GMT’s “At Any Cost: Metz 1870” – Errata, Clarifications and FAQ – Version 1.00

Fred Manzo July 14, 2018 0
GMT’s “At Any Cost: Metz 1870” – Errata, Clarifications and FAQ – Version 1.00


Terrain Effects Chart                                                                                                                                     The TEC Indicates the shifts as “<-1” and “<-2” for Slope and Steep Slope hexsides respectively. The correct shifts are “<-2” for assaulting up a Slope hexside and “<-3” for assaulting up a Steep Slope hexside (per the rulebook).

The Prussian CIC chit should be removed from the cup after the Deep Night turn in the Campaign scenarios.

The XII Horse Artillery should be deployed at setup on the map. Remove the extra Horse Artillery unit listed with the XII Corps reinforcements.

The Prussian CIC Chit starts in the cup. The Prussian Guard Corps activation chit should also start the scenario already in the cup.

The Comprehensive Example of Play seems to have omitted the “Odds” modifiers for the Assault Combats that were included. This is in error and an oversight on my part (though I’m not sure how that happened exactly!). In any case, those examples should include the “Odds” column shift where applicable, though the end result could still be the same for the purposes of the example. The “Odds” shown are the minimum odds required to get the indicated modifier. So anything short of reaching the
indicated odds will be resolved using the next lower shift. So for example, an attack of 5 SP against 6 SP is a 1:2 attack. You would need to at least 6 SP to get the 1:1 and by the same token, you would need at least 9 SP to get the 3:2 ratio. Of course, there needs to be at least 12 SP to get 2:1. Thereby, an attack of 11 SP against 6 SP is only 3:2. An attack of 6 SP attacking 6 SP is 1:1 odds, and no modifier applies. But 5 SP attacking 6 SP is considered to be 1:2 odds and a “<-1” column shift apples. The same goes for 4 SP and 3 SP attacking 6 SP. If a unit has “0” SP, the odds are automatically the maximum (3:1+).

In the “A Day of Battle” scenario (and by extension, both Campaign scenarios), the Prussian III Corps Horse Artillery is missing from the reinforcement schedules. The unit should arrive at 11:00 with the “C” group of reinforcements.

The Victory Point Tracks on the Campaign Scenario cards are both missing the “6” box. Sorry for the inconvenience. There are a myriad of solutions and I have simply resorted to placing the marker on the border between the “5” and “7” boxes.

The Fire Combat Results Table column shift labeled “French Infantry and Mitrailleuse Firing” should probably say “French Infantry or Mitrailleuse Firing”. The “1->” column shift applies to either unit firing alone or even if they are combined together into one fire.

The French player does pick the actual path for the “aggressive” Prussian unit, but the target of the attack can only be those French units that are within the two-hex trigger range. In the case of cavalry, the selected path has to be he shortest route (to avoid exploitation of the great movement distance) but it does not necessarily have to be the “safest” of multiple, equally-short paths. If there are multiple paths that qualify, the French player still chooses the actual shortest path used.

A Road/Clear hex is also a legal hex against which a normal Cavalry Charge can be conducted.

In the case of multiple chargers, the first Cavalry unit that successfully charges is automatically the Lead Assault Hex.

Add: “The Cavalry unit may not be adjacent to any other enemy Combat Unit at the start of the move. It may start adjacent to an enemy HQ unit or, in the case of Opportunity Charges only, the intended target of the charge.”

The second sentence in rule 8.1 should say: “Fire Combat is voluntary and can only be conducted by active units during the Fire Combat Step, Engaged units issuing Defensive Fire during the enemy’s Movement Step, or any unit using an Event Chit allowing such fire.

Add: “Remove all Command Event markers from the associated scenario tracks and return them to the pool of available Event Chits for the next turn.”

The Out Of Command Chits placed on the map go back into the pile of available OOC Chits after each activation. So all will be available for drawing with the next activation if needed.

1. Charging Cavalry units become “Disorganized” only once, even when they subsequently conduct a
Breakthrough Move. The effect is applied after the Breakthrough Move.

2. Hasty Works and Entrenchment markers change the base TCR value of protected units. In addition, their effects are applied cumulatively with any terrain effects.

3. The “Metz Escape Table” is actually the table shown in the rulebook – there is not a separate table

4. When conducting the “Escape from Metz” procedure, only one formation per turn may make the attempt
via die roll. The first sentence after the table should probably more accurately say “A formation that
makes a successful die roll ….”

5. When Reinforcements are scheduled to enter the game, they are placed on the map only when their
Activation Chit is drawn and their placement on the map is the beginning of their normal activation.

6. The “stack” of a parent Artillery unit and its associated Mitrailleuse unit is treated as one unit.

7. A Cavalry Division (for example, Rheinbaben’s 5 th Cavalry Division formation) is a qualified “division” for purposes of the CIC chit requirements. So if activated by the CIC chit, all elements of the Cavalry Division can be activated, including the Division’s HQ unit.

8. Horse Artillery units are treated as normal Artillery units for all purposes other than the ability to Fire ½ and Move ½ in the same activation.

9. An SP of “C” represents cadre strength and is treated as an SP of “.5”.

10. Column shifts are calculated in their entirety and then the net shift is applied to the table. Results to the left of the “C” column of the CRTs are treated as “no effect”.

11. When applying multiple terrain effects on any combat, use only the single most beneficial terrain for the defender’s hex and, if applicable, the single most detrimental terrain in the attacker’s hex.

12. The markers with the hex numbers on them are used only for the Campaign scenarios to determine
where the Prussian reinforcements are scheduled to arrive.

Q. The rules say infantry detachments that are eliminated by breaking are returned to the generic pool of detachment units and not placed in the “Units Eliminated” box and therefore cannot be rebuilt. What about the parent unit that was taken off the board earlier and replaced by the detached units? Is the parent unit now considered permanently eliminated, or can it be rebuilt?
A. The parent unit can be rebuilt using other Detachments on the map, if there are any. They do not
necessarily have to be the same ones (that is only done to avoid extra bookkeeping). Otherwise, the parent is gone
as well.

Q. Cavalry units cannot charge if they start their activation next to an enemy unit, but is there any limit on how FAR they can charge? Doesn’t appear to be, which seems bit odd given the scale of 500 yards to the hex. That would allow a light cavalry unit to charge up to 7 hexes, or over two miles, which seems quite a lot — could units really (or would they) charge that far?
A. Cavalry charges are limited only by their movement allowance. But don’t forget – they must meet a
number of criteria to conduct the charge and meeting all those over the entire distance is tough. Secondly, the cavalry is not actually galloping that whole time – only really at the very end. Thirdly, also don’t forget that the turn is an hour long – so a lot can happen in that span of time. And lastly, yes – von Bredow’s Deathride actually covered about 3000 yards in total! No – not charging the whole time, but they were advancing at the enemy with the intention of charging when they got to within a few hundred yards.

Q. The Prussians have three units – A, B, and C Detachments from the III Corps, that start the “The Afternoon Crisis” scenario in a Low Ammo Status. The note for those units says that they have no HQ. If they have no HQ, does that mean that in the rally step, they will not be able to get their Low Ammo status removed and they play the whole game in that status?
A. That’s correct – these units are hanging by a thread.

Q. In the “Twilight of the Guards” scenario – are the Prussian XIIth Corps units that start on the map Out of Command until their HQ arrives?
A. Yes – the Out of Command XII Corps units that are on the map are each activated during the OOC Phase only. Since the XII HQ is off map, they remain as such each turn the Corps chit is drawn. If you need to move them, use the CIC chit.

Q. If I use the CIC chit to activate units whose HQ is not on the map, are they treated as OOC or can they activate normally?
A. They can activate normally – all units activated by the CIC Chit are automatically In Command.

Q. Can several detachments of the same corps be treated as a grouped division for CIC activation, assuming they’re close enough together?
A. They cannot. See this rule note under the CIC section: “Note that Corps-level units and Infantry
Detachments cannot be part of a Grouped Division but one such unit can be individually activated with this chit.

Q. A retreat can trigger defensive fire, but can a unit under an assault marker fire at an enemy unit which is retreating from another assault?
A. Actually, a unit with an Assault marker can still issue Defensive Fire at a passing retreating enemy. The marker indicates who the unit is committed to assaulting, but it does not freeze them from firing – don’t forget that these are one-hour turns and a lot can happen in that span of time. Also, allowing Defensive Fire in this situation awards players for sequencing their attacks properly.

Q. With a retreating unit that has been defensively fired on, are any retreats cumulative? For example, if a unit had select to retreat two hexes from an assault loss would a retreat inflicted by defensive fire in the first hex now be a retreat of two hexes from there? Also if artillery unit retreats then on a subsequent chit have an enemy unit move next to it, it can still defensive fire, correct?
A. Yes, retreats are cumulative…. so original distance plus any Defensive/Opportunity Fire-mandated
retreats are added on. And yes – artillery can still Defensive Fire normally after a retreat.

Q. Can a retreat trigger an opportunity charge, as would a normal move?
A. No Opportunity Charges are allowed on retreating units – they can only be conducted during an
opponent’s Movement Phase.

Q. A unit goes from Fresh to Battleworn (or flipped). If it takes a third hit, must it do a Break Test or is it put into the eliminated pile? If you took three hits, you could Retreat, flip a Fresh to Battleworn and take a Morale Hit?
A. Battleworn units are never automatically eliminated with a Casualty Hit – they must take a Break Test to find out what happens to them. Nothing may happen if they pass well enough – they may have to retreat – or they may, in fact, be eliminated. And yes – the three Loss Points could be applied as you describe.

Q. Can Artillery and Mitrailleuse units join in an assault? If so, are they half strength?
A. Nope – Artillery and Mitrailleuse units are not eligible to Assault.

Q. What happens when Artillery is attacked and stacked by itself? Does it get some sort of Defensive Fire and then does it defend with its fire factor or just get overrun? That is the way Artillery gets handled in most tactical games.
A. Artillery alone gets its Defensive Fire normally (as canister). In Assault, they defend with their normal SP but the attacking enemy gets a huge beneficial shift for attacking lone artillery.

Q. As I read the rules on stacking, the only units that cannot stack together are Fresh infantry brigade-size units. I read that to mean I can have 2 Cavalry units in a hex (rule 4.1) or a Fresh infantry brigade and a cavalry unit in a hex (again 4.1). Which begs this question, if I have two cavalry units stacked in a hex and wish to conduct a cavalry charge, does that violate the 4th bullet in rule 11.6. I am starting the charge stacked with a friendly unit, but does harging together constitute passing thru a hex containing a combat unit?
A. Cavalry Charges are conducted “by unit”. Each one is announced and tested for. In any case, a charging cavalry unit may not enter a space with another friendly unit, even if that friendly unit charged earlier in the phase. You’d need to have the stacked Cavalry unit do its own charge test and have it take a different route to the target. And in the case of multiple chargers, the first one that successfully charges is the Lead Assault Hex.

Q. Can I take an Event Chit and interrupt another Event Chit? Example: French artillery fires, Prussian plays Krupp Guns then French plays Beaten Zone. Which would resolve in reverse order: BZ, KG and the French artillery.
A. You can only interrupt another Event if it’s not doing the same action. In other words, French artillery
announces a fire and at that point it must be resolved first. Then you could play the Krupp’s Guns and resolve it and then you could play the BZ and resolve it (presumably you are doing so with an infantry/mitrailleuse unit). If you wanted to avoid that French artillery fire, you would announce the Krupps shot before the French Artillery conducts its fire. Now – you could do something like play a Prussian Auftragstaktik chit and start moving … at which point you could interrupt that movement with a Beaten Zone shot.

Q. Does defensive/opportunity fire forbid charges and assaults if a MH or a CH is inflicted? It is indicated that it ends any move, is an assault considered a move in this case or can a unit that just received a MH/CH due to defensive fire still assault in the assault step?
A. Right – Defensive Fire and Opportunity Fire can halt actual movement of an enemy unit, but if that
enemy unit is already adjacent to your unit it can still conduct an eligible assault combat (but obviously that unit may not want to assault anymore if it becomes Shaken/Disrupted or takes casualties from that fire).

Q. Is non-standard activation (most notably by CIC chit) a “full” activation : hence, can a unit activated this way build hasty works, use rally actions in the rally step etc. or is it restricted in any way (e.g. can only move and fight).
A. The CIC activation is a normal activation, can be in either Posture and the selected units are always In
Command. So yes – any eligible actions can be conducted per the chosen Posture.

Q. Must an assault be composed only of units of the same corps? If an enemy unit is surrounded by units of several corps, can the non-phasing units add their SPs to this fight? If yes, how is it managed in terms of activation (i.e. if the units of the other corps have not yet been activated or have already acted what happens?)
A. Actually, an Assault Combat can only be conducted by “active” units (which are therefore from the same Corps or Division). So passive adjacent friendly units cannot participate ….. but they could still issue eligible Opportunity/Defensive Fire at an assaulted enemy unit should that unit retreat past them.

Q. If an artillery fires outside of the fire combat step (e.g. defensive fire) does it receive the “artillery fired” marker and associated movement restriction? The rule does say “during the fire combat step” but it seems weird that it is ok to fire as long as the unit is not currently activated.
A. No marker is applied for artillery firing other than when they activate. That marker is only used to
indicate that the artillery unit is ineligible to conduct any movement later in the same turn’s Movement Phase (Horse Artillery can do half and half). So artillery fire issued at other times during the turn will not affect that unit’s future movement and thus no marker is needed.

Q. Assuming the answer to the above question is yes, what happens if the unit defensive-fires after having been activated and moved? Is the “artillery fired” marker kept for the next move in the next turn or is it removed in housekeeping phase and therefore “free” (in terms of movement) to defensive-fire an artillery that already moved earlier in the turn?
A. See above.

Q. Do Roads ignore the movement penalty of any hexside, even slopes and steep slopes?
A. Yes – Roads negate all terrain penalties. But be very aware of the stacking restrictions! They are always in effect while moving along a road, so sequencing (i.e., road march discipline) is very important.

Q. Just to clarify Road Rate, can the unit moving that has used Road rate in prior hexes, move through a stacked hex using the terrain cost and then switch back again?
A. Yes indeed!

Q. Can the Bazaine CIC chit be used on a division of a corps affected by the Bazaine’s Malaise chit?
A. Yes – the CIC chit can be used on any division, regardless of the Malaise chit. The Bazaine’s Malaise only affects the Corp’s normal activation.

Q. Just started the “Twilight of the Guards” Scenario. Under the scenario rules, it says that French HQ’s may only deploy in Defensive mode. How can the French attack since they may not use Assault combat in that mode. How do they attack aside from fire combat?
A. Ah, but that’s exactly what’s intended! The French are in their chosen “position magnifique” and while almost all wargamers will want to counterattack at every opportunity, the French did not do that except at a couple of occasions. Now – you can still attack with a French Division using a CIC chit and you can counterattack freely with the Imperial Guard (if it arrives).

Q. I’ve also been playing “Twilight of the Guards” and a question came up following an “enhance the next chit” result from the Fortunes of War chit. The next chit was the XII Prussian Corps, whose three units are considered Out of Command. Can those units now be considered In Command for that activation only, since the XII corps is currently considered “enhanced”? Or do you ignore that effect for Out of Command units?
A. The “normal rules and procedures” still apply with this result. So the units would still need to be In
Command to warrant the benefits of the Enhanced Fortunes of War Chit.

Q. Another question about event chits, this time the “Feu de bataillon”. The way I read this, the chit, once placed on a corps HQ, stays on the HQ for the entire turn and becomes active AND STAYS ACTIVE once the corps’ activation chit comes into play. That would explain why the corps’ units get a one-column defensive benefit when they’re fired on, in addition to the offensive benefit they get when firing, whether during a corps activation or through the use of an event chit like Beaten Zone. Am I reading that right?
A. Correct – in fact, the chit is active as soon as it is placed on the HQ! So if you activate it through a CIC or if it gets fired upon or if you use an Event Chit (like Beaten Zone, for instance), all units within Command Range of that HQ will get the beneficial shift. This replicates the units hunkering down, using cover and taking careful aim – at the cost of mobility.

Q. For the Prussian Aggressive Tactics chit – when the Prussian unit moves – is it subject to Defensive Fire?
A. Yes – the Prussians will still get blasted by Defensive Fire.

Q. For Horse Artillery, do they use the Cavalry MP cost or the Artillery MP cost.
A. Horse Artillery is a subset of Artillery, so they would use the “Artillery” costs.

Q. Can GSP units recombine like detachments in 17.3?
A. No – those are permanently separate units.

Q. Can you explain what the Cloud of Skirmishers chit is simulating? The 6 hex range and can see over hills has me a bit confused. Thanks.
A. Yes – it is what the chit indicates … an abstract way to represent all the skirmishers that were all over
the battlefield. Much of this effect is included in the regular fire combat calculations and also can represent a historical reason or cause for some of the extreme die rolls (either way). The use of the chit simply is a way to show the focused effects of a rather large screen of skirmishers. In order to simulate their very loose order and the fact that they would normally deploy sometimes hundreds of yards ahead of the main body, this chit is used (rather than adding a page of skirmisher rules and extra counters). Note that the difference between the French and Prussian skirmisher chits are due to the different weapon’s effective ranges.

Q. Two of the three event chits that allow Opportunity Fire are ‘play immediately or hold’ chits. How can the Cloud of Skirmishers and Beaten Zone chits be played immediately when they are drawn if they are opportunity fire chits? I understand how the Krupp’s Gun chit can be played immediately by using the Artillery Charge Option but not how the other two chits can be played immediately. The other player is not currently moving and per rule ‘11.5 Opportunity Fire’ these chits can only be played after an enemy unit’s action is announced. What am I missing?

A. Opportunity Fire can be played at any time …. “even” during an enemy movement (not exclusively
during enemy movement). So “A Cloud of Skirmishers” is pulled for the French, you take the chit and then say – “Wait! Before you pull the next chit, I’m using the skirmishers to fire on that Prussian unit”. Discard the chit and resolve the fire. Or…. you could hold the chit, let the Prussians activate a unit and do some movement, and when that unit wanders into range of your skirmishers you yell “Hold it! I’m firing at that unit with my skirmishers”.

Q. A question about the CIC French chit. The French must “pay” event chits on one turn and then pass a die roll test in order to get the CIC chit, that’s understood. But he only gets it for one turn (the turn after he has paid the chits and successfully rolled the die), not for the rest of the game? Am I right? And a comment about the “Prussian Aggressive tactics” chit: it is deadly and, if properly used, can destroy a Prussian brigade each turn. When the French plays it, he chooses a Prussian unit meeting the required conditions and moves it adjacent to any French unit(s) or stack(s), not specifically the one(s) that was two hexes away and triggered the event ? Am I right ? So you can bring a cavalry unit close to the Prussian lines to create the conditions, then play the chit and send the chosen Prussian unit against any French unit(s) with Chassepot rifles, Mitrailleuse and artillery waiting!
A. Correct – the French CIC chit is only earned that one turn you “paid” for it. It is a constant drain on the French player to get his added flexibility. Correct again …. and very clever! Of course, the Prussians can invest chits as well to avoid the aggressive chit play and it can also backfire on the French in many cases. It’s not always the obvious thing to try and do – the French player can actually cause himself some problems by doing this in the wrong situation. But yes, your baiting strategy would work but I imagine the circumstances and situation for that to happen optimally are fairly rare.

Q. When moving next to an artillery unit stacked with a Mitrailleuse, is the defensive fire done for the artillery and Mitrailleuse separately, or for the combined strength points?
A. Artillery and the accompanying Mitrailleuse are treated as one unit for all purposes other than fire
combat. So, when they issue defensive fire it is done separately (because different modifiers apply). In the case of a Morale Hit marker, like Shaken, that marker is applied separately to each unit when firing. So each gets a “-1 SP” when calculating fire. This is done for simplicity … I didn’t want players keeping markers under each unit separately and have a huge pile grow.

Q. Additionally when the stacked artillery and Mitrailleuse have a morale condition (say Shaken’) do they both lose 1 SP or does the stack as a whole lose a SP?
A. The largest SP unit gets the hit (remembering that the Artillery + Mitrailleuse are added together as one SP total). If the artillery gets the hit, both the artillery and its Mitrailleuse marker are flipped over to their BW side.

Q. Just to clarify that a cavalry unit intending to charge must declare it in the very beginning before any movement and that all the requirements for the charge should apply at the start (LOS etc). So basically a unit cannot start moving and declare a charge at some point. In addition, I would like to clarify: Is the breakthrough movement mandatory after an assault? After a successful charge? In the rules it says attacking units may do so but a cavalry charge example presents it as a must
A. Correct – the Cavalry Charge is part of movement and must be declared at the start of the unit’s move.
The Breakthrough Move into the vacated hex is mandatory – the cavalry may continue one more hex if it
maintains/reduces the distance to the defeated enemy.

Q. But the breakthrough after an assault is not mandatory, is it?
A. Not for infantry or non-Charging cavalry. They can stay in the hex they attacked from if they wish.
Charging Cavalry must enter the defeated unit’s hex and then may, if it wishes, continue on to another hex.

Q. Under a “Lull in the Action”, do reinforcements planned for the turn still enter normally when the relevant Chit is drawn? Or their entry is transferred to the next turn?
A. Because the reinforcements are still technically activated, they would be placed on the map as per the
reinforcement placement rules (in or adjacent to the designated hex). But then they would be restricted to a Defensive Posture and only Fire Combat.

Q. I’m just learning the game, and I just pulled the Prussian Gen. Staff counter. There is a detachment with low ammo, and it’s disrupted to boot. Please let me know what I am doing…If I activate that unit with the GS counter, I then move it its full MA. Can I then rally it in the rally phase of its activation? This is the Afternoon Crisis scenario and the unit is the C Detachment of III Korps, it does not have an HQ. If it is allowed to rally, how many recoveries can it undertake? Just one, none? Rethinking my situation… Since there is no III Korps HQ, there can be no Recovery. True?
A. They cannot Rally as they cannot be within Command Range of their HQ, which is a prerequisite. This is why the scenario has the word “crisis” in it. Units that are activated by CIC Chit are automatically In Command (regardless of HQ status or location) for activation purposes. So they can otherwise do what they want but no Rally.

Q. if a stream ends (actually begins) in a hex must the stream movement cost be paid?
A. Yes, any Stream graphic in the hex is a stream.

Q. A question about detachments and stacking. When stacked with cavalry they count as 1 of the 2 allowed units in a stack correct?
A. Yes – they are regular units for stacking purposes. The proper use of Infantry Detachments is another
one of those “hidden” tactics in the game. When I play the Prussians, I almost always (depending on how the battle is developing) break down a brigade or two. They obviously help cover the necessary frontage to match the French forces but they can also be sent on penetration missions around the French flanks, threatening the auto-victory towns and forcing the French to respond.

Q. If a unit is retreated in an assault phase and the hex it retreated into is then attacked in the same assault phase, how is the retreated unit considered? Does it count in defense, does it suffer any additional penalty if the second attack is successful, etc.?
A. No special rules, the unit is in the hex and can defend normally (don’t forget – these are 1-hour turns).

Q. Since a detachment unit is always deployed in a BW state, when it receives a casualty hit does it flip over to its other BW side and then take a break test? Rule 8.5 says a fresh unit flips to its BW side but an already BW unit just makes a break test.
A. Detachments are already on their BW side, so they simply take a Break Test immediately on their
current … no further flipping is needed. it’s just another Infantry Detachment unit in a different denomination. When you break down, you create as many Detachments in whatever denominations you need. Each “side” is actually a different Infantry Detachment unit – they are all BW units and never need to flip.

Q. Does moving an HQ unit into a hex with a friendly unit in it, adjacent to an enemy combat unit trigger defensive fire against this stack, or only if it is a combat unit moving into the hex with an existing friendly unit in it?                                                                                                                                                           A. I should have clarified that only a combat unit triggers Defensive Fire. So no – an HQ could move next to an enemy (but with other friendly units in the hex) and not trigger the fire. Note that a lone HQ unit may not by itself make an Engagement move, as it would be immediately eliminated in that situation.

Game Resources:

At Any Cost: Metz 1870 BGG page

At Any Cost: Metz 1870 GMT Home Page

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