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roadkizzle

Opinions and Thoughts on 2.0

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This past Friday I was able to finally get a small 1000 point game of 2.0 in with my friend who had received his Iron Scorpion box earlier on in the week. I finally received mine yesterday and was able to get a complete read-through of the rules. I'd like to post some of my initial thoughts on the changes that have been made through the main rules, and I'm going to try to divorce my thoughts on how the forces themselves work until I'm able to do some playtesting to see if my initial thoughts stand up to scrutiny.

 

Overall I do think that the changes for V2 are positive.

 

In my first game we decided to just use a standard deployment and avoid objectives to just get a handle on the actual unit interactions, but I'm excited about using the scenario generator and battle log.

 

I liked the Morale rules more, we didn't really end up getting shaken markers until our units were already dead and useless but I will be paying attention to that into the future.

 

Movement and Shooting didn't really change all that much but I do like the LoS from the center of the base because it makes it less subjective, but I don't think I saw the rules saying when a model gets a cover dice if some models in the  shooting unit can get a clear attack while others can't. The difficult terrain just restricting models from moving At the Double is nice. Makes it to where it's easier to get into a firing position through forests although if a unit is 4" from a forest they'll only be able to get 2" in now while they would have been able to get 8" into the terrain before. In general though this change is much more simple and provides more benefit than pain points so I like it.

 

We didn't try melee but I'll report on that after I play against my EotBS friend or do my solo game with my Prussians. In general though my impressions are positive in that regards although I would have liked the option for infantry to disengage even if it's more penalizing then cavalry/aeronauts disengaging. If they automatically took a melee attack against them while the faster units had a chance to avoid the attack would have been positive I think.

 

But my biggest takeaway from the game may have to do with playing FSA but it may be more general, but I really did not care for my officer. I used the Focus Fire ability twice, which was fairly nice, but other than that he just really did nothing except provide a great firebase and keep my morale checks at 3 dice like back in 1.0. At this point I would have preferred just having 3 dice morale checks because there was just never any worry about running out of CP for me because all of the orders were useless, and with only one TAC per 250 points I wasn't able to cycle through them fast like I did in 1.0 in an attempt to actually get an advantage for my FSA.

 

I really think that adding more options for orders is needed, because currently Focus Fire was the only one that had a decent use. I had to wait until I got my book to check if I played poorly, but Form Line, On My Mark, the two rally orders, disengage were all useless and I felt I was better off with using my activations to keep my two firebases working separately. 

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Did you use the With Me order?

 

The Senior Commanding Officer can also be pouring Command Points into the turn's initiative roll (and morale of course - but that doesn't sound like it came up much!), both of which I'm sure you knew! :)  Did you use those options much?

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I didn't use the With Me order as I said. I didn't because I was testing out a militia infantry HMG section which was the only one within CMD range of my officer, and I felt the 17AD both sections were pumping out individually was better used in separate activations to put more pressure on my opponent. I did boost my initiative at first but the game wouldn't have gone any differently if I had continued.

 

My opinion may change with bigger games, but until they get massive I'm just going to be adding Orlington so I won't actually be getting any use out of CP. 

 

Basically from how my game went it just seems that NCOs do nothing more than boosting Morale checks or using Snap out of it, so it just seems like the game would have been better off with easier Morale mechanics and either no CP or useful orders.

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I got a similar feeling with my first game; a lot of the NCO command points simply did not get used, and my officer spent most of his time either pumping command points into the initiative roll, or shoring up the morale of my militia Landwehr.

Focus Fire might be usable if you have a senior NCO, but it is very uncertain (and you have to use Flash of Inspiration to be sure to get it off, which means that it's a once a game kind of thing).

 

Basically, I'm not sure what to do with all the command points, I'm not going to spend more than 1-3 on TACs per round, Officers are the only ones who can issue any decent orders, NCOs can only use them to improve morale or get a unit into line formation, or possible spend them on extra dice in Melee (which makes a senior NCO a must-buy for a assault section).

I could see a budget in mid-size (1.5k) games with 1-3 points on TACs, 1-3 points on initiative, 3 on Officer orders, and a few on boosting Morale, but those points I had already at 1050 pts, so I'm not sure if I had too many NCOs, or if the Officer is supposed to issue multiple orders, or what the points are intended for.

 

I'm thinking of cobbling together some Optional Rules regarding having the old 'advanced actions' (charge, Long Range fire, double move) as 1-point orders (with 0 successes required?, just to mimic the old mechanic), giving some use for the NCOs spread around, but that won't be until I've had a few more games under my belt. 

 

I do like the reliance on the Senior Officers experience level, though. Makes it a bit more... personal might not be the right word, but defined that he is the one controlling the operation (and it makes it possible to spend different amounts on you commander, and really make a difference)

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You shoud try to use "With me" it s the more powerfull order (as you can deal a lot of damage arly in the turn)

 

But I agree with you: It would be nice to have more usfull generic order.

For exemple:

- An order do move at double and make a speculative fire

- An order to have a better cover

...

 

 

I'm thinking of cobbling together some Optional Rules regarding having the old 'advanced actions' (charge, Long Range fire, double move) as 1-point orders (with 0 successes required?, just to mimic the old mechanic), giving some use for the NCOs spread around, but that won't be until I've had a few more games under my belt. 

 

It s also a good idea. I think this kind of order should be automatly passed.

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You shoud try to use "With me" it s the more powerfull order (as you can deal a lot of damage arly in the turn)

But I agree with you: It would be nice to have more usfull generic order.

For exemple:

- An order do move at double and make a speculative fire

- An order to have a better cover

...

It s also a good idea. I think this kind of order should be automatly passed.

I think so, too.

The real strategic mechanic seems to have been drastically cut.

I only tried a 1000 points hand, so far, but I do not see this change at 1500 points..

I would have liked this long range fire orders..

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Delboy said that cmd points were super important when playtesting and something he found very difficult to know when to spend. That suggests the rules have changed since he was involved, or we are missing something?

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If I'm reading the rules correctly can't you also use Command generated for melee via the cold steel?

 

So a high generator (since you can only spend a max of what you generate) officer for any faction could potentially become a monster in melee. 

That might help use the command for something else. 

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In my game over the weekend it was a similar story, though I did use more of the orders.

 

Command points were mostly used to add dice to morale checks, as this did not always work a few Rally orders were also issued. Raus Raus (Prussian order) was used at the beginning and as there was a lot of firing lines behind walls Focus fire was used a few times. All in all I would say I was using about 4 or 5 command points a turn, but I did have 9 available.

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Drogmir: Yes, and it does not even require a Officer. A Prussian Colour Sergeant has 5 BLUE base, +1 BLACK for pistol, (usually +1 BLUE for charging in the first round) and then potentially another two for command points spent, that is 7-9 dice for a single model.

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The game's I've been playing both players have generally annihilated their command pools with decent officers on each side:

 

With me is phenominal, having a firepower based command squad grab hold of a second squad to fire as one is devastating, especially when you can put focus fire on one, I've used this to wipe out an entire unit of teutonic knights before.

 

Cold steel is where i seem to use a lot of command points (being PE) an Untermarshall and a squad of knights can buy 8 red dice alone (NCO 2 and Officer 6) and that odd colour sergeant makes a big difference.

 

Getting those rally orders in is also important to get the most out of each unit.

 

The only thing I'm not so sure of is the cost of veteran troops, if you've not passed the test on a blue six you probably shouldn't be taking the test with any expectation of passing, Veteran status so far has only been particularly useful for making "with me!" cheaper or rolling up when you throw a lot of dice at first turn.

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That is true, although they are also slightly less likely to break if they are in circumstance where more than 2 successes are needed - useful if you're playing a scenario with the Battle Weary Condition! :D

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I think it would be more logical to spend 1CP if you DON'T want to 'hit the deck'

To an extent I agree, if we went that direction though I'd be in favour of rewriting the whole of moral to incorporate a suppression mechanic.

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The game's I've been playing both players have generally annihilated their command pools with decent officers on each side:

 

With me is phenominal, having a firepower based command squad grab hold of a second squad to fire as one is devastating, especially when you can put focus fire on one, I've used this to wipe out an entire unit of teutonic knights before.

 

Cold steel is where i seem to use a lot of command points (being PE) an Untermarshall and a squad of knights can buy 8 red dice alone (NCO 2 and Officer 6) and that odd colour sergeant makes a big difference.

 

Getting those rally orders in is also important to get the most out of each unit.

 

The only thing I'm not so sure of is the cost of veteran troops, if you've not passed the test on a blue six you probably shouldn't be taking the test with any expectation of passing, Veteran status so far has only been particularly useful for making "with me!" cheaper or rolling up when you throw a lot of dice at first turn.

 

I don't like the With Me order, because I find that it actually reduces strategy or tactical options and cheapens the game.

 

In 1.0 the Teutonic Knights were fearful, and it took a lot of effort to reduce them before they were able to make a big impact in the game. But now 'With Me' just requires that I take an officer and non militia HMG or Battle section for my FSA and I'm reliably throwing out 28-32 Blue AD out to 24" or 32-35 Blue AD to 16".

 

It really takes minimal planning and little to no strategy. The ability to control units was important when there were no command sections but now it's just an overwhelming option and there really is no choice in the matter. It would be more interesting if With Me allowed both sections to act at the same time but function independently, because then a good player could make synergies to benefit the game but it wouldn't be as overwhelming as it is.

 

 

But, on another topic, can anybody explain to me what's up with the smoke barriers now? Why in the world are they IMPASSABLE to infantry yet only provide soft cover? I guess they could be representing a chemical solution that doesn't really give off much smoke... Which makes sense for the EotBS, but not really for other factions making use of smoke such as the Sturmwagen. 

Why wouldn't it have been Difficult terrain making units take their time to go through because they are wary on what's on the other side but making the smoke hard cover because it actually obscures the targets from view.

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Maybe the smoke includes mustard gas as standard?

 

With me does seem to undermine the whole point of alternating activations, its entirely possible any effect is has of reducing skill and tactics was intentional, Neil has often spoken of the games as being beer and pretzels style...

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Maybe the smoke includes mustard gas as standard?

With me does seem to undermine the whole point of alternating activations, its entirely possible any effect is has of reducing skill and tactics was intentional, Neil has often spoken of the games as being beer and pretzels style...

It's just a typo. Gas it's not impassible.

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Well I played another test game against myself last night. 1000 points of RoF vs FSA. I came up with Oblique Deployment, Breakthrough, and Limited Visibility.

 

I called the game at the beginning of the third turn because luck made the game worthless. 

 

Second turn my FSA got a Forward Observer and LMG on the Armored Marines. 9 Red AD and 4 Blue got 15 hits, and at the end of the turn after rolling the three medoc dice three times even with the 4+ from Dubois not a single man was saved.

 

Then I called the game after the FSA HMG squad rolled another 14 hits from the 14 dice the two HMGs threw out. That completely killed any chance my RoF had of fighting.

 

This came after the beginning of the third turn when my RoF officer ordered my big infantry section to fight with him and rolled a 28 Blue AD attack at my Treadbike section, and even with using the Placed Shots attack to get 4+ to hit only got 8 hits. 

 

Generally I just really don't like small games because luck always seems to have a much bigger impact in them but I just really don't think that I'm going to be bringing my new RoF out until they can actually field a decently sized force... It's a shame that it looks like I won't actually find the RoF field able until four months after their release at the earliest.

 

But again in my game trying to be objective... I think the orders mechanic has promise... But I really think that there should be a few more potential orders for NCOs and national officers to give that make them more than just a blanket boost to Morale checks.

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I guess I should clarify. Late in the game it looks like the Officers can have a ton of work to do keeping the forces together, although with RoF, KoB, and the TAC available keep it manageable.

 

Otherwise also in the late game some NCOs will be able to bring in an extra MAD or two, but that's only really useful for a couple of the factions. I chose to play FSA because I wanted to be able to work on using my mobility to shoot and keep out of combat, and that's how their faction description defines their fighting style, so I would MUCH rather actually spend my CP to further their combat tactics rather than being forced to rush into melee because that's their only useful way of using up the CP. 

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when you play 3 line section games do you use Major B and line ofc? did you use Orlington?   I noticed the FSA may have a little trouble not having a 3d ofc in 3 line section games for morale radius. thoughts?

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I do not like Beauregard, and I don't like being forced to pay 220 points for a standard Major without any additional abilities, orders, and 2 LP because he's the only officer who can't choose to leave his sidekick back at camp. 

 

I do really like Orlington. I always preferred to take him although I always felt like I was purposefully crippling my army by bypassing the best officer in the game.

 

That's one reason why I was pushing hard for FSA to be given a unit officer with a flavorful Order, because we are the only faction (that can actually field a platoon) without one and our other fun "officer" is only a NCO. 

 

But, right now that's not really here nor there. Officers now don't really seem that useful because NCOs can provide the same morale benefit, Rally is more lackluster when Snap out of it provides almost the same benefit for cheaper.

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I'm kinda struggling with the FSA cmd, I also really don't care for Major B and would rather take 2 line ofc if that was allowable, but RAW I know it isn't so..............................................................................!

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Is there anything in the rulebook that says otherwise the Orbat doesn't have any restrictions on taking only one Infantry Officer.

 

That said, if I was going to do it I'd field one upper level commander and one lower tier one.

 

The Characters have the Unique MAR so only one can be fielded but the Infantry Officer doesn't.

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