Fast and furious action from start to finish
17 December 2021
One of the areas that Peter was keen to explore in this latest ruleset release, Fire and Move - Infantry, was the approach Infantry sections would make when moving forwards or waiting for the enemy.
Stealth, quiet and cover are very important when searching for an enemy presence, but how troops react to contact can be very different and unpredictable.
Within the bounds of the Game Turn, there are six steps to play through. Within the game turn every player will have a player turn, of which there are five steps, to complete. These are steps a. to e. before continuing on to finish the game turn.
We are focussing on Step a. for this article - Patrolling Encounter the first part of each players turn.
Each player will begin their initiative by placing their scouts onto the board of play. Either at the edge or by scenario instruction.
We felt this approach was important as platoons rarely approached suspected enemy positions with scouting forward first, blundering into traps is the stuff of films and drama. But,by letting the scenario designer place scouts or troops in a game this could give you games with a dramatic approach, such as forcing platoons and sections up a road to attack the town across open ground without scouting - rather like in the TV series the Band of Brothers where Easy Company attacked up the road to Carentan.
In the case of a Scouting unit that moves to within two hexes of an enemy base (as shown below) we have a reaction decision. This is one of three choices.
- Move away having discovered the enemy.
- No move and stay in cover and perform no more initiative tasks
- Stay in place or move closer and perform an encounter check on the Encounter Check Table.
If the player decides to do an encounter check, then roll a die 6, add or minus modifiers and then check on the table.
Depending on the result of the encounter check you will either have been spotted by the enemy, spotted by each other, or spotted the enemy then you will have encounter action to perform. If the encounter results in sections being deployed, then all hell can break loose.
When troops are required to be placed on the table, there are certain tasks to follow about where they can be placed and how, as shown below.
Sections can be placed in formation on the table as these three examples show:
In File Formation - 2 bases, one behind the other
In Line Formation - 2 bases side by side
In Loose Formation - 1 base in each adjacent hex
We are trying to reflect the experience of the platoons with their various groups, squads or sections, representing infantry companies. They experience or suffer all of the combat friction that happens to the “poor bloody infantry” on their doorstep up close.
However, and most importantly, this game is meant to be easy, fast and furious with all the action that entails. All players will be involved in the fun of the game during every turn, watching every move across all the initiatives in the turns. They will be witnessing the changing fortunes of the players they are fighting alongside and against.
To find out more about the thinking behind Fire & Move - Infantry, you may want to read our earlier article, which you can find by clicking here
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