Monkeys With Guns: Basics

I’m still primarily working on Monkeys With Guns, mainly organizing playtests and writing up the campaign (I’m going with the Macaca Expanse). In order to have something to feed the blog while I do so, I’m dropping the first draft rules one bit at a time.

Scale

Monkeys With Guns is designed to work either with 28mm minis (or anything else with a base that’s 25mm or 30mm, both within a rounding error of one inch across) or else on a grid. There is no facing, so it can be a hex grid, in which case every hex equals one inch, or it can be a square grid, in which case when moving diagonally every second square counts double. Thus, moving two squares diagonally takes three squares of movement, and moving one square diagonally, one square to the side, and then another square diagonally takes a total of four squares of movement. Since I seriously doubt anybody’s rushing out to buy 100+ monkey miniatures for this game, the default assumption is that you are using tokens on a square grid.

Setup

You will want a 48 square by 72 square board (4×6 feet if you’re using one inch squares) with at least 25% of the board covered by terrain. More terrain is better. You will also want at least three six-sided dice per player. Players typically each take one of the narrow ends of the table and set up their armies within 12 squares of that edge. Certain scenarios might have, for example, one player setting up in the middle with his opponent deploying from both edges, or third or fourth players deploying in the middle of the wide edges of the table, and so on, so see the scenarios section for details.

Some of the terrain will be rough terrain and some of it will be climbable. Determining exactly what counts as rough or climbable terrain is left to players, but should be agreed upon before the match begins. Generally speaking it’s okay to make all terrain potentially climbable, as even terrestrial primates are quite adept climbers and only very smooth surfaces are impossible. If playing with a grid and not with 3D terrain, the height of obstacles must also be determined in advance so that players know how much movement it costs to climb them. By default, all obstacles are one square high and thus cost two squares of movement to climb.

Line of Sight

A monkey getting shot at is not going to continue posing with gun held high in a furious war screech. He is going to contort his tiny monkey body behind cover as fast as he possibly can. If any part of the base or token is concealed by cover, the monkey counts as having cover. If the model (base and miniature) is completely concealed, the monkey cannot be targeted at all. If you’re using tokens and you’re not comfortable determining what counts as total or partial cover on the fly, you should use grid rules and define in advance which terrain provides only partial cover and which provides total cover.

Death and Dismemberment

If a primate fails a morale check to avoid becoming pinned while behind cover, then they are pinned and cannot act on their next turn. At the end of that turn, they are no longer pinned, however they remain vulnerable to being pinned again on a roll of a 2 or 3 from another attack until they have taken at least one turn while not pinned. If a pinned primate is forced out of cover for some reason, they are immediately unpinned.

In a skirmish game, when a primate is wounded or injured, they are laid down on the board for one full round, during which time a primate with medic talents may be able to revive them. At the end of a platoon’s turn, any primates still on the ground are sorted to their respective casualty piles. Routed primates are removed immediately.

In a campaign game, primates who are wounded, injured, routed, or killed are sorted into separate piles. Each of the first three categories rolls 2d6 on a different table to determine what happened. God only knows what happens to the fourth.

Wound Table

Roll Effect
2 Shot straight through the head. Primate is killed, and this result cannot be rerolled with talents or traits.
3 Lung is punctured. Primate is killed.
4 Multiple arteries shot. Primate is killed.
5 Shot through the guts threatens to send the primate into shock. Primate must test morale. On a success, the primate lives, but takes -1 Armor and -2 Morale from lingering injury. On a failure, the primate is killed.
6 Injured arm. Arboreal primate loses 20% movement speed, rounded down. Terrestrial primate loses 10% movement speed, rounded down. All primates take -1 Accuracy.
7 Cracked rib permanently weakens primate. -1 Armor.
8 Injured leg. Terrestrial primate loses 20% movement speed, rounded down. Arboreal primate loses 10% movement speed, rounded down.
9 Injured hand. Arboreal primate loses 10% movement speed, rounded down, and all primates take -1 Accuracy.
10 Injured eye. -1 Accuracy.
11 Painful but shallow wounds leave primate scarred physically and psychologically. -1 Morale.
12 Though primate was stunned by the pain, wound ultimately proves inconsequential. No long term consequences.

Injury Table

Roll Effect
2 Primate’s brains splattered across the ground. Primate is killed, and this result cannot be rerolled with talents or traits.
3 Throat slit. Primate is killed.
4 Partial disembowelment threatens to send primate into shock. Primate must test morale. On a success, the primate lives but takes -1 Armor and -2 Morale from lingering injury. On a failure, the primate is killed.
5 Primate is beaten into a pulp with multiple broken bones. The primate takes -1 Armor, -1 Morale, and loses 10% movement speed.
6 Injured arm. Arboreal primate loses 20% movement speed, rounded down. Terrestrial primate loses 10% movement speed, rounded down. All primates take -1 Accuracy.
7 Cracked rib permanently weakens primate. -1 Armor.
8 Injured leg. Terrestrial primate loses 20% movement speed, rounded down. Arboreal primate loses 10% movement speed, rounded down.
9 Injured hand. Arboreal primate loses 10% movement speed, rounded down, and all primates take -1 Accuracy.
10 Injured eye. -1 Accuracy.
11 The primate’s face is badly and painfully maimed in the fighting. -2 Morale.
12 Painful but shallow wounds leave primate scarred physically and psychologically. -1 Morale.

Rout Table

Roll Effect
2 Primate is caught by stray gunfire while exiting the battlefield. Roll on the wound table.
3 Primate gets lost and wanders into the wilderness, never to return.
4 Primate must test morale. On a success, primate returns to the troop. On a failure, primate is too scared to return and deserts.
5 Primate must test morale. On a success, primate returns to the troop, terrified but intact, with -2 Morale. On a failure, primate is too scared to return and deserts.
6 Primate regroups with the troop, disgraced and terrified. -2 Morale.
7 Primate regroups with the troop, disgraced and disgruntled. -1 Morale.
8 Primate caught attempting to desert the troop, who take his stuff and throw him out. Primate is lost, but all gear (including default gear) is returned to the troop.
9 Primate must test morale. On a success, the primate is unshaken by their brush with death. On a failure, they are both shaken and stirred, taking -1 Morale.
10 Primate regroups with the troop unscathed.
11 Primate regroups with the troop unscathed.
12 Primate regroups with the troop unscathed.

 

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