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Posted on Jun 7, 2004 in Stuff We Like

Anatomy of a Game System

By Tom DeFranco

From that point on in the game, there are severe morale ramifications. If a box or boxes to the left of the checkmark are filled with slashes (for instance, Ripley’s brigade of DH Hill’s division), it would be wise to pull the unit out of line to try to recover stragglers, and thus, unwreck the brigade (of course upon successful recovery, you would erase the slash). When all of the boxes for a brigade are marked, the unit is removed from play.

Now look at the lines which name the division commander (i.e. DH Hill, Ewell, Jackson). Each of their boxes represent one of their brigades. As each brigade in their division gets wrecked one of the division boxes is marked. At the moment that the last box to the left of the division’s checkmark is filled in, the division is wrecked. There are further morale penalties for being a "wrecked brigade of a wrecked division". This is why planning and a keen strategic eye is key in this system.


Rotating units (usually having two divisions up and one back is rule of thumb) is important to succeed in the CWB and the RSS. The system treats these units as valuable commodities instead of removable pieces of cardboard. Like soldiers, they only last so long in the execution of your plans.


Author’s Notes:

All of these games are available from MMP (Multi Man Publishing, also known as the publishers of Advanced Squad Leader) and from Homergames (run by Sandi Hire, formerly with The Gamers).


I want to acknowledge Brian Youse and Dean Essig of MMP/The Gamers for use of the images of the loss sheets and the games’ fire combat charts. I also want to thank Charlie Banks for the picture of our game. Finally, I want to thank Dave Powell for his designing such great games to play.

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