Saturday, June 16, 2012

Simplest Terrain Ever, Simplest Skirmish Rules Ever

Things have been very quiet on the modeling front. I eased back in with some really simple terrain: some Italeri stone walls, and some homemade hedges. The hedges were particularly easy. A pack of tongue depressors, a can of green camo spray paint, white glue and some moss from a local craft store. Spray the tongue depressors camo green, then glue clumps of moss to them. Voilà.

The Italeri wall around a house. Hedges on the edges.

Close-up of the wall.

Because I couldn't just make terrain without doing something with it immediately, I made up some skirmish rules on the spot. Each guy moves 6+d6". If the d6 roll is a "1" the guy moves his 7" and then the turn passes to the other side. Moving in rough (over hedge or wall) costs a penalty of 3". Shooting – rifles and LMGs 24"; SMGs 12". Rifles hit on a 5 or 6, LMGs/SMGs on a 4,5,6. Penalty of -1 if target is in cover. A hit eliminates the target. Shots may be taken at start or end of a man's move. If the d6 roll for the shot is a "1" the turn passes to the other side. So basically any "1" rolled on the die, for movement or shooting, is a turnover. 

 Close-up of a hedge.

And another.

In my quick game, the opposing squads had ten men each. In the end, the Americans made a valiant attempt to take the building with the wall around it, but the Germans drove them off, breaking the U.S. squad. The GI's lost five men to the Wehrmacht's four.


  1. This is almost exactly the same set of skirmish rules I made up to play with my little brother. Mine was I go-you go, roll for initiative on the next combat round. I like your turn over the turn on a 1 rule better though, it makes the game much more dynamic.

  2. Nice terrain Bard. And nice simple rules too.

  3. Thanks guys!

    The rules were just for pushing plastic around of course. Nice for when I get home from work and have only one brain cell left functioning.

    I can't take 100% credit for the turn over rule. It's inspired by a concept in a set of 18th-C rules called "Lace Wars" on the free wargame rules page.

  4. This looks great! Every time I see Valiant's figures I want to rush out and buy some - great value as they are ;) Have you considered Two Hour Wargames' freebie Chain Reaction rules? Great for dynamic solo play.

  5. Hello, I like your simple rules and I am working on a slightly more expanded version... if you like the idea I published the first draft on the Pz8 Yahoogroup

    1. Wow, that's super cool, and I love the idea. I just put in a request to join the group!


Two Up, One Back

"The dominant (though not the only) tactical formation for the infantry in both attack and defense remained 'two up, one back.' This was a product of the triangular organization that the infantry used from platoon to division level. Triangular units had three main 'maneuver' elements (weapons units did not count as 'maneuver' elements). Rifle platoons had three squads; rifle companies three rifle platoons; battalions, three rifle companies; and so forth. This encouraged commanders to place two of their maneuver units forward while keeping back the third so that it could relieve or reinforce a frontline unit."

--John Sayen, U.S. Army Infantry Divisions 1944-45 (28)