Gear Krieg Frequently Asked Questions

 

Version 1.03
Latest Update: September 4th, 2000
(reformatted November 12th, 2008 and May 2012)

This document is intended to act as a timesaving device by answering 
all those nagging technical questions. If you have a question that is not 
covered by this document, please don't hesitate to ask at
(support@dp9.com). If your question is a common one (or a very good 
one), it may be added to this FAQ to help enlighten the masses. This 
FAQ will be updated on a semi-regular basis. 

This document is Copyright (c)2008 Dream Pod 9, Inc. GEAR KRIEG 
and SILHOUETTE are trademarks of Dream Pod 9, Inc. All Rights 
Reserved. This document may be distributed by anyone to anyone in 
any medium (electronic, hard copy, recited as a mantra) so long as no 
legal tender changes hands and the content is not modified in any way. 
 
 

1) What is Gear Krieg?

Gear Krieg is an alternate history take on World War II, where the 
technology curve is a little more steep than in our own reality. Think 
"Rocketeer meets Saving Private Ryan" and you're pretty close. 
Basically, all the cool pulp tech, such as personal jetpacks, rocket 
fighters and walking tanks, get developed during the course of the war, 
sometimes massively changing events and famous battles (the bad 
guys will still loose at the end, though ^_^). 

2) Is Gear Krieg a pure tabletop game or an hybrid RPG/Tactical Game?

For the moment, GK is being released as a tabletop wargame only. If 
there is enough interest, however, we will do a roleplaying game out of 
it as well (don't forget, our Silhouette engine can handle both!). Express 
interest to your local retailer if you want to see a Gear Krieg RPG. 

3) What is the format of Gear Krieg?

It's a standard-sized hardcover black and white rulebook, with a color
counter plate tack-glued at the back. 

4) What's in the rulebook?

The basic rulebook includes the world background for the first two 
years of the war (1939-1941), the wargaming rules, several dozens of 
vehicles and scenarios, plus basic tables of organizations and 
equipment (TO&E) for Germany, the British Commonwealth, the United 
States, Russia and Japan. 

5) What's coming up next?

The first Theater Book will cover North Africa and include Italian forces 
along with special rules for desert fighting. We're also considering a 
companion handbook with scenario generators, campaign tracking 
guidelines and other advanced rules. Later on, additional books will be 
released to cover the various armies and war theaters in greater detail. 
There should be about four new products per year, every three months 
or so (more if the line becomes really popular). 

6) Will Gear Krieg focus on the ground conflict only?

There will be an aircraft supplement early in 2001 with rules and plane 
stats. Naval battles are not in the current plans, though. Large 
battleships are a bit too "impersonal" for the style we're going for. But 
hey, you never know... 

7) Can we design our own vehicles?

There are no vehicle creation rules in the rulebook, since this is 
intended as an "historical" game. Sufficient variants and payload 
customization rules are supplied to fill in the gap, however. 

8) I speak German, and the few bits of German language look oddly 
translated. Why?

Many apologies to all the German gamers out there, but our primary 
market is the English-speaking countries, and we chose the words for 
"coolness" and ease of pronunciation rather than linguistic correctness. 
In many ways, it's much the same system as the Japanese use with 
English in anime, and it works for them. ^_^

9) "Landwirtschaftlicher Arbeiter" is spelled wrong. Why?

We got no less than six different spelling from six different German 
players. After the fifth message, we just gave up. Sorry. Besides, bad 
German is very much in the style we're going for... The pulps had 
terrible spelling and expressions, ja? ^_^

10) What are you going to do about the swastika?

In many European countries, it is forbidden by law to show a swastika, 
the infamous Nazi cross symbol. There is also a lot of negative 
emotional content attached to it. While we are all historical buffs, we 
understand these difficult issues and we have decided to replace the 
swastika by a simple black cross. It's an alternate universe, we can
get away with it. :) We'd like to stress that this is not an attempt at
censorship, merely an editorial choice. Had the game been purely
historical, the vehicles would have featured the proper markings. 

11) Will you release miniatures for the line?

We're exploring a few options, yes. The first few models should be
out toward the end of 2000. They will be modeled in 15 mm scale,
which is common in WWII wargaming circles. The GK miniature
line will be blister-packed with all the bits and decals required to
make the variants shown in the rulebook. Future releases will
include both complete units (the walkers and other "esoteric"
vehicles) and conversion kits for existing historical vehicles. 

12) How can we play the game if no miniatures are out?

The rules are structured to allow you to use any available WWII 
miniatures you have, regardless of scale. A scale chart at the 
beginning of the book let you adapt the rules to your preferred
game scale. 

13) Will there be alternate versions of major historical battles?

In the scenarios of the various Theater Books, yes. 

14) I'm a major Battle of Britain buff; will there be a version of
it with rocket fighters and such? 

Yes, in the aircraft book (in 2001 -- sorry for the wait ^_^''). 

15) Will there be other historical battles like the Normandy landing
or will you create some dramatic new battle for the invasion?

Same battles, just bigger and badder. 

16) Why is there no French or at least French resistence force included
in the basic rulebook?

Because we don't have room for them. Resistance fighters can be
simulated by normal infantry squads for now. 

17) How will separate parts of the British Commonwealth countries be
implemented, like the Canadians or the Australians? 

The Commonwealth Army book will have separate sections for each
country. 

18) The organizations of the squads are all wrong. The vehicles carry
the wrong guns. It wasn't like that in World War II! 

No, it wasn't. In our world, at least. In the GK world, things are different.
While the game is inspired by the war, it is not meant to be a correct
historical simulation (there is plenty of excellent ones already on the
market). We're aiming for excitement and playability much more than
historical accuracy. 

19) Why is the 15 mm scale not represented in the scale chart in the
rulebook? *NEW*

Because we didn't think of it at the time. It was only after the book
was published that gamers' demands showed us how popular 15 mm
scale was in WWII wargaming. 

15 mm is roughly equal to 1/120 scale (human height 15 mm x 120 =
180 cm), so the closest options in the book are either 1/87 = 21 mm
or 1/144 = 12,5 mm. We generally use the latter for general play -- 1"
Movement Units are so much easier to use. 

20) Why not make one Axis army book and one Allied instead of
separate manuals for each countries? *NEW*

It wouldn't change the total amount of material -- it would only force
you to buy a big brick instead. Plus, not all players want all the armies
-- some might want only the German forces, for example, and would
be understandably upset at being forced to buy the army lists of Japan
and Italy at the same time. 

21) On page 95, an option in a scenario involving Russian and German
forces specifies that the Russian force be given a sniper. Are there any
rules concerning the use of snipers? *NEW*

There are special rules for snipers but they were taken out of the main
rulebook to make space for more examples of play. They'll likely be
found in the Gear Krieg Companion, which is scheduled for a December
release. Here are the (condensed) rules:

*Snipers

A sniper is, in game terms, a single man infantry unit. He is armed with
a long range weapon: either the Rifle or the Anti-Tank Gun. Non-moving
snipers may aim at a specific system on a vehicular target at no penalty,
or they may choose to attack one specific infantryman when attacking a
squad. Because they take great care to conceal themselves, snipers
have the equivalent of the Stealth Perk at level 2. The sniper is counted
as being two levels higher than his true Skill when calculating his Threat
Value (thus, no sniper may have a Skill level of three or more). A standard
Morale check must be made after each sniper attack (successful or not).

LIST OF CONTRIBUTORS (in no particular order):

Marc A. Vezina, arbiter of rules questions. 
Robert E. Allen III, spotter of out-of-date info :)