"FULL METAL JACKET POTATO"                                                                   

Rules For Small Unit Actions In Vietnam (1963-75)                                                            (C)PRM 18/08/1998


(1.0) INTRODUCTION:-                                                  

               These rules are intended for use with 54mm/ 1-35th scale figures at a 1:1 ratio (with a variable ground scale approx. = fig. scale). The key factor is the player's CE (=combat efficiency, i.e. how good and WILLING they are to do their job - even so-called veterans get tired/scared, especially near their 365th day.........).                                                            



               Each player character (PC) is allocated card IDs at the start = their CE rating. Suggested CE ratings are 1 (poor) through 6 (elite). It is when these cards appear (in a random sequence) that the players dictate their actions (no need to write orders). They also receive a number (1+1average dice?) of 'firing burst' counters to denote use of ammo; each firing attempt uses 1x 'burst' counter.

EXAMPLE: a figure with a CE of 5 is dealt/allocated card IDs :-

5[Diamonds],  J[Clubs],  3[Hearts],  8[Hearts], and 9[Spades].

This means that whenever these particular cards appear, that PC  (and/or any NPCs under his command) may perform one action. If other PC's have the same card, the one with the highest CE has the option of going first (if CE equal, dice for it).



               Each turn, the 'action' pack/sub-set is shuffled and set face-down. The top card is then turned-over and any/all figures with this as one of their ID cards may now do 'something' (move, take aim, fire etc); highest CE always goes first, roll 1d6 in the event of a tie. At the end of a turn, all PCs are dealt new cards up to their CE.



               All actions cost 1x card. Sometimes the VALUE of the card is important (affects the %chance of success), but at other times it is a 'token' of effort/time spent doing something (such as 'aiming').

               - MOVE: 'normal advance': card value x1 paces; minimum value = CE

                              'double time': minimum value = 2x CE; take 1x 'puffed' marker

                              (NOTE: 'doubling' is not just about distance covered; it's also harder to be hit.......)

               - Rest: (removes 2x 'puffed' markers);

               - Issue order to NPC(s); see {4.1}, below

               - Change weapon: (swap current weapon/selection)

               - Remove/insert ammo/stoppage: (1x mag or 1x round, as app.); belt-fed MG's require a roll of 1d6                                      less/equal to CE level to reload - may take some time! Roll for 'bursts' when reloaded.

               - Give 1st aid: (see section 7.0)

               - Change position: (swap wpns or climb low wall, open a door, leave APC etc)

               - Aim weapon: One 'aiming' marker per phase aimed (up to CE level); NOT AT ALL if  any  'puffed'                                         markers present, or figure moved/forced to 'duck' etc.

               - Fire one 'burst'; use 1x card as basic %hit chance.


- (4.1) NPC ORDERS are issued by playing 1x (or more) card(s) per NPC, then rolling 1d10 LESS THAN the total value of cards laid for each NPC (JQK=10, i.e. almost automatic.......).


(5.0) FIRING:-

               PCs wishing to fire must have 1x 'burst counter' remaining (=ammo) and at least one 'action' card left to play. The basic % chance to hit = <total card values> x CE. If using 'normal' (unaimed) fire, players may only use one card. If AIMING, add 1 to CE per 'aim point'. If attempting to engage multiple targets, players should nominate the targets & allocate cards accordingly (cannot 'split' values)................

               # AREA FIRE: against unseen enemy (at window etc.) - total all %, then divide by 10

               # If the FIRER is under fire                                            - DEDUCT (1average dice x10%)

               # If the FIRER is 'puffed'                                                - DEDUCT (10% per 'puffed' marker)

               # If the FIRER or TARGET has moved this turn          - DEDUCT (1average dice x10%)

               # If the TARGET disappeared during the phase            - DEDUCT (% of move when hidden)

               # To SWITCH to another target                                     - REDUCE HIT%  by (10% per 10M)

               # COVER: soft = target CE;   hard = (1 or 2average dice) + target CE; deduct <score> x10%

                              (CE reflects better USE of available cover, based on experience)


               # Adjust by random amount                                            - (+/- difference of 2average dice x10%)


               # Finally, check for effect of RANGE BANDS; different WEAPON MODIFIERS


- (5.1) WEAPON TABLE               RANGE / EFFECT (in brackets)               

                                                            Close                    Medium                              Long

M16, AK47, FN-FAL etc.              0-25       (x2)        25-100                 100+      (x0.5)

LMG (M60 etc.)                                             0-50       (x2)        50-100  (x3)        100+      -1x if from hip

Older Rifles (M1, SKS etc.)          0-10                      10-25                    25+        (x0.5)                                                 

SMG (M3, Thompson)                   0-10       (x2)        10-25                    25-50     (x0.5)/L

Pistol                                                 0-10                      10-25     (-2)/L     25-50     (-1average dice x10)/L

Shotgun               : combat/pump-action     0-25       (x2)        25-50                    50-100  (x0.5)/L



               When a final % number is reached, round-off to nearest 10%. Now roll 1d10 LESS THAN /EQUAL  to this figure to 'hit' once; if successful, DEDUCT this score from the %chance and roll again against the new figure. Keep doing this until the total rolled exceeds the remaining %chance (remember to deduct for switching targets).        

EXAMPLE:        A total score of 85% becomes 8 'hit points'. The player rolls 1d10 and scores 3 - one hit, with                                    (8-3 = 5) points still remaining. Player rolls again, getting 1 - another hit, (5-1 = 4) points still                                    left. He now decides to switch targets (having previously announced a 'sweep') to another                                             figure 20M away. After deducting 1HPt per 10M, there are (4-2 = 2) hit points left; a roll of 7                                   = a miss and (2-7 = 0) points left.



               To represent the effects of 'suppressive' fire, some hits may remove cards from a players' 'hand', either temporarily or permanently reducing their ability to act. When their CE level reaches zero, then they are effectively out of the game (although the figure stays on, just in case a rescue attempt is made.......)

               # Low Velocity: For each 'LV' hit on a PC figure, draw 1x card - if Greater than/Equal to current                                           CE, lose  1x CE (permanently). Adjust for flak-jackets etc.

               # High Velocity: For each 'HV' hit, PERMANENTLY reduce the PC's  CE level by (1average dice).



               #BLAST EFFECT: Each fig. in radius/arc draws (n)cards; reduce CE as above. DEDUCT from no. of        cards to draw if prone, using cover, flak-jackets etc. as appropriate.

                              Hand grenades                                 (Radius = 2average dice"); all draw 1average dice cards

                              Artillery, mortars, mines                            (Radius = ??); all draw 2average dice

                              RPGs, Claymore mines                 (Arc = 90 ); all draw (2average dice - range)

                              'Shotgun Round': (M79/M203)    (Spread = 20% range); all draw 2average dice -4(10-25), -6(25-50)

               #BOOBY TRAPS:  (Rad.?); draw 1d6-1; N.B. Some traps (punji stakes etc.) may only cause 1x hit

               #THROWN (object): If (card+CE) is Greater than/Equal to (target CE+range)+/-(random), hits =                          difference (max. 1 target figure!). Calculate results as per 'Blast Effect'.


(6.0) MORALE:-

               There is no separate 'morale' test required, as the PC's are all 'committed' to the fight - it's just that they get tired/scared from time to time, which is reflected by the number of cards held (= activity level).


(7.0) MEDIC!

               It may be possible to 'salvage' certain PC's who have lost all their CE by prompt medical action or 1st aid (even seriously wounded men can be helped/stabilised). For each PC with CE = zero, calculate their 'bleeding time' (BT%) =  2average dice. At the start of each turn, each PC with CE=0:-

# NO MEDIC: PC/umpire draws 1x card; if RED, deduct (1) from BT% (2 for 'face' card J/Q/K). If BT% = 0, the PC is assumed to have bled to death or succombed in some way to their wounds.

# WITH A MEDIC: the 'medic-ing' player draws 1x card and, if BLACK, adds (1) to BT% (2 for J/Q/K).                  N.B. If the BT%  exceeds the wounded PC's original CE, the figure is saved and becomes 'active' once   more, BUT their CE level can only ever be 1.

# UNLUCKY: Any draw of the dreaded 'Ace of spades' is always an immediate KIA!!

# Any PC 'saving' another in this way can add (1) to their own CE - so much for altruism!



               Each player rolls (1average dice)+ current CE; add 2 for pistol, reach etc. Check also for surprise, position.........

Highest takes 1x 'puffed' marker (for effort); Lowest takes PM = diff., AND loses 1x CE; if PM exceeds current CE, figure is assumed to be KO'd.

               SURPRISE: use 1x card; roll 1d10 greater than face value to succeed (in which case target immediately takes 1+1average dice PM's (allows guards to be taken roughly from behind - if you see what I mean.....). Must be capable of surprising the target (i.e. sudden appearance, from the rear/above etc.)


(9.0) RANDOM EVENTS:-??????

               Generate 1x random event if  'joker' dealt: SNIPER,  CIVILLIAN,  INCOMING, RADIO MSG etc.etc.