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Tet Offensive» Forums » Rules

Subject: All rules in a comprehensive way on 3 pages!!! rss

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Rob Veenenberg
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Tet-offensive 1968 van GDW Games (Frank Chadwick) 1991. Rob Veenenberg, 25-11-2016, version 0.4

The game is played between 2 or 4 players on map, showing areas in South Vietnam (SVN), Laos and Cambodia. Components are: a 6-sided die; 1 turn marker, 1 marker for NVA replacements, 3 markers for each faction (red NVA, black VC, green USA and blue South Vietnam) to mark losses or gains on the 3 demoralization tracks on the map. Demoralization levels are: 160 for USA, 130 for NVA, 130 for VC and 100 for South Vietnam. The game has 5 turns. Each turn is played in 8 phases. The game is played using these rules and 1 Combat Results Table for ground and air attacks. 2 player game: Communist NVA+VC against Allies USA with allies +SVN.

The map.
The map is composed of 83 areas where all the units in the game are placed. There are 3 types:
A) 30 Provinces; colored according to type of terrain: green lowlands, brown highlands and 3 marshy Mekong delta areas with splashes. 23 Provinces lie in South Vietnam the other 7 in Laos/Cambodia.
B). 41 Cities; which all lie inside the provinces, 10 of them have an Airbase symbol and all have a political value, displayed in a small yellow circle in the city area. Political values rank from 1 to 8 (Saigon).
C). 9 red colored circled sanctuary areas of the NVA (and VC). North Vietnam is also a sanctuary.
These type of areas and terrain have impact on movement and combat. The provinces in Vietnam each belong to one of the 4 Corps Sectors: I to IV; Corps areas are separated by a Yellow border. The number of each province indicates its Sector: 42 is province 2 in Sector IV. The brown colored Ho-Chi-Minh trail connects most sanctuaries and facilitates NVA/VC movement. Black-white dotted is the Highway (main road) in Vietnam and facilitate Allied unit movement. The red border is the border between Vietnam and Cambodia/Laos. The Mekong river flows in areas 42 and 43 and can be used by the US Riverine unit.

The Units.
There are 22 red NVA units (combat factors from 4 to 30) ; 56 black VC units (combat factors from 2 to 10) to fight a force of 18 large and 36 small dark green US units, 1 light blue Australian unit; 7 light green Korean units and 47 blue SVN units (combat factors from 2 to 16). This Allied force is augmented by 40 (large) blue Ruff Puff units (combat factors from 0 to 8). Left on the units is the Combat Factor, on Sapper units between brackets a Defense Factor and on Allied units on the right a Detection Factor. Allied units are color coded within the unit type icon according to the color of the Corps Sector: I=Light blue; II = Red; III = Light Olive and IV = Grey. Allied units with this sector color may only operate within their own sector; the 19 yellow colored theater units may operate anywhere on the map. VC units have a Corps number printed on them and are restricted in their movement to areas in their Corps Sector or the sanctuaries bordering provinces of their sector. NVA units are theater units and may operate anywhere on the map. 18 US large unit counters may move in both movement Phases, their special abilities are explained below. Cities taken by VC units, freed of Allied units get an Insurrection marker, with a bonus combat factor, double the value of its political factor.
The 10 South Vietnamese Ranger and Mike Force (MF) units have white letters on blue. If lost they have no impact on the demoralization track for the South Vietnamese faction.
USA has 3 special Recce units (no combat factor) to enhance detection of NVA/VC units in Laos/Cambodia and 1 for Vietnam.

Aim of the game.
Each faction gains points by eliminating enemy units or taking control of cities in order to demoralize enemy factions so that they will quit the game. Points are kept track on the 3 tracks for each faction.
A player wins if at the end of a Morale Phase BOTH factions of his opponent are demoralized.
Alternative: the player which demoralizes most factions wins the game.

Set up.
USA player sets all his units face up on the map according to the indicated start location on the backside of the unit. Ruff Puff units are placed face down randomly, 1 on each city except for Saigon. Then the VC and NVA units may be placed face down (black side up) on the map: the VC in Provinces or bordering sanctuaries of its Corps Sector; NVA units may be placed at any sanctuary, province in Laos/Cambodia. The 14 NVA non-divisional units MAY set up in provinces of I Corps sector.
The 2 Theater USA Air Units are set up in the 2 rectangular white boxes near the border of the map.

Turn Sequence.

1.NVA/VC Movement Phase.
NVA/VC units may move from a province to an adjacent province or from a province to a city in that province or vice versa. If starting in a sanctuary without enemy units, they may move to any other sanctuary along the Ho Chi Minh trail, but must stop in a sanctuary with enemy units. If they enter a city they are turned face up, if they enter provinces or sanctuaries they are turned face down. NVA/VC units may never cross yellow Corps boundaries. They can enter provinces within Laos/Cambodia and reenter Vietnam; VC units may then move only to provinces of their own Corps Sector. Any Ruff Puff units encountered are turned face up; Ruff Puff units with a combat factor “0” are placed in the Casualty Box.

2.NVA/VC Combat Phase.
The NVA/VC player turns all his units face up he want to attack in this Phase and can be fired upon. The Allied player decides the order in which the battles for areas are fought. In each area there is 1 round of combat where each player may use any combination of units to fire at ONE enemy unit as long as each unit fires only once and is fired upon only once.
In cities Allied units fire first; in provinces or in cities with an Insurrection marker combat is simultaneous (exception: on the first game turn NVA/VC Sappers fire first). In sanctuaries NVA/VC units fire first and if been fired upon there is one shift to the left on the column of the CRT for the attacker. In each fight the ratio is computed and rounded in favor of the defender. An attack with a ratio < 1:2 is not allowed and a ratio’s > 5:1 are treated as 5:1.
Terrain effects: Allied mech./cav. units fire at half strength in a Highland or Marshy provinces (not in cities of those provinces).
Combat Results: OR = Overrun: the unit is placed in the Casualties Box. H = Hit: the unit must retreat. Ruff Puff units hit are placed in de Casualty Box. NVA/VC units may only retreat to an adjacent sanctuary of the province (of the city) they are fighting in; free of enemy units or at least 1 friendly unit present. Allied units in provinces may only retreat to cities in that province not in Insurrection or occupied by enemy units. If placed in a city on a road they may only retreat to the first next friendly city on the road and if no theater unit may only cross the sector border if no other friendly city is present. Retreats from sanctuaries are not allowed, except that NVA units may retreat to first next sanctuary on the Trail without enemy units. If a unit cannot retreat it is placed in the Casualties Box. M = Miss: no effect.
If at the end of a combat Phase there are NVA/VC units on an airbase without Allied ground units present, the Heli/Tac Air units stationed there are placed in the Casualties Box.
If after Phase 1 or 2 there are VC units present in a city without Allied units, an Insurrection marker with a bonus attack factor twice the political value of the city is placed on the city and the VC demoralization tracks decreases with the political factor (if VC track = Zero, negative markers can be used), but only ONCE for that city in the game. The bonus attack factor can be used in battle; Allied units cannot fire at the marker.

3.Replacement Phase.
Both players (except on game turn 1) may remove units from the Eliminated Box to bring them back on the map. Allies: 1 US ground unit (no Ruff Puff); 1 SVN ground unit (no Rangers or “MF” units) to any secure (= uncontested) city (if no theater unit: in its own sector) and 1 Heli or Tac/Arc Air unit may be placed on a secure or contested airbase (if no theater unit: in its own sector). The VC may recover one 2-factor unit of each Corps to a non Allied occupied Sanctuary in or adjacent to its Corps sector. NVA units may return to any non Allied occupied sanctuary. The NVA receives 1 replacement point per turn. 1 point may be used to return one Regiment to play; 2 points one 18-factor Division: 3 points: one 24/30-factor Division. Accumulated NVA-replacement points are marked on a the NVA-replacement track on the map.

4.Allied player special large units (18) movement Phase.
The 4 Mech/Cav Units may move from a province to an adjacent province or from a province to a city in that province or vice versa. If starting in a city on the road without enemy units, they may move to any other city along the road, but must stop in a city with enemy units or which is in Insurrection. Units which start the turn because of a previous retreat outside their own Sector MUST move to their own Sector.
The Riverine Unit may move to any area in provinces 42 and 43 and may carry 1 non mech. Inf. unit.
The Battleship may be (re)positioned next to any of the 3 coastal Provinces within I Corps Sector.
The 6 Heli-units can be used to transport 1 non mech. Inf. unit (no Ruff Puff) from any area to any other area within its Corps Sector. Theater Heli units may transport one non mech. theater ground unit from any area to any non contested airbase in Vietnam. In both cases a Heli unit is taken from the airbase, flown to a unit, picks it up and flown and placed on an destination area. In the case the airbase where the Heli is stationed is contested, the Heli may fly (relocate) to any other uncontested airbase in the same Sector and can take 1 non mech. Inf. unit in that airbase with it.
The 6 Tac Air units may move to any area in their Corps Sector, if theater Tac Air to any area on the map, to make an air attack in the Allied Attack Phase. If starting on a contested airbase it may ONLY be used to relocate to an uncontested airbase in the same Sector. If no such airbase exists the Air Unit is grounded.

5.Allied Search Phase.
In Provinces an Sanctuaries Allied units must detect NVA/VC units before they can be attacked in the upcoming Phase, because the NVA/VC player may determine in combat outside cities if any of his units will fire and are turned face up or not. In each sanctuary or province where Allied ground units are placed with NVA/VC units, the Allied unit with the highest detection factor rolls a die. If the die roll is equal or less than the detection factor, as many enemy units as there are Allied ground units in the area are detected; if successful the Allied player may turn enemy units face up. Allied detection ratings in sanctuaries are – 1.
Allies may use 4 special Recce units: 1 in Vietnam, 2 in Laos en 1 in Cambodia. They may placed on alternation turns in provinces and each automatically detects 1 unit of his choice, which is turned face up.

6.Allied Combat Phase.
The NVA/VC player turns all his units which want to attack in this Phase face up. The Allied player decides the order in which the battles for areas are fought. Per Area first all air strikes are resolved before ground combat (see Phase 2) starts. The Allied player must allocate all Tac and Arc Light Air units to their targets before the die is rolled. More than 1 Tac Air can be allocated to 1 target. The Arc Light (B52) unit may bomb twice: against the same or 2 different targets, but may never bomb enemy units in a city where also friendly units are present. If targets in cities are attacked the demoralization track of both US and SVN is increased (once per turn) by the political value of the city attacked in that turn. The Battleship may support one Allied ground unit’s ground attack with its 10 combat support factor in the province or a city in the province where the ship is positioned. If at the end o the combat phase Allied units are in cities with Insurrection markers, these are removed if no NVA/VC units are present anymore. De SVN demoralization is decreased by the number of the political factor of the city, but only ONCE for that city in the game.

7.Allied Movement Phase.
All Allied units (except Ruff Puff’s) can be moved; the Riverine and Mech/Cav units can be moved again and the Riverine unit may again transport 1 non mech. unit. See rules Phase 4 for movement. On the first 2 game turns the Allied Units are surprised: the Allied player rolls one die per Corps; the number rolled determines the number of units which may be moved; no affected are Mech/Cav, Riverine, Air and theater units. All Tac Air/Arc Light and Heli units (also the 2 Theater) which at start of the phase are not placed on an airbase must fly back to an secure or contested airbase within the Corps Sector they are located (the theater air units to the 2 off map boxes); if unable to do so they are placed in de Casualties Box.
If Heli’s fly back they may transport 1 non mech. unit (no Ruff Puff) to the airbase. Heli units which were already placed on an Airbase at the start of the phase may NOT relocate to another air base.

8. Morale Phase.
Each factions count lost combat factors (use defense factor if present) in the Casualties Box, adjust the demoralization tracks with +1 point per lost combat factor and move all casualties to the Eliminated Box. There are 3 demoralization tracks: one for 1’s, one for 10’s and 1 for 100’s. There are colored markers for use on the tracks for each of the 4 Factions: NVA, VC, USA (+ Australian and Korean allies) and SVN.
SVN: Ruff Puff, Rangers and Mike Force units (units with WHITE letters) cost NO demoralization points. SVN & USA: points are lost for each city in Insurrection equal to the political factor of the city each turn. USA: Australian unit cost 24 points; each 2 Korean combat factor lost cost 1 point, fractions lost. For every 6 NVA/VC factors lost in combat this turn , 1 demoralization point is subtracted from the USA track, fractions lost.
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