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The Miniatures War College
Advenio paratus. Egressus melior paratus.
D&D Miniatures strategy and analysis.

May 3, 2005

Odds and Evens

Consider the following situation. Your poor old Gauth is about to get smashed by a Frenzied bezerker who has just finished off your thaskor, who did finish off another Bezerker. However, your opponent wisely (?) moved a wolf between the gauth and the beserker so that the closest target is a wolf. Time has also been called and 5 points won't win you the game. What is an LE trickster to do?

The player should do what any committed LE player does, exploit the counter intuitive but internally consistent rules. The rule we will exploit here is the odd/even diagonal rule, where the first and every odd normal diagonal counts one and the second and even diagonal count as two. Basically diagonals count as 1 and a half, rounding down, like everything in skirmish does. The strange effect is that you get two line "bands" where the distance is the same, even though "as the crow flies" one is further than the next. The trick is to make these two line bands overlap in one line a piece so that being one square back makes you just as close as a figure diagonal from you.

To illustrate this, I will draw some charts showing the distance between the squares the targets occupy and each square. Here is the distance chart for the Wolf.
5432111
54321-1
5432111
6543222
6544333

Here is a chart for the Frenzied.
7654322
6543211
654321-
6543211
7654322

Now when we superimpose them, we see that there are some distances that are exactly the same:
7/56/45/34/23/13/13/1
6/55/44/33/22/11/-1
6/55/44/33/22/11-/1
654321/21/2
7/66/55/4432/32/3

So if we move the gauth two squares down he can target the Frenzied or the Wolf. At least by the "counting squares method."

So as a player how do you keep from being surprised by odds and evens? Either line up your blocker even with the protected piece, line up the blocker two squares in front of the protected piece, or use two blockers. If the CG player would have done any one of these then they would have. Instead the LE player used rules to create a surprising win.

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