Sunday, November 14, 2010

Rapid Fire 10x10 Conversion: Discourse

Some time ago I sat down with every resource I had at my disposal and proceeded to calculate a conversion table for my preferred WWII wargame rule set, Rapid Fire.

In effect, what I generated was a series of tables to be used as a ready reckoner for every vehicle and gun I was likely to use for my WWII wargames. I like Rapid Fire and remain committed to 20mm wargaming in this period. Having said that, I decided that the simple 6x6 amour and gun table for calculating tank combat was not enough for me when embarking in the western desert theatre where cover was scare and differences in armoured capability and design was more telling.

Once I had got stuck in, I started to wonder what I had gotten myself into. First principles for the conversions was to stick to the original 6x6 tables and vehicle attributes as identified in the original rule set and expansion books. In doing so, I had to decide when the old armour class B was a new armour class B or C and where a previous class gun within 1-6 would fall within my new 1-10 scale.

I determined where I was happy was the mid-point with penetration power (largely determined by calibre over velocity) and largely with armour thickness and when applied, armour slope. In doing so, I was able to include a considerable array of vehicles and guns for which there was no previous representation within existing Rapid Fire rules and supplements.

I have uploaded as pdf documents my charts for the Americans, British/Commonwealth, French and German guns, tanks and sundry vehicles. I have done the Italians but for the time being cannot find the file. If I cannot locate it, I will scan my previously printed version and upload that. I have not converted for either Russians or Japanese as I have no immediate expectations in gaming with or against either army. When that changes, and if I convert their vehicle lists, this Blog will be the first to know.

My charts allow for front and side armour calculations, include whether vehicles had radios or not, used high explosive (HE) and/or armour piercing (AP) rounds, had the capacity to discharge smoke or flame and the number and placement of machine guns. I include crew numbers and engine reliability, speed class, gun calibres and date years of service. One day when I get around to it, I'll change speed classes for distance in millimetres for ease of reference.

My conversion chart is not as complete as it should be and does not provide for aircraft conversions in ground attack - something for another day. The system was in reference to the original Rapid Fire rule set. I am also confident that Messers Colin Rumford and Richard Marsh would not object and have noted their encouragement for rule adaptations when it comes to this fine wargaming system. For me, this conversion has extended the utility of this rule system indefinitely. I would be very pleased if it did so for others.

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