Sunday, May 17, 2015

Should Assault Happen All At Once, Or Persist Over Multiple Turns?

Still From The Movie Kingsman
Hey there. It's been a long two weeks, which included some vacation time in Vegas, but now I'm back  and working on the rules again. As I'm working out an outline of what still needs to be done though, a question popped up that I need some community feedback on. Which is: "How should Assaults work?".

Option 1: The 40K Way

We're all familiar with how 40K does assaults. You charge into contact in the assault phase, and fight one round of combat. The loser tests to see if they run away. If they don't the combat continues in the next turn's assault phase.


Everyone is familiar with it. There would be some changes due to our Initiative System though.


Combats can drag out for 4-5 turns pretty easily, and thus add a lot of time to the game. Especially as new units pile on in later turns.

Option 2: The Flames of War Way

To over-simplify it a bit, the close-combat fighting in Flames of War just keeps going back and forth until one side breaks. Instead of a drawn out messy rugby brawl, you get something more akin to American Football, where you line up your assaulting units, hit the enemy, and see who is left standing at the end of the turn.


Combats are instantly decisive. You spend half the game getting everyone into perfect positions to assault, and then you strike. Whether you succeed or fail has an immediate effect on your options during your next turn.

Perhaps more importantly, combats are faster to complete, and less complex overall.


Combats are harder to pull off, as you really need to prepare the unit you're going to assault properly before moving in.

Doing 4-5 rounds of combat all at once creates a sort of "time warp" effect, where everything else on the battlefield feels like it's standing still until the combat completes. Personally, I don't mind this, but CaulynDarr isn't so keen on it.

Option 3: Something More... Dynamic

We've talked before about combining shooting and melee into a single "combat" phase. One where units would fight over multiple turns, but unengaged models would still be able to shoot.


It would be different, and possibly much more immersive. Less static.


I'm thinking that it would be even more complex and time consuming, in the end, then the current 40K system is. To address that complexity, I've been breaking up the turn phase rules into other sections, so that everything isn't dumped on the player at once, but I just can't get up the motivation to do anything further with it. That's a bad sign.

Basically, while I think the idea might be workable, it's a bit of a gamble. If we didn't have any other defining features (Evasion, Floating Initiative, Suppression, Visibility), I'd be more excited about it, but I'd rather just adopt the 40K or Flames assault systems to use our unique features instead. I'm to the point where I just want to get the game done. :)

My preference (to speed up play) would be to adopt the Flames "sudden death" method of close-combat, but I want to see what everyone else thinks first.


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