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Programmed Leaders in DBA Campaigns

Programmed Leaders in DBA Campaigns

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Published by A Jeff Butler
Solo AI for solo wargaming in DBA.
Solo AI for solo wargaming in DBA.

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Published by: A Jeff Butler on Jul 12, 2013
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Programmed Leaders in DBA Campaigns
The following system is designed to allow the inclusion of one or more non-player countries in a DBA campaign. It "programs" the actions of non-player leaders by use of simple die rolls to determine movements, invasions, battles, sending of allied contigents,and resort to tributary status. It is based almost entirely on P.J. Raper's "ProgrammedLeaders for DBA Campaigns," which appears in
Wargames Illustrated 
. I have adapted ithere since I not sure where/how to obtain the necessary permissions to reprint this article.This adaptation retains the basic ideas of Raper's original with additions and expansions. Itvaries the textual presentation to avoid violating copyright, which interestingly enough protects the mode of expression but not the ideas themselves. Despite my tinkering, allcredit, however, goes to P. J. Raper for his original ideas.As a general rule, all dice rolls concerning a programmed leader should be done by animpartial campaign umpire or by the player who has the least interest in the outcome of thespecific die roll.
Leader Type
At the start of the campaign, players will need to identify the nature of each programmedleader. This basic nature remains unchanged throughout the campaign. Roll 1D6 andconsult the following table:1
Feeble Leader
(timid, fearful, evencowardly; lacking martial skills.)2-3
Incompetent Leader
(not feeble, butlacking in sound military judgment)4-5
Skilled Leader
(a veteran commander who uses sound strategy and tactics tomaximize the odds of militarysuccess).6
Rash Leader
(an ambitious, evenimpetuous leader who consistentlytakes dangerous risks against longodds).
 Non-player leaders and their armies are placed in their capital at the start of the campaigngame and return to the capital at the close of every campaign year. The position of non- player armies should always be visible on the campaign map.
Feeble and incompetent leaders may only move one map route per seasonal turn. Skilledand rash leaders may move up to two map routes per season. Possible movement directionsare subject to the following restrictions:
Feeble leaders will not voluntarily move beyond their own borders or into combatwith another nation. Feeble leaders will retire from invading aggressors towardtheir capital, and may not move forward into a province adjacent to a foreign armyfor fear of provoking a conflict. Otherwise movement will be determined byrandom die roll.
Incompetent leaders will always invade the nearest available city/territory,regardless of its strength or weakness. If there is more than one option, determinemovement by random die roll. Foolish leaders will not hestitate to use sea or mountain routes in Fall or Spring.
Skilled leaders will always seek to gain territory and avoid battle, by invading thenearest undefended city/province or weakest available opponent (choosing thenearest if there is more than one option). The weakest foe is determined bycomparing the size of the respective armies in number of elements (regardless of composition and without accounting for possible allied contigents). Skilled leaderswill use sea or mountain routes only in Summer.
Rash leaders will always seek battle by invading the nearest available city/provincegarrisoned by an opponent's army, regardless of strength or weakness, and willcross sea/mountain routes in Fall or Spring.Where there is more than one movement option or direction, assign equal probability toeach option and resolve by random die roll.
When invading a non-player leader's nation, roll 1D6 and consult the following table todetermine the non-player leader's reaction:
Feeble Leader
1-4Abandons his province to seige, retiring hisarmy directly to his capital5-6Abandons his province to seige, retiring hisarmy to the nearest adjacent province onroute to the capital, otherwise does not moveif already in another province.
Incompetent Leader
1-2Stands seige (retiring his army to the nearestadjacent province, otherwise does nothing.)3-5Stands seige (without retiring army i present, otherwise does nothing.)6Gives battle (regardless of odds)
Skilled Leader
1-3Stands seige (retiring his army if present tothe nearest adjacent province).4-6Gives battle unless outnumbered by 4 omore elements, otherwise same as 1-3.
Rash Leader
1-2Stands seige (leaving his army in thecity/province if already present, otherwisedoes nothing)3-6Gives battle, regardless of the odds.If a programmed leaders army is besieged for more than one season, roll 1D6 and consultthe following table to determine what action the programmed leader will take:
Feeble Leader
1-4Continue to stand seige.5Sally forth and give battle.6Surrender and accept tributary status.
Incompetent Leader
1-4Continue to stand seige.5-6Sally forth and give battle.
Skilled Leader
1Continue to stand seige regardless of odds.2-3Continue to stand seige (unless army enjoysa numerical advantage over the opponent,otherwise see 4-6).4-6Sally forth and give battle (unless army is ata 3 or more element disadvantage, otherwisesee 1).
Rash Leader
1-2Continue to stand seige.4-6Sally forth and give battle (regardless oodds).

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