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Battlefront WWII
Some ideas for building your own Prototype cards



There are so many different types of equipment available in World War II that we will undoubtedly miss some. This page is designed to help you "build your own"

Artillery

While there are many types of artillery pieces that do not have cards and/or are not listed in our rulebook, it is fairly easy to extrapolate our ratings to give reasonable factors for any gun that might be encountered.

Indirect Fire Ratings

Calibervs Vvs T,G,sVTemplate size
<=55mm-3-2Small
55mm-65mm-2-1Small
66mm-85mm-10Small
86mm-110mm-10Large
111mm-144mm0+1Large
145mm-179mm+1+2Large
180mm-210mm+2+3Large
12-13" Naval guns+3+4Large
14-16" Naval guns+4+5Large
75mm-155mm Rockets0+1Large or 2 Large
156mm-210mm Rockets+1+2Large or 2 Large

On board artillery

Most towed-artillery should have CC:0 vs V, +1 vs T, sV. Towed artillery can never initiate close combat.
For direct fire factors, look up guns with similar ratings and interpolate. Remember that the bigger guns have a slow rate of fire and are not designed for direct fire, so factors should be rounded down. Here are some samples. Range bands are 5/10/20/40. Beyond 40 they would use IDF:
Calibervs Vvs T,G,sVModel
<=70mm+2/+1/0/-1+3/+2/+1/0It 65/17 (IT-21)
<=75-90mm+2/+1/0/-1+3/+2/+1/0US 75mm Pack Howitzer (US-35)
<=91-120mm+3/+2/+1/0+4/+3/+2/+1US 105mm Howitzer (US-P20)
<=120mm-175mm+5/+3/+2/+1+5/+4/+3/+2German 15cm infantry gun (GE-39)
For larger guns, you should reduce the V strength, as low rates of fire would balance out bigger shells.
For really huge guns (Thor mortars and the like), limit them to only IDF, as they would be almost useless except at fixed targets. Some of these might only be able to fire once in every 2-3 turns.

Aircraft-by Mark Hayes

In the course of checking the ratings for the Desert and Far East & Pacific Supplements I did some reverse engineering and came up with a system for rating aircraft for BF. There is still some subjectivity, but it seems to fit the published cards.

Bombing

Bombing ratings based on maximum bomb load:
Bomb Loadvs Vvs TG
2000 lbs+3+4
1000 lbs+2+3
500 lbs or less+1+2
Dive bombers have the same bombing rating vs. V as vs. TG

Tank Busting

Tank busting ratings are for rocket-firing aircraft and those with large purpose-built guns.
Generally 37mm or 40mm guns are a +4 and anything larger (or two guns) is a +5.
Some subjective consideration must be given to the effectiveness of the platform when compared to the published cards (ie. Is it more like a JU-87G or an IL-2m3?).

Strafing

Vs V, the caliber of the weapons is most important
Calibervs V
.303, 7.9mm, 7.7mm, etc.0
.50 cal., 12.7mm+1
20mm+2
Anything bigger is in the tank busting category
Vs TG, the number of automatic weapons
Numbervs TG
1-20
3-6+1
6 or more+2

Armor

Armor ratings are a bit subjective. The question you should ask yourself is, "What modifier should this aircraft give, relative to others, to get the plane to the release point and make the attack?" There may be a host of factors that come into play when answering this question, but as we are concerned with the attack run, maneuverability isn't one of them. Armor ratings can vary from 1-4
Vs TG, the number of automatic weapons
RatingExplanation
0Little or no armor, slow speed; many early war aircraft
1Some armor for engine and cockpit; most attack aircraft at start of war
2Armor for engine and cockpit; good speed; most fighter bombers
3Exceptional rugged ground attack aircraft; only a few should have this rating

Crew Ratings

Aircrew ratings should reflect doctrine as well as individual pilot skill. So, while U.S. 8th Air Force pilots might normally be thought of as VET in the Fall of 1944, the lack of priority given to close air support and the practice of rotating pilots home after a certain number of missions would probably mean that U.S. CAS would rarely be better than EXP. On the other hand, VVS Sturmovick aircrews might get an EXP rating even with a little experience because of their determination to deliver the "goods" regardless of the flak (nevertheless, their lack of skill would almost never make them VET).

Andy's Aircraft

Andy Parkes used Mark's guidelines to calculate the values for many WW2 Aircraft

Infantry Units

If you want to create your own prototype infantry units, here are some guidelines.

vs Armored Vehicles

Infantry is not very effective against armored vehicles unless armed with some sort of anti-tank weapon.

Anti-tank Rifles

At the beginning of the war, the only hand-held ranged AT weapons issued were usually anti-tank rifles, which were just large caliber rifles, with projectiles usually from 13mm - 20mm in diameter. While unable to destroy heavy armor, these weapons were used throughout the war, and could be surprisingly effective. The Russians and Finns had good ones. In his memoir, Otto Carius, a German Tiger Tank Ace, says that he hated them. While no danger to the crew of his Tiger behind the thick armor, a lucky shot could hit vital equipment, possibly causing a radiator or oil leak that could even disable the vehicle. Because they were operated by only a 1-2 man crew, they could operate from ambush and were usually not worth the effort of hunting down.

Shaped Charged Weapons

The discovery of the effectiveness of shape charges led to the development of weapons like the bazooka and Panzerfaust, which could burn through several inches of armor. While short range, these weapons made unaccompanied armored vehicles extremely vulnerable.

Infantry Ranged strengths vs V

The following strengths are based on rifle armed infantry armed with various sorts of AT weapons. The 'No AT' lines are the effect of the personal weapons themselves, which are unable to destroy armored vehicles by themselves.
If you give a stand one of the AT weapons, use the greater of the two strengths at each range band. For example, a rifle unit (-1/-2/-3) armed with a PIAT (+3/0) would have a ranged fire strength of +3/0/-3.
Type 0-2 2-5 5-10 10-20
NO AT (Rifle) -1 -2 -3 -
NO AT (SMG) -1 -3 -3 -
NO AT (Team-FO/Cmd/etc.) -2 -3 - -
Boys ATR +1 0 - -
Solothurn ATR +2 +1 -1 -3
Lahti ATR
PTRD ATR
+2 +1 -1 -2
PIAT/Bazooka +3 0 - -
Panzerfaust +4 -2 - -
Panzerschreck +4 +2 - -

Close Combat

Close combat strengths vs V are much more subjective. Infantry were able to use anti-tank grenades and satchel charges. Sometimes magnetic charges and flamethrowers were available.
Basic infantry CC strengths
Squad (Rifle/SMG)+1
Crew or Team0
To this base strength, you can add +1->+3 based on specialized equipment or training.

vs Troops and Guns

Infantry is rated against troops and guns according number of bullets it can put down range. Automatic and semi-automatic weapons are better at this than the standard bolt-action rifle, but the rifle does have better range than submachineguns. Here are our recommendations for firepower at different ranges:
Type0-22-55-10
Pistols and bolt action rifles
This type of unit might be found in partisan or other local militia forces
+1-1-3
Bolt Action Rifles with no automatic weapons
Surprisingly, few nations fielded infantry without automatic support of some kind.
Some of the Italian infantry, and the Communinst Chinese are among the few examples.
+10-3
Bolt Action Rifles + single Automatic rifle or clip-fed LMG with a small magazine.
This is the most common infantry configuration.
+20-2
(Semi-Auto Rifle + BAR-US) or (Bolt Action Rifles + good clip-fed LMG-British/Commonwealth)+2+1-2
Bolt Action + Belt-fed LMG+2+1-1
Assault Rifle+Belt-fed LMG (German Late war para)
Multiple LMG or AR
+2+2-1
SMG +2/-1+2-1(-3)
Teams and Scouts+10-
Sample Infantry Close Combat strengths vs TG
Teams+1
Infantry+2
SMG/Commando+3

vs Aircraft

Basic troop units are almost worthless against attacking aircraft. However, firing your rifles into the air is worth a -2 for most squads, and a -3 for teams. Almost no infantry units should have a -1.

Vehicles and Guns

The general guideline here is to find a unit that is similar to what you want and use the strengths from that unit. Note also that we have covered most of the common vehicles/guns used, and it is quite possible that you will find what you need. The minor powers very often purchased their equipment from the major powers rather than manufacturing it themselves.

In Conclusion

I hope that the above guidelines will help you construct whatever you need. If you decide to deploy the Freedonian Imperial Guard (Freedonia is the mythical country ruled by Groucho Marx in "Duck Soup"), you should have the wherewithal to do so. Seriously, if you develop an historical army for one of the minor powers that we have not covered, feel free to take some pictures and we can add them to our prototype list.

This page was last updated on 10/28/2013 at 08:57AM

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