Tactical Core

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- Turn Sequence -


< from Tactical Foundations: Organisation

 

Turn Organisation

The core rules covers battles between two opposing armies, each army is controlled by a single Player. The game is a battle between two players each controlling an army represented by miniatures (or markers) on a field of battle represented by a game table. This WarSpike system does not use the usual rigid turn system found in many traditional wargames; instead it goes for simultaneous resolutions where both sides move together. This would normally be quite (very) unwieldy, and to get around this obstacle WarSpike divides the battle into smaller bite sized (and temporary) mini-battles. Each mini-battle is resolved in series, until all the units of both armies have taken part, then the turn ends and the next starts.

 

Design Notes on the problems with the Traditional Turn

Duplicate Blog entry on the Turn Sequence for feedback

 

Turn Time

Each game turn represents approximately 30 seconds of time of the battle (battle time). Battle time is how fast time ia progressing in the reality of the game. In the real world is can take much longer to resolve a turn than 30 seconds.

 

A turn is enough time for a unit in close formation to cover 50 yards (10 per 10 seconds, or one meter per second) using the Quick March (see military step) of 120 beats per minute with a stride of 30". This works out at 300' per minute/ 100 yards per minute (note: Augmented rules cover formation collapse)

 

Getting Started

The basic idea of concept; The Player picks one of their units to activate. This active unit then targets an enemy unit. The two units fight and casualties are removed. The Player then picks another unit to activate... And so on and so forth. This basic idea was expanded into;

 

Summery (Of basics)

  • Flip a coin; the winner become the Instigator, the looser becomes the Retaliator.
  • The Instigator picks one of their units to activate. The active unit is then assigned an action. The Retaliator may then activate a unit to counter.
  • In the case of attacks, where a specific unit of the Retaliator is targeted, the Retaliator has to activated that targeted unit to perform a counter. In the case of movement, the Retaliator may chose to counter, by moving directly towards the Instigators unit (or heading them off at their perceived objective), or attacking them as they move.
  • The action and counter are then work out together. This is simultaneous.
  • Only these two units are taking part, all other units are ignored (for now).
  • Once everything between these two units has been worked out, the Instigator picks another of their units to activate... and so on, until all of the Instigator's units have performed and action (and most of the Retaliators).
  • Finally the Retaliator may move any units then have not performed a counter, however the Retaliator may not target any other unit (If the Retaliator wanted them to target on of the Instigators unit they should have declared it as a counter!)
  • This basic turn system can be expanded upon to provide more options, such as moving multiple units as 'Blocks' or combining the firepower of several units onto one target unit.

This is the basic idea of how the turn work, the following is a detailed description of the rules, followed by rules for further expansions of the turn system;

 

Turn Sequence

The fist thing to dom is find out who's who. Flip a coin. The winner of the toss may elect to be the Instigator or pass. If the winner passes, the looser then has the option to become the Instigator or pass. If both pass, a turn is struck off and the coin flipped again. This can continue indefinitely until one side commits or until all the turns of the game are struck off resulting in a draw.

 

Once a player elects to become the Instigator their opponent automatically becomes the Retaliator. There are advantages and disadvantages to both, which will come to light after playing a few games, but generally the Instigator is aggressive, and the Retaliator defensive with the intent on holding ground or counter-charging.

 

Note: In the augmented rule set specific scenarios will state which army is the Instigator and which is the Retaliator.

 

1: Instigator

The Instigator chooses one unit in their army and designates it as the current active unit. An Action is then assigned to this active unit. The active unit may only perform one Action in a turn. Actions are;

 

The Instigator picks one unit within their army and choose an action for that unit. More on Actions and the details thereof can be found here: Tactical: Actions.

 

Options

  • Move: In any direction up to the units Stature stat x move rate.
  • Shoot: At any targets within the fire arc and line of sight.
  • Engage: In Close Combat with any troops in base to base contact
  • Special: See specials.

 

When the active unit's action is selected, proceed to step 2.

 

2: Retaliator

Once the Instigator has chosen their action, the Retaliator chooses a Reaction for their target unit in response. The Retaliator may not target any of The Instigator's other units. Reactions include;

 

Options

  • Move: Directly towards the Instigator's active unit.
  • Shoot: At the Instigator's active unit.
  • Engage: In Close Combat with the Instigator's active unit.
  • Special: Using a 'Special' against the Instigator's active unit, or on your own unit

 

Each of the Retaliators units may only make one Reaction in a turn.

 

3: Resolution

Both the action and reaction are resolved together, the two opposing units/ Blocks are worked out as a Paired-Resolution. This is very much like fighting a 'mini-battle' within the larger battle. This mini-battle is resolved in isolation from the rest of the battle.

 

In the diagram opposite I1 and R1 are locking in a Resolution-Pair. The actions and reactions are worked out together. This allows for some interesting effects on the game table.

 

For example, is both I1 and R1 were on opposite sides of a bridge, and are both an equal distance: If I1 chose a run Action to get them to the bridge and R2 chose a run Reaction to head them off, both would meet in the middle - at the bridge.

 

Information on Resolutions

 

4: Next Activation

Once the Retaliator has finished resolving their Reactions, the Instigator's currently active unit is deactivated and the Instigator may choose the next unit in their army to become the next active unit and perform an action. Return to step one, but the Instigator may only pick from their units that have not performed an Action so far.

 

Each Paired-Resolution is worked out one at a time. The diagram opposite shows a nice neat series, but there is no specific order the Paired-Resolutions have to be resolved.

 

In the opposite diagram I1 is paired with R1, which is worked out first. Then both Player move onto the next Resolution-Pair containing I2 and R2. Once this is resolved both Players move onto the last Resolution-Pair containing I3 and R3.

 

5: Changeover - seizing the advantage

Once the Instigator has no more units to activate, and all Resolution-Pairs have been resolved, the Retaliator may move any final Units. These last Units may not target an Unit, and can only move, hide or prepare in some way. Once all the Units have been used, it is time to calculate who will have the Advantage next turn. Advantage determines who will be the Instigator next turn.

 

Clause: In some battles it can be impossible for one side to become the Instigator, for example if all the units are under hold orders. There must be at least one unit who can advance in order for that side to become the Instigator. Otherwise those with hold orders do just that and 'hold' and react to attacks.

 

//Rough: The side with the most units moving forward has the Advantage and becomes (or remains) in the instigator the next turn. Units which have been broken and are routing or units that are falling back and retreating count towards the opposing player moving forward total. Units which have not moved do not affect the total. if both sides have the same total then it is considered a stalemate and advantage is worked out as if it was a fresh game (i.e. roll for initiative!)

 

Units which are destroyed, which leave no one to rout and count towards the the total, are considered to have routed. Or, as part to psychology, seeing those die may scare or inspire. So units who are wiped out count as zero - they have not moved! However, what a destroyed unit will do is force a psychology test, and nearby units will 'fight or flight'. On rare occasion those who 'flee' have no where to run, and become panicked.//

 


 

Turn Sequence with 'Blocks'

The WarSpike turn is fully backward compatible with the traditional way of doing things. You can switch to a traditional type of turn at any time, even half way through a game, via the use of Blocks. This allows you to divide up a large battle of hundreds of units into Pair-Resolutions of two units or mix it up as you see fit and group units into Blocks and then pair up the Blocks. WarSpike is highly flexible.

 

Blocks: In the diagram opposite the Instigator has grouped I1 and I2 together to form a Block.

 

In military terms this replicates how units are practically grouped for warfare. For example, I1 and I2 could each be 4 man 'Fireteams' and, if following the British Army's organisation, combined into a Block to form a 'Section'. Further; 3 Sections could be combined into a Block to form a 'Platoon'.

 

In Ancient warfare, I1 and I2 could be two Contubernia (8 men) within a Roman Centuria combining their efforts and moving as one. The Contubernia is similar to the modern day Section in the British Army, both have 8 men (in the US this would be similar to a squad). 10 Contubernia make a Centuria, a Cohort is 6 Centuria.

 

The benefit of WarSpike is that this grouping is arbitrary, mirroring reality, and the Player can set up several Blocks how they desire. Blocks are resolved as single units using 'Paired-Resolutions'.

 

1: Instigator

The Instigator chooses one unit in their army and designates it as the current active unit. An Action is then assigned to this active unit. The active unit may only perform one Action in a turn. Actions are;

 

The Instigator picks one unit within their army and choose an actions for that unit.

 

Options

  • Move: In any direction up to the units Stature stat x move rate.
  • Shoot: At any targets within the fire arc and line of sight.
  • Engage: In Close Combat with any troops in base to base contact
  • Special: See specials.

Blocks: Although only one unit can be activated at a time, any number of adjacent units may 'follow the leader' and move in formation as a Block. All the units move as a block count as a unit for the purposes of the rules. In the diagram opposite, I1 and I2 have been combined by the Instigator into a Block and both target R1.

 

When the active unit's action is selected, proceed to step 2.

 

2: Retaliator

Once the Instigator has chosen their action, the Retaliator chooses a Reaction for their target unit in response. The Retaliator may not target any of The Instigator's other units. Reactions include;

 

Options

  • Move: Directly towards the Instigator's active unit.
  • Shoot: At the Instigator's active unit.
  • Engage: In Close Combat with the Instigator's active unit.
  • Special: Using a 'Special' against the Instigator's active unit, or on your own unit.

Blocks: The Retaliator may also choose any number of their units to 'help out' a targeted unit and form their own Block in response. Continuing the Block example from step 1 above, the Retaliator has combined R1, R2 and R3 into a Block to counter the Instigator's Block.

 

Notice: The Instigator may not modify their Block during step 2 in response to the Retaliator's choice of Block formation. Once the instigator has chosen their Block is is fixed for the purposes of the Resolution-Pair.

 

Each of the Retaliators units may only make one Reaction in a turn.

 

3: Resolution

Both the action and reaction are resolved together, the two opposing units/ Blocks are worked out as a Paired-Resolution.

 

In the diagram opposite I1 and R1 are locking in a Resolution-Pair. The actions and reactions are worked out together. This allows for some interesting effects on the game table.

 

For example, is both I1 and R1 were on opposite sides of a bridge, and are both an equal distance: If I1 chose a run Action to get them to the bridge and R2 chose a run Reaction to head them off, both would meet in the middle - at the bridge.

 

Blocks: The blocks are resolved as a Resolution-Pair. In the diagram opposite I3 is completely ignored until the two blocks have been resolved. I3 plays no part in the resolution between the blocks. Further I3 may not target R1, R2, or R3 when it is activated by the Instigator (if the Instigator wanted I3 to take part they should have added it to their Block!)

 

Note: In the Core Rules, the Units within a Block have to perform the same Action/ Reactions. This is for simplicity's sake, but later the Block can perform 'Manoeuvres' where the Units can pick different options within a given Block, which are then applied together as a 'set piece'.

 

Design Notes: In the 'RPG' this is how Players can have their Avatars form a Block in combat, and work as a Unit rather than individuals, all working under a Leader (and using the Leader's Mentality stat to resist fear etc.). This concept forms the rationale for the formation of Units that are used in Tactical. The Troops form around a Leader and follow their lead. They form a 'Block' of Troops which act as one, a single 'Unit'. Following through with this, Units can be combined into armies under the Leadership of a General (where the General imparts their Mentality to their Officers, who impart their Mentality to the Troops under their command).

 

Information on Resolutions

 

4: Next Activation

Once the Retaliator has finished resolving their Reactions, the Instigator's currently active unit is deactivated and the Instigator may choose the next Unit/ Block in their army to become the next active Unit/ Block and perform an action. Return to step one, but the Instigator may only pick from their Units that have not performed an Action so far (this included those who took actions as part of a Block).

 


 

Glossary

WarSpike uses some game specific terms as part of the rules. These terms can cause confusion as they are similar to regular words, and are therefore capitalised to denote them as a 'game term'.

 

Unit - A 'Military Unit'. A group of troops who are moved as one and work as a team. The are various sizes of unit, and they can be combined. i.e. two fire teams can be combined in a section, and a section can be split into two fire teams. 3 sections make a Platoon, etc.

 

Activation: The Unit a Player picks to perform an Action. Any unit that responds with a Reaction is also 'activated'. Only Activated Units take part in a Paired-Resolution.

 

The Instigator - The player that won the initiative and goes first. It is considered 'their turn' as they lead. As they lead their moves are considered Actions. The Instigator is always capitalised ('Instigator') when used as jargon and usually referred to as 'the Instigator' rather than 'an Instigator'.

 

Actions - The moves made by the Instigator, and is always capitalised ('Actions') when used as jargon.

 

The Retaliator - The player that lost the initiative and responds to the Instigators actions. As they are following the instigators lead, their counter moves are considered Reactions. Retaliator is always capitalised ('Retaliator') when used as jargon and usually referred to as 'the Retaliator' rather than 'a Retaliator'.

 

Reactions - The counter moves made by the Retaliator, and is always capitalised ('Reactions') when used as jargon.

 

Paired-Resolutions - The active unit (or Block) of the Instigator performing actions vs the active unit of the Retaliator performing reactions (counters). Both sides are resolved together.

 

Block - Several units grouped together to act as one (basically treating several units as one unit for the purposes of resolving turns).

 

Scenario - The set up, the background to the conflict and why the two armies are fighting. Some scenarios give time limits and objectives.


Tactical Core: Actions >


Copyright © Philip Sibbering 2007-2013. WarSpike™ is a Trademark of Philip Sibbering.

This file last modified 06/25/16