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Commands & Colors: Napoleonics» Forums » Rules

Subject: Retire and reform question rss

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John Haag
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Hello,

Lets say a cavalry has moved next to an infantry and declared a Melee.
If the infantry plays a First Strike, can the cavalry Retire and Reform?

The rules suggest that the Retire and Reform is used after a melee during the opponents turn. But, I am having trouble finding a prohibition in the rules to the above situation.

Thanks
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my eye
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Suulthanaur wrote:
Hello,

Lets say a cavalry has moved next to an infantry and declared a Melee.
If the infantry plays a First Strike, can the cavalry Retire and Reform?

The rules suggest that the Retire and Reform is used after a melee during the opponents turn. But, I am having trouble finding a prohibition in the rules to the above situation.

Thanks


Retire and Reform is a decision to evade rather than potentially battle back and is in response to being attacked. In this situation the Cavalry can't Retire and Reform -- it has already declared it's intentions to battle. The First Strike simply reverses the order of battle -- Battle Back/Attack instead of Attack/Battle Back. Note that if the Infantry elects to First Strike it forfeits the option of going into square.
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Kevin Duke
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If you will check the rules, you will find the questions addressed directly and specifically. This isn't about "suggest" and needs no interpretation.
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Guillaume Gleize
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And you said it yourself: "... during the opponents turn" ... and here it's YOUR TURN!
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Robert Taylor-Smith
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Okotoks
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Sounds like the cavalry commander got a bad case of 'Attackers Regret'.
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Robert Taylor-Smith
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earache wrote:
Note that if the Infantry elects to First Strike it forfeits the option of going into square.


I don't agree with the above comment.

The infantry can go into square and play the First Strike card. The fact is the square already gets to fire first making the play of the card kind of pointless UNLESS the infantry player just wants to get the card out of hand and replaced before his turn. The infantry would only roll one die.

If the infantry played the First Strike card after deciding not to go into square then it would get the full melee dice amount against the cavalry.

The sequence:
(1) Cavalry declares attack,
(2) Infantry decides if it wants to form square, the player must have at least two cards.
(3) The cavalry player draws random card from player forming square,
(4) The infantry player decides if he wants to play First Strike, assuming it wasn't the random card pulled,
(5) Square and/or First Strike infantry unit rolls melee die or dice first otherwise the cavalry rolls the first melee dice.

In other words play of a First Strike card does not rulewise prevent the forming of square.
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my eye
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flapjackmachine wrote:
earache wrote:
Note that if the Infantry elects to First Strike it forfeits the option of going into square.


I don't agree with the above comment.


You are right, of course (though I can think of no good reason to cycle out a first strike card). What I meant to say is that if the defender plays the FS card he can't then go into square, and must follow the order sequence you describe. And the cavalry can't Retire and Reform as it is still the attacker.

Edited to clarify.
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Rauli Kettunen
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flapjackmachine wrote:
The infantry can go into square and play the First Strike card. The fact is the square already gets to fire first making the play of the card kind of pointless UNLESS the infantry player just wants to get the card out of hand and replaced before his turn. The infantry would only roll one die.


Isn't the card for square random draw? So infantry player can't be guaranteed of getting rid of his FF.
 
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Read the rulebook, plan for all contingencies, and…read the rulebook again.
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flapjackmachine wrote:
earache wrote:
Note that if the Infantry elects to First Strike it forfeits the option of going into square.


I don't agree with the above comment.

The infantry can go into square and play the First Strike card. The fact is the square already gets to fire first making the play of the card kind of pointless UNLESS the infantry player just wants to get the card out of hand and replaced before his turn. The infantry would only roll one die.

If the infantry played the First Strike card after deciding not to go into square then it would get the full melee dice amount against the cavalry.

The sequence:
(1) Cavalry declares attack,
(2) Infantry decides if it wants to form square, the player must have at least two cards.
(3) The cavalry player draws random card from player forming square,
(4) The infantry player decides if he wants to play First Strike, assuming it wasn't the random card pulled,
(5) Square and/or First Strike infantry unit rolls melee die or dice first otherwise the cavalry rolls the first melee dice.

In other words play of a First Strike card does not rulewise prevent the forming of square.


Looking at the rules, this is the sequence of resolving Melee Combat (p.10):

1. Announce Melee Combat "...If the defender holds a First Strike card, it will be played when the melee combat is declared, before attacker battle dice are rolled."

2. Cavalry Retire and Reform:

3. Defending Infantry Form Square:

4. Determine Strength of the Attack: ...etc.,

I think if a defender holds First Strike, they have to play it when the cavalry announces the their intended target. If it's infantry, the defending player is either going to play First Strike or elect to Form Square. Either way, they'll get to roll first against the attacking player's cavalry.

And, no, the attacking cavalry does not get to Retire and Reform if First Strike is played. First Strike reverses the order that the battle dice are rolled, not the roles of who is attacking and who is defending. If the infantry were attacking the cavalry in a First Strike situation, the defending player would either have to decide to play First Strike or Retire and Reform, terrain and an open two-hex path permitting.

The sequence technically dictates that players must make the decision to attack, First Strike, Retire and Reform, and Form Square before calculating the number of dice for the attack and rolling the dice. I usually play "nice" and will say, "Okay, the Heavy Cav' is hitting your Line Infantry there with 5 dice. Three for the blocks, plus one for Heavy Cav', plus one more for Cavalry Charge. You got a First Strike for me? Or are you going to Form Square?"

Sometimes I say, "Okay, my Heavy Cav' is hitting that Line Infantry. Got a First Strike you want to play? Or do you want to Form Square?" Quite often, my opponent will ask, "How many dice are you throwing?" If I tell them, I'm technically skipping a decision step. If I say, "You need to decide first," then there's a pause while they do the math. I've gotten into the habit of just factoring it up front and telling them.
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Kevin Duke
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What Brady said!

Note for Rauli

Quote:
Isn't the card for square random draw? So infantry player can't be guaranteed of getting rid of his FF.


I think the point was playing the FS to get rid of it, not forming square and hoping it would be drawn.

I seldom think of getting rid of a FS unless it is something really juicy or terrible. I will say getting a FS on the opening draw changes things, especially if you have one of those short-handed commanders.
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Angelus Seniores
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just one question regarding the timing when you play first strike, which is a little confusing.

must you play it directly as combat is declared or at any time in the sequence, as long as you play it before the dice are rolled?
the rules seem to suggest both.
 
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