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Made in gb
[DCM]
Tyrant of Badab






HATE Club, East London

So, yesterday, I went to the Anvil Industry Studios and picked up a copy of the Afterlife rulebook. Now that the rules are in a printed form, I decided to post a little review of the rules here, which is currently First Edition, v1.3. Inevitably, as well as revising the rulebook itself, I'll stray into reviewing the rules.

Now, I should declare upfront that I am somewhat biased. I spent £350 on the Kickstarter, and have bought more models since. I've helped Joel playtest the rules, and one or two of my suggestions have even snuck into the rules. Hell, I even got an acknowledgement in the rulebook, so I'm biased! Overall, this is going to be a pretty positive review, and a wishlist of things to come (with a little bit of insider knowledge) rather than any huge criticisms, but hopefully people will find it useful.

The rulebook can be puchased here

General Format, etc.

The book is quite small, just A5, and less than half a centimeter thick. That was a deliberate decision by Joel so that it would fit inside of the starter sets. I'm glad of it personally, as it means I'll not have to cart around a monstrosity like the 40k rulebook, especially the previous edition! The cover art is great. It was done from the Joel's 3d renders of the actual models, and then a fancy digital artist made it all pretty. I think it is a shame there is not more of this art available in yet, but hopefully there'll be more to come in the future. The print quality is very good, and it is all laid out well. It is clearly a professional piece of work, and not "just" a fandex or set of homebrew rules.



I scanned inside the front cover too, because that is me, there, Russell Goodwin, on the acknowledgements page! Yay me!



Layout

The layout of the rules is quite sensible. Things seem to be in a logical order inside the rulebook, which is something I find you can rarely take as a given. Some rules seem to start in the middle, go back to the beginning, add some complexity, explain how to finish, then add in a bunch of special rules. Within the limits of a printed medium, this one has things in an order which actually makes sense, and even if you will, unavoidably, have to flip between pages from time, at least it will make sense where you need to look. I did just notice that there is no index in the back, but with the rules as they are right now, I don't think one is essential. I think one will be needed in later versions though.

Rules

The rules themselves have been streamlined quite a bit from some of the earlier play-tested versions. In some ways, this is a shame, as the original act/react mechanic was very tactical, but it did make the game too slow. The current act/react mechanic does flow very smoothly. Rather than a 40k style your turn/my turn system, units activate alternating from player to player until all units have been. This is, I believe, the way many or most games of this type seem to be going. The order you activate your units does make a big difference to you chances of success, which I think is one of the big pluses of the game. If you have lots more units than your opponent, there is a chance some of your units might not get to activate, so you need to be careful there too. I think this represents elite units out-maneuvering a larger cumbersome force quite well. Every time your unit is attacked, it has a chance to react, although those chances go down for each subsequent attempt to react, which I think represents an elite force being overwhelmed by greater numbers quite well. See how that works?

There are multiple unit types, such as infantry, exo-mech, machine and so on, and multiple weapon types, such as small arms, melee, heavy, etc. There are also lots of special rules, such as fragmenting, which replaces the blast template mechanic of 40k, and sniper, which allows you to stay hidden. In some ways, I think there might be too many weapon types for an early version of the game, but there are still fewer than, say 40k, and they do each work in different ways which affect the game uniquely, so overall, I would be sad to see them go now that I have them available to me!

My favourite mechanic is the Fog of War rules. ALL units deploy from reserve, and enter with a "hidden" counter. You have to use your forces wisely to reveal your enemies before being able to attack them. In some play-test scenarios Joel and I played, this created some great situations in which some well-positioned snipers played a huge role in the way things panned out. It serves to prevent two armies sitting there in a gunline strategy just shooting each other, but on other occasions has made it far harder for attacking forces to assault entrenched positions. Overall, it is a big part of the gameplay.

One rule (from the advanced section) that I've rarely used as part of play-testing is the suppression system, but it looks like a good system. I've only done one or two breach & clears from the advanced rules section. I haven't really got my head around it yet, and it seems quite involved, but Joel has assured me in the past it is really quite simple!

Overall, it is a fun experience, requiring a lot more strategy and tactical consideration than the big guy out there, 40k.

Scenarios

One shame is that there are no scenarios in this rules release. Joel and I have generally just picked up a few models we feel like using and created little scenarios, like getting into a room to access a network, escaping an ambush, and so on. Having played a bit of Frostgrave recently, I think I'll try and play a few games where two forces are rushing into an area to recover some sort of resource and get them off the table edge, rather than 40k style take-and-hold objectives, but either are viable. With the character pack, assassination/bodyguard style scenarios are also very possible.



I hope and assume that scenarios will be released in pdf form, and it already hints this will be the case on the website, so I don't think we'll have to wait too long. I'll be preparing one or two myself, and hopefully Joel/Chas will adapt them and give them the professional treatment.

Background

The background is little more than a couple of paragraphs at the start of the rulebook and hints in the unit descriptions, but in an internet age, I think that is the best decision for a rulebook. Everything you could want to read is here . I think a future rulebook could use a double-page summary, but any more than that would be too much for a small, portable rulebook.

Army Lists



The army lists describe forces for the Unity Council and the Pan-Continental Republic. Joel has told me about one or two new factions he has planned (I won't give them away here), and there are rules for making your own faction by combining forces from either list, though then you will lose the special rules that Unity and Republic forces get, and you are at a cost penalty.

Although I helped with the play-testing, I had nothing to do with deciding points cost, but they are in line with what I'd have expected. It is all quite simple. It is probably the section of the game most similar to 40k, but Joel has never intended that the game be "balanced" in every scenario. Scenarios in which, for example, a small force of spectre operatives do a commando raid against a larger republic force, but with a specific objective instead of aiming to kill everyone would be incredibly fun.

Still to come

The one big thing missing is the vehicle rules, but I knew that would be the case. The vehicle rules really are brilliant, but I know Joel wants them to be completely polished before releasing them. The other reason that leaving them out of this release is the correct decision is that it will give people a chance to learn the main rules before having to worry about the vehicle rules too. It is a huge shame, but they'll be available in the medium term, so look forward to that!

Special character rules are also missing from this release, which was quite a surprise as they've been in every version of the rules that I have seen. However, it makes sense that this would make for good pdf releases for each special character. There are also no profiles for some of the models released yet, such as the Republic mauler drill and and the Unity drone, but they are niche units, so again, I assume pdf rules will come soon.

Summary

This is a fully playable version of the rules, and you'll get a great deal of enjoyment from the game as is stands. Whilst it is fully playable, there is still more to come. Right now it can't be said to be 10/10, but it is a solid game, easily 8/10, and probably better than that.

I'll be sitting down next and working out a couple of forces to use at my local games club and I'll share them here too, with my thoughts on which of the most iconic units to include for introducing the game to people.

This message was edited 6 times. Last update was at 2017/02/08 20:54:07


Models purchased in 2017: 12
Models painted in 2017: 0 
   
Made in gb
[DCM]
Tyrant of Badab






HATE Club, East London

And now I'm going to offer the first questions for FAQs for Joel.

1. If you take a single Fire Support Tracer Exo-Mech to attach to a Marine Corps Infantry unit, does it count towards your elite units allowance, or as part of the core unit you attach it to?

2. The Grenadier Team entry says you can replace one battle rifle with a HEAT missile system. I assume this is only for the regular grenadier core units, not in a grenadier anti-armour support unit, but this is not 100% clear. Please clarify.

3. In the breach and clear rules, on page 17, third column, final paragraph, you refer to Command Orders Rules. Do these still exist? Are they something to do with Special Characters? Will they be added later, or have they been removed?

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Made in gb
Dakka Veteran





Hello!

@Fifty thanks for creating this thread and reviewing the rules.

Yes - Lots more artwork is planned over the coming months, we hope for an art piece for every unit and several additional larger pieces.

We stuck with a compact version because it allows us to get the rules out there asap and people can play and feedback, it also keeps the production cost as low as possible so we can sell it for around a fiver instead of £15-30 for many larger rulebooks.

This printed edition will likely be the only version of the rules for at least 12 months, and the plan at some point is to create a full size rulebook with all the art, background, painting guides, galleries, missions etc you would expect from a full size "proper" book, as well as additional and improved rules!

We will certainly add an index in a future version.

Planned Free PDF downloads as soon as we can get them ready-

2-3 A4 page "quick print" PDF with a summary of the key rules, and quick reference stats, for in game use.
Character rules and background
Vehicle rules, including for some future vehicles not yet released - (get proxing those helicopter gunships!)
Narrative Missions for the Shards of Liberty strikes.


AFTERLIFE RULES V1.3 ERRATA/CLARIFICATIONS (Which I will try to keep updated in this pose).

General Rules Errata/FAQ-

The reference to Command Orders is accidentally included - they do not form part of the current core rules, but will make an appearance in the Named Characters PDF.


Unity Council Unit Rules


Tracer - A single Fire Support Tracer can be included with a Marine Corp unit, counts as part of the Marine Corp Unit, and cannot be separated from it. The entire unit counts as "Infantry" for the purposes of being Fragile.

Warden Mech - When using the split fire rule to target two separate Units, the opposing play can choose only ONE of the Units to make a Reaction. Resolve the Firefight with the Unit reacting first, and then make the second attack against the other Unit with any surviving Wardens.

Pan-Continental Republic Unit Rules -

Grenadiers - A Unit of regular Grenadiers can have a single HEAT missile. The Grenadier anti-armour team is always either 2 or 3 Teams, with each team fielding a battle rifle and a HEAT missile.



I'm very happy to answer any other questions people have about specific rules or the game system in general..



   
Made in gb
[DCM]
Tyrant of Badab






HATE Club, East London

Joel played a friend of mine at my gaming club this week, and I watched on. I've written half a dozen scenarios and they tested out one of those. It was a fun game to watch.

The mission was simply to recover some valuable salvage from the board and escape from the edge with it. Six pieces in total. Joel, playing as the Republic, was very unfortunate that when he brought his Goliath out of cover to gun down some Warden robots, he actually LOST the reaction roll by a mile, and even worse, was destroyed by them before he could even return fire! That pretty much took out Joel's centre-ground. Joel looked like he might just scrape a draw, but he lost the initiative, and Rick took out a Raider 'mech that was carrying some salvage. Joel's few remaining Grenadiers and Pulse-Mechs fled with two pieces of salvage rather than take on Rick's remaining Exo-Mechs. Spectre Operatives, Unity Guard, Bastion support weapons AND Warden robots!





This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2016/06/17 18:14:02


Models purchased in 2017: 12
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Made in us
Veteran Knight Baron in a Crusader







Where did you get the material for the fences with the circles?
   
Made in gb
[DCM]
Tyrant of Badab






HATE Club, East London

Sorry, I have no idea, it is just terrain at my local club, not my own.

Models purchased in 2017: 12
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Made in gb
[DCM]
Tyrant of Badab






HATE Club, East London

So, Wednesday was a pretty good day. I had my new shed delivered, picked up a new set of second hand terrain and managed to get three friends from my gaming club to play Afterlife, and had great feedback on it from them.

There are a couple more bits to the terrain than I'm showing here, so it can easily fill a full 4x4 table. We decided to use it for our game of Afterlife. It was just about big enough to use the regular rules everywhere. We probably could/should have used the breach and clear rules, but everyone was playing their first game, so we just wanted to get the basic rules over to people.


I was originally planning to play against James (who Joel might remember from when James went to the studio way back at the same time I first ever went there), but Dan found himself without anything to play, so we got him into play some Afterlife. Dan hadn't read the rules, so I coached Dan. We made a little 450 point scenario, with James defending that round room against Dan. Dan didn't quite make it, as James still had two guys left blocking the doorway when Dan's last guy dropped.It was good fun. One point of note was when Dan's Stim Hounds charged some commando's, and both Dan and I were excited to see the carnage that the dogs would cause, but then the commando's dropped them all on a reaction before they ever even bit anyone.




After that, a guy I'd not met before, Dave, was very interested. He had a game against Dan, and this time Dan went on the defense. Dan took a different approach to James. This time though, the dogs did manage to maul a few grenadiers. Once again, it came to a tight finish, though the attackers were successful and Dan lost again.

Happily, gave Dan a lift home and he enjoyed the game immensely despite losing! Dave also seemed keen to play again. James will definietly play again, as he has a fair few miniatures already and he and I have been planning to play for ages.





One issue that came up was that the dogs were in melee with some grenadiers. I don't think there are any rules preventing a squad from moving away when they have had melee attacks made against them in the previous round? That would mean the squad could move away 6", shoot the dogs, but even if the dogs won the reaction roll off, their 2" melee attack would be lost... Did I misinterpret the rules, or is there some way to still let the dogs get their reaction attack? Maybe movement within 2" triggers a reaction, or something?

We had a blast.

Models purchased in 2017: 12
Models painted in 2017: 0 
   
Made in gb
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Tyrant of Badab






HATE Club, East London

I thought of another question whilst re-reading the rules.

The rules do not say whether you can detect one unit, and then attack a different, previously detected unit, but it is implied and it would seem sensible that you cannot. I think the answer to my next question is "no" but I'll ask it anyway just to be sure;

Can a unit make an attempt to detect one unit, and, whether not they are successful, then attack a different unit that has already been detected?

Models purchased in 2017: 12
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Made in gb
[DCM]
Zealous Witch Finder






HATE Club, East London

Thanks for the game last night, Russ. I really enjoyed it as a game, and though I'd get my thoughts and what I can remember of the rules issues down for you and Joel, while I'm sitting in an airport waiting lounge and doing nowt else...!

- First, this is a really enjoyable game. Russ started us off with the basics, but by Turn 2 we were pretty much playing each other on our own. The Detect/React mechanic is really simple once you get to know it, and tactical choices like Suppression make immediate sense once you've played a few turns. I enjoyed it so much I've already purchased a starter set. The Happy Weiner Vegan Sausage Corporation (a subsidiary of Radoni Corp) will hit the table soon enough.

- Suppression seems like a really good idea, but we tended to find that it only ever seemed to happen towards the end of the turn, and the turn end would remove the tokens anyway, so we didn't see much of its effects. Maybe we should have been aiming to suppress active units earlier? Either way, it's a nice mechanic, and maybe would benefit from more weapons that utilise it - like grenades that force suppression rolls with negative modifiers, or specialised units for suppressing (kinda like the doggies work as a 'detect your guys' unit).

- We played on a table with a fair amount of scenery - less than Infinity or Necromunda but more than 40k. Even so, my 5 Republic Snipers kinda dominated the game. We talked about various things you could do to change Snipers, but actually the problem seemed to be that they were 48" away and nothing could get close enough to detect them. So my forward units detected a lot of the Unity squads early on, but the Snipers were still hidden by Turn 4/5 and would get Hidden and Cover bonuses when reacting, which makes them pretty invulnerable. I wonder if a solution would be to slightly change the Detect rules so that, while its very difficult to detect an opponent over 24" away who keeps shooting at you, it could still be done?

- Cover didn't really seem to do that much. Even units behind something quite big and solid seemed to get something like a 7+ save which didn't seem to have too much effect, or felt a bit weird compared to what it looked like on the table. Agreed in the case of Mechs and stuff, but infantry feel like they should be able to use it better?

- Rules Query - when a unit has two weapons and can fire them at different things (Unity Robot Guys) do you complete the first set of reactions, then choose the second target, then resolve the second targets reactions, or do you do it all the reactions at once?

All of this might just be us not using the rules properly but yeah. Really fun. Also, it's interesting to see how this compares to MEdge, which we bought at the start of the year, and seems quite similar in style and gameplay. However, the MEdge rules are really complex, and we kinda dropped it after attempting to play it a couple of times. This is a similar sort of game, with a similar scale of units and weapons, but much easier to learn. I'm tempted to 'do a Mantic' at some point and write some house rules for the Lots Of Robots Mining Corporation and the Creepy Smooth Armour Genetic Corporation to play with those models, and maybe tempt some people with those models over to Afterlife....


This message was edited 2 times. Last update was at 2016/08/18 07:43:55


   
Made in gb
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Tyrant of Badab






HATE Club, East London

I have some FAQ questions and clarification requests from last night's game;

1) If you fire a frag (4) weapon at a unit of 4 Raider exo mech, you'd score 4 hits. If all four wounded, would you cause 4 wounds, allocate 2 wounds each to two Raiders, and kill two, or apply one wound to each Raider, and all four survive? I understand it to be the first option, but am not 100% sure.

2) When a hidden unit is getting its extra 6" movement, it also has to be more then 12" away from the enemy, and out of LOS. Is this totally out of LOS, or would an LOS heavily obscured by cover count to allow the extra 6"? Probably fully out of LoS, and I suspect it was due to the fact the board we played on last night was fairly low on fully LoS blocking terrain. It meant most units probably shouldn't have had this, even though I allowed it in the first turn.

3) Stim Hounds can only attack Exo-Mechs or Machines if no infantry are available to attack. Does that mean no infantry available to attack this turn or no infantry to attack anywhere on the board? Last night it turned out to not matter, but in a slightly different situation it would have been very important.

4) Imagine a line of Ajax mechs lined up base-to-base. A commando can see past the Ajax's at the lone infantry figure behind them. Can the commando shoot the figure behind the mechs? If so, do the mechs give a cover save?

5) This is repeating Ian's query, and adding to it. - Crane C-48 Warden Mechs can attack with their Firestone Missile system, then attack again with their other weapons, and not necessarily at the same target. Each attack is described as being a separate attack. When they fire at their first target, it will get to react. If they fire their second weapon at a different target, does it get to react? I assume yes. If they fire their second weapon at the same target as their Firestone missiles, does the same target get to react again, as it is described as a second attack?

I will compile the various FAQ questions from this thread at some point, but I don't feel like it is too cluttered just yet.

Ian already commented on the impact the Commando Sniper Team had. For the first time ever, we used a squad of 5. They dominated until very late in the game. We discussed a few options about how to tone them down last night. The obvious one is "more terrain" but this won't always work. There is also the fact that in some scenarios, they might not be very useful. However, I now think the biggest problem was that there were five of them. I think if the unit size were 1-3 instead of 4-6, then the force composition rules would prevent them from having so much impact in a "Salvage" mission (basically Frostgrave mission) and the basic "Kill Them All" way of playing. An alternative would be to let you buy 1-6 from the same slot, but each sniper then operates as a separate unit. This would slow down gameplay, BUT, it might lead to that player having lots more unit, and therefore not getting to activate all of his units, so he'd have to plan very carefully. Not really sure what the solution is here, but on the "wrong" board, in the "wrong" mission, they are all-conquering as they are.

Also, we discussed the Unity Guard. They have a toughness of 9, which is the same as Unity Marines. However, the models look far less armoured than the marines, even considering the fact they could be wearing armour under their coat. Maybe toughness 8 would be more fitting?

Also, from my own perspective, I love the Unity Guard models, so I use them, but they are 1 credit more than marines. They have 1 more point of nerve, but that does not seem hugely important compared to their inferior weapon, and worse reaction. I'm going to repeat something I said before here. I think their shotguns should have a solid slug mode with the profile it has now, plus another mode; range 8, burst 1, damage 3, frag (2) to represent scatter shot. Most of the time, the str would be increased to 4 due to being withing 6" with small arms. This 8" range would also have synergy with their flame thrower. This would mean each core Unity infantry would have a clear battlefield role. Crane C-25 Heavy Infantry are the long range, static guys, Marines would be the medium range, jacks of all trades, and Unity Guard would be the slightly fragile guys who mess infantry up real bad if you let them get close. As it stands, unity guard are more expensive, but worse, and their only advantage is being able to take the flame thower.

Alternatively, Ian suggested they could have some sort of special deployment rules, such as some sort of infiltrating or flanking ability. This would represent the fact they are a security force, not a true battlefield-type unit.

On a related note, Republic have two core infantry types - Grenadiers, who can take on mechs with their battle rifles, and commandos who are clearly going to be aimed at taking out soft infantry targets. Unity core infantry all have Str 4 weapons, just varying range and burst value, so all unity guard are going to mainly target infantry and maybe low toughness mechs, they'll just do it from different ranges. Admittedly there are recon tracers with slightly higher strength, and a bit more of an all-rounder, but I just wonder if there isn't a way to differentiate between their role more in the next version of the army list.

Finally, just to say I'm really pleased to have been able to get a few others playing lately. I've concentrated on helping others play their first games, but now I am really looking forward to playing properly myself. I don't know the rules perfectly, so I plan to write up a movement summary page and an attack flow-chart, and then I reckon I'll be pretty good with the rules. I'm still loving the game, and now that I've played it on a few different densities of terrain, I think it stands up well in more circumstances

Models purchased in 2017: 12
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Made in gb
[DCM]
Zealous Witch Finder






HATE Club, East London

 Fifty wrote:

An alternative would be to let you buy 1-6 from the same slot, but each sniper then operates as a separate unit. This would slow down gameplay, BUT, it might lead to that player having lots more unit, and therefore not getting to activate all of his units, so he'd have to plan very carefully. Not really sure what the solution is here, but on the "wrong" board, in the "wrong" mission, they are all-conquering as they are.


Reducing squad size might well do it. I was mentioning detection rules because this same problem might occur with any unit that has long-ranged, powerful-weapons and a good field of view.

I wonder if we need to test play them a bit more before rushing to judgement, though. We might find that, aware of how strong a long ranged sniper unit is, we might play more aggressively with fast units to make sure we can detect them. If the same thing keeps happening (that the fast units get blown away before they get close enough) then we can confirm its an issue.


Alternatively, Ian suggested they could have some sort of special deployment rules, such as some sort of infiltrating or flanking ability. This would represent the fact they are a security force, not a true battlefield-type unit.


Yeah, that was something I found weird about the Unity Guard - that they look very different to the other infantry in the game with much less armour. Yet they're just as tough. I know they could be wearing armour under their jackets but the models don't look like they are. If they're meant to be the scary Gestapo\SS guys but aren't as heavily armed and armoured as battlefield infantry, then could their 'thing' be that they get to sneak around the board differently - start on the board, or enter in a similar way to Infiltrate or Outflank in That Other Game.

-------

ALSO, I started building a Battlescribe file for Afterlife on the plane home. Just finished all the Unity Council units in the book, and starting on the Republic ones over the weekend. A few issues for the FAQ came up:

- Tracer Exo-Mechs - If you kill all the Fire Support mechs in a mixed unit of FS and Recon, do the Recon mechs still have to use the Fire Support profile? If they revert to their own profile, would it make make more sense to say “You can also choose to have a mixed unit of both types. However, while any Fire Support Tracers are part of the unit, the whole unit uses the Fire Support profile.”
- Tracer Exo-Mechs - when attaching a Fire Support Tracer to a unit of Marine Corps Infantry, do you buy this Tracer as part of the Tracer Unit and then attach it before the game, or is it bought as part of the Marine Corps Unit (and is therefore a Core choice, not contributing to the Tracer Unit Limit of 2)
- Stim Hounds - These can be released ‘when the player chooses’. So, I can move the handler unit in their activation (and the Stim-Hounds move with them), then later in the same turn, choose to release the hounds. The Stim Hounds can then be activated themselves, which means they get two moves in the same turn. Is that intentional? If not, then I’d suggest that releasing the hounds happens at the start of a Game Turn, like un-pairing Infantry from Bastion Platforms.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2016/08/19 13:35:13


   
Made in gb
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Tyrant of Badab






HATE Club, East London

I just noticed that Joel already answered two of our questions

Unity Council Unit Rules

Tracer - A single Fire Support Tracer can be included with a Marine Corp unit, counts as part of the Marine Corp Unit, and cannot be separated from it. The entire unit counts as "Infantry" for the purposes of being Fragile.

Warden Mech - When using the split fire rule to target two separate Units, the opposing play can choose only ONE of the Units to make a Reaction. Resolve the Firefight with the Unit reacting first, and then make the second attack against the other Unit with any surviving Wardens.




Automatically Appended Next Post:
Battlescribe files will be incredibly useful. I'd have done them myself if I knew how, or had time to figure them out!

In between bouts of decorating our new house and packing up our old flat I've put together a movement reference sheet which puts every single movement rule together on one A4 page.

My next job will be to create a flow-chart to run through the attack procedure and try to include as many special rules as possible as part of it, with pull-outs for those bits that aren't included.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2016/08/19 20:03:13


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[MOD]
Mallax Untain






Svalarheima, MA

AFTERLIFE is definitely on my 'buy real soon' list, even though in all reality that means 'buy in March/April 2017 when the tax return money is in'!

You guys are getting me excited to give it a go though...

Nil nos tremefacit.
 
   
Made in gb
[DCM]
Tyrant of Badab






HATE Club, East London

Come to London, I'll be happy to teach you how to play!

Models purchased in 2017: 12
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Made in gb
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Zealous Witch Finder






HATE Club, East London

Afterlife Battlescribe Repository at https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/4104995/Games/Afterlife.bsr

These are just the units from the 1.3 rulebook at the moment. I also can't account for the additional percentage increases once something is over it's Unit Limit. Once I've filled this a bit more with some of the downloadable rules, I'll upload it 'properly' to the Battlescribe repository sites...

Russ, maybe maybe this a sticky in the top post??

   
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Tyrant of Badab






HATE Club, East London

A sticky post? Do you mean C&P and edit into the first post of this thread?

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Zealous Witch Finder






HATE Club, East London

 Fifty wrote:
A sticky post? Do you mean C&P and edit into the first post of this thread?


Yep!

Also, are the rules for special characters and the like on the site? Can't seem to find any rules to add to the BS files!

   
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Tyrant of Badab






HATE Club, East London

Special Characters were in v1.2 but were removed for v1.3 and will presumably be added in a future version or expansion pdf.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2016/08/22 20:06:03


Models purchased in 2017: 12
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Tyrant of Badab






HATE Club, East London

Ian, there is no separate entry for fire support exo-mechs. They are an elite choice.

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HATE Club, East London

Pulse mechs or Tracers??

   
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Tyrant of Badab






HATE Club, East London

Tracers


Automatically Appended Next Post:
Also, if you have two units of grenadiers and increase the unit size of one, the other also increases.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2016/08/26 17:10:41


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Fifty wrote:Ian, there is no separate entry for fire support exo-mechs. They are an elite choice.

Fifty wrote:Tracers. Also, if you have two units of grenadiers and increase the unit size of one, the other also increases.


Both these have been updated. New repository at the same link. There is now an entry for 'Tracer Exo Mechs' in Elites that starts with three FS Tracers and allows you to add and remove those and Recon Tracers. There is then a separate entry called 'Recon Tracer Exo Mechs' in the Core section.

I'd mistakenly set up a load of the units as 'Collective' when I shouldn't have, which is why all units were incrementing the same way. I've gone through and turned this off of everything.

Can't wait to get assembling - my Republic starter order seems to have got delayed/lost in the post, though. I'm in Austria at the moment - hoping it's sitting in my flat when I get back

   
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Ian and I played again last night. I have a few comments on the game.

1) For the first time, Nerve and Suppression checks really seemed to be a factor. This might have been because I seemed to fail them all! I actually came very close to losing a couple of squads due to the rules about suppression markers on fragile squads, but just about passed my checks. This got me thinking more about them, and I really like the fact that you are less likely to become fragile if you start as a bigger squad, but the consequences of becoming fragile might also be worse for bigger squads, as you stand to lose more models. It also made me realise that EMPs do have a place against infantry, as it causes automatic hits, and therefore suppression checks. I think there were also a couple of occasions when I was making the second or third suppression checks in a turn that I did not apply the -2 modifier, but I was rolling 9 or 10 so consistently anyway that I doubt it made a difference! We need to remember that though. We also need to be certain to remember the -2 modifier for subsequent reaction checks on the same turn.

2) We had lots of cover on the board of various thickness, including lots of very thin, lightweight fences. Some of the shots we were making, though feasible, seemed like they should have had a tougher cover save. In discussion afterwards, Ian suggested a modified version of cover saves;

Give every obstacle a cover value. The lightest cover would have a value of 1, or 2, up to 3 or 4 for the very heaviest cover. When you should a target, add together the cover value of all of the obstacles in between, except for those within 3" of the attacker. So, shooting through two thin fences and a set of girders might be 1+1+2 = 4. The target then has to roll UNDER 4 to succeed in his save. This makes it easy to combine saves by doing simple addition, makes it so that the attackers is always trying to roll OVER something, whilst the target tries to roll UNDER a target, plus it is different to 40k that way!

Although shooting through lots of cover would quickly make the cover saves very easy, this seems like a GOOD thing, as although you might not be completely behind LOS blocking terrain, it should give you confidence to move forwards aggressively, relying on cover saves from lots of light cover.

3) We are still enjoying the game immensely and finding lots of different playstyles, tactics and enjoying trying out different scenarios. I'm going to try to add another batch to my set I have written so far.


Automatically Appended Next Post:
Also, Ian, in the Republic entry, there is something odd with Pulse Mechs. 4 only cost 65 points total, but it says there should be 16 weapon choices...


Automatically Appended Next Post:
And another question for Joel. Taurus missile systems are thermal and fragmenting (4) but not missiles. Should they be?


Automatically Appended Next Post:
And another one for Ian...

Having a Force Commander correctly reduces the max number of grenadiers to 9, but it should also reduxe the minimum number to 5, I think.

This message was edited 3 times. Last update was at 2016/09/08 21:34:55


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 Fifty wrote:
Give every obstacle a cover value. The lightest cover would have a value of 1, or 2, up to 3 or 4 for the very heaviest cover. When you should a target, add together the cover value of all of the obstacles in between, except for those within 3" of the attacker. So, shooting through two thin fences and a set of girders might be 1+1+2 = 4. The target then has to roll UNDER 4 to succeed in his save. This makes it easy to combine saves by doing simple addition, makes it so that the attackers is always trying to roll OVER something, whilst the target tries to roll UNDER a target, plus it is different to 40k that way!

Although shooting through lots of cover would quickly make the cover saves very easy, this seems like a GOOD thing, as although you might not be completely behind LOS blocking terrain, it should give you confidence to move forwards aggressively, relying on cover saves from lots of light cover.


Yeah, I agree this seemed weird. We'd have people who could SEE units on the other side of the board - through two mesh fences, over the rubble they're currently in, and through the rubble the enemy unit is in! The enemy unit got a 7+ same for concrete rubble, but the shot seemed like it should be really, really difficult.

The idea we talked through would mean that a single piece of cover on it's own is still the same - a Cover 4 wall is essentially the same as a 7+ save. But, trying to shoot across the whole board through multiple bits of terrain is very difficult, which would encourage movement towards the enemy. It's also really easy to measure and figure out on the board. You kinda don't even need 'model eye view' (unless you're in an elevated position). Use the tape measure to make a straight line and add up everything is passes over. Would probably need some thought towards units with models in and out of cover.

It also means that offensive actions (to hit and damage) need to roll OVER something, while defensive (cover and nerve) need to roll UNDER something. It might also make long-ranged sniper duels even harder.

 Fifty wrote:

- Also, Ian, in the Republic entry, there is something odd with Pulse Mechs. 4 only cost 65 points total, but it says there should be 16 weapon choices...
- Having a Force Commander correctly reduces the max number of grenadiers to 9, but it should also reduce the minimum number to 5, I think.


I'll get those changed today!

EDIT - The repository has been updated.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2016/09/09 08:50:09


   
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Tyrant of Badab






HATE Club, East London

Pulse Mechs still seem weird. They don't seem to cost anything.

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Tyrant of Badab






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So, last night my friend Dan and I played a game of Afterlife on a very different board. It was pretty cool. Here are some photos and some videos... We used some random scatter terrain from our club to set up some structure zones so that we could use the breach and clear rules. In one corner was a lift running from floors 1-5, and in the other, a lift running from floors 5-10. As you can see, several floors were more or less open, with stairs going up and down. We also used the rule from Afterlife that squads can use up their entire movement to move directly up and down from the floor they are on by finding trapdoors, squeezing through vents or just outright blasting their way through the floor.

We played a sceario with 6 objectives, one on each of the six middle floors. The objectives could be captured and held by either side, and carried with units. Whoever held them at the end of the game got the points.

Dan was proxying some Raging Heroes Toughest Girls in the Galaxy for his Unity Council forces.
















Conclusions about the board;

Only one floor had overlap for the lifts. It would be best if instead of only having both lift shafts running to floor 5, they both ran to floors 4-6. Dan has already made some X pieces to use as walls to split floors into four areas. Each floor is easily big enough to count as open space, so adding in some structure zones brings some variety. The floors can easily be re-arrranged to put more of the balcony type levels together to make larger atrium areas, which I htink would be good. Some of the floors without atrium levels would still benefit from having stairs up and down through far smaller cutouts..

Overall, the board game a vibe very like Dredd, Die Hard or (although I've not seen it) The Raid, which was what Dan was going for. It is a lot of fun and in a very condensed space.

Some thoughts about the game rules:

As we've played a bit more, we have started to think that Reaction Fire is still a little bit too powerful. I've just noticed that I've been misremembering the rules and that second and subsequent reactions get a -3 modifier, not the -2 modifier I thought it was. Actually though, I now think that even the frst time a squad reacts it should be -2, the second time -4, third time -6 and so on. That way the attacking squad will always have a slight advantage, which seems like a good idea.

Also, instead or as well, support weapons being halved and rounded down has already been discussed, but maybe even regular weapons should be halved and rounded up? Not sure about that though.

Thoughts on Unity Council Rules:

The Unity Council list only has army-wide special rules that apply to exo-mechs and machines. That seems like it might be suitable for the planned Crane faction, but two weeks in a row, we've skipped army wide rules because the unity player would have had no benefit. I would suggest that once/game the unity player gets t activate two units in a row to execuste a double-whammy on some more unsuspecting units.

Also, there is a noticeable absence of 6 and 7 damage weaponry in the unity council lists. We felt the best way to fix this would be if fire support tracers woudl damage 6 or 7.

Thoughts on Republic forces

I've used Raiders for a few games in a row now. Whilst the mechs themselves might be a fraction overcosted, the tri-cannons upgrade definitely feel overpowered. They should probably be down to damage 6 or maybe even 5. Three Raiders throw out NINE Damage 7 hits right now, which is a bit insane for just 30 points upgrade.

Dan felt that my Pulse mechs were overpowered in this game. They did pretty well the last time we played too. Part of the issues i that Unity Council weapons are either high strength and few shots or low strength. In the Peach Trees game I also took flight packs. Dice rolls affecting the Pulse Mechs worked hugely in my favour in this game, so I did not feel they were as overpowered as Dan did, especially as they were 1/4 or my entire force, but part of me thinks that toughness 12 is too high when they have the flight packs. Perhaps they should be -1 toughness and +1 reaction when you take the flight pack?

Finally, from the previous game we played, I would like to suggest that the grenadier missile teams have a "spotter" rule that allows the guy with the battle rifle to forego shooting and in exchange the missile guy gets +1 BS.

Conclusion

Still loving the game. Starting to feel like I know which units can achieve what. I got thumped by another guy from my gaming club, Maciek, in his first ever game, but in the two games since against Dan I have used my Raiders and Pulse mechs very differently tactically and it has really paid off. I was using the Pulse Mechs too aggrssively from early in the game, and I've switched to using them as a rapid response squad instead and they seem more effective that way. Let the Raiders do the heavy lifting!

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2016/12/29 20:42:54


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Tyrant of Badab






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For those who are following Afterlife still, have a look at this blog post on the Anvil Industry website.

I wrote that scenario, and then they made it pretty and put it up as a PDF

I hope this thread is not becoming an echo chamber!

Anvil Industry wrote:Jungle Abduction

Afterlife Battle Report by Russ



After the recent huge game at the Studio, we played a smaller game at a games club in Bethnal Green. This time, we tried out a scenario with a specific objective instead of just trying to eliminate the enemy forces. The scenario represented an attempt to abduct a scientist from a jungle base. A small special ops force had infiltrated behind enemy lines and almost made it back with their prize. As the enemy made a rescue attempt, a small force arrived to help the abductors make it back the last short distance. We each took it in turns to play as both the kidnapper and the rescuer. We played with 1000 points per side (and felt that it would work better with the rescuer having a slight points advantage).



Game 1

In the first game my commando strike force struck out towards the table edge as soon as possible, so as to prevent any possibility of Joel initiating a breach and clear and trapping them in the building where they started. Joel's Unity Guard threw themselves recklessly into the action and were wiped out quickly by the massed firepower of eight crisis carbines in the hands of my commando’s!

Elsewhere on a flank, my grenadiers and Goliath fell to Joel's Ajax Exo-Mechs, but my Raiders were able to gain revenge and secure that flank. Joel's forces were stretched too thinly by now and with victory for the abduction team inevitable, we set up to repeat the mission with Joel in my position.



Game 2

In the second game, with a deployment rules change making it impossible for me to reach the building on the first turn, and with a "rolling deployment zone" rule being introduced, Joel's kidnapping Spectres hunkered down in the building to prevent me deploying my forces too far up the table. I deployed Raiders and a Goliath on one flank, and Grenadiers and Commandos from the other.

My Goliath and Raiders both failed to deal with Joel's Ajax, and even Joel's Unity Guard seemed quite tough, though all but one of the Spectres were killed.

As things fell apart on one flank, my Grenadiers and Commandos made a desperate rush across the battlefield, only to run headlong into the same Ajax that had already dealt with my Raiders and Goliath. The grenadier missile launcher, however, only managed to distract the enemy as it missed each time, and although the rest of the commando and grenadier shooting was stunningly accurate, the ammo was clearly defective as huge number of rounds deflected off the Ajax mechs. With plenty of forces left and the Ajax mechs an impassable barrier to the Republic, the Unity Squad made good their escape with the prisoner.



If you would like to try this scenario, we’ve made a PDF which you can download HERE

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Hey all! Fifty kindly directed me to this thread, and it's great to see all these comments about Afterlife! Fifty, I love the Peach Trees terrain that you used in that one scenario, that is incredibly cool.

I got into Afterlife last month after using a few of Anvil's "Regiments" squads for FUBAR. One purchase led to another...and before I knew it, I ended up with the entire range of figures! What a fun game, and a highly compelling backstory. I love painting the miniatures, too, which are posted on my DakkaDakka page here.

My friend and I have run through a few different scenarios: assassinations, raids, and straight up "kill the other side" battles. The rules and story are highly flexible and allow for fast gameplay, which we enjoy. The folks at the other table will be unloading their 400 Tyrannids and enormous Titans for turn 1 of 40k, and we'll have finished up a highly satisfying, highly tactical game.

Comments/questions about the rules:

1. Arbitorian's comments about cover really ring true for me. We find that cover rarely results in saves, and have since chalked this issue up to the fast-paced nature of the game. Mentally, though, it would be satisfying to see units be a bit hardier, because non-hero units really can get wiped out FAST. I'm not sure if my heart can take watching an entire unit of 6 Unity Guard get wiped out again.

2. Similarly, Arbitorian's comments about suppression also ring true for me. We've really only ever had 1 or 2 instances of a unit being suppressed, and are considering a house rule to increase the -1 modifier to however many wounds the unit suffered, right off the bat. So, for example, a unit that takes two wounds would have a -2 for the suppression test even for its first suppression roll.

3. Reaction attacks: My buddy and I have struggled a bit with the reaction system, particularly in the cases of hidden units attacking detected ones. It felt a little strange/anti-climactic for a hidden unit to jump out at a visible unit and then get shot up in a preemptive reaction before it's finally able to deliver its surprise attack. So, we made a house rule that hidden units ALWAYS attack first against non-hidden units, regardless of reaction values. What do you guys think about this rule? Are we misinterpreting anything in the rulebook that could simplify it?

4. Detection: The two concerns we had about detection in the game are that (1) It seems a bit tough for units to go *back* to being hidden, particularly on smaller boards; and (2) as a consequence of this difficulty, there are situations in which though it would seem unrealistic for a unit to know its opponent is nearby, they nonetheless do.

For example: A UC Spectre Operative runs near a unit of Republic Grenadiers, detecting them off of his high Reaction value. He fires and kills one, and remains hidden. In the next turn, the Grenadiers detect the Spectre Operative and kill him. A few other activations for other units pass. Subsequently, we return to this part of the table: a unit of UC Marines that was behind a building 12" away from the site of the Grenadier-Spectre combat now emerges around the corner and gets the drop on the Grenadiers, winning the reaction roll because the Grenadiers remain unhidden.

From our perspective, it didn't really make sense for the UC Marines to be able to get a reaction advantage in that case, unless units are in constant commlink communication at all times and the Spectre operative had reported the location of the Grenadiers before he died. Even then, combat is imprecise, and it would seem strange to assume that the UC Marines would immediately know where to shoot once rounding the corner.

5. Detection (part 2). We feel that the detection system adds a level of realism to the game, and enjoy it a lot. That being said, it also presents a bit of an incongruency, because the players *can* see all the units and can prompt them to run towards units that they likely would have no reason to try and detect.

For example: In the assassination scenario we played, I had four Stim Hounds hiding behind a factory. Madison Yoshida and a Pulsemech flew up next to the side of the factory - just around the corner from my hounds (and within 8"), but not in LoS. I eagerly took my detection test, and failed it for two turns in a row. The second time, I realized that I could have just arbitrarily manoeuvred my hounds towards Madison, and then detected her automatically. That being said, it seemed antithetical to the spirit of the game, because why would my hounds, having patiently waited behind the factory for the entire game, suddenly decide to mosey on over around the corner?

Any thoughts on how to address these situations? Any places where we are misapplying the rules, or could successfully apply some good house rules?

Looking forward to future discussions!

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2017/03/29 03:26:19


   
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 vlb9 wrote:
Hey all! Fifty kindly directed me to this thread, and it's great to see all these comments about Afterlife! Fifty, I love the Peach Trees terrain that you used in that one scenario, that is incredibly cool.

I got into Afterlife last month after using a few of Anvil's "Regiments" squads for FUBAR. One purchase led to another...and before I knew it, I ended up with the entire range of figures! What a fun game, and a highly compelling backstory. I love painting the miniatures, too, which are posted on my DakkaDakka page here.

My friend and I have run through a few different scenarios: assassinations, raids, and straight up "kill the other side" battles. The rules and story are highly flexible and allow for fast gameplay, which we enjoy. The folks at the other table will be unloading their 400 Tyrannids and enormous Titans for turn 1 of 40k, and we'll have finished up a highly satisfying, highly tactical game.

Sorry for slow reply. End of term, rugby tournament a putting up garden fences delayed me. I agree about how good it is to have practically played a game in the same time some people are deploying!

Comments/questions about the rules:

1. Arbitorian's comments about cover really ring true for me. We find that cover rarely results in saves, and have since chalked this issue up to the fast-paced nature of the game. Mentally, though, it would be satisfying to see units be a bit hardier, because non-hero units really can get wiped out FAST. I'm not sure if my heart can take watching an entire unit of 6 Unity Guard get wiped out again.

Hah, I like seeing units get wiped out all at once.

How would you feel about the other idea? Multiple cover saves adding together from zero upwards, then trying to roll under the total to save, kinda like nerve checks?

2. Similarly, Arbitorian's comments about suppression also ring true for me. We've really only ever had 1 or 2 instances of a unit being suppressed, and are considering a house rule to increase the -1 modifier to however many wounds the unit suffered, right off the bat. So, for example, a unit that takes two wounds would have a -2 for the suppression test even for its first suppression roll.

I know this is an area Joel is looking at very closely, so when there is playtesting to be done, I'll remind him that you might like to help. Personally though, I've had several games where I've been completely hamstrung by failed suppression checks, so they can certainly be a factor. Don't forget some weapons, such as sniper weapons, make nerve checks harder.

3. Reaction attacks: My buddy and I have struggled a bit with the reaction system, particularly in the cases of hidden units attacking detected ones. It felt a little strange/anti-climactic for a hidden unit to jump out at a visible unit and then get shot up in a preemptive reaction before it's finally able to deliver its surprise attack. So, we made a house rule that hidden units ALWAYS attack first against non-hidden units, regardless of reaction values. What do you guys think about this rule? Are we misinterpreting anything in the rulebook that could simplify it?

Well, some squads would be better at jumping out than others. However, this is an idea that Joel has a very well-formed idea that he wants to test out that will be a quite different system. I ought to not blab about it here though. It is definitely a more elegant solution, but the risk is that it [/i]might[/i] slow down the pace of the game. Again, I'll remind Joel you exist for potential playtesting.

4. Detection: The two concerns we had about detection in the game are that (1) It seems a bit tough for units to go *back* to being hidden, particularly on smaller boards; and (2) as a consequence of this difficulty, there are situations in which though it would seem unrealistic for a unit to know its opponent is nearby, they nonetheless do.

Agreed.

For example: A UC Spectre Operative runs near a unit of Republic Grenadiers, detecting them off of his high Reaction value. He fires and kills one, and remains hidden. In the next turn, the Grenadiers detect the Spectre Operative and kill him. A few other activations for other units pass. Subsequently, we return to this part of the table: a unit of UC Marines that was behind a building 12" away from the site of the Grenadier-Spectre combat now emerges around the corner and gets the drop on the Grenadiers, winning the reaction roll because the Grenadiers remain unhidden.

From our perspective, it didn't really make sense for the UC Marines to be able to get a reaction advantage in that case, unless units are in constant commlink communication at all times and the Spectre operative had reported the location of the Grenadiers before he died. Even then, combat is imprecise, and it would seem strange to assume that the UC Marines would immediately know where to shoot once rounding the corner.

Well, I generally assume that units are in constant contact. The Fog of War rules are my favourite part of the game, but there needs to be a certain level of abstraction. Keeping track of which individual units have detected which other individual units would be too cumbersome. Having said that, re-hiding slightly easier might make up for your concerns.

5. Detection (part 2). We feel that the detection system adds a level of realism to the game, and enjoy it a lot. That being said, it also presents a bit of an incongruency, because the players *can* see all the units and can prompt them to run towards units that they likely would have no reason to try and detect.

For example: In the assassination scenario we played, I had four Stim Hounds hiding behind a factory. Madison Yoshida and a Pulsemech flew up next to the side of the factory - just around the corner from my hounds (and within 8"), but not in LoS. I eagerly took my detection test, and failed it for two turns in a row. The second time, I realized that I could have just arbitrarily manoeuvred my hounds towards Madison, and then detected her automatically. That being said, it seemed antithetical to the spirit of the game, because why would my hounds, having patiently waited behind the factory for the entire game, suddenly decide to mosey on over around the corner?

One thing to remember here is that the game is generally set in an environment where other non-hostiles will be present. In a city, you know someone is there, but not who. Same in a research base, there will be admin staff and junior scientists/technicians, and so on. This explains what you are worried about somewhat.

You have given me an idea for a scenarion with "blips" similar to Space Hulk, which is in turn inspired by Aliens but I am not sure it will be practical every game.

Any thoughts on how to address these situations? Any places where we are misapplying the rules, or could successfully apply some good house rules?

Looking forward to future discussions!


Basically, this is 1st edition, and Joel already has many ideas for 2nd edition, some of which will prove good in playtesting, some which will not. I know Joel is frantically getting ready for Salute at the end of the month, then I expect he'll have more time for rules again.

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Florida, United States

Fifty, your detailed response is much appreciated. I'll try that cover rule. Incidentally, I tried another battle and found that suppression went up a bit once I made sure to strictly do nerve checks after each attack *and* re-action. Suppression clearly is more of a factor when you have multiple units in one open space, which is probably intended!

Agreed on the detection issues mentioned - I think if it was easy to go back to undetected status (say, if there are no enemy units within LoS or within a 6 or 8 inch radius), it'd be largely solved. There were always be somewhat of an incongruency/abstraction with detection, but it is a nice condition to have in the game.

Absolutely let Joel know that he has a play-tester here in the U.S. I'll be unavailable for gaming for the next few months (off to go become a soldier myself!), but I'm not going anywhere in the long haul, haha.

   
 
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