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TEST Re: (TFT) TFT Wargame 4
Completely lame, no new stuff here, just trying to generate a digest
On Wed, 19 Apr 2006 12:36:13 -0700
Rick Smith <email@example.com> wrote:
> I have made a list of things that are important
> for modeling the strength of military unit using
> modern military science thought.
> I will assume that these values or measures are
> "true" as I believe that most medieval commanders
> lacked our history of thought behind military
> science. (Also I work with what we know...)
> However, I started thinking about how this
> would be used by players (the mini-maxing beings
> so many of them are) and realized that if we made
> how the unit's strength calculated then it would
> act as a road map to improving their forces.
> This is fine unless you want them to be in
> character and not have modern knowledge. Hmmmm,
> I'll leave that up to the GM, lets see where
> this takes us for now.
> Let us say that the PC's are the leaders of
> a company of 30 to 100 men. We have them write
> up a card that organizes the important info
> about their company. They crank thru some
> calculations and come up with values to draw
> onto the counter that represents their company.
> A similar process applies to each wizard &
> his apprentices and to each leader & his body
> guard. These are treated as specialty squads
> which will have special rules for handling
> (Basic game is very straight forward, with
> all rules for specialty squads being advanced
> So PC's can show up in the TFT game in two
> ways: Their adventuring party can either be a
> wizard / lord squad OR they can train & outfit
> a full company. In both cases the complex
> calculations happen BEFORE the game. The
> wargame should play fast and clean.
> I think this should work.
> Here are some things that the game should
> capture. Odd facts, my biases and some thoughts
> in a not very organized way...
> THE PRINCIPLES OF WAR:
> - Maintenance of the Objective.
> - Economy of Force.
> - Security (kill the spies!!!)
> - Flexibility.
> - Entropy.
> TYPES OF ACTIVITIES:
> - Reserve. Out of combat perhaps resting.
> Ready to be moved to the front at short
> - Movement.
> - Meeting Engagements. Two forces advancing
> on each other will try to find and ambush
> each other. Ambushes cause the highest %
> of enemy casualties so this should not be
> - Construction. Building forts, castles,
> roads, siege weapons, etc.
> - Patrol. Going into enemy territory and
> scouting around. Very dangerous & very
> - Defense.
> - Attacking. Two basic varieties, an
> assault with heavy casualties on both sides
> and attrition / sniping which takes a lot
> longer but reduces the risk to the attacker.
> - Pursuit (chasing down a retreating force.)
> Dangerous for the pursuer. However the
> retreating force can take a LOT of damage in
> the retreat if the pursuit is aggressive.
> Cavalry excel at this of course.
> SUPPORT UNITS:
> As armies become larger and more specialized
> these tasks are broken out of companies and
> placed into separate units. An advantage of
> having them in separate units is that we don't
> have to record the expertise of each company
> for the following specialties. The disadvantage
> is that PC skills don't show up unless they are
> placed in a special unit.
> Let us consider a specialty unit for healers.
> We could build a special squad like a leader
> squad that holds a dozen or so physickers and
> assistants. This would keep the company
> counters simple. If they have lots of physickers
> they get a healer squad. If they have LOTS, they
> get TWO healer squads.
> Use this system on all the support units below.
> Ok, all specialty units are SQUADS. We allow
> unlimited stacking of squads in a hex so a
> company with many specialties has a basic
> counter and a cluster of squads with it. This
> is a nuisance, especially if we allow two or
> three companies to stack in one hex.
> The basic rules stay simple for the game.
> One problem with this idea is that the other
> player can look over your stack and learn a lot
> about its special skills. Far easier than would
> be realistic. If we put the special squads off
> map and record which company they are in, this
> adds busy work. (However if they leave their
> company, then having a squad counter is a
> Anyway, here are some possible specialties...
> - Engineers (Used for building forts putting up
> stakes, digging ditches, digging holes to trip up
> horses and building palisades. Engineers are also
> used for building and using siege weapons.)
> - Signal. (Sending battlefield communications,
> flags, horns, whistling arrows, drums, couriers
> on foot or horses.)
> - Transport. (Mules and wagons.)
> - Military Police. (We can likely dispense with.)
> - Medical.
> - Headquarters. (Maps and orders.)
> - Intelligence.
> - Magic. Can be used for all of the above in
> addition to their direct combat utility.
> NAVAL: (NOT COVERED IN THIS ESSAY, NOT LIKELY
> TO BE USED IN THE BASIC GAME.)
> MORAL FACTORS:
> Moral is key and must be represented.
> - Conviction that soldier should be fighting.
> - Modified by Leadership, training, situation,
> politics, weather, etc.
> LEADERSHIP FACTORS:
> - Nations with a long & systematic system of
> preserving military knowledge have an advantage.
> They tend to think that this wisdom is eternal
> truth and not just a passing solution to a
> - Scientific training. How easily available
> are correct military texts and how many leaders
> learn from them (directly from reading them or
> indirectly by being taught by people who know
> the same thing.)
> - Understanding the enemies weaknesses.
> - Picking leaders:
> --> Gentleman Officer (poor)
> --> Aspirant (good for small unit leaders)
> --> Exams (poor, but enforces text book knowledge)
> --> Seniority (poor unless mixed with the above.)
> - Strategic Intl. (1 report per month fine.)
> - Operational Intl. (1 per week.)
> - Tactical Int. (daily.)
> - Cryptography (based on math).
> - Cavalry Scouting. This is key and not easy to
> represent. Cavalry's most important job was to
> act as the eyes of the army. However in a top
> down map of the battle, the players can see
> - Spies <-- See art of war for several types
> of spies and how they are used.
> - Diplomats and vacationers.
> - Analysis. Figuring out what the data means
> and 'selling' it to those who need it.
> - What is chance that allies / mercenaries will
> turn on us. (Note most games do not do a good
> job of handling unreliability of mercenaries.)
> - In long campaigns, more men die of disease
> than fighting. We can likely ignore this as
> our game is operational level. So problems
> with disease would be scenario specific rules.
> - Step losses and gradual damage to units.
> Block games do this well for up to 4 steps.
> If we include attrition and low intensity
> combat (and I would like to) then this becomes
> more important. Also if you can take less
> than total damage, physickers could reduce
> or eliminate some of this damage which would
> give them something to do. For now assume
> that there are a few damage states that are
> shown with counters. Maybe put a die on the
> company to show how much damage it has. This
> gives us 7 states (no damage = no die, and
> then 6 levels of damage before unit dissolves.)
> - Observation: this design seems to be going
> to a low counter density (good) but has many
> specialty counters to show game state and
> specialty squads (bad).
> MODIFIERS TO COMBAT:
> According to my books, the following are how
> strongly the following situations affect the
> strength of military units (assuming competent
> generalship). This is based on modern warfare but
> can act as a base for our game.
> Factor: Minimum Multiplier:
> -- Terrain:
> Mountains * 0.75 to * 0.5
> Swamps * 0.80 to * 0.6
> Hills * 1.0 to * 0.8
> Sand or soft * 1.0 to * 0.8
> Buildings * 0.9 to * 0.8
> Above with forest Defensive bonus to above.
> -- Weather:
> Wet *1.0 to *0.8
> Wet kills bows.
> Wet slows movement.
> Fog / mist Helps attacker as less time to be shot.
> Extreme heat / cold Increases attrition.
> -- Command Factors:
> Leadership 1 * 0.75 Superior small unit leaders
> Leadership 2 * 0.75 Superior NCO's
> Note good leaders speed training.
> Training * 1.0 to * 0.3
> -- Posture:
> Retreat * 1.0 (multiply by attacker's force.)
> Hasty defense * 0.9
> Prepared defense * 0.8
> Fortified defense * 0.6
> -- Air Superiority (Magic superiority?)
> Slight superiority * 0.95
> Decisive " * 0.8
> Note the side with out air
> superiority will move more slowly in addition to
> the above force multiplier.
> Also if air superiority persists
> the other side is likely to develop supply problems.
> -- Surprise * 1.0 to * 0.6
> Surprise can locally help either
> side but generally favors the attacker.
> -- Supply / Sanitation problems (Combine in this game)
> * 0.8 to * 0.5
> -- Command, Control, Command & Intelligence:
> C^3I * 1.0 to 0.3
> -- Moral: * 1.0 to 0.2
> The 'resolve' of troops can be considered to be
> the willingness to keep fighting when outnumbered.
> (Where outnumbered is the number of troops times
> the equipment bonuses times the factors listed
> When the odds ratio approaches 10 even extremely
> determined troops start to fall apart. Some
> fanatics may fight to the death but other units
> will surrender or melt away. Advanced Squad Leader
> handles this with their ERL values but this takes
> a bunch of accounting.
> Note that many of the strongest factors (moral,
> C^3I, supply / sanitation & surprise) are generally
> not handled well in wargames.
> --> Moral
> Squad leader system where moral is on counter,
> and units make saving throws vs. it in various
> Some games rate units with moral and they must
> do a saving throw to DO actions.
> In strategic games, often the moral is included
> in the combat or defense factors for the unit.
> A miniature game I played had units roll for
> moral any time they took damage. They had 3 levels
> (elite, regular, green). Elite units rolled with
> an averaging die to show they were immune to
> extreme reactions.
> --> C^3I
> In Memoir '44 / Battle Cry this is handled by
> having to play cards to do things. The side with
> a better Command Group gets more cards --> usually
> better & more flexible choices.
> In ASL, some scenarios have you roll dice to
> tell you how many of your units can move.
> Striker uses an initiative rating for units.
> High initiative units do things on their own with
> out orders, lower initiative units must be ordered
> or personally lead.
> Several games use distance from the commander to
> rate how units move and fight.
> --> Supply and Sanitation
> I think this is best handled with scenario
> specific rules.
> --> Surprise / Fog of War
> Block games do a nice job of this.
> ASL uses hidden initial placement (pre recording
> some units starting locations) and ? counters to
> prevent looking thru stacks of units.
> Some games (e.g. Invasion America) use upside
> down counters to hide values. (In Inv. Am. the
> value is hidden from BOTH players!)
> Various games roll vs. stealth and ambush
> values on units.
> Thoughts on magic. Perhaps magic can be a
> general talent that can do anything that needs to
> be done. Need signaling but don't have a special
> signals squad. Fly an image of a gargoyle over
> there to give an order! Need intelligence? Fly
> a dragon above enemy and see what he is up to.
> This captures the flexibility of magic with out
> magicians having a giant combat effect which seems
> right for TFT wizards.
> ODD FACTS:
> - Personal losses of a few percent per day / division.
> (And losses include wounded not just the killed.
> Usually 3 people are wounded per death.)
> - Infantry. Only 100 to 200 days before combat stress
> causes a break down. Casualty rates of 2% / day.
> - Preparation. (If an army thinks it is well prepared
> this improves moral.)
> - Friends. The 'primary group' squad or platoon, is key
> to moral. Must work together for a few months before
> combat to mesh. Don't add new people while fight is
> going on. Wait until unit is recovering in reserve.
> - Men need 3 kg of food & 10 kg of water per day.
> Sorry the above is not better organized. This is
> largely intended as a survey of things I would like
> to include in the TFT game & to spark some discussion.
> Command and control was a huge problem for ancient
> armies, I think it is really important that it be
> handled some how in our game.
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