Rule of Averages

December 20th, 2008

This covers the ‘Rule of Averages’ when using large numbers of Troops.  The first part of the rule is averaging out the attributes over an entire unit so all the Troopers of that unit have the same attribute values. This makes keeping records much easier. The second part of the rule is that all the test results of the unit can be averaged too. This is designed to help manage super massive groups, armies consisting of thousands of Troopers, all fighting in Tactical. It can be used, and does turn up, in the other spheres too and that’s why it here under ‘common’ game mechanics.

RULES: To average test results for an entire unit first determine the averaged modified attribute value of the Troopers within a unit. Work out their chance of success, and then apply those odds to all those who can take the action chosen within the unit, and who’s variables for the action are the same. Any fractions are rounded down.

Example: If an individual has a shooting hit rate of 30% then they hit 30% of the time (nice and simple). If this individual is part of a group and the ‘Rule of Averages’ is applied, and after doing so the hit rate averages out over the entire group to (say) 26%: then the hit rate for the entire group is now 26%.

To apply to the unit consisting of 100 Troopers who are in a line formation and who are ordered to fire, with an average of 26% hit rate, simply take the percentage of 26% an apply it. With 100 Troopers this would result in 26 hits (on average). No rolls to hit are needed.

If this 100 Trooper unit was in a block formation 10×10 and directly facing the enemy and order to fire, only the fount rank could fire of 10 Troopers. This would average out as 26%, or 2.6 hits rounded down to 2. Considering the numbers are quite small the Player may decide to dump the second part of the Rule of Averages and roll tests for each of the 10 Troopers. The unit could have the front rank kneel and allow the second rank to fire, driving the number of hits up using averaging to 5.2 rounded down to 5, which doesn’t seem that bad and the Player may take it.

The rule is applied as the player sees fit, there is no mandatory need for it, though the ‘larger the group’ the quicker the results delivered by the Rule of Averages. If 1,000 Troopers open fire with a 26% hit average we can instantly tell that they inflict 260 hits. It gets a little slower when not using nice whole numbers, such as 740 Troopers open fire with 26% average gives 192.4 hits or rounding down 192. However when dealing with these massive numbers there is a considerable time saving compared to rolling dice. Rolling 1,000 dice is never quick! Working out 26% or 740 on a calculator (or if you are gifted – in your head) is still far quicker then rolling 740 dice.

Generally this rule kicks in during Tactical battle games, with the first part of Rule of Average applied to the Trooper’s attributes within a unit. In smaller confrontations in the Tactical sphere the players may choose to roll if there are 20 or so Troopers, but once the numbers rise to 50 or more the second part of the rule kicks in and the Players may choose to average  the hits instead (with these huge numbers it hardly matters what the remainers are).

Category: Prototype Rules Page

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