Units · Movement · Firing · Assaults · Artillery
- « Units and
- 101 | Natural Antagonists
- The First World War was highlighted by apparently
contradictory performances from troops of several nations. The Austrian Army
for example, performed poorly against the Russian Army, but battled the Italian
forces with grit and determination. The Russians, who performed so poorly
against the Germans, were often more animated when fighting the Turks, whom
they viewed as their "natural" enemies. The short list below offers a few
training and morale bonuses for some nationalities who displayed such
Austrian Army: +1 to morale when fighting Italians or
Italian Army: +1 to morale when fighting Austrians.
+1 each to morale and training when fighting Turks.
Serbian Army: +1 to
morale when fighting Austrians or Turks.
- 102 | Veteran Officers
- Almost every regiment had a few officers who were
particularly wily or experienced in the ways of warfare in their sector, and
who had lived long enough to apply them in action. These men could often save
the lives of their men, get them into position more quickly, and otherwise
"make things happen" in ways which less experienced leaders might have missed.
To roll for veteran officers, roll two dice (2D6) for each sub-unit
slated to be used for game play. Any result or twelve (12) on the die will give
that unit a veteran officer for the duration of the game. He cannot be killed,
because he is not alone. He is assumed to surround himself with other ingenious
troopers, thereby perpetuating the locally elite status of that unit. Once
acquired, the veteran officer may benefit his unit in many different ways, some
of which are expressed in other related optional rules. For further veteran
officer related rules, see rule numbers 206 and 601.
- 103 | Lost Platoons
- This occurs when an unsupported unit is destroyed (all
bases lost) while within support range of any enemy bases. Place a marker base
made up of a single kneeling or prone figure at the edge of the nearest cover
within support range of the last position of the destroyed parent unit. If no
cover is available, the marker base will remain stationary.
lost platoon marker will draw the fire of up to two enemy machine guns (if any
are in range and line of sight), and pin down the two closest enemy units of
average training quality or worse. The duration of the lost platoon marker is
rolled for at the time of the parent unit's destruction by rolling one six
sided die (1D6). The die result is the number of turns the lost platoon
survives before dying of shock or slinking away.
- « Movement
- 201 | Post-Barrage Deployment
- At the end of major barrages, there was often a slight
time lag between the end of the barrage and the actual deployment of men onto
the trenches to receive the enemy attacks. Using the Post-Barrage Deployment
rule, no prone units which have been attacked by any pre-game barrage may stand
from their pre-game stance until they successfully roll on the Assault Movement
column of the Command chart, with the Over the Top modifier. Units which do not
successfully roll are considered to have been too disrupted by the artillery
barrage to react properly, and they remain in their pre-game prone positions.
This can be a substantial detriment if an enemy attack is imminent, or if enemy
shock troops are very close. Each Commonwealth and German HMG base must also
roll on the command chart for successful deployment (both the Vickers and Maxim
HMG were heavy and difficult to set up).
- 202 | Depleted Reinforcements
- Troops being used to plug a gap in their lines often had
a long and difficult march to the combat zone. This rule causes players to
treat all reinforcing troops (brought on the board as a result of lulls) to
behave as if they have already moved two assault moves.
- 203 | Battery Encounters
- Troops and vehicles who penetrated deep into enemy lines
sometimes encountered comparatively fresh enemy artillery which had been
supplying on-call artillery fire. These behind-the-lines artillery batteries
might suddenly find themselves playing a direct fire support role in the face
of an enemy breakthrough. Players can roll to find out whether deeply
penetrating units will suddenly encounter enemy light artillery in addition to
those already placed on the board.
On each turn that a player suffers
tactical penetration* into his positions, he may roll once on the "F'
column of the setup page's Extra Heavy Weapons Chart, using the current number
of friendly units still in existence as the numerical base. The final result is
the number of light artillery bases which the defending player may place on the
board in hastily dug-in, fire-ready positions. The newly positioned guns are
immediately placed on the board (this will usually be during the attacking
player's movement phase) but they may not be placed within 200 yards of enemy
bases, and their size may not exceed weapon class five.
* Tactical penetration: Is measured from the outer edge of the
closest, outermost (closest to no-man's land) friendly outposts or front-line
trenches, as they existed before the pre-game bombardment. Tactical penetration
has occurred if enemy units penetrate further than 1200 yards beyond any of
those outermost points.
- 204 | Fascines
- Some British Mark class tanks used large multi-ton
bundles of brushwood which could be pushed off of the front end of the tank and
into a trench. The resulting "bridge" allowed the tank to cross wide fire
trenches and proceed into enemy lines. For game play, any tank base said to be
equipped with these fascines may mark one segment of fire trench and being
bridged. That segment of the trench remains blocked for the rest of the game,
and any tracked vehicles may pass over the fascine. Fascines are not passable
to wheeled vehicles or horses.
- 205 | Scouts
- Using this optional scouting rule, each infantry or
cavalry unit may send out scouts to search for and identify enemy units. Each
unit may roll for up to two scout detection operations at the end of each
movement phase (enemy units in different range brackets require different
The values shown in the center of the chart indicate
the number of enemy positions (infantry units, heavy weapon bases, etc.) which
can be identified by troops of that training level at the range shown. Once the
position to be identified is declared, the scouting player rolls one die (1D6)
and applies applicable modifiers. If the adjusted value is equal to or higher
than the Modified Success roll value shown at right, the position in question
has been discovered and may be fired upon, even if it has not previously fired
or moved. Any natural die roll of 1 will result in one damage
"hit" against a base from the scouting unit. Units which have been spotted may
be marked as such (Recommendation: Use a single-man enemy base immediately
facing the front of the spotted position). Bases in a spotted position remain
spotted unless they move out of the line of sight of both the parent unit and
scout marker, or unless the parent unit of the scout routs or is destroyed on
the same turn as the original spotting.
Die Roll Modifier: Air superiority =
||Range (in yards)
||5 or greater
||6 or greater
||6 or greater
||7 or greater
||7 or greater
Any natural 1 causes one damage to a base belonging to the parent
- 206 | Veteran Officers - Command Rolls
- Veteran officers are considered to have better control
over their men, and to have the ability to get them moving even under difficult
circumstances. Using the Command Rolls portion of the veteran officers optional
rules, each unit with a veteran officer gets an additional plus one (+1) on all
command die rolls for both standard maneuver and assault movement.
- 207 | Entanglement Types
- Barbed wire was only the first of many types of metal
entanglements used to interfere with the passage of enemy troops. Later war
German entanglements were manufactured from heavy coiled strips of jagged
saw-toothed steel. A far cry from the flimsy barbed wire "Spanish Riders" which
were hand-built by troops in the field during 1914!
Using the optional
entanglements rule, refer to the types shown below for specific effect and
availability. The movement reduction corresponds directly to the
standard barbed wire movement reduction discussed in the basic rules. The
availability ratio indicates the amount of regular barbed wire which
needs to be traded off in order to obtain some of the optional wire type.
Hence, a player would have to give up 40 inches of regular light coiled barbed
wire in order to be able to use 10 inches of heavy coiled wire.
- Light Riders: Movement reduction = ½ 1D6 x
10 yards. Availability ratio = 0.8. Destroyed on natural barrage roll of
- Light Coiled: Movement reduction = ½ 1D6 x
10 yards. Availability ratio = 1.0. Destroyed on natural barrage roll of
- Light Fence: Movement reduction = 1D6 x 10 yards.
Availability ratio = 1.5. Destroyed on natural barrage roll of 4+. Most common
- Medium Fence: Movement reduction = 1D6 x 20 yards.
Availability ratio = 2.0. Destroyed on natural barrage roll of 5+. Most common
type for main defenses.
- Heavy Coiled: Movement reduction = 1D6 x 30 yards.
Availability ratio = 4.0. Destroyed on natural barrage roll of 6+. Impassible
to tanks. Gives solid cover bonus against small arms fire. Only used in heavily
prepared primary defense lines.
- 208 | Trench Stops
- During the war, units which had just captured sections of
enemy trenchline would quickly build walls or obstacles across the trench at
the extreme ends of their new positions. These trench stops prevented enemy
attacks and counterattacks from sweeping down the length of the position
without warning. Materials used to build trench stops varied from debris and
wood found in the immediate vicinity to specialized materials brought up with
the assaulting troops for that very purpose.
For game play, any base
may build a trench stop by remaining stationary within a section of trench for
one full turn of movement and rolling a six sided die (1D6). On a die roll
result of 5 or 6, a trench stop is considered to have been successfully built
immediately adjoining the base. Each trench stop causes any unit attempting to
pass through (not across) that section of trench to stop for the turn while
they dismantle the stop. If the stop is immediately adjoined by an enemy unit,
an assault will be triggered instead, giving any unit defending the stop an
additional +1 on the assault die unless the attacker goes "over the top" and
sweeps around the stop, in which case no advantage is gained by either side. A
trench stop is destroyed by the execution of any assault across it, and may be
dismantled by any base which stops to spend one turn dismantling it.
- « Firing
- 301 | Fire-Storms
- Any unit which has five or more "heavy fire" dice thrown
against it in any one fire phase is considered to have suffered a
fire-storm effect, which immediately pins down the unit. At least five
of all fire attack die rolls for the phase must have originated with at least
three of the four following weapon types: On-call or Direct-fire artillery;
Trench mortar; Detached heavy or medium machine gun; Flamethrower.
- 302 | Equipment Damage
- In 1916, entrenched bases which declare themselves as
prone are immune to being fired upon, although they also may not fire. In order
to keep game play simple, the status of involved heavy weapons is left out of
this equation. These weapons actually are subject to damage, even if their crew
has sought cover. Once the crew returns to their original upright position,
they may discover their weapon to be damaged beyond immediate repair.
order to re-create equipment damage, no heavy weapons may be declared as prone
during game play, and field gun bases may not be declared as prone even during
the pre-game bombardment.
- 303 | Friendly Fire
- Inexperienced units often fired on friendly troops during
confusing encounters, especially in woods or during times of darkness. To
re-create this condition, any unit with average, poor or abysmal training level
operating under these two conditions (in woods or darkness) must roll to see if
it inflicts casualties on any friendly units which approaches to within 60
yards. Only one base of each friendly unit may be targeted. The attack is
resolved using the area weapons chart with full modifiers. Both units must be
within full cover. Partially covered or other easily identified units are not
subject to friendly fire.
- 304 | Optional Mortar Fire
- Players who would like to speed up use of trench mortars
may roll on the Area Weapons chart instead of the Direct Artillery Chart. When
using the alternate chart, players should include the following modifiers in
addition to those already used:
Firing against personnel targets: Light
Trench Mortar: -2, Medium Trench Mortar -1.
Firing against tank targets:
Large Trench Mortar: -1, Medium/Light Mortars are No Effect (N/E).
- « Assaults
- 501 | Lone Assaults
- The First World War saw countless lone acts of bravery,
many of which achieved more than whole units. The veteran stormtrooper Ernst
Junger considered daring (and often suicidal) acts by individuals to be one of
the most common reasons for breaking of tactical deadlocks. Indeed, accounts by
all nationalities abound with various heroic acts, from rear-guards being
assaulted by lone warriors to crack shots who crept or charged into enemy
positions and successfully gunned down anyone who wouldn't surrender.
Ironically, the crews who operated machines built for mass slaughter were
sometimes ill-prepared to deal with lone assailants!
A lone assault may
be attempted once per turn, per battalion or regiment (depending on player
preference) against the troop types listed in the chart below. Players should
remember that the modifiers are skewed to provide fewer and fewer "heroes" each
time an attempt is made. Excessive requests for brave acts will meet with
increasing deafness from the less inspired survivors. Also, lone assaults are
only effective against somewhat isolated positions or weak units. Fully
supported enemy battalions with heavy weapons support will usually chew up lone
heroes as quickly as they show themselves!
K = One base killed, D = One base damaged, C = One
||Effect on Target
|Modified Die Roll
||K D C
||K C C
||K C C
||K C C C
Hero Die Roll Modifiers
- Great Brave Hero: +1 to die roll if hero is from a
unit with great training and/or brave morale or better.
- Active Hero: +2 to the die roll if a hero was
successfully requested by this battalion last turn.
- Poor Shaky Hero: -1 to the die roll if the hero is
from a unit with poor training and/or shaky morale or worse.
- Well Led Hero: +1 to die roll if hero is from a
unit commanded a veteran officer.
- Consecutive request: -1 for each previous hero
action requested by this battalion (including both successful and failed
- 120 to 180 yards to target: -1 to the die roll if
the distance from the hero's unit to the targeted base/unit is between 120 and
- 180 to 240 yards to target: -2 to the die roll if
the distance from the hero's unit to the targeted base/unit is between 180 and
240 yards. No heroic attempts are allowed on targets greater than 240 yards
- Target supported: -3 to die roll if the target
base/unit is supported by one or more friendly units.
- Target Pinned/Demoralized: +3 to die roll if the
target base/unit is supported by one or more friendly units.
- 502 | Bomber Parties
- The grenade and its many close relations were viewed very
differently by the various armies of the period. The ANZAC troops who waded
ashore in Turkey were not equipped with any of these handy devices. Their
Turkish opponents had a fair supply of them, and the difference cost the lives
of many brave Commonwealth troops. Similarly, the German fighting on the
Western Front viewed the grenade with great favor, whereas some British
officers treated them with contempt. To add yet another level of variety to
troop performance, players can add these modifiers to the assault values of the
- 1914: German +1
- 1915: Turk vs ANZAC +1, German vs British +1
- 1918: German vs American +1
- « Artillery
- 601 | Veteran Officer - Barrages
- Veteran officers were sometimes able to mitigate the
effects of preparatory barrages based on their previous experience. Common
sense practices ranged from digging elaborate tunnel systems to simple trench
maintenance. One "secret" was to lead the men into no-man's land during the
barrage. This seemingly suicidal act was actually a stroke of genius if the
artillery was firing mostly into the areas of known trenchlines, not into the
unoccupied zone of craters and desolation between trenches. In such cases,
hiding in the craters out in not-man's-land was actually safer than staying in
the trench-lines which were well targeted by the enemy artillery batteries
(This tactic would not work with a rolling barrage, and could actually be
counterproductive. Knowing when to try something was just as important
as knowing what to try).
Any unit under the command of a veteran
officer may roll a die (1D6) if it is targeted by any pre-game barrages. On any
even number result, the officer is assumed to have stuck upon an idea to reduce
casualties and acted upon it. All pre-game barrage die rolls against that unit
suffer an additional minus one (-1) when rolling on the Area Weapons