Help support TMP


"Skirmish Rules Test Marathon Finished - Summary of all 12" Topic


13 Posts

All members in good standing are free to post here. Opinions expressed here are solely those of the posters, and have not been cleared with nor are they endorsed by The Miniatures Page.

For more information, see the TMP FAQ.


Back to the SF Battle Reports Message Board

Back to the Modern Battle Reports Message Board



Areas of Interest

Modern
Science Fiction

843 hits since 17 Dec 2018
©1994-2019 Bill Armintrout
Comments or corrections?

DavidBurden17 Dec 2018 6:51 a.m. PST

I've finally got to the end of my 12 skirmish rules (modern and SF) megatest – playing the same Afghan type scenario out with each of them. The summary (with links to each review) is at link

The highlights:

Danger Close 9/10
Pros: Really good set, all on one sheet A4. Covers most the bases.
Cons: Activation not ideal

Snapshot 1/10
Cons: Too lethal, no cover or spot

Azhanti High Lightning 5/10 -> 7/10
Pros: Surprisingly good for age. Good morale.
Cons: Dreadful activation. No spotting.

Chain Reaction/Nuts/FNG 6/10
Pros: Good NPC AI once spotted. Nice campiagn/pre-game/scenarios.
Cons: Unclear. Odd inverse activation.

Black Ops 6/10
Pros: Nice guard AI.
Cons: Noise disappointing. Surprisingly pedestrian for a "big name" release (or because of?)

FiveCore 5.5/10
Pros: Nice patrol mode and campaign rules. Use of Kill and Suppress dice nice.
Cons: Rules all over the place. Keep changing dice. Hard to kill. V few DMs.

Albedo ACP164 8/10
Pros: Well balanced, card system very neat, usable and quick. Nice morale and movt.
Cons: No spotting (in advanced). No suppression/aimed shots yet. Too many out-of-ammo.

Paragon 4/10
Pros: Body part effect.
Cons: Very basic DMs, simultaneous movement. Minimal morale. Hard to hit. No suppression/spot.

FUBAR 6/10
Pros: Short
Cons: Ranges too short. No UGL difference. Hard to activate or kill. Few DMs. Poor suppression.


Gruntz 5/10
Pros: Unit cards nice
Cons: Very short ranges, very few DMs, lots of stats. Change both ends of die roll. Rapid kills.

Victory Decision: Raid 6/10
Pros: Nice actions options.
Cons: Ranges only just OK. Very bloody. Odd wound recovery and not cumulative. No suppression. No morale. Opposed per figure activation.


Fireteam: Modern 7/10
Pros: Nice activation and action model. Has spotting and reasonable stress. Some suppression.
Cons: Few DMs. Very bloody. Poor indirect fire.

Skirmish Sangin 7/10
Pros: Poses and pose chits. Unconscious & mission change mechanic. OK basic mechanics.
Cons: Very complex per action activation. No suppression. Poorly laid out.

7TV 3/10
Cons: Star/cast model/countdown doesn't work so well in simulations. IGOUGO. Defend then attack roles. Blurred ranged/melee system. No spot/suppress/IDF. Not really designed for this.

So if forced to choose I'd probably be happy to play both Danger Close and ACP164 as is, with a marginal preference for Danger Close detail wise, but I'd miss the ACP card approach, (and yet to test the full ACP rules)!

I'm sure your views will be different, but it's how they did (or did not) match up to what I was after (which I'll admit tends to be more at the old skool/simulation end of the spectrum, but no excessively so.

Thresher01 Supporting Member of TMP17 Dec 2018 7:59 a.m. PST

An excellent summary review.

Unfortunately, for your link, I get a blank page with this on it:

"Sorry, the page you were looking for in this blog does not exist".

How does activation work in Danger Close, and what don't you like about it?

Which activation set of rules do you like best, and why?

I'm surprised you rate AHL so high, given it is essentially Snapshot (perhaps slightly improved), from what I've read of these Traveller rules sets. I get the no spotting rules, since essentially they were pretty much designed for combat inside or near/around spacecraft.

What activation scheme does AHL use, and why do you consider it dreadful?

FUBAR seems to have done surprisingly well for a free set of rules. Have you tried FUBAR with D10s in order to get around the too frequent inactivations complaint many have?

I think that will fix most issues easily for it.

Finally, what rules would you mash together in order to make a 10 for 10 set of rules, regarding:

Activation;
Spotting;
Firing;
Weapons Ranges;
Cover;
Weapons Types;
Suppression;
Injury/Kills;
Morale; and
Other?

Blount Supporting Member of TMP17 Dec 2018 9:52 a.m. PST

There's a period at the end of the URL. If you click on it, and then delete the period when you get the error message and hit return, you'll get to the right page.

Tony S17 Dec 2018 10:51 a.m. PST

You've gone to quite a bit of work in your reviews. I love reading comparisons like yours. Thanks for posting everything!

Entirely subjective for me, but I found that your listing of "few die roll modifiers" as a con completely opposite to my thinking and experience. I'd regard that as a pro. Usually a short list of DMs that one can easily memorize after a couple of turns is far better than a long list, in my opinion. I like playing games where the rules "get out of the way".

But as you say, you like a old school vibe, which is your cup of tea! And your reviews do state exactly what you like, and what works, and what is contained in the rules you've looked at. Very useful indeed.

Troopers Hore and Jones did not risk their little lead lives for naught!

nnascati Supporting Member of TMP17 Dec 2018 12:39 p.m. PST

David, I suggest that you also take a look at Flying Lead from Ganesha Games, and Galactic Heroes from Wylie Games.

Also, I got that same message.

mmessenger17 Dec 2018 12:54 p.m. PST

link

Cutting to the chase.

surdu2005 Sponsoring Member of TMP18 Dec 2018 6:10 a.m. PST

David, spotting and many other things are covered in the full ACP rules. They should be available to backers of the Kickstarter in Beta in the next couple of days.

DavidBurden20 Dec 2018 6:35 a.m. PST

Thresher01:

Here's the correct link (apologies):

link

> How does activation work in Danger Close, and what don't you like about it?

It uses the Skills & Drills rating, and characters activate in decreasing S&D order. This falls foul of all 3 of my activation bugbears:

1) The team leader should not always (even usually) be the "best" soldier in combat terms. Leaders are chosen as leaders, not as best shot, best knife fighter, best load character etc

2) The team leader (and probably also "best" soldier) shouldn't have to activate first, in fact in most situations they will probably want to activate last. I love that in ACP the team performance degrades if the OC actually has to resort to shooting himself.

3) The leader should be able to choose activation order of his/her team so that they can do proper fire and manoeuvre and have a plan to reach a tactical goal. By all means then introduce some friction, but the initial decision should be the leaders.


> Which activation set of rules do you like best, and why?

I think Fireteam:Modern is very close – which side gets a figure activation is random, but you can then choose which figure, and there are trump cards to steal it back. ACP164 is squad based activation, so that's just about fine, but interestingly the introductory scenario uses per figure which then ruins it!

I'm surprised you rate AHL so high, given it is essentially Snapshot (perhaps slightly improved), from what I've read of these Traveller rules sets.

- That was my assumption but was really surprised at just how different they were and how modern AHL felt against Snapshot. They must have more or less gone back to the drawing board after Snapshot.

> I get the no spotting rules, since essentially they were pretty much designed for combat inside or near/around spacecraft.

- agree

> What activation scheme does AHL use, and why do you consider it dreadful?

Broke rules 1-3!

> FUBAR seems to have done surprisingly well for a free set of rules. Have you tried FUBAR with D10s in order to get around the too frequent inactivations complaint many have?

No, might be worth trying. Am thinking my own set will be based around D20 to get enough resolution in the various DMs etc.


> Finally, what rules would you mash together in order to make a 10 for 10 set of rules:

This is the Frankenstein list I posted on the blog article.

Activation: Fireteam:Modern with user choice but random Red/Blue and opportunity to trump
Actions: Fireteam:Modern or Victory Decision: Raid
Movement: ACP164 randomness. Skirmish Sangin poses.
Spotting: Danger Close, good above/below
Aimed Fire: Danger Close or ACP164
Suppressive Fire: None really did it right!
Indirect Fire: Danger Close or ACP164
Morale: AHL or ACP164
Wounding: ACP164 or Paragon
NPC AI: Bits of FiveCore/Chain Reaction/Black Ops
Scenario/Campaign Builder: FiveCore/Chain Reaction


Thanks for the comments and thoughts.

DavidBurden20 Dec 2018 6:40 a.m. PST

TonyS:

Thanks for the comments, yes getting the number of DMs right is a real challenge, and whilst I can see that moving to things like a bucket of dice approach so you can physically add and remove dice helps avoid the "did I add that DM" issue, I'm not 100% sure I like the overall result. Likewise the changing dice type and dice shifts. Would love to find an alternative way, but I know that many have been there before me! One option I might look at it to ensure that DMS are suitably staged, 20%, 10%, 5% and then if you want quick play you could have a QRS that just has the 20% values on it!

DavidBurden20 Dec 2018 6:41 a.m. PST

Oh and Cpl Hore is looking forward to handing over to Lt Shaw next year!

DavidBurden20 Dec 2018 6:43 a.m. PST

nnascati: Thanks, will check those out.

Buck – looking forward to downloading them!

Oldgrumbler Supporting Member of TMP11 Feb 2019 4:28 p.m. PST

Looked at a few of the sets & they do vary widely in what they seek to achieve. Danger Close, for example, is really about individual soldiers on the battlefield whereas Fire Team: Modern is about running a platoon. To properly compare them I think it would be best to break the rules into groups that are similar in scale or add another line to each of the summary comments describing the scale a little better. Some people, like me, have no interest in rules with highly detailed individuals that allow only a small number of figures on the table top.
After having purchased a number of these I like Fire Team: Modern for platoon sized battles.

JPK

Joe Legan11 Feb 2019 6:58 p.m. PST

Interesting you didn't test Force on Force. Do you not consider that skirmish?
I too loved Azhanti High Lightning. Good to see it holds up.
Have not played Albedo ACP164 but the WW II version Combat patrol. Love the cards but I found morale as a negative. Too often individuals were charging forward. Is this fixed in the modern version?

Thanks

Joe

Sorry - only verified members can post on the forums.