Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Rules: The Close-Combat Phase (Part 1)

I'm not done writing up the entire Close-Combat phase yet, but here's the first 3 pages of what will probably be 6. Which describe who's in combat, defensive fire, consolidation moves, etc. Comment away!

The Close-Combat Phase (Part 1)
In WarStrike, Close-Combat is not a static affair. Where blobs of infantry meet, stand still, and then tediously hack at one another with swords and claws for turns on end. Instead, WarStrike takes a wider, more dynamic approach. Rather than focus on melee alone, it’s Close-Combat actually encompasses both close-range shooting & maneuver, in addition to traditional melee attacks.
The other big difference is that in WarStrike, Close-Combat is always played out to completion within the same turn in which that combat begins. Thus, when your troops meet in Close-Combat, one side will always win, and the other lose, before the next player turn begins.
Taken in total, these differences mean that Close-Combat in WarStrike is always a bloody, decisive affair. Forming, quite often, the penultimate moment of the battle. Where victory or loss is finally decided between the players.
Close-Combat Phase Sequence
There are 6 Steps to the Close-Combat Phase. These are:
1.             Who’s In Close-Combat?
2.             Defensive Fire
3.             Attacker Consolidation
4.             Close Combat Sequence
5.             Loser Falls Back
6.             Winner Consolidates
1. Who’s In Close-Combat?
Before you can determine who wins a combat, you... have to know who’s fighting!
A unit will be considered to be in Close-Combat if at least one of it’s models is within 6” of any enemy model. All units belonging to current player (the Attacker)are considered to be ‘Attacking Units’, while those of the opposing player (the Defender)will be considered to be ‘Defending Units’.
Initiating Close-Combat
Since Close-Combat only happens when enemy models get within 6” of each other, and resolves within the same turn, it can only be initiated by the current player as a result of their units’ movement during the previous Action Phase.
If the current player wants Close-Combat to happen during their turn, they need only move one of their units within 6” of one or more enemy units. That’s all!
Thus, there is no ‘charge’ move in WarStrike, and the normal rules for Moving Around The Enemy still apply. Which will prevent a unit from moving it’s models into base contact with enemy models during the Action Phase.
1.   Defensive Fire
The Defender’s unit’s aren’t going to just stand there and let an attacking unit charge into Close-Combat with them. If they can, they’ll attempt to shoot an attacking unit as it runs towards them!
Once the attacking and defending units of the Close-Combat have been determined, each defending unit in the combat will have the opportunity to conduct defensive fire against any attacking unit within 6”.
Other units in the defender’s Strike Force aren’t going to just stand still either. If they can, they’ll try and help their brothers in arms.
Defending units outside of the Close-Combat will also have the opportunity to conduct defensive fire. If the distance from their unit leader to the attacking unit is within that unit’s current Awareness Range (Aw).
Conducting Defensive Fire
Defensive fire is easy enough to do... Unless of course a unit has been pinned down by suppressing fire from the attacker.
To see if a unit may fire in defense against an attacking unit, make note of how many suppression markers the unit has. If it has none, it may conduct Defensive Fire automatically.
However, if it has one or more markers, then it must roll a Ld check exactly as if it were attempting to perform an action in the Action Phase. If this Ld check is failed, then the unit will do nothing at all. They are too distracted or pinned down by the enemy to take any shots an at attacking unit. If the test is passed, then the unit may conduct Defensive Fire.
Defensive Fire Targets
Who a unit may shoot with their defensive fire depends on whether they’re in the combat, with an enemy unit running towards them; or out of the combat, where they have more freedom to pick their targets.
Defending units in the Close-Combat may only fire at an attacking unit which is within 6” of their own unit.
Defending units which are not in the Close-Combat may fire at any attacking unit which is within the current Aw range of their own unit leader.
Any unit conducting Defensive fire, may only fire Snap Shots at an attacking unit.
Suppression & Close-Combat
Suppression is a huge part of the Close-Combat Phase, just as it was in the Action Phase. However, WarStrike’s Close-Combat happens in such a compressed span of time compared to the Action Phase, that your troops will have little time to mentally recover from the effects of Suppression. Unless they see their enemy flee, their spirits will continue to fall until one side or the other breaks under the strain.
Suppression Markers are never removed from a unit during the Close-Combat phase. Even for successful Ld checks to perform Defensive Fire, or to continue combat itself.
However, a unit which wins a Close-Combat may immediately remove one suppression marker for each enemy unit that they either Rout, or force to Fall Back from Close Combat. Even if they are still in combat with other enemy units when this happens.
3. Attacker Consolidation
After the Defender’s units have had a chance to conduct defensive fire, each attacking unit will have the opportunity to automatically perform a Consolidation Move.
Consolidation Moves
Whenever a unit is required to make a Consolidation Move, this means that it may move up to 1/2 of it’s normal Mv value, rounded down.
A Consolidation Move is always unaffected by area terrain or hills. Though it is still affected by the crossing of Obstacles, Structure Walls, and the normal penalties for moving between the different levels of a Structure.
Note that Consolidation Moves may be made in any direction, not just towards the enemy.
This means that a unit may, during a consolidation move, end the combat simply by moving more than 6” away from all enemy units. Or they might choose to draw additional enemies into the combat by moving within 6” of an enemy unit that was not previously in the combat.
Consolidation Moves are also exempt from the normal rules for Moving Around The Enemy, and are thus the only way of getting into base contact with enemy models for the purposes of melee attacks with fists, swords, and other such hand-to-hand weapons.
(End Part 1)

Once I finish up the rest, I'll combine the entire section into one post. Unless I decide to split this stuff up. Dunno yet. :)

BTW: The Reaction Phase is now gone again. I folded it's rules into the Close-Combat Phase. I've updated the last Turn Sequence post with the change.

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