Wednesday 30 August 2023
Sunday 20 August 2023
Monday 7 August 2023
This brings me to the one single bone of contention in the rules for this game. Stuart is of course tweaking and refining his WWI rules with every game and following our last WWI game, he made a small change to the Melee rules that I think was probably a mistake. I would say that of course because myself and Steve found the change to our mutual disadvantage, but let me explain and maybe you can draw your own conclusions.
Melee is decided by a series of d10s. One for each base of figures still in play. Additional dice can be added for defending favorable ground, charging, etc. In addition, defenders usually hit on a lower dice roll than attackers so the 'favorable ground' bit is effectively applied twice. So for example, four attackers attack four defenders in a slit trench which is classed as light cover. The defender would get four d10s for troops, and +1d10 for favourable ground. The defender hits on a 6+. The attacker meanwhile gets four dice for troops, plus one for charging, but hits on an 8+. So in a straight fight, the defender in cover has an advantage. (There are other dice that can be added for trained or specialist troops but for the purposes of keeping this example simple, I'm leaving them out).
The wiley attacker will therefore bring as much firepower to bare on the defender before going into the attack. This may mean targeting the position with artillery or weakening the defender with rifle and machine gun fire before getting stuck in with Boyonets. In Fig 2 below, the defender has been whittled down before the attacker charges in. Now the defender only has three dice to the attacker's five, although the hit differential remains the same with the defender hitting on a 6+ and the attacker on an 8+.
So the attacker is incentivized to bring as much overwhelming manpower to bare as possible, to swamp the defenders and take the position. So in Fig 3 below both the attackers and defenders have taken casualties but now the attacker brings two companies to swamp the defenders. In this example, the defender gets 3 dice for figures and one for the softcover hitting on a 6+, while the defender gets 6 dice for troops plus one for charging, still hitting on an 8+. The attacker still has a hard job but by bringing lots of troops to the melee, and with a bit of luck on the dice, stands a chance at winning the melee and taking the position.