Questions about supports & retiring (mostly)

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Questions about supports & retiring (mostly)

Postby Tim D » Tue Oct 03, 2017 9:09 pm

I had a my first game of General D’Armee a little while ago and very much enjoyed the rules. I do have a couple of rules questions and one point about BUAs, which I will post separately:

1. In the charge phase, losing supports will retire if the lead unit retires, retreats or routs (p50). On the other hand in the melee phase any losing supports will merely ‘step back’ if their lead unit retires, retreats or routs (p91). This strikes me as a bit odd. Can anyone explain why this is? What’s the thinking behind it?

2. If a unit retreats or routs then a unit which is directly behind it will become unformed due to interpenetration (p83-4). However as I understand it when a unit disperses entirely then there will be no effect on any unit behind it. Is this right? It seems to me that any survivors would probably run though any unit behind in much the same way.

3. A unit (let’s call it French A) charges Prussian unit A which has another unit Prussian B directly behind it. Prussian B is about 10cm behind (15mm scale) so outside support distance. The Prussians loose the charge and their unit A retreats behind unit B leaving B unformed. However in the following fire phase can unit B, which did not participate in the charge phase, now fire on the French? (I think probably not as basically its’ all happening at the same time but I don’t see anything against this in the rules). Is the answer the same if Prussian B is actually slightly off to one side (so it was not interpenetrated) rather than behind unit A (which is what actually happened in my game)?

Many thanks in advance

Tim
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Re: Questions about supports & retiring (mostly)

Postby Archdukek » Tue Oct 03, 2017 11:25 pm

Welcome to playing General D'Armee, I'm sure you will find your next game even more enjoyable as you become more familiar with the rules. For what it's worth here is my take on your questions:

1. I don't know what the design intention was but my rationalisation is that although we carry out the charge procedure at the 5cm [3"] point a retire, retreat or rout result by the lead unit really represents a failure of morale on the approach with the unit losing its nerve and perhaps never properly starting the charge so it is easier for both it and any supports to disengage from the enemy and move away.
On the other hand by the time the melee phase is concluded the units are very much in close proximity to the enemy and any withdrawal by the supports has to be more cautious and careful as they fall back warily watching the enemy which has overcome their friends.

2. Interesting question, I hadn't noticed the distinction. I'd be inclined to treat it as a routing unit for the first part of its dispersal move so that it unforms the unit behind. However, even without that the unit behind would suffer the penalty of now being part of a Faltering brigade if it is charged so it isn't entirely unaffected.

3. Yes Unit B can fire in the fire phase as it played no part in the charge phase all the events of which are deemed to be slightly ahead of the rest of the turn. (See page 26) If it is within 10cm and to the rear it will be Unformed by unit A's retreat and suffer a -2 penalty when firing and use the Inferior a volley line so it's firing will be less effective.
If it was further back than 10cm or off to the side it would fire as normal without any penalty.

Hope this helps.

John
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Re: Questions about supports & retiring (mostly)

Postby DCRBrown » Wed Oct 04, 2017 1:13 pm

T,

Glad you like the rules!

Further to John's comments:

1. in the charge phase, losing supports will retire if the lead unit retires retreats or routs (p50). On the other hand in the melee phase any losing supports will merely ‘step back’ if their lead unit retires, retreats or routs (p91). This strikes me as a bit odd. Can anyone explain why this is? What’s the thinking behind it?

Initially there was no reaction to nearby supports post melee - which we too felt a bit odd. However, in addtion to John's earlier remarks I regard (and I appreciate that's pretty subjective), that the physiological impact of a charge either winning or losing it, is greater than that of having actually engaged the enemy and then fallen back after a melee. So it's as simple as that, after a melee you've overcome your psychological fear of the enemy, so your retirement is more measured. (I hope that makes sense!)

2. If a unit retreats or routs then a unit which is directly behind it will become unformed due to interpenetration (p83-4). However as I understand it when a unit disperses entirely then there will be no effect on any unit behind it. Is this right? It seems to me that any survivors would probably run though any unit behind in much the same way.

I agree - it is a simple mechanism to keep the game moving. I've also played it the other way as you suggest and then players stated that as so few survivors would be falling back they would have minimal impact. So out of the two options the way we have it at present it makes for a simpler game.

3. A unit (let’s call it French A) charges Prussian unit A which has another unit Prussian B directly behind it. Prussian B is about 10cm behind (15mm scale) so outside support distance. The Prussians loose the charge and their unit A retreats behind unit B leaving B unformed. However in the following fire phase can unit B, which did not participate in the charge phase, now fire on the French? (I think probably not as basically its’ all happening at the same time but I don’t see anything against this in the rules). Is the answer the same if Prussian B is actually slightly off to one side (so it was not interpenetrated) rather than behind unit A

Yes, Prussian B could fire but it will be classed as having moved, i.e. from up in the movement phase, thus it volleys using the Inferior volley line. Charges are deemed to be slightly ahead of normal movement, so think of the charge happening first, then your Prussian B's reforming and delivering hasty volley. In the second example Prussian B can fire without penalty has long as the Chargers are in arc.

DB
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Re: Questions about supports & retiring (mostly)

Postby Tim D » Wed Oct 04, 2017 5:43 pm

Thanks for both your replies. That's very helpful.

Tim

PS Nice to hear from you again John.
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Re: Questions about supports & retiring (mostly)

Postby jeb290 » Sun Oct 22, 2017 1:51 am

Here is another question about supports:

In today's battle, one Austrian battalion in line was charged by a French dragoon regiment. The Austrians chose to fire as their charge reaction so the battalion took and passed a Discipline Test and remained formed. It fired. Then the Austrian flank support battalion also fired on the attacking French regiment. We assumed that the flank support unit did not have to make a Discipline Test since it was not the target of the enemy charge. Is this correct?
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Re: Questions about supports & retiring (mostly)

Postby Archdukek » Sun Oct 22, 2017 9:19 am

Hi jeb,
Yes, I would say so. As you say the supporting unit has not been charged so need not take a Discipline Test to stay in line.

John
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