Saturday, February 28, 2015

Basic Impetvs v1.5

Recently, an update (unofficial?) has been posted on the Impetvs Forum for Basic Impetvs.  While a number of useful changes have been posited, the change of most interest to me is the inclusion of Evasion.  Finally, the topic that our group has debated with every playing has been addressed.  Until now, Evasion has been elusive in Basic Impetvs with many choosing to include their own house rules.  Our group was no exception.

The basics of the Evasion rules are as follows:
  • CL or S units may evade if charged frontally.
  • Not allowed as a reaction to a pursuit move following following melee.
  • Free activation with a full move to rear with no direction change.
  • Move not allowed if path carries the unit over Impassable Terrain or enemy/friendly units locked in melee.
  • Considered an Involuntary Move for Interpenetration
There it is.  Straightforward and easy to implement.  This codifies Evade pretty much the way we gamed. 

Some other noteworthy amendments:
Clarifications for Interpenetration that bifurcates this rule into two classifications: Voluntary and Involuntary.  Makes sense and does clarify some ambiguities from the earlier version.

Charging: If a target evades during a charge, the Charge Move is considered a Normal Move if no contact is made.  No more disordering the charger if the enemy evades.

Movement: Introduces a second movement phase in which a unit moving a second time must pass a Discipline Test.  Failing the test disorders the unit.

Firing Dice Modifiers:  Modifier amendments,
  • (-1) die for each phase moved with the exception that S/FL with javelin may move in one phase only and fire with no penalty.
  • (-2) Firing at S/CL/ART at long range
  • (-1) Firing at S/CL at short range.
  • (+2) Dice for artillery fire against large units or groups in column.  That will hurt pike blocks.  
Skirmishers now will be a little easier to hit at short range.  That will help against annoying enemy skirmish screens.

Cohesion Test: Added to the list of DRMs for Cohesion Tests are:
(+1) if FP except if fired on by artillery
(+1) if fired on at short range
(+2) if fired on at long range

I like these changes.  Now, missile fire does not have the same Cohesion shock as does melee and heavy infantry can hold up a little longer unless targeted by artillery.

Large Unit Depth Bonus: Some CP can now form large units.  Number of additional dice have been modified.  Large units in difficult ground lose depth bonus.  Large units attacked in flank or rear maintain a depth bonus but if the Cohesion Test fails, the unit is routed.  Ouch!

Impetus Bonus: Light cavalry (CL) with an I=0 can charge skirmishers (S), disordered units, or units in flank/rear.  CL may also pursue these same classifications.  No Impetus Bonus for:
  • Troops that are not Fresh, except for Scythed Chariots.
  • Infantry charging Mounted troops.
  • Mounted charging Infantry with Pike or Long Spears, Wagenburg, Elephants.
  • Elephants that charge Skirmishers or non-impetuous Light Infantry.
  • Scythed Chariots that charge non-impetuous Light Infantry.
  • Infantry, except for impetuous Light Infantry, that charge in difficult ground.
  • Mounted that are charging in broken or difficult ground.
  • Infantry that are charging troops that are defending fortifications.
  • Mounted that are charging troops defended by stakes or pavises.
  • Troops charging an occupied Built-Up Area.
Most of the changes align with the new Advanced Impetvs rules.  To see the amendments in their entirety, see:
Basic Impetvs v1.5 Rules

Looking forward to giving these a test in the next game.

One final note about the previous Punic War battle documented in an earlier posting.  That battle, in part, hinged on the breaking of the Roman division on the right.  I ruled that once a division reached the VD break point, all units of the division would disengage and begin a withdrawal to the table edge.

I noticed, however, that the Basic Impetvs website has a heading for Multi Basic Impetvs.  Under Victory Conditions,

4) VICTORY CONDITIONS. Same rules as for Basic set are applied, anyway when a Division looses the 50% of its VD, at the start of its activation all its Units are permanently Disordered (no rally for them).

I should have ruled that a division reaching its break point would disorder all units permanently. That may have prolonged the game but permanently disordered units would begin shedding VBU with every hit.

After a long week for work, I get the pleasure of unwinding with a Saturday game with the guys at Scott's place in Coeur d'Alene.  On the docket today is a Regimental Fire and Fury scenario, Battle of Raymond. Should be fun!  


  1. Interesting, and addresses a longstanding complaint about BI. I will have to try these some day!

    1. Yes, do give BI a try. We have quite enjoyed all of the contests we have held. An elegant system that produces good battles.

  2. I'm not sure about the "second move" feature. I think that it might be a bit too much for Basic . . . at least while we learn it.

    -- Jeff

    1. I am not sure about the value of adding a second move either. I may give it a try, though. Inclusion of Evasion is a big plus.

  3. Thanks for the overview of the changes/updates, Jonathan. In fact, I have no experience with Impetvs, so this has been a bit enlightening.

    1. You are welcome, Dean. BI is an easy slog and free. It works for solo play too so give it a whirl.

  4. Thanks for the info, Jonathan!

  5. Love this article, thanks for posting!