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"My thoughts on FUBAR" Topic


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Lesack25 Oct 2013 8:54 a.m. PST

I've been playing FUBAR quite a bit recently, mostly because I got really tired of trying to find things in Tomorrow's War/Force on Force's appalling indexes.

It has a great deal going for it, not the least of which that it's easy to remember and even if you forget something it takes a half-second to find it again. That you encapsulate your entire force on an index card is even better.

That said, with my recent (solo) games, I've had a few issues so I thought I'd air them and post my solution.

Activation: I like the activation idea in principle. In practice, however, I was finding that using Seasoned troops I was getting about a 35% activation rate. Obviously some of this is due to my legendary low rolling skills, but even assuming a 50% success rate that's a lot of pointless rolling.

I think the activation rate is too low, and the initiative roll doesn't do enough, so my solution was this:

While checking initiative, the side with that had the initiative the previous turn throws an extra die, and the side that has more units throws an extra die. This means that it's possible to throw three dice for one side. (Guess where this mechanic came from? Difficulty:0)

Each side takes the highest result as their roll. Ties go to the player that last had initiative. The difference between the two rolls is the number of activations the winner can take without having to roll for them. They can be taken any time during the turn.

This both guarantees more activations and allows the player with the initiative to have, well, more initiative.

The other issue was that I found armoured combat insufficiently lethal, and I didn't like the way the facing rules worked (ie, take the worst of two rolls for damage for shots from the rear).

My suggestion is, when making an armour save:
Front: Roll as normal
Side: Roll +1 number of dice, discard best result.
Back and top: Roll +2 number of dice, discard 2 best.

Front: +1 keep best
Side: +0
Back: +1 keep worst

Which of these you prefer depends on your interpretation of what the armour value means.

After that comes damage:

For hits by a single weapon, roll once on this table. If the weapon has caused more than one hit, increase the damage level by one. (ie, two hits and a roll of 2 would produce a weapon destroyed result).
1-2. Non-penetrating hit. Crew stunned. −2 to next activation. Crew bailout check with +2 modifier
3. Weapon destroyed. Roll 1d6: 1-4, main weapon. 5-6 defending player chooses. Crew bailout check, at -1 if main weapon destroyed and +1 if other.
4. Vehicle immobilized. Vehicle can still fire. Crew bailout check with −1 modifier
5-6. Vehicle destroyed. All occupants bail out and take one hit.

This significantly increases lethality -- an FP8 against a lightly armoured target will likely destroy it, unless you roll like me. The bailout check is the same as the activation check. If the check is failed, the vehicle is abandoned and the crew runs around the table drawing fire.

The last thing:

On Guard units can return fire (once) on any units which had fired on them in the current turn

It's not much, but it speeded up play considerably, and removed those horrible situations where
a) ALL the units went On Guard for a turn
b) MBTs were plinking away at each other to no effect

Tgunner25 Oct 2013 9:28 a.m. PST

Have you visited FUBAR's forums?

Those issues have been discussed a lot and quite a few suggestions have been made. Also Angel Barracks has a FUBAR inspired rules set that fixes a lot of those issues:

PDF link

It's written for his rules and 6mm, but is easily converted to other worlds and scales.

I also have a set of FUBAR rules based off some concepts on the forum:


Anyway, there have been a lot of comments on your points so you might find what you're looking for. I like your damage chart though.

Mako1125 Oct 2013 9:50 a.m. PST

Interesting thoughts.

I'll have to ponder some of them for a bit.

I agree, activations as written is an issue, so I use a D12 for that, since I'm not too keen on multiple dies and discarding, or selecting from those. Seems to me having to figure out which ones are highs, or lows, and discarding some would take longer than using the single die.

With a D12, you can either use it just for iniatiative/activation, and/or if desired, modify the spread of the detection, to-hit, and damage die rolls as well.

For damage, I generally don't modify the die for additional hits, other than to add one to it, if appropriate, if the same result has been rolled previously. About the only one I wouldn't do that for is the -50% movement due to damage, since rolling that for a second time would make the vehicle immobile, so that makes sense to me. Probably makes sense to leave weapon K/O'd as well, if the vehicles have more than one main weapon type (in this case, I usually roll to determine which was destroyed with each hit).

For armor, I have come up with damage penetration mods for the FP ratings of the weapons, as well as mods for the various armor facings.

You can see those on the Grav Armor rules, in the files section, for the Topgun range of vehicles, as well as a few other "unofficial" ratings that I posed for other vehicles too, e.g. some GZG and Critical mass vehicles.

For vehicle rates of fire, I suggested 2 – 3 shots each, per turn, as well (instead of just one), to help speed things along, since the vehicles have the defensive systems and armor checks too.

You can develop your own preferred vehicle ratings from the examples I've provided on the Grav Armor spreadsheet, as desired. They're pretty easy to tweak.

Dragon Gunner25 Oct 2013 10:27 a.m. PST

A suggestion, if a unit is not in view of the OPFOR or taking fire it will automatically activate.

Lesack25 Oct 2013 11:50 a.m. PST

The D12 makes sense, but I also wanted to get away from polyhedral dice because of FoF burnout. There's not really a lot of comparing -- at most two or three, and as it's often a six or a one it's not as bad in practice as it might seem.

I'll have a look at the FUBAR forum. I haven't posted there for a while.

I'm amused that my layout of the 4th ed. rules has been downloaded over 500 times given that everyone in the thread seemed to hate it.

I've seen Angel Barracks' rules, and while I like them, the appeal of FUBAR to me is the one sheet of paper. I suppose ABs rules could be distilled to a QRS.

Like every other wargamer ever, I'm also working on my own set of rules which may or may not ever see the light of day.

Angel Barracks25 Oct 2013 11:54 a.m. PST

I have a QRS on my site…. ;)

Just Jack Supporting Member of TMP25 Oct 2013 3:07 p.m. PST

I'll second or third or fourth Angel Barracks' KR-16 rules. I've been using them for WII and having a blast.


Maxshadow25 Oct 2013 5:49 p.m. PST

Amazing paint job on the 6mm figures AB.

vtsaogames26 Oct 2013 1:47 p.m. PST

From AB rules: "If you think of a GUARD unit as being made up of Arnie, Sly, Statham, Van Damme, Willis etc whilst
all in their prime, then you are getting close!"

Such a unit must be accompanied by make-up men, one personal assistant for each figure, and at least one publicity agent. A crowd of paparazzi would be appropriate.

Personal logo Herkybird Supporting Member of TMP26 Oct 2013 5:34 p.m. PST

The problems with FUBARs activation system is well known. I find it amazing the writer(s) of the FUBAR rules have never got round to making an activation system that works!

My suggested solution would be to have a running total for each unit. You roll a D6 each turn and add it to the running total, each unit, (based on its quality) has an activation level.
So, say, a Really good unit might have an A.L. of 3, it could move once, twice or even 3 times a turn! mostly it would move once.
An average unit might be A.L.4 and a poor one A.L.5 or 6

Hope this makes sense?

Mako1126 Oct 2013 9:42 p.m. PST

D12s work great for activation, leaving all ratings for the units the same.

You still get some failures for less well trained troops, but not so much as to be catastropic.

I understand some people wanting to stick with just plain D6s though.

Perhaps change the Activation die rolls to 2D6, and modify their quality ratings as appropriate.

In my opinion, 1D6 is just to granular to be used on its own. Rolling 2D6 would be easy, if you prefer D6s, and most people are probably using index cards, or something similar to keep track of their units' capabilities anyway, so that doesn't complicate matters much.

Capt Flash27 Oct 2013 8:05 p.m. PST

We include platoon leaders and as long as they are alive, units get a +1 to their activation roll. We've also used a bit of a bite from 1st ed. Warzone, allowing Platoon Leaders to roll to activate, then, if successful, they can give orders to an unactivated squad for an auto-activate, while still allowing the activation bonus to other squads within 12" and LOS…

John Leahy Supporting Member of TMP27 Oct 2013 8:18 p.m. PST

Hi Herky. may I politely disagree. We have run loads of Fubar games using the original activation system and had no issues. The things Capt. Flash mentions are simple fixes. In fact, Ultra Fubar has a mechanic that allows all units one action even IF they fail to activate. If you are used to rules that always allow every unit to activate in a turn then I agree. Fubar may be a harsh wake up call. Personally, we tend to enjoy rules that have fog of war/chaos in them. So it didn't faze us.



Maxshadow29 Oct 2013 2:29 a.m. PST

I like the idea of an Officer activation first!
"That's going straight to the pool room."

Vulture31 Oct 2013 7:26 a.m. PST

I've played quite a few games of FUBAR (our preferred et for 15mm gaming), and at the Harrogate club we have expanded the rules slightly to (in our opinion) improve the vehicle rules amongst other things.

I've posted a few ramblings on my Blog: link

If anyone is interested in the latest version we are using drop me an E-Mail (

Kind regards to all


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