Tas wrote:That would let me, for example, have poor to average Commanders for the Romans, with high crew factors to represent their hand to hand skill, while Carthaginians have more skilled ledaers with more average crew - is that right? My tactical system then takes care of the battlefield effets of this.
The basic rules include bonuses for qualities for several Napoleonic factions which you could use as the basis for your background (so the British generally get better crews - and so get a bonus to crew quality rolls at the start of campaigns, and an imrpoved rate of quality advance, wheras the French simply get bigger crews for equivelant vessels),
Officers are a bit more random, but fundamentally it's a big chart of abilities, with poor abilities tending to be towards the bottom of the chart - so it could possibly be re-written, or you could use a bonus/penalty/reroll mechanism to swing the results a little if you want,
Tas wrote:Not being familiar with the VBAm system, could I please have a brief overview to ensure its the sort of system I'm after? Is it hex based?
Yes - it is hex based.
There's a sample map in the free Caribean supplement, which might give you some idea of the scope and scale.
Essentially each turn you roll for weather conditions and calculate income, and then each side writes down orders for the following:
- Fleet movement and orders (close or distant blockades, avoid/pursue combat, land troops, etc)
- Construction and requisitioning
- Intrigue (spying, sabotage, etc - possibly also diplomacy if you are playing empires rather than theatre commanders)
Then you simply follow the turn sequence, performing each activity as it comes up. Combat is dealt with by generating "encounters" (deep-sea encounters tend to occur only by random chance even if cohabiting the same hex, other encounters will occur according to the will and orders of the participants) - and then playing out any generated encounters using either the built-in system (the CSCR), or the tactical system of your choosing (Hoist the Signal, Fire as She Bears, etc in which case the type of encounter (deep sea, coastal, blockade breakout, etc) is the "scenario" for your game),
Ground combat (including landings, and land movement) are handled in a more simplistic way, but there's enough meat to give you some options,
Each turn represents one month of game-time, and the system is modular enough that you can ditch elements or write in your own rules with a certain amount of ease,