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POLL: Officer or Enlisted?

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Ditto Tango 2 3 writes:

The decisions a player makes with the figures and models represent the orders of the leader…

I diasgree. Most orders (that is, inputs to mechanics that the player decides) don't look anything like the actual content of real military orders. Each order is a hodge-podge of select items spread across different levels.

Unlike a lot of TMPers, I have not played a large number of published rules, so I suspect you have probably more experience with different rule sets. Let me explain my point of view further.

The sort of games I prefer and usually play are where there the game designer has set out with a "level of decision making" in mind and followed the two levels down adage for command. So if a player has a stand that represents a platoon, then the "level of decision making" is battalion level (Bn -> Coy -> Plt).

I'm not claiming battle procedure level accuracy of course, but I think that when such games are designed the way I described, you don't have to deal with as many of the levels to you mention in the quote above. So, when I see a game that is aimed at my particular favourite level of decision making, a company, I will balk a little when I see the rules dealing with moving around and shooting resolution of individual soldiers. In accordance with the two levels down concept, a company commander commands his platoons and is aware of the disposition of the platoons' squads. So I prefer to see infantry Coy -> Plt -> Sec (squad) and tank Sqn -> Troop -> Individual tank. Thus a stand represents a section/squad and the player doesn't worry about individual soldiers shooting personal weapons or tossing grenades or whether the squad LMG is fired or not. He doesn't worry about the facing of individual soldiers in the section, whether they are pepper potting, or if they are in a line, column, or arrowhead. Combat resolution and movement/deployment are abstracted by the stand.

I'm suggesting there are probably a lot more rules out there that deal with more levels than the two down I describe. I understand your statement in that context.

I know you will disagree with my clarification above, but I've put them here for others to understand where I am coming from. In the end, you will have your opinion that works for you and I will have mine.

Many of the games I play and have played are designed in such a way. Some are not, and I will play whatever my friends wish to play. The most important thing for others to understand is that I don't think the games that don't meet my ideal design are bad games.

Speaking as someone who has served as an officer in a number of different roles in different conflicts, most of it related to combat is anything but boring. It is intense, nerve-wracking, frustrating, difficult, intellectually challenging, morally challenging, and time pressured.

You've misunderstood me here. I'm proud of my experiences in peace time, loved the job (had to leave on medical after I was promoted to captain due to the development of a chronic disease), and felt the same things you describe except for the moral challenges and fear. What I was saying is that for a wargamer to go through the little checklist booklet I had laminated and always carried in my left breast pocket for any kind of planning or the actual orders format a squadron commander gives his tanks when an enemy position has been discovered on an advance to contact and cannot be bypassed, they would be unable to do it, would glaze over and would probably not have much of a chance to handle their models.

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Personal logo Inari7 Supporting Member of TMP writes:

In our games, we are all officers, as we control the actions of our miniatures. In real life, would you rather be an officer or an enlisted solider?

Poll set up by Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian, based on this pre-poll discussion.