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Sergeants Miniatures Game: Day of Days» Forums » Rules

Subject: Victory Point allocation in Friendly Fire situations rss

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Angus McEachran
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A recent thread about the results of a prisoner receiving hits from his former comrades made me think about the allocation of VPs in such situations.

Prisoners are worth double VPs for the captor. What is to stop the former controlling player shooting at a prisoner and escort, hoping to kill the prisoner and deny the other side those double VPs (and any bonus VPs from Order cards rewarding prisoner capture?)

It seems to be a no risk scenario for the player whose man has been captured. At worst, the other side is denied their bonus VPs, and at best the escort is killed and the prisoner escapes.

Any thoughts about this situation? Would allocating the bonus VPs anyway if a prisoner is killed by friendly fire alleviate this and restore the risk/reward balance to firing at prisoners and escorts?

Edit: I just had another read of the rules. Under the "KIA" combat result, the rules say to allocate the VP value of a killed soldier to the opposing player that killed them. Again, this raises questions about firing where there is a chance of killing your own men ie shooting into close combat.

Killing your own man in such a case would deny your opponent the VP reward for his death, with the chance to gain VPs if you kill the enemy soldier.

Perhaps we need a rule to the effect that if a soldier dies to friendly fire, all opponents receive the the VP reward for the death, and I would add that the controlling player also LOSES the equivalent number of VPs if that dead soldier was a POW at the time of death.

This gives the same VP shift in cases where a prisoner is killed as if they were successfully captured, and seriously makes players think twice about firing into close combat.
 
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Jeff Billings
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It is a perfectly acceptable tactic to try and rescue your captured soldier. The only critical restriction is that you must be at Close range to shoot into a captured force.

About the only place I allow friendly fire is either captured prisoners or a required event.

As far as VP assignment you cannot score VP for shooting your own soldiers.
 
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Angus McEachran
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Shooting into a close combat fight or prisoner/escort is allowed within Close range. My point was that if a player has a soldier captured, there is no risk involved for them if they fire at the escort. It becomes the default position to always fire at escorts, because you have nothing to lose and a lot to gain. There are no negative outcomes possible. Kill the escort is great, prisoner freed and VPs for the kill. Kill the prisoner, deny those capture VPs to you opponent, good result. Hit both prisoner and escort, get VPs for killing the escort and deny the opponent the bonus VPs for capturing which is again a positive result.

I don't object to allowing rescue attempts, but it seems open to abuse in terms of manipulating VPs with no risk of a negative outcome. It seems to me to be a no brainer: if you get the chance fire at the captured soldier(technically speaking you fire at his escort) because it doesn't matter if you kill him. All you can ever do is improve your situation. This VP system actually benefits you if you kill your own men when they are captured.

A similar situation occurs when firing at a close combat: if you kill your own soldier, you deny his VPs to you opponent. There is more risk here, since you lose an active soldier from your roster, but there is still the potential to manipulate VP availability by killing your own men.
 
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Mayor Jim
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Jeff Billings wrote:
It is a perfectly acceptable tactic to try and rescue your captured soldier. The only critical restriction is that you must be at Close range to shoot into a captured force.

About the only place I allow friendly fire is either captured prisoners or a required event.

As far as VP assignment you cannot score VP for shooting your own soldiers.


True...but you would still deny the VP for the enemy capturing your man. Maybe award the kill points to the enemy? That's still less than capturing. This probably needs a little tightening up...
 
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Kevin Duke
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Ive always thought it should be very discouraging to shoot your own people...
 
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Mayor Jim
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Kevin,
That's very true...but for the rules "lawyers" it seems to make sense in this situation...maybe need a rule "tweak" here? E.g. If captured and then killed by friendly fire, the captured victory points still count...just a suggestion...
 
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Jerry Tresman
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If captured and killed then VP awarded to the enemy as normal. They haven't fulfilled the exit strategy to gain any more.

The higher the soldier value the more important it is to provide a suitable escort. Squads were often tasked with capturing the enemy for the intelligence units especially on big operations.

This may well be part of a scenario orders or a requirement to gain a win depending on VP lost and VP available, leaving a pinned or wounded 6VP soldier on his own would not be a good idea.
 
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Mayor Jim
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Hmmm...so you're saying just kill all your guys who may be about to fall into enemy hands? ...don't know if I really want you as my team leader cry While legal, this seems "gamey" to me...

I understand that one needs to protect a high value asset (captured/ prisoner). But that could still lead folks to make an assault to kill the prisoner to reduce the VP total...I think this rule still needs some work. In real life, if Jerry where captured, we'd try to free him, if possible...but not take him out to reduce VP totals.
 
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Rob Koch
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I think shooting at the captors would be permissible (which has the chance of hitting a friendly) but just shooting at a friendly directly is not only "gamey" but downright wrong in any sense.

Situations occur that can not be planned for in any game system of moderate or higher complexity (which is where I place SMG). I know that there are rules lawyers (of which I have been on occasion whistle) that prefer the exact detail versus the "spirit of the game" (a ambiguous definition that varies by player).

I've found it best to move into hand to hand to free the prisoners whenever possible and only shoot if I have to. Obviously the higher the value the captive the more likely I am to shoot first. I'd rather toss a grenade anyway as I can better target those anyway.

I try to play the rules as if they would be used in a tournament since learning house rules leads to doing things differently if I had to play others using another set of rules.

-Rob K.
 
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Jeff Pseudonym
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I don't see a problem with the rules. There could be the case of someone having important info that must not fall into enemy hands. Think of the movie Windtalkers.

Even without abstract reasons why, it boils down to; is the player going to spend his moves and shoots trying to goal keep lost VPs or work on his own objectives?

I can see tossing a nade though, assuming the intercepting soldier is not spotted. I would think about targeting both with it, that way if I miss the enemy I might still deny points by killing the POW.

-Jeff M.
 
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Mayor Jim
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Well, bottom line for me is...if I'm captured I'd expect to be saved not fragged Tossing a grenade to "save" me seems a bit extreme!
 
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