1) I will try the new turn sequence. As it stands the initiative roll can make a huge difference in the ebb and flow of the game independent of tactics.
- Where does human prey figure in the movement sequence?
- Should a controller tripod and its associated drones count as one unit?
- Reinforcements roll for arrival prior to initiative?
2) I agree with the spirit of the terrain effects of low, obscuring, and blocking with a dash of What You See Is What You Get approach. For example, my scientist tripod can be blocked by view with some of my paper terrain buildings where an assault tripod is just obscured.
2) I believe the initiative bonus has always been +1 for downing a tripod. But if it has armor 11 or better, no damage at start of turn, and is destroyed that same turn earns an additional +1 (so an assault tripod destroyed in the course of one game turn is +2 initiative bonus)
I have the same objection I have with every system of alternating units: the side with more units gets a free pass once his/her opponent has exhausted their force.
I would prefer something like this
Player A designates Support by Fire units and Manuvuering units. SBF fire at designated targets or maintain watch along an avenue of fire Moving units then move Player B fires all units with a valid target AND/OR moves units Player A's moved units now fire and any SBF units that did not fire previously, but now have a valid target (Player B's units that withdrew or repositioned) Player A's moving units second move, SBF units that have not fired move. Player B fires on any targets with units that did not fire or move previously.
The use of alternating movement is to maintain the initiative concept without making it a game breaker. I agree that a force (human most likely) with many units will have an advantage but in this one game didn't see it make a difference.
I actually like the current turn setup as it gives a nice flow to the game. You could always give a bonus to intiative rolls for poor command/morale or anything else you can think up for a change without major overhaul. A second idea is opportunity fire, but that always seemed to me to slow things down and you'd have to use a Fired marker to track if you wanted only 1 shot per turn (fire phase). Otherwise you get in affect 2 shots per turn (1 opportunity & 1 firephase).
I've played alot of Sword & Flame colonial rules, which uses a card draw (red Brits black Native). It seems to cause spurts of activity and can be most entertaining as you never are too sure when you're going to be able to move. AUW and Faticide use a form of a draw system with alternating units as well. A single deck of cards (mini ones if you can find them) from Bicycle should give you an easy way of alternating unit movement - Red for Martians, Black for Humans, and remove the Jokers OR use them to indicate when to resuffle the deck. So, does this work?? I think the initiative roll was a good idea, especially rewarding success or used as a scenario tool (USA have +1 Initiative rolls for this battle). I'd kinda like to see it kept. At present I support the alternating units by initiative per the scenario graphically done by mikesdski in his battle report. It seemed to keep the essence of the original rule without going too far from the basics and could easily be used with initiative boosters and successes. A mix is also possible for those scenarios where one side 'has initiative' for a fixed number of turns automatically - simply use the original rules for "USA has first turn initiative" situations, then convert to the alternative move systems thereafter ("turn 2+" for the example).
Good thoughts. Appreciate the feedback. I have played both the card/chit draw activation and alternating side activation methods with several different rule sets. My experience is that the card draw system upset some people because of the small but statistically possible event of one side getting to activate every unit in their force before the other gets even one activation. Actually I think most of the people complaining about that tended towards a tournament mindset. Players who were more into the concept of the chaos of battle were less bothered.
My experience with the alternating activation system has mostly been with skirmish games (especially StarGrunt II, which although out of print I still really like). My initial concern with using it for All Quiet was with the fact that the humans usually have quite a few more units than the Martians. But it sounds like it is working pretty well for those of you who have tried it. I hope to hear more about experiments in this area.