Shooting and Squad Cohesion

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Achtung Minen!
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Shooting and Squad Cohesion

Post by Achtung Minen! » Mon Nov 23, 2015 3:33 pm

The rules are not particularly explicit about this, but is there any cohesion distance for soldiers in a squad/section or team (presuming your models are based individually)? My assumption is that teams from the same squad can operate at any distance and visibility from each other and still activate on the same card, but the 18" command radius will limit the utility of the squad's Big Man if one if the teams is too distant. What about cohesion distance between models in the same team? Can a team of four soldiers spread out across the entire battlefield, with something like 48" or more between each model? If so, do they still activate, shoot and spot as one (and if so, from which model's vantage point?). My guess is that, since the rules aren't explicit about this, it is assumed that you will generally keep your models in the same general area, within reason and common sense.

Also, do I have it right that a firing action uses up one Initiative Dice but Initiative Dice have no bearing on the number of attack dice you roll? Also, can you split fire with a single team (or MMG, etc) to attack two or more targets?

Finally, is there any advantage to having more than two models in an LMG team, other than to absorb casualties? That is, if I have a three man LMG team, can the third rifleman shoot separately? I ask because Panzergrenadiers (and potentially other forces) have infantry sections with two LMG teams instead of the usual rifle team and LMG team. That means in the larger, five man team, up to three Panzergrenadiers are doing nothing but sitting on their hands during the shooting action.

Achtung Minen!
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Re: Shooting and Squad Cohesion

Post by Achtung Minen! » Wed Nov 02, 2016 1:17 am

Well, since all of nobody bothered to answer these questions (after nearly 600 views), I guess I will share the answers that I settled on:

1) There is no cohesion distance (I inferred this from re-reading IABSM v2, which was the grand-pappy of TW&T, and also section 3.2.10). The 18" command radius, however, does effectively require you to keep teams somewhat together. If some of the team members cannot actually see the same target, I don't let them contribute to shooting (effectively reducing the active number of men in the team for that round of shooting). Thus, when there is even a moderate amount of terrain on the table, you probably want to keep your models together in a tight formation (although nothing is forcing you to do that).

2) No, or at least not exactly. A fireteam may have 3 initiative dice and a base 4 attack dice (for example, a 7 man rifle team, or an MG34 team). When they attack, they get their full attack dice, less any initiative dice spent on moving, spotting etc. So a 7 man rifle team that uses 2 of its 3 initiative dice to move would only attack with (4-2=) 2 attack dice. The MG34 LMG would be in the same situation, but would roll 2d6+2, since it adds +1 pip per dice rolled (4d6+4 if it had remained stationary). If the team uses all 3 initiative dice to do movement, spotting and so on, then the fireteam cannot attack at all (even though 4 attack dice minus 3 used initiative dice is still 1 attack die). Conversely, a team with 2 attack dice would only fire with 0 dice (plus any Big Man bonus dice, tripod bonus dice etc.) if the team had used 2 initiative dice for other actions, or, presumably, couldn't fire at all if it had used all 3 initiative dice (as this would put it into negative attack dice).

Also, I couldn't find any rules for splitting fire, so I am going to say "officially, no", but you could easily house rule this to split the attack dice between several enemy targets (not sure that would be very effective, but at least you have the choice!).

3) Absolutely not. The extra crew members are there to carry ammo and make sure the squad support weapon keeps firing. They may carry rifles for self defence, but their mission is to crew that support weapon and not to take pot shots on their own. Kudos to the Lardies for making this historically accurate game design decision.

As I said in the tank armour thread, it really is too bad that this forum is so quiet. I think TW&T is an amazing gem of a game... The real offspring of Sharpe Practice and IABSM, two of the Lardies best works. I still enjoy it magnificently and really wish the Lardies would take a crack at a second edition to clear up these rules queries. With CoC occupying their time, I don't personally see this happening, which is quite a tragedy!

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Re: Shooting and Squad Cohesion

Post by Archdukek » Wed Nov 02, 2016 11:39 am

I think you will find that the reason you had no reply to your original question is that virtually no one on this Forum plays or has played Troops, Weapons and Tactics. Those of us who are interested in WW2 infantry combat play Chain of Command instead which effectively replaced TW&T in the TFL catalogue.

Version 3 of IABSM tidied up a lot of similar issues with older versions of it, but like you I think there is no prospect of TFL returning to TW&T for a second edition. Apart from anything it would make no commercial sense when CoC is such a good seller.

If you want answers based on knowledge of TW&T rather than how these issues are handled in CoC then you might want to try the toofatlardies yahoo group. I think some members of it may still play TW&T.

John

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Re: Shooting and Squad Cohesion

Post by Achtung Minen! » Sat Nov 26, 2016 3:24 am

John, what do you mean "replaced"? The Lardies still sell and support TW&T, so I really cannot fathom what you mean there. I own and have tried CoC, but it's just not my cup of tea I'm afraid... the rules are too competitive and gamey for me (what with the list building and what not—very little support for just researching a historical battle and refighting it). I sincerely hope the Lardies never "replace" TW&T as I find that it is their best game, when all is said and done. It edges out the king, IABSM, only because it is so similar to it (and adds more on top of that).

Now I will say that even though I enjoy a good game of TW&T, I asked me wife and she said she preferred CoC! I was a bit surprised by that, as I haven't played CoC with her in quite a while, but she says the young neighbor across the street helps her with that. Who knew?

Anyway, I do hope you'll read my Winter War article in this Christmas Special, if Rich finds it amenable and decides to print it. Maybe it'll turn your mind around about TW&T.

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John Thomas8
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Re: Shooting and Squad Cohesion

Post by John Thomas8 » Sat Nov 26, 2016 4:24 am

I'll admit that TW&T plays better for me than CoC. And agree that the points/lists thingy has generated some "unpleasant" side effects. The story gets lost, sadly.

I will say that not having a card deck for purchase is quite....off-putting.

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Re: Shooting and Squad Cohesion

Post by Achtung Minen! » Sat Nov 26, 2016 4:38 am

John, I am just about to release a deck of TW&T card images on the Yahoo group, ready and set up for ArtsCow printing. I got my test batch run and they are absolutely gorgeous. Would you be interested in that?

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Re: Shooting and Squad Cohesion

Post by John Thomas8 » Sat Nov 26, 2016 4:41 am

Uh, ya. Like a drunk wants another drink! :-)

Archdukek
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Re: Shooting and Squad Cohesion

Post by Archdukek » Sat Nov 26, 2016 9:15 am

Actually I said "effectively replaced" by which I meant that Chain of Command covers the same level of conflict as Troops, Weapons &Tactics, has been a major commercial success and appears to be played by many more people than TW&T. However, if it's not your cup of tea that's fine, TW&T are also a fine set of rules.

There is nothing to stop you using CoC to fight historical events and completely ignore the Army lists and Force Rating system in the rules to field whatever troops your research shows were present. Indeed the rules explicitly acknowledge that possibility (see page 71). However, as the rules also acknowledge many players like to have some prepared scenarios available for ease of play and a system of army lists to allow them to use reasonably balanced forces in pick up games. That's what the army list and Force Rating system in CoC provides. It also provides a helpful steer as to how an historic force might be made up for those with little detailed knowledge of the army in question.

Of course as in any TFL game old Grognards are free to do their own thing if that suits them better!

While the army lists attract a lot of questions and related coverage on here, in my experience playing the rules there is far less list building involved than in other games. Especially if you play campaigns when your platoon composition quickly reflects how competently you play rather than how good you are at making up lists.

Meantime I will look forward to reading your article in the Special so I can think about how to adapt it to CoC. : )

John

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Re: Shooting and Squad Cohesion

Post by Archdukek » Sat Nov 26, 2016 9:23 am

Achtung Minen! wrote:John, I am just about to release a deck of TW&T card images on the Yahoo group, ready and set up for ArtsCow printing. I got my test batch run and they are absolutely gorgeous. Would you be interested in that?
If you have a set already set up on Artscow could you post the link soon since they currently have a sale on with free shipping offer which runs to 8 December. (Coupon Code : CHEERS)
Means succumbing to the temptation to buy more cards is a lot cheaper.

John

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Re: Shooting and Squad Cohesion

Post by John Thomas8 » Sat Nov 26, 2016 2:02 pm

I use the book-listed squad sizes. Everything else I make up, force level, supports, whatever. The trick is to give valid victory conditions (that are mutually exclusive but obtainable) to both sides and let 'em rip.

And if there's a sale at Artscow where we can grab a deck, that'd be awesome!

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