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RichardC
Posts : 187
Join date : 2018-02-12
Location : Sydney, Australia
https://coldwarhot.blogspot.com.au/

New Orders Rules and Special Rules

on Tue Mar 27, 2018 11:31 pm
Hi everyone

Over the past few weeks I have been looking at the feedback I have been getting from players on their Battlegroup: Cold War games. Everyone seems to be really enjoying their games - which I'm very chuffed with - but there seem to be a couple of points that some questions have been raised about. These points reinforce some of my own concerns that have come up in our games.

1. Soviet Orders
Many people feel like the Soviets have far too many orders - especially when you are playing larger games and take a company of Tanks and/or Motorised Infantry. Each company gives you 4 officers, so before you roll any dice for orders you can automatically have 8+ free orders. If you are then adding 3D6, and using Stal! Stal! Stal! you can get a whole lot done. All the orders mean that Soviet units don't have to really act like Soviet units - which doesn't quite give the right feel to the game.

2. NATO Shooting
Quite a few people - generally NATO players - have commented on how crappy their shooting has been - especially when trying to take out Soviet tanks at long range. In an age of stabilised guns and all sorts of fire control wizardly this does not sit well. Some have called for all NATO units to always be +1 to hit. I've long felt that this is a swing too much in the other direction, especially when you are using top of the line NATO tanks, which often have +1 to observe, +1 to hit and ignore a number of other die modifiers.

Anyway - I've been thinking about this for a long time and think I may have come up with some rules to better reflect both, give the game a bit more flavour and hopefully strengthen the game-balance and feel.

So please have a look at these new orders rules and new special rules and let me know what you think.

New Orders Rules and Special Rules
https://drive.google.com/open?id=1sm1yXA2npgM0Nn8N8_MjrDG-hUJqCeSO

Without going and editing all the lists I suggest the following. Soviet Officers only count for orders if they come from the Forward HQ section of the list or are Company Commanders elsewhere in the list.

NATO units with the Proficient Crew special rule are any unit rated Regular or better.

Please have a look, and have a crack at a game using these rules and let me know how it goes. I'll be running a test myself shortly.

Thanks

Richard

alicks
Posts : 21
Join date : 2018-04-03
Location : UK

Re: New Orders Rules and Special Rules

on Sat Apr 07, 2018 5:16 pm
Hi Richard

How would the Battle Drill work when using a BMP2 Platoon, for example: Would the entire platoon take the Battle Drill disembark action, and then once the infantry have disembarked from the transports, order each infantry section to advance using one Order each as normal? This is because the whole platoon is not using the same action.

Or can a platoons transports use the Disembark order using battle drill, and then the infantry section use battle drill to advance and fire?

Many thanks

Alex
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RichardC
Posts : 187
Join date : 2018-02-12
Location : Sydney, Australia
https://coldwarhot.blogspot.com.au/

Re: New Orders Rules and Special Rules

on Sun Apr 08, 2018 1:54 am
alicks wrote:Hi Richard

How would the Battle Drill work when using a BMP2 Platoon, for example: Would the entire platoon take the Battle Drill disembark action, and then once the infantry have disembarked from the transports, order each infantry section to advance using one Order each as normal? This is because the whole platoon is not using the same action.

Or can a platoons transports use the Disembark order using battle drill, and then the infantry section use battle drill to advance and fire?

Many thanks

Alex

Hi Alex - below is a quote from the new rules:

If a platoon of infantry has disembarked from their MICVs/APCs both the infantry and their vehicles can separately use Battle Drill, as long as they remain in line-of-sight of the Platoon Commander at all times.

So in your example above the BMPs would use Battle Drill to say move and disembark. The the disembarked infantry could use Battle Drill to advance and fire. All as long as they stay in line of sight of the Platoon Commander.

Hope that helps

Richard
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RichardC
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Join date : 2018-02-12
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https://coldwarhot.blogspot.com.au/

Re: New Orders Rules and Special Rules

on Fri Apr 20, 2018 4:48 am
Hi everyone

After some playtesting and further reflection I've made the next set of changes to the Battle Drill rules and I've also added some ATGM Ammo rules onto the same page so everything is in the one place.  Here it all is here:

New Orders Rules and Special Rules Version 2
https://drive.google.com/open?id=1O8j9QEobE1iItp9rT51PgOmtQayuvZDb

Basically the most significant change is that using the Battle Drill special rule costs one order now, rather than being free.

I'll change this on the main thread at the top of the page as well

Thanks

Richard


Last edited by RichardC on Fri Apr 20, 2018 6:18 am; edited 1 time in total
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Fitz
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Re: New Orders Rules and Special Rules

on Fri Apr 20, 2018 5:23 am
In the "Fast reloader" description:

"A vehicle that has the Fast Reloader trait does have to spend a turn reloading."

Should that be "does" or "does not"?
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RichardC
Posts : 187
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Re: New Orders Rules and Special Rules

on Fri Apr 20, 2018 6:16 am
Does not.... bugger!

Fixed now.................................................................

Richard
alicks
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Location : UK

Re: New Orders Rules and Special Rules

on Fri Apr 20, 2018 3:42 pm
Hi Ritchard

How does battle drill affect platoon support units such as AGL teams, GPMG teams and attached mortars?

If the mortar takes a different action to the platoon like shooting while the rest of the platoon needs to close for action does this mean that the entire platoon cannot use battle drill?

Alternative if the support do not use the battle drill and have to use orders for their own units and transports then this is going to severely hamper the soviet forces.

Especially if you are trying to call in mortar support, using two platoons, and maneuvering a tank platoon on an average of 4-5 order dice in a 600pt game (average of 3 or 4 rolled on 1d6 then FHQ +1).

this is not including recon units and engineering units which do not have the battle drill special rule.

i find in the games i have played so far that all it takes is one suppressed platoon leader and the entire army grinds to a halt due to lack of orders.

I suspect this will be made worse if battle drill will take up an order as well, i will play test with my gaming group and see.

many thanks

Alex


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RichardC
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Re: New Orders Rules and Special Rules

on Mon Apr 23, 2018 5:15 am
alicks wrote:How does battle drill affect platoon support units such as AGL teams, GPMG teams and attached mortars?

If the mortar takes a different action to the platoon like shooting while the rest of the platoon needs to close for action does this mean that the entire platoon cannot use battle drill?

Alternative if the support do not use the battle drill and have to use orders for their own units and transports then this is going to severely hamper the soviet forces.

Hi Alex
This is how I would handle it. Let’s say you have taken a BMP-1 Platoon and have also taken a Fire Support Section, an AGL Section and a Heavy Mortar Team. They all start mounted on the edge of the table.

I’d suggest that in order to mover all these assets onto the table you would use 1 Battle Drill order.

Next turn you want the Heavy Mortar team to dismount from their MTLB and set up the mortar ready for action. You want the rest of the platoon (including the Fire Support and AGL sections to continue forward with the other BMPs). It costs you one order to dismount the Heavy Mortar Team and another order to move all the rest forwards again.

Each time you want any element of the platoon to do something different it costs you an additional order. If you want the mortar to fire while the rest of the platoon dismounts and then close assaults, it would cost you an order for the mortar fire controller (whoever that was) to call the fire, an order for the Heavy Mortar to fire, a Battle Drill order for the BMPs to move once and dismount the troops and another Battle Drill order for the troops to close assault.

Assuming you were just using the 3 BMPs with the infantry to conduct the assault, normally all this would cost 8 orders while using the Battle Drill system it takes 4 orders.

alicks wrote:Especially if you are trying to call in mortar support, using two platoons, and maneuvering a tank platoon on an average of 4-5 order dice in a 600pt game (average of 3 or 4 rolled on 1d6 then FHQ +1).

this is not including recon units and engineering units which do not have the battle drill special rule.

i find in the games i have played so far that all it takes is one suppressed platoon leader and the entire army grinds to a halt due to lack of orders.

I suspect this will be made worse if battle drill will take up an order as well, i will play test with my gaming group and see.

Obviously I’m keen for as much feedback from playtesting as I can have. The most consistent feedback I’ve had thus far is that the Soviets have way too many orders available to them and it allows them to be so flexible they don’t really feel like Soviets.

Recently we had a large game using these new rules. We had 21 T-64Bs and 10+ BMPs, 2 x Shilkas, Armoured FO, a couple of recce units and 3 guns off table. For all that we got by with 2D6+3 orders plus 5 officers without any real issues.

I guess I need to test it for a smaller game where you may have fewer officers and perhaps more “independent” units.

Something to have a go at anyway.

Thanks

Richard

alicks
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Location : UK

Re: New Orders Rules and Special Rules

on Mon Apr 23, 2018 11:34 am
Hi Richard thanks for the reply, that helps with how to approach it.

you may need to write that into the Orders Rules though as it states currently if one unit does something different then the whole platoon has to take orders separately. So the rules as written currently would be mortar team wants to dismount so the other 4 bmp2 in the unit (for example) would have to move separatley at one order each using 4 orders (5 including the mortar dismount).

Also you may need to add Close Assault to the order list, as it is currently not on there. As it is written currently, if you wish to do a Close Assault then the whole platoon has to take separate orders as described above.

As said in my last post the 3 games i have played at 600pts so far the average order total has been 4 or 5 orders per turn including the FHQ's +1 for senior officer. The lists run so far only include Platoons and no Companies due to lack of points (2x BMP2 Platoons and 1x T64B platoon, along with recce units and command units.)

cheers

Alex
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Re: New Orders Rules and Special Rules

on Mon Apr 23, 2018 2:33 pm
A total of 3 platoons would make it a company-sized game though, so we would use 3d6 plus officers - you should be rolling around 10+ officers orders on average each turn. Even at platoon level you would roll 2d6 + officers, so on average should expect around 7+ officers per turn. To get such low orders rolls, you seem to be rolling a single d6 (squad level game) or your dice need to be crushed into a powder and flushed down the nearest convenience.

Cheers, Andy
alicks
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Re: New Orders Rules and Special Rules

on Mon Apr 23, 2018 6:21 pm

Hi Andy

Are you talking about Nato or Warpact orders?

In a company size game Warpact would be getting 1D6+3 and then adding senior officers only.

As per the new orders pdf.

Nato would be getting 3D6 + all officers like you say though.

cheers

Alex
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Re: New Orders Rules and Special Rules

on Mon Apr 23, 2018 6:40 pm
Hi Alex,

You're right, NATO would be averaging 10 or so plus officers. However, even at 1d6 + 3 for Soviets, you have a better than 60% chance of getting at least 6 orders per turn and always between 4 and 9. To get just 4 or 5 orders, the dice would need to be consistently rolling 1's and 2's, hence the grinding suggestion. Even so, IIRC, battle drill now doesn't need an order for all subunits in a unit to do the same thing, so in your example of 2 BMP platoons and 1 platoon of T-64s, each platoon can activate, as long as the components all do the same thing, for free, and there is a guarantee of being able to order 4 subunits independently, up to a maximum of 9 if a 6 is rolled. Again, IIRC, it has been suggested that infantry dismounts should have a separate dismount command so that the BMPs and infantry can operate separately from each other with the BMPs forming a Bronngruppe (?spelling).

Cheers, Andy
alicks
Posts : 21
Join date : 2018-04-03
Location : UK

Re: New Orders Rules and Special Rules

on Mon Apr 23, 2018 9:53 pm
Hi Andy

Maybe that is the solution to the problem.

We have been playing our games at Platoon level, as the maximum points for such games is 750pts according to the Battlegroup rule book .

At Platoon Level the soviets in Northag only get a straight D6 orders + senior officers per turn. hence the averaging 4-5 orders per turn.



@Richard: Please see my comments in reply to your lats post above, r.e. the Assault order

thanks

Alex
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RichardC
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Re: New Orders Rules and Special Rules

on Thu Apr 26, 2018 11:00 pm
Hi guys

Thanks for the ongoing discussion/commentary/questions on these new orders and special rules.  Basically it looks like I need to do Version 3 ! Also I should not have used the Close Assault example above as like you pointed out Alex, it's not currently an option for using Battle Drill and on further thought I don't think it should be due to game mechanics.  Each squad should be activated, test for close assault and undertake the close assault separately - rather than as 1 platoon sized unit.

I guess I think of Battle Drill in terms similar to Ura! Ura! in standard Battlegroup.  You have the core platoon elements (let's say 3 BMP-1s fromt he previous example).  They are the primary units that the Battle Drill rules apply to.  If one of those 3 BMP-1s needs to do something different - the whole platoon loses the Battle Drill option.

Support units like the AGL section, Fire Support Section or the Heavy Mortar Team are not core platoon elements, but I think they should be able to benefit from Battle Drill like similar Soviet WW2 platoon support units can benefit from Ura! Ura! to move.  I think a simple line similar to what is written in Ura! Ura! would help clear up what I'm trying to get at.

So if the BMP-1 platoon outlined above is moving forward - any platoon support units within LOS of the Platoon Leader can be "caught up" by Battle Drill to move forward.  If any of those platoon support units want to drop out and do something different, this does not affect the core platoon's Battle Drill status, or any other platoon support units that wish to remain with the core platoon moving forwards.

So I'll correct the example I gave early.

Let’s say you have taken a BMP-1 Platoon and have also taken a Fire Support Section, an AGL Section and a Heavy Mortar Team. They all start mounted on the edge of the table.

I’d suggest that in order to mover all these assets onto the table you would use 1 Battle Drill order. (This is essentially for the core platoon, but you can drag the platoon support units along with you)

Next turn you want the Heavy Mortar team to dismount from their MTLB and set up the mortar ready for action. You want the rest of the platoon (including the Fire Support and AGL sections to continue forward with the other BMPs). It costs you one order to dismount the Heavy Mortar Team and another order (Battle Drill) to continue move all the rest forwards again.  (As the MTLB and Heavy Mortar are not part of the core platoon, dropping them off does not kill Battle Drill for the rest of the core platoon or stop the other two units from being dragged along).

Each time you want a support element of the platoon to do something different it costs you an additional order. If you want the mortar to fire while the rest of the infantry dismounts and then moves and fires, it would cost you an order for the mortar fire controller (whoever that was) to call the fire, an order for the Heavy Mortar to fire, a Battle Drill order for the BMP-1s to move once and dismount the troops and another Battle Drill order for the troops to move and fire.

For arguments sake if in the next turn you want the motor rifle infantry to close assault, you might order the BMP-1s (using Battle Drill) to try and suppress the enemy and then have each of the three squads separately close assault their targets in turn.  This would cost 1 order for the BMP-1s and 3 orders for the close assaults.

I hope all that makes things a bit clearer

Richard
alicks
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Re: New Orders Rules and Special Rules

on Fri Apr 27, 2018 8:57 am
Hi Richard

Thanks for the clarification. Makes it much clearer now.

I agree Assault should not be a drill because of the same reasons you stated, just too fiddly.

Thanks for putting this together.

Alex
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Re: New Orders Rules and Special Rules

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