The Wild Bunch Meets Probability Management

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Lord Inar
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#21 Postby Lord Inar » Thu Feb 26, 2009 1:15 pm

VonDan wrote:Add at least one Soldita with derringers in her garter


...and drawing the weapon allows for a free Smarts trick!

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#22 Postby The Angle » Thu Feb 26, 2009 1:59 pm

One thing you might consider is that based on what I've managed to google, the rifles the Mexicans would likely be using held 5 rounds and probably would take more than a turn to reload.

Good suggestion. That's a better rationale for limiting the number who can fire each turn than "they're not very good at this."

Add at least one Soldita with derringers in her garter

In fact, a deceptive senorita plays a momentary but crucial role in the fight. Not sure how to handle that, as in a miniatures skirmish, anything out of the ordinary draws suspicion. A player isn't likely to hesitate over "killing" a woman when that woman is only a bit of painted lead.

Steve
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#23 Postby VonDan » Thu Feb 26, 2009 4:13 pm

jamused wrote:One thing you might consider is that based on what I've managed to google, the rifles the Mexicans would likely be using held 5 rounds and probably would take more than a turn to reload.


Yeah any weapon that was bought in mass for the Mexican army would be some ones military surplus at least 20 to 30 years old and I don't think they had the best service or training to keep them in top shape.

for example the Mexican troops in the Texas War and the battle of the Alamo (1836) were equipped with surplus British firearms which, tradition holds, had been used at Waterloo (1815) and of a pattern going back to 1776.

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#24 Postby Lysander » Thu Feb 26, 2009 8:13 pm

Since you're dishing out cards to all the mexican 'mooks', perhaps only those that get a spade can fire, and those that get a club have to reload? Diamond and Heart can move to get a better position and hope the get a Spade (and soon...) or try some tricks or intimidation...

Using this system kinda reminds me of the beginning of the movie 'Enemy at the Gates' where the 'recruits' were either given a gun w/ a clip, or just a clip, and if you got just a clip, you had to wait until someone with a gun got knocked off and then get the gun and hope you fared better...
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#25 Postby Sadric » Fri Feb 27, 2009 3:52 am

Or you say that in the confussion in the first round only actiondard heart could fire. The rest have to draw weapons, reload weapons, doesnt aware what happened etc. The second round all red actioncard could fire
third round, all actioncards escept spade could fire.
fourth round all could fire.

This means that your bunch will survive the first two rounds without much problems and could reduce the enemy. But then they get gunned down, as in the movie. :-)

BTW-in the movie the deadly shoots comes mostly from aiming mens from the roof. Maybe the old and heavy mexican rifles has some Snapshot penalty-if you dont aim a round you have -2 on shooting.

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#26 Postby Tuesday » Mon Mar 02, 2009 2:18 pm

Lysander: That's the battle of Stalingrad, and yes, that really happened. And yes, they did set up MGs behind the lines so that "defeatists" who stopped advancing could be gunned down by their own officers.

And if you think that's bad, you should see what *both* sides in WWI did to "deserters".

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#27 Postby algorond » Tue Mar 03, 2009 8:26 am

Tuesday wrote:Lysander: That's the battle of Stalingrad, and yes, that really happened. And yes, they did set up MGs behind the lines so that "defeatists" who stopped advancing could be gunned down by their own officers.

And if you think that's bad, you should see what *both* sides in WWI did to "deserters".


Do not want to start a flame war here, but this particular movie is hrm... untrue to the facts :)
We can discuss it, but I doubt that this is correct thread to do it.
Best Regards, Dmitry

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#28 Postby Lysander » Tue Mar 03, 2009 10:55 pm

I am aware of the general bits and pieces, in that it takes place in the backdrop of the Battle of Stalingrad and the hero/sniper was a real person. Other than that, I enjoyed it for what is was on a non-historical level, especially every Russian character having an English accent...

:-D
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#29 Postby algorond » Wed Mar 04, 2009 5:14 am

Lysander wrote:I am aware of the general bits and pieces, in that it takes place in the backdrop of the Battle of Stalingrad and the hero/sniper was a real person.


Vasily Zaitsev is a real person, but of course, the character in the movie is fictional. Even his biography was changed.
He was a sailor, serving in the Pacific fleet. During the WWII, there was no active engagements with the Japanese until 1945, when their army in China was completely crushed in two weeks. So, he wrote 5 letters to his commander asking to transfer him to active duty. Finally, he was granted a permission and with other sailors was transfered to Stalingrad area in 1942. He fought bravely and was extremely good shot. He received his sniper rifle from the commander of 1047 infantry regiment (not the mythic commissar Danilov) after shooting German soldier at the distance of 800 meters using non-scoped Mosin-Nagan rifle!
His main achievement in his own eyes, was that he was a chief trainer of the Russian snipers school established in Stalingrad. By his example he trained a lot of successful young snipers. They even called themselves "Zaichata", which means - "the little hares" ("Zaets" is "Hare" in Russian language)
Seriously wounded in the end of Stalingrad operation by mortar round he was almost blinded, but after a series of surgery operations returned to active duty and continued to fight and train young snipers. He was wounded again, and met the end of the war in the Kiev's hospital in Ukraine. He stayed there, studied in light-textile college and managed several factories in his after-war career. He died in 1991 and is buried in Volgograd (Ex-Stalingrad) at the Mamaev Kurgan war memorial.

The duel with the German sniper-ace did occur, but is mentioned only briefly in his memoirs "Notes of the Sniper". I think that it became famous after Russian director Sergey Bondarchuk who included this episode into his film "They Fought for Their Homeland" - a very good movie, watch it, if you get a chance.

As for the "War at the Gates" movie, I found it hard to sympathize to it, because the whole Stalingrad battle is shown in fictional and non-respectful way to the people who participated in it.
Human wave attacks, rear-echelon machine gunners manned by commissars and evil nkvd troops. Lack of arms and ammunition for a fresh troops, which are by the whims of the script are thrown in the battle right off the boats. It's a cold war cliche all over.

Zaitsev falling asleep and losing his party member id? That is the lethal crime, almost the same as losing the army battle banner in battle. Commissar Danilov? Did somebody mentioned to the film makers that war Commissars were disbanded in 1942? :) He is the politruk which means "Politicheskiy Rukovoditel" and has the same rank as 1st Lieutenant in army.
His reports about Zaitsev and Jewish girl? Ridiculous, to say at least. Could work is she was a German, for example. But at the times of war any such report that goes against "friendship of all soviet nations" doctrine would be dealt with. We needed to stay together, of we would fall.

Not to mention German bombers with unlimited bombs and their officers taking baths just a hundred meters from the front line :)

Other than that, I enjoyed it for what is was on a non-historical level, especially every Russian character having an English accent...


Ohh, that's the least of the movie problems in my point of view, believe me. :)

P.S. Here is picture of the real Vasily Zaitsev made at Stalingrad in 1942, you can see that he still has the navy belt with his infantry uniform:

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/c ... aitsev.jpg
Best Regards, Dmitry

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I'd not underestimate...

#30 Postby manifold » Wed Mar 04, 2009 11:38 am

I'd go ahead and make the Mexicans minions (meaning no shaken; if they're hit, they're done for.) This will a) allow them to be mown down like wheat and stay down and b) speed things way the heck up. If you have to roll to unshake everyone every time, your combat with thirty extras could go on for a loooooooong time. If they get taken out whenever you beat their toughness, you pretty much will have the bloodbath you want.

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#31 Postby The Angle » Tue Mar 24, 2009 11:10 am

The event came off without a hitch.

Image

A friend posted a bunch more photos from the game here.

After more playtesting, the solution that I arrived at was three-pronged:

1. All the Mapachistos become shaken the moment Mapache goes down, which is the very first thing to happen if the Bunch have any sense at all. That gives the outlaws a chance to really raise hell for a turn or two and get into good positions before the serious shooting starts.

2. Each Wild Bunch player started with 3 bennies. Another was awarded for 1) gunning down Mapache, 2) being the first to shoot a German advisor, 3) being the first to fire the MG, and 4) being the first to toss a grenade. Four more bennies were scattered around the hacienda and could be picked up just by moving over them, but they were in dangerous territory. Only one of those was claimed, and it nearly cost the character his life.

3. I made the Wild Bunch strong enough to survive all that incoming fire, but also brittle. The key was giving each one of them a leadership edge that affected all of them but would disappear when that character was incapacitated. For example, Dutch Engstrom's communal edge was "While Dutch is alive, all of the Wild Bunch ignore wound modifiers when rolling for Incapacitation." That's great -- for as long as Dutch survives. As soon as one of them goes down, the whole group loses that character's edge, and they start crumbling like a line of dominoes. And that's exactly what happened. They mowed down enemies like ... well, like the Wild Bunch for about 10 turns. Then Pike fell while trying to reach the crate of grenades, and within 3 turns, the whole gang was down. Which was exactly what I wanted to happen. :)

I posted their stats here. They're simplified and streamlined from pure SvgW form, since I couldn't count on players being familiar with the rules. Movement was by popsicle stick -- the length of a stick was a standard move. If you ran, you had a 50/50 chance of getting another stick but paid the MAP regardless. Mexicans had only short and medium range, so they couldn't just line up at the back wall of the hacienda and plink away. (The layout was about 33" square.) The Wild Bunch had to keep track of ammo (with empty .22 casings in paper cups), and that led to some interesting situations when they'd rush into a room to gun down figures, then suddenly find their guns empty with 8 more Mexicans pushing their way into the room.

A big thanks to everyone who offered suggestions and helped make it better and to the folk who played at Cold Wars, if any of them are reading this. If you're in the Northwest, I'll be running this again at Enfilade (Olympia, WA, May 22-24) with a few minor tweaks and improvements.

Steve
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#32 Postby Noshrok Grimskull » Tue Mar 24, 2009 11:25 am

Glad it went down as planned.
And that is some nice terrain you've got there. Almost makes me wish I'd spend more time making terrain. But I'd have to somehow get it to where we play. By bicycle. So... :wink:
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