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 Post subject: Alternative to embedded melee system
PostPosted: Tue Jan 25, 2005 9:50 am 
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Joined: Wed May 23, 2001 2:56 pm
Posts: 112
Location: USA, New Jersey, Ocean County
The embedded melee system is the topic of two other current posts - one seeking proposals for a name and the other related to comparing HPS Gettysburg to BG Gettysburg.

I have an alternative house rule to address the the "blitzkrieg assault" issue. I think it is much easier to implement and addresses most, but not all of the issues I have heard raised.

The rule is:

"A formed unit can not move through (or out of) a hex containing a unit that has already meleed."

For ACW that means all units, in the Nap titles this would still allow skirmisher movement through such hexes.

Effectively it prevents you from creating a narrow hex path behind your opponent with successive melees, but does not prevent such a move by creating a 3+ wide hex path to the enemy's rear, with successive melees.

I've tried this in two Nap games, so there is not a lot of practical experience but it seems to work well and is fairly easy to remember. It also has the benefit that you can move, fire, melee your units in any sequence you wish.

I'd be interested in any comments or questions.

Lt Gen Bob Breen
Commanding 4th Bde, 2nd Div, VI Corps, AoS
"Where we lead, the Army follows" - VI Corps


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 25, 2005 12:59 pm 
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Joined: Wed May 23, 2001 4:59 pm
Posts: 133
Location: USA
Not sure what you mean by "a hex containing a unit that has already meleed". The problem is not so much hexes CONTAINING units, it's the hexes where a ZOC existed and then the ZOC is not there anymore because the parent unit has been shoved back in melee.

It is very frustrating to have a flood of enemy units go to your rear because ONE formerly ZOC hex has been cleared....and of course most of those flooding units are in column.

Gen. Doug Burke
XX/AoC/USA


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jan 25, 2005 2:15 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 22, 2001 4:46 pm
Posts: 564
Location: Canada
Gentlemen,

The answer is defense in depth. Rarely was everything put up front which tends to be the case in these games. How many of you have put everyone in front with nothing but leaders and wagons in the rear. Follow the principles of war and you will be rarely surprised and defeated, multi, single phases etc.

The real defect in these games is the ability to move everyone were you want to or at least to the maximum of their movement capabilities and this includes routed units and their facing. How many of you have face-routed units to take advantage of their un-rout position during the next phase?

I have no solution just an observation as to the real issue at hand. These are games not recreation of civil war tactics or war.

Single phase or multi phase there is a solution within the game system. Defense in depth, apply it and no one will be able to surround your army, perhaps a couple of units but not battle winning.

To those who want to simulate the tactics, I have no problem with your ideas and solutions, but they are reactions to the ability to move everyone with GOD like ability. My preference is to play the system, and see if the opponent can get past the 'historical' moves which if you think about it are the bane of most leaders, they cannot adapt to innovative tactics (play). I am sure the French and the British would have created rules to deter the Germans bltizkrieging through the Ardennes and the use of combined arms. Learn the game, and if it is a good one, enjoy it. The HPS and TS games are pretty good, but they can never recreate war or ACW war. The same goes for the Napoleonic series. Not to say they cannot be improved.

Multi or single is not better both are unrealistic it is matter of preference that is it.

I remember being accused of all I know to do is surround and eliminate. I say if you want to pretend that while you are deploying the enemy will be watching and grading you for form then kudos.

Of course this my opinion and goes with the idea that you should find opponents that are compatible with your views of play, and it is play.

I think that there are different levels of knowledge between players. The great thing about these game it is not just about who knows how to manipulate the system, although that is a big advantage, it also about rewarding those who know how to maneuver and bring the about a battle to their advantage. The tactics about destroying an opponent’s regiment is secondary. If you are out of position and your opponent knows it you lost.

What is good about this club is that we have all types.



Best Regards,

General Pierre D.
CSA Reserve Corps


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2005 6:02 am 
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Joined: Wed May 23, 2001 2:56 pm
Posts: 112
Location: USA, New Jersey, Ocean County
To reply to Doug Burke's comment:

<i>Not sure what you mean by "a hex containing a unit that has already meleed". The problem is not so much hexes CONTAINING units, it's the hexes where a ZOC existed and then the ZOC is not there anymore because the parent unit has been shoved back in melee.

It is very frustrating to have a flood of enemy units go to your rear because ONE formerly ZOC hex has been cleared....and of course most of those flooding units are in column.</i>

--------

I do not place any restrictions on the order you do moves, fires, melees. So if you are moving units you can not move a formed unit through (or out of) a hex that contains another of your units that has meleed.

Now as Bill points out this does not solve every situation where a blitzkrieg breakthrough can occur. And as Pierre points out defense in depth is the real answer. But it does stop a number of situations and it is relatively simple to implement.

I personnally will adapt my play for any set of rules, and in general I don't like a lot of house rules -- at my age each game with house rules ends up with a post it note on my terminal to remind me what I agreed to! I also prefer a somewhat historical game and this is one area that I think the ACW titles have an issue in some scenarios, not so much with breakthroughs but with unrealistic assaults on those high point guns that might be a few hexes behind the front lines.

On the topic of reducing the time represented by a a turn. I am not a fan of this for email games. I think the "calendar time" it takes to complete a game will increase, since players have to process more turns. For real time or "hot seat" games such a change might even be a plus, since it will make things more "real time".




Lt Gen Bob Breen
Commanding 4th Bde, 2nd Div, VI Corps, AoS
"Where we lead, the Army follows" - VI Corps


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2005 6:56 am 
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Joined: Fri Jun 11, 2004 10:00 am
Posts: 444
Location: USA
Gentlemen,

The proposed defense of two lines deep makes for a very compact line of defense. The problem arises when your opponent then simply surrounds your forces and takes advantage of the isolation rule to destroy them. On two occasion in HPS games, I have had strong defensive position (at the division level) surrounded and destroyed in this manner. All it takes is cavalry lightly spread out to your rear. While I am on it, what is the histroical justification for the isolation rule? Why would my troops fight at half strenth because they are surrounded, some may even fight harder. I could see if they were out of amunition they may surrender. Considering playing with out the isolation rule in the future....... and then use a double defensive line.......

Col. Joe Mishurda



Joe Mishurda, The Cast Iron Division
2nd Div. XXV Corp, AoJ


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