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Wondering if I should remove individual unit management in a wargame

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larienna
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Joined: 07/28/2008

Here is a current picture of the prototype, there is 3 players fighting against an AI (the game is also playable solo)

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As you can see, it has some similarities with axis and allies, but the difference is that each player has a unique set of units and the AI player has all the same units which is Artillery, Infantry, Cavalry, since it takes place in 1871.

Now the problem is that managing all those individual units on the board can become very fiddly. They also have 3 different owner, units can be transfered between owners but must remain owned by the new player when transfered (determined by the top token of the stack).

In axis and allies, I could say there is tactical maneuvering, because units can move more than 1 space. Planes can support from farther away, ships could move and land troops in coastal areas. While in my game, all units move 1 space except maybe some flying creatures that can cross over sea areas and maybe more 2 areas.

So the "Strategic" decision in maneuvering seems more like bring an assorted set of units to the battle, rather than what is the best way to maneuver my troops. Which made me wonder if I should not simplify and automatise the process.

The AI use a single token to mark ownership of the territory. When there is a battle, a certain number of units is put on the battlefield for combat resolution and after the battle if the AI is the winner, the leftover units are placed back on the map. On the next reinforcement, they revert back to a single token.

Since there is a certain amount of strategy in combat resolution, that requires putting the units off board, I was wondering if I should instead make pre-defined army tokens that comes with it's own set of units. Then split the token in multiple units when a battle occurs.

The advantage is that it would make the game less fiddly and prevent the player to focus on a single unit for example (Hire only minotaurs). Still leftovers are going to be placed on the board and they will probably remain as they are until they die. Or maybe leftovers cannot attack by themselves and can only hold areas.

I am just scared that sacrificing individual unit management will simply kill the core fun of the game. But maybe the fun of my game is more in the battle resolution where you put more time compare to axis and allies (my game use a system like Battlemist which adds routing to axis and allies)

X3M
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Joined: 10/28/2013
I am also using the mechanic:

I am also using the mechanic: "Combat resolution off the board."

Only split up the units when it is really needed. In most combat games. The fire is focussed on single units until they are dead. Then you head on to the next unit.
In that case, having counters on 1 single unit would be better. Since you simply can reduce the number on this counter after the battle.

This way, you have less pieces on the board. And in the combat phase.

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