GNW Command & Control Using Black Powder

I love Black Powder.

There I said it.  It’s simple, unpredictable, and it allows you some control while avoiding auto movement and god-like vision.

If you fail your command roll, it covers all the unknowns of war, drunkenness, fatigue, confusion, smoke, fear, language differences, unseen terrain problems.

So it’s awesome and simple.

But it’s gap is that you have brigadiers and you have an army commander.  Problem with that is most armies in the BP era had brigades under a divisional leader, under a wing commander/commander of foot or horse, then an army commander.

So two levels of command are missed out.

If you chuck them in as extra army commanders then you minimise the chances of not moving, meaning all that glorious uncertainty and confusion of the era is lost.

Directly talking about the GNW, look at the Swedish army. You had Charles, then commanders under him like Lewenhaupt commanding horse/foot/columns etc, then divisions containing brigades.

FOUR layers of command.

My plan is to do the following to address this…..

1. Brigadiers act as they do under the main rules.

2. Brigades will be under a divisional/ commander, or a wing/task/column commander.

3. Above that will be the senior commanders controlling wings/foot or horse etc.

4. An army commander acting as in the core rules.

So the issue is the two new layers of command which I’m proposing to give the following rules:

– Divisional/Wing commanders can give rally, follow me orders as under the normal rules.

– They CANNOT give group orders.  That is the job of their subordinates.

– They CAN however do a new INTERVENE order.  IF one of their sub-leaders fails an order, they can, if within 12″, pass a command roll, move to that leader, and re-roll the same order using their OWN command rating.   The intervene order must be the last order they give. They must then stay with that leader in the move leaders phase, so just as historically, to get the job done, they might have to advance into the hornets nest.

So rather than making it ridiculous by allowing two new levels of command to control large groups, I’m proposing to allow then to directly intervene at unit level to steady the line/rally etc, and also to ride over and demand to know what the f*** is going on and why are you not advancing on that hill sir?

I’m considering making rules for leaders getting killed slightly more likely.  I’m considering adding that if a commander is obliged to move due to an enemy unit passing through him, not only does the have to find a friendly unit within range to move to, but he could be killed in the process if his opponent rolls a 6.

Once I have tested all my mods and stats I will make them available as a pdf on this blog in case others want to use them.

In other news I’ve nearly finished the Russian commanders (30 figures of totally beautiful Pendraken LoA commanders in tricorne) and I’ll be posting photos of them soon 🙂

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A nice idea, I look forward to seeing how it plays out and your PDF