Menu:

Morale Modifications

Introduction

The morale system in Stargrunt II was too forgiving. Here are three rules for simply changing the Confidence Tests that give more drastic, and realistic, results. These rules can be used together or separately, though it is suggested that you use all three rules.

High Casualty Test

One of the most severe morale tests is made whenever a unit suffers casualties greater than the number of figures remaining in the unit after the combat result. This test has a Threat Level (TL) of 4/3/1 for Low/Medium/High motivation troops. If a squad has 5 men and loses 3 (with 2 remaining) it would make this severe Confidence Test. If the squad of 5 lost 2 figures (with 3 remaining) it would not make the severe Confidence Test. Instead, the squad would make the lesser "squad took casualties" Confidence Test is with a TL of 2/1/NTR.

The problem is that this test doesn't take into account severe casualties made to a squad over time. For instance, if a squad has 8 men and loses 2 men per turn, it would never have to make this severe Confidence Test. Even after 6 of the original 8 men are wounded, the squad still doesn't have to make a difficult morale check. This often leads to squads reduced to 1 or 2 figures with Confident or Steady Confidence Levels.

To remedy this, use the following two simple changes to the morale rules:

  1. The Threat Level 4/3/1 Confidence test for Low/Medium/High motivation troops is made whenever a unit suffers casualties greater than or equal to the number of figures remaining in the unit.
  2. The squad information sheets have a space for filling out the squad's Full Strength complement. Whenever a squad has lost a running total of 50% or more of its original Full Strength complement, it must make a Threat Level 4/3/1 Confidence test for Low/Medium/High motivation troops. For instance, a squad that originally had 8 figures would make this test when it was reduced to 4 or fewer figures. This test is made once a squad has lost half of its original complement and for every casualty thereafter.

When combining two or more units, you need to know the Full Strength complement of this new, combined unit. The new unit would have a Full Strength complement equal to the original Full Strength complement of the largest unit, or the number of figures in the new unit, whichever is greater.

Example of the Rule Modification in Action

A squad of 8 figures is attacked three times. Each time it takes 2 casualties.

In the original rules, this would result in the unit having to make 3 TL 2/1/0 Confidence Tests, even though at the end of it the unit would have suffered 75% casualties. One more casualty would result in another TL 1/1/0 test, in spite of the fact that only one figure would be left in the squad.

With this rules modification, the unit would make a TL 2/1/0 Confidence Test when it lost the first 2 figures, a TL 4/3/1 test when it lost the next 2 figures (it would be down to half strength at this point), and a TL 4/3/1 test each time it took any more casualties.

Abandoning Wounded

There is a +3/+2/+1 modifier (for Low/Medium/High motivation troops) to Confidence Tests for abandoning wounded. According to the rules this only applies when there's another Confidence Test (see the errata and clarifications section of this web site).

This house rule applies a TL 3/2/1 Confidence Test at the moment the wounded are abandoned. For instance, if a squad retreats from an enemy, leaving wounded behind, a 3/2/1 Confidence Test is made. If another Confidence Test is required against a unit that has abandoned wounded, the +3/+2/+1 modifier still applies.

Jon Tuffley, Stargrunt II's author, thinks that this is an interesting house rule. "I think this could work well, especially for those people who don't feel that confidence degrades fast enough in the rules as written."

Artillery and Aerospace Attacks

The Situation in the Rules As Written

There is a +2/+1/+0 modifier (for Low/Medium/High motivation troops) to Confidence Tests when a unit is under artillery or aerospace attack. This modifier applies to any Confidence Test made by a unit when it is under artillery attack or aerospace attack.

As per Jon Tuffley's errata on Confidence Tests, this is a modifier to a Confidence Test, not a Confidence Test in its own right. If targets come under artillery fire but they aren't suppressed for the first time and don't take casualties, it's unlikely they will suffer any ill effects.

Artillery and Aerospace Confidence Test House Rule

If a unit makes a Confidence Test while under artillery or aerospace attack, treat the attack as a +2/+1/+0 modifier as per the regular Stargrunt II rules.

If a unit is under artillery or aerospace attack and doesn't have to make a Confidence Test for some other reason, the unit must make an Artillery and Aerospace Confidence Test. This is a TL 2/1/NTR Confidence Test (for Low/Medium/High motivation troops).

The Artillery and Aerosapce Confidence Test is made if no other Confidence Tests apply tothat unit. If there is another Confidence Test, apply the +2/+1/+0 modifier to that test instead.

Example: On turn 1 a medium motivation squad is suppressed for the first time by an artillery attack. It must make a TL 2 Confidence test: TL 1 for being suppressed for the first time, and a TL +1 for being under an artillery attack. On turn 2 the same squad is attacked again by artillery, but there are no casualties and the unit isn't even suppressed. Even so, the unit must still make a TL 1 Confidence Test for being subjected to an artillery attack.

Jon Tuffley, Stargrunt II's author, thinks that this is an interesting house rule. To quote: "I think this could work well, especially for those people who don't feel that confidence degrades fast enough in the rules as written."