Close Combat Confusion

Some months after buying the book based on buzz, I’ve found myself with an opportunity to run Fires Over Omac at my local gaming club. Lurking in the forums and reading the wiki has been very helpful, but I thought I’d take the opportunity to clear up a few of my issues.

I’m very confused by Close Combat.My current understanding is this:

  1. I script Close Combat. Tactics or Command gets rolled, we work out the disposition losses. I’m fine with this bit

  2. Everybody in both units scripts a single close combat action.

  3. The Close Combat actions are resolved using the chart independent and versus actions etc, same as with any other scripted conflict.

So, my questions:

a) Everybody? Really? That could be a lot of rolling.

b) There are a bunch of vs. actions in there. How do we decide how the combatants ‘pair up’? Who are the actions compared against?

Also, hi.

a) Yes. But check out pages 506 and 508. Perhaps its not clear there, but if you’re dealing with bajillions of guys, just focus on the unit leaders.

b) You can do it one of two ways: The hard way – choose your target secretly when you choose your action; The nice way – negotiate targets after everyone has declared actions. Neither breaks the game.



As I read the rules, they suggest that you let each shot opportunity represent 15-20% of fire teams shooting/being hit. I guess the same could be used for close combat - if you have massive units you script an action for each fifth (roughly). That might still be a little too much rolling though.

How would you figure disposition loss after a close combat action if you only focused on the officers? I mean, disposition can go down as your men go down with close combats actions - in addition to the loss from the action itself. That’s part of the reason why it’s worth taking the chance, as I understand it.

One thing to consider: if you’re talking about massive teams of soldiers (i.e. hundreds) clashing in Close Combat, it’s very likely that only the front ranks are in actual Close Combat. Soldiers further back could not only be considered as occupying another position, they might even gain a Cover bonus if the front ranks provide shielding (i.e. relatively level terrain).

So you basically could treat (or subdivide) a given position into forward and rear positions, relative to the line of battle… and change them based on maneuvering in later Volleys. For instance, a Flank or Advance could “merge” rearward forces into the forward demi-position, in an all-out scrum.

Hmmm… or just draw the battle space positions to a scale which is reasonable for occupation by the average or most-common team size–after all, you can’t fit a 500-man battalion into a pillbox or farmhouse and have them effectively coordinate and project power (or even move), right?

Of course, as the CC progresses, even huge teams could become utterly embroiled, with no lines but just pockets of fighting. Then you’d fall back to the percentage-based CC “shot opportunity” method (‘smack opportunity?’) to resolve the last of the bloodwork.

Just an idea or two…

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