EXERT FROM APPENDIX 1 from Don Featherstone's Battles With Model Soldiers
(The book that got me started.)

"Nothing in these pages is a dictate, no word says you must or you shall do it this way. On the contrary, the book sets out from the very beginning to stimulate the reader to think for himself, and to use what he has read merely as a foundation for efforts and ideas which reflect his own temperament and character. Only in this way will he obtain maximum satisfaction from the hobby of battling with model soldiers."

-Don Featherstone 1918 - 2013

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Hats of Tin (amended 22 Oct)

Helmets of Steel
A Rough Draft of a simple set of rules for 20thC  wargames fought on a grid.
Inspired by Bob Cordery's Portable Wargame but based on The Hexed General 
Oct 22 amendments in red italics

A few assumptions: Time is variable, minor or ineffective activities are happening but not shown, for example cavalry is assumed to dismount to shoot and mount to move.  Units are platoons or companies of old fashioned rifle troops or sections or platoons of troops with automatic weapons. Armour and weight of gun is relative to period. Superior fire is relative. Could include such things as assault engineers with flamethrowers when assaulting, infantry with extra automatic weapons, infantry with effective A/T weapons assaulting or being assaulted by tanks, artillery or tanks with superior ammunition, optics or training and so on.

Figure losses indicate unit effectiveness level rather than casualties.
All measurements are through sides not corners.

Stacking limit is 1 unit per area after movement. Troops who are adjacent to a truck or boat may embark and are then removed. Troops being carried may disembark onto an empty area. Troops being carried do not normally shoot or assault unless in a specialized fighting carrier. Commanders are not units and may stack or attach with any unit .

Turn Sequence is IGO UGO determined at start of game, usually attacker first or dice for it.

Orders. Roll 1d6 for the Force Commander to see how many units may be ordered. Each subordinate Commander may order 1 unit under his command in addition to the Force Commander's roll. Commanders do not need orders. A unit may be ordered to move OR shoot OR rally OR assault.OR go into overwatch.

Units may move in any direction and face any direction after moving. Units may only move adjacent to known enemy if assaulting. A unit which is adjacent to an enemy may only move to an area which is not adjacent.
Infantry, infantry support and Heavy Tanks may move 2 areas. Difficult terrain counts as 2 areas.
Cavalry & Tanks move 3 areas. Difficult terrain counts as 3 areas.
Fast Tanks and Armoured cars move 4 areas. Difficult terrain counts as 3 areas for tanks and is impassible for Armoured cars.
Trucks and artillery move 2 areas and may not enter difficult terrain but each road area counts as 1/2 if following road.It costs 1/2 area to limber/unlimber or load/unload. Light guns may move 1 area without limbering and may enter difficult terrain if doing so.
Commanders move as type.

Difficult terrain is any terrain with woods, buildings, steep slopes, fordable river etc. A unit must have enough movement to enter so for example infantry that has moved 1 area may not then enter or cross difficult terrain. Roads negate terrain. Some terrain will provide cover and block LOS. This must be defined before the game. If the difficult terrain runs between two otherwise clear areas, for example if a stream runs between 2 areas, then the areas only count as difficult if moving across the obstacle. Barbed wire is difficult terrain which does not provide cover or block line of sight however it is destroyed by infantry or tanks that have crossed it. .

Shooting. A unit may pivot before firing.  Roll 2 dice die per unit except commanders roll only 1.
If a commander is attached he adds his fire to their's. Arc of fire is 45 degrees out front. The firer must have a line of sight to the target area except mortar and artillery may fire if there is a spotter who has line of sight. Both spotter and firer must get an order and neither may move.  They must both have radios or be connected by telephone. Line of sight is blocked by some terrain and by troops of either side. If firing against a target which is adjacent to a friendly unit, re-roll any misses against the friendly units

Overwatch.  A unit with an overwatch order does nothing during its turn but may shoot once during the enemy turn at a unit which is moving or which has fired. If it declines to do so when the enemy action is taken, it may not go back later and shoot at that unit. Overwatch shooting against an enemy unit may take place after it shoots or after it has moved at least one area.

Range: Infantry 3 areas,  MG, Light Gun 5 areas, Mortar, Lt Medium Gun. 6 areas, Heavy Gun 7 areas, Field artillery 20 areas.  Line of fire is blocked by terrain or troops of either side.

Effect. Each die scoring 5 or 6 after modifiers causes 1 hit on the target. .
Target modifiers: -1 vs cover. -1 vs lt armour, -2 vs medium armour, -3 vs heavy armour or pillbox.
Firer modifiers: +1 medium gun or superior firepower , +2 heavy gun, +1 infantry, cavalry or tank assaulting or being assaulted, +1 shooting or attacking from enemy flank or rear.

A regular unit is destroyed when it has accumulated 3 hits. Militia by 2, Elites by 4. If a unit takes more than 1 hit from a round of fire, they must take 1 hit but they may convert some or all of the remaining hits to retreats.  If so the unit will immediately retreat 1 move for each hit converted. Leaders are destroyed by 1 hit but if attached to the unit the owning player chooses where to put the hits.

Assaulting. If a unit moves adjacent to an enemy unit an assault must be resolved. The defending unit rolls first if the attacker is in their front arc otherwise they roll after the attacker. Use the shooting chart including assault modifiers where appropriate. If the defending unit retreats or is destroyed the assaulting unit must occupy the area that was assaulted. A unit which begins adjacent to the enemy does not have to be given an Assault order Troops in cover who launch an assault lose the benefit of their cover.

Rallying. A unit which has accumulated 1 or more hits and is not adjacent to an enemy may be ordered to rally. Roll 1 die. On a score of 5 or 6 1 hit is cancelled  +1 if a Commander attached. A unit which has been destroyed cannot rally.

Optional Rule. If both sides agree before the game, allow units that shoot with 1 less die than normal to move 1 area after firing regardless of type and terrain except that units still may not move into or across impassible terrain. This does not affect assaults. .

Additonal rules needed for to be added for aircraft, mines, engineering, trains, supplies, and more.

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