standpoint? If you’re saying a pinned mortar team should be penalized, I agree. If you’re saying a mortar team shouldn’t be able to hurt a pinned infantry target, I think they should, but be penalized as a lot of HE goes up and everyone is already down, but it’s still going to tear some stuff up. When you get into company-level fire planning, whether on the assault or defense, a staple is using machine guns to fix the enemy and pound them into submission with organic (company-level) mortars.
A lot of these discussions lead to the writing of rules which allow or encourage or demand a more specific system of handling suppressing fire.
“The effect of firing should not be linear but should be subject to diminishing returns…”
I agree, a staple here is the idea that pinned or suppressed units cannot be eliminated by direct fire, they’re going to have to be close assaulted or pounded with indirect fire. But I’m still a fan of fire having the ability to push a suppressed element back.
One of the reasons I like a 2D6 combat roll. getting to an 8 from a 7 is easier than getting from a 12 from an 11.
“Troops need the ability to suppress more than equal numbers…”
Indeed, and when I first read this I had an idea, but now that I’ve been typing it escapes me…
This will also be very dependent on weapons used. I read accounts recently that the MG42, and to a lesser extent the MG34’s high rates of fire meant less chance of causing casualties due to dispersion of fire (compared to a Bren gun) but much better chances of suppression with the accompanying rifle section being responsible for the actual casualties. Although opinion it made sense.
“Properties of the weapons themselves, especially having more machine guns and grenade launchers.”
That would certainly add more firing dice, and what I’m thinking of is letting units split firing dice, which I’m generally not a fan of.
Again more dice!! Seriously what I was meaning above. Although I have not learned enough of how grenades effect vs guns vs machine guns to make a specific statement of rules. I think splitting fire would only be possible if BOTH units/bases have a suitable leader present. This may also be based on training and unit quality.
“The sight of friends being pinned or suppressed in close vicinity is likely to make friends act pinned or suppressed too, although should be easier to rally.”
I need to think on this a bit, but I don’t think I’m on board with that. The way I typically handle this is that defending unit fires on attacking unit, and any excess ‘hits’ rolled are applied to any enemy units within 6″ of the target. So if I rolled 1 Kill dice and 2 Shock dice, and I rolled up one suppression and one pin, the target would be suppressed and another enemy unit within 6″ would be pinned; you can see this in all of the Chunky Bandit fight and, from my perspective, it quickly, efficiently, and effectively handles the issue of “1st Squad just saw 2nd Squad get pinned, should 1st Squad be pinned, too?” as a separate die roll. You roll your firepower and the effects are read and applied, couldn’t be easier (in my opinion).
Interesting solution but if an adjacent but sufficiently “distant” unit sees but is not under fire would they also be more likely to return fire in order to relieve their comrades?
Lots to think on, looking forward to continuing this chat.
AAARG. I tried to put my replies in a different colour text but it did not go through! I tried to indent my replies but my text based notebook program did I don’t know what to my paragraphs as they just vanished. Please try to follow. Thank you.