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"My first go at Nuts! 25mm skirmish rules" Topic

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©1994-2024 Bill Armintrout
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Korvessa25 Jan 2024 12:46 p.m. PST

After running a poll here, I decided to plunge into WWII skirmish using the Nuts! rules by Two Hour Wargames. What follows is my first game

Before the game.
I started with a Warlord box of paratroopers (a bit disappointed the plastic ones didn't come in Normandy Uniforms) and the HQ supplemental pack. The Germans had a similar box, an HQ supplement and an AT gun and crew.
I modeled the paratroopers after my father (SSG 1/507/82) and his mates. I named each figure after someone in his "stick" or those who were in his section. Rather than doing it randomly when they showed up as per the rules, I rolled up Rep level and characteristics for each figure I had. I decided that rather than roll a Rep for each figure, I used the ratios in the rule book to get the right percentage of "4,5 and 6s" then assigned them more or less randomly – although the 5s and 6s tended to go with the officers and NCOs. Then when it came time to draw a reinforcement, I randomly picked a character who had the right weapon.
The rules allow for the main character or "star" (I have named him SSG Rockstar) to have two attributes. One random and one free choice, Rockstar ended up with "stealthy" and "quick reflexes" – he should win most "In Sight" tests. As for the characteristics of the other figs, I didn't want duplicates, so I made a list and randomly assigned each one to a different trooper. The only duplicate I allowed was when it was a free choice.
As for the Germans, they all had names too, and were modeled on the 1097th Grenadiers – the unit my dad was fighting at Normandy. With the exception of the senior officer, who had the name of an actual major from the 1097th (I have no idea what his assignment was), the names were taken from movies or TV shows. I found a web page that told what weapons characters in the movies/TV shows, so each figure is named after a movie/TV character that carried that same weapon.

Scenario Flash and Thunder from Blood Upon the Risers
Turn 1:
SSG. Rockstar find himself alone in a field. He is armed with a modified carbine (so counts as a Thompson). He crosses a main road bordered by two hedgerows to investigate a PEF (possible enemy force).
Turn 2:
Rockstar takes a cautious peek through the hedgerow and is relieved to discover an equipment bundle. It contains carbine and M1 ammo.
Turn 3:
Hearing sounds in the distance, Rockstar heads up the road behind the cover of the hedgerow, to get a closer look at another approaching PEF.
Turn 4:
Sgt Kelley arrives as a reinforcement, not too far from where Rockstar landed. Unfortunately, he has no weapon other than a couple of grenades. With a hedgerow between Kelly and Rockstar blocking their line of sight, neither is aware of the other at this point.
Rockstar looks through the hedgerow and spots a German patrol heading his way (Lt. von Witzland and Sgt Kruger w/ MP40s, medic Maurer and two riflemen: Katczinski and Muller). Rockstar, ducks back into the hedgerow before the Germans can react.
Turn 5:
Rockstar decides to put some distance between him and the patrol and Hustles down the road towards a couple of other PEFs. He again takes a quick look through the hedgerow and is relieved to spot fellow troopers: Captain Rae (pistol) and two privates: Blanchard (unarmed except a couple of grenades) and Guidas with an M1. Just behind them is Tech3 Seid (counts as private) with a carbine.
Perhaps they will be friendly. Meanwhile, Sgt Kelly searches for an equipment bundle without success.
Note: Technically, because of a scenario specific rule, the German patrol would have disappeared by now if it acted as a revealed enemy force, but since I wanted to learn the rules, I moved them as if they were a PEF to keep them in the game
Turn 6:
German reinforcements in the form of panzerschrek team arrives – although it soon departs.
Rae sends everyone but Miller (who stays behind to search for an equipment bundle – finding some SMG ammo) over the hedgerow to join Rockstar. Rockstar and Sgt Kelly join Rae's group.
Turn 7:
Rae's group move up the road and drop into prone position ready to enter the hedgerow.
Turn 8:
The enemy squad failed to activate, so Cpt Rae had his men crawl to the edge and let them have it. Rockstar killed Lt von Witzland, T3 Seid killed Sgt Kruger while Guidas and Kelly's grenade took wounded the two privates, causing the medic to ignominiously flee the field.
Cpt Rae thought about moving up and taking the dropped weapons, but that would have to wait. He could here the AA gun firing in the distance from time to time and didn't want to be discovered just yet.
Note: I figured the AA gun would be busy firing, or at least searching, for aircraft, so I periodically changed it to a random facing.
Turn 9:
Cpt Rae sees an opportunity to use nearby hedgerows to get close to the guns while under cover. Protected by the hedgerows, his men double time back up the road.
Turns 10-12:
Cpt Rae spends the time moving through hedgerows and searching for bundles. Pvt Blanchard finds a BAR, but Sgt Kelly keeps coming up empty.
Turn 13:
Cpt Rae was able to get close enough to repeat their ambush, which was just as effective as before. Blanchard and his BAR kill one and wound another, while Rockstar and his modified carbine do the same. The two survivors flee.
With the immediate area clear of enemy, Rae sends troopers to go pick up weapons from the first ambush site and search the last two area for bundles. The search only turns up some .30 MG ammo – not much help at present. Sgt Kelly does bring back an MP40, which he keeps, and a Kar98 which he gives to Cpt Rae.

Notes and Observations:
I really enjoyed the rules, especially the ‘role playing' aspects. However, there were a couple of things that puzzled me, but the beauty of a system designed for solo play like this one is that you are quite free to develop your own "House Rules."
Paratrooper equipment:
There is a 50-50 chance your troopers land without a decent firearm – like Winters in the TV show Band of Brothers (D1-2 = nothing, D3=pistol, D4=carbine, D5=M1, D6=Thompson). There is also a chance they may have a grenade or something. This seemed kind of harsh to me, especially as the equipment bundles don't have personal firearms (they do have a chance at BAR or .30 MG). So I decided that if they survive the scenario they will be given an M1 before the next one.
The various scenarios tell you which of several tables to use when determining reinforcements or when a PEF turns out to be friendly troops. In most of them, it is specifically stated that only those from Table A are ‘keepers' (become members of your permanent squad) whereas those from other tables are not and will not carry over to the next scenario However, it does not do this for the first scenario, so I decided to follow this rule of thumb (mostly anyway): Table a = keepers, others are not.
I didn't want to have anyone senior to by "star" as a permanent member of my squad, so after this scenario I decided that Cpt Rae (perhaps to be seen later. Who knows?) would move on and Sgt Kelly would take his place.
So at the end of scenario #1, my permanent squad was as follows:
SSG Rockstar – Modified carbine
Sgt Kelly – MP40
T3 Seid – carbine
Pvt Blanchard – BAR
Pvt Guidas – M1

The initial set up:


A small German patrol advances


A well executed ambush by the paras


huron725 Supporting Member of TMP25 Jan 2024 8:24 p.m. PST

Wow, great write up and great looking game. I especially liked your AA gun randomly changing direction. Good rule that I am going to 'borrow'.

Been awhile since I played Nuts but it is great. I like that your squad mates don't always do what you as the squad leader want them to do. Ingenious ruleset.

Stryderg25 Jan 2024 10:24 p.m. PST

Well done! You survived your first encounter, can't be said for a lot of games. Thanks for writing this up.

blacksmith26 Jan 2024 6:44 a.m. PST

Yes, well done! I also had a blast with the firs mission. Here's my take on that: link

Maggot26 Jan 2024 7:04 p.m. PST

Hmm, glad you wrote this; I had assumed Nuts was a version of the 5150 rules that were a different take on "platoon plus assets" game (2-4 squads plus teams, maybe a vehicle or two ala' Bolt Action).

Is it truly one to one skirmish or does it scale up like the 5150 series to platoon plus?

Korvessa27 Jan 2024 2:12 a.m. PST

Not familiar with 5150.
It is indeed one to one. Although I suppose you could try 1 stand = 1 man with 15mm. I may try that with the Winter War one day.
I have only just started the US Airborne campaign. The primary force is your squad, which you build up to about 12 or so. You can sometimes have a platoon and occasionally a vehicle or two shows up.

Maggot27 Jan 2024 6:16 a.m. PST

Thanks Korvessa,
not really my cup of tea, then. I keep trying to find that set of platoon plus rules that hits my preferences, my something seems to be missing is just about all of them.
Bolt Action-almost too simplistic; infantry blob vs. infantry blob
Chain of Command-too many deviations from the core rules, particularly in vehicles and feels too random with the dice…

yeah, I'm picky..
Thanks for this write up, sounds like Nuts is a good mix for what it sells. Enjoy!

Personal logo Extra Crispy Sponsoring Member of TMP27 Jan 2024 9:41 a.m. PST

Two Hour Wargames created a base set of rules back in the day (the reaction system) and then wrote rules for a variety of settings, including SciFi, WW2, Vietnam and the French and Indian Wars.

The first games were all 1:1. As the stable of titles grew they expanded it to games with multi based elements.

Joe Legan03 Feb 2024 5:27 p.m. PST

Maggot, you should look at force on force.


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