Saturday, 7 October 2017

Squad Hammer - Turn example

This is just an ultra simpler overview of how the basic mechanics of Squad Hammer works.

Your turn
When it's your turn to play, roll two dice (D6) and pick the higher:
This is the number of units that can act this turn. The rest are assumed to be busy keeping their heads down, firing ineffectively at enemies in cover or eating their packed lunches.

This means you will usually be acting with 3-5 units each turn. This can be scaled up for mega-games (f.x. by doubling the roll).

This also means you have to prioritize a bit:
If you want to bring up reinforcements or flank the enemy, your fire at the main engagement is going to slacken off, unless you hope for hot dice.
Guess sarge can't both shout obscenities into the radio AND direct his grunts at the same time.

Actions
Each unit has 4 basic options open to it:
You can engage the enemy, moving and firing as normal (or using non-combat abilities).
You can regroup, attempting to restore morale (and remove "damage" tokens).
You can withdraw, recovering a bit of damage in the process.
You can redeploy, allowing you to move further than normal, if you aren't too banged up already.

Example:
I get 4 actions, so I'll have one unit fire at the enemy, while a second unit withdraws to get back into cover after a failed assault on a previous turn.

I'll use a third action to redeploy a tank around my flank and the last action to move up some infantry to support it, while firing at a distant enemy.

Combat:
Combat is simplicity itself:
Set a target number and beat it on 2D6.
The norm is that players decide the target numbers. Want to account for the smoke from that burning tank in the streets? All up to you.
If that sounds a little too hand-wavy, we of course provide some "canned" target numbers for typical degrees of cover.

If you hit, roll the damage die for the unit: Usually a D3, D6 or 2D6 pick best.
Units track damage taken with a small die next to them, this can represent suppression, morale loss, injuries, equipment malfunction etc.

When a unit exceeds 6 damage, its curtains and they're removed. Until then, they can withdraw or regroup to "heal" a bit.

Close range combat will have the enemy fire back and assaults get a substantial hit bonus, but for the most part, we've tried to keep combat as fast, simple and uncluttered as possible. Neil Thomas' "One Hour Wargames" was a huge inspiration here.

So what can my units be?
Pretty much anything you can think of.
By default, units are groups of 5-7 infantry, a weapons team or a single vehicle but there's no reason they could not be platoons or even companies.
For that matter, a unit could be a single soldier or hero if you like. It all just depends on how you like to play.

I'll post up some unit building examples in the coming week, as well as discuss things like Support options.