Other Rule Variants

We tend to tweak things beyond our House Rules from time to time. I’ve put these other rule variants on a separate page in a futile attempt to keep everything organized and readable.

1.10 Optional variants. Here are some ideas that I think work well, but have not been promoted yet as full “House Rules”.

1.101 Combine missile pods. Looking at the Mk. IV and Mk. VI miniatures, I would say that Combine internal missiles are not located within the OGRE’s body, but are stored inside the revolver-style launchers themselves. This suggests a variation of the missile rack rules…

To distinguish them from 3.04.2‘s missile racks, let’s call the Combine’s launchers “missile pods” instead (they look more like pods anyways). The ammo for each pod must be kept track of separately. When a pod is destroyed, the remaining missiles in that pod (if any) are also destroyed. The Mk. IV has pods containing 5 missiles each, while the OGRE Ninja and Mk. VI use pods with 4 missiles each.

1.102 Paneuro launch tubes. Related to this last variant, it might be interesting to have Fencers and Dopps keep their ‘pool’ of missiles for all launchers, giving the Paneuro cybertanks a different feel from Combine OGREs. They don’t look like missile racks to me, so I refer to them as “launch tubes”, but follow the same rules as canon missile racks.

(For extra rule-fiddly goodness, check out my proposed Legionnaire and Huscarl variants on the Paneuropean Cybertanks page.)

1.103 AP point defense. An OGRE uses its AP weapons for point defense against incoming attacks, not just to mow down infantry. If all of an OGRE’s antipersonnel units are destroyed, then treat any “D” result to an OGRE component as an “X” instead (except for spillover fire). This gives attackers some reason to take out an OGRE’s AP.

1.104 Souped-Up GEV-PCs. As written, GEV-PCs are pretty lame. I’ve never actually seen them taken as armour units, although I have selected them when permitted to spend Infantry points to do so. I don’t think it would imbalance anything to permit each GEV-PC a single Infantry squad when selected as an armour unit. If you want to get finicky, then this would drive their cost down to 4 VPs.

Also, try allowing GEV-PCs to be selected as part of the “Infantry” allotment (but without the bonus squad).

1.105 Movement point rounding. 5.09 states that units with a movement of 1 (such as mobile howitzers and damaged OGREs) are allowed to move a minimum of 1 hex per turn, even through difficult terrain. As a variant, allow any unit with at least one movement remaining in a turn to move into hex with difficult terrain. In other words, when using this variant, round all fractional movement points up.

(I used to think this was the default movement rule. This variant reduces the differences between terrain types.)

1.106 Urban hovercraft. With this variant, town hexes cost 2 movement points for GEVs to enter (overriding GEV 5.083). There is no chance of the GEVs becoming disabled, nor do town hexes end GEV movement for the turn. This rule is highly recommended for urban maps; otherwise GEVs can move only a single hex per turn through the city sprawl, rendering them near-useless.

(This optional rule works well on custom maps with lots of urban areas.)

1.20 Borrowed rules. These are a collection of variant OGRE rules filched from other sources that are often used in our games. References are provided where convenient. Many of these have been tweaked or adapted from their original form. If you think that I’ve mangled your rule, drop me a line.

1.201 The Fuzzy-Wuzzy defense. (Based on Lawrence Duffield’s article “OGREs and the Fuzzy Wuzzy Fallacy” in the OGRE Book.) To counter the effect of the “Fuzzy Wuzzy” phenomenon, it is recommended that no more than 25% of the point value of a force be made up of identical units, unless this total represents a single large figure (such as an OGRE).

1.202 Combined arms. I would also suggest a “Combined Arms” guideline. At least 25% of the point value of a force must consist of infantry (or varients) plus their transport units, unless specified ahead of time. Transport units include GEV-PCs, APCs, trucks, and hovertrucks. (Otherwise it’s too easy to take an all-armour force, which is not very realistic.)

1.203 Forward observers. (Modified Henry Cobb’s article “Back to the Drawing Board” in the OGRE Book). This rule variant helps overcome the apparent weakness of the “missile-lobber” units. With the forward observers rule, heavy missile weapons may extend their effective range by 50% when they combine fire with normal infantry fire. Units eligible to get this boosted range include missile tanks, howitzers (all types), OGRE missiles, and the missiles used by heavy weapons infantry.

As you may discern, I am an incorrigible house-ruler, and feel the need to impose my judgments upon others.

2 comments on “Other Rule Variants

  1. A sensible selection of house rules. I’m currently working on preparing another Ogre/GEV article for Miniature Wargames magazine that will feature some C&C/force morale rules, with a quick and dirty set of rules to link scenarios into a mini-campaign. Like you, doing my part to keep up the interest in Ogre/GEV.

  2. Thanks. It’s always a temptation to house-rule a game into oblivion. One of the appeals of OGRE is that the rules are relatively straightforward (at least until you get to Shockwave).

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