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Commands & Colors: Napoleonics» Forums » Reviews

Subject: Comparative review of CC:N vs CC:A rss

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Jonathan Davis
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I'm not going to try to recap the entirety of the rules, just going to quickly cover the differences between Commands & Colors: Napoleonics and Commands & Colors: Ancients, for those who are familiar with C&CA and wondering if they'd like C&CN

The first thing you'll notice is that the old light/medium/heavy green/blue/red system is gone.

Instead we have infantry/artillery/cavalry blue/yellow/red. This makes sense from a Napoleonic stand point, I think, where the focus was less on how your infantry was equipped and more on combined arms.

Dice:

The dice are a bit different.

One cavalry hit
One artillery hit
Two infantry hits
Melee symbol (only causes hits in melee)
Flag symbols (causes retreats in both ranged and melee)

This makes Infantry comparatively easier to hit than cavalry or artillery.

There is no leadership symbol. Instead, when you play a leadership card, a unit with a leader attached rolls +1 die. Leaders still allow you to ignore a flag result. Being supported also lets you ignore a flag result.

Command Cards

The cards are largely familiar, with a few new surprises.

You have your typical order 1/2/3 left/right/center, with the order one being the 'scout' cards familiar to any battlelore players. (You draw two command cards instead of one when replenishing your hand, and choose which one to keep).

You also have order 1/2 in all sections or 2 in both flank cards. There's a new one for ordering 1 in each flank and 2 in the center.

The 'order units in section equal to command rating' still exists.

The 'order chain of connected units starting from a leader' cards are no longer present, however.

The tactics cards are largely familiar as well, though there are a couple new ones.

Clash of Shields, Double Time, Mounted Charge, I am Spartacus, Counterattck, First Strike, and Rally all make a re-appearance. (With appropriately changed names, of course).

There's a 'bombard' card that is essentially a mounted charge for artillery, where they battle with two extra dice.

There is a 'fire and hold' card that lets infantry units do ranged fire with one extra die. Presumably the 'fire twice' of darken the sky would be a bit too strong.

There's a card where you activate all units with a leader attached, and they all battle with one extra die.

Then there is a 'La Grand Manoeuvre' where you can move your ordered troops up to 4 hexes, but may not battle. That's new, and seems entirely appropriate to a Napoleonic setting.

There's a 'Short Supply' card which can be played on any unit to force it to move back to a baseline hex in the same section.

For many of the tactics cards, guard units (infantry, cavalry, and artillery) roll additional bonus die above and beyond the bonus dice normally provided.

Unit Types:

The game comes with *four* copies of the unit reference aid. Two pages, both double sided. The outer two pages are the same, and include a general unit reference, the inner two pages are the french national specific reference card on two copies, and the portugese/british national specific reference card on two copies.

Unlike in C&C:A, your units lose combat power as they lose blocks.

Troop types:

Line infantry
Light Infantry
Grenadier Infantry
Guard Infantry
Militia Infantry
Light Cavalry
Heavy Cavalry
Cuirassier
Guard Cavalry
Artillery

The French get Young and Old Guard and the British have Rifle Light Infantry.

Ranged Fire:

Generally one die per block if you are stationary, one die per two blocks if you moved. So, ranged firepower much more powerful. Light and Guards tend to get an additional die. British units tend to get an additional die.

Infantry are 4 blocks, cavalry and artillery 3. British Light and Guard get one extra block, as do all French cavalry. Portugese and Rifle Light are only 3 blocks. For the halving, french and british round up, portugese down.

Melee Combat:

Generally one die per block. French tend to get an additional die, as do guard units and cavalry units. (So French Old Guard gets 2 additional). Cuirassier ignore one sword hit in melee. Rifle light and militia do not hit on swords.

Everyone battles back, just like in Ancients, and unlike in Battlelore.

Lights and Young Guard may move 2 and not battle, all other infantry move only one.

Grenadiers may generally ignore one flag. Guards units two. Militia run 3 for each flag. Everyone else one. Cavalry units may retire and reform when meleed by infantry. Victorious cavalry are the only ones who get bonus battle attempts.

Artillery:
Brand new unit type, basically. Foot artillery cannot move and battle. Horse artillery can. Each nations artillery is a little bit different and is spelled out on the national unit reference cards. Generally foot artillery can fire 5 hexes and horse artillery 4, and you lose firing power the farther away your target is. Artillery can 'melee' which is firing with strength 3 or 4 at units immediately adjacent to them.

By comparison, normal infantry range is 2, rifle light is 3.

Terrain:

Clear, forest, hills, impassable, rivers, etc, just like you'd expect. New types are towns, sand quarries, and windmills, which generally penalize the person attacking into them and not the people attacking out of them and make cavalry very sad. Each type of terrain indicates if you can form square there or not. Infantry are either in square or not in square, and there are a couple cardboard counters to indicate if a unit is in square.

Looking through the scenarios, terrain is *much* more prevalent than in Ancients. (As you'd expect) and all but one scenario seem to revolve around a certain major hill/town feature - quite a change from the essentially 'open plain bordered by impassible terrain/rivers' that seemed to make up most Ancients battles.

Forming Square

Infantry may form square if meleed by cavalry. If they do this, they actually battle back first (with one die). Then the cavalry attacks, with a maximum of one die. Cavalry may not ignore flag results caused by infantry in squares for any reason.You can't move in square but may battle (with a max of one die). Since you can't move, you lose a block for every flag result you take. (Leader lets you ignore one -- Squares can provide support in terms of ignoring flags but do not receive it).

Every time you go into square you have to put a (random) command card face down on a 'track'. Can only have 4 squares at once. Can't come out of square if enemy cavalry adjacent.Otherwise, you can be ordered to come out of square, at which point you get the command card you used to form that square back. (You also get the command card back if the unit in square is wiped out)

Infantry and artillery attack squares as normal.

Combined Arms

If an ordered infantry or cavalry is about to melee, an ordered artillery unit can join in, in a combined arms attack. The artillery dice are *added* to the cavalry/infantry dice and all are rolled at the same time. (So a combined arms cavalry/artillery attack is perfectly capable of crushing a square, as long as the cavalry doesn't have to retreat)

And that's about it. The rest all looks very familiar. So, definitely a commands and colors game, but with enough added differences to give it the distinctly Napoleonic feel one desires.
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Max Maloney
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Re: List of major differences between CC:N and CC:A
davisjh wrote:
Unlike in C&C:A, your units lose combat power as they lose blocks.

Wow, that's a big one.
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Jonathan Davis
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Re: List of major differences between CC:N and CC:A
Let me know if anyone has any questions. I'm just sitting here stickering a million blocks at the moment.
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Tanks Alot
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Re: List of major differences between CC:N and CC:A
Just finished my French, cant decide to sleep or try some brits...
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Max Maloney
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Re: List of major differences between CC:N and CC:A
davisjh wrote:
Let me know if anyone has any questions. I'm just sitting here stickering a million blocks at the moment.

My question follows.

Which is harder to sticker: the first 500,000 or the last 500,000?
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Jonathan Davis
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Re: List of major differences between CC:N and CC:A
I started with the Portugese so I could falsely tell myself I was 1/3 done when I completed them
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I legally own hundreds of polyhedral assault dice!
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Re: List of major differences between CC:N and CC:A
Sphere wrote:
Dormammu wrote:
davisjh wrote:
Unlike in C&C:A, your units lose combat power as they lose blocks.

Wow, that's a big one.

I hear that the new version of Battle Cry works that way also.


Actually, it doesn't. But there has been talk by some folks of porting some things out of C&C:N into BC150.
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Was George Orwell an Optimist?
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Re: List of major differences between CC:N and CC:A
BradyLS wrote:
Actually, it doesn't. But there has been talk by some folks of porting some things out of C&C:N into BC150.

Oops, sorry for the bad info. Maybe I read it in a variant thread, or maybe I'm just confused.
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Ray Brown
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Re: List of major differences between CC:N and CC:A
davisjh wrote:
Let me know if anyone has any questions. I'm just sitting here stickering a million blocks at the moment.


Mine was finaly deleiverd yesterday at work. It was extremly slow so I actaully got the whole game done.Cant wait to play this weekend.
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John Bock
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Re: List of major differences between CC:N and CC:A
davisjh wrote:
I started with the Portugese so I could falsely tell myself I was 1/3 done when I completed them


I just got mine yesterday. I think I will go this route too and try to bury the guilt: I still haven't stickered the 4th expansion of C&C:A
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Barry Kendall
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Re: List of major differences between CC:N and CC:A
Thanks for the scouting report. Very thorough! It sounds as though little has changed from the demos Richard ran, though I don't remember the "national artillery" differentiations, which sound interesting.

I only wish they had elected to enlarge the hex grid from 13 x 9 to about 19 x 13 to allow more sweeping flank moves with that four-hex no-combat move possibility and to reflect the depth of a number of Napoleonic battlefields.

Did you notice whether the board has an "open" side and end offering the possibility of mating-up to another board along either axis?
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Randall Monk
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Re: List of major differences between CC:N and CC:A
This is very helpful and I thank you, but why is this non-review in the review section?
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Cole Wehrle
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Re: List of major differences between CC:N and CC:A
Monkatron wrote:
This is very helpful and I thank you, but why is this non-review in the review section?


Sloppy geek modding.
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Max Maloney
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Re: List of major differences between CC:N and CC:A
It's substantive analysis. I don't think it's out of place in the Reviews section, traditional review or not.
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Miguel
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Re: List of major differences between CC:N and CC:A
I would say it is a much better review, conveying way more information, than most of the reviews that go through these days. Changing the title to Comparative review of CC:N vs CC:A would do.

Indeed a while ago there was a fantastic review comparing BL, M44 and CCA, especially for people new to the C&C system (EDIT: so that they can choose where to begin with...) this kind of reviews are very helpful.
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Steve Herron
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Re: List of major differences between CC:N and CC:A
I assume an infrantry can form square automatically, they don't need a command or a roll to do so?
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BrentS
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Re: List of major differences between CC:N and CC:A
Quote:
sherron wrote:
I assume an infrantry can form square automatically, they don't need a command or a roll to do so?


Yes.

It's getting out of square that requires an order.

Brent.
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Jonathan Davis
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Barry Kendall wrote:
Did you notice whether the board has an "open" side and end offering the possibility of mating-up to another board along either axis?


I don't think it does..I will double check when I get home. I know it's not two sided.

It is a very sturdy high quality mounted board though.
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Jonathan Davis
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franchi wrote:
I would say it is a much better review, conveying way more information, than most of the reviews that go through these days. Changing the title to Comparative review of CC:N vs CC:A would do.


Good idea. I've changed the title to exactly that. My intention was to write a review for people already familiar with the C&C system
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Steve Herron
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Quote:
Yes.

It's getting out of square that requires an order.

Brent. 1


Thanks Brent, so then the player would say I am unforming the square, pick up the card place in back in his hand (or discard it?) and that would be his action for his turn?
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Rick Young
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No, he'd order the unit in square as one of the ordered units the card played allows.

The unit gets out of square and may still move/battle.

Note however that it may NOT get out of square if enemy Cav is adjacent.

The card is retrieved when it gets out of square.
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Don Clarke
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Artillery can 'melee' which is firing with strength 3 or 4 at units immediately adjacent to them.

Grapeshot! Nasty...
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Patrick Leacock
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Barry Kendall wrote:
Did you notice whether the board has an "open" side and end offering the possibility of mating-up to another board along either axis?

No, the board has no "open" sides. It has decorative border on all 4 sides. Possibilities of other boards are discussed in another thread. http://www.boardgamegeek.com/thread/590120/double-sided-boar...
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Michael Edwards
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Quote:
British Light and Guard get one extra block, as do all French cavalry.


I assume this means British Light and Guard Infantry, not Cavalry. (As I note the Guard Heavy Cav for the Brits has only three blocks supplied, just like all other Brit Cav units).
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Jonathan Davis
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Correct. I was referring only to the Grenadier Guard (foot) the British get.

It's interesting that normal British light get 5 blocks, and rifle british light only 3 (though as mentioned, the rifle light are better at ranged combat).

Also the French have a guard artillery unit, while the Brits and Portugese do not.

I was a little surprised by how many units of British cavalry there were. I think at least 6 light cavalry to the French 3. There is one scenario that is retreating French infantry in squares on a plain being attacked by large numbers of British cavalry, so perhaps that is why there are so many.
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