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Speeding up combat

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Speeding up combat

Post  mi98c10 on Thu Sep 03, 2015 10:39 am

I've seen where several of you when you run kriegsspiel that to keep the game moving you take 10 minute turns. How does combat work? How do you speed it up?

mi98c10

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Re: Speeding up combat

Post  Martin on Thu Sep 03, 2015 12:01 pm

Hello

We normally don't use the Reisswitz combat mechanisms. They were no doubt accurate (or at least perceived to be), but were developed primarily for the education of young officers in a training exercise. It was therefore important to track both the detailed process, using 2-minute increments, and also the results of actions in terms of casualties. I’m sure this was instructive, and of course there were plenty of other young officers on-call to be extra umpires and handle the admin.

But it doesn’t make for a very good game. The admin burden is too great for the umpires, it’s too slow for the players, and the detailed tracking of casualties is not something that would have been available during the battle.

So we typically use longer turns – actually 15 or 20 minutes is more common for a typical Reisswitz detachments game. For combat resolution we use either a boardgame-type dice and combat results table approach, or just ‘free kriegsspiel’ it, with the umpires making a decision based on odds, terrain and any other relevant factors. The key thing is that combat resolution must be quick. Otherwise, you can have a fascinating situation in the umpire room as you all work through a detailed combat sequence, but outside the players are sitting on their hands as the game has ground to a halt.

Hope that helps, but keep asking questions if I haven’t given you what you need.

Martin (J)

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Re: Speeding up combat

Post  mi98c10 on Thu Sep 03, 2015 10:40 pm

I do agree with combat slowing things down. When I ran kriegsspiel at GenCon there would be one combat (minor skirmish) and except for the two players who units fought, the other players never saw anything. I was thinking about using the combat table in Strategos with an option I saw in an old issue of Minature Wargames (the issue that told me how to contact Bill Leeson and order Kriegsspiel in the first place) were you roll and can re roll up to your odds. Ie at 2 to 1 the larger force could re roll once but must take the final result. It was suppose to show of committing extra troops to an faltering attack.

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Re: Speeding up combat

Post  Martin on Thu Sep 03, 2015 11:02 pm

Yes, I sometimes use the Strategos combat table myself. I think it works particularly well for 1860s/70s games. Not surprising, as the rules were developed in America in the wake of the ACW.

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