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Looking to try the game and have some questions

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Looking to try the game and have some questions Empty Looking to try the game and have some questions

Post  Popski255 on Thu Oct 17, 2019 6:57 pm

Hello all,

I purchased the rule book a map and scenario book from TFL as a few of my friends wanted to get into this game. After reviewing over the rule book I have a number of questions.

The rules state that communication between players should be delayed based on distance, does this apply to orders given to units on the field as well. When the umpire receives orders does he delay their execution until the unit would receive them?

How broad or specific are orders often given to units on the field by players? Examples would be appreciated

How much control does the player have over their forces?

In engagements between chits, are they lumped together as a group in the dice rolls as a singular entity for example if there is a line battle of 2 battalions fighting 2 battalions or or is each engagement calculated as 1 on 1 individually?

Any help would be appreciated, there are no groups around me that im aware of that play and information is hard to find. I hope to attempt a game with some local friends in the near future.

Thanks,
Andrew

Popski255

Posts : 2
Join date : 2019-10-17

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Looking to try the game and have some questions Empty Re: Looking to try the game and have some questions

Post  Martin on Wed Oct 23, 2019 12:05 pm

Hi Andrew

And welcome to the k/spiel world.  Sorry for delayed response, but here are some thoughts...........

The rules state that communication between players should be delayed based on distance, does this apply to orders given to units on the field as well. When the umpire receives orders does he delay their execution until the unit would receive them?

Yes, absolutely!

How broad or specific are orders often given to units on the field by players? Examples would be appreciated

This depends on the scale of the game.  In general, the smaller the forces, the more detailed the orders should be.  It also depends on whether the troops being ordered are with and directly under the control of the player.  These should receive more detailed and specific orders, than troops under the command of a subordinate commander (whether human or NPC controlled).

Here are examples assuming you are playing a traditional 'detachments' game, with players typically commanding a small all-arms force.......say of a few battalions, a few squadrons and a battery of guns:

1. For troops under your direct command, you might order a battalion to occupy a wood, or 2 battalions to storm a village, in assault column.  Some of this can be dealt with in different ways.  For example, if deployment of skirmishers is appropriate, I would not expect players to specify that, on the basis it's SOP.  Other umpires might take a different view however.  If you order a cavalry advance, the player should specify how many squadrons are involved, and how many are in each line.

2. For detached troops the orders should be higher-level, and focus on their mission objective.  Let us say you order a small force of 2 jaeger battalions and 2 squadrons of hussars to move smartly ahead of your main body, and secure a bridge 4 miles ahead.  Your orders should specify the route, the objective, and how aggressively you wish the commander to act in securing the objective.  These orders will then guide a human player (or the umpires if the force is NPC) in interpreting the order if the unexpected occurs - eg meeting opposition.

How much control does the player have over their forces?

In theory a great deal, as they are in charge and give whatever orders they wish.  In practice however, the friction of war gets in the way..........a feature k/spiels model exceptionally well.  Delays in your orders reaching the troops, communication lags between yourself and fellow commanders, risk of message interception, lack of knowledge over the enemy strength, deployment and objectives all combine to frustrate the best-laid plans.

In engagements between chits, are they lumped together as a group in the dice rolls as a singular entity for example if there is a line battle of 2 battalions fighting 2 battalions or or is each engagement calculated as 1 on 1 individually?

In the example you have given, the engagement would be resolved as a whole.  However if say one defending battalion was in a village, and the other in the open, different factors apply and they should therefore be resolved separately.

Hope that helps!

Martin J

Martin

Posts : 2333
Join date : 2008-12-20
Location : London

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Looking to try the game and have some questions Empty Re: Looking to try the game and have some questions

Post  Popski255 on Thu Oct 24, 2019 4:31 am

Thank you for the help, I appreciate the aid in a game of such complexity.


thanks,
Andrew

Popski255

Posts : 2
Join date : 2019-10-17

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Looking to try the game and have some questions Empty Re: Looking to try the game and have some questions

Post  James Sterrett on Sat Nov 02, 2019 12:25 am

A broader reply than Martin's --

In Kriegsspiel, you're trying to put the players in a position where they face three problems:

1) They do not have enough time [and this is the hardest to enforce, as the umpires!]

2) They do not have enough information [the fog of war!]

3) All their orders must be understood and executed by another person.

Those three elements combine to make the magic of Kriegsspiel; everything else is icing on the cake.  (Sometimes very good icing!)

In order to make the time pressure happen, I run the umpire table for speed, and try to get plausible/explainable combat results fast as opposed to perfect results slowly.  I also am in the habit of having a pit boss in the player's room who kicks the reporting umpires back out!

The other two rarely have problems we have to correct for.  Smile

If I had to sacrifice any of these - the last one to go would be the third.  Plenty of computer games have the first two issues down pat and yet don't feel remotely like Kriegsspiel.  It's the need to explain your intent to somebody else that really drives Kriegsspiel to be a means of practicing the skill of thinking through and writing orders, especially good mission command orders. The lack of time and information really help with that! Nonetheless, if for some reason I *had to* jettison all but one element, I'd keep the orders.

James Sterrett

Posts : 74
Join date : 2009-01-05

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