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Subject: Enemy Mortars... do I have this right? rss

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Home Mixer
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The rules seem to indicate that enemy mortar teams place a +3 Heavy Weapons marker.. and that's that. Since each 'pip' holds 2 shots, then a mortar team that shows up places a +3 fire marker on the friendly unit that generated it, then two turns later is out of ammo....

Is that correct?
 
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chris leko
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The scenario should tell you how many fire missions mortars get. Each fire mission is one ammo. I think they have between 2 and 4 in the first few.
 
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But... the way mortars attack is to place a +3 VoF marker, correct? You don't have to draw for result, like a grenade or artillery?
 
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Antonio B-D
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Dan, it is 1 attack. 1 attack that makes a +3 effect (are you sure it is not a -3 effect?). You do not spend amunition depending on the effect but on how many attacks.
 
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Err.. yes, -3 I mean. Yes the question was not effect/ammo, but that am I correct in reading that when a Mortar attacks a card, it doesn't need to draw for a result, it just places a -3 VoF (or whatever strength it is) marker on the card?
 
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Ben Hull
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For enemy mortars the initial placement does not require a draw for that fire mission. For subsequent fire missions the enemy spotter for the mortars functions much like a US FO (forward observer). They will draw for a fire mission, and if the blast icon is drawn (a Call For Fire action), then the Pending Fire Mission is placed and the a fire mission is expended from the number available. If the call for fire fails, no fire mission is expended. The enemy spotter remains in play as long as fire missions left.
 
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Thanks Ben!

I have to say, you have a great game here... but I just can't seem to get through a session. Always bogs down into searching BGG for a ruling while flipping through charts and the rulebook until my head hurts.

Note: My current game all three scout platoons ran into mortar or arty spotters. Lots of dead and wounded GIs laying all over the place. Sent a couple Officers up to try and salvage what troops where left, and all 3 spotters triggered a barrage. Not much left of my troop.

I have resigned my commission.
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David Janik-Jones
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Icedanno wrote:
I have to say, you have a great game here... but I just can't seem to get through a session. Always bogs down into searching BGG for a ruling while flipping through charts and the rulebook until my head hurts.
I do this too but less so on my 10th play. I am playing a Vassal game with a fellow BGG FoF fan to make sure we are both interpreting everything correctly. If you wanted to do the same some time, please send me Geekmail and we'll go through one together if you like. (And you're a Power Grid and Samurai fan so you must have good taste!)
 
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Paolo
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Icedanno wrote:
But... the way mortars attack is to place a +3 VoF marker, correct? You don't have to draw for result, like a grenade or artillery?

For the sake of clarity, mortar teams ( those with a G! VOF ) automatically place a grenade VOF until they run out of ammo, while enemy mortar FO must draw a number of cards and look for a blast icon.
Is this right?
At least that's the way I played until now...
Paolo
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David Janik-Jones
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pinoz64 wrote:
For the sake of clarity, mortar teams ( those with a G! VOF ) automatically place a grenade VOF until they run out of ammo, while enemy mortar FO must draw a number of cards and look for a blast icon.
Is this right?
Yes.
 
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Colin Lewis
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benhull wrote:
...If the call for fire fails, no fire mission is expended. The enemy spotter remains in play as long as fire missions left.

If the the incoming mortar was the only VOF on the board at the time the subsequent call for fire fails, and the FO is not spotted, I understand that the Incoming VOF is removed.

Will the contact activity immediately change to reflect that?
 
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Bruno Pigeon
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Wrong.

Any unit with a G! has to make an attempt to fire, it is not automatic. You draw 2 (+/-) cards and seek a grenade icon.

Any unit with a A, S or H will fire automatically.

A spotter will have to call fire from off-map, draw 2 (+/-) cards and seek a burst icon. It has a limited number of fire missions before he disappear.
 
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Bruno Pigeon
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colinkun wrote:
benhull wrote:
...If the call for fire fails, no fire mission is expended. The enemy spotter remains in play as long as fire missions left.

If the the incoming mortar was the only VOF on the board at the time the subsequent call for fire fails, and the FO is not spotted, I understand that the Incoming VOF is removed.

Will the contact activity immediately change to reflect that?

Colin, when the spotter first appear, you will automatically place an Incoming! VOF marker on the unit that triggered the PC marker and resolve it during combat.

Next turn, in the enemy activity phase, the spotter will try to target the same card, since his incoming marker is still there. If he succeed, you place and Pending Fire mission marker. if not, then no marker is placed.

Then, in phase 3.7.1a you will remove the Incoming! marker, and if you placed a Pending Fire mission in a previous phase, flip it to it's Incoming side.

The activity marker is changed immediately to reflect any change in any phase of the game.
 
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John Brown
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6.5 Grenade Attacks does say that units with a G! VOF (not G! superscript) can make a grenade attack out to their printed range.

However, 6.7.4 seems to indicate that on-map mortar teams are an exception (emphasis mine):
Quote:

On-map mortars have two methods of lay, meaning how they
engage targets. Direct Lay is when the mortar crew can observe the
target. When they are used this way, they fire just like any other
infantry unit
...

When firing Direct Lay - meaning that the Mortar is firing at a card
to which it has LOS, whether the H-rated squad or the G!-rated
team - that fire is treated exactly like any other Direct Fire (exception:mortars can ALWAYS fire over friendly units). Thus, it places
a PDF, making it eligible to help qualify for Crossfire. Also, like
any other Direct Fire, it is subject to the Terrain Effects dictated by
the card borders that the fire crosses.

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Bruno Pigeon
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Oh, yes, I missed that one. But really, how hard was it to write: Direct Lay Fire: Mortar with H or G! VOF will fire automatically at the target every turn. No need for an order.

Which leads to another question, if the G! mortar fires automatically, does it still needs to draw for cards to determine if he places a Hit or a Miss?

I really need to do a rules rewrite for this game.
 
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Mark L
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Icedanno wrote:
The rules seem to indicate that enemy mortar teams place a +3 Heavy Weapons marker.. and that's that. Since each 'pip' holds 2 shots, then a mortar team that shows up places a +3 fire marker on the friendly unit that generated it, then two turns later is out of ammo....

Is that correct?
Three step mortar "squads" (sections) have an H VOF (-3), which they place automatically each turn they have something to shoot at. No call for fire or grenade attack draw required. They usually have 6 turns of ammo, which can be carried by their three steps.

Single step mortar teams have a G! VOF. They make a grenade attack draw to determine if they hit or miss, per 6.5. For the US, G! weapons also require a "Attempt to Make Grenade Attack" action to fire, so I require enemy G! weapons to get a "Grenade Attack (Concentrate Fire)" result on their Activity Check to (which will occur pretty often until you spot them and return fire...). Their first shot is automatic tho, but still draw for hit/miss. Especially for enemy mortar teams, it might make more sense to let them fire automatically each turn.

Interestingly, in the first Normandy mission, the German mortar teams are given 6 ammo, tho a single step can only carry 2 mortar ammo. I just assume they've stockpiled more ammo, but if they move they abandon the extra. Alternatively, you could assume they have extra ammo-bearers.
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Bruno Pigeon
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Mark, I would have a tendency to agree with you. But what does 6.7.4 means then concerning G! Mortar teams?
 
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Bruno Pigeon
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Browsing the rules thread, I found the answer by Ben Hull concerning G! Mortars in this thread.

Question: Do you need to command a mortar to fire direct lay?

The answer is G! Units must be commanded to open fire. So 6.7.4 doesn't make them open fire automatically.
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John Brown
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Good find, Bruno. I stand corrected.
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Bruno Pigeon
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I'm still not sure what is meant by 6.7.4. though. Remove those rules, and you remove ambiguities...
 
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Antonio B-D
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super_bruno wrote:
I'm still not sure what is meant by 6.7.4. though. Remove those rules, and you remove ambiguities...

I am not sure how 6.7.4 reads now but the key concept is that, using Direct Lay, mortars work like other friendly units. Therefore, if other friendly units need an attempt to fire G! weapons (or Grenades), mortars with a G! VOF will need a positive result.

Otherwise, they will simply put a -1 Grenade miss counter, a PDF and possibly a crossfire.
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Bruno Pigeon
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Ah, that makes sense. Thanks!

 
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Mark L
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Pretty much what Antonio said.

6.7.4 as quoted and highlighted by Granger44:

Quote:

On-map mortars have two methods of lay, meaning how they
engage targets. Direct Lay is when the mortar crew can observe the
target. When they are used this way, they fire just like any other
infantry unit
...

When firing Direct Lay - meaning that the Mortar is firing at a card
to which it has LOS, whether the H-rated squad or the G!-rated
team - that fire is treated exactly like any other Direct Fire (exception:mortars can ALWAYS fire over friendly units). Thus, it places
a PDF, making it eligible to help qualify for Crossfire. Also, like
any other Direct Fire, it is subject to the Terrain Effects dictated by
the card borders that the fire crosses.
I interpret the highlighted sentences to mean "per section 6.0 Infantry Combat.". 6.0 and 6.1 state that units with Basic VOF open fire automatically. Basic VOF is defined in the glossary (1.2.6) and in 6.2.1 as S, A, or H. Since G! is "Special VOF" it doesn't open fire automatically, so 6.5 Grenade Attacks applies.

IIRC from conversations years ago, the rationale for the G! VOF is that though a unit may fire an explosive round, it doesn't have enough rate of fire (or a large enough round) to warrant a full Volume of Fire that affects an entire card with it's full strength (tho -1 VOF/modifier for a Grenade Miss might still get your attention!). So in game terms, units with a G! VOF are treated as "grenade projectors". OTOH, a mortar section (two or three step "squad" in game terms) has three tubes firing in coordinated manner and can blanket the target area better, hence a full H VOF.

I prefer using the company mortars as a full section rather than individual teams anyway, especially for their Indirect Lay capabilities. And after WWII, you don't have the option to deploy them as teams.
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Antonio B-D
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The good thing about deploying them as teams is that you can assign them to an squad and give them more firepower. This strategy has its drawbacks obviously and I still prefer the section approach, but it is something to keep in mind.
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