Monday, 29 February 2016

Shako to Coalshuttle. Initial FAQ

In connection with the beta, here's a preliminary FAQ from a few things that's come up already.

I'll go back and edit this as more questions come up, as I see fit.

Are firing bonus dice per stand or per unit?

When calculating the number of firing dice (or charge dice for that matter), unless the entry in the table specifically says "per stand", it's always a fixed unit bonus. 
For example, infantry with magazine rifles get 1 die per stand, plus 2 dice added on top of that.

How does cavalry fire?

They don't. While some cavalry throughout the period would carry carbines or pistols, their use was usually pretty limited.
For troops that fought as mounted infantry, use the Light Infantry troop type instead.

Why is infantry able to charge cavalry?

A charge in game terms is any deliberate, energetic advance on the enemy position, not purely and specifically a bayonet charge.
If an infantry unit comes close enough, we can assume the cavalry would likely fall back rather than be shot to pieces. 
If the charge does result in hand-to-hand fighting, we figure that the cavalry counter-charged under fire.

Just what is the ground scale?

Heavily abstracted. We start from the assumption that smoothbore muskets can reach about 6" on the tabletop and then built the other weapon ranges around that, occasionally adjusted quite heavily to account for the range where troops could inflict significant damage. 

Yes, there's plenty of instances where infantry fired at very long ranges but when we look at, for example, the American civil war, troops didn't typically fight at distances that were remotely near the technical capability of their rifle muskets.

How should we handle troops of mixed quality?

For the time being, if an army includes troops of highly varied troop quality, simply assign the army a reasonable average. 
I suspect there'll be more detailed rules for this later on.