I bought this game sometime ago but when i discovered PDF in my PC about week ago i decided we shouldgive Platoon Leader a chance.
SL:PL is one of the wargaming rules series from lesser known Legionnary games, while other games are ground or space combat on much higher scale (Battalion/Division) the humble platoon leader was designed for Platoon/Company ground combat.
As always rules are nicely written and lot of photos of various miniatures,diagrams and tutorials how certain rules works. The rulebook is dividend into seven sections – basic infantry combat,advanced infantry combat,vehicle rules,optional rules, training scenarios, army/unit construction rules and apendix containing stat cards, markers and QRS.
SL:PL pits reinforced platoons or companies againts each other in ground battles of tommorow, but game could be used for WW2 or Modern wargaming. Game itself uses alternative activation systém. So player activate his unit perform actions with it and then his oponent activate his unit. The lowest element is team but you must activate whole squad and teams from this squad perform action simultaneously. Every Team on his stat card have motivation rating this is number of actions it can perform durning actiovation, the team can perform different actions than other teams from his squad. this number however can drop if they are pinned down or even broken . the squad can perform number of actions ranging from move to armoured assault where it is activated with near vehicle which provide extra protection againts enemy fire. Another action worth to mention is Overwatch, unit can go on overwatch anytime durning its activation and he then transfer his remaing actions to overwatch. That means if unit have 3 action he use one action to move behind building and then perform Overwatch and then he will have 2 overwatch actions which he can use to react on enemy actions.
Combat itself is very intuitive. Every unit have experience statistic marked in die, most units will use D6. If unit shoots or fight in close combat, owning player must roll experience roll and the he will roll dice printed on datacard for every weapon shooting againts target unit, after taking together experience and weapon die, player must beat target defense here is no brainer systém - if it higher by 1 or 2 target must take pinned Check, by 3 or 4 team member has been injured and render squad less combat effective, if the reset is higher than 4 on team member is KIA. If there is wounded or KIA reset the team must still také pin Check.
Powered Armour infantry are real beasts here more akin to Armour or Starshiptrooper books basicly – walking tanks armed to teeth, they have tough armour and can cut through light infantry with ease.
Vehicle combat is little different than infantry weapons have AT factor which lowers down the damage which is used to beat enemy armour. The more you score than enemy armour value the higher dice you can use on vehicle damage chart. You can destroy vehicle outright or only damage various vehicle systems.
Cover systém is little strange but it work well.
Unlike many systems i saw, leaders in Platoon Leader are Essential because orders they give can turn tide of battle, you can get rerolls for your shooting,boost iniative, rally broken troops or even regroup depleted teams to bring them into combat effective state, and few more. However the orders are issued in secret (marker topside-down next to squad) and before begining of turn. You have two types of leaders integral, these represent squad leader and can issue orders only to his squad, normal leaders represents Platoon, Company or higher leaders and can issue orders to any squad. Every leader have its number of orders he can issue per turn.
Scout troops works little different they didnt Lower cover save or deploy before other troops but to figure out what orders has been issued by enemy leaders and to work out strategy to counter this orders.
When constructing your own teams and units you can give your units lot of equippement and trans, you can create heavy weapon teams with HMG,Mortars,Missle lauchers (RPGs, Fire and Forget missles or Guided munitions), Markerlight teams,Medic teams and many more. Weapons can be many types – gauss,energy based, underslug grenade launchers, slow firing, rapid firing and list goes on. Equipement ranging from Active Camouflage to stimpacks or even some traits like automatons or heroic (never také pinning test) and many more. Same goes for vehicles, you can equip them with various weapons or traits like CRAM, transport capacity, PDS, stealth and so on. There are also various type of armour. Armybuilder is well balanced and can create regular Armies,insurgents or even exotic aliens.
What i didnt like is lack of stand off scenarios and campaing rules but there are lot of scenarios availible online same goes for armylist – few has been created online but you can easily devise your own.
Platoon Leader is solid systém with some nice concepts like Tommorow war this systém is not for everyone, but it have its own fanbase, while lacking its own message forums they can be catched by TMP or 15mm scifi wargaming Facebook group. While this systém is not for everyone i recomend this game.
If your are not decided yet you can try demo rules availible on creator webpage