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AMWOOD co
09-12-2008, 05:02
I recently started a three way fight. My group has done several of these, though they are not pitched battles. I shall describe them as we use them.

Table and deployment zones:
We play on a 8' by 4' table. Using this, we have two corners on the same long side as deployment zones. These go 2' out along the long side and 1.5' in the other direction. The third deployment zone is on the other long edge. It is placed centrally, is 3' wide and 1' deep. That gives 3 deployment zones that are 3 square feet.

Objective:
It is a capture mission. The objective is any agreeable terrain, placed inbetween the two corner objectives and across from the central objective. It is placed so that the centre is 1' out from the table edge. The winner of the scenario is the player with the most victory points worth of units within 6" of this piece (ie. Units above half strength are worth full points, at half or less are worth half points. Count characters as normal.).

In our current game, we are have added the idea of captured banners contained by units within 6" of the objective are worth an additional 100 VP (we haven't done this before, but we figured 'why not?').

Deployment and turn order:
Roll for each step as normal, rerolling ties until an order is made. The +1 for first finished is the only bonus given for determining first turn.

Shooting and targetting:
You may shoot at any fight that you are not a part of. If you do, a roll of 4+ hits your target and a roll of 3- hits an opposing unit. Templates work as normal (this has rarely been an issue).

Magic:
The player whose turn it is gets 2 power dice for his pool. His opponents each get 1 dispel die and generate their pools.

For each spell cast, each defending player decides the number of dice he will put towards the spell. It can be as many as he wishes up to all his remaining dice or even 0. Table talk is allowed. If a dispel scroll or other such item is used, then no dice will be taken up by either player. Note that a dispel attempt by one defender can be sabotaged by the other with an excessive number of dice being rolled.

Targetting units in combat that are not engaged with friendly troops must be taken on a case by case scenario (I don't have an exhaustive list of all spells so I cannot dictate an exhaustive list of exceptions or scenarios). Remember that units in combat are locked and so cannot move until they are no longer fighting. Also, units in combat do not take panic, fear, or terror tests and so cannot be affected by spells that have the sole purpose of inflicting these tests. Note that only your units are 'friendly' or 'allied' units, so you may not cast spells that target such units on enemy units that are fighting another enemy. Spells are more accurate than shooting, and so do not randomize with the following exception: magic missles randomize as in shooting above.

Dispelling remains in play spells may be done at the end of every magic phase by all players.

Combat:
Combats are fought only on turns where at least one of the units involved belongs to the player whose turn it currently is. Thus a fight with units only from the two inactive players will wait until the next players turn.

In the event of a 3 way fight, resolve combat as follows:
1. Fight combat as normal, each model directing its attacks. Follow all rules for multiple chargers if they apply. Only one challenge can be issued per combat as normal.
2. All sides add up their total resolution for the fight. Outnumber goes to the 1 side with the most Unit Strength (ie. it does not have to actually outnumber both opponents, just each individually). The side(s) with the most victory points wins. If there is more than one side victorious, if a side does not have a musician while another victor does than the side without the musician loses the fight by 1.
3. All losers take a break test. The modifier for the test is the victor(s) combat resolution minus their own. If a unit breaks, it may be pursued by any freed up unit that was in contact with it that did not break. Enemies may not notice eachother until the chase is done, so two opposing units can pursue side by side as a result of this.

eg. There is a 3 way fight that takes place. One unit (Alpha) is engaged in the front by one enemy that they pursued into on their turn (Beta) and a second unit on the flank that just charged into them (Gamma). Alpha thus has no rank bonus.
At the end of the fight, Alpha scores 2 wounds, Beta 4, and Gamma 3. Alpha has no command models, Beta has full command and Gamma has a standard bearer. Neither Beta nor Gamma have a second full rank. Alpha outnumbers either of the other units.
Totals are thus Alpha 3 (2W, +1 for outnumber), Beta 5 (4 wounds, +1 for standard) and Gamma 5 (3 wounds, +1 for standard, +1 for flank). Thus, Alpha has lost by 2. Beta and Gamma tie, but Gamma does not have a musician, thus it loses by 1.
If Alpha and Beta both fail, then Gamma may pursue only Alpha (the unit it was fighting). If only Alpha fails, both Beta and Gamma may pursue (since they were not fighting eachother). If only Beta fails, neither Alpha nor Gamma may pursue as they are still fighting eachother.


That just about covers it, I think. The issue with spells and targetting really has to be taken on a case by case scenario. Find an agreeable way to do this based on the wording of the spell in question and its affect. The goal is simply to allow a damaging spell hurt an enemy that is in combat with another enemy. "The enemy of my enemy is a distraction" in this case.

The centre player is at a disadvantage, but not a hopeless one. Rushing straight at the enemy is a sure way to get killed, and you are also likely to be the only one in range of many projectile weapons of each enemy. It is possible to win, but takes a good deal of effort. The offside of this is that each corner player has a very thin deployment zone, thus severely limiting what he can send straight for the objective.

The average infantry can make it to the objective within 3 turns, (skaven and elves in 2, dwarfs in 4). They must hold it until turn 6, though. Cavalry set at the centre can rush past, but will block line of sight to missle troops and so forth.

It is worth noting that with these rules, my playing group often tries to get 4 people together for a day of gaming using 2 vs. 2 rules (to be posted later), and if one drops out we use these. It makes things so much easier than someone having to write and setup a second army for themselves.

Comments and Criticism are appreciated as they may result in changes. These rules are in need of fine tuning but are functionally sound. Appreciation on how to deal with the problem of the centre zone on the given table would be much appreciated. Note that the armies involved are usually 3000 pts per side (and so rarely fit in 2 square feet).