Wednesday, 10 February 2016

Generating a battle for Five Men at Kursk

Today, we'll do a quick look at how to roll up a random force and a mission for them to undertake.

We'll use Soviets as the example, since I just finished all the tables for them.

We'll use 1944 as an example.

The squad:
First step is to determine the number of men we'll have. We will be starting with only 7, meaning we've likely lost a few along the way.

Soviet squads receive a single Commander figure, representing the squad leader. If we were a Guards formation, we'd have a small chance of receiving a second, representing a particularly trustworthy squad member but we'll have to make do.

We roll 3 dice to see if we have any Key Individuals that would boost our squads ratings but no such luck. Everyone is fresh off the farm, I guess.

The first part is our support team. This will have our DP machine gun and a rifle man.

The second part is our squad leader. He'll have the choice of a rifle or sub machine gun. We pick an SVT semi-auto rifle for him.

The remaining squad is the rifle portion but as Soviets, we'll be able to swap two of the rifles for sub machine guns.

Doing so will give us 2 rifles and 2 SMG, which seems fine. We go ahead with that.

Now we can roll for a few variations. The only roll that succeeds is to obtain a pistol, which we'll give to one of the two riflemen. He's managed to scrounge up a Luger from a dead Fascist.

Troop ratings:
Our squad will have the standard rating for late war Soviets, giving us:

Mobility 1
Fire Discipline 3
Morale 4
Coordination 2

This gives us one bonus move each turn (the same as western allies, less than the Fascists), 3 reactions per turn (pretty average), 4 rallying attempts per turn (high) and since our coordination is lower than the average German squad, they'll get a bonus action die each turn.

Overall, the Germans will get more actions and move a bit more frequently but we'll be able to rally our troops quicker.

We'll generate two characters for the squad: Our squad leader and the rifleman with the pistol.
We could skip this part, but why play a campaign if we don't roleplay a little?

Our squad leader was a white collar professional before the war,working in some office in Moscow. He is motivated by bloody-minded Revenge against the German invaders and his outlook is Accepting, which is the most common.

A somewhat bitter individual but he submits himself to the necessities of the war effort.

We'll go ahead and say that our rifleman has become one of his few true friends. A true proletarian of working class roots, the sense of brotherhood in the army is what keeps him going.
Unfortunately, he is in Despair.
The war has been too long, too many of his friends have disappeared before his eyes.

Ouch. That gave the campaign a bit of a dark tone.

The mission:
We're ready to undertake our first mission then.
This will be a meeting engagement and the objective is a General Combat Patrol.
This means we don't have a specific objective indicated, we're to move into the area and pick a fight with whoever we find out there.

A perfect mission for a slightly under-strength squad.

Turns out we'll be doing so with a support element on our side.
A roll gives us some mortar support. I guess company wants to make sure this patrol goes smooth.

We narrate that the front is fairly quiet right now, so the company has sent our squad out to go kick up the hornets nest. The squad leader has a few flares in his pocket and the mortars have been sighted on likely target spots.

The opposition:
The dice give us about the same composition for the enemy. One squad and one support element.
The roll for support gives them an extra MG team. Not good. Hopefully we can use our mortar fire to suppress them.

With all that, we're ready to go in. Hope we all make it back out!

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