Second Moves

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BrettPT
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Second Moves

Post by BrettPT » Sat May 03, 2014 8:40 pm

Another idea I thought I'ld throw out for version 1.1 relates to grand tactical movement.

In a recent large game we had (1815, 3000 point a side) Andy commented that I was mad to have held the French Guard infantry in central reserve, as this almost assured that they would not play any influential part in the game.

Because of the fast pace of combat in FoGN, a divisional level attack can be over in 1-3 turns. This often means that troops held in reserve are unable to get to the threatened area fast enough to influence the result.

At 800 points, this is even more apparent. Unless they move and commit themselves in the first turn, Infantry kept in reserve are often unable to influence the battle before your army is 30:10'd.

An option to perhaps encourage keeping reserves, and encourage a more 'grand tactical manoeuvre game' might be to expand the '2nd move' rule to an 'additional move' rule. As long as you keep passing a CMT for each move, and remain outside of 6MU throughout, you can make a 3rd, 4th or 5th move.

The likely impact of this would be:

1. The attacker would (CMTs permitting) sometimes be in a position to engage (ie move into 6MU) in the 2nd turn rather than the current 3rd turn. However the chance of arriving piecemeal would be increased as not all units would pass the 2 CMTs needed to close quickly, or CP shortage might impact on the rate of advance. This would speed the game up a little, effectively compacting much of the first 2 moves of the game into a single move.

2. The defender would be able to wait to commit reserves a little longer, hopeful of being able to move 18MU or more to get into position.

3. High quality reserves would be encouraged, as they are more likely to quickly be deployed (pass CMTs) where needed.

Thoughts?

hazelbark
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Re: Second Moves

Post by hazelbark » Sat May 03, 2014 10:57 pm

I am VERY nervous of this.

So I have an exceptional Army commander and say a skilled divisional commander of Cavalry.

I can now move 3 units (brigade move) 40 MU.

This will RADICALLY empower cavalry.

I am the attacker I can deploy my Cav on my right and by the end of turn 1 have most of them on my left.

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Re: Second Moves

Post by hazelbark » Sat May 03, 2014 11:05 pm

BrettPT wrote:
2. The defender would be able to wait to commit reserves a little longer, hopeful of being able to move 18MU or more to get into position.
Generally I would favor some mechanism to allow the defender to have a reserve that can shift to a point of decision.

Maybe a unit that starts over 18 MU from enemy AND begins within 8 MU of your LOC gets a free move that and takes place before the units actual first move. If the move would require a CMT then a CP can be expended. This give your reserve two moves before you need to take a CMT for a 3rd. It allows an attack too launch a reserve somewhat but more allows the defender to react.

Not sure this works either btw.

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Re: Second Moves

Post by SirGarnet » Sun May 04, 2014 7:31 am

Reminds me of burning dice PIPs for grand tactical shifts in DBM. Had its good points and bad points.

In our context, wing and center reserves would be dedicated to supporting their sector. In a sizable battle, there might be one or two large formations as an overall reserve. Good judgment and timing were key to their effective use - this should also be the case in game, and once committed to a particular path of march should be very hard to redirect elsewhere.

With multiple movement, it should be represented that Hasty movement creates fatigue and disorder, particularly in a passage of lines. If there is a multiple-move roll, maybe the intended path and desired number of moves could be noted or declared before starting to roll.

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Re: Second Moves

Post by shadowdragon » Sun May 04, 2014 3:17 pm

It's great fun to fight a huge battle with thousands and thousands of miniatures per side at a level beyond that intended by the rules but really this ignores the time and effort to get larger formations in action. Something else is needed beyond grand tactical moves. The grand tactical speed of movement would only occur once the reserve corps had been activated and had itself sorted out for it's mission. Fast movement for reserves without that would actually exacerbate the time distortion. The only rules I know that attempted that army to corps level command and control was Empire - although their rules for that were quite biased towards the French.

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Re: Second Moves

Post by hazelbark » Tue May 06, 2014 2:20 pm

I do also think that the time to get into action is an important historical friction.

Players want to get to the point of decision. In this era generals tended to pick and create the point of decision.

The dithering of do I commit here or there is often an interesting part of history and of games. I find few rules needed because players run the gamut of history.
1) Over commit from the beginning. Russians at Austerlitz
2) Consider here then go here to get to the right place and then commit to late. D'Erlon on June 16.

Plus players have different approaches.
I know when I think I know where the point of decision is I will race everyone as fast as I can at whatever speed. And I often have to hold up to reassemble because my quickness means I arrive initially ill-timed. I get there fast with something, but I have to make sure it doesn't get chopped piecemeal.
I know another player who is so methodical the Austrians are quick by comparison.
We've all see the player that can never resist the up the gut charge.

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Re: Second Moves

Post by MikeHorah » Tue May 06, 2014 3:37 pm

shadowdragon wrote:It's great fun to fight a huge battle with thousands and thousands of miniatures per side at a level beyond that intended by the rules but really this ignores the time and effort to get larger formations in action. Something else is needed beyond grand tactical moves. The grand tactical speed of movement would only occur once the reserve corps had been activated and had itself sorted out for it's mission. Fast movement for reserves without that would actually exacerbate the time distortion. The only rules I know that attempted that army to corps level command and control was Empire - although their rules for that were quite biased towards the French.
I agree with your reservations and as you say Grand Tactical is about on the battle field not getting to it. I would not introduce this into the core part of a V2.0, but as an optional method for big battles.

It can kind of work in Fire and Fury if you use 10 or 6mm scales and fight along the length rather than breadth of the table and you array brigade stands in long march columns one behind the other advancing along a turnpike ,or something passing for a road , if there is one ,and then have to decide when and where to start bringing the Corps into line which takes time- a good few moves . And like F&F ideally you need some uncertainty in how long each formation takes to do that. In F&F the d roll for movement can still result in a half move .( as I recall ) and you get double moves.

So for a big FoG(N) game ( and not for standard rules), I would start from the assumption that a force - lets say a Corps d'armee is advancing to a battle field - marching to the sound of the guns perhaps- and is more than 48 MUs ( say?) from the main action at the start - maybe on a 12 foot table and at the far end? The wider/longer the table the better this works .

It kicks off in march column in its own half and up the halfway line. That's if from the long edge but its LOC might be off the short edge ( so up to 24 MUs max from the short edge as well) ( and maybe the LOC needs a detached guarding unit!) So all units are one base wide ( 4-6 deep)and all guns limbered and with each division arrayed one unit behind the other base to base, whether on a road or not.

Divisions themselves do not have to be one behind the other and can advance abreast with a maximum stretch across them of say 20MUs. Leave attachments off until in tactical. Some columns might well stretch back off table but they will come on as the heads of columns advance.

You use the same move distances as in the main rules allowing for terrain etc . You use your Commanders' CPs to determine whether they move one twice - or a maximum thrice - if there are the CPs to do it- as normal it’s a CMT - treating each Divisional column as a Brigade group regardless of size. It is after all “follow the leader.”

The Corps commander can assign CPs to Divs to help speed them up as usual . But the whole division moves at the speed of the front unit in the column (and the speed of the slowest unit overall) and has as many, or as few, moves as the front unit - up to three. The number of dice per CMT should be the number related to the majority of units in the division ( Vet, drilled, Conscript) with rerolls only if 100% are Superior, Gd Superior or Poor). So each Division may proceed at different and not always helpful pace. Those that hang back can be chivvied along by the Corps commander using his CPs next turn :roll: .

The Corps commander can of course start to deploy his units into tactical formations and moving as normal at his discretion.

There is an attraction to this which is that players then have a purpose in setting up flank recce forces with Cossacks et al to screen delay etc. A corps moving this way might equally validly deploy light cavalry or an Advance Guard tactically to do the same thing

You could easily use cards one base wide and x bases deep to represent each column until within sight of an enemy and if you are more than 60MUs from them in any case.

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