- An attacker may not occupy a square until he has defeated the enemy in that square. He may enter the square if the defender has surrendered and is still occupying the square. Example: The brave Italian battalion is in a defended position that contacts three sides and is the sole occupant of the square. It does not have to decide which edge it is defending as the position covers three sides of the square, and it is in contact with the position. The attackers can bring 2 fighting battalions to bear in close assault against it. It would not matter if one was attacking “from the flank” as the position is almost in all round defence. If one of the battalions had worked its way round to the undefended rear, the attack could go in as a Light versus Light. As it is, the attack is Light versus Medium.
- Close assault may only occur across the boundary line between two squares, by the attacking units on the boundary line. Example: The attacker has gone in on the flank. He does not avoid the defences that cover three sides of the square, but he does avoid the minefield to the front of the position. The defenders are in contact with the position, which is in contact with three sides of the square. There is only one brigade attack against one regimental defence regardless of the fact that the defenders appear to be lined up against the front of the square and the attackers only appear to be attacking one battalion.
- A defender may only defend across a boundary line by being in contact with the boundary line. If the defences that the defender is in contact the boundary line, this suffices. This means that a defender in contact with a corner can defend one to four square edges, and any close assaults from these edges must be resolved as one close assault, with the attacker and defender each choosing where they place their own casualties. A defending unit who’s defences fill the square will count as being in all-round defence. A wise attacker with overwhelming strength may decide that it is easier to win the firefight so comprehensively that he overloads and destroys the defender before close assaulting, because even if he attacks simultaneously from all four sides of the square, there is only one close assault. As a defender, you may only want three sides to be defended if you have to counterattack the position from the rear with armour. It would be usual to have infantry lanes through your own minefields to the rear, but you must specify this in your plan.
- A defender with no remaining strength points may not contest entry to a square. If the defending unit cannot retreat out of the square, it is overrun. A unit may not carry more hits than it can absorb. Any excess causes the unit to be lost.
- Any attacker having the temerity to place his unit overlapping the defences or the defending unit has immediately blundered into an ambush and takes hits as if he is a light target, with the defender rolling twice his normal dice. In the example picture above, the Crusader regiments have not quite blundered into a minefield, but they are crowded and will count as ambushed if fired upon.
- Any defender crowding units into a square such that they overlap loses the benefit of the defence and counts as a light target.
- In both the examples above just think of “cocked dice”. If your opponent kindly points your ungentlemanly behaviour out to you, then you have been given a chance to rectify your error. If you cannot not put your own house in order, then you suffer the penalty. The umpire should be vigilant as even the calmest players get carried away in the heat of the moment. I don’t know where to start on Plum Pudding Hill!
In any circumstance where there is ambiguity, each side may claim the most favourable interpretation to apply to their own side and must accept the opponent’s interpretation of their own side in return. The umpire will be even-handed in this respect without fear or favour.
I think that if I had started squares from scratch, I would have chosen Tim’s Megablitz 40mm square bases, but there are a lot of 50mm FoW bases out there, and at the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter all that much, unless there is a disparity in base size between sides.