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Panzer Grenadier Optional Rules
By Peter McCord
September 2015

Panzer Grenadier was designed to be both playable and realistic. As a part-time playtester and rules editor I have found the game to be very satisfying, and I rarely play with any “house rules” or modifications. However, like most wargamers, I occasionally feel the need to tinker with the basics.

Such experiments always come at a cost. They usually increase playing time, create potential for conflicts or ambiguities in the rules, and generally slow down a player’s action/thought process. Whether or not a given rule measures up to those costs is highly subjective.

The following are purely optional rules for use with any Panzer Grenadier series game. They are meant to be as low-fuss as possible. Use them according to your taste, and realize that they may add playing time or slightly alter the balance of a given scenario.

High-Profile Movement

Before a good-order armored vehicle moves, the player may declare he is using high-profile movement. The vehicle may increase its movement by up to 50% (round fractions up). During this movement, all direct-fire opportunity fire directed at the vehicle gets an extra +1 column modifier in addition to other modifiers, and all opportunity AT fire earns an extra +2 column modifier in addition to other modifiers.

At the end of the vehicle’s movement, make a normal morale check. Failure results in disruption (but not demoralization). If a vehicle is disrupted or demoralized by opportunity fire during this move, it does not have to make the end-of-move morale check. High profile movement may not be combined with Strategic Movement.

Forced March Movement

Before moving a good-order infantry unit or leader, the player may declare a forced march. The unit adds 1 to its movement allowance for the turn but suffers a +1 column modifier on all opportunity fire directed at it during movement. At the end of the unit’s movement, make a normal morale check. Failure results in disruption (but not demoralization). If a unit is disrupted or demoralized by opportunity fire during this move, it does not have to make the end-of-move morale check. Forced March movement may not be combined with Strategic Movement.

Ammunition Limits

If a player rolls a “12” when conducting any type of fire combat, all currently-firing good-order units run low on ammunition and become disrupted. All currently-firing disrupted units run out of ammunition and become demoralized. If offboard artillery is currently firing, one factor runs out of ammunition.

Units that become disrupted or demoralized due to this rule can recover normally and suffer no other ill effects after recovery. If an offboard artillery factor runs out of ammunition, the owning player must make morale recovery rolls for that artillery factor on future activations, using the normal, full-strength morale value for the owning side. The artillery factor may begin firing again on the turn after it recovers.

Artillery Spotting

At the beginning of a scenario, each unit (off-board and on-board) with bombardment fire values must be assigned to a leader. The owning player writes the ID number of each leader and each bombardment-fire unit he can spot-for on a piece of scratch paper. Only the assigned leader may spot for the units or offboard artillery factors to which he is assigned. Such assignments must further satisfy potential scenario limits, such as paratrooper leaders that cannot spot for U.S. Army artillery in Airborne.

If an assigned artillery-spotting leader is killed, or if a player wishes to assign a single bombardment unit, an individual stack of bombardment units, or up to three offboard artillery factors to a new leader, then the owning player simply activates the new leader.

The leader and the units or offboard artillery factors rolled-for may not move, fire, or perform any action except rolling two dice to request the reassignment. If the die-roll result is less than or equal to the activated leader’s morale, then the reassignment is successful and the leader may spot for the assigned unit(s) or offboard artillery factor(s) on future turns. Write down the reassignment. The unit(s) or offboard artillery factors rolled-for may not fire on the turn in which their spotting leader is reassigned.

Failing the reassignment dice roll has no effect other than to waste the rolling leader’s activation. The unit(s) or offboard artillery factor(s) rolled-for may fire normally that turn.

Try them out! Pick up a Panzer Grenadier game today!