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45thdiv13 Jun 2014 4:14 p.m. PST

I have never played the older version from years past, but having heard some good reviews about the game and that it was d10 based, it piqued my interest.

I have had the hard copy for about a week now. It is a trade paperback size, which I think is good. The QRS is a good quality card stock that has the needed items to play the game. It folds out to an 8.5 x 11 double sided sheet.

The print font is a good size and easy to read.

There are lots of errors in the text from typos to poor grammatical errors. There are examples of play that are out of place, missing some clarification or just plan missing.

There is talk of a "special" move and how you roll a 10 sided die and add that to the movement of the unit. But when would my unit want to do a special move? Are there any negative impacts for making a special move?

For morale, it is easy to understand how a unit gains morale points and the maximum number of morale points that a unit can have. This is where missing examples hurt. From what I can make out, once you take a single morale point, you can no longer use that unit. You have to roll on the morale table every turn. It seems from the text, but again it is unclear due to typos, that even if you don't want to activate a unit you must roll on the morale table every turn for each unit that has at least one moral point against it.

The example listed talks about wanting to move into rough terrain and needing to roll on the morale table. It ends up having to stop just outside of the terrain without entering. But looking at the morale table, there is no way to achieve that result based upon the results available.

I wish there had been an editor, who had no knowledge of the rules, given this set to proof read prior to print.

It is a $25 USD set of rules. Even just a PDF version is $20. USD

I do not think these rules are worth half this price. They just feel clumsy and frustrating to read and decipher.

I have not regretted a purchase in a long while. Perhaps, if I had not spent close to say, what Black Powder costs on Amazon these days, I would not feel so let down

Matthew

JonFreitag13 Jun 2014 4:25 p.m. PST

Matthew, is this the "On to Richmond" first published in the Courier by Paul Koch and then recently updated by Scale Creep?

45thdiv13 Jun 2014 4:58 p.m. PST

Yes,

That is the one.

45thdiv13 Jun 2014 4:59 p.m. PST

And I was really excited about it too.

Who asked this joker13 Jun 2014 6:35 p.m. PST

Hi Matthew,

I thought the rules were pretty clear.

Special moves may be done at any time. The unit making the special move must be in clear (non-disrupting) terrain for the full move. When you make a special move, you MUST move the full distance. The exception is that you don't have to move the full move when charging to contact. If you are charging with a special move and fall short, you get a morale marker.

When you roll on the morale table, you remove 1 morale marker regardless of the result. The unit can't then move. The reaction on the table is its move for that turn. Of course, a result may state that the unit moves as it wishes.

The morale pass that a commander has removes ALL morale markers. The unit may not move aggressively that turn but still may fire if the unit is in range.

For the terrain roll, you roll on the terrain table. If you fail, you stop at the edge of the terrain and get the morale marker. It doesn't explicitly say terrain table but there is a terrain table on the QRS.

There may be typos but I did not spot them. I surprise there since I am not a natural grammarian. However, I did think the rules covered all the points.

Now for my own observations.
I did not like the accumulated morale markers. I prefer the old system where you get a morale marker and are faced with the choice of rolling or using one of your morale passes. Also, I don't remember the commander having to attach to the unit to use a morale pass. I've always played that he could use them if they were within his command radius.

The old game had the Confederates being a cut above the Yanks. I like the optional morale stats where you roll based on the division commander's rating. A poltroon's division would perform worse than a fire brand's division.

If you think that a unit should suffer from multiple disorder results Ed Mohrmann suggested to me that each extra disorder above the first causes the unit in question to fall back 6" per marker. Another way is to have each extra marker cause a slight penalty to the morale roll. Something like -2 or -3.

I tell you Matthew, it is a really fun game. Mark has done a good job reorganizing the rules and adding all the variants.

John

Rdfraf Supporting Member of TMP13 Jun 2014 6:35 p.m. PST

Well, I was excited too but in this day and age, a set of gaming rules that has not been properly edited is just unprofessional. Paul Koch wrote a delightful set of rules and to have someone ruin it with misspellings, poor grammar and serious omissions does him a grave disservice.

I hope they can at least fix it in the PDF.

45thdiv13 Jun 2014 7:02 p.m. PST

Wow John,

I did not see anything about removing the morale markers after each test on the morale table. I will go back and have a look.

It is almost as if we read two different rules. :-)

Matthew

Who asked this joker13 Jun 2014 8:10 p.m. PST

It is almost as if we read two different rules. :-)

You need a couple of passes through the rules I think to get it all. To be fair, I did not catch that the morale pass still removed all morale tokens until after your post and I've actually played the thing a few times in my life! grin

One more thing. I do think the price for the PDF is a little high. I paid $15 USD for the Pre-order PDF. I think that is a good fair price for the PDF given the amount of extras in the book.

79thPA Supporting Member of TMP14 Jun 2014 6:57 a.m. PST

@45th: I'm not having the problems you are having. Perhaps a new read with a fresh set of eyes? I've just glanced over these, but I haven't noticed any typos. When I have time I will read them from cover to cover and compare them with the magazine edition of the rules. Unfortunately, I lost my commercial copy of the rules years ago. Hopefully this edition clears a few things up; they do give a good game (we played these fairly regularly decades ago).

45thdiv14 Jun 2014 7:10 a.m. PST

I went back and read the morale section again. Page 24 has an example that I don't think follows the rules, of if it does there is a bit of information missing.

@79thPA – I do hope you are correct about just needing to play through the rules to grasp them. I read rules from start to finish to see how a turn plays out.

I still find the rules as written to be cumbersome to follow. I will say again, that someone not familiar with the rules should have proof read them to make sure they could understand how the game is played and also where clarification of the rules needs to be expanded a bit.

I will also restate that these rules are not a good value for $25. USD I understand the need due to printing a low run, but I was electing a lot more based up reviews and comments regarding these rules from when they were originally published.

Matthew

john lacour14 Jun 2014 7:13 p.m. PST

i'll very happily wait for "across a deadly field" by john hill…

Personal logo Extra Crispy Sponsoring Member of TMP14 Jun 2014 10:05 p.m. PST

@45thDiv:

I am sorry you are disappointed with your purchase. Assuming the book is in new condition you may return it for a refund (as is always the case with any purchase from Scale Creep Miniatures).

I am out of the country until the 28th but will be happy to take care of the matter upon my return.

Regards,

Mark "Extra Crispy" Severin
Scale Creep Miniatures

Personal logo Extra Crispy Sponsoring Member of TMP14 Jun 2014 10:10 p.m. PST

Clarification: About the example on Page 24:

It is only meant to illustrate that a unit may not have more than 3 morale markers. One way to acquire a morale marker is to fail to enter certain terrain. But if you already have 3 markers, you do not acquire the 4th.

For entering terrain, you do not roll on the Morale Table. You roll on the Movement Table (see page 67, bottom).

45thdiv15 Jun 2014 4:09 a.m. PST

Hi Mark,

I thank you for your offer to refund, but no need. I buy rules all the time, some work for me and some don't. I will see if these can work for me.

One clarification on morale that I would like an example on. using the Morale table states that if you want to perform and operation with a unit you must check morale first. Then it says in the next sentence that any unit with a morale marker must check morale even if the commander does not want to activate that unit this turn.

So basically you are saying that at the start of your turn you check morale for every unit with at least one marker.

Then perform the results found on the morale table based on the die roll.

Or is it that you check morale for the units you want to activate first, hoping to get a "no effect" result so you can do what you want with the unit. Then, after all the units you wanted to activate are completed do you check the others units that still contain morale markers to see what they will do on their own.

Jumping over to special movement. Why would I ever not want to use this? It looks to me that there is no issue with doing this. Sure, I can not go into disrupting terrain, but it seems like a better option to get my troops up faster and not have the double time movement issues if I use that more than once.

Matthew

Who asked this joker15 Jun 2014 6:40 a.m. PST

Jumping over to special movement. Why would I ever not want to use this?

If you use special move you have to (MUST) move the full distance.

EXAMPLE I make a move and decide to do a special move. But I don't want to come within musketry range of the enemy. But I roll high and the final amount of movement is greater than I want to move. I have to move that amount and end up in musketry range.

If you charge using a special move and fall short, you get a morale marker.

If you make a regular move, you can move any distance up to the full amount of your regular move.

Personal logo Extra Crispy Sponsoring Member of TMP15 Jun 2014 12:12 p.m. PST

Matthew:

Yes, essentially when you activate a division every unit with a morale marker must make a morale check.

Regards,

Mark

Personal logo vonLoudon Supporting Member of TMP16 Jul 2014 7:45 a.m. PST

I sort of ask why bother. I have seen discussions of how great the original was and wonder why it can't be played as it was with a couple of tweeks or house rules. I love the old rulesets but I'm a little old too.

greenknight4 Sponsoring Member of TMP26 Dec 2016 6:27 p.m. PST

Are these still available? I went to t he Extra Crispy site but sadly for me the site is unusable and makes no sense. I couldn't find them.

TY Chris

tommyb298527 Dec 2016 12:48 a.m. PST
Rev Zoom27 Dec 2016 8:51 a.m. PST

The original is excellent and a lot of fun. If you go up on Wargame vault, you can find the Courier issue with the included rules. And, a couple issues later, you can find the tweaks which the author Paul Koch added. One of the best – and in my opinion, mandatory – changes or tweaks is making the morale table rule leader quality dependent rather than troop quality dependent.

In the original a brigade for role for morale results by its quality lever – Green, Regular, so forth – with the officer quality (Poltroon, Cautious, Aggressive, Firebrand, Exceptional) being a modifier. It the changed table, morale is rolled by the officer quality with troop quality being a modifier. Much more historical.

The one area which could use some tweaking is the Charge results. Way too skewed to troop quality, IMHO.

But, notwithstanding that small concern, it is still one of the best sets of Civil War rules around. That it has lasted so long is a testament to its quality, "feel" and simplicity.

Rev Zoom27 Dec 2016 8:52 a.m. PST

FAT FINGERS! In the original, a brigade would role for morale results by its quality level….

Rev Zoom27 Dec 2016 9:41 a.m. PST

Courier Vol 3 #5 for OTR Rules
#55 for Paul Koch's discussion on command control

I can't find where the expanded morale tables are, but if anyone wishes to email me, I will send the full set of expanded OTR Tables my wargame group in Chicago (The Benedict Arnold Society) spent about 4 years testing and adjusting.

greenknight4 Sponsoring Member of TMP27 Dec 2016 12:12 p.m. PST

I still have a marked up version of the original. Sorry but the price is a bit steep for me.

Thank you though.

greenknight4 Sponsoring Member of TMP04 Jan 2017 10:40 a.m. PST

Yes I agree with you QC

Kilroy4415 Nov 2020 2:36 p.m. PST

I recently purchased a copy of the original "On To Richmond – New Revised Edition" rule book published by The Courier in 1983. I have not yet seen the recent revision published by Scale Creep Miniatures.

An interesting set of rules that I'd like very much to play BUT the morale rules are, frankly, an unplayable hot mess. What is printed in the "Morale" section in the body of the rules (pg. 14) either bears no relation to, or is not mentioned in, or directly contradicts, the information printed in the "Morale Results Table" in the QR sheets.

The rules say that morale markers are removed by dicing on the Morale Results Table or by moving a division or corps commander to the brigade and using a "morale pass." The commander eliminates "as many morale markers as he has 'morale passes'" which means that one morale pass removes one morale marker. However, neither the rules nor the Morale Results Table indicate which morale check dice scores result in a successful "pass" (i. e. remove morale markers) or how many markers are removed per successful attempt.

The rules do not mention any limit to, or maximum of, the number of morale markers a brigade may accumulate in a game turn. In the absence of guidance one is left to assume that there is no limit to the number of morale markers a given unit may accumulate in the course of a game, but an explicit statement addressing this in the rules would have been better rules writing.

The rules state that a unit which dices on the morale table and passes "may move as wished." However, while the Morale Table does not indicate at what dice score(s) a unit "passes" or "fails" a morale check, the Morale Table DOES indicate (presumably) mandatory actions for the testing unit _at every possible score_, which appears to mean that a unit which dices for morale, pass or fail, must move as directed by the result on the Morale Table, which means that a unit which dices to check morale cannot "move as wished," which then directly contradicts the part of the morale rules stating that a unit which dices a morale check and passes "may move as wished."

So, the original "On To Richmond" rules:

- do not state which scores "pass" or "fail" a diced morale check;
- do not state how many morale markers are removed by each diced "passing" morale check;
- directly contradict themselves regarding how a unit may or must move following dicing a morale check.

These oversights in the morale rules alone make the game unplayable as published without users creating their own additional "house" rules to correct these glaring errors. Presumably the authors/playtesters knew how the morale rules were supposed to work but they failed miserably to adequately transfer their knowledge to the published rules.

The original edition's incomplete and contradictory morale rules make the rules set look poor and surprisingly amateurish and derail what otherwise would be a pretty simple and fun ACW miniatures game which I'd love to play but can't because the badly-written/-edited morale rules make play impossible. I sincerely hope all of these omissions and contradictions have been corrected in the updated version, but if they haven't then I certainly wouldn't pay $25 USD for the current print version or $20 USD for the licensed download (I already paid $25 USD for my original 1983 copy).

Incidentally, if anyone can explain how the authors intended to fill in the omitted parts of the morale rules and resolve the morale rules contradiction which I mention above, thereby restoring to my rules set some semblance of actual playability, then I'd be most grateful if they'd kindly share the info with me.

Rev Zoom18 Nov 2020 9:00 a.m. PST

I'm not sure what you are reading, but the original rules are very clear:
1. A unit only receives 1 (ONE) morale marker in a turn. Not multiple. That is clearly stated.
2. Rolling on the Morale Table or an Officer using a Morale Pass removes the Morale Marker. It either then follows the mandatory result if using the Morale Table or is free to do as it wishes if a Morale Pass was used (we changed this so if a Morale Pass was used, the Marker is removed but the unit could only Deploy, not move). Again, very clear.

I am not sure what rules you are reading or in what native language, but there are no such contradictions or omissions in the original set published in the Courier by Paul Koch.

Rev Zoom18 Nov 2020 9:03 a.m. PST

In reference to "removing as many morale markers as he has passes" this means that one morale pass removes one morale marker (again, please review the rules and you will see a unit only ever and forever receives ONE morale marker in a given turn. Once an officer uses his sum total of morale passes removing that number of morale markers, units must then roll on the morale table. How could it not be any more clear?

Kilroy4424 Nov 2020 11:03 a.m. PST

Rev Zoom,

I am reading the OTR rules from an original OTR "New Revised Edition" rules booklet published in 1983 by The Courier Publishing Co., Inc. and which I recently purchased second-hand in excellent condition. The rules booklet is in English and English happens to be my native/first language.

If the version that was published in "The Courier" magazine is clear and specific about the morale rules where the 1983 rules booklet is not then I rejoice, but I don't have the magazine version, so telling me how clear the rules are in the magazine version doesn't really help me decipher and use for play the subsequent 1983 rules booklet I DO have. Neither does it help me to use the rule booklet I have to tell me about rules in a version I don't have which apparently contradict rules in the version I do have. So if you can help me find the rules you mention in the rules booklet I have then that is appreciated, but it is useless to lecture me about what is stated in a version of the rules to which I have no access.

You say a unit only receives 1 (ONE) morale marker in a turn, but where in the 1983 rules booklet is that clearly stated? The "Morale" rules on page 14 and Morale Results Table don't say that. Please provide the 1983 rules booklet page number and paragraph number where I may find this clearly stated.

You say rolling on the Morale Table removes one morale marker regardless of the result score, but where in the 1983 rules booklet is that clearly stated? The "Morale" rules on page 14 and Morale Results Table don't say that. Please provide the 1983 rules booklet page number and paragraph number where I may find this clearly stated.

You say a unit only ever and forever receives ONE morale marker in a given turn, but where in the 1983 rules booklet is that clearly stated? The "Morale" rules on page 14 and Morale Results Table don't say that. Please provide the 1983 rules booklet page number and paragraph number where I may find this clearly stated.

Paragraph six of the "Morale" rules on page 14 of my rules booklet DOES state, "Units make only ONE morale check for each turn no matter how many times they received morale markers in the previous turn." If anything, this rule indicates that units CAN receive multiple morale markers in a single turn, which is rather a clear opposite of "a unit only ever and forever receives ONE morale marker in a given turn," wouldn't you say?

Paragraph two of the "Morale" rules on page 14 of my rules booklet DOES state, "If a unit takes its chances on the Morale Table and passes, it may move as wished;…" However, in my rules booklet neither the rules nor the Morale Table specify on what dice score a unit "passes" a diced morale check. Further, many of the results on the Morale Table require a testing unit to take certain actions which are not "move as wished," which contradicts the "…passes, it may move as wished" rule on page 14.

The Morale Table does state that a dice roll result of "NE" means "unit may move as desired" but as I said the table makes absolutely no mention of "passing" or "failing" a morale check. Based on what is stated in the rules on page 14, is one to infer (guess) that the "NE" result is the equivalent of "passing" a morale check, and therefore any result OTHER THAN "NE" does not "pass" (in other words, fails) a morale check? As written in the rules booklet I have, the morale rules and table are not clear.

Incidentally, I find no mention whatsoever of shooting arcs in the rules booklet I have. Please provide the 1983 rules booklet page number and paragraph number where I may find shooting arcs clearly stated.

I'm truly happy for you if the magazine version of the rules which you evidently have is as clear in these areas as you say it is, but the rules booklet I have is not clear. If the magazine version corrects the flaws in the booklet version then I'd be grateful if you could provide to me a pdf copy of the rules from the magazine version and any subsequent printed changes and clarifications, because then maybe I could actually play the game with a reasonable degree of certainty about what the rules actually mean. Thank you.

Rev Zoom25 Nov 2020 6:06 p.m. PST

I do not know if you are deliberately trying to provoke a situation or truly do not understand. I will presume the latter. Please take out your rules and look at pg 14 (MORALE).

"Before a unit may move or fire for a turn, any morale markers must first be removed. This may be done by rolling a 2D10 and consulting the MORALE RESULTS TABLE, or by moving the division or corps commander to the unit and using a " morale pass"."

How is this done?
"If a unit takes its chances on the Morale Table and PASSES, it may move as wished."

OK, what constitutes PASSING? Look at the Morale Table. It you roll 55-84 after all modifiers (55-89 for the Union), the result is NE (No Effect unit may move as desired). That is PASSING per the statement form the rules I just noted. Failing is when you then have to move as dictated by the Morale Table. That can range from ROUT to Revenge Charge. Either way, the morale markers are removed per the first paragraph.

The same is true if an Officer uses a Morale Pass except the unit may not move again per pg 14: "if an automatic pass from its commander is used, then it may face, fire, change formation, retreat, but IT MAY NOT MOVE AGGRESSIVELY TOWARD THE ENEMY."

The reason we have always said only one morale marker matters is because there is no modifier on the Morale Table for any morale markers beyond the first (that is an option detailed in a later version of the Courier : -5 per morale pass on the Morale Table roll) and because per rule on the bottom of page 14:
"Units make only ONE morale check for each turn no
matter how many times they received morale markers in
the previous turn."

Notice not for each morale marker, but for each turn.

I hope this helps clarify what is an excellent set of rules. Paul did amend the rules in later Couriers, the most important being that the Morale Table is changed to be based off the Officer Rating rather than the Unit although the quality of the unit contributes or subtracts from the Morale Roll.

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