Sunday, November 18, 2012

Let's Think About Grenades

I've been reading an Army Field Manual on the proper use of grenades, and it's generated the following set of rough ideas for how we might implement them in M42. Let's kick 'em around!

Grenade Prep & Timing:

  1. Based on the distance the models cover in a turn, our seconds-per-turn is somewhere close to 7.
  2. Fragmentation Grenades typically have a 4 - 5.5 second fuse.
  3. So... while you could conceivably throw a grenade within the time span of a single turn, that doesn't really leave much room for digging them out of pockets or off belts. Plus the time it takes to identify a target and communicate your intentions to your squad mates.
  4. So it seems like first off, we might want to require grenades to be 'prepped' one turn prior to being thrown. Presumably by requiring the model doing the throwing to be marked and not be able to do anything else, like shooting, as they do the prepping.
  5. This would also allow the unit getting thrown at to get some shots in at the thrower. Probably with the caveat that they must be within the Awareness range of the thrower. Probably using the Snap Fire rules/stats to do so.
  6. There should probably be a limit to 1 of the models in a unit being able to throw at a time.

Throwing A Grenade:

  1. Models throwing grenades shouldn't be allowed to move. Or should only be able to move a couple of inches at most.
  2. Q: If you pop a model who's getting ready to throw, should there be a chance of the grenade going off? It would be cool, but I'm wary of the potential for randomness.
  3. Likewise, what about throwing grenades back? It happened enough to be realistic, but again, the randomness might be an issue.
  4. If we did allow throw-backs, what should the mechanic be? So far I'm thinking that if you don't hit anyone with the blast, then the defender should get to toss it back 6" or some such reduced distance.
  5. Range to scale is about 10", but I'd be comfortable with 10" + S or just a straight 12"
  6. Grenades are often used to avoid giving away a position. So you should probably be allowed to toss them out during an ambush as soon as it's revealed.
  7. The longer the grenade throw, the more time the enemy has to react.
  8. So... if we're just laying down templates and rolling to hit every model underneath, they should probably get a +1 Ev for every 4" or 6" of the throw.

Grenade Blasts/Damage:

  1. The to-scale wound radius for modern frags (smaller than WW2 frags) would be about 9.2 inches. Curved like our other weapon ranges, it would be 5.4 inches. Or one inch wider in diameter than GW's big Apocalypse blast template. Which is huge, but that blast radius is also affected by where you throw a frag.
  2. Frags thrown into trenches or between terrain would have their blast radius reduced. Someone lower in position than the blast, or around a corner, or not standing right next to a trench, would be pretty safe.
  3. If throwing the grenade into rubble, we should probably reduce the radius overall.
  4. Grenades are almost never thrown up stairs (because they tend to roll, or get kicked, back down).
  5. The noise of a Frag is pretty disorienting. So you would probably get a suppression marker no matter what.
  6. Having decent grenade mechanics may dictate using a lot more terrain than 40K. As in 50%+ coverage. So that they can be tossed close, but have a wall or whatever deflect the blast in certain directions.
  7. I'm also starting to think that we should have a -1 Ev penalty for units that are firing. Grenades could then be something that you could throw without a penalty.

  1. White smoke grenades are often used to cover an approach as a unit tries to move up into frag Grenade range.
  2. When being ambushed, you're supposed to toss frags first, then smoke to disorient the attackers.
  3. The types of grenade used by a unit are usually mission-specific. So we might let the player choose at list-creation time and/or specify everyone's loadout in the task force mission description (i.e. this is a hostage rescue mission, so you get stuns instead of frags).
  4. Or here's a list, and you can take 2 types from it before the mission.
    • White Smoke (portable cover)
    • Colored Smoke (Marks positions for other units, air support, etc.)
    • Frags
    • Stuns (Suppression without killing)
    • Incendiary (Starts fires)
    • Bombs (Thermite or explosives to destroy equipment)
    • Satchel Charges or Mines (Tank-Killing)
    • Riot (Tear Gas - Maybe good against Turids/Gruin?)
  5. Pretty much only Frags are used up close against enemy troops.
  6. Grenades can be used in assault to cover a retreat. Especially smoke and incendiary types.
Anti-Tank Tactics:

  1. Tanks can't see so well up close.
  2. A 40-Foot dead zone to-scale is about 7.5". Curved like our other ranges, it would be about 4.6".
  3. So 6" seems like a nice middle-ground.  This could also be a vehicle stat. Maybe even per-facing.
  4. Within this distance we could boost Ev. Maybe even by 2x.
  5. Reactive Armor is a bitch to assault. :)
  6. Incendiary grenades are preferred for taking out engines.
  7. Dropping frags into crew compartments is considered second-best.

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