Congested street fighting (again) in Sawmill Village. This time Red won by a nose.
This has been a good exercise this week and things are all finally, falling nicely into place with 2 distinct rule systems for 2 types of game.
Having rescued MacDuff and finally getting it working the way I wanted, it is once again my game of choice for single toy soldier games. That in turn has allowed me restore Hearts of Tin to its original purpose as a quick game for elements or stands of troops, capable of handling small to medium sized historical battles. Both games have been updated and can be found under links to the left, subject to further proof reading and play testing.
To avoid my old problem of having 2 sets of rules with the same name, 1 for the late18thC/early 19thC and 1 for the mid and late 19thC, I have renamed the 19th/20th C set With MacDuff To the Front and will leave the 18thC game as With MacDuff to the Frontier, or at least I will when I get to fixing it. The 2 rules will be as alike as I can get them to be, the main difference being in weapons.
Leaving aside minor changes, the main changes between the original and current MacDuff, at least in my mind, are:
1. A reduction in friction. This has been done partly by simplifying the Control Check and asking it to do less and partly by substituting fixed for variable movement rates for most troops. This has reduced the number of steps speeding play, eliminated some double jeopardy and increased player control over their units decreasing frustration and increasing engagement.
2. A reduction in fiddleyiness. A lot of minor restrictions and clever bits have been dropped as being of little import for the end result and, based on experience running multi-player games over 15 years, of interest to a minority of players.
3. A reduction is staying power of units. I have reluctantly, finally given up on my casualty recovery rules. The essential part of the original idea that units should be able to be repulsed, rally and come back has been retained in a different format but units now slide irreversibly towards destruction and a decision is reached more quickly and decisively.
The updates to Hearts of Tin was largely to simply revert all references to groups of figures to references to "companies" but I also took the opportunity to reinstate the ability of better troops to absorb more hits. When I get a chance I want to replace the fire and melee charts with unit capability charts listing melee and shooting "to hit" numbers and ranges and movement for various units which will allow for easy addition of tweaked unit types.
Now to test HofT using 1/72nd ACW troops, play an 1840's MacDuff game and get casting and painting troops in khaki!.