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Squad Leader» Forums » General

Subject: New to Squad Leader rss

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Mike McCarty
United States
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Hey guys,

I'm not necessarily new to gaming, I played DnD for years, Dawn Patrol, Bluemax, Axis and Allies. I always looked at games like Squad Leader, Panzer etc with a certain amount of awe. I'm older now and I want to take a stab at it. I've always been a history buff and have had a great interest in WWI and WWII. I have a few questions.

1) Original Squad Leader or Advanced?

2) Is there a miniatures version or has someone converted it to big boards and miniatures? I myself converted my Dawn Patrol and Blue max over to 72nd scale models. So ultimately my goal would be similar. (I'm a sucker for eye candy)

3) Do people play online?

4) What other games might I have missed out on that are similar or even better.

Okay Go!

Mike
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Brent Pollock
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1) Yes. Either is fabulous. I resisted ASL for a few years, but don't regret going that route and never played SL/COI/COD/GI again. You might want to hit the middle ground and try the ASL Starter Kits. If you're a "treadhead", try GMT's Panzer, too.

2) ASL also has two out of print modules known as DASL (Deluxe ASL), which was designed for use with minis, but smaller than 1/72. Streets of Fire & Hedgerow Hell. I had both and always enjoyed the larger hexes.

3) SL - don't know. ASL has been supported for a long time by VASL.

4) Nothing is better if you consider the breadth & depth. All the other stuff barely comes close in scope. ASL/DASL/HASL/SASL, Arctic to South Pacific. The world's your exploding, war-engulfed oyster. ASL does suffer from lack of serious Command Control but it never stopped us from having fun.
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Mike McCarty
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Awesome thanks! So ASL or DASL... Whats VASL?

Whats the learning curve? I have a friend (retired cop, currently AF reserves) He would be pretty new to gaming but loves military history. I heard the original SL rulebook is designed to baby step you into it. Is ASL rule book or Starter kit #1 designed like that too? Do you need any prior SL knowledge to get up and running with ASL starter kit 1?


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Reuben Lam
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Squad Leader has a program instruction rule set that slowly introduces game concepts through the scenarios. Given the games you mentioned this would help you get your head around the details of the rule set which can get overwhelming.

Otherwise getting the first ASL Starter Kits vs. the full blown ASL binder will also introduce the infantry rules without the big investment of the full system and you can gauge whether this is the game for you or not.

Only if you really enjoy that level of detail should you jump all in.

You can play online via VASSAL. there's an online community.

ASL, had a couple modules (ASL Deluxe) that had bigger hexes and a rules chapter (not very good) on using GHQ285 scale minis. You could adapt Tide of Iron or Battlelore style boards to ASL. ... Or take the VASSAL Boards to a printer and blow up the scale I suppose...

I grew up with ASL, so I can't recommend other systems as I'm biased. It's not for everyone as it's almost a lifestyle to invest the time to just read and be familiar with the rules.

Well worth it though if it clicks with you
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Badger
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McCarty13 wrote:

Whats VASL?



VASL is a programme that lets you play games online. Basically, it provides the boards, charts and counters but does not enforce the rules. You can play live or via e-mail. There is quite a large online community playing both SL and ASL through vasl/vassal.
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Mattias Elfström
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McCarty13 wrote:

Awesome thanks! So ASL or DASL... Whats VASL?

Whats the learning curve? I have a friend (retired cop, currently AF reserves) He would be pretty new to gaming but loves military history. I heard the original SL rulebook is designed to baby step you into it. Is ASL rule book or Starter kit #1 designed like that too? Do you need any prior SL knowledge to get up and running with ASL starter kit 1?



I started with SL back in the day. It is very well structured for learning. It will guide through a number of steps to the full game. When ASL was new SL was actually intended to be kept in print as an introduction.

If I were you I'd start with SL. If you like that you can try ASLSK, which has rules closer to ASL. If you are still interested after that ASL is a great game.
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M@tthijs
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Did you visit my www.kobudovenlo.nl? It has game info
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SL still has an active community and a ladder competition. That says something - it's not replaced by ASL; ASL merely caters to people who want (even) more details and thus rules.

Personally, I think SL is awesome. I prefer Face to Face games, but I've played using VASSAL too. Great fun.

I did try the ASL Starter Kits too - but I didn't like it. Too me, it felt like a whole lot of rules and chrome, for little extra in gameplay: I've played whole SL scenarios without touching the rulebook. While we never managed to do a single ASL turn without both of us paging and searching through our copy. Not for me.
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Scott B
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Probably the key difference between SL and ASL/ASLSK is abstraction. Compare and you would see all the big numbers are the same, same sequence of play, same looking scenario cards, same boards, same two dice. How does one tell them apart? Well, Squad Leader stared out the most abstract and as the system progressed, it added detail along the way.

For example, a 'Squad Leader' squad can be good order, broken or KIA. By ASL it can be good order, broken, casualty reduce, ELR, deploy into a half squad, experience 'heat of battle', get pinned, run, climb, swim, etc. They kept adding characteristics and abilities (and rules) along the way.

I prefer a game where i can focus on fire, movement and the victory conditions and i'm spending most of my mental energy and time on that in Squad Leader. As i progress up to G.I.: Anvil of Victory (not an ASL player), i spend more time mucking around with counters and trying to remember rules. For me, i like the abstraction of SQL but there are a whole of guys who like the detail of ASL.

You really can't go wrong either way. They all have good re-sale value of you decide to up/lower the game play.

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Mike McCarty
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Thanks everyone! I appreciate all the information. I knew you guys would come through...and damn quick too. I'll get a cheap used version of original SL here on the geek market and see how it goes.

I'll take a look at this VASSAL too that sounds fun.

S!

Mike
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Mike McCarty
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WBRP wrote:
1) If you're a "treadhead", try GMT's Panzer, too.


So how is Panzer? Similar but on a tank squad level?
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Mike McCarty
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One other question in the original SL there are 4 editions? Should I care? are they different at all or just reprinting?

MM
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Scott B
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Fourth is most current, third is ok. They amended with each new gamette and provided a list of changes in that gamette's rulebooks.

here are the changes by edition...
http://home.earthlink.net/~advancephase/edition%20changes.ht...

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T. Dauphin
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Belleville
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McCarty13 wrote:
Thanks everyone! I appreciate all the information. I knew you guys would come through...and damn quick too. I'll get a cheap used version of original SL here on the geek market and see how it goes.

I'll take a look at this VASSAL too that sounds fun.

S!

Mike


This is the VASSAL home page, in case you haven't already found it;

http://www.vassalengine.org/

In the modules pages you'll find this page with the Squad Leader module.

http://www.vassalengine.org/wiki/Module:Squad_Leader

I've enlarged a number of the boards and mounted them on some game board stock. That can get expensive because there are many, but any time I pull them out to show friends, they want to play on them right away.
Have fun.

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Mike McCarty
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Thanks I've been taking a look around its a little overwhelming at first. I have a message out to a guy in the geek market with a copy. I'll see if I hear back.

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Brent Pollock
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McCarty13 wrote:
WBRP wrote:
1) If you're a "treadhead", try GMT's Panzer, too.


So how is Panzer? Similar but on a tank squad level?


Well, my name is in the playbook for expansion 3, so IT IS FABULOUS! I might have lost some objectivity on this.

I enjoy the infantry game in Panzer, despite the understandable focus on AFVs. The command control is effective.
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Mike Baker
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If you are new to the Genre, the ASL Starter Kits are probably the best look at anything Squad Leader. SL is out of print, but still played, ASL is in print and looks to be undergoing a bit of a growth spurt.

Panzer and 88 both cover similar topics at a similar level of detail.

If subtactical WW2 is your thing, you might also take a look at the Conflict of Heroes series by Academy games. Much lighter in the rules department.

For the record, I own SL, ASL, ASLSK, and COH...I don't have an addiction...
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Jacques Mouchard
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Hello,

If you want to begin the easy way : try Valor&Victory

https://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/28452/valor-victory

One of the best Print'n play I ever see...


Jacques

 
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