Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
venkelos

Style of Battle?

Recommended Posts

This might be a bit more of an opinion thing, but I find myself curious, so I'll inquire. In your games of Only War, how are more of the battles staged? Is your player group but one of a massive force, battling another massive force, in a brawl that hasn't appreciably moved more than a few feet in years, or a small team insertion? I ask because of transport vehicles. Some groups get to start with a Chimera, and others might be able to requisition one, anyway, while some might be dropped in by Valkyrie, but what do they do with it, and how do they leave? If you can find a place to hide a Chimera, what do you do to stow it away, and what stops a hulking Ork from busting in and taking it? Or a DE from blowing it up? Nothing says they won't be captured, or end up on a distant spot, unable to return to the vehicle. How does this element often work in your games?

 

I'm obviously not real-life military, so I don't have legit experience in hiding stuff like that. I've seen stuff where real Howitzer emplacements are fortified, and covered in tents and brush, but they don't hide for long. I don't know if it's more NPCs drop you off, and agree to try and get back to you at a predetermined time, or if the vehicle can hod some extras, so a few are left to tend to it. How planned this is. Sure, in the average "hop out, fire, kill, and back in", you don't have to worry, but some missions can't be that way. As an aside, I have played plenty of D&D, and so I have a great deal of experience getting to a dungeon, having to leave the horses behind, and never getting back to them, again (reason #5 I don't and won't play a Pallie). I'd see a Chimera as a significantly costlier loss, but am unsure how to safeguard it, and make sure you get to get back to it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well a regiment which has been given a Chimera would most proberly be a mechanical Infanty regiment; and in most cases would be stationed behind the frount line of a stagnent war so that they can quickly moberlize to different parts of the battle. the base they would be stationed at would be pretty safe.

If they were'nt stationed in a base; instead being a fully mobile force then at night they wouldbe formed up in a harbour formation to create a defensive perimenter; again pretty safe.

If the party is out on a mission and its only their chimera then the squad would be split; leaving the crew in the veichle for its safe keeping and so it can provide fire support. There is no real reason why the party should be far from the chimera; mech squads are fairly light on when out of the chimera and use it as a bunker; a portable armory and of course transport.

 

If for whatever reason your GM (or you if your GM) says that the chimera is too big to continue; call bull. The imperium is well know for it larger then life hallways; chambers and buildings; if its not large enough then its proberly a temperary structure which can be driven through; or there is a way around (possibly after a short walk from the squad to a door control)

 

In terms of how I run battles in Only War; focus on the squad, the game is about them and so the combat should be about them. that being said; gigantic battles are a main trope of 40k but have them as semi scripted events; dont leave it up to some dice roll mechanic and defently dont run a ton of NPCs it drags combat and takes the spotlight off the characters. remember that the PCs arnt space marines and a semi compedent squad of enemy NPCs can cause troubles; If the PCs are killing the squad or 2 easily give the NPCs support; a chimera is a fearsome opponent especially if you dont have one.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If for whatever reason your GM (or you if your GM) says that the chimera is too big to continue; call bull.

 

Everything you listed only matters in a city fight, and even then huge rubble piles from massive sky scrapers falling will block a chimera. And if they are in the wilderness and have to repel down (or climb up) a cliff for a strike mission that only a mobile squad could reach in time, like destroying a bridge before the enemy crosses, and you have two day, and its three days march, but a chimera could get there in half that time, but the last two hour is a climb up a shear face and you're behind enemy lines, or something. That's off the top of my head and its a reason you'd have to leave the chimera behind.

 

To the topic at hand. I either have the squad take a test to conceal it if they have to leave the chimera behind, and if they pass then it is concealed well enough to not be find, if they fail then it might get spotted, may not. Or I have some NPC's who stay with it to protect it or run if it get attacked, or to come back with it for the rest of the squad at an appointed time. And even in massive pitched battles I focus on the squad and their hard point, fighting off red shirts and maybe a commander in relatively small waves at a time with a few minutes between each attack. And I do a lot of search-and-destroy missions or scout missions, and the like, they are fun and easy.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One thing your squad absolutely needs- a vox-caster. Many, if not all, vehicles would have one, but a squad should as well, even if as a back up

Chimeras would ideally be nearby because they're usually attached to your squad. Chimeras could also have camo nets for field concealment, or in an urban setting, you'd hope to find a defensible building to rest in. This also would apply to tank, sentinel, and mobile artillery units. Any vehicle like this is going to have room for extra supplies/kit.

Squads that arrive by Valkyrie or Vendetta (either by grav-chute or landed in) are going to be traveling light. The aircraft likely will have other operations or refuel/refit after deploying your squad, which makes a vox-caster much more important, as well as a signaling device (signal flares, colored smoke grenades, etc). The only vehicles that are air transportable in the IG so far by Valkyrie are Sentinels and Tauros scout cars, which would give your squad a little more gear to carry. But your time in an operation is limited by the supplies you carry, and what can be delivered to you in the field, which can make things -very- difficult if you can't get them for any reason. Either more supplies are brought in by air, or ground units are able to fight their way to you, for example. If they need to leave, it's the same- either a ship picks them up at an arranged place and time, or ground forces are able to reach them. Valkyries and Vendettas may be able to offer air support for the unit they deployed, depending on their own mission parameters. Perhaps tyou're not the only squad needing a lift, but there aren't enough air transports/gunships in service there.

Rough Riders can carry a few more supplies on their mounts. If they use animals, they might be able to forage and stay out longer, or in emergencies eat their mounts. If you manage to make a bike for a rough rider unit, they need fuel and maintenance. Animal units are also able to travel some types of terrain better than vehicles, species and terrain depending.

What stops (hopefully) an Ork tank busta or DE from attacking while you rest is having a rotating watch schedule. If you're separated from your vehicle, or it gets taken/looted/destroyed, I hope you kept that vox-caster close.

While the Imperium does have HUGE hallways in some buildings (such as there being tank battles on Armageddon inside the tank factories themselves), there might be times when, logically, your vehicle might be too big or too dangerous to take- collapsed passages, vehicle traps/mines, anti-vehicle specialists ahead, etc.- or it might have been damaged or destroyed. Or maybe your vehicle makes too much noise and you need to move quietly. Every Guardsman, from lowly cook to the Warmaster himself, is a rifleman, and expected to be capable of operating as line infantry if needed, or if they lose their vehicles. Losing your vehicle doesn't have to be a game-killer, and it doesn't have to make your mission impossible, either.

Vehicles and mounts in any campaign can be both a blessing or a curse depending on what your enemy has- while boots on the ground are obviously going to be easier targets and slower moving, you might have a better chance to get to cover. Your Chimera, Hellhound, or Leman Russ is less attractive when it's on fire and your ammunition or fuel stores explode while you're inside, y'know? Also keep in mind a couple of the pre-written campaigns have, for example, Orks having air defense superiority, which means not only will any Imperial aircraft be at high risk of being damaged or shot down both from the ground and by Ork air forces, but there will likely be more Ork Bommas or Dakkajets in the air ready to attack your squad or vehicle randomly.

Edited by Graey

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Every Guardsman, from lowly cook to the Warmaster himself, is a rifleman, and expected to be capable of operating as line infantry if needed, or if they lose their vehicles. Losing your vehicle doesn't have to be a game-killer, and it doesn't have to make your mission impossible, either.

 

That's the Bundeswehr and not the Imperial Guard. In the IG ,you can have a officer who have never touched a lasgun in his entire life. 

 

Also, Vox Casters are not so essential as long-range radios in a modern IRL army. Even if you can contact your HQ, they won't rush to help you because who cares about those 5-6 guys when they have a war to worry about.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's actually a lot of militaries, sir. Even if the officers don't carry the main service rifle, they need to have at least basic instruction and familiarization, especially for inspecting their subordinates and their gear alongside the Commissar. Now, afterwards, they may not have a need or desire to carry it, but they need to know how to use it. Using another real world example, every US Marine, from the new private to the Commandant of the Corps, has to pass an annual rifle qualification, no exceptions. The Commandant doesn't need a rifle more than for the qualifications, but it gets issued to him, and he needs to know how to use it.

Vox-casters won't guarantee a pick up in a tight spot, no, but HQ will want reports of your activity in the field (which can be done in narrative time), even if it's a small unit, so there's that, too. Command might also need to issue or amend orders to the squad, and they're not running the pony express to tell you if you're way out there. Or quite simply, you might need to report something of vital importance immediately. Communications are always important, because squads are the eyes, ears, and hands of the command structure.

Now, does anyone have to take my advice? No. Have I been enlisted? Yes. I also take my suggestions out of IG fluff, including the codices, and the IIUP and Munitorum manuals Black Library made

Edited by Graey

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Believe me, as someone who served alongside at least a dozen different armies (including the USMC), I only wish that this was the truth  :rolleyes:

 

Well, when we'll live in an ideal world - it will be true. ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think the whole 'every soldier a rifleman' is just so much US Marine Corps bs. It certainly isn't practised in other (European) armies. Sure, every officer goes through OCS but even as company officers they are not expected to use their weapons unless in an emergency. Even inspections are more based on appearance of the weapon (clean etc.) than actual performance. That is handled by the NCO's.

 

And by the time they are field officers, they are too old, too fat and too far removed from battle to use rifles...In fact, it would be a misuse of resources to have senior officers on the firing line instead of directing the battle. That's actually the reasoning behind the issue of SMG's to junior officers and NCO's while the common soldiers had rifles; the typical engagement would be at a range beyond the SMG so the officer/nco would be forced to focus on directing it instead of shooting along with his men!

 

Things may be different with special forces but even there the officers in actual combat would be just company officers, not high ranking ones.

 

As to vehicles, APC have their own dedicated drivers & gunners/commanders. They generally stay with the vehicle when the armoured infantry squad is dismounted and provide covering fire if possible. So just assign NPC's and use it as a battle taxi for most missions. 

 

Vox connection etc. is highly overrated in an average squad mission. Unless you are performing some commando mission with satellite uplink to link you to senior HQ's, squads are just on their company network. They can talk to their company HQ and maybe, just maybe to the battalion HQ but that's it. Militaries have very strict communication protocols to prevent every tom, **** and harry from sending messages and overloading the system, either with volume or non-essential data. Higher HQ's expect to get filtered info from their lower HQ's. They don't want to hear from squad 32819. Hell, when radio communications where first used in vehicles, only the platoon commander's vehicle would have a two-way radio (to his platoon vehicles and to the company commander). The platoon vehicles only had a receiver. Communications discipline is a very big issue in the military!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It might bear saying that most armies you said, or might be thinking, are living in "relative" peace. Israel and Palestine, certain other Middle East forces, and such might fight a lot, but the Imperium ONLY fights, and they fight things that mean to utterly annihilate them. In this case, a man who can't use a gun is dead weight, and there are only so many Proteus Command bunkers to bury yourself in. Even Creed occasionally sees battle, and has his pistols ready for such. They also have more diehard religious obligations enforced on them. If the Commander isn't battle-ready, his Commissar might see that as wanting, and shoot him. Of course, it depends on who's writing that day.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...