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Subject: SL & ASL - Can you help me understand that? rss

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Maciej Kaleta
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Well, I'm not talking about the rules, but first things first. Because of you, people of BGG, I got interested in wargames and ordered a copy of Combat Commander: Europe for myself. That was not hard, as it is easy to obtain here in Poland (hell, it's even the first, not reprinted, version, and there's plenty of it in the shops). I'm waiting for the package, and now I find a hell of info 'bout Squad Leader and Advanced Squad Leader. Yeah, I know it isn't (ASL) an easy game to begin with, but, come on - I like 'realism' and plenty of details, so when I found this out, I thought 'that's my dream game!'. The problem is, it is out of stock. But there's so many expansions, versions and all, that I got lost and I dunno what to look for. Afair what I would need to start playing SL is just the game itself - there's some of it on the Ebay. What about ASL? I know there are 3 starter kits, and only one of them is avaiable on MMP site (if they say the truth). But I see plenty of modules (which, if MMP's site isn't lying, some of are buyable), and a great rulebook, which has no maps or counters (and is avaiable in Poland - http://www.rebel.pl/product.php/1,106/11306/Advanced-Squad-L... ).

So, what would I need to get into Advanced Squad Leader? Just the starter packs (and is the #2 really possible to buy via MMP?)? Them and the rule book? Them and modules? Which ones then? Everything is impossible to get for me, so please tell me, what should I look for to start playing?

And one more thing - is anything for SL or ASL planned to be reprinted? Getting a fresh copy would be just awesome!

Thanks for all the help you can throw at me.
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Russell InGA
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ASL: Rulebook & Beyond Valor

and/or

Start with the Starter Kits.

------------------------------

If you are interested in ASL level of detail of WWII combat, you might also want to check out ATS by Critical Hit. The games are self-contained and have pretty good availability.
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Maciej Kaleta
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Well, that makes sense - there are dices, maps and counters in 'Beyond Valor'. Thanks!

And by the way - are there other counters in there? Like smoke, rubble, etc.? And where are the US forces?
 
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Torsten Meckel-Hartmann
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In BV you find everything to start playing - it is the basic module of the system. Almost all of the informational counters are found herein.

The basic US forces can be found in Yanks: ASL Module 3 (Paratrooper is no longer existant - it was an introductory module made obsolete by the starter kits), and the Marines in Gung Ho!: ASL Module 9. MMP is working on a summary module on the pacific theatre, so a little patience might be in order.

Oh, by the way - there is a golden rule: Buy ASL stuff as long as it's in print. Afterwards, you might have to take that second mortgage... ;-)

Welcome to the world of ASL. Start with the SKs and work your way up. Attend a tourney, if you can, or use VASL - there's almost always somebody willing to teach a newbie.

Regards,
Torsten
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A warning, though: ASL will not give you realism. It will give you lots of detail, many interesting mechanics and a well thought and well explained ruleset, but, as somebody put it, it is not a good simulation of WWII, but an excellent simulation of WWII movies.
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Paul Amala
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"Heke Heke": Hamsterish for "Huh?"
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Well - that is a real question.

If you want to sample ASL the starter packs from MMP are the way to go - start with #1 and see if it is your cup of tea. But if you are sure you are going to be pretty hard core about this get the (newly reprinted) 2nd edition rule book and the "Paratrooper" module - if you can get it. It is OOP, but a good starting point. I like "Beyond Valor" module too, but it will cost you some serious coin.

Now the original SL - I still give that some play. The first set is easily available and a lot of fun. (I have two copies which shows how I feel about it).

Like "Star Fleet Battles", ASL or SL is a life style - lots of fun but pretty heavy as far a commitment goes. There are other lighter games (like "Combat Commander" or "Conflict of Heroes" that give that squad level feel for a lot less time/money investment. Enjoy whatever your choice.... (all have VASSAL support - which is a real plus).
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Robert Wilson
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HeinzGuderian wrote:
A warning, though: ASL will not give you realism. It will give you lots of detail, many interesting mechanics and a well thought and well explained ruleset, but, as somebody put it, it is not a good simulation of WWII, but an excellent simulation of WWII movies.


What makes you say that?

Its one of the only games Ive ever played that rewarded realistic gameplay , then again I dont know any of the gamey tactics yet apart from skulking
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Wolfgang Kunz
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metor2 wrote:

Oh, by the way - there is a golden rule: Buy ASL stuff as long as it's in print. Aftewords, you might have to take that second mortgage... ;-)

Regards,
Torsten


A very wise rule - listen to it.

Simply spoken for ASL: The lower the module number the better. You need Beyond Valor because it has the Germans (and Russians). WW2 without the Germans is less fun (only if you want to play the Pacific).

Higher module numbers often have scenarios that need stuff from the lower numbers, f. ex. Module 4 Yanks needs maps and (sure) counters from module 1.

If you buy module 12 (Armies of Oblivion) you can be sure to need at least most of the other modules for the full enjoyment. Same (and even more) for the various scenarios packs.

One good thing: If you have the rulebook + Beyond Valor you can play "Valor of the Guards" (fighting in Stalingrad). Also some of the reprints by MMP come with added value (like Beyond Valor: more scenarios) or Doomed Battalions (containing the Last Hurrah), the mentioned Pacific Module or Armies of Oblivion (making "Partisans" obsolete for the counters - not for the scenarios).
 
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Jay Richardson
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Maciej Kaleta wrote:
So, what would I need to get into Advanced Squad Leader? Just the starter packs (and is the #2 really possible to buy via MMP?)? Them and the rule book? Them and modules? Which ones then? Everything is impossible to get for me, so please tell me, what should I look for to start playing?

And one more thing - is anything for SL or ASL planned to be reprinted? Getting a fresh copy would be just awesome!

The SL modules were discontinued long ago and will never be reprinted, but it's not too hard to obtain used copies, and there is a community of players that still play and support the SL system.

The Starter Kits are an excellent (and relatively inexpensive) way to get into ASL. All three Starter Kits are complete games by themselves... so if you get a copy of ASLSK #2 you can start playing immediately. It includes everything that you'll need to play its scenarios.

ASLSK #1 – Is being reprinted right now and should be back in stock soon.

ASLSK #2 – In stock.

ASLSK #3 – I haven't heard anything yet about when this might be reprinted.

For full ASL you need the ASL Rulebook and Beyond Valor, both of which have just been reprinted. Beyond Valor includes all of the necessary markers/information counters for the entire system, and all of the German and Russian counters.

All of the ASL "core modules" – the ones that contain the counters for a specific nationality – will be reprinted... eventually.

The non-core modules (Action Packs, and historical modules like Valor of the Guards) may never be reprinted once they sell out, because they are optional add-ons that are not *required* by anyone who wants to play ASL.

To summarize, to get started in ASL/ASLSK you need *one* of the following:

* ASLSK #1
* ASLSK #2
* ASLSK #3
* ASL Rulebook + Beyond Valor

Any of these four choices gives you everything you need to start playing, although to play full ASL you will eventually need the ASL Rulebook and Beyond Valor... even if you already own one or more of the Starter Kits.
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Maciej Kaleta
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Whoah, a lot to answer. So:

Quote:
Oh, by the way - there is a golden rule: Buy ASL stuff as long as it's in print. Aftewords, you might have to take that second mortgage... ;-)


Gotta follow that rule. Although it's hard to do that in Poland, where not many ppl sell it. Gotta ask some shops to drag SLkits here.

Quote:
Wehrmacht (affengeil),


Come on, it's not me who thought this nick up. I got a german marching backpack and thats what people came up with. Not in a offensive way, tho.

Quote:
what t-appelle you in tactical games?


I'm kinda new, and I know it's complicated, but I learn fast. I also love details.

Quote:
A warning, though: ASL will not give you realism. It will give you lots of detail, many interesting mechanics and a well thought and well explained ruleset, but, as somebody put it, it is not a good simulation of WWII, but an excellent simulation of WWII movies.


I noticed that in my post - and thats exactly what I'm looking for!

Quote:
Simply spoken for ASL: The lower the module number the better. You need Beyond Valor because it has the Germans (and Russians). WW2 without the Germans is less fun (only if you want to play the Pacific).


I can see that : D

Quote:
ASLSK #1 – Is being reprinted right now and should be back in stock soon.

ASLSK #2 – In stock.

ASLSK #3 – I haven't heard anything yet about when this might be reprinted.


I have a good news - I emailed MMP with a question about reprints, and the answer I got is similar - #1 will be reprinted shortly, while #3 probably somwhen in winter.

Thanks for your all help.

So, one little thing - what will I find in the starter kits? I mean, I know that #1 is infantry, 2# is guns (mainly, not only) and #3 is tanks, but - which nationalities are there?

And by the way (maybe a strange question, but hell) - did any of the modules ever introduced Fallschirmjagers (german paratroopers)? I kinda like this formation and I'm wondering how a Operation Merkur (for instance) or fights for Monte Cassino would look like in ASL.

Great help of yours, gotta start hunting for module #2!
 
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Wolfgang Kunz
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Wehrmacht wrote:


So, one little thing - what will I find in the starter kits? I mean, I know that #1 is infantry, 2# is guns (mainly, not only) and #3 is tanks, but - which nationalities are there?


SK I: Infantry + support weapon; Russian, German, US
SK 2: guns + more support weapons
SK 3: tanks

somewhere in there are Brits and Italians if I remember right (sorry, have the kits not with me )


Wehrmacht wrote:

And by the way (maybe a strange question, but hell) - did any of the modules ever introduced Fallschirmjagers (german paratroopers)? I kinda like this formation and I'm wondering how a Operation Merkur (for instance) or fights for Monte Cassino would look like in ASL.

Great help of yours, gotta start hunting for module #2!


Can't speak for the official modules by MMP - I know there were US - Paratroopers with "Paratroopers (sic)". I would assume there should be some in the German package.

On the other hand there are 3rd vendors (f. ex. Heat of Battle with Kreta: Operation Merkur or Critical Hit) that might have what you are looking for.

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James Lowry
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Wehrmacht wrote:
And by the way (maybe a strange question, but hell) - did any of the modules ever introduced Fallschirmjagers (german paratroopers)? I kinda like this formation and I'm wondering how a Operation Merkur (for instance) or fights for Monte Cassino would look like in ASL.

They're not a specific squad type. They're generally just represented by 468 elite squads. There are rules for for paradrops and glider landings in Chapter E.

There's been quite a few scenarios involving Crete. Six of the ones in For King and Country take place there, and I think four of them deal with the initial glider landings.
 
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Joao Lima
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Heat of Battle also publishes a module entirely dedicated to Crete.

http://gator921.hostgator.com/~ap88ll/kreta.php

Not something for the beginner though.
 
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Patroclus
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I second the motion of trying out the ASLSKs. I was tempted to buy the fullblown ASL, but I found the ASLSKs to be a perfect fit for what I want in a WWII tactical wargame (detailed but not overdone, good rulebook).
good luck!
 
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B. Marsh
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For very little cash you can get into the feel of the game with a used copy of SL, the rules are easy to learn and are presented in modules that allow you to learn as you go. You can start game play the same day you start with the rules. Also, you will find plenty of opponents on VASSAL, PBEM is a great way to learn.

The ASLSK are also good and they are affordable too. I would start with them before going fully into ASL.

In any event, the game is as realistic as any other tactical war game, and worth the effort in time and money.

I would also suggest a look at ATS too.

Just my 2 cents..
 
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