Officers

Officers are a type of character that are extremely important the effective fielding of an army.

Every unit has an officer, from single squads led by a sergeant to entire armies headed by a general. Each brings their own strength and weaknesses to the role; the nature of an officer can often be ascertained via examining the behavior of those under their command, though rarely as a direct reflection. While most such leaders have a particular specialty or set of tactics they favour, few could be said to lack at least a basic understanding of common military maneuvers.

Officers can be commissioned independently, headhunted from the Imperial Guard, or even recruited from among the rank-and-file. Their origins typically determine their quality, so rarely will a freshly-promoted sergeant display the tactical acumen associated with graduates of the Schola Progenium. That said, education is no substitute for experience: as officers lead their men in combat, they may develop their existing skills or acquire new tactical insight to aid them in future conflict.

Rank

An officer's rank nominally determines what size force they are qualified to command. Though not prohibited from accompanying a smaller contingent than their rank merits, few officers will deign to do so and many will take it as an insult or punishment if given the order. Conversely, an officer given control of a unit above their station (or promoted beyond their competency) may be content, but the soldiers and other officers serving under them may well lack faith in such an under-qualified commander.

There are four broad categories of rank an officer can hold:

  • Non-Commissioned Officer: The lowest ranks, consisting mostly of corporals and sergeants. NCOs are not normally suitable for service as unit or formation leaders, but can fit the bill in dire situations.
  • Company Officer: The first rank of "true" officers, leading the smallest independent groups of soldiers. Capable of acting as both commanders and, however irregularly, strategists.
  • Field Officer: Second in theory but first in general practice, field officers are among those most commonly seen serving as both commanders and strategists.
  • General Officer: Fulfilling a mostly administrative role, general officers rarely set foot on the battlefield unless a conflict reaches significant size. Potential field strategists, but not viable commanders.

Expertise

Expertise is an abstract measure of an officer's tactical acumen and skill, which determines how effective they are while serving in a leadership position. While expertise is theoretically linked to rank, it occasionally happens that a highly-competent officer turns down a promotion to stay with his men — or, more frequently, that an incompetent one achieves new heights on the chain of command.

Expertise Test: To make an expertise test, roll a D6. If the result is equal to or lower than the officer's expertise, the test was successful.

Personality

An officer's personality not only determines their favoured approach to combat but also provides certain benefits, which vary depending on whether they serve in the field or in command. Personalities tend to change only rarely.

Abilities

An officer's abilities allow them to more directly influence the outcome of battles. Abilities may be intrinsic to an officer when hired, or they may be acquired in the course of said officer's career.

Aside from those available to characters, there are three unique types of abilities available only to officers, each active based on certain criteria:

  • Commander: Commander abilities can apply powerful bonuses to certain formation actions, but typically involve an expertise test. Requires the officer to be actively serving as the leader of a formation.
  • Strategist: Strategist abilities provide a modest passive modifier to every formation on the battlefield. Requires the officer to be actively serving as the strategist during a conflict.
  • General: General abilities grant unusual but tangible benefits that apply to every unit under their authority. Requires the officer to have achieved the rank of general or higher.

Multiple abilities can be active at the same time, so long as an officer meets all the requirements. For example, a marshal serving as strategist could use both their strategist and general abilities.

Rank Typical Unit Avg. Exp.
Non-Commissioned Officer
Corporal Team 0
Sergeant Squad 1
Company Officer
Lieutenant Platoon 1
Captain Company 2
Field Officer
Colonel Battalion 2
Brigadier Brigade 3
General Officer
General Division 3
Marshal Corps 4
High Marshal Army 4

Officer Personalities

Unmemorable

An Unmemorable officer uses the following rules:

Commander Ability

What's-His-Name: If this officer is killed while serving as commander, do not apply additional Shock to the formation.

Aggressive

An Aggressive officer uses the following rules:

Commander Ability

Taste for Battle: Make an expertise test when this formation is given Shock during assaults. Success prevents one point of Shock.

Strategist Ability

Close the Distance: All formations gain a modifier equal to half this officer's expertise on the action test to charge or counter-charge.

General Ability

Fiery Negotiator: This general improves the availability on subordinate Military Acquisitions by half their expertise in steps. Does not stack.

Cautious

A Cautious officer uses the following rules:

Commander Ability

Healthy Paranoia: Make an expertise test when this formation activates Overwatch. Success provides a to hit modifier of +1.

Strategist Ability

Vigilance is Key: All formations gain a modifier equal to half this officer's expertise on the action test to enter Overwatch.

General Ability

Always Prepared: This general increases the gear capacity of subordinates by half their expertise. Does not stack.

Efficient

An Efficient officer uses the following rules:

Commander Ability

Controlled Fire: Make an expertise test when this formation shoots. Success prevents the loss of ammo on this attack.

Strategist Ability

Waste No Time: All formations gain a modifier equal to half this officer's expertise on the action test to retain initiative.

General Ability

Quartermaster: This general reduces the upkeep of subordinates by half their expertise, to a minimum of their base upkeep.

Opportunistic

An Opportunistic officer uses the following rules:

Commander Ability

Flanking Maneuver: Make an expertise test when this formation crossfires. Success inflicts an additional point of Shock.

Strategist Ability

Window-Watcher: All formations gains a modifier equal to half this officer's expertise on the action test to double move.

General Ability

Battlefield Vulture: This general provides subordinates a modifier equal to half their expertise on field salvage tests. Does not stack.

Shrewd

A Shrewd officer uses the following rules:

Commander Ability

Turning the Tables: Make an expertise test when this formation is charged. Success grants First Strike for the first round of assault.

Strategist Ability

Rapid Repositioning: All formations gain a modifier equal to half this officer's expertise on the action test to march.

General Ability

Grand Strategy: This general improves the strategy rating of all subordinates by half their expertise. Does not stack.

Unyielding

An Unyielding officer uses the following rules:

Commander Ability

Heads Down, Chin Up: Make an expertise test when this formation takes enemy fire. Success negates all Shock from shooting.

Strategist Ability

No Turning Back: All formations gain a modifier equal to half the officer's expertise on the action test to rally or regroup.

General Ability

We Die Standing: This general increases the morale rating of all subordinates by half their expertise. Does not stack.

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