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Memoir '44» Forums » Variants

Subject: Minor Combat Tweak: Grenade Symbol and Artillery Targets rss

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Read the rulebook, plan for all contingencies, and…read the rulebook again.
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This evening, we tried something a little different...

A member of our group suggested playing the game with the following small changes (taken together) to the way faces on the combat dice are applied. I should add that they are meant to be used together.

1. The Grenade symbol is still a "hits-all-targets" result, but is applied only at a range of 1 hex. The Grenade symbol is applied to targets as a 'Miss/No Hit' at ranges of 2 or greater.

Mnemonic: Grenades are effective only at close range.

2. Artillery shares the same Target Symbol as Armor in combat. That is, when conducting combat against Artillery, an Armor symbol counts as a 'Hit.'

Mnemonic: Both have large caliber guns served by shielded crews.

(Note: The mnemonics are just a handle to help players remember the change if they decide to try it. They are not reasons to justify the change.)

Effect: The effects of the two changes together are:

1. Makes Infantry and Armor a bit harder to hit.
2. Makes Artillery slightly easier to hit.
3. Generally reduces the effectiveness of all units in combat-- except in adjacent/Close Assault combat.
4. Encourages players to close the range with their opponents.
5. Helps underscore the "operational" scale of some scenarios.

The game still plays about as quickly as before. Perhaps a few minutes longer because units aren't eliminated quite as quickly as they sometimes might. The Japanese in a couple Pacific Scenarios we played seemed to have a bit more staying power. But we had both American and Japanese wins, so it didn't seem to have a great effect on game balance. (Remember, they only work if they are both used together. Otherwise, Artillery is absurdly hard to hit in the first instance and as vulnerable as Armor in the second.)

Whether the change is "more realistic" is open to debate, but we're open to giving it another try in some other scenarios.
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John O'Haver PhoDOGrapher
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Me and my friend tried the exact same tweak last time we played M'44 and decided that's the way we'd play it from now on. But C&C:Ancients arrived at my doorstep and we haven't revisited M'44 since. I'm glad someone else has tried and liked it.


We have another experimental rule we've been testing as a form of Battle Back. I'll post that when finalized.
 
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Nice suggestions that I'll have to try out next time. Played about 6 games of Memoir '44 last weekend after not having played it for awhile. What struck me this time (even though I've played over 100 games of it) was that artillery is just insanely hard to kill even at very close range. Your mods seem like a good solution as tanks and infantry adjacent to artillery should not have such a difficult time killing it.
 
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John O'Haver PhoDOGrapher
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Quote:
Might consider modifying to make the artillery still hit at range with a grenade (just seems right..high explosvies).



Maybe just BIG GUNS get kills on grenades?
 
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scribidinus wrote:
Quote:
Might consider modifying to make the artillery still hit at range with a grenade (just seems right..high explosvies).


Maybe just BIG GUNS get kills on grenades?


Allowing Artillery units to still inflict a hit when they roll Grenades was a further amendment a friend suggested also. However, we decided at the time to say 'no.' Mainly because Artillery still have big advantages by being able to fire without the need to check LOS and they still ignore terrain modifiers-- even against bunkers. When you take away the Grenade hit at ranges of 2+ for everyone, the remaining advantages for Artillery seem stronger by comparison.

Scrib's idea has merit, too, but I hesitate to endorse off-hand because Big Guns are already picking up a die and added range because they are Big Guns. We'll have to try it and see.

Another idea to consider might be that Artillery units (Standard and Big Guns) which roll a Grenade at ranges of 2+ apply the Grenade as a 'Retreat' result instead. (Which I think might better reflect the dispruptive and interdictory nature of indirect Artillery.) Or maybe they pick up the Grenade as a hit at a range of 1-2 hexes (Close Range for Artillery in the game) or perhaps even if they can trace LOS to the target. Lots of different things we could try.

I should have added that we play that the Artillery Barrage and Air Power cards are still applied as wirtten: Grenades DO score hits.

As mentioned, with the tweaks applied as initially written, the game balance didn't seem to change. Just a bit tougher to inflict hits at the critical 2-3 hex range (where most ranged combat takes place). No change at all at a range of 1 hex-- except that the chances to hit Artillery in an adjacent hex double.

 
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Quote:
Allowing Artillery units to still inflict a hit when they roll Grenades was a further amendment a friend suggested also. However, we decided at the time to say 'no.' Mainly because Artillery still have big advantages by being able to fire without the need to check LOS and they still ignore terrain modifiers-- even against bunkers. When you take away the Grenade hit at ranges of 2+ for everyone, the remaining advantages for Artillery seem stronger by comparison.


Artillery was the big killer in WWII. I like your mods but letting artillery hit with grenades too seems right.
 
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Will Green
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GreenBear wrote:
I like your idea.

Might consider modifying to make the artillery still hit at range with a grenade (just seems right..high explosvies).



I have been using the 'Close Grenade hit variant' with great success. I also have been using the 'grenade hits when artillary fires', and because of the high explosives quality of their ordnance, this seems to fit the flow of the game, as well as, it seems more realistic.

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andrew
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BradyLS wrote:


1/ Grenades are effective only at close range.

2/ Both have large caliber guns served by shielded crews.



when i lokked at the post i thought that's a good idea.. by the time i had read all the responces i weas convinced it was. great thinking LS..

now all i have to do is rub out the tank symbol on the dice and replace it with a gear symbol (mechanical hit)...

i think i'll be addopting this at my house and days of wonder should consider it too i think.

cheers a.
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Andy Watkins
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Hi there,

I have been playing M44 and come to the conclusion Artillery is too effective, it spoils the game when heavily used.

As such I came looking for ideas and found this thread.

Looks great I will try it.

TANK kills artillery as well. This is actually the mod I was going to try I had thought of this myself.

Funnily enough though I disagree with some of the suggestions here. One of our concerns was that once you get adjacent to guns they fire with 3 dice, this seems too much in a close assault....

As such I may well accept your mod that grenades only kill at 1 hex BUT leave it that grenades do not kill when it is artillery firing even at 1 hex range. i.e. grenade = close assault weapons which is fine for inf and tanks but inappropriate for field artillery.

Anyone like this idea?

Andy
 
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Andy Watkins
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Tried your initial ideas.

Grenades only kill at 1 hex
artillery are killed by tank symbols.

Works great.

Highly recommended.
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Chester
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I think I saw this somewhere on here already so I can't claim to have come up with it. The way that seems to work best for us is to follow your tips (grenades only at close combat and tank symbol hits artillery). However, we still allow artillery to hit on grenades (high explosive shells after all). To balance this, we require either the artillery to have LOS, or any friendly unit to have LOS on the target. Otherwise artillery battles at -1 die. Admittedly, there is almost always LOS given the size of the board and the typical number of units in a scenario, but it does give you a some tactical advantage to be able to sneak around a forest or hill or something.

If anyone else has tried this, I'd love to hear your opinions.
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John O'Haver PhoDOGrapher
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We play that Grenades only hit at one hex range as Brady suggested and with the Spotting rules you suggest also modified that Artillery is 2/2/2/2/2/2 if it or another friendly unit has an LOS to the Target otherwise it's 1/1/1/1/1/1. (-1 die as you recommended).

Big Guns have a Range of 8 hexes and are still two dice if target is spotted (-1 die if not) but they also hit on Star symbols versus Infantry and Artillery. Increasing the number of die sides that are hits works better for us than increasing the number of dice.

I'll post the latest version of my M'44 variant by next weekend.
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I played my first 30 or so games wrongly by having the tank symbol kill artillery. Worked fine. Scenarios were still balanced enough so that I didn't notice them being too tuff or too weak. Go for it
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StevenE Smooth Sailing...
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Well this brings up an idea I've pondered with of maybe moving away from a 6 sided die to an 8, 10 or 12 sided one.

Adding an artillery and a sniper icon could make it easier to remember how units get hit.
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