ASL Game Mechanics - Rate of Fire (ROF)
by, 20 Jul 09 at 16:48 (1852 Views)
After the IFT v IIFT blog, I figured I might want to post about some of the other game mechanics in ASL. This blog post is about Rate of Fire (ROF).
Normally you throw a colored die (cdr) and a white die (wdr) as part of the (I)IFT attack DR. Some sets of ASL kit come with a red+white, some black+white, and others had different colors paired with the white die. Having multiple colors also speeds random selection, but that's another blog post...
(Non ASL player reminder, dr = 1d6, DR=2d6.)
So for a HMG (Heavy Machine Gun) which normally has a ROF 3, if the colored dr is <=3 you get to shoot that weapon again. Very handy sometimes. Medium MG normally have ROF 2, and Light MG have ROF 1. Guns and mortars usually have a range of ROF, until you get up to the bigger sized guns. (Worst case is an assault mortar that takes a whole player turn to reload... No ROF for that vehicle at all.)
One of the side effects (bad, according to some folks) is that when you roll low on the DR, you're getting a good result on the fire table (whichever one you selected) and getting rate to shoot again. Conversely, if you roll high enough, there is no hope of getting rate and you likely got a lousy result.
Some folks suggest a third die for ROF. Overall it doesn't change the odds of that particular die rolling low enough to get another shot, but it does disconnect the effect from the subsequent shot. That's nice, but not what the designer intended. There is even a footnote in Chapter C (Footnote 6 I think, but I can't lay my hands on a rulebook at the moment) that basically says ROF for guns is because the original shots were well aimed the crew had more time to engage that particular target again, or to switch targets. Game designers intent is fairly clear from that footnote, in my opinion.
The other reason I wouldn't suggest such a thing unless absolutely necessary is that it adds complexity where it's not worth it. Playing someone new at a tournament, and you have to try to remember which die is Rate, and which two are the actual result. ASL is complicated enough, why throw in more delays and confusion creating options?