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Overwatch debate

 Post subject: Overwatch debate
PostPosted: Sat Dec 29, 2012 10:29 pm 
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This is a matter of debate here...

Does overwatch trigger only at the end of a move? Or does any movement past the overwatching formation trigger the overwatch shot(s)?

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 Post subject: Re: Overwatch debate
PostPosted: Sat Dec 29, 2012 11:52 pm 
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End of a move (emphasis mine)

Quote:
1.10 Overwatch

A formation that is on overwatch may choose to shoot immediately after an enemy formation completes a move or unloads troops, and before the target either shoots or assaults.

Note that a formation on overwatch is allowed to shoot at an enemy formation after any move, so it may shoot at a formation making several moves after it has completed one of these moves and before it carries out the next one. This stops fast formations using double or march actions to ‘whiz past’ a formation that is on overwatch.


That being said it's not uncommon round these parts to see a house rule the way opportunity fire worked in classic Avalon hill games based on Panzer Blitz ruleset. Think Overwatch but only able to trigger after a percentage of movement (usually 2/3) actually in the open and in range of the OW formation. At any point along the movement path at or after the 2/3 point the fire action may take place as an interrupt. The normal ability to fire before engage and dismount from vehicles per RAW. I think this is somewhat a style of play you're alluding to in the OP if I am not mistaken (it's happened before :D )

I'm rather torn on the above as I was pretty much a huge fan of the AV games and felt the rulesets were very true to life and I like the emphasis that cover plays in the game with it. However I feel that there's an elegance in the RAW and the abstraction level of movement and activations hold. I feel it fits better in smaller aquad tactics games vs the company level epic has.

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 Post subject: Re: Overwatch debate
PostPosted: Mon Mar 11, 2013 12:48 pm 
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We actually discussed this last year where a land speeder formation doubled past a host of dark reapers on OW. The DR was placed between two buildings, limiting their fire arc and since the LS completed their move outside the DR point of view, the space marine commander claimed no OW could be used. Which I think is BS and totally unrealistic, but completely within the rules.


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 Post subject: Re: Overwatch debate
PostPosted: Mon Mar 11, 2013 1:09 pm 
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The rules say it's at the end of discrete moves.

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 Post subject: Re: Overwatch debate
PostPosted: Mon Mar 11, 2013 1:17 pm 
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Therefore if you were marching (3 moves) OW could be fired at the formation when it finished moves 1, 2, or 3. Thus allowing fast moving targets like Landspeeders etc to zoom between cover; quite a nice touch i think.

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 Post subject: Re: Overwatch debate
PostPosted: Mon Mar 11, 2013 1:24 pm 
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Still you have the finest heavy troopers the Eldar can muster ready to blast anything out of the skies, just watching the enemy zip past a fire lane of 20-25cm. He finished his first move just before entering the fire lane.

I learned the OW rule when playing RT 40k and Space Marine. Just have to come to terms with them being different in EA, I guess, and how to postion my OW trops better.


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 Post subject: Re: Overwatch debate
PostPosted: Mon Mar 11, 2013 1:45 pm 
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Oberst Lynild wrote:
Still you have the finest heavy troopers the Eldar can muster ready to blast anything out of the skies, just watching the enemy zip past a fire lane of 20-25cm. He finished his first move just before entering the fire lane.


I get what you mean, but the alternative solution would bring a lot of arguments with it. "I moved here" vs "No! You moved there" kind of stuff. Pushing around your tanks saying "Putt putt putt" would have some in game meaning though. :)

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 Post subject: Re: Overwatch debate
PostPosted: Mon Mar 11, 2013 2:25 pm 
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Luckily the table wasn't too wide to give my opponent a quick slap on the cheek. Much more satysfying than to bicker over who did what to who ;D


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 Post subject: Re: Overwatch debate
PostPosted: Sat May 11, 2013 12:07 pm 
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Digging a bit in the 3th edition of Epic rulebook, I found there an interesting addition to overwatch.
In Epic 40.000 a formation (detachment) were allowed a 5 cm consolidation move along with going overwatch!

So I end up thinking what if E:A would had this rule. You order a formation Overwatch, and may choose to adjust a tiny bit here, and there to improve positioning. (for cover, for firing arc or anything)
Also it could be used to reorganize the 5 cm cohesion, which is a requirement for this order. This way a formation a bit loosened may still go into overwatch if it can reset it's cohesion with the 5 cm consolidation move.
(I just had a battle where it could be useful, as my garrisoning infantry lost cohesion due to artillery fire.)

Pre F.A.Q. for this;
-You may not move 5 cm after Garrison, they must hold the objective (1 unit must be in 15 cm)
-You may not move into enemy zone of control (obvious)
-You may not move 5 cm if the unit's movement speed is 0. (immobile)
-If you choose to NOT move, then the enemy may not fire it's overwatch upon you, otherwise it can!

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 Post subject: Re: Overwatch debate
PostPosted: Thu Jul 04, 2013 10:44 am 
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Full ontopic this time (hijack failed :P )

We had a battle yesterday where the "overwatch debate" situation came up.
We played it with a combination of the two side of the coin.

The overwatch fire is triggered, whenever the enemy formations movement passes the overwatch fire zone. Same way as aircraft touching the AA "bubble".
However the shooting itself is resolved at the end of the exact movement, so it may occur that the entire enemy formation goes behind cover / out of line of sight / out of range, still, if their movement touched the overwatch fire zone, they may receive their shots. (Also benefiting the cover modifiers, if there any.)
This way the zip-zapping from cover to cover is still useful and remain benefical, meanwhile the overwatch fire may always be used as the rules basicly allow it.

I can only see game slowing issues, where there is a large gap among the overwatching unit's firing range. To punctually solve it, three markers may be required;
-One for showing the maximum range compared to the enemy movement path.
-One for showing the minimum range compared to the enemy movement path. (Actually it is for the opponent to adjust the probable firepower, and decide the risk according.)
-One for indicating how deep the enemy formation stepped into the fire zone.

After placing the marker, or indicating in any other method, the opponent finishes his movement.
Then the other player, looking at the markers (who may shot, are there any cover etc.) decides to use up the overwatch fire.

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 Post subject: Re: Overwatch debate
PostPosted: Wed Jul 24, 2013 9:00 pm 
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Huh. I was playing it this weekend thinking Overwatch triggered at the beginning of a move. I think it's more realistic that way, but I do get the whole "vehicles racing past" thing. Not that it would have mattered in our game, since we were dealing with troops on foot.

So I'm assuming that if a unit ends its move in cover, the Overwatch fire "to hit" is suitably adjusted?

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 Post subject: Re: Overwatch debate
PostPosted: Wed Jul 24, 2013 9:37 pm 
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If you were to house rule an alteration to "when" overwatch occurs I'd suggest we take a page from the Panzer Leader engine (used in tons of Avalon Hills games) which is pretty well thought out and reasonable. They had an almost identical concept as overwatch but they referred to it as opportunity fire. Basically if an enemy is visible to the prepared unit for a percentage of their movement (or greater) then they've been "exposed" long enough for the enemy to react and take target on the formation. At any point from there to the end of the formation's movement the player may choose to open fire on the formation. In that system it was 1/3rd but for our needs something more like 2/3 OR at end of movement/pre-assault as desired by the overwatch player would probably make sense. Basically it boils down to if you're "hoping" from cover to cover the distance between them starts to matter, as it should. In addition, faster units/formations are harder to target and hit, as they should be :D

I should point out that back in Rogue Trader days, this exact rule was introduced, and accredited to AV Games, for use in 40k in as an optional rule via White Dwarf Mag. (uhhhg i'm old :D )

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 Post subject: Re: Overwatch debate
PostPosted: Sun Nov 03, 2013 12:29 pm 
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Hmm, I would suggest allowing overwatch to trigger at any point of the move. Would only be dropping one sentence IIRC. Elegant solution for this problem IMO.


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 Post subject: Re: Overwatch debate
PostPosted: Sun Nov 03, 2013 9:12 pm 
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The benefit of the existing rule is that you don't have to actually move each piece individually and accurately. Often your decision to overwatch will depend in how many units are in range, which means you'd have to move every unit in the target formation simultaneously and along its exact path. I just can't see how it can work.

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 Post subject: Re: Overwatch debate
PostPosted: Sun Nov 03, 2013 10:40 pm 
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I think there is value to the simplicity of the rule as it currently stands. Also, there are other "unrealistic" elements to the game already. Even if we discount the obvious ones e.g. xenos, the warp, teleport etc.


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