My blog about my wargaming activities. I collect a lot of 15mm miniatures for the American War of Independence and so collect a lot of rules for this period. I started miniatures with Napoleonics, so I have a number of armies in 6mm and 15mm figures for skirmishing. I have15mm WW II figures that I use for Flames of War, Memoir '44, and someday, Poor Bloody Infantry. Finally there is my on-again, off-again relationship with paper soldiers that I sometimes write about.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Flying Lead - Owning the Rules

Well, I shall take TMP's and Ganesha Games' advice and own the rules that I buy. If something isn't clear,  or is clear but seems wrong, or is missing something, just say the hell with with author and the company that sold it to you; fix it yourself.

So, here are the things that bother me in Flying Lead, and what I am going to do about it.

  1. Leaders don't lead, they order people about.
    1. Leaders can't keep up.
    2. Leaders don't lead by example.
  2. Gone to Ground can create problems.
  3. There is nothing slower than two actions for a Short move.
  4. Grenades should not be allowed to pre-measure.
Leaders don't lead, they order people about

The big problem with Leaders (and NCOs) is that they are not part of the group, the group is what they give an order to. This leads to the issue that Leaders often cannot keep up with the movement of the group they are leading. Further, because they are not part of the group, they cannot participate in group activities, such as Concentrated Fire.

So, I propose that if a Leader qualifies as being part of the group (e.g. being within a Short of at least one other member of the group, forming a chain, etc.) the Leader can give one of the following orders:

Move Out! The Leader and up to five additional figures roll to activate. This is a single activation roll, using the lowest Quality that would apply. (Note that the Leader does not get the Leader Bonus to activate, so he may be the lowest roll.) If they activate they move as a group in the same basic direction. There can be minor deviations in each figure's movement, but in the end they must maintain the same relative positions, with less than a Short in deviation.
Move Out! fixes the biggest problems with Group orders: that the Leader cannot keep up with his men. He is so busy ordering people about, he has no time to move himself. Believe it or not Leaders can walk and talk at the same time and this order allows it.
Charge! The leader and up to five additional figures roll to activate. This is a single activation roll, however; each figures uses their own Quality to determine how many actions they receive. If any of the figures fails two or more actions, the round immediately turns over to the enemy; no actions are taken by any figures, even if they had a single success. The only allowable actions are:

  • Stand up
  • Remove Knocked Down or Shaken status
  • Move (towards an enemy figure)
  • Hand-to-hand combat
Note that this order cannot be given while the Leader or Group members are already in hand-to-hand combat.
    Charge! solves the problem of getting a group, and the Leader, into hand-to-hand combat at the same time. This is a much more natural Group order than "hey you guys charge them and I will follow you later", which is how the current system plays out. The reasoning for allowing each figure to separately determine the number of successes is so different Quality values would have different numbers of actions, which makes sense in a charge. The lower Quality will have fewer actions, representing their reluctance to enter into hand-to-hand combat.
    Fire With Me! The Leader and up to 5 additional figures may fire at a single target, using the same rules as Concentrated Fire, except that the Leader is always considered to be the firer.
    Having the Leader designate the target that others fire upon makes sense, especially as Leaders often carry tracer rounds for just such a purpose.
    These three additional Group orders should help the Leaders in Flying Lead actually act like leaders, and not like managers. I will be sure to give it a testing here the next week, as I continue to game on my holiday off.


    1. Thats what house rules are for changing things to make them better for you.

    2. Makes me think of GW LotR game's approach to hero/leaders...
      I like it.


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    Huachuca City, Arizona, United States
    I am 50 yrs old now. I bought a house in Huachuca City, AZ (although I have a townhouse in Houston, TX and a small home in Tucson, AZ) working on a contract for "the next two years" that is going on five years now. To while away the hours I like to wargame -- with wooden, lead, and sometimes paper miniatures -- usually solo. Although I am a 'rules junkie', I almost always use rules of my own (I like to build upon others' ideas, but it seems like there is always something "missing" or "wrong").