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Arcane Warfare Excel 10» Forums » Reviews

Subject: AWE 10 walkthrough rss

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Eldar Closer
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AWE 10, Ancients without randomness

The Arcane Warfare Excel rules, published since 2002, have evolved into a mind game.
This is a miniatures game without inherent random factors, with the battle outcome exclusively dependent on player’s decisions. This includes using no dice, card drawing, written orders or predictable outcomes.
The game is played over rectangular templates, with sides multiple of 10cm for 15mm miniatures. These are very important because each 10cm segment is a ‘front’ that can be separately challenged.
The key for the new system is the use of hidden combat factors, that here are called Combat Tiles (model of use pat pending) or CT. These tiles have a value of one to three and are attached underneath the bases by the use of magnets; therefore there are no visible markers on the table.
Each army has a limited number of value 2 and 3 CT so on deployment there are two major decisions to take: units’ position and CT allocation. Real commander decisions like centre strength, a strong or a refused flank are consequently built in.
Movement and formation rules are very simple and no rulers are required.
Combat consists on a logical sequence that guides you through an if-then-goto framework, reminiscent of programming lines.
Dialog starts with the attacker threatening a front.
On the first step the only information known to the defender is what front is under threat.
By assessment of the whole situation the defender must chose to stand, hold or retreat.
On a retreat combat ends and the attacker may or may not advance to occupy the now vacant defense area, depending on his own choices after the retreat declaration.
On a hold the attacker must now reveal more of his intentions, including units participating in the attack and the attack type.
The attack options are charging, skirmishing or a feint, but not all unit types have all the options available. For example skirmishing requires light troops.
On a stand the defender gets ready to fight by selecting the defense units and at the same time leaves the possibility open for a counter-attack, that’s not possible on hold.
On both hold and stand orders a charge may follow, which will lead to a real attempt to force the enemy out of the defense area. Skirmishing or a feint will end the attack before physical contact.
On a charge players follow a strict sequence that will more often than not result in losses for both sides. During the charge outcome procedures a player with extra units participating will have his opportunity to counter-attack.
While both players incur losses during combat, only the loser will demoralize.
After a few plays, when the combat routine is assimilated, no chart consulting will be necessary. There are only 8 important tie break criteria and 8 modifiers to remember.
The battle is tense, unforgiving and very fast. A game using about 32 bases per side can be comfortably concluded in one hour and a half.
The learning curve is steep because this is a completely new engine, but the game is very immersive, so it does pay the effort. Replayability is unlimited: different template patterns are possible, plus adding a single terrain feature to the board centre will have a large tactical impact, most like on other games. But here there are two changing instances that can be simultaneous, resulting on wider consequences.
This first edition’s main objective is to present the new game. Four pages of combat examples, eight quick army lists and four table/board patterns are included to facilitate the first game’s setup.
This is a game that can make you feel like a true General: will you dare to take the plunge?

The rules are distributed by Wargame Vault as a fully functional .pdf file.


_____________________________________________________________________
Edited: after evidence provided below.
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Terry Andrews
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Just a note for historical completeness: Chris Engle (of Matrix Game fame) developed several diceless games (Ritter in '96, Fusilier in '97).
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Dale Hurtt
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T Andrews wrote:
Just a note for historical completeness: Chris Engle (of Matrix Game fame) developed several diceless games (Ritter in '96, Fusilier in '97).


Don't forget Jabberwocky (the fantasy version) in 1997. He also produced, but did not publish (to my knowledge) Ein Ritter Spiel, which uses a square grid. I did a review of all of these rules at http://daleswargames.blogspot.com/2016/09/rules-review-jabbe....

Now back to our regularly scheduled broadcast...
 
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Dale Hurtt
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By the way, you might want to check your file on WargameVault. It is throwing the following error when trying to download it: FAILED - The requested source file could not be found.: d:/RawPDFs/rpg/Jerboa Wargames/JW_AWE10_v1c.pdf

So people who have paid cannot actually get the product they have paid for.
 
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Eldar Closer
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dhurtt wrote:
By the way, you might want to check your file on WargameVault. It is throwing the following error when trying to download it: FAILED - The requested source file could not be found.: d:/RawPDFs/rpg/Jerboa Wargames/JW_AWE10_v1c.pdf

So people who have paid cannot actually get the product they have paid for.


Today I had a lot of trouble uploading an update file, but the problem has now been fixed.
It is virtually impossible for someone to pay and not get their product. If you pay a pdf you can always go back and download again.
Any download problems that you cannot solve should be reported to WV costumer service.
Anyway, if it all fails I would personally fully refund the buyer.

 
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Eldar Closer
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dhurtt wrote:
T Andrews wrote:
Just a note for historical completeness: Chris Engle (of Matrix Game fame) developed several diceless games (Ritter in '96, Fusilier in '97).


Don't forget Jabberwocky (the fantasy version) in 1997. He also produced, but did not publish (to my knowledge) Ein Ritter Spiel, which uses a square grid. I did a review of all of these rules at http://daleswargames.blogspot.com/2016/09/rules-review-jabbe....


Thank you for this information.
There were also diceless rules called Ebb and Flow of Battle, Napoleonic, by Peter Heath, Anschluss Publishing, based on written orders.
In both cases these rules for me can hardly be classified as 'games' because they are based on deterministic results.
For a deterministic game to work, such as Go and Chess, abstraction must be very high, combinations must be very wide and odds balanced to the extreme, like the komi on Go: virtually impossible in this context.
I quote from your review: "The one thing about deterministic combat is that it squeezes uncertainty out of the game."
Anyway if Chris Engle's rules do not include written orders I have to recognize that my assumptions about the first miniatures game without randomness or written orders must be corrected.
 
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Eldar Closer
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T Andrews wrote:
Just a note for historical completeness: Chris Engle (of Matrix Game fame) developed several diceless games (Ritter in '96, Fusilier in '97).


Relevant info for sure, must try to find them.
Did they require written orders or not?
 
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Terry Andrews
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Chris Engle's rules did not have written orders. These rules are very hard to find.
 
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Eldar Closer
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Thank you, that was key information.
 
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Dale Hurtt
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Eldarest wrote:
Today I had a lot of trouble uploading an update file, but the problem has now been fixed.
It is virtually impossible for someone to pay and not get their product. If you pay a pdf you can always go back and download again.
Any download problems that you cannot solve should be reported to WV costumer service.
Anyway, if it all fails I would personally fully refund the buyer.


My point was not that I was "cheated", but that it was not available. I thought you might have wanted to know, not knowing whether WV would contact you over the weekend. And I am aware of how WV's downloads work. I have too many files in my library as it is!

T Andrews wrote:
Chris Engle's rules did not have written orders. These rules are very hard to find.


Actually, Hamster Press' web site is still running. Chris still has Centurion up on his web site. http://hamsterpress.net/?p=237 There is a Products page and contact information. I always ordered from Chris via email. He always seemed to have more inventory (or printed on demand) than was showing on the site.
 
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Eldar Closer
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dhurtt wrote:

My point was not that I was "cheated", but that it was not available. I thought you might have wanted to know, not knowing whether WV would contact you over the weekend. And I am aware of how WV's downloads work. I have too many files in my library as it is!


Yes, that was wholly appropriate.
I hope the problem has been solved: I must now update the second paragraph in the main rules!
 
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T Andrews wrote:
Chris Engle's rules did not have written orders. These rules are very hard to find.


Chris has kindly sent me the Centurion pdf, that has very good ideas. Will play soon.
But it is a boardgame using square counters, it was not published as a Miniatures Wargame.
 
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A list of miniature wargames without randomizers can be found in this forum, at:

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/thread/1679753/miniature-wargam...

To be updated as more data is confirmed or more games are identified.
 
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