Thursday, January 6, 2011

More Memoir 44 for The Great War: Middle East

HaT's box art for WWI Turkish Infantry
In the last blog of tweaks for converting Memoir 44 rules into a  World War I game, I should have mentioned something rather obvious - the need for small markers (chits, dice, etc) to show unit suppression. The concept of suppression is about the only thing that is outside of normal gameplay for Memoir 44.

Now onto today's subject of differentiating between British/Commonwealth and Ottoman Turkish forces using Great War Memoir.

I think the basic premise is to assume that an infantry unit represents a company or two, meaning a battalion should have 1-4 units, with 2-3 seeming most likely.

The Turks 
I would recommend 2 units of 5 figures to represent a Turk battalion for the early war period, when they employed massed attacks. They are a little more hardy with 5 figures, but they lack maneuverability. 

I think the Turks also should get to re-roll 1 miss in close combat. This could represent their numbers and their front-rank bomb-throwers. 

The British
I would give the British battalions 3 units of 4 figures. 

British Regulars might should merit a chance to re-roll 1 miss in ranged combat, based on their high marksmanship and their Short Magazine Lee-Enfields. I would probably not assign this bonus to the Territorials equipped with the older, longer Lee-Enfields, nor to untried New Army units. 

The ANZACs ought to be tough, but not complete supermen. I'd say they might rate the same as Turks in close combat.

The French
What about the French and their colonial troops? Well, I have a few thoughts on them as well and will review them later on the blog. 


  1. It seems the Turks are penalized twice by having fewer units in a battalion. I get the lack of mobility and the concept works for me in that respect, but then the Turks have fewer total figures in a battalion, which results in fewer "hits" they can take. I think they need to be compensated in some way. Especially as the recurring theme in the Turkish army was to overwhelm the enemy with numbers.

    Also, while researching the subject I stumbled across the story of the 57th Infantry Regiment that made me rethink my opinion of the Turks. In this situation the Turks were uncharacteristically outnumbered, but fought to the last man. They were following an order not so much to attack as to die while buying time. And they followed it to the last man. That's just a quality you don't find in most troops. Maybe it's something to be reserved specifically for that scenario, but something to be considered regardless.

  2. Good points on the subject. I think Kemal's inspiration ought to be a big consideration for any scenarios that take place in his command area on Gallipoli (and elsewhere, I suppose).

    It might be worth boosting them to 12 figs per battalion, like British Regulars and ANZACs, but leaving them at 2 units.