Friday, July 3, 2020

Friday Roundup 7/3/2020

It's a Friday, so I like to link to posts or post random little tidbits. Today is no exception.

- Over at the Nine and Thirty Kingdoms, Talysman has an idea - can you expand the idea, nebulous in OD&D, that margin of success matters on a strike? And then, can you assign special, critical effects on that strike, over and above (but possibly affecting) the damage?

It's a good idea. It's not a new idea, though. That'e the core of Arms Law from Rolemaster. In Rolemaster, you roll a "to hit" roll that is modified by your attack skill and modifiers and the defensive skill and modifiers of the target. The margin is looked up on a table, which tells you the concussion hits (HP loss, basically) and what level of critical to roll. That critical can and does modifier the effects and damage on the target.

I'm not dissing Talysman here. I'm just pointing out that he's on the same logic trip - and roll approach - of another system I really liked. Margin of success modifications to results, or determination of results, has a lot to say for it as a mechanic.

- The GURPS PDF Kickstarter is still going:

DF21 is still locked, and not even displayed, as a stretch goal. I figure it's probably going to unlock at $44K or $45K based on the other jumps between unlocks.

- I'm stalled in War in the East, at least mentally at the moment. I got through the mud but now the Soviets have a solid front in front of me. I need to decide where to put my efforts to break it; I can't just chase everywhere like the heady days of July and August 1941.

I did finally take the rest of Leningrad, stabilized my front and even advanced it by crushing a few Russian salients, and otherwise made good use of the time. Now the snow is here and I'm moving East again. I might be able to take Moscow but I might not be able to keep it. I could move my armor there en masse but it'll take time and the terrain in front of Moscow is a tangle of woods and rivers - places where armor suffers lots of penalties and takes lots of casualties. It's already looking tempting to dig in so I can hold on for dear life in the winter and then transfer my mobile elements from Army Group North to Army Group South and make a big push on Stalingrad and the oil I need in the Caucasus mountains. Yeah, I know, I know. Suddenly the OKH doesn't look like a bunch of idiots doing something obviously wrong. I'll post pictures after a few more turns.

And I should say, all of this is with Panzer IIc, Panzer IIIg, Panzer IVe, and Pz-38t tanks as my primary workhorses . . . by the time you get to Tigers and Panthers and Panzer IVg tanks in any numbers, you better have won the war or you're bound to lose it.

- Dreams in the Lichhouse is revising its blogroll. The comments are full of blog suggestions. If you want to suggest one, or suggest your own, or (like me) browse for more blogs you might like, take a look.

- A rabbit hole of link-following led me back to this post:

Same Description, Same Rules

I feel that's a good rule of thumb. A related idea drives my color scheme.

Speaking of old posts of mine, here is one idea I liked but haven't really implemented. I really should use something like it - not necessarily "first time always works" as I have players that will abuse that, but perhaps "it works this time because of amazing luck and timing and coincidence" to help players get past being stuck. Don't forget to read the followup if you're considering doing the same.

- This blog has some very good advice on painting - she paints well and explains well. That's very, very valuable.


  1. "DF21 is still locked, and not even displayed, as a stretch goal."

    Yeah, it's probably the end of the list. Hopefully it manages to drive enthusiasm at the end and get funded, it's one of the three I wanted.

  2. If you want some WW2 wargame action that's less time consuming and more tactical level can I recommend the Battle Academy games. The first one is so cheap it's practically free in the steam sale at the moment.

    1. Thanks, I'll check them out. I did enjoy Close Combat, although tanks had a maddeningly stupid tendency to turn their back on the enemy. I was thinking of re-buying Combat Mission . . . I owned it a long time ago but clearly I don't have my CD of it anymore.

      I am enjoying the operational game with strategic consequences, though it does take a long time. In a straight-up wargame I might ignore a city or a hex, but suddenly it's a chance to deny resources or oil to the Soviets or a chance to cut off a rail line . . . it's just time consuming.


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