Armchair Dragoons Forums

Wargaming => The Modern World => Topic started by: bob48 on July 30, 2021, 05:38:23 AM

Title: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: bob48 on July 30, 2021, 05:38:23 AM
Focus On.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)

I'm sure a few of you have heard of this one.......
Its been around for a long time and I think I'm safe in saying that its probably has more expansions, modules, maps and scenario's than any other game in the history of wargaming.

I have to be honest here and say that I only played a very little of the game when it came out, but I and the small gaming group to which I belonged did play an awful lot of its predecessor, Squad leader. At that time, (late 1970's), it was probably the only WWII squad level game available and thus spent many an hour on the gaming table. Lots of scenario's and 'geomorphic' maps added much to the replayablilty of the game, and no doubt, that is still true now.

The variety of units / nations / theatres etc. that are covered is immense, so I suspect that you would be hard pressed to find a situation that is not covered somewhere amongst all the material that has been published over the years. As far as I'm aware, there is still material being published for it even now.

Are there any modules for periods other than WWII? I don't know but no doubt someone can enlighten me on that.

OK, so, tell us about the game and how YOU feel about it.
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: trailrunner on July 30, 2021, 07:36:03 AM
The variety of units / nations / theatres etc. that are covered is immense, so I suspect that you would be hard pressed to find a situation that is not covered somewhere amongst all the material that has been published over the years. As far as I'm aware, there is still material being published for it even now.

MMP is publishing 4-6 products a year, including bonus packs, reprints of major modules with significant updates, starter kit expansion packs, and historical and campaign modules.  There are also several third party publishers (TPPs) producing modules.

A couple of years ago MMP released a pocket version of the rules.  You'd have to have a large pocket for it, but it was still a nice soft-bound book that would easily fit in a backpack.  It was a big step forward from the 3-ring binder rulebook.  Earlier this year MMP finally released an electronic version of the rulebook.  It's a PDF, but there are links throughout.  Now I can carry my rulebook around on my iPad.

There has always been a dedicated group playing ASL on VASL, but when COVID hit last year, it exploded.  The face-to-face tournaments are starting again.  Our club held our small tournament earlier this month, and there are two more larger tournaments coming up next weekend - one in Atlanta and one in New Hampshire.

I'd say that ASL has had a minor revival in the past 5 years.  Preorder numbers of 600-800 are usually reached within a month.  Still, the fanbase is aging, and most players are probably over 50.  Another trend has ben the rise of the starter kit (SK).  It was originally intended as a programmed approach to learning the game (first infantry, then guns, then armored vehicles), but it has grown into a pretty legitimate game system on its own.  MMP has published close to 100 scenarios, and SK now covers the Pacific theater.  It's 80 percent of the fun of the full game but with only 50 percent of the rules (or something like that).

Are there any modules for periods other than WWII? I don't know but no doubt someone can enlighten me on that.

Forgotten War is a major module set in the Korean War.  I have it, but have not had a chance to play it yet.  I don't hear much talk about it, so I'm not sure how much it is getting played.



(http://i.imgur.com/zfoFis9.jpg) (https://imgur.com/zfoFis9)

Above is a photo from the end of the game I played last week.  I was the defending Russians, and my opponent had the attacking Germans.  The scenario was set in Smolensk in July 1941.  The Germans started at the top and had to wrest control of three large buildings, including the one you can see with both German and Russian units.  The initial German force was strong, with numerous quality troops, and MGs.  The defending Russians were weak conscripts, but they were fanatic so they were a little more robust, and they were in stone buildings.  On turn 3 the Russians received some good reinforcements, so the trick with playing the Russians was to trade casualties to buy time and hold off the Germans until the reinforcements can come in and fortify the last large building.  In particular, the Germans couldn't get too far down the map and set up fire lanes with their MGs.

The Germans started off with some bad luck, breaking their heavy MG, and losing a 5:1 close combat.  I managed to get 6 Russian squads and a medium MG into the last building, so I thought I had built an impenetrable fortress, but then in a string of low firepower attacks, he managed to break 5 out of the 6 squads by rolling low over and over.  The dice giveth, and the dice taketh.  He also took out a light MG I had positioned to cover any advance he would have to make to enter the building.  In the end, he managed to get two squads into the building, but I had one unbroken squad left in the building, which denied him control, and the Russians held on to win.



Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: bob48 on July 30, 2021, 07:48:47 AM
Excellent - lots of interesting info there  :bigthumb:
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: bayonetbrant on July 30, 2021, 08:01:47 AM
I'll have to go back and get some pictures of the Wall of ASL from The Gamer's Armory

if you start at about the 27:30 mark or so, you get a few minutes of a slightly-choppy video reveal

Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: Undercovergeek on July 30, 2021, 10:24:21 AM
Part of me would love to spend a weekend in a game bunker with this and come out blinking into the the sunlight - before my ascension to nerd-dom but if lived to have played it
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: judgedredd on July 30, 2021, 11:05:26 AM
I bought the ASL Starter Kit #1

The rule book was decently laid out but honestly each time I go to look at it - and it does draw me in - I realise I just can't play with counters that small anymore.

I'm not an authority on games or their mechanics - but I was left wondering why I should give time to it when I have other squad level, more modern games to play. You know? Kind of wondering what specifically is the draw.

Is it the amount of modules and gameplay? Is it something specifically in the rules that makes it stand apart from other modern squad level games?

Maybe I'll give it a go before the eyes get worse.....  :whistle:
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: bob48 on July 30, 2021, 11:25:29 AM
Small counters are defi8nitely a problem area for me these days.
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: trailrunner on July 30, 2021, 12:12:02 PM
I have trouble reading some of the very small print on the 5/8 inch counters, which are for vehicles and guns.  The combat factors are usually large enough to read, but the vehicle types are tiny and I have to break out a magnifying glass to read them.

I like the old-school map boards and simple counters, but this is a personal preference.  Some of the other tactical games a great, but I think the counters are a little cartoonish.  It's sort of like watching a GI Joe cartoon vs a black and white documentary with actual combat footage.

ASL is popular for several reasons.  It has a large following, so it's not too hard to find opponents.  There is a massive range of scenarios set in just about every theater and every time with just about every nation represented.  The rules allow a lot of tactical flexibility, and some games ebb and flow with drama.  I often don't care if I win or lose, but I play for the narrative that a game can produce.  Having said all of this, the rules could use an overhaul, updating, and streamlining, but this would be a massive job, and I don't see it happening.
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: judgedredd on July 30, 2021, 12:35:55 PM
It must be nigh on impossible to get a decent foothold on ASL now though - with most of the major sets and "DLC" being swiped by such a huge following though.

I also like the graphics - just wish the counters were bigger.

I'm going to commit. I had Holland '44 out on the table waiting to be setup - but I'm going to push it to the side and get ASL on the table for a game or two. I've been convinced (I don't even think I've punched or clipped them yet!)
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: bob48 on July 30, 2021, 12:41:35 PM
One of our idea's for 'Focus On' is that it will provide a place where experienced players can offer advice on rules questions or help with gameplay issues.
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: bbmike on July 30, 2021, 12:54:23 PM
I have the Pacific starter kit. Might be a good reason to open it up.  :bigthumb:
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: DoubleDeuce on July 30, 2021, 12:57:41 PM
For anyone with limited table space, small kids or cats I would highly recommend getting the VASL mod for VASSAL. That way you can play at your own, and opponents pace, leaving the 'game' up and not have to worry about mishaps. Personally I only play SASL these days, and rarely get a chance to do more that a full turn or so at a sitting, so VASL is idea for me.
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: bbmike on July 30, 2021, 01:02:30 PM
That's a good idea. Also, Tabletop Simulator would be good if nothing else than for the zoom feature. It would make reading those tiny counters even easier!
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: DoubleDeuce on July 30, 2021, 01:10:56 PM
From what I hear TTS zoom is really good. With VASL, to help, you can use Deluxe Size boards (all are available in that size iirc) and 150% zoom (gets kinda fuzzy though). I've used VASL for so long it just want I'm comfortable with/used to.
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: trailrunner on July 30, 2021, 03:27:02 PM
I have the Pacific starter kit. Might be a good reason to open it up.  :bigthumb:

Not to be discouraging, but you'll be jumping in the deep end of the SK pool and eating the whole SK 1, 2, 3, and 4 elephant with one bite.  Nothing wrong with that, but PTO has some significant differences from ETO.  These differences are really cool, but you have to change your playing style a little bit with PTO, so if you start here you'll have to learn some different things when you go back to SKs 1-3.  For example, Japanese generally don't break when they fail a morale check, and they are lethal in close combat.  SK4 also introduced concealment, which is only in effect in PTO.

Having said that - jump in - the water is great!

I also think you live in the DC area.  I've been active trying to get SK players into DC Conscripts, the local club.  Our next game day is tomorrow, and one of the veterans is going to give a little tutorial on close combat before the games begin.  I won't be there, but let me know if you want more information, or if you want to join my merry band of SK players for other game days at our houses (we had two games going on at my house last Saturday).  Or even if you want to play 1 on 1 sometime.
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: trailrunner on July 30, 2021, 03:28:25 PM
That's a good idea. Also, Tabletop Simulator would be good if nothing else than for the zoom feature. It would make reading those tiny counters even easier!

I haven't used TTS yet, but from what I've heard, it doesn't handle large stacks well, and most ASL players prefer VASL.  YMMV of course.
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: bbmike on July 30, 2021, 06:08:25 PM
I have the Pacific starter kit. Might be a good reason to open it up.  :bigthumb:

Not to be discouraging, but you'll be jumping in the deep end of the SK pool and eating the whole SK 1, 2, 3, and 4 elephant with one bite.  Nothing wrong with that, but PTO has some significant differences from ETO.  These differences are really cool, but you have to change your playing style a little bit with PTO, so if you start here you'll have to learn some different things when you go back to SKs 1-3.  For example, Japanese generally don't break when they fail a morale check, and they are lethal in close combat.  SK4 also introduced concealment, which is only in effect in PTO.

Having said that - jump in - the water is great!

I also think you live in the DC area.  I've been active trying to get SK players into DC Conscripts, the local club.  Our next game day is tomorrow, and one of the veterans is going to give a little tutorial on close combat before the games begin.  I won't be there, but let me know if you want more information, or if you want to join my merry band of SK players for other game days at our houses (we had two games going on at my house last Saturday).  Or even if you want to play 1 on 1 sometime.

I'd only ever play the PTO stuff so it's okay. Thanks for the invite to play! I'm currently about 3 hours south of DC and not sure when I'll get back up there. Of course, after I retire next year it won't matter much.  8)
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: judgedredd on July 31, 2021, 01:35:33 PM
I've just come across the issue that I think could've been the reason for me not progressing this before...

In an example about the rally phase,  the rules state that an MMC must add 1 to its die roll because its an MMC but also reduce the roll by 1 because it's in a building....but I cannot see in the TEM section in the rules any mention of a die roll modifier for any terrain

It's also not mentioned in any part of the really phase...so I don't know what modifiers are in place when it comes to terrain
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: trailrunner on July 31, 2021, 03:43:48 PM
I've just come across the issue that I think could've been the reason for me not progressing this before...

In an example about the rally phase,  the rules state that an MMC must add 1 to its die roll because its an MMC but also reduce the roll by 1 because it's in a building....but I cannot see in the TEM section in the rules any mention of a die roll modifier for any terrain

It's also not mentioned in any part of the really phase...so I don't know what modifiers are in place when it comes to terrain

You have to add one to any self-rally attempt.  Even leaders have to do this.   Rule 3.1.e.

You can subtract 1 for rally attempts in buildings or woods. Rule 3.1.f.

I’m out of town right now so I don’t have the SK terrain chart with me.
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: judgedredd on July 31, 2021, 03:49:32 PM
Thank you. See what I did was read the example before I finished reading the really Phase!!!

Thank you very much
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: Bison on July 31, 2021, 05:54:13 PM
I have a couple of shelves of ASL materials. I want to pre-order Rising Sun but the price is a bit ridiculous and I am having a hard time justifying it.
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: bob48 on July 31, 2021, 06:04:50 PM
So, does anyone have any stories of notable scenario's played?
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: DoubleDeuce on July 31, 2021, 09:15:19 PM
I have a couple of shelves of ASL materials. I want to pre-order Rising Sun but the price is a bit ridiculous and I am having a hard time justifying it.

I'm having the same thoughts, but with 'The Forgotten War'. MMP wants $141.00 but pretty sure I can get it for a little less than $100.00.
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: bayonetbrant on July 31, 2021, 09:27:37 PM
I'll have to go back and get some pictures of the Wall of ASL from The Gamer's Armory

See attached
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: judgedredd on August 01, 2021, 03:14:37 AM
So disclaimer - I haven't finished the rules yet.

The bit in the manual that explains the layout of MMC counters mentions the class of unit E being elite

In the first mission,  I notice that two of the German units have an E in a circle

What does that mean?

I've also just noticed on the actual counters that some have a square around the E also.

This may be in the rules, but it's not under the section that discussed the layout of the MMCs
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: trailrunner on August 01, 2021, 06:54:52 AM
The E does denote elite units. The box doesn’t mean anything. Some countries have different types of elite units, and a box, circle, or nothing is used to denote them.  If non-elite troops use certain weapons they suffer penalties. For example, the breakdown number of a flamethrower is reduced by two if used by a non elite unit.

The first scenario is only infantry, so I don’t think the elite status affects anything.
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: judgedredd on August 01, 2021, 09:43:44 AM
Thanks. I just wondered what the difference was
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: bayonetbrant on August 03, 2021, 01:19:03 PM
well, the "Wall of ASL" photos sure got a lot of fans chattering on FB about them


Also, there's a 3rd-party HASL module that Gamer's Armory is taking pre-orders on right now that's going to be HUGE.  We talk about it some in here
https://www.armchairdragoons.com/news/its-the-news-tuesdaynewsday-8-3-21/
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: bob48 on August 03, 2021, 01:49:14 PM
Pity it didn't get some more people talking about it here.
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: judgedredd on August 03, 2021, 03:02:39 PM
I'll probably have plenty of chat - once I read the rules and set the damn thing up.
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: mcguire on August 03, 2021, 03:41:18 PM
Pity it didn't get some more people talking about it here.

Uh,  I like squirrels.

(Sorry, I never got into ASL. I remember wanting to get a copy of Squad Leader, but I couldn't afford it. Now, the ASL monolith scares me.)
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: bbmike on August 03, 2021, 03:42:01 PM
I discovered this while looking at the video JD posted in his WaW85 thread. Looks like a good way to learn the game:

Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: trailrunner on August 03, 2021, 05:03:55 PM
Yeah, I watched the Russ Gifford videos when I first started. Neal Ullen also made a series last year that’s pretty good. IDJester also has some videos. But be careful - I notice a few errors here and there in many of these.  Nobody is perfect, but it confuse people trying to learn.

The best resource I found when I was learning was Jay Richardson’s tutorials. He has one for each of the first three SKs. I highly recommend them. They are easy to find on BGG and elsewhere.

On Discord and VASL, Stew has been holding sessions called Tactical Tuesdays, starting at 8 or 9pm Eastern time. These are interactive sessions for SK players where he usually goes through a game that’s previously been played by replaying the log file.  I think this link will get you on his Discord channel:

https://discord.gg/dEjdBYu2

Here is another Discord channel:

https://discord.gg/KcNfK7uN
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: thecommandtent on August 03, 2021, 07:50:05 PM
Yeah, I watched the Russ Gifford videos when I first started. Neal Ullen also made a series last year that’s pretty good. IDJester also has some videos. But be careful - I notice a few errors here and there in many of these.  Nobody is perfect, but it confuse people trying to learn.

The best resource I found when I was learning was Jay Richardson’s tutorials. He has one for each of the first three SKs. I highly recommend them. They are easy to find on BGG and elsewhere.

On Discord and VASL, Stew has been holding sessions called Tactical Tuesdays, starting at 8 or 9pm Eastern time. These are interactive sessions for SK players where he usually goes through a game that’s previously been played by replaying the log file.  I think this link will get you on his Discord channel:

https://discord.gg/dEjdBYu2

Here is another Discord channel:

https://discord.gg/KcNfK7uN

I discovered this while looking at the video JD posted in his WaW85 thread. Looks like a good way to learn the game:



Thanks for this info. I've got SK1 sitting around here somewhere. I tried learning it a year or two ago but it just didn't click. Maybe one of these resources would help.
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: judgedredd on August 05, 2021, 08:33:11 AM
I've done it again. I've flip flopped off the game. Decided I wanted to play something I had played before and really wanted to play again - WaW '85.

So - sorry...nothing to see here (from me and further questions)

it's also those counters - they are so, so small. And with further module additions getting even more info on them, I couldn't see that this would be a series I would look to invest in. And I do like to invest in game "series" because you have the rules down pat and can hit the ground runing (probably why alot of ASL players keep on trucking).

Anyway - soz...but WaW '85 is calling. Keep up the good promotional work trailrunner  :bigthumb:
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: Bison on August 05, 2021, 09:03:13 AM
The counters are the same between the SK series and ASL. The subscripts and the like are used but a counter from SK is the exact same as those used in ASL. You do had additional counters for new equipment or units but again they read the same.

Anyway as with all gaming endeavors if a game is not fun or compelling to play then its time to move on to something that is enjoyable. I also agree with the focus on a series and do the same.
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: trailrunner on August 05, 2021, 09:30:10 AM
A common area of discussion for ASL players is how to store your kit.  For counters, I like Hozan containers.  The dividers can be moved, so if my needs change, I can re-arrange.  Each box holds 4 trays, so I can mix and match and only take what I need for game day.  For the most part, the OOB of one country fits into one box, sometimes with room to stare for other countries or special markers.  They are pretty easy to transport.  I use a label maker to make my labels.  The only downside to them is that the bins are just a bit small for my fingers, but that is easily solved with tweezers, and they are not cheap.  Raaco is another popular storage choice, but they can hard to find in the US and can also be expensive.  A lot of people use bead organizers, which you can get a crafts stores and is pretty cheap.

(http://i.imgur.com/wBeurKR.jpg) (https://imgur.com/wBeurKR)

(http://i.imgur.com/SQsNclC.jpg) (https://imgur.com/SQsNclC)

(http://i.imgur.com/jTzr5k0.jpg) (https://imgur.com/jTzr5k0)
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: bayonetbrant on August 05, 2021, 09:48:13 AM
Trailrunner,

What (if anything) do you do with the boxes / packaging for the games once you file away the counters (and maps?) into consolidated storage?

Do you try to make note of where they came from to be able to re-assemble each boxed set separately?  Or are you just not worried about the co-mingling at this point?
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: trailrunner on August 05, 2021, 10:55:47 AM
Trailrunner,

What (if anything) do you do with the boxes / packaging for the games once you file away the counters (and maps?) into consolidated storage?

Do you try to make note of where they came from to be able to re-assemble each boxed set separately?  Or are you just not worried about the co-mingling at this point?

Good question.

Initially I tried to keep track of which modules the counters and maps came from, but I finally gave up.  It seemed hopeless and pointless.  If I really wanted to sort it out in the future, there are counter scans that I could use to reverse engineer all my modules, but I've told my wife that when I die, she should just sell it as a lot for $1k or something.  However, I have kept my SK stuff separate from the full ASL modules.

I keep the boxes on a shelf in my war room.  I keep some of the leftover stuff in the boxes, but not much.   Next time I'm upstairs I'll take a photo of my ASL wall.  I scan all the scenario cards, and then place the original cards in sleeves and store them in a 3 ring binder.  I like having electronic copies, but when I'm browsing for a scenario I like to page through hard copies.  There is a nice search feature on the ASL Scenario Archive website that allows you to search for whatever features you want, but I still like looking through my notebook.

The modules almost always come with some rules pages, some of which are errata, some of which are vehicle and gun notes, and some of which are specific to that module.  For a while, I'd integrate those into my master rules notebook, but when MMP published an electronic rulebook earlier this year, it was a huge step forward.  Not only is the electronic version convenient and searchable, I don't have to keep track of the various errata pages and vehicle and gun notes.  The rulebook does not yet have all the specialized modules, but it has a lot and is a great solution for everyday play.
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: judgedredd on August 05, 2021, 11:33:54 AM
The counters are the same between the SK series and ASL. The subscripts and the like are used but a counter from SK is the exact same as those used in ASL. You do had additional counters for new equipment or units but again they read the same.

Anyway as with all gaming endeavors if a game is not fun or compelling to play then its time to move on to something that is enjoyable. I also agree with the focus on a series and do the same.
What's the SK series?
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: trailrunner on August 05, 2021, 11:40:39 AM
The counters are the same between the SK series and ASL. The subscripts and the like are used but a counter from SK is the exact same as those used in ASL. You do had additional counters for new equipment or units but again they read the same.

Anyway as with all gaming endeavors if a game is not fun or compelling to play then its time to move on to something that is enjoyable. I also agree with the focus on a series and do the same.
What's the SK series?

SK = Starter Kit.  Four modules so far (1-4), plus a couple of expansion packs and one historical module (Decision at Elst).
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: bayonetbrant on August 05, 2021, 11:40:57 AM
What's the SK series?


Starter Kit
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: Bison on August 05, 2021, 12:54:52 PM
My SK counters are in the gmt trays but my asl is still sadly in baggies. Trail runners setup is epic!
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: Barthheart on August 05, 2021, 01:07:46 PM
Nothing wrong with baggies. All of may original Squad Leader and expansions are in baggies… irrevocable mixed.
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: Bison on August 05, 2021, 01:26:54 PM
Of course my mixed counters have been properly trimmed to have rounded corners. :)

The biggest issue is the loss of ease of pulling specific counters quickly. The biggest benefit is it all still fits into their boxes. A couple of boxes are holding counters and another stores my maps boards. I think if I was able to more regularly play the game I’d sort the counters.
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: bbmike on August 05, 2021, 01:29:35 PM
My SK counters are in the gmt trays but my asl is still sadly in baggies. Trail runners setup is epic!

Trailrunner's picture is impressive. This picture on BGG is epic:  ;D

(https://cf.geekdo-images.com/1Mua36YgQtBwCHRhCRp7lA__imagepage/img/OMOZND9es1DDeRQ8TcjnbngQdH4=/fit-in/900x600/filters:no_upscale():strip_icc()/pic1700084.jpg)
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: Bison on August 05, 2021, 01:31:52 PM
Glorious!
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: Barthheart on August 05, 2021, 03:03:34 PM
Of course my mixed counters have been properly trimmed to have rounded corners. :)
….

 :face:
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: bayonetbrant on August 18, 2021, 09:55:47 PM
So how much do the SK's actually nerf back from the main rules?  Are they the equivalent of what the 'original' SL game was compared to ASL?  Or are they some other subset of the game?

Is there enough support around the SK's that they can stand alone as their own game system without taking the full ASL plunge?
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: Bison on August 18, 2021, 10:52:59 PM
Yes the SK series can stand on its own as a game system. The comprehensive rulebook after four sets is like 30 pages or so. It is a significantly trimmed back ruleset. There are also two expansion packs, a historical campaign, and two small 4 scenario bonus packs. I am not sure how many total scenarios there are but enough that local tourneys also support SK events. I hope MMP produces some more historical campaign packs without adding more rules bloat.

I like the full ASL game but SK is without question much more streamlined and easy to learn/teach.
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: trailrunner on August 19, 2021, 06:38:23 AM
By my count, there are 93 SK scenarios from MMP, and a few other scenarios from other publishers.  MMP just released a bonus pack so they are continuing to support SK.

The SK game system definitely stands on its own.  I like to say it is 80 percent of the fun of the full game requiring only 50 percent of the rules.  Those aren't exact, numbers but you get the idea.  I know plenty of people who only intend to play SK.  If they play one scenario a month, that's something like 8 years.  I also know some players who only want to play infantry-only scenarios.  More power to them.

The big concepts missing from SK are bypass movement, snipers, multi-level buildings, and concealment in all scenarios (in SK, concealment is only in PTO).  There are some other important things missing, such as MG fire lanes, berserk units, heroes, deployment, and lots of other rules that are used less often.  Most of the key concepts are in SK, such as the phases (including defensive fire), the to hit process, and breaking, routing, and rallying.  Moving from SK to the full game isn't too hard.  IMO the difficulty is learning a new set of exceptions, but that's the way ASL is.

By my count, I've played at least 1/3 of the SK scenarios face to face, and 1/2 if not 2/3 of the scenarios solo.  When I first started I had played all the SK scenarios from SK 1-3 at least solo, but I haven't kept up with all the expansion and bonus packs.  There are some very good scenarios in SK that have stood the test of time.
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: bob48 on August 19, 2021, 06:48:23 AM
The sheer number and variety of available scenario's must, I assume, be one of the features that has fuelled  ASL for so many years?
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: trailrunner on August 19, 2021, 06:49:00 AM
Here is the end game of the SK scenario I played last weekend.  The scenario came from the latest bonus pack, and recreated a raid by British commandos on a Kriegsmarine HQ to capture documents a few weeks after D Day.  The game came down to the last die roll of the last turn and was tense until the end.


Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: trailrunner on August 19, 2021, 06:55:40 AM
The sheer number and variety of available scenario's must, I assume, be one of the features that has fuelled  ASL for so many years?

Definitely.  It adds lots of variety.  There are something like a thousand scenarios for the full game, each with a story.  Playing one a week would take 40 years to play them all.
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: Bison on August 19, 2021, 11:12:58 AM
By my count, there are 93 SK scenarios from MMP, and a few other scenarios from other publishers.  MMP just released a bonus pack so they are continuing to support SK.

I did not realize there where that many scenarios. The lack of multistory buildings is the one rule I miss from full ASL to SK but it does streamline line of sight and combat rulings.
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: Rekim on August 19, 2021, 10:04:56 PM
The upcoming PROKHOROVKA HASL from 3rd party publisher Advancing Fire includes some love for SK players. Only a couple of SK scenarios are included, but should be enticing for players planning to move on to full ASL at some point.

http://advancingfire.com/index.php/prokho
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: bayonetbrant on August 19, 2021, 10:11:56 PM
The upcoming PROKHOROVKA HASL from 3rd party publisher Advancing Fire includes some love for SK players. Only a couple of SK scenarios are included, but should be enticing for players planning to move on to full ASL at some point.

http://advancingfire.com/index.php/prokho

we had that in Tuesday Newsday 2 weeks ago
https://www.armchairdragoons.com/news/its-the-news-tuesdaynewsday-8-3-21/
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: Bison on August 20, 2021, 08:28:34 AM
The upcoming PROKHOROVKA HASL from 3rd party publisher Advancing Fire includes some love for SK players. Only a couple of SK scenarios are included, but should be enticing for players planning to move on to full ASL at some point.

http://advancingfire.com/index.php/prokho

Thanks for sharing!
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: Rekim on February 05, 2022, 05:48:31 AM
Some quick pics of the newest addition to the collection. My preorder of Hollow Legions has arrived. Hollow Legions is an updated re-release of the long out of print ASL core module with the Italian order of battle. 

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/pw/AM-JKLW8Kk1b9263s5NrP8T_mGlFOKk6_ILx5-kpXpBWzTZ2GlgTUtg2syPCFk5yCc2r30JHYhJkytZ-tQrPUHKvErw32BWExtAitAGZOxG0Gi8eh8J0LehF64SZ_BcvWRADHWfsfwPFb1BgYAtwVClkkxu-=w706-h865-no?authuser=0)

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/pw/AM-JKLX4whq7zqGGparp0m5YhyzDeUnkE2LX3ysAdvH2QbbQGZsqk_FofsM7xiY5Or6Wi22QehyE2WAejoZAPPZx0yNOcZDbQ0XoQT8VifN22AYDlUmzRZzOkczwTZ-xeV5wNfhcEZEfXcfg6iQdnOr3ZgE7=w487-h865-no?authuser=0)

Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: Rekim on February 05, 2022, 05:54:02 AM
The box art for the latest edition of ASL modules from MMP is fantastic IMO

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/pw/AM-JKLU5iXdM5KsSMBXJcBknV-ECyA9EfNMK-Z33o7LHiVHxPUJI33Nlg4V3hPyOPjjGhBvNT5ym2vbfGQ9OF0ds-5DoT-UbZwaR3-QfXMUox0KHlVT22aQLxhe6CJvYTkg3fdG0eR9PmT8oV7Fe3CgZAFXO=w487-h865-no?authuser=0)

The 3rd edition of Hollow Legions now includes all of the kit for desert settings.

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/pw/AM-JKLW1bD6-F7PJT7aw1gaTIt8QJSi_1TspALHJzwgmZBEgAJUgi1y7gDSm5d-Px4z4ZQFwQoS3FAMEoQuf7s4YGw9uqF3qrcOSiw2zRR7zxGMMItiYjhv-EMpWm4JpixD_InVUy2Chs1s61IQrlN2O_ekQ=w1045-h555-no?authuser=0)
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: judgedredd on February 05, 2022, 07:58:55 AM
It's always nice to see new stuff
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: bayonetbrant on February 05, 2022, 09:33:32 AM
sweet!
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: bayonetbrant on February 05, 2022, 09:34:01 AM
what are some of the key unique things that the Italians bring to the table?

Units / weapons / special rules / etc?
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: trailrunner on February 05, 2022, 04:00:00 PM
what are some of the key unique things that the Italians bring to the table?

Units / weapons / special rules / etc?

Low firepower, low morale.  They generally have to pay lax penalties.  I don't remember anything noteworthy about their weapons or vehicles.

Hollow Legions also has Ethiopians and Eritrean troops.  The special rules in Hollow Legions are the desert rules, which I have not yet attempted.

Hollow Legions also came with a ton of scenarios.

Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: bayonetbrant on February 08, 2022, 05:12:22 PM
there's some ASL news in today's Newsday, with updates to the pocket bundle of rules, as well as some official scenario releases
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: bayonetbrant on May 24, 2022, 04:34:59 PM
https://www.armchairdragoons.com/articles/reviews/unbox/unboxingday-deluxe-asl-by-multi-man-publishing/
Title: Re: FOCUS ON.....Advanced Squad Leader (ASL)
Post by: Rekim on May 26, 2022, 04:41:44 AM
I do enjoy Deluxe ASL, but prefer a big scenario over a big map.

While on the topic of recent ASL releases; earlier this month MMP started shipping their latest historical module Sword and Fire: Manila. I've avoided ordering a copy myself, but hear it is a beast with six 24” x 37” maps. Super interesting subject mater too. I'm sure to cave on this one at some point.

(https://mmpgamers.com/bmz_cache/p/products-asl-sfmjpg.image.263x335.jpg)

Just this week MMP announced the reprint of Hakkaa Päälle, the Finish core module for ASL, and opened it up for preorders. If you've ever wanted to do battle with aerosani's this is probably the only place you'll get some.

(https://mmpgamers.com/bmz_cache/p/products-asl-hpjpg.image.263x334.jpg)

(https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/b/b2/Finnish_military_snowmobile.jpg)