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Hi guys! I'm a little bit new here at LO, but I was hoping you could maybe help me out. I've been working on my own homebrew setting/game for a long time (mostly just the setting; only recently have I begun turning it into a wargame), but there are a few snags I've hit throughout the last few months of work.
My biggest problems have been taken care of by my friends, both real and at the Fear the Boot forums, but I feel I need some input from another group, which is why I'm here.
One of the things I've been thinking about is squad leaders, such as sergeants and such. Obviously they are going to cost more points, but I was wondering if they should be made mandatory (for verisimilitude; no squad goes into battle without a designated leader. There is always someone in command) or optional, because not all players want to spend their points on a squad leader. I like the idea of both, and I can't really decide.
Eventually, I'll post the rules (or host the file somewhere, and link to them), and I'd love to get some input on them, if anyone would like to help playtest. Unfourtunatly, there are no models built yet (I also need artists/modelers, though that won't be a while. I'll be back looking for a lot of tips on the business side of publishing a wargame later)
Any help or ideas you can provide would be grand. Even if you have some rules you think are cool,or ideas you'd like to see in a game, post 'em here if you're okay with me using them. I'll be sure to give you credit if it's an original idea.
First, for your sergeant rule: use the same program that GW had with their space marines. The squad comes standard with a "sergeant" who is just a guy with the exact same stat line. For a better stat-line, make them pay points for a "veteran" sergeant or something.
Furthermore, we could give you better responses if you told us what kind of setting you are running. Modern, postmodern, futuristic, the likes. There are tons of things I would like to see implemented in 'Future' games, and a couple of things I wouldn't mind seeing in Historical settings. So... yeah. Maybe give us a look at the rules, or give us the gist of what you want your game to achieve.
Dur, yeah. Setting is kind of important. But I totally knew that... yeah...
It's a sci-fi game, and I'm keeping the setting fairly 'hard science', with only a few exceptions, such as giving each team a unique super-science technology to differentiate them.
The four teams I currently have are these:
The Imperium Systema is a Roman-themed nation, the largest and most populous nation in the Galaxy, covering nine terraformed planets (A lot of the game is about fighting over the limited livable land, as terraforming is hard, costly, time-consuming, and is only possible on a limited number of planets). Their military is split between the regular military (the Militaris and Legions) and an equally large religious branch. They get a lot of alien weaponry, since the only currently know alien planet (they died out a long time ago) is within their space, so their scientists have access to alien research. They also make wide use of nanomachines.
The Proletariat Union de Mondes is a French/Russian/Spanish coalition of underdogs, united under a communist government. They don't get much in the way of technology, but they can field a larger number of infantry than other teams. They also use bio-engineering on their elite soldiers, since they don't have the resources to equip them with armour and weapons on par with the other nations. While other two human teams are violently religious, the Union is violently Atheist (much of the point of the game is that everyone is wrong; they are all extremists).
The other two teams I haven't fully fleshed out, but here's what I've got:
The Broken Houses is a nation embroiled in civil war. These Houses were part of the oldest nation in the galaxy, until it finally fell apart and left four successors battling for control. One of the houses has already been wiped out, and the other three are constantly at each others throats. I originally conceived them as being a Christian-themed team, with all the names changed to avoid offending anyone, but I'm thinking of making them out-and-out Christian, though I'm not sure of which denomination. Their 'super-tech' is invisibility and, to a lesser degree, alien tech.
The other team is the Digital Minds. Basically A.I.'s that, at one point, worked for Humanity (I know, robots rebelling! Original! But bear with me). However, about a century before the game takes place, when the Broken Houses, well, broke apart, it sparked a war that included all sides, and Digital Minds were used extensively (Usually as ship controllers, like most A.I.'s in sci-fi shows) until people on all sides of the war started developing viruses to take out the opposing sides D.M.'s, which sent them haywire and they ran off with whatever it was they were in control of (usually ships, including the crew, who were helpless to stop the D.M.'s that had taken control of their ships). The Digital Minds use teleportation as their super-tech, as well as nanomachines.
So yeah, those are the teams so far. As for rules, I'll post those next, just as soon as they stop being a jumble of notes. I've been working at organizing them into a coherent single document, so maybe a day or so and they'll be organized.
Last edited by john_alexander; May 23rd, 2009 at 22:13.
There is always a leader. They usualy better or more trained. Usually...
Without rules won`t be easy to tell any opinion.
If no models, then any drawings or graphics about them?
You can search for the "build by point" experimental rules here, I think it is too sofisticated, but definitely fair (no uber army and underdog) as in some other wargames. (which one?)
Business side: there is two main option:
- highly detailed, expensive, therefore not affordable for everyone
- cheaper, therefore more affordable, more gamers
Also, what size are we talking about? Big, 50-100 models per side in average battle or 20-50? How much can cost me a small army? Take gw prices.
I would make some alliens for the guys who does not like to play humans and a full woman army, they are always popular (SoB, escher gang, sisters of sigmar etc) Like overfeminist rebels who left the Earth and colonized a planet or something like that.
The imperium is very warhammer40k in my opinion. Spanish-russian? So what about between this two countries? i would not lost the sales on 70% of EU because they have no future in the game or a future that they won`t like, I would not use countries from the present. Just like GW: There is no country or origin, there are names: French name, Italian, German, Russian, but all mixed: no country has fututre, so no probs.
Same at the religion, why Christian? Why not ZEN? (Atheist... hmmm the russians were not atheist, only the politics.) I would drop this, or make up Your own future-religion.
Otherwise I admire the idea and I hope I will say in 5y time: Hey, I know this game, I talked to the guy who invented it!
So, good luck!
Yeah, the names I gave (other than Christianity) were just bases for me to start from. The Spanish-Russians are not literally Spanish and Russian, those are just there to set the names. This is why they are Atheist; they are not direct analogies of, say, communist Russia(though that's what they originally were. I may drop the Russian part to avoid the direct connection, and make the Spanish/French instead of Russian/Spanish/French)
Unfourtunatly, a lot of the Imperium names are going to overlap with the Imperium of Man from WH40K, because they both use Latin for naming conventions (though I'm using a lot more. There are no English names in the Imperium Systema; the 'Sergeants' are 'Principale' and so forth).
As for Christianity, I wanted something in there that people would recognize. I also realize that having Christians be wacky religious zealots might be taken as heavy-handed Christian-bashing (which I hate), and there is a difference between a Christian themed group of religious nutjobs (they are pretty much in every fantasy game) and actually having Christianity in my game. I may just have to make up another of my own religions. I've been trying to find a place to put in an animal-themed religion, which I was going to relegate to backstory. I guess I'll put them in as a playable team.
As for numbers, it seems to be pointing towards 40-60 models per side in an average battle.
And a lot of other present-day nationalities (German, Italian, Korean, Egyptian, Persian, etc.) are parts of the other teams, usually as auxiliaries, protectorates and small allies.
Oh, and another reason I wanted Christianity (and the reason the Imperium speaks Latin) was that, in the backstory, when the first Mars colonies were built, the Catholic church sent many missionaries, who, being Catholic, knew a lot more Latin than most. Eventually, it filtered into the common speech, and Latin became the language of Mars. And, as most colonies do, they eventually gained independence through war, and nuked Earth, exiling their enemies, who found new places to live and built their own empires. The two sides have a very old grudge to settle. Although, I suppose the animal-religion could just be the descendants of the exiles with a totally different religion, but the same grudge.
I too would stay away from Religious overtones. I had rules for a modern game that DID include religious fanatics (Radical Islam) and also played a game that revolved around the Crusades.
If you are trying to make a social commentary, I would just write a book. Take all of your awesome ideas and fluff and just tie it together into a SciFi novel. It's what I do when my mind starts running away with ideas for how to express an idea.
Why not switch the fanatical followers of Religion or Atheism, into different factions.
Radical Religion- faceless religion, just PO'ed by the movement away from tradition.
Deus Ex Machina- think the Ad.Mech. from 40K or the Illuminati in Angels and Demons.
Imperial- a unified federation of earth, the "mainstream" 90% of people.
The fluff would be simple really. The Imperial basically gains control over Earth, sends colonists out to other planets. Mars is colonized, gets their tech, decides to waste the Earth. The survivors of Earth leave to seek new places of refuge, maintaining their governing Empire. However some humans feel that the 'apocalypse' that befell Earth was a message from their god-figure, and a result of those on Mars becoming too distant from their ideal values. Therefore, they get mad, declare a crusade against Mars, and also against the Empire, since the Empire's retaliation "isn't good enough".
Okay, so no Christianity. The more I think about it, the worse an idea it seems (see? This is why I asked for input). And I'm not trying to make much of a political statement in the game (even my own political beliefs are portrayed as being just as wrong as everyone else). Besides, if I wanted to make political commentary, I'd write a book, as you mentioned. Much more effective.
Core rules to follow shortly. Sorry 'bout the wait.
Here are the core combat rules. Keep in mind that the game is being built with an RPG side-game, so there are a few places where the two overlap. I'll explain those as they come up, as these are just the wargame rules.
EDIT: I can`t believe I missed this VERY important part, but all skill rolls (and, by extension, attack rolls, as they are also skills) are trying to reach a Target Number of 6, after rolling and applying any modifiers.
Starting the Game: Each player rolls a Knowledge (Strategy and Tactics) skill, using their army's Leader. Whoever has the highest result has a slight advantage in deployment, as he gets to deploy his units second, responding to the opponent. Deployment is done one unit at a time, and the players trade off (first the loser of the Strategy roll deploys one unit, then the winner, so on until there are no units remaining). Units deploy in order of speed; slowest units first, then faster units, with the fastest units deploying last. Some units may be kept in reserve. The winner of the Strategy roll may then choose to take the first or second Action.
Actions: As with deployment, units undertake their actions one at a time, with the players trading off (to avoid one player getting a drastically good first turn, destroying their opponents chances before the game has even started rolling). Each Action consists of two Phases: Movement and Combat, undertaken in that order. Alternatively, a unit may forgo both Phases to undertake a Close to Melee, rushing their enemies to engage in hand-to-hand combat (Melee-oriented units are rare; only those who can afford/are given powerful armour can hope to survive long enough to make it into close-combat. It is considered a far more honorable method of war, however)
Movement: Units may move up to their Speed in the Movement Phase (usually 6" for infantry, sometimes more if they are equipped with special equipment, abilities, or Powered Armour. Some vehicles have even higher speeds)
Difficult terrain cuts speed in half (Rounded down; all fractions are, as a matter of convention), though only for the distance moved through the difficult terrain.
All members of any squad must be within 2" of any other member, in order to keep units together and in cohesion.
Combat: To make an attack, roll a d6 for every member of the squad attacking (subject to Line of Sight, below) and add their applicable modifier (Ranged or Melee attack skills) (It is best to use different colored dice to represent those with different weapons/different skill modifiers).
Allocating Hits: Each hit on the target squad must then be allocated to members of that squad by the defending player; he chooses where each hit goes. Each weapon has a Damage score, which is compared tot eh target models Damage Reduction and HP. If the damage of the allocated attack exceeds the targets DR and HP, the model is removed as a casualty. If the Damage exceeds the Damage Reduction, but not the HP, the model must make a Toughness skill roll. Success, and the model remains standing. Failure, and the model is removed as a casualty.
Attacks stack for overcoming DR, but not HP.
For example, if a series of three Dmg 2 attacks land on a model with DR 3 and HP 3, that unit must make two Toughness rolls; the first attack does not get through, the second stacks with the first and deals 1 Damage after stacking over the DR, setting off a Toughness roll, and the third attack is not enough to kill, forcing another Toughness roll.
If a model dies and still has unresolved hits allocated to it (if the defending player stacked multiple hits to that one model) they must then be allocated elsewhere within the squad.
Line of Sight: The first thing to do when attempting to make an attack is to make sure your squad has Line of Sight to the target by checking from the models points of view, assuming it`s not obvious. At least half of the target model must be visible in order to attack. If only part of your squad can see the target squad (or only part of the target squad), you may only make attacks with models which have Line of Sight. The defender may allocate hits to any model within the squad that can potentially be fired upon.
Disallowed Shooting: The following situations deny a model from firing, even if they have clear Line of Sight:
Models which have Piled Into a melee combat may not fire. Those still outside of the skirmish (See Close to Melee, below) may still fire as normal.
Models with Heavy weapons may not fire if they moved in the Movement Phase.
Concealment: Some situations will not break line of sight, but will still interfere with accuracy (dusk, fog, long grass, etc.). In these cases, any squad attacking another squad which is at least half in Concealment suffers a -1 penalty to attacks (A roll of 6 is always a hit, however, so low-skill models may still hit their targets).
Cover: Cover provides units with added Damage Reduction against attacks, as well as automatically granting Concealment as well. Regular Cover provides +2 DR, and Improved Cover adds 4. Units Closing to Melee against a squad in Cover also gains no Charge bonuses (see Close to Melee, below).
Special Weapon Attributes:
ANOTHER EDIT: Some special weapon attributes (such as suppression or rapid fire) have a number they need to beat on the die in order to activate (for example, 3+ Suppression means that the weapon suppresses on a 3, 4, 5 or 6 on the die). This is not effected by the models Melee or Ranged skill; only the number on the die matters.
Only certain weapons can pierce the heavy armour of a tank. If an Anti-Armour weapon hits a vehicle, and the total Attack roll is higher than the vehicles Armour Rating, the defender may roll 2d6 and compare to the Vehicle Hit Results table, above.
Artillery weapons fire in an arc, ignoring most cover and ignoring line of sight. When making an attack with an Artillery weapon, the attacker guesses the range to the target, within the maximum range of the weapon, and places a marker at that distance. The attacker then rolls two six-sided die separately, one for direction scattered, and the second for distance (in inches) scattered. If the attack roll was a miss, double the distance scattered.
2 – Away from attacking player
3 – Left
4 – Right
5 – Towards player
1 – Roll again, double distance scattered
6 – No scatter
When a weapon is doubled up, linked together to fire in tandem, it has a better chance of scoring a hit. If any Dual weapon misses its target, the player may roll again at the same bonus in an attempt to score a hit. Dual weapons do not deal any extra damage, nor do they get to fire two shots; they only get to re-roll a miss.
Some weapons cause explosions when they hit, and will cause damage to all those within the explosion radius. The explosion radius is represented by an Explosion Template, which the attacking (not defending) player may place above any model within the unit. Each whose base is mostly (more than half) under the template are hit, while those models whose bases are still covered, but less than half, are hit on a roll of 4+ by the attacker, rolled for each model partially hit.
Some Explosive weapons have a larger explosion radius. In this case, use the Large Explosion Template. These weapons are marked as ‘Explosive, L’ in order to save room on weapon profiles.
Some weapons fire in such a concentrated, rapid spray that units find it difficult to advance under such a hail of fire safely. Any unit that comes under attack from a Suppressing weapon that successfully Suppresses (see weapon profiles) moves at half speed in their next Movement Phase, as the unit keeps low to the ground to avoid being hit. If a unit wishes to move at full speed, the unit leader may make a Diplomacy roll in order to inspire his soldiers to ignore the spray of death.
Sidearm’s are small weapons, small enough to be used in melee. Sidearm weapons add their Damage to any melee attack made by a model wielding a sidearm.
Flame weapons automatically score d6 hits against any squad with at least half its models in range, and also have a Flush From Cover special attack: Any Flame weapon fired upon an enemy squad in cover ignores that cover, and either deals an extra d6 hits, or flushes the enemy squad out (defenders choice). If flushed out, the squad must move 2” backwards, away from cover, at the end of the flamers Action, putting it outside any cover until it gets a chance to move again.
Flame weapons that also have the Heavy Special Attribute gain access to another special attack: Wall of Fire. Instead of attacking an enemy squad, a model with a Flame weapon may lay down a wall of fire 6” long (this line must be entirely within the weapons range). All models, friend or foe, that cross this line suffers a hit at the weapons Damage.
These weapons may not be fired in the Combat Phase if any models in the unit moved during the Movement Phase, though other members of the unit may still fire.
Some weapons are especially deadly in close fighting, such as sub-machine guns and shotguns, but are less effective at range. Such weapons gain an extra attack if the enemy unit being fired upon is within 10m.
Xeno Weapons are what comes out of military fields of research into the Xeno technologies. Xeno weapons ignore DR from all sources except Cover.
Some vehicles have their main weapon mounted on a turret, allowing it to fire in any direction, as opposed to Forward Mounted Weapons, below.
Forward-Mounted Weapons can only fire in a 45-degree arc in front of the vehicle.
Sponson weapons are weapons mounted on the side of a vehicle, usually for repelling infantry. These weapons may only fire in a 90-degree arc on the side of the vehicle to which they are mounted.
Plasma Torch only applies to Melee weapons. Small holes on the blade side of the weapon release plasma when a trigger is pulled, allowing the weapon to ignore all DR (EDIT: As well as act as an Anti-Armour weapon).
Close to Melee: Instead of taking a Movement and Combat Phase during their action, a squad may instead Close to Melee; it may move its Speed and engage the target squad in melee.
Charging: A unit that is Closing to Melee gets a Charge bonus of +1 to their attack roll, deal 1 extra Damage on all attacks. When charging, place members of the charging squad as close to the target models as can be managed, so that the bases are touching if possible. If the defending unit has Cover, then no Charge bonuses are given.
Units in Melee: All units within 2” of the skirmish line (where the two bases of the members of the units meet) are considered to be in melee, and may make their attacks as usual. Units outside of this zone are too far away, and must ‘Pile In’ on their next available Movement Phase. All units that are in the melee (within 2” of the skirmish line) may not fire their ranged weapons. However, units not in melee may choose to fire their weapon after any Pile In attempts have been made (see below).
Piling In: Units outside of the 2 melee zone must ‘Pile In’, moving up to 6 in an attempt to join the fight. If there is not enough room to go straight through, they will attempt to go around the side in order to attack.`
Being Outnumbered: If your squad is outnumbered by any amount in Melee, you suffer a -1 penalty to Diplomacy (used for leadership). If your squad is outnumbered 2-1 or worse, you must make a Diplomacy check at the beginning of the Action. Failure means your unit Retreats (see below).
Retreat!: Sometimes, a squad just has a run of bad luck and is forced to fall back, or even retreat entirely.
Falling Back: A unit that is Falling Back moves its full speed towards the nearest table edge in an attempt to escape a bad situation, though they will avoid enemy units if possible, staying 2" away from enemy models. The unit will continue to Fall Back until it the unit leader makes a Diplomacy roll. The leader suffers a -1 penalty if the unit was fired upon by the enemy since its last turn, and an additional -1 if any enemy is within 6" at the start of the Movement Phase.
To avoid Falling Back, the unit leader must make a Diplomacy roll to keep the unit under control. The following things force a roll:
Taking more than ¼ of the remaining members of the squad in casualties in one turn from shooting
Losing more than ½ of the remaining members of the squad in casualties during Melee combat
Certain special attacks
Being outnumbered 2-to-1 or worse in Melee.
Falling Back From Melee: When falling back from a Melee, the enemy squad gets to make a free Melee attack against your squad (your soldiers are turning tail and running, leaving themselves open).
Retreat: If a unit reaches the edge of the table, they have Retreated, and are lost. Treat this unit as a casualty.
Skills: Skills are rolled in the same way Attacks are. In fact, Melee and Ranged Weapon are both skills. There is, however, a difference between the two. When making attacks with the Weapon skills, you use each individual models skill, but when rolling regular skills, such as Perception or Diplomacy, you use the highest in the unit.
I think that's everything. If there are any questions or if I miss anything, I'll post another reply. Tomorrow, I'll put up unit types and special rules regarding them, as well as armour.
Last edited by john_alexander; May 28th, 2009 at 22:32.
I quite like this. It feels a lot like 40k, but it also fixes several of the things which I percieve as "errors". You make the rules play more quickly and seemingly more smoothely, but you also allow space for tons of variance between the armies. I'm guessing that Damage on a weapon is operating in place of strength? Where a heavy machinegun might be Dmg3 while a pistol is likely only Dmg1?
I quite like this mechanic in particular. Good idea!
CHRISTIANITY ------------------Frank Herbert`s DUNE ------------------ WARHAMMER 40K
SAVIOUR Jesus ------------- Muad`dib ------------------God-Emperor
DISCIPL. Apostles ------------------Fedaykins ------------------ Primarch
DEATH Crucified ------------------ Blinded ------------------ Wrecked
RETURN Self ressurection------------Survived the desert -------------Lives in Gold Throne
TRAITOR Judas ------------------Dr. Yuri ------------------ Horus
SPECIAL Son of the God ------------------True seer, no bounds---------------The light in the warp
WAR Crusades ------------------Jihad ------------------Great Crusade
They all have these aspects, plus all has followers, their own religion, church that built on them.
I guess it will be enough if You will make Your own messiah, like Ceaser Deus, Caesar Maximus, if You will follow the main things, but give different names, different historical time, everything gonna be all right.
Maybe the Mars had no missionaries but they had a religion that was born somehow and turned to be true. The Messiah of Mars. It also can give You a reason, like the filthy unbeleivers of the Earth or something like that.
Same with the politics:
Orwell`s 1984 has three factions, and they are including the former countries, but they have other names then Historical, like Oceania.
Even can be a good reason that the factions of the Earth terrorized the Mars that fought for its freedom for long time, and one day the messiah arrived and freed the planet.
What do You think?
So You can have the Imperium, the "Atheists", the Fundamentalists without being political incorrect.
PS.: I do not know how the heart appeared in the title...