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Subject: Moving all units, how to keep track of it! rss

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Eric Pietrocupo
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Are there tactical war games where you can move all units on the board?

What kind of mechanics do they use to remember what unit has already moved?

I was thinking about tapping tokens.

 
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Kent Reuber
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You can either rotate the unit (assuming that facing isn't important) or many games include some kind of status counter, for example:

World at War/Nations at War: "Ops Complete" counter
Panzer Grenadier: "Moved/Fired" counter
 
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Michael Aldridge
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- flipping tokens
- putting an unused token on top
- turning tokens or minis to face a different direction (as long as facing isn't important)
- turning figures on their sides
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Beau Bocephus Blasterfire
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You could always move them in order going from left to right from the top working your way down. Then you would only have to keep track of which spot you last moved. This is assuming you are playing on a regular board with some sort of grid like layout.
 
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Eric Pietrocupo
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I am playing on an hex board. Considering I would use flipping for HP, I think rotating is the best solution. Else moving 3-5 units per turn could be a solution.
 
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Benj Davis
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One very clever thing that Twilight Imperium (Third Edition) does is that it's movement system involves "activating" a hex, which then immediately lets you move any ships to it if they can reach it. Ships that are in an already activated hex can't move.
That has the effect of meaning you can only move ships to a given location once a turn AND you can only move a given lot of ships once a turn.

(note that there is the extra wrinkle of one of the Strategy cards letting you remove the activation token from a hex, so you could move things out of it in the same turn)
 
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Eric Pietrocupo
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Yes I know TI3, the problem is that there is only 1 unit per hex, so a command counter in each hex would not be convenient.

Fi finally uploaded a picture of my latestes playtest, here is what the prototype looks like.



One idea was to use a small map with a low amount of units on each side like a dozen so that it becomes easily rememberable.

Another idea was to have cards that tells you "move 5 units", "move 3 units" OR that gives you a list of movement like:

Move 3 sea units
Move 5 air units
Move 5 ground units

So you execute them in this order and have little chance of confusion.

Another idea was to separate various flanks in various colors and play 1 flank at a time with the option to have each flank be played by a different player.
 
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Mark J
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There are lots of games out there where you can move all your units every turn.

I've rarely found keeping track of this to be a problem. Usually I just start at one end of the board and move across, right-to-left or top-to-bottom or whatever. Or if the board naturally divides into regions, I'll move them region by region, like in a World War 2 game maybe move units in Europe first, then units in the Pacific, then whatever other scattered units.

Sometimes game makers suggest flipping pieces over after they've moved or rotating them to point in a different direction. I thinking flipping them over is generally a pain because then when you're done moving you have to flip them all back. And of course in some games flipping a piece over has some other meaning, like it might have a reduced strength on the back and you're supposed to flip it over when it takes a hit. Rotating the piece could be a problem if units have a facing that means something, i.e. the unit is supposed to be pointed in the direction that it is travelling or firing.

But as I say, in real life this is rarely a problem. You just move through your units in some methodical fashion, like left-to-right, and it's rarely a problem.
 
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Sam Cook
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Do you want to limit it so that every unit only gets one movement action a turn? If not, you could implement a fuel currency where every unit has a different cost to move one space, and give players some kind of fuel resource to spend on this movement. That way you just spend and move until you want to stop.
 
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Eric Pietrocupo
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Each unit moves once per turn.

About moving hem all in order, it should be very hard to play this way because sometimes the results of some engagement will influence the movement of other units.

For example: Destroy that Anti-Air first so that we can move in out air units. So I doubt it would be possible to move them in order.

So far, tapping or limited moves seems to be the best solution.
 
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sunday silence
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Flipping is the method I would try first, because you can have a totally different look to the back side of the unit, so it will be very clear who has moved and who has not. WHen you rotate you can sometimes get confused if counters or figures have a direction to them, and so rotating complicates things.

I have tried making games with this method and it's not very easy.

Have you thought of alternate ways to create the same effect? Perhaps one could use cards to move certain units. And you might have to put them in a queu. So like a card moves 2 INF, then another card moves one ARMOR, etc.

 
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Eric Pietrocupo
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That is what I thought with having a card that list for example:

Move 3 sea units
Move 5 air units
Move 5 ground units

Either you need to do them in order, or you must move up to the number of listed units.

Either the order is fixed and always the same, or either some cards make some units move before the other.

I think the best order would be to go from slow to fast which would probably be:

Sea
Ground
Air

Another variant is that both player play the same step on after another. Ex: Player A pay sea units, then player B play sea. Player A play ground, then player B play ground, etc.

You could even have various initiative values for each step. For example, I might lose sea and ground initiative, but win Air initiative.

In my old rules, I used a move first attack later system where both player moved, then they initiated attacks, but I am not sure if it is very convenient to play.
 
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Jarratt Davis
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Well I'd either limit the number of units in a game or limit the number you can move per turn. Being able to move all units in a game with a large number of them means lots of potential downtime for players during a turn. If it was me and I had a large number of units I'd use the simple mechanic of actions. Basically have a small number of action cubes/counters which you place next to units you plan on moving, then as you move them remove the counter/cube. I think this has already been suggested, too tired to read the above and double check. whistle
 
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Eric Pietrocupo
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I also seem interested in aiming smaller with the option to play bigger if the player want to.
 
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sunday silence
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Hatonastick wrote:
.. If it was me and I had a large number of units I'd use the simple mechanic of actions. Basically have a small number of action cubes/counters which you place next to units you plan on moving....


But I think the OP's whole idea is to make things more realistic by not allowing a unit to keep moving multiple times in a row. To take an example with a few units, it would be unrealistic to have Lee's army taking Harrisburg, Washington DC etc. all in a row, without anything happening in the western theatre.

Plenty of other examples could be given with many units, like having Napoleon's Old Guard rout the Prussians, then they turn on Wellington then they disrupt a rear guard in Bruxxles, it just isnt realistic they have to get tired.

I think the OP's idea here is valid. ANd I think it's only fair if you want to suggest something to try to accomplish that.

Or so it seems to me.
 
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Mark J
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In the "traditional" Avalon Hill/Simulations Publications/Decision Games - style war game, each turn you move all your units, then you resolve combat involving all units. So it's fairly easy to keep track: move units from one side of the board working your way to the other, then resolve combat starting from one side of the board and working your way to the other.

If you intersperse combat, or some other activity, with movement, then, yes, you create a situation where the order in which you move units matters, and so you can't do the simple "sweep" approach.

My first thought is to say, Don't intersperse movement with combat. That tends to make the game more difficult to play. Without knowing more about your game I can't say if in this case it is in fact a good idea. Assuming for the sake of discussion that it is, then, yes, you need some way to mark which units have moved, such as flipping them over, rotating them, or having some "already moved" token that you place on top of them.
 
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Mark J
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sundaysilence wrote:
Hatonastick wrote:
.. If it was me and I had a large number of units I'd use the simple mechanic of actions. Basically have a small number of action cubes/counters which you place next to units you plan on moving....


But I think the OP's whole idea is to make things more realistic by not allowing a unit to keep moving multiple times in a row. To take an example with a few units, it would be unrealistic to have Lee's army taking Harrisburg, Washington DC etc. all in a row, without anything happening in the western theatre.


Exactly. If a player has, say, 50 units, but he is only allowed to move 5 units each turn, than you will likely often have the case where the same units move over and over while others sit around doing nothing. Of course in real life there have been cases when an army wouldn't move -- I'm talking to you, General McClellan -- but in real life the 3rd Division doesn't fail to move because the 4th and 5th Divisions have used up all that army's movement allowance. That's not how real life works.
 
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Eric Pietrocupo
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The kind of game I am aiming for is something similar to conflict or dai senryaku but simplified to be playable as a board game.

Super Conflict


Dai Senryaku


They are mainly move and attack games. Instead of using fog of war, I'll use the idea that all units must be spotted to be attacked, where scout unit has a 2 hex spotting radius.

For board game adaptation, I'll remove fuel consumptions. Units will only have 2 HP to easily keep track of it by flipping the unit.

 
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Eric Pietrocupo
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Quote:
Exactly. If a player has, say, 50 units, but he is only allowed to move 5 units each turn, than you will likely often have the case where the same units move over and over while others sit around doing nothing. Of course in real life there have been cases when an army wouldn't move -- I'm talking to you, General McClellan -- but in real life the 3rd Division doesn't fail to move because the 4th and 5th Divisions have used up all that army's movement allowance. That's not how real life works.


I agree that it's true, but many game suffer from this syndrome already. Like for example, the command and color series. Heroscape also have such mechanics where you move 3 squad, but in their case, they can move the same squad 3 times in the same turn. Conflict video game does that, but you have the option to move all units

I think it could reflect the idea that you are not focussing on all flanks at once. You are doing small operation at a time. The main difference with command and color system is that you can chose which units moves. While in command in color, if you draw badly, a flank can stay idle for the whole game.

Another idea to counter balance that is if I use a list of movement, I could add non-combat movement to the list to make sure some flanks are not left behind.
 
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Jon M
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Edit cross posted but remainder still holds:

I would recommend checking out the session reports on Little Wars by Pete Belli. Aside from being a great read he has some good ideas for adapting the left - center - right approach alongside command points to shape a battle narative and provide interesting choices for the players.

This also easily lets you tailor command and control advantages into your rule system rather than having to make a host of special rules for each side. eg a scenario with a small elite force and large conscript force is easier to make a game of as you can simply reduce the command points for the large force. They become slow and unwieldy and it prevents them overwhelming the opponent without gimping the unit stats.
 
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