The slim rule book arrived & I’ve read them. I’ve made some notes in a “review” that’s mainly for me but you may want to comment.
The rules are simple & flexible. The author invites you to modify or add anything you don’t like. I’ve already thought about tweaks & modifications (see below).
I think they’d be quick to learn but have that tactical challenge that pays any finesse you can bring to the game (not unlike SAGA).
Points of Interest:
- Scenario-driven. Not just about slaughtering your enemies. Also allows natives to have tactical possibilities unlike TSATF.
- 1 figure = I man. Hence: large skirmish game. Default unit sizes can be easily adjusted to fit my current AZW units. I feel the minimum size game (24 points) is way too small & could easily be doubled & still be manageable, time wise.
- No unit facing except for crewed weapons & Regular infantry in Close Order
- Each unit dices to do 1 action per turn from a finite pool (10, though all not open to all types). Some units additionally get a free action & units can react (eg if attacked, defend themselves). I *wonder* if I could add native “Skirmish” units to the main game? That is, half-sized units that could move & shoot in the same turn? Help get the “irregular” feel to native warfare.
- Each unit requires a figure who is clearly the Leader. This figure’s attributes modify the unit’s actions. Could be very “gamey”.
- Units can have their default abilities enhanced or degraded ( eg Line infantry can be “Sharpshooters” or “Poorly armed” etc)
- Differentiation between Mounted infantry & true cavalry
- A card system is suggested for multi-player games (eg TSATF cards?)
- Not just a good solo system (“Playing against Mr Babbage”) but examples where the players can be in a team versing the auto-pilot Zulus.
- You need markers (Leaderless units, Pinned units, Close order, Gone to Ground)
- Each unit needs a written unit profile with 10 pieces of information (most just a number).
This also means every unit needs a name (1<sup>st</sup> platoon Company A 1/24<sup>th</sup> Foot or Unmarried Zulus: White shields with red dots etc) on a label for quick ID.
The upshot is preparation before a game: you could not just turn up with a bunch of units.
- No dismount/mount for Mounted infantry or even need for two sets of figures for the one unit. Given the trouble I’ve gone to have such units, a tweak is needed. Could mount/dismount be added or subsumed in Move action? Could dismounted short range for carbines be lengthened to rifle range to make such an action worthwhile?
- Some possibly dubious concepts eg “pinned units” can be shot through or targeted. They don’t seem to be lying down but how can they not limit line of sight? And 180 degree field of fire: for a line of infantry? Hmmmm.
I’ll knock together a few solo games & try things out before I bring it to my pals