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"Help parsing a line from 1969 rules" Topic


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836 hits since 12 Jul 2023
©1994-2024 Bill Armintrout
Comments or corrections?

Malchor12 Jul 2023 7:01 a.m. PST

This line is from a set of rules from 1969, though I've seen similar in 1965 Tony Bath and Don Featherstone rules.

"Every five points of Melee Value earns one die, two-three points get ˝ die, single points earn one roll, and a 6 on the die is a hit."

The part that confuses me is "single points earn one roll."

Let's say Bob has 7 infantry going into melee against Jim's 6 infantry and an infantry is worth 1 point.

If I am following, Bob as 1 1/2 die going in.
Bob has 1 die, but also earns "one roll"

Two questions:
1. with a 6 being a hit, how does a 1/2 die work?
2. I would have assumed each player counts up their points, from that works how many dice to throw, and counts their 6s. Meaning each player gets one throw, so what does "earn one roll" mean? Surely, that one single point for one extra guy does not get entire die added to Jim's throw.

Thank you in advance for any insights.

Pendekar12 Jul 2023 8:13 a.m. PST

I would guess that it means with 5 points of melee you get 1D6 hits. The hit on a 6 is only for the single points.

So in your example:
Bob gets D6 + D3 hits. (between 2 and 9 hits)
Jim gets D6 hits plus rolls a die, and if that die is a 6 he gets another hit. (between 1 and 7 hits)


That is the only explanation I see that would make sense.
The 5 and 2-3 points get 1 die and 1/2 die. The single point gets a roll (which is different than a die, and on a 6 on the die is a hit. OK, he should say on a 6 on the die roll.. because it does confuse the difference).

GildasFacit Sponsoring Member of TMP12 Jul 2023 9:34 a.m. PST

Agree with Pendekar, only reasonable interpretation. Also note that I'd assume that 4 points must be rounded up to a whole D6.

That mechanism looks vaguely familiar – what ruleset is it from ? I was definitely wargaming in 1969 and may have used them.

MajorB12 Jul 2023 10:00 a.m. PST

What Pendekar said. looks perfectly clear to me.

Andrew Walters12 Jul 2023 11:12 a.m. PST

So four points would get you the "1/2 die" for 2-3 points plus the die roll for the last point with a hit on six?

Expected values:
1 point: 1/6 of a hit
2-3 points: 2 hits
5 points: 3.5 hits

4 points: 2.1666 hits?

I understand how stuff like this gets written in the first draft, but don't people re-read? Don't they have their friends read through it?

advocate12 Jul 2023 12:14 p.m. PST

It was a long time ago. Assumptions were different and the audience much smaller. 1969 (moon landing anyone?) counts as history. The past is a foreign country…

Personal logo Parzival Supporting Member of TMP12 Jul 2023 12:18 p.m. PST

Break it into sentences.

Every 5 points gives 1 die.
2-3 points gives 1/2 die.
1 point gives a roll; a 6 on this roll is a hit.

That's what it says.

What does it all mean? Out of context, it's hard to say, but it sounds to me that dice are rolled to determine the number of hits— that is, the result of any die is counted as a number of hits, so a single die could be anywhere from 1 to 6 hits. Add more dice, get more potential hits.
In this context, 1/2 die probably means the result of the die divided by 2, for a range of 1-3 hits (rounding up, probably, but possibly just ignoring fractions).
(Why 4 hangs in limbo, I dunno…)

But in the case of a single point, the player can only roll 1 die, and gets 1 hit only if the result of the die is 6. Any other result produces no hits.

That's my guess.

Pendekar12 Jul 2023 12:43 p.m. PST

For the "2-3 get 1/2 die" part, and missing anything to do with 4 in the table. Without further rules / requirements could you also take it as two groups of 2, thus 2 half dice.

In that case 4 could be 2D3 hits or 2-6, which is better than 5.

Probably the best option is to include 4 with 5, still a full die.

To add further, you could add a limitation that it cannot be more hits than the number of points.

To redo Andrew's table would then give:
1 point: 1/6 of a hit
2 points: D3, average: 2 hits, max 2 hits
3 points: D3, average: 2 hits, max 3 hits
4 points: D6, average: 3.5 hits, max 4 hits
5 points: D6, average: 3.5 hits, max 5 hits

I think that would probably be fine. If you want to smooth it out more with some extra complications you could subtract 1 from the die roll at 2 and 4 points (with a minimum of 1)

1 point: 1/6 of a hit
2 points: (D6 – 1 [min 1])/2, average: 1.5 hits, max 2 hits
3 points: D3, average: 2 hits, max 3 hits
4 points: D6 – 1 [min 1], average: 2.66 hits, max 4 hits
5 points: D6, average: 3.5 hits, max 5 hits

2 points should work out the same if you just make it a D2.
(1,2,3 = 1; 4,5,6 = 2)

I think I would just leave it with the original wording, just change [5] to [4-5].

Altar Boy12 Jul 2023 4:51 p.m. PST

Every multiple of 5 is one die or D6 hits

The remainder of multiples of 5 can be 1-4
1 is an extra hit roll a 6 on one die
2 or 3 is 1/2 die or D3 extra hits
4 is a combo of the previous so D3 and an extra on a six

I would roll xD6 plus a D3 when needed plus a reroll for a 6 if needed

Malchor12 Jul 2023 5:10 p.m. PST

Parzival, yup. it finally clicked for me and that is what I came up with.

So if there were 24 points, that's 4 1/2 dice + one roll with 6 to hit.
20/5=4 dice
3 points = 1/2 dir
1 point = one roll, with 6 hits.

I take that one die roll and get a 6 for 1 hit.
Roll the 4 dice and get a total of 16
Roll for the 1/2 die, rolling a 3 (1–2=2, 3-4=2, 5-6=3), so that is 2.
16+2=18 total rolled / 2 = 9 hits + the 1 from above = 10 hits.

It makes sense. I just needed my coffee to kick in.

pogoame13 Jul 2023 3:12 a.m. PST

I follow up to 18
why the divide by 2 ???
I would think 19 hits

GildasFacit Sponsoring Member of TMP13 Jul 2023 6:02 a.m. PST

No idea why these overly complex 'interpretations' are necessary – why not just stick to the obvious simple answer. Most of you are suggesting modifying the original, not interpreting it.

24 points is 5 dice – 4 lots of 5 and 1 lot of 4 rounded up to 5.

so …
4 or 5 1D6 hits
2 or 3 both are 1D3 hits
1 is 1D6 with a single hit on a 6

In 1969 I can be pretty sure no wargamer would have needed more than the description the OP gave to understand this was what was intended.

Martin Rapier13 Jul 2023 6:34 a.m. PST

"In 1969 I can be pretty sure no wargamer would have needed more than the description the OP gave to understand this was what was intended."

Indeed. It is almost straight from Featherstone.

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