Lasalle > Lasalle Rules Questions

First thoughts after a few games

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J.S.:
So first of all, I really like the rules for their smoothness and simplicity, definitely well thought out stuff here. But after a few games we found some things missing...maybe we also overlooked something or misinterpreted some concepts, i don't kow. Anyways, here are my thoughts on it:

-One point concerns firing: a volley/canistershot fired at maximum range hurts as much as one fired at point blank range. Therefore, a "close range" category would have been nice (1 BW and below, let's say 1 D6 more); firing as a reaction is always counted as being in "close range", assuming that the defenders keep their nerves and wait until the very last moment to unleash their volley. One could also include a discipline test here..maybe the defenders did not keep calm and just started firing like crazy as soon as they saw the enemy-> no additional close range D6 for these guys.
And is there any "first volley" rule? After the first few volleys a battlefield quickly filled with smoke, making the aiming of the already inaccurate muskets even harder..unfortunatelly this is not represented in Lasalle (?)
 A "first volley" rule, granting an additonal D6, could work nicely together with a "close range" rule. Will Commander Sepp waste his precious first shot in attack column formation over 4 BWS or wait until his foces close in/ are in a formation which is better suited for firing?

-Morale: My units don't seem to care much for what is going on around them on the field.
Example: Austrian Commander Sepp starts an ill-advised attack on a well-entrenched french position with 3 infantry units. Badly mauled by artillery fire und musket volleys, they finally reach the french lines..somehow.. but 2 of them break immediately after close combat. And the third? Well, it just keeps standing there and waits for the next turn.
If the Disr.Points are to represent morale, causulties, fatigue and so on.. why not adding a morale test if a unit has to observe the rout of friendly units nearby (say within 4 BWs). If the unit passes the discipline test..well, tough guys -> no additional Disruption Point

-Generally, I d' like to have seen more discipline test..one game felt more like StarCraft:Broodwar than a Naps game for all the micromanagment going on.
Men are mown down by canister, volleys rage though the lines, blood smoke terror..charges face countercharges, the whole scene concealed in thick white fog.. and what does the Austrian Commander Sepp? Well, he tells one of his badly mangled units to move 2,3 metres to the left and then turn 13,3 degress, so that in the next turn they'd be able to face the incoming Frenchies better.
If a unit is near the breaking point (5 out of 6 Disr. for example) then it should be harder to give them even the simplest orders, especially when near the enemy (4 BWS..I really like this concept). It's perfectly ok that they can't change formation so easily in such a condition, but for my taste the rules could have gone much farther. According to the rules a Landwehr unit on the brink of destruction fires with the same efficency as fresh line infantry and so on.. a simple discipline test here would not have dramatically complicated the rules I guess.

Well,for much from my side  ;)

doomben:
For me Lasalle's biggest attraction is it is fast with simple elegant processes.  You can play with a game with 2 dozen units a side in only about 3 hours without looking at any rules.  Few rules let you do that.

Certainly you could add more steps to the game.  But the risk is that the game slows and you end up with the usual game where games bog down.

Having said that, Lasalle is fairly easy to tinker with.

If you want some form of close range shooting benefit with an extra dice and/or you want to remember a unit's first volley and give them a dice if they pass a test, it would probably work.  A local group for instance gives British an extra shooting dice for being, well British, and that does not seem to cause problems.

On morale, I presume the idea that your force can lose 1/3rd before breaking represents the impact of losses on other units.  Again if you want add tests for seeing other units break I doubt it would affect gameplay much.  You could also just add a DISR if a friend breaks nearby - one group give a DISR to any unit that takes a voluntary fall back, and the world did not collapse.

Making movement harder by adding tests is again an easy change, but I suspect more risky.  With shooting only directly ahead units can get in the enemy's blind spot which I doubt in reality would be so easy.  If you restrict infantry from making small angle changes (or artillery making their small prolong move to wheel), you might get some odd situations and get less shooting.

Personally I would not want to make in of the changes you suggest in our games - not because they are wrong, but just because they would slow the game.  I have played too many Napoleonic games where I have endless charts and tests - and don't want another one.  But everyone is different - so go for it.

Cam

J.S.:
Well, first of all thanks for your feedback! I totally agree on the point that Lasalle is meant to be a fast game..that's excactly the reason why I like it so much.
Maybe I should have added that so far we've only played with quite small forces (the basic forces from the army lists, no extra brigades) so games were quite quick anyways. Of course, if you double the size of the forces involved, you'll be happy that you do not have to memorize which unit already shot and which didn't..no doubt about that.
Well the morale thing..again it's the size that matters. In a small game it could make the difference if all 3 attacking units of line infantry break because of moral - that's roughly half your forces. Whereas in bigger games such an extra rule only adds another time consuming factor which hardly changes anything I guess.
Anyways..we have a saying here in Germany which goes "Probieren geht über studieren"..so we're going to try it out..if we like, we like it- if not, world won't stop turning. ;)

Tomdudley:
Hey J.S
I agree with some of the points raised and the rules you propose, but like Cam theres nothing more off putting than a game with endless charts! Hence why I only played DBM once!! Don't mean to simply repeat others but the first two points you mention could be implemented easily, mainly due to the fact that quick simple rules can be incorporated into the rule set, infact Sam often promotes players house rules.

The movement point, I do agree with but I am guilty of "fiddling" to get that perfect angle :-[; and it is annoying when your sure you have opponent in a trap yet a step, shimmy, and a backward 10 degree wheel and all your hard work is gone!! Perhaps when within 4BW of an enemy you should take a DISC test to see what your troops are able to do, with modifers for DISR. This would also mean armies like the French and Brits could pull off better manoeuvres due to better sub commanders; but again this implies the dreaded chart!!

Like you say try it out, please share your results  :D
Tom
Tom

cortn:
Just write up those bad boys as optional rules and post them! More options the better! I say.


Cort N

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