I've looked through the forums and read Jay Richardson's excellent tutorial on ROF and Defensive Fire, but I'm still having problems understanding just how "independent" a Support Weapon (SW) is from its manning squads.
1. In the Prep Fire Phase (PFPh): I believe I can fire the MG against one target, the squad's inherent firepower against a second target. Is this correct? I can't find anything in the rulebook explicitly allowing this, but it makes sense to me because I know that if the MG is firegrouped with the squad's inherent firepower and makes Rate of Fire (ROF), it can change target for its future attack(s). Plus, I assume that bazookas (I forget if those are actually in SK1) can be targeted against something other than what the squad is firing at (especially since they aren't even allowed to firegroup with squads rolling on the IFT), and I extend the analogy to all SWs.
(If I'm wrong about 1., then the rest is probably moot...)
So for the following suppositions, for simplicity I'll assume there are four moving enemy units, and nobody moves adjacent to the defending unit (so Final Protective Fire not applicable), and that the defending unit has a single MG at its disposal.
2. When an enemy moves, can I choose to use only the MG to attack it? If so, is only the MG marked with a Defensive First Fire (DFF) counter?
3. Does that then imply that later, against another moving enemy unit, I can use the squad's inherent firepower at full strength, only then marking the firing squad with a First Fire counter? (So now both squad and MG are marked First Fire)
4. Then, against another moving unit, can I use the MG alone as Sustained Fire, marking only it with a Final Fire counter?
5. And finally, can the possessing squad then take, against a fourth moving unit, its own Final Fire shot?
If all of the above is possible, it doesn't make sense to me - because if I did them in a different order, if in Step 4 the squad fired its inherent firepower as Final Fire without using the MG, I know that any SW, even if not fired, is marked with Final Fire. It doesn't make sense to me that I should get one less shot just because the order was changed.
So I assume my chain of reasoning in 2-5 is flawed?
Regarding point 1, you are correct.
This flowchart should help with the rest of your queries:
If you use SFF, whether only IFP or only MG or both, both the squad and its MG are marked Final Fire.
Inherent FP and SW are marked separately only in the case of first fire. Whenever one or the other (or both as a firegroup) makes a SFF attack, both are marked with final fire.
So 2 and 3 are correct, but not the rest.
Just some additional clarifications:
- If you obtain a cowering result in any of the attacks, the unit and all its possesions are marked with a final fire counter, not just the counter that actually fired.
- A leader directing fire can also direct fire of any subset of the original directed attack. So if for example, your first shot is with both the squad FP and the MG, then the leader could direct further attacks with the MG if it kept ROF, and SFF/FPF attacks of either/both squad and MG. But if your first directed attack is only with the MG, then any following attack invlolving also the squad FP cannot be directed.
- In SFF you may use MGs, but in FPF you must use all available MGs.
Hope this helps.
The First Fire Flowchart was a great help when I started ASLSK1. Just ignore the reference to Fire Lanes; as of now they only show up in the ASL rule book. If you are still having problems or just want to get a clearer understanding of how things work you should you use Jay Richardson’s excellent tutorial:
Once I had finished working through the examples, I replaced the 3 American 6-6-6 squads with 7-4-7s and played a few times seeing if I could take the building.
Hope you find this useful.