World War One ASL

Eric Westfere

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I thought I read a thread that someone was making world war one for the asl system. I saw something on critical hit's website. But no information when it will be coming out. Has any one else seen this? I would be very interested in this if it does see the light of day.
 

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I thought I read a thread that someone was making world war one for the asl system. I saw something on critical hit's website. But no information when it will be coming out. Has any one else seen this? I would be very interested in this if it does see the light of day.
Wild Bill Wilder has been flogging "Great War" knock-offs (expanding to Zulu Wars and Spanish-American War too) which are... um... interesting, and a source for the expression of strong opinions on these forums.

I've seen the blurb for CH!s Great War series. No idea how that one will be received.

There have been comments around here that only late war (1918) had tactics and organization that might be replicated in the ASL system, but it would be a stretch. Obviously it would play quite differently from standard ASL.
 

Eric Westfere

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1914 had some room for moving, hitting the forts in belgium, I would aslo think that the world war one asl would be pretty heavy on art. Still when it comes out I will probably get it. As to the wild bill stuff, I take pitman's advice to heart.
 

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1914 had some room for moving, hitting the forts in belgium, I would aslo think that the world war one asl would be pretty heavy on art. Still when it comes out I will probably get it. As to the wild bill stuff, I take pitman's advice to heart.
I have rules which I downloaded from cote1664.net for Advanced Squad Leader "The Great War 1914-1918" which contain 8 pages of rules and one scenario. the cote1664 homepage is fine but if you try to follow the link on the right to "ASL -- The Great War" it's broken ('getting worked on') [the site's in French but the rules -- when available -- are in English.]
 

Michael Dorosh

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Follow the tag at the bottom of this thread to many, many discussions on alternate eras and their representation in ASL. In 1914, the company was the basic unit of maneuver, but by 1917, the platoon and in some cases, the "squad" had supplanted it, making ASL an appropriate means of representing combat at the tactical level.
 

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I have rules which I downloaded from cote1664.net for Advanced Squad Leader "The Great War 1914-1918" which contain 8 pages of rules and one scenario. the cote1664 homepage is fine but if you try to follow the link on the right to "ASL -- The Great War" it's broken ('getting worked on') [the site's in French but the rules -- when available -- are in English.]
AdvancedSquadLeader.net has copies of The Great War material http://advancedsquadleader.net/index.php/The_Great_War_1914-18
 

L'Emperor

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1914 had some room for moving, hitting the forts in belgium, I would aslo think that the world war one asl would be pretty heavy on art.
But the tactics were very different. The squad would not be the basic maneuver unit in 1914, you would need to use a larger scale.
 

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AdvancedSquadLeader.net has copies of The Great War material http://advancedsquadleader.net/index.php/The_Great_War_1914-18
Thanks for the link. I lost the original download, and I now see that updates have been added.

It doesn't prevent using the framework of ASL from depicting the Great War.
I agree with this. ASL is a framework for fire and movement. Originally designed for WW2 actions, it can still be tweeked for differing tactics and capabilities in other conflicts. The thing to remember is that squad/AFV values for 1918 action are not directly comparable to squad/AFV values in 1945 -- but as long as they are comparable to same-era combatants you can have a workable combat resolution process. For WW1 action, the biggest change would probably be Command and Control of units, giving the company commander (aka player) a different set of variables to manage in the game.
 

Ganjulama

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I agree with this. ASL is a framework for fire and movement. Originally designed for WW2 actions, it can still be tweeked for differing tactics and capabilities in other conflicts. The thing to remember is that squad/AFV values for 1918 action are not directly comparable to squad/AFV values in 1945 -- but as long as they are comparable to same-era combatants you can have a workable combat resolution process. For WW1 action, the biggest change would probably be Command and Control of units, giving the company commander (aka player) a different set of variables to manage in the game.
If you are looking at the Western Front, ASL would be difficult to replicate. However, there were other fronts that were much more fluid at the company level. I just finished reading
World War I: The African Front: An Imperial War on the Dark Continent. It was an excellent read, with many actions that I think would be easily replicated in ASL terms. I personally don't know enough about the rifles used vs. WWII, but the machine gun characteristics were similar.
 

Michael Dorosh

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I personally don't know enough about the rifles used vs. WWII, but the machine gun characteristics were similar.
The SMLE used from 1914-1918 was used unchanged by Australia until the end of the Second World War, and by the other Commonwealth nations until 1943 (to be replaced by the marginally improved No. 4 Mk 1). The German K98 was a carbine version of the Gewehr 98, meaning the action was virtually the same (the handle was bent) and the ammuntion was actually the same 7.92mm (8mm Mauser) with similar ballistics at battle ranges. The Russians similarly used a carbine version of the Mosin-Nagant from 1944, otherwise the long rifle was unchanged from the First World War. Other combatants continued to use 1914-18 vintage rifles as battle rifles during the Second World War, or else 'carbine' versions of same, which at battle ranges were largely similar in terms of ballistics, accuracy, rate of fire, weight of cartridge, etc.
 

fwheel73

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It doesn't prevent using the framework of ASL from depicting the Great War.
I think this talk about ASL for WWI..... and Korea, Vietnam and other combat periods is quite exciting. MMP and others will be giving us a lot more things to buy and scenarios to play.... haven't really played but a relative few of the 2-4000 current scenarios out there..... however, a very important set of questions is:
1. Will the Plano continue to be the storage device of choice? And,
2. Should we start purchasing those Plano's now before the price goes up? :)
Best regards,:salute:
John
 

Ganjulama

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The SMLE used from 1914-1918 was used unchanged by Australia until the end of the Second World War, and by the other Commonwealth nations until 1943 (to be replaced by the marginally improved No. 4 Mk 1). The German K98 was a carbine version of the Gewehr 98, meaning the action was virtually the same (the handle was bent) and the ammuntion was actually the same 7.92mm (8mm Mauser) with similar ballistics at battle ranges. The Russians similarly used a carbine version of the Mosin-Nagant from 1944, otherwise the long rifle was unchanged from the First World War. Other combatants continued to use 1914-18 vintage rifles as battle rifles during the Second World War, or else 'carbine' versions of same, which at battle ranges were largely similar in terms of ballistics, accuracy, rate of fire, weight of cartridge, etc.
Wow Michael, most impressive. What can you tell me about German and Commonwealth MGs used in 1914?
 

Calimero

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If you are looking at the Western Front, ASL would be difficult to replicate. However, there were other fronts that were much more fluid at the company level. I just finished reading
World War I: The African Front: An Imperial War on the Dark Continent. It was an excellent read, with many actions that I think would be easily replicated in ASL terms. I personally don't know enough about the rifles used vs. WWII, but the machine gun characteristics were similar.
That sounds like an interesting book.
Who is the author ? I'll have to look it up in amazon and see if I can get it.

jp
 

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Wow Michael, most impressive. What can you tell me about German and Commonwealth MGs used in 1914?
The most obvious change was with Germany. The use of the MG 34 and later MG 42 in replacing WW I guns in all roles. The Germans used the Maxim MG 08 as the standard medium/heavy MG in WW I and introduced a lightened version as a "LMG" as the MG 08/15. The "light" version was still water cooled and heavy. They also had small numbers of Madsen and Bergmann MG 15 LMGs which were true LMGs. Some MG 08 were still in use in WW II. Use the Axis Minor MMG/HMG for the MG 08 and an Axis Minor LMG with 3 pp for the MG 08/15.

Austria-Hungary used the Schwarzlose MG M 07/12 as the MMG/HMG and was still in use by many armies (Dutch, Hungarian) in WW2. The Axis Minor MMG/HMG is the closest. It was one of the few non-Maxim type MMG/HMG used in WW I.

Britain used the Vickers-Maxim in WW I and until the '60s. The Russians used their version of the Maxim from WW I until about the '60s.

The Italians used the Fiat-Revelli M 1914 fed by a magazine holding 10 5 round rifle clips, later developed into the belt fed M 1935 WW II MG.

The Hotchkiss M1914 was used by the French and Japanese in both WW as their MMG/HMG. It was also used by the US in WW1 alongside the Browning M1917 (US HMG). The British also used the Hotchkiss M1909 in their armoured cars and tanks.

So far, apart from the Germans, MMG/HMG in WW I use were still in use in WW2. The main difference was with LMG. By WW2 many nations were using using versions of either the WW I Madsen or the inter war Czech ZB 26 (e.g. Bren). The Soviets had their DP 1928, the French the FM 24/29 and the US only a few Lewis and Johnson M1941.

In WW I the significant LMGs were the Madsen, Lewis and Chauchat.
The Lewis was used by Belgium, Britain, Russia and Germany (captured). Still in second line use by many nations in WW II. A bit heavier and bulkier than their competitors. Axis Minor LMG, but 2 PP .
The Danish Madsen was used by Germany and Russia in WW I and by many nations until WW II (Denmark, Norway, Dutch). Allied Minor LMG.
The Chauchat was used by the French and US. Use Italian LMG with B10 for French use and B9 for US use.
The US had the BAR in both WW but is not a separate weapon in ASL.

I will not comment much about Italian or Japanese MGs in either WW except to say that many used oiled rounds (add dust and mud), weird feeding mechanisms and multiple calibres. The Japanese in particular had such a variety of weapons, mechanisms, 2 calibres (6.5 & 7.7 mm) and even rimmed and non-rimmed 7.7 mm rounds! One MG, if I remember correctly, had to have a lower power 7.7 mm than the standard rifle round due to reliability issues.
 

Michael Dorosh

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I would add the Colt Machine Gun to the list above. The "potato digger" was used by the Americans, notably at the time of the war, though I don't know if they actually used them in France. The Canadians, however, went to France in early 1915 with the Colt, and used them extensively, with use tapering off by Vimy Ridge where some infantry battalions used them for the last time, replacing them all with the Lewis, one per infantry platoon.

The Lewis continued in use in the Second World War, and would have seen action in 1940 had Germany invaded the UK. They were used as anti-aircraft weapons by the Army probably later than 1940, until sufficient Brens were available.
 

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While the Western Front were static on an operational level, if you zoom in to look at company level you will find a lot of movement. Just because the end result of a battle usually was some very minor movement of the front, doesn't mean that there wasn't a lot of things going on when you look at it in ASL scale (there was). An advance of a few km might be insignificant on an operational level, but could provide for many ASL scenarios.

You need to find an action were both sides fought with squads as tactical elements (NOT common) or one were the attackers fight with squads and the defenders have been sufficiently punished by the artillery preparation to just be small groups of scattered men (very common!).
 

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I have two good books by John Walter regarding rifles and MGs: "Central Powers' Small Arms of World War One" and "Allied Small Arms of World War One". For low-level infantry tactics of ww1 I can recommend Gudmundsson's "Stormtroop Tactics - Innovation in the German Army, 1914-1918" and Rommel's "Infantry Attacks". A good introduction to ww1 tactics in general is "Command or Control? Command Training and Tactics in the British and German Armies, 1888-1918" by Martin Samuels.

English+Gudmundsson's "On Infantry" is probably mandatory reading for this discussion as well. It deals with the development of infantry tactics throughout the 20th century and discusses the changes from 1914 to 1918 and then what happened in different armies between the wars.

Currently reading Zuber's "The Battle of the Frontiers - Ardennes 1914" (note the 1 in 14, not 1944 :) ). While it uses that particular battle, between French and German armies in August 1914 as an example, it is really a book about the preparations and tactics developed in general in the two armies before the war. While interesting, I agree with above comments that 1914 would not make for a good ASL game because of unit sizes.
 
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