I'm really liking this thread. I'm coming up on my first large scale combat that will be run with ground units, units in the atmosphere of the planet, and space combat. The 1 die per unit is a great idea.
My thought is to use either Leadership as a cool initiative check (the leader reactions to something happening quickly) or Warfare as a Vigilance initiative check (The group deploys in an advantageous way).
After getting initiative I am thinking are doing a maneuver phase 1st (I'm using maps I like maps) using reverse of initiative (so slow guys must move first). Then an action attack phase (like X-wing). Then a leadership/ reaction/ morale/ chaos phase where things happen the leaders did not plan on (like run away).
My thought with die used to represent units is to give them an offense and defense die per unit. So they roll opposed offense vs. defense rolls to see if they damaged the other unit. If you fail in an attack roll you actually take damage. The person attacking can choose to take out the offensive or defensive die of the units. Advantages and threats can be spent to use boost to future rolls, cause critical unit damage, or buy additional movement.
The total damage then becomes the difficulty for the leader to keep members from breaking ranks, breaking down, or just getting lost and ineffective in the next turn. That morale/breakdown check will remove die that are set to the side. The leader can get those die back by using advantages to rally routed units.
I'm getting very wargamey, but sometimes it is a good change of pace from narrative to get a little down and dirty.
Time to break out the excel and start making some charts.