Placing single OB-designated "?" during setup

Elfego Baca

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I don't see it prohibited by A12.12, but I have to ask anyway ... Can I place a single OB "?" counter on the mapboard during my setup?

(And if you're wondering why I'm asking, SSR#5 of ASL4 (Commissar's House) prohibits the German player from setting up adjacent to a Russian "?" counter. So placing a few solo "?" counters might deprive the German of good forward setup positions. I'm not saying that this is a smart move ... still, the SSR seems to allow it as a strategy.)

TY.

PS> Sorry for posting this in wrong topic area. Don't know how to relocate it to the general Q&A topic list
 

Michael R

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No.

A12.1

...a concealment counter ("?") is placed above such units so as to hide their true nature and provide them with several pertinent advantages. No unit can be concealed more than once at any one time, although one or more Dummy counters (12.11) can be placed atop a unit(s).

A12.11

...If a scenario allocates a number of "?" available for setup at the start of the scenario, those "?" can be placed atop each other to act as Dummies—thus giving the mistaken impression of a stack of real counters beneath a "?" but a single such counter cannot be placed beneath unconcealed units.
 

jrv

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I don't see it prohibited by A12.12, but I have to ask anyway ... Can I place a single OB "?" counter on the mapboard during my setup?

(And if you're wondering why I'm asking, SSR#5 of ASL4 (Commissar's House) prohibits the German player from setting up adjacent to a Russian "?" counter. So placing a few solo "?" counters might deprive the German of good forward setup positions. I'm not saying that this is a smart move ... still, the SSR seems to allow it as a strategy.)

TY.

PS> Sorry for posting this in wrong topic area. Don't know how to relocate it to the general Q&A topic list
You can set up a dummy stack but you can't set up a concealment counter (the top-most "?" in a stack) without a unit under it. I'm not sure I can show this in the rules, I'm fairly sure that the answer to a q&a on this would be "no."

JR
 

Elfego Baca

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Mike:

"... but a single such counter cannot be placed beneath unconcealed units."

I don't think the rules prohibit that either. What you couldn't then do is add a non-OB "?" on top of that stack.
 

Elfego Baca

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Ignore what I just wrote ....

Mike, you're correct. I didn't look at 12.11.
 

Binchois

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There can never be a single "?" counter alone in a hex (nor at the bottom of a stack of non-? counters). While I don't think this is explicitly stated, it is strongly inferrable by the first paragraph of A12.11.

In short, a concealed unit is one beneath a "?" counter, and "dummies" are defined as being at least one "?" placed beneath another:

A12.11 A unit or stack of units beneath a "?" is not a Known enemy unit and cannot be inspected by the opposing player. If a hex contains both concealed and unconcealed units, the unconcealed units must be placed on top. If a scenario allocates a number of "?" available for setup at the start of the scenario, those "?" can be placed atop each other to act as Dummiesthus giving the mistaken impression of a stack of real counters beneath a "?" but a single such counter cannot be placed beneath unconcealed units.​
 

Elfego Baca

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No further argument from me. Consider the subject closed.

And thanks for all the feedback! (And to whomever moved the thread to the correct place.)
 

Swiftandsure

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Footnote 18 relating to A12.1 suggests an optional way of placing concealement counters, explaining that it is the only way allowing to place one alone per hex.
Which means that it is not normally allowed.
18.12.1 CONCEALMENT: A more realistic alternative for players who are willing to sacrifice speed of play is to secretly record the "contents" of each "?" and keep those pieces offboard out of sight until revealed. Each "?" is printed with an ID letter for this purpose. A "?" can exist alone in a hex only when this system is in use. Ideally, of course, the best "Fog of War" or concealment rules involve use of a neutral third person acting as a referee. The players make their moves in separate rooms on separate games, while the referee observes their moves and reports to the opponent only those moves and attacks which he judges the opponent will be able to see. Play-by-phone schemes with the judge acting as a neutral moderator while positioning all the counters on his board as the action unfolds but passing on only those moves which he judges to be in actual LOS of an opposing unbroken unit make for fascinating, if somewhat lengthy, simulations of actual combat.
 

Larry

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Robin's citation to 18.1 is an overture to the cloaking rules in Chapter E.
 

Tater

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No.

A12.1

...a concealment counter ("?") is placed above such units so as to hide their true nature and provide them with several pertinent advantages. No unit can be concealed more than once at any one time, although one or more Dummy counters (12.11) can be placed atop a unit(s).

A12.11

...If a scenario allocates a number of "?" available for setup at the start of the scenario, those "?" can be placed atop each other to act as Dummies—thus giving the mistaken impression of a stack of real counters beneath a "?" but a single such counter cannot be placed beneath unconcealed units.
How do either of those rules prohibit setting up a single "?" counter?

A12.1 just describes what "?" are for. Suppose you don't want to..."simulate an opposing unit's inability to see these units"...a "?" is a unit and if you don't want to hide the fact that it is a lone "?" then that is the players option based on A12.1.

A12.11 says "can be placed atop each other" not "must be placed atop each other". And a lone "?" counter isn't being placed beneath unconcealed units.

There is no "must" or "can't" stated or even implied in either rule.

Now "real" units (SMC, MMC, vehicles, etc) cannot be "?" unless under a "?" counter. So any lone "?" is obviously just a lone dummy and setting up such a lone "?" counter won't get you much...unless there is a half-baked SSR that makes doing so useful...case in point.
 

Swiftandsure

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If a lone concealement counter could be placed in a hex, it could serve as a sniper bait and could prevent concealment gain for opponent units in its LOS.
But I don't think that the rules allow such placement.
 

Binchois

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How do either of those rules prohibit setting up a single "?" counter?

A12.1 just describes what "?" are for. Suppose you don't want to..."simulate an opposing unit's inability to see these units"...a "?" is a unit and if you don't want to hide the fact that it is a lone "?" then that is the players option based on A12.1.

A12.11 says "can be placed atop each other" not "must be placed atop each other". And a lone "?" counter isn't being placed beneath unconcealed units.

There is no "must" or "can't" stated or even implied in either rule.

Now "real" units (SMC, MMC, vehicles, etc) cannot be "?" unless under a "?" counter. So any lone "?" is obviously just a lone dummy and setting up such a lone "?" counter won't get you much...unless there is a half-baked SSR that makes doing so useful...case in point.
Preventing concealment gain is a big enough reason to want allot of "?" counters crawling around the map and a big reason to prohibit the placement of single "?"s! And I do think that A12.11 is pretty clear that these are not allowed. You read from the first part of the oh-so-long sentence (yes, it says "can" and not "must"):

If a scenario allocates a number of "?" available for setup at the start of the scenario, those "?" can be placed atop each other to act as Dummies —​

But note the next part:

thus giving the mistaken impression of a stack of real counters beneath a "?"
Why say "a stack" of counters "beneath a ?" counter if a single "?" is allowed? The intention of this and other rules is to make a distinction: the top "?" is a Concealment Counter. Any "?" beneath a Concealment Counter is a "Dummy".

Add this to the final statement:

but a single such counter cannot be placed beneath unconcealed units.​

I am wondering why a single "?" couldn't be placed beneath a unconcealed stack if a "?" was otherwise allowed to exist alone.
 

Swiftandsure

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the rules don't disallow.
See my post where I cite the footnote about an optional concealment rule.
It clearly implies that the usual concealment rule doesn't allow the placement of a lone counter in a hex.
I don't know if COWTRA should be applied here, but that rules "don't disallow" something does not mean that it is allowed.
 

Ric of The LBC

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See my post where I cite the footnote about an optional concealment rule.
It clearly implies that the usual concealment rule doesn't allow the placement of a lone counter in a hex.
I don't know if COWTRA should be applied here, but that rules "don't disallow" something does not mean that it is allowed.
replace the word can with must then I would 100% agree that it is not allowed. Until then I cannot say that a single ? cannot be placed.
 

Tater

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replace the word can with must then I would 100% agree that it is not allowed. Until then I cannot say that a single ? cannot be placed.
No need, check the index...definition of "unit". A single "?" counter is not a "unit", it has to be a "dummy stacks" to be a unit. Snipers only attack enemy units. Concealment specifically notes "dummies" to prevent "?" loss.

So a lone "?" counter in a hex is not an eligible sniper target nor can it prevent "?" gain because it doesn't meet the definition of "unit". That would also mean that a lone "?" counter could not move.

So, that being the case, setting up lone "?" counters is completely pointless unless someone comes up with an ill conceived SSR that use "concealment counter" rather than "concealed unit".
 

Ric of The LBC

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No need, check the index...definition of "unit". A single "?" counter is not a "unit", it has to be a "dummy stacks" to be a unit. Snipers only attack enemy units. Concealment specifically notes "dummies" to prevent "?" loss.

So a lone "?" counter in a hex is not an eligible sniper target nor can it prevent "?" gain because it doesn't meet the definition of "unit". That would also mean that a lone "?" counter could not move.

So, that being the case, setting up lone "?" counters is completely pointless unless someone comes up with an ill conceived SSR that use "concealment counter" rather than "concealed unit".
you previously argued that it is allowed or did I interpret you wrong?
 

Tater

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you previously argued that it is allowed or did I interpret you wrong?
No, read my last post again...it is allowed but it is pointless. A lone "?" counter has no affect on play at all so there is no reason to do it. The exception being poorly written SSR that use the term "concealment counter" as opposed to "concealed unit". Such misuse could lead to some unintended affect/purpose.
 

Ric of The LBC

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No, read my last post again...it is allowed but it is pointless. A lone "?" counter has no affect on play at all so there is no reason to do it. The exception being poorly written SSR that use the term "concealment counter" as opposed to "concealed unit". Such misuse could lead to some unintended affect/purpose.
Ahhh, gottcha. Agree, why?, other than the reason in the OP it seems pointless.
 
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