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"Differences between CoC and BA?" Topic


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jdginaz09 Jun 2018 6:42 p.m. PST

Read the story of the Emperors New Clothes,

You do understand that that is a children's tale and not a true story, right? Your reference to that story doesn't work here because unlike in the story we are able to actually prove the "clothes" are there. You're turning the story around and saying the "clothes" aren't there when they really are.

We have seen that CoC is need dice heavy (oh boy is it, 17x the number of dice rolled compared to BA), that you have to roll the right numbers to get any of your units to do anything and that it is a slower game than BA. Those are facts that cannot be argued with.

You keep going on about having to roll 400 dice. Dah, if you're going to use a big cat in the game you're going to roll more than the normal number of dice. You rolled 16 each time the Tiger fires and 22 if it gets a hit and either 24 or 21 when the Shermans hit. The scenario skews the dice roll.

I believe I've mentioned this before just because your scenario is unfair to both rules doesn't mean that it is a fair test of either of the rules. Nor does it make a good comparison of them as it may not be unfair to each in the same ways or may be more unfair to oe than the other. .

It has been said that after rolling the dice in CoC, you get to make choices. But you get to make the same choices in BA, without rolling the dice.

Not quite true. In BA if a unit is shot at the previous turn they get a pin maker and have to roll a morale check in order to activate. So no they aren't guaranteed to activate every turn.

VVV reply09 Jun 2018 9:36 p.m. PST

Your reference to that story doesn't work here because unlike in the story we are able to actually prove the "clothes" are there.

If only you could. You have had no luck with doing so up to now. The point of the Emperors New Clothes is that people belive what they are told because they are told that they are stupid if they do not. Rather than believing the evidence of their own eyes. You have the evidence (of both play and memoir) I suggest you use that.
By only using the Senior Leader to only activate one other Sherman instead of two you missed three additional shots they could have taken.

Quite right, I thought that only one radio order could be sent. Now I am told you can send as many as you like. So a roll of 4 (or a combination of dice to make 4) would have activated the entire force. That was one of the points against the idea that by using only tanks, the Command dice were unfair. Of course you add more tanks, then they cannot be used, simply you cannot roll enough dice to activate them. Another point made earlier.
You keep going on about having to roll 400 dice. Dah, if you're going to use a big cat in the game you're going to roll more than the normal number of dice. You rolled 16 each time the Tiger fires and 22 if it gets a hit and either 24 or 21 when the Shermans hit. The scenario skews the dice roll.

Well 80 dice just for Command dice of both sides. A US rifle squad would roll 12 dice for hitting (without the SMG) and you would expect, 4 dice for damage caused. Add in dice for movement, you will find they all add up.
I believe I've mentioned this before just because your scenario is unfair to both rules doesn't mean that it is a fair test of either of the rules.

Ah so now longer just 'unfair' to just CoC, now 'unfair' to BA as well. Just my point, a fair comparison as Hunt the Tiger is equally 'unfair'. So a fair comparison can be made.
Not quite true. In BA if a unit is shot at the previous turn they get a pin maker and have to roll a morale check in order to activate. So no they aren't guaranteed to activate every turn.

You may be right. I don't know about BA any more. A friend of mine has joined the 2D6 club in Cambridge, they play BA and I have sent him my rules and supplements.
But you are welcome to look up the effects of Shock and Pinned in CoC. Enemy fire does make a difference, as we all agree. The disagreement is that in the absence of enemy action, why should units actions be restricted each and every phase (in CoC) by the rolling of dice? What is the justification for doing so. That it is in the CoC rules, there is no doubt and of course if you are happy to play that, it is your choice. But to say it is not occurring is obviously untrue.

jdginaz09 Jun 2018 10:48 p.m. PST

If only you could. You have had no luck with doing so up to now.

That's just deny it all you want the proof is there, in black and white as they say. I'm quite confident that anybody who reads even a small portion of this monstrosity of a thread will draw the correct conclusions. Your tactic of ignoring the replies that very specifically address your inaccurate claims just goes to show that you can't refute disprove them.

Ah so now longer just 'unfair' to just CoC, now 'unfair' to BA as well.

If you care to check you'll find that I've said it was unfair to both from the very beginning.

You may be right. I don't know about BA any more.

So now you admit that you have been making claims about BA in comparison to CoC without actually knowing what you are talking about.

kevanG10 Jun 2018 3:22 a.m. PST

"You realize that by having each unit activate in CoC, you are turning that game into UGOIGO. Most modern rules have moved awy from that style because it is slow and seems to less simulate the chaos of war."

It is the worst command simulation you can get

VVV reply10 Jun 2018 5:56 a.m. PST

That's just deny it all you want the proof is there, in black and white as they say.

That is my point, it is not.
If you care to check you'll find that I've said it was unfair to both from the very beginning.

Really, that was not my understanding, again I am happy to quote you (from the beginning)
While CoC handles tank vs. tank adequately it was primarily design with infantry plus some support battles in mind.

So now you admit that you have been making claims about BA in comparison to CoC without actually knowing what you are talking about.

Again wrong. I will repeat what I have just posted
You may be right. I don't know about BA any more. A friend of mine has joined the 2D6 club in Cambridge, they play BA and I have sent him my rules and supplements.

So once again you are completely wrong. But keep on posting any rubbish you care to. I will knock you down again.

Wolfhag10 Jun 2018 2:15 p.m. PST

Is there any chance this discussion could go to final arbitration and have the designer adjudicate the final answers?

Wolfhag

Basha Felika10 Jun 2018 2:38 p.m. PST

Rich Clarke of TFL/CoC has already commented twice at least but I can't see any possibility of ‘arbitration' given VVV's absolute certainty of his factually based position and in the relevance of his test scenario – he is, of course, going to be more impartial than the designer of the rules.

Let's all just quietly walk away, do something more productive instead and allow VVV to believe, sorry, KNOW, he's won the argument.

toofatlardies11 Jun 2018 4:34 a.m. PST

Wolfhag

I have on a couple of occassions attempted to add my comments to this thread, on at least on of those I have attempted to discuss the background behind the rules and my thinking as a designer as well as the influence of Clausewiitz, one of the greatest military minds of the past two hundred years, on the way I view warfare.

Sadly, on both those occasions VVV had dismissed any comments he disagrees with as being silly, rubbish or, in the case of Battlefield Friction, which is what we attempt to replicated when limiting what a commander can do in a phase of play, describing it as "the Emperor's New clothes".

I have no intention of getting into a discussion with anyone who can dismiss Clausewitz as "silly" and who simply ignores any comments here that he doesn't like or, more to the point, is unable to answer and dismisses anyone who disagrees with him as talking rubbish.

What I would point out is that VVV is not impartial. He is the author of another WWII rules set which he sells on Amazon. Here's a link to it:

link

Personally I have always believed that if I want to sell you a product, I do so by telling you what is good about the product I have, not by trying to persuade you that the one you already have is rubbish. I feel that it is a shame that Justin at VVV does not take that approach.

On the positive side, Chain of Command won the current Wargames Illustrated Magazine Award for the best wargame. That was voted for by the readers of the largest magazine in the hobby. What is more, we have sold over 22,000hard copies and more in PDF since the rules were published five years ago and we have literally thousands of followers on social media. I'll take that as a vote of confidence in Chain of Command and will ignore the vindictive and offensive brickbats hurled by someone who clearly feels that the success of my game means I have somehow conned gamers who would otherwise be playing Action All Fronts.

VVV reply11 Jun 2018 9:04 a.m. PST

Too Fat Lardies
Lets see what I said in reponse to Northern Monkeys comments about 'Clausewiitz'

would you say that Clausewitz was wrong to highlight the effect of friction on military operations as, from what you suggest, it is just a silly myth?

No I would say it is precisely as he said it, 'no plan survives contact with the enemy', he did not say 'no plan survives marching along a country lane'.


"No plan survives contact with the enemy" was Von Moltke, not Clausewitz.

Clausewitz said the following (which seems to be relevant to walking down a country lane):

"Action in war is like movement in a resistant element. Just as the simplest and most natural of movements, walking, cannot easily be performed in water, so in war it is difficult for normal efforts to achieve even moderate results."

Clausewitz is right. You are not going to function as well; wearing the the clothes that you have been in for several days, eating lousy food (although in the British army it can be good, I recommend the cooking at Shorncliffe), sleeping on the ground and no TV. Compared to living in your nice comfortable house.
But thats simple, you take being a soldier as the baseline for your soldiers, not living in a comfy house.


So I never used the word silly there. Where I did use it was here.
Why assume friction only happens because of enemy action?

And why assume it does not? I gave as my example, simply walking down a road as you might do when walking the dog. I certainly don't experience 'friction' by doing that. There is no justification for general die rolls limiting what units can do activate or indeed limiting what they can do. So yes its a silly rule but hey its how CoC works and what the rule writers chose.


To add in something that is not there would seem height of silliness (or utterly ludicrous, if you prefer the term Too Fat Lardies use).
Sadly, on both those occasions VVV had dismissed any comments he disagrees with as being silly, rubbish or, in the case of Battlefield Friction, which is what we attempt to replicated when limiting what a commander can do in a phase of play, describing it as "the Emperor's New clothes"

Emperors New Clothes is what you get when someone tries to convince you that something is 'so', when they give you no evidence and deride you when you don't believe them. Sorry Too Fat Lardies but you have not given any evidence for battlefield friction in the absence of enemy action certainly nothing to make it worth including in a set of rules. So why not just get rid of it.
Then we have comments like
1. Movement in Chain of Command is NOT random. Normal movement uses 2D6 added together. As already pointed out, that presents a predictable bell curve of results

Anyone who thinks that rolling dice is not producing random results, clearly has a problem. Having multiple dice rolled for an event, is to produce a bell curve of probabilities. Results are what you get when you have actually rolled the dice. And you have to roll lots of results (100's) before you get something statistically significant (i.e. results that should approach the probabilities).
2. Command Dice Dictate What You Can do
No. Actually, Command Dice determine the choices you can make to get things happening. I noted that earlier in this thread that Seattle Gamer said the following:

Again wrong. What you roll on the command dice, limits what you can do with your units (not a problem in BA, everything can activate). Nicely summed up as, 'You roll the right dice, you can do stuff. You don't, you can't'. Both BA and CoC allow you to make choices with the units you can activate, CoC just limits what can be activated, with dice rolls.
Of course easily changed by allowing every unit in CoC to activate every phase (and you still get to keep your 'friction' from enemy action and random events).
And no I am not impartial. I have 3 sets of rules to my credit. And no where did I see the need to roll for what players could do with their troops. I promise you players can make enough mistakes without having chance limiting what they can do.
If we want to compare Chain of Command and Bolt Action. I would have to say BA is vastly more popular (and has won its own awards). If you really want to say that a set of rules is 'better' because more people play it, then CoC has lost that one.
As for vindictive. I give reasons and evidence for my comments (and am happy to point out where others comments are wrong, as above). So what you think is vindictive, is just reality. Do I think that I have covered the reality of WW2 ground combat better than CoC, yes I do. Because I put at the heart of my rules being able to see the enemy before you can target them. There is a case for CoC saying that everyone that you have a LOS to on the table, your troops can see. Thats fair enough because of the small size of a CoC battle. But I also thought that weather/night was important to include (and is mentioned in historical accounts). What Too Fat Lardies might choose to pull me up on, its that on table battlefield communication is taken as perfect, it was and is not. But better that IMHO, than assume that every 2 minutes or so, something is going wrong.
But I stick to my play-test of the two sets of rules:
Chain of Command, 15 minutes to play and 400+ dice rolled. Shermans KO.
Bolt Action, 5 minutes and 23 dice rolled. Tiger KO.
If anyone wants to provide an alternative comparison, they should do so.

Munin Ilor11 Jun 2018 9:34 a.m. PST

VVV Reply wrote:

Oh my. Let me help you there. Also no point in getting round the flank because in CoC the Tigers flank armour is the same as the front.

Ah, heavy Armor, good catch. I had missed that.

That is why activating the gunner is the only thing that the tanks need do. Everything else is pointless.

If a Sherman is always destroyed in a single hit, yes. Otherwise, being stationary makes you easier to hit. Even in the open, the difference between needing a 5 vs a 4 is a just over 8% reduction in hit percentage. If the Shermans can get into a position where they are even partially obscured, that -1 to hit a stationary target becomes an almost 17% drop in effectiveness. And this ignores the possibility of a Sherman electing to move flat out rather than fire (which imposes a further penalty on the Tiger).

Its a great test and did what it was supposed to do highlight the differences between the rules. What more could you ask for?

I could ask for a scenario that was designed around the force composition for which the game(s) to be compared were designed and balanced. I could ask for a scenario that did not by the very nature of the forces selected introduce a statistical skew in the activation mechanics.

I note that you keep failing to address said statistical skew.

Why take a game that is designed and balanced for infantry platoons and intuit that an armor-vs-armor scenario is a "good test?" And saying, "but the rules include tanks, so it's valid" is the most ignorant, facile, and demonstrably incorrect stance because it fails to address the skew induced by selecting only units with limited activation opportunity.

And again, you've conveniently failed to respond to the fact that the SL Tank Commander's activation of other tanks in his platoon by radio is mechanically (and therefore statistically) different (and inherently inferior) to the SL Infantry Commander's activation of sections in his platoon.

I just want to make sure you understand this, because (again) you keep not responding to it.

You are capable of conceding the fact the Chain of Command is not designed as an armor-vs-armor game, right? You recognize that the intent behind the rules is to simulate infantry actions, yes?

Yes this was discussed early on, both sets of rules are designed to do that.


Ah, this is the important bit, and is perhaps the root of your misunderstanding.

No, CoC was NOT "designed" as an armor-vs-armor game. It is designed as an infantry vs infantry game that allows for limited supports attached to each infantry force. Everything about the game (how infantry teams and sections activation, how leaders are used, how the turn mechanics work) is designed and (more importantly) balanced around units of infantry.

Your chosen scenario introduces a statistical skew in the activation mechanics that you have consistently failed to acknowledge. Further, BA treats all "units" (be they armor or infantry) as exactly the same (i.e. an activation die goes into the pot), and is thus unaffected by this kind of difference in activation mechanics.

Unless and until you can address this statistical difference, your "comparison" lacks merit, because its conclusions aren't applicable to any scenarios other than the one you've concocted. If you'd simply take an hour or so to play through an Infantry action, I think you'd understand this immediately.

And finally, when it comes to friction on the battlefield, I think I'll trust the instincts of von Clausewitz and every other period source I've ever encountered.

Munin Ilor11 Jun 2018 9:46 a.m. PST

There was one little nugget in here that I think is worth pointing out.

VVV Reply wrote:

And at the beginning of all this I thought Chain of Command would make a good set for a solo gamer, not everything you want to happen is going to happen.

Chain of Command is a fantastic ruleset for the solo gamer, if for no other reason than that the activation and movement mechanics mean that it is extremely difficult to anticipate where exactly your "opposition" is going to be or what they're going to be able to do once they get there. You have no idea how quickly you will be able to accumulate enough points for a CoC die, and therefore can't accurately predict if or when an opponent will be able to interrupt, ambush, or use a Turn End to clear off smoke, overwatch, or covering fire.

Even in the Patrol Phase, I've found that just walking around to the other side of the table means you see things you might have missed. Combined with a number of scenarios including a variable number of starting moves for one side's markers and the effects of terrain on the final placement opportunities for JOPs means that even this phase of the game is far from a foregone conclusion.

Let's put it this way – CoC is the only game I've ever played where I have been able to ambush myself and legitimately say, "Wow, I did not see that coming."

toofatlardies11 Jun 2018 9:54 a.m. PST

My only regret is that TMP does not have a Dark Ages board, then I could call a Canute a Cnut when I saw one.

VVV reply11 Jun 2018 12:55 p.m. PST

No, CoC was NOT "designed" as an armor-vs-armor game

Well spotted. Might have something to do with the army lists, if you used them.
As for moving in hope of a better shot, forget it. You have 240 inches to cross (across an open field), the Shermans would be dead before they got there. And only moving flat out, makes a difference to being hit (p55).
I could ask for a scenario that was designed around the force composition for which the game(s) to be compared were designed and balanced.

You have the freedom to do anything you like. Pick the both sides by using CoC if you like, then use the same under Bolt Action.
Why take a game that is designed and balanced for infantry platoons and intuit that an armor-vs-armor scenario is a "good test?"

Because it showed the differences between the two sets brilliantly.
I note that you keep failing to address said statistical skew.

I didn't know that there was one. Now if we agree that only a single 4 (or its equivalent) is needed, between 5 dice (so 4x1's, 2x2's, 1x4, 1x3+1, are all possible combos) there should be no problem, don't you agree. So the idea that the Hunt the Tiger scenario is unfair to CoC goes right out of the window. You can blame jdginaz for that interpretation if you like.
Unless and until you can address this statistical difference, your "comparison" lacks merit, because its conclusions aren't applicable to any scenarios other than the one you've concocted.

Well its an idea, you are welcome to try it out. But one thing I know for sure, the more units you add in CoC, the less chance you have of getting them all to activate. Where as in BA more troops, gives you more troops you can use.
And yes the random nature of CoC does make it better for solo games. More unpredictable. And I do like the ambush rule. As I mentioned it started in the ACW, being shot at by troops you could not see.
My only regret is that TMP does not have a Dark Ages board, then I could call a Canute a Cnut when I saw one.

But don't worry, they are fairly obvious. Basically they are rude and could not make an argument to save their lives. Even are rude to their 'customers'. Quote from the CoC FAQ below.
Q:    Where are the rules for night actions?
A:    There aren't any at the time of writing. These will be produced before long. There are also no rules for fighting on board submarines or for building impromptu hang‐gliders and leaping from a roof. Feel free to devise these if they suit your style of game.

But it seems that some have not seen the film. So here is the Tiger scene (note no smoke rounds for tanks under both BA and CoC)
YouTube link

Basha Felika11 Jun 2018 1:22 p.m. PST

VVV, so the fact that not a single contributor to this thread has agreed that your scenario is a ‘brilliant' way of testing the differences between the two rule sets (or, indeed, thanked you for any of your many insightful comments, unlike those made on the first page of this thread) is down to the Emperor's New Clothes Syndrome?

Of course you're going to struggle to activate everything if you over-extend the game beyond the ‘platoon+supports' it's designed for, that's obvious. If you want to go up a level, then you either use the supplementary ‘Big CoC' rules or start using a popular company-level rule set such as IABSM (other company level rules may be available).

Oh, and CoC rules for use of tank smoke rounds are on p53, 11.8.2

VVV reply11 Jun 2018 2:44 p.m. PST

VVV, so the fact that not a single contributor to this thread has agreed that your scenario is a ‘brilliant' way of testing the differences between the two rule sets (or, indeed, thanked you for any of your many insightful comments, unlike those made on the first page of this thread) is down to the Emperor's New Clothes Syndrome?

You have it right. They have been told that that is the case and believe it. Despite the evidence presented.
You can of course add to that the number of people who think that playing more games is needed to understand the rules (when it seems they don't seem to understand the rules that they are playing despite being experienced). Or misunderstanding what chance (probability) really is. So if you don't understand what you are talking about, how can you expect to be right? But a few people keep on repeating the same nonsense as if repetition will make it right.
That being said, some people have raised valid points, mostly ignored of course.
Of course you're going to struggle to activate everything if you over-extend the game beyond the ‘platoon+supports' it's designed for, that's obvious.

Its really a question of how much you can expect to activate. Certainly there will be occasions when you can activate nothing (a roll consisting of only 5's and 6's will do that. I have a theory on how to max the number of unit activation's in CoC but will post it in another thread to see if it holds water.
Oh, and CoC rules for use of tank smoke rounds are on p53, 11.8.2

Wrong again I am afraid. Look at the rule again. Thats smoke projectors (dischargers I would call them). Good example of people reading but not understanding the rules. So I really do recommend, read what I post, look at the rules, before you decide that I am wrong and you are right. It will save us both time.
Now I kept smoke rounds in for tank guns because in Normandy, Allied crews used them to try to convince German crews that their tanks were on fire, and abandon them.Smoke has been described as the 'thinking mans ammunition' in that it does not kill the enemy (although WP will do that as well) but it can be used to change the tactical situation.

VVV reply11 Jun 2018 2:44 p.m. PST

VVV, so the fact that not a single contributor to this thread has agreed that your scenario is a ‘brilliant' way of testing the differences between the two rule sets (or, indeed, thanked you for any of your many insightful comments, unlike those made on the first page of this thread) is down to the Emperor's New Clothes Syndrome?

You have it right. They have been told that that is the case and believe it. Despite the evidence presented.
You can of course add to that the number of people who think that playing more games is needed to understand the rules (when it seems they don't seem to understand the rules that they are playing despite being experienced). Or misunderstanding what chance (probability) really is. So if you don't understand what you are talking about, how can you expect to be right? But a few people keep on repeating the same nonsense as if repetition will make it right.
That being said, some people have raised valid points, mostly ignored of course.
Of course you're going to struggle to activate everything if you over-extend the game beyond the ‘platoon+supports' it's designed for, that's obvious.

Its really a question of how much you can expect to activate. Certainly there will be occasions when you can activate nothing (a roll consisting of only 5's and 6's will do that). I have a theory on how to max the number of unit activation's in CoC but will post it in another thread to see if it holds water.
Oh, and CoC rules for use of tank smoke rounds are on p53, 11.8.2

Wrong again I am afraid. Look at the rule again. Thats smoke projectors (dischargers I would call them). Good example of people reading but not understanding the rules. So I really do recommend, read what I post, look at the rules, before you decide that I am wrong and you are right. It will save us both time.
Now I kept smoke rounds in for tank guns because in Normandy, Allied crews used them to try to convince German crews that their tanks were on fire, and abandon them.Smoke has been described as the 'thinking mans ammunition' in that it does not kill the enemy (although WP will do that as well) but it can be used to change the tactical situation.

Wharding11 Jun 2018 3:48 p.m. PST

I don't agree with the take that if you are not being fired upon you should be able to walk around as if on a stroll.

BA/CoC are both set to a platoon scale fighting over hundreds of yards.

If you are on a front line battle situation is it not natural to be reluctant to move into open ground when you know there are enemies ahead of you?

Think CoC manages to capture that well, you the player/commander may want your men to advance towards a crossroads where enemy troops are suspected of being, but your men may not always be overly excited to walk towards that even if they cannot see/hear the enemy.

Munin Ilor11 Jun 2018 8:01 p.m. PST

When it was pointed out that COC was not designed as an armor-vs-armor game, VVV reply said:

Well spotted. Might have something to do with the army lists, if you used them.

Right. So why didn't you use them? Why choose a scenario that doesn't do what the game is designed and balanced for? All of those lists start with an infantry platoon.

As for moving in hope of a better shot, forget it. You have 240 inches to cross (across an open field), the Shermans would be dead before they got there.

I don't have a table that big. Neither do you, judging by your photos.

I could ask for a scenario that was designed around the force composition for which the game(s) to be compared were designed and balanced.

You have the freedom to do anything you like. Pick the both sides by using CoC if you like, then use the same under Bolt Action.

I have. I found Bolt Action less satisfying, if for no other reason than that while the randomly alternating activation mechanic felt less like 40K, it still felt very gamey. That and the weapon ranges just seemed absurdly short. Oh, and BA in no way captured the "empty battlefield" or the sudden shock of having a unit get deployed right in front of you and open up with everything they had. But it was fast, easy to learn, and the close combat was simple and decisive.

How's that for a comparison between the systems? It covers more than simply the vehicle rules, so I'd hazard to say it's a more complete comparison, wouldn't you?

I note that you keep failing to address said statistical skew.

I didn't know that there was one.

<Yoda> And that is why you failed. </Yoda>

Well its an idea, you are welcome to try it out. But one thing I know for sure, the more units you add in CoC, the less chance you have of getting them all to activate. Where as in BA more troops, gives you more troops you can use.

OK, this is good. See, this is a true, verifiable statement. It is also why "BigCoC" is a thing – because the designers understood that a system designed and balanced for Infantry platoons needed modifications when being scaled up to larger engagements (i.e. adding more units). BigCoC plays really well up to company-sized engagements.

And yes the random nature of CoC does make it better for solo games. More unpredictable. And I do like the ambush rule.

So why did you choose a scenario that doesn't make use of any of these strengths (sudden deployment, ambush, etc)? Why choose a scenario that only exercises one tiny piece of all that CoC (or BA for that matter) has to offer?

I get that your scenario is "quick and dirty," easy to explain and play out. But claiming that it is a "brilliant comparison" of the two systems when it exercises so few of either of their mechanics is just intellectually lazy. It's almost like you want to be seen as an expert authority without actually expending any real time or effort. By your own admittance, you have spent a grand total of 28 minutes on both systems combined.

Gimme a break, man.

Seriously, throw some infantry platoons on the table and just give it a whirl. You might just have >gasp< FUN!

Keith Talent11 Jun 2018 9:10 p.m. PST

"Wrong again I am afraid. Look at the rule again. Thats smoke projectors (dischargers I would call them). Good example of people reading but not understanding the rules. So I really do recommend, read what I post, look at the rules, before you decide that I am wrong and you are right. It will save us both time.
Now I kept smoke rounds in for tank guns because in Normandy, Allied crews used them to try to convince German crews that their tanks were on fire, and abandon them.Smoke has been described as the 'thinking mans ammunition' in that it does not kill the enemy (although WP will do that as well) but it can be used to change the tactical situation."

There has been a lengthy recent thread on the CoC forums concerning the use and availability of smoke rounds for tanks, and various potential rules to incorporate them, all very simple, and easy to do within the existing framework of the rules. There are many other examples of weapons systems or unusual situations which can be used on the forums.
The CoC forum and FB community is MUCH more active than that of BA, discussing rule variations, new scenarios and campaigns, and platoon lists.

jdginaz11 Jun 2018 9:32 p.m. PST

vvv reply wrote:

Now I kept smoke rounds in for tank guns because in Normandy, Allied crews used them to try to convince German crews that their tanks were on fire, and abandon them.Smoke has been described as the 'thinking mans ammunition' in that it does not kill the enemy (although WP will do that as well) but it can be used to change the tactical situation.

Not true they used WP, not smoke I order to blind the enemy tanks so that they could maneuver to the flanks not to trick them into thinking the tank was on fire. Even though some green crews did in fact abandon their tanks thinking them on fire but that was just a plus event. WP also worked very well against ATGs.

Munin Ilor wrote;

It's almost like you want to be seen as an expert authority without actually expending any real time or effort.

Your definitely onto something there.

VVV reply11 Jun 2018 10:32 p.m. PST

Right. So why didn't you use them? Why choose a scenario that doesn't do what the game is designed and balanced for? All of those lists start with an infantry platoon.

Best for you to read why
TMP link
I don't have a table that big. Neither do you, judging by your photos.

They are out there.
link
I have. I found Bolt Action less satisfying, if for no other reason than that while the randomly alternating activation mechanic felt less like 40K, it still felt very gamey. That and the weapon ranges just seemed absurdly short. Oh, and BA in no way captured the "empty battlefield" or the sudden shock of having a unit get deployed right in front of you and open up with everything they had. But it was fast, easy to learn, and the close combat was simple and decisive.

But lots of people are playing it. I agree I found the picking the order dice out of a container time consuming. Others have pointed out (correctly) that in BA having more units, it gives you a greater chance of getting an order dice, giving the side with the larger number of units an advantage. Everything in BA is fast and brutal, look at the time it took to play the scenario under both rules and the results.
It is also why "BigCoC" is a thing – because the designers understood that a system designed and balanced for Infantry platoons needed modifications when being scaled up to larger engagements (i.e. adding more units). BigCoC plays really well up to company-sized engagements.

I disagree. I looked at BigCoC and really its a number of CoC forces on the same table, with a number of players playing it.
Once the game begins, the main rules apply in
all respects with no significant changes.  All of
the players on the side with the initiative in
the first Phase will roll their Command Dice
simultaneously.    The resulting playing area is
likely to be a busy one, so to keep everyone
honest we recommend that all of the players
place their Command Dice next to the units
they are activating in that Phase.    They can
then activate these in whatever order they
wish, with all of the friendly players doing this
simultaneously.    You DO NOT wait for each
player to take their go in sequence; this would
slow the game right down and is unnecessary. 

VVV reply12 Jun 2018 12:35 a.m. PST

It's almost like you want to be seen as an expert authority without actually expending any real time or effort.

With a set of rules, we are all equal but then its down to us what we do with it.
And why would I need or want to spend time and effort?

Northern Monkey12 Jun 2018 1:05 a.m. PST

Possibly because by spending time and making some effort to learn a game system would mean that you could comment about it from a position of knowledge and understanding rather than the position of ignorance and incomprehension you currently occupy.

Your post on the other thread regarding activation in CoC is absolute proof that you haven't grasped even the most basic aspects of the rules. To be honest, you're making youself look a bit foolish, railing against a system you refuse to play as intended.

Basha Felika12 Jun 2018 2:13 a.m. PST

Northern Monkey, while I agree 100% with your post above, may I refer you to my previous comment on pig wrestling and suggest we all quietly walk away from the gentleman rather than continue to provide him with the attention he undoubtedly craves?

I will now follow my own advice and rather wish I'd done so previously. :-)

VVV reply12 Jun 2018 4:12 a.m. PST

Possibly because by spending time and making some effort to learn a game system would mean that you could comment about it from a position of knowledge and understanding rather than the position of ignorance and incomprehension you currently occupy.

Well since I have been shown to be right and you wrong, thats a strange thing to post. But I suppose just continuing in your tradition.
Your post on the other thread regarding activation in CoC is absolute proof that you haven't grasped even the most basic aspects of the rules.

My view is, if in doubt, ask. And certainly we now that junior leaders cannot activate troops outside their own squad (p.18). Bang went my plan of easily being able to activate all the units in a CoC force. But I am still glad I asked the question.

TacticalPainter0112 Jun 2018 6:36 a.m. PST

Hahahahahahaha. More priceless inanity. You barely had time to draw breath then before contradicting yourself (once again).

You've turned what could have been a dry discussion on rule mechanics into a spectacular display of self immolation, how anyone will ever take you seriously in future heaven only knows. Thoroughly entertaining.

Munin Ilor12 Jun 2018 6:38 a.m. PST

And why would I need or want to spend time and effort?

So you don't sound like a complete idiot? Look, I can't keep you from forming bad, intellectually lazy, demonstrably false opinions. But I can make sure that everyone who reads this thread understands that you have formed bad, intellectually lazy, demonstrably false opinions.

Honestly, as a games designer publishing your own product, I'd think that you would want to be seen as someone who approaches the topic with a lot of thought and diligence. I have not read or played AAF, but if I were someone who was on the fence about which rules system to pick up, your continued poor behavior here would definitely give me pause about the quality of your product.

VVV reply12 Jun 2018 9:41 a.m. PST

So you don't sound like a complete idiot? Look, I can't keep you from forming bad, intellectually lazy, demonstrably false opinions.

And it would be a sad day if I had them.
Honestly, as a games designer publishing your own product, I'd think that you would want to be seen as someone who approaches the topic with a lot of thought and diligence.

What I did was run a practical example of a wargame using both rules, to highlight the differences between them. Something I note no one else has been prepared to do.
but if I were someone who was on the fence about which rules system to pick up, your continued poor behavior here would definitely give me pause about the quality of your product.

Sorry that pointing out your mistakes offends you. But be certain that I will not comment on another of your posts again. You say whatever you fancy.

Munin Ilor12 Jun 2018 12:07 p.m. PST

What I did was run a practical example of a wargame using both rules, to highlight the differences between them.

No. What you did was cherry pick an example that exercised almost none of the things that make either game interesting, then proceed to draw flawed conclusions from that premise and call it a "fair comparison."

You spent a grand total of 28 minutes and came up with "BA is more realistic because all of my units activate every turn."

And you seem shocked that people have called you out on your intellectual laziness. Why do you suppose they have done so?

Sorry that pointing out your mistakes offends you. But be certain that I will not comment on another of your posts again. You say whatever you fancy.

I'm not offended when you point out my mistakes. I missed the Tiger having Heavy Armor in CoC, that was a good catch on your part (and it certainly changes the tactical picture for the Shermans!). Yet you still haven't even acknowledged the statistical difference in CoC activation opportunities for infantry versus armor SLs, for instance. And the more I continue to point these things out, the more hostile you become.

So… who is offended again?

Something I note no one else has been prepared to do.

Leaving aside that there are countless rules comparisons out there for the two systems (a cursory Google search turned up six on the first page of results for me), I'm prepared to do an actual scenario comparison. Buy me the latest edition of Bolt Action and I'm ready to go.

Pyrrhic Victory13 Jun 2018 6:24 a.m. PST

VVV,

I would note that I started a separate thread about coming up with a valid test scenario for these rules, so I'm not at all sure no one else is prepared to run a comparison…

Thanks!
Ed

P.S. Munin Ilor – PM me if you are interested in running a comparison…

VVV reply13 Jun 2018 10:48 a.m. PST

I have suggested to people that they run their own comparisons of CoC and BA but as you say, no takers.
It could be as complex and difficult as they like :)

jdginaz13 Jun 2018 11:40 a.m. PST

I have suggested to people that they run their own comparisons of CoC and BA but as you say, no takers.

That in large part might be because like me they aren't willing to spend the money to buy the BA rules just to show you that you're wrong. Especially when it is so obvious to everybody but you.

kevanG14 Jun 2018 5:14 a.m. PST

If we ignore the personalities involved and dig down into the core aspect of the rules and Justin's gripes just for a minute……

Lots of people have played both COC and BA.

I found BA didnt give much ww2 feel but gave a quick resolution for combat while COC did give a good flavour of low level combat. It's appeal was it was more engaging to the player as a world war 2 game

It seems natural to me that People's Preference between those games would be how individuals feel about the gameplay over period feel….and that is something that has always been. It reflects how wargamers like to split in terms of two camps.

Action all fronts is a pretty bland, old school set of rules. They do not have any real engaging mechanisms. This is why I don't think anyone really bothers about them because the wargamner who might want to play them already has rapid fire he is happy with.

People already have lots of sets of similar rules collecting dust in the wargaming book shelves or in their attic to scratch that type of itch when and if they are that way inclined. If that is the type of game they already play, Why would anyone switch to something "samey"?

Of course this is just an opinion, but hey, this is the thread for opinions

Wolfhag14 Jun 2018 8:20 a.m. PST

kevanG,
The games people like seem to have some type of "hook" that captures the player's imagination and gives him the "feeling" he's looking for to entertain him for his enjoyment.

It can be a connection to some historical aspect (OOB's, accurate models, etc), a rule system that presents a problem to be solved by the player or some type of "Risk-Reward" tactical decision that engages the player.

BA has a good presentation in the rules (lots of eye candy), is interactive and allows the player a "Risk-Reward" decision on what order to activate units.

I'd have to say CoC presents a better "hook" and "Risk-Reward" decisions (chance of not activating all units) using the command dice that seems to give the player that "feeling" that he is a participant in a historical event simulating some chaos. It seems that most game systems are a "variation on a theme" and ends up collecting dust on the shelf.

I think the problems arise in making comparisons is that it is hard to disconnect people feelings and personal experience from logic and reality. It's that personal experience we are looking for and it's different for everyone. It's just human nature and you are not going to change it.

Wolfhag

VVV reply14 Jun 2018 8:26 a.m. PST

That in large part might be because like me they aren't willing to spend the money to buy the BA rules just to show you that you're wrong

As I said, borrow a copy. You playing BA does not make me right or wrong, just gives you experience of how another rule designer did it. And in this case coming from GW, they both have worked on very popular rules, with rules systems that lots of people are familiar with. But BA is a very fast set of rules and easily expanded to larger forces (that much I remember of them).
I found BA didnt give much ww2 feel but gave a quick resolution for combat while COC did give a good flavour of low level combat. It's appeal was it was more engaging to the player as a world war 2 game

Agreed, the only difference I have with that is rolling dice to limit the units that can be activated and the movement of units, in CoC. I can see no justification for either.
Action all fronts is a pretty bland, old school set of rules.

Very probably, after all the aim is to keep them simple. But I don't think Rapid Fire is what you should compare AAF with. Bolt Action is a far better comparison.

kevanG14 Jun 2018 9:15 a.m. PST

"I can see no justification for either"

I can…It's sort of like not having absolute knowledge and precision of movement rates for movement through rocky areas of ground. I can see no justification for making movement rates on roads exactly 3 times the movement in any difficult terrain.

Bolt action has variance in it and has some representation of command friction so I wouldnt class it as old school

Your rules and Rapid fire don't.

jdginaz14 Jun 2018 10:55 a.m. PST

As I said, borrow a copy. You playing BA does not make me right or wrong, just gives you experience of how another rule designer did it.

That would only work if I knew anybody who had the rules. The ex-BA player I know sold off their BA rules as soon as they were introduced to CoC

VVV reply14 Jun 2018 11:01 a.m. PST

I can…It's sort of like not having absolute knowledge and precision of movement rates for movement through rocky areas of ground. I can see no justification for making movement rates on roads exactly 3 times the movement in any difficult terrain.

Well see above for a test of the random move idea. Pick point A and point B, move between them a few times and see if you get any significant difference in the time taken for each movement, let alone by a factor of 6.
Your rules and Rapid fire don't.

But then again Rapid fire is not 1 model = 1 man or vehicle. And there is some command friction in AAF, when you call for off-table artillery (see p6). Oh and changing a units orders on the same page. As you can see, I don't do 'friction' for no reason.

Keith Talent14 Jun 2018 1:21 p.m. PST

"As you can see, I don't do 'friction' for no reason.""
In your other thread about activations, you yourself unwittingly provided a perfect example of friction.
It would be a little more accurate to say
"I don't do 'friction' unless it suits me"….which somewhat highlights your lack of understanding of the entire concept.

"Pick point A and point B, move between them a few times and see if you get any significant difference in the time taken for each movement, let alone by a factor of 6."

Again, highlights your blinkered approach, and you'd be right if that was actually the case, but there isn't a precise timescale in CoC.
The length of a phase in CoC is "a few seconds" which obviously means phase length is ambiguous, and varies in itself (otherwise why not state 5, 8, 10 seconds) so the amount of ground a unit might cover will vary as to the length of time…the die roll is not so much showing the rate of speed of the unit but the variable length of time it ihas to perform a task.

Travh2014 Jun 2018 1:47 p.m. PST

I read through a little of this but didn't notice if the person called VVV noticed you could make a tank a platoon leader who activates on a 4 if you have three or more of the same tank? Makes a big difference running tank platoons. Obviously you do not need as many 3's.

jdginaz14 Jun 2018 6:28 p.m. PST

Pick point A and point B, move between them a few times and see if you get any significant difference in the time taken for each movement, let alone by a factor of 6.

A better way to do your little test would be to have 10 men do it together 4 or 5 times and each time at some different point have a hidden person throw a softball at them. Then do it all over again without the surprise but without letting them know and time that.

kevanG15 Jun 2018 3:32 a.m. PST

"let alone by a factor of 6."

average 3.5 is the phrase you should be considering….Can you see it?

VVV reply15 Jun 2018 4:07 a.m. PST

average 3.5 is the phrase you should be considering….Can you see it?

One result 1, other result 6 (the extremes of a single die). Hence the difference of a factor of 6 (which continues into multiple dice rolls as well. 2-12, 3-18…). The average is irrelevant unless you were thinking of using it as a norm (standard) distance.
A better way to do your little test would be to have 10 men do it together 4 or 5 times and each time at some different point have a hidden person throw a softball at them.

No that would be including enemy action (the softball). Enemy action is covered in most rules. This test is just to test if there is variation in movement, just because (no reason for it).
I read through a little of this but didn't notice if the person called VVV noticed you could make a tank a platoon leader who activates on a 4 if you have three or more of the same tank? Makes a big difference running tank platoons. Obviously you do not need as many 3's.

Indeed look at the scenario (on first page of this thread). US tanks had 3 junior leaders and one senior leader (Brad Pitt). German Tiger had a junior leader.

Travh2015 Jun 2018 6:24 a.m. PST

If you do not have any units that can activate on a 1 or a 2 it will limit what you can do.

Keith Talent15 Jun 2018 8:45 a.m. PST

"…This test is just to test if there is variation in movement, just because (no reason for it)."

I've just explained to you why there is variable movement but you choose to ignore it. It's very simple.
The speed is constant. It's the length of time which varies.
It's not rocket science.

VVV reply15 Jun 2018 9:04 a.m. PST

If you do not have any units that can activate on a 1 or a 2 it will limit what you can do.

But you can use 1's and 2's to make 3's and 4's. The real killers are 5's and 6's, nothing you can do about those.
But if you look through the thread you will see that all this was covered earlier.
I've just explained to you why there is variable movement but you choose to ignore it. It's very simple.
The speed is constant. It's the length of time which varies.

Ah its time that varies. Yep that would do it. Sorry I thought that it was all down to some imaginary friction. But yes if the time is not a constant then anything can happen.
I had been thinking of a phase in CoC as being two minutes (so phase for each side = 2 minutes) with a game representing 15 minutes of action.

jtkimmel15 Jun 2018 10:34 a.m. PST

From page 6:

TIME SCALE
Chain of Command uses a unique turn sequence to reflect a battle going through multiple Phases of play. Each Phase of play represents just a few seconds of action. As a result, Turns are of variable length and the end of a Turn represents a significant lull or break in the action.

jdginaz15 Jun 2018 11:20 a.m. PST

Indeed look at the scenario (on first page of this thread). US tanks had 3 junior leaders and one senior leader (Brad Pitt). German Tiger had a junior leader.

And yet you didn't use the SL to his full abilities.

I had been thinking of a phase in CoC as being two minutes (so phase for each side = 2 minutes) with a game representing 15 minutes of action.

But you said you had read the rules and knew all you needed to know. But the more you post the more that becomes obvious that you don't know as much as you think you do.

Thomas Thomas15 Jun 2018 1:24 p.m. PST

Played both liked neither (though I enjoyed a good toy solider game rules be damned – so I still had a good time).

Both do try to add a bit of Command Control so lets not be too harsh on either (many games can't even manage that).

The key aspect of CC is that the leader hasn't enough time to do all they would like and it takes time to digest information, think up an order and then get the recipient to understand. So you should always have more units than "orders" but you can op to give a mass order to everybody or try and fine tune orders to each unit (generally leaving some with no orders). Units with no orders fall back on basic training/survival (generally they will still fire and engage approaching enemies just not maneuver).

Both the order chit system of JReb/Command Decision or PIP system of DBX do this with reasonable results and playability.

Eventually designers will manage to come up with a resolution systems that doesn't involve rolling masses of d6, but this still seems to stump many. (Rolling masses of d6 being about the clumsiest and slowest method of resolution and least random because the sample size is so large).

By full disclosure I am the designer of a WWII game but it is not man-to-man skirmish so competes with neither of these two games.

TomT

jdginaz15 Jun 2018 1:41 p.m. PST

I played JRII and III for many years and love the game but command & control are very much a weak point.


The pip system of DBx is very subject to the luck of the roll and in my opinion the worst I've used. No way to ameliorate bad luck.

At least in CoC you can use you leaders in a way that permits you to manage the chaos.

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