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Subject: Card driven version of ASL? rss

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Gus I
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Is this game like a card driven version of ASL? I have been playing ASL for decades but the rules can intimidate newbies.

 
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Scott
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Not even close. CC is a lot of fun but very different from ASL. It replicates the chaos of the battlefield, so you don't have the control like you have in ASL.
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Jim Cote
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CC has Fire Attacks, Movement, Defensive Fire, Advance, Routing, Rallying (Recovery), Close Combat, Smoke, etc., but none of these actions occur in a specific sequence. Instead they appear on cards. If you don't have a move card, you cannot move. If you don't have a fire card, you cannot fire. Because of this, you will often see units not moving even though it is obvious that they should. You will often see multiple units do nothing as the enemy walks right by them in open ground. So, if you want to move and have no move cards, your entire turn might be discarding your limit of cards and drawing new ones.
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Antonio B-D
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Quick answer. No.

Long answer. A long time ASL player has designed this game, so there are similarities. This game is quick, fun and enganging, but so is ASL.

If you like the wild "hollywood-esque" effects in ASL you will love this game as that part multiplies tenfold. If you like the sheer volume of knowledge in ASL and tanks, you should look elsewhere.
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Tanks Alot
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Conflict of Heroes may be more up your ally
 
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Brad Miller
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No, it's like Up Front with a map and chits.
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Mark Buetow
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I have the ASL Starter Kits but have found them to be much tougher to learn than CC. The ASLSKs rules are detailed but not reference-friendly IMHO.

CC is not a card driven Wargame in the usual sense of big picture, ops points and/or events. The closest description would be to consider an ASL game in which the units on the board are limited to doing what the cards in your hand allow. But the cards also give you random events and other happenings similar to die rolls in ASL (for example snipers and leader/hero creation).

The other thing that some find frustrating is the lack of vehicles in the game.

CC is fast playing. I don't play enough of the ASLSKs to be proficient but CC is always easy to get into even after a week or two without playing.
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Steve Duke
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I have often described it to people as 'Squad Leader and Up Front combined', talking the base SL game from years ago and not ASL.

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Jim F
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If you're the control freak/accountant style of player you'll probably hate it angry

I find it rewards good play and you don't experience that long drawn out slide into defeat as the balance tips against you. Games can be won even when it feels impossible. The narrative it creates bears a close resemblance to first hand accounts that I've read.

Does that mean it resembles ASL? You need to make your own mind up
 
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Borat Sagdiyev
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ekted wrote:
Because of this, you will often see units not moving even though it is obvious that they should.


I wouldn't say it's so obvious given the time scale of the game (10-30 seconds per turn).

Quote:
You will often see multiple units do nothing as the enemy walks right by them in open ground.


Only if you don't pay enough care and attention to hand management.

Quote:
So, if you want to move and have no move cards, your entire turn might be discarding your limit of cards and drawing new ones.


It's often wiser and more effective to do something else with your cards by performing another type of order/action with other units.

As with most CDGs the cards limit what the players can do at a certain extent. But it's also up to the players to get the best possible outcome out of every given hand.
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Edward Wehrenberg
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Why does it have to BE like anything? It's just a great game.

There's a reason it's so well-loved. Get it and enjoy it my friend!
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Jim Cote
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harzal wrote:
ekted wrote:
Because of this, you will often see units not moving even though it is obvious that they should.


I wouldn't say it's so obvious given the time scale of the game (10-30 seconds per turn).

Quote:
You will often see multiple units do nothing as the enemy walks right by them in open ground.


Only if you don't pay enough care and attention to hand management.

Quote:
So, if you want to move and have no move cards, your entire turn might be discarding your limit of cards and drawing new ones.


It's often wiser and more effective to do something else with your cards by performing another type of order/action with other units.

As with most CDGs the cards limit what the players can do at a certain extent. But it's also up to the players to get the best possible outcome out of every given hand.

I like the game okay, but the above is just making excuses. They are the same excuses used in M44, etc. The cards limit what the players can do 100%. You may only do what's on the cards. If the only thing that helps is to move/fire, and you do not draw one of those cards through the entire deck, then you can't even TRY to do what you want to do. Many cards are completely useless in some situations. You can have a hand that you can do nothing with. Your only option is to draw. It's happened to me more than once (not a game turn, but an entire game).
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Borat Sagdiyev
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Of course, the CC system has its flaws and limitations. But I think that you're exaggerating those quite a bit.

To compare CC card play with M44's or say that you only drew hand after hand for an entire game are just crude caricatures.

But this is a dead horse that has been beaten way too many times in BGG and other forums.

I'd simply suggest the OP not to pay too much attention to stark praise or criticism and judge the game by himself.

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Scott Muldoon (silentdibs)
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I'll play the iconoclast here and say that Combat Commander was very clearly rooted in ASL at the outset of design. However, in nearly every detail there are slight differences between the two games. Anyone who has played ASL will recognize the names of the events, the logic behind certain rules, etc. Naturally, using the mediator of cards instead of a sequence of play changes the nature of play dramatically, as does the absence of vehicles. Still, the ASL heritage of CC is obvious to anyone who has played both.

Saying it is "Up Front with a board and chits" is not much of an argument against this, since Up Front is "The Squad Leader card game".

I play and enjoy both games, so none of this is meant as a slight against either system. They occupy close but distinct places in the domain of tactical WW2 wargaming (unlike Conflict of Heroes, which is rather fundamentally different.)
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Brent Pollock
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Ya beat me to it.

I'd list it as:
1 part SL
1 part ASL
1 part UF
1 part SASL
1 part screw-this-I'm-making-my-own-game

Now to see if Chad is going to chime in and tell us what it really is.

 
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Christopher
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WBRP wrote:


Now to see if Chad is going to chime in and tell us what it really is.



He already did:

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/article/1266084#1266084

"When designing CC I utilized many inspirations from Ambush, ASL, Squad Leader and Up Front (plus a smattering of other games but these four provided a lot of grist for the mill, so to speak). I also garnered information from popular culture (read: stereotypes), books and the internet (Wikipedia being a big help here, even if only as a starting space). And, of course, I infused a large amount of my own insane ideas. Put all this in a blender, set on high for 30 seconds, and out pours CC as you know it today."
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Patrick Kairns
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ASL GRT HOP JJG LOL SGT KUG ASP......

You won't find acronym hell in CC (did that on purpose.....LOL!!!)

Combat Commander is a nail biter & heart thumper, probably like ASL. I just can't get past all the acronyms in ASL.

Great rule set. Easy to learn. Up & playing in 10-15 minutes with a good teacher.

Have fun, whatever you choose.
 
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Jim Cote
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XoKo wrote:
I just can't get past all the acronyms in ASL.

Skimming the CC:E rulebook, I see: FP, LOS, MP, OB, SR, and VP.

If CC:E had as many procedural concepts as ASL, you'd appreciate them not being spelled out every time. After a couple of games, you don't even have to remember what FFNAM is in words; the letters almost become an icon in your mind, in the same way that Chinese and other languages use "pictures" for words. And the fact that there is no FFNAM in CC:E is one of the many reasons we are even having this discussion.
 
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jay white
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charlescab wrote:
Conflict of Heroes may be more up your ally


Or not. The OP didn't give enough information to know that he would prefer CoH. I far prefer CC to Conflict of Heroes.
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Mark Buetow
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ekted wrote:
And the fact that there is no FFNAM in CC:E is one of the many reasons we are even having this discussion.


Sure it does. It's why units break when the Fire Attack ties the Defensive Roll and the unit is moving.
 
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Jim Cote
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Malacandra wrote:
ekted wrote:
And the fact that there is no FFNAM in CC:E is one of the many reasons we are even having this discussion.

Sure it does. It's why units break when the Fire Attack ties the Defensive Roll and the unit is moving.

Well yes, but I meant the bigger picture of structured Defensive Fire.
 
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Mark Buetow
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ekted wrote:
Malacandra wrote:
ekted wrote:
And the fact that there is no FFNAM in CC:E is one of the many reasons we are even having this discussion.

Sure it does. It's why units break when the Fire Attack ties the Defensive Roll and the unit is moving.

Well yes, but I meant the bigger picture of structured Defensive Fire.


I'm just messin' but I figured that's what you meant. Truth be told, when I began learning the ASL SKs, that was really difficult to get a handle on. I'm sure it'd become second nature with a lot of play.

The fact that CC doesn't have that tricky level of detail is what makes it easier and more fun to play. Well, at least to learn; but I find that the time it would take to review the ASLSK rules just on fire ops is easier spent playing CC.

I think the Actions such as Concealment, Crossfire, Hand Grenades and so forth make the CC system easy to play.

In any case, everyone likes different things and we should be glad there's so much variety to encourage all types in the hobby.
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Yep, I used to have all the main ASL modules and spent about a year learning the system. When my main opponent moved away I, put them on the shelf for a few years.

One day I decided I wanted to get back into the system and got out the manuals. After hours of trying to relearn the system by playing a solo practice game I put it away for good and sold them all shortly after.

CC:E might have some flaws but they are far outweighed by the accessibility of the system. I get so much bang for the buck and effort that ASL just doesn't compare.

Besides I think the "realism" of ASL is a mirage. I think any real commander would say that the bird's eye view of the battle field with your cardboard soldiers mindlessly obeying your clockwork orders is far more unrealistic than a squad that decides it doesn't want to fire on an advancing enemy and keeps their heads down daring to disobey what you can see would be the best course of action. The fact that things don't always go according to plan is what makes this system great.
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Jim Cote
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While your opinion of the two games from your own point of view is clearly valid, I think that you are mischaracterizing the comparison.

capadotia wrote:
Besides I think the "realism" of ASL is a mirage.

I don't necessarily care for realism in a wargame. What I want is for me as a player to be in the same position of making decisions as the "fictional leader" in the game system who is making the decisions. Every wargame has higher-scale and lower-scale abstractions. That is, the game focuses on the details of a very specific scale. In Europe Engulfed, you don't care about an individual soldier getting shot in the leg. In ASL, you don't care about next month's fuel supply being cut off. CC:E puts the abstraction between me, the fictional leader, and the game. To me, the idea that "the cards really give you the feeling of lack of control just like a real battle" sounds really lame. In truth, it's probably more like "we wanted to include all the common wargame concepts without the complexity and this is what we ended up with". However, this comes at a cost. In ASL, I can at least TRY to do stuff. In CC:E, I usually can't even try to do what I want. It doesn't feel like my orders are getting lost or being disobeyed. It feels like I am locked in a room unable to speak at all. If you really wanted the uncertainty of orders getting through or being carried out, there are simple ways to design that in that make sense. The designers wanted the feel of a card-driven game. That's fine. There's no need to make excuses for it.

capadotia wrote:
I think any real commander would say that the bird's eye view of the battle field with your cardboard soldiers mindlessly obeying your clockwork orders is far more unrealistic...

ASL units do not mindlessly obey. In ASL, it is virtually impossible for a unit to charge a heavy machine gun nest from a few hexes away across open ground. In CC:E, it can be very easy. In fact, it can be impossible to prevent. Sound realistic?

capadotia wrote:
...than a squad that decides it doesn't want to fire on an advancing enemy and keeps their heads down daring to disobey what you can see would be the best course of action.

ASL has lots of concepts that cover this kind of thing (broken units, pinned units, malfunctioning/broken weapons, cowering) in addition to simple no-effect results. The difference is that, in ASL, the uncertainty of battle is a RESULT of your choices instead of a pre-ordained limitation.

capadotia wrote:
The fact that things don't always go according to plan is what makes this system great.

This is perfectly true of ASL as well.
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Russ Williams
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ekted wrote:
capadotia wrote:
The fact that things don't always go according to plan is what makes this system great.

This is perfectly true of ASL as well.

This is perfectly true of any decent game.

Even in games of no chance and no hidden information, things often don't go according to plan, at least for me.
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