TOAW IV: Unit characteristics and effects
A unit is the smallest organization of military force that can appear on a map. It is defined by the equipment (see below) assigned and authorized, its Proficiency, Readiness, Supply, Icon Colors, Icon Type, and Size symbol.
Unit Characteristics and Their Effects
Unit Strengths and Capabilities
A unit’s Strengths and Capabilities are based on the equipment assigned, Proficiency, Readiness, and Supply Level. Various assigned equipment strengths are scaled and combined into generic Attack and Defense numbers for quick reference purposes. The quick reference numbers are a reasonably good indicator of a unit’s expected performance, but they only tell part of the story.
If you examine a Full Unit Report (see Unit Report), you will see the Strengths broken down by category:
- Airmobile Transport – This is the unit’s ability to provide Airmobile Transport to Airmobile Units within 200 kilometers
- Anti-Armor – This is the unit’s strength against enemy armored equipment. Anti- Armor strength is only used against enemy armored equipment.
- Anti-Personnel – This is the unit’s strength against enemy non-armored equipment.
- Anti-Air (high) – This is the unit’s strength against aircraft operating at high altitude. This generally applies to Medium and Heavy Bombers, or aircraft performing Interdiction Missions in the area.
- Anti-Air (low) – This is the unit’s strength against aircraft operating at low altitude. This generally applies to smaller aircraft performing Bombardment or Combat Support Missions or launching Interdiction Attacks against moving units.
- Defense – This is the unit’s general ability to defend itself.
- Reconnaissance – This is the unit’s chance to perform exceptional feats of reconnaissance. It also influences a unit’s Strength at the beginning of an attack and its ability to move near enemy forces.
- Engineering – This is the unit’s chance to rebuild bridges and aid other units in certain combat engineering tasks.
- Minor Ferry – This is the unit’s ability to reduce movement penalties for itself or others entering River or Canal terrain in the unit’s location.
- Major Ferry – This is the unit’s ability to allow other units to enter “Super River” or “Suez Canal” terrain.
- Rail Repair – This is the unit’s chance to rebuild damaged Rail Lines.
- Artillery – This is the unit’s Bombardment Strength. It includes that portion of the Anti-Personnel Strength that the unit can use in Bombardment Missions or in Combat Support. Typically, only Headquarters, Naval, Air, and Artillery units will have a non-zero Artillery Strength, regardless of equipment assigned. Note that HQ's with no ranged equipment will still display a range of '1'.
These Strengths are simply the sums of the total Strengths in each category for all equipment assigned to the unit, multiplied by the unit’s Morale (see below), scaled to fit the game displays. The unit’s actual internal Strengths, used for all game calculations but not displayed, are much larger numbers. At the low end (displayed unit strengths less than three), there can be quite a bit of real difference between units that show similar displayed Strengths.
Some units have anti-aircraft fire ranges of up to 50 kilometers against Air units participating in Combat Support or Bombardment Missions in the area.
Unit Experience and Proficiency
The Proficiency of a Veteran unit (one that has previously participated in a combat) is a known quantity. This is not true of Untried units (as displayed at the top of the Unit Report). An Untried unit’s actual Proficiency is determined when it first participates in combat and can vary by as much as 33% (relative) from the originally projected Proficiency.
If a Veteran unit receives large quantities of replacement equipment, there is a chance that the unit will lose its Veteran status. Every time a unit engages in combat, there is a chance that its Proficiency will increase. Less proficient units will increase more rapidly than more proficient units.
This represents the effects of wear and tear on equipment and troop fatigue. A fully rested unit has a Readiness of 100%, and a completely exhausted unit has a Readiness of 33%.
Unit readiness recovers at the beginning of every Turn except the first. The amount recovered is based on the Scenario’s time and distance scales but will generally be approximately the amount needed to fully recover from a maximum movement.
Units recover Readiness more slowly if they have moved in the previous Turn, occupy a contaminated location, or if they are Unsupplied. Due to the highly technical nature of Air and Helicopter units, these units’ Readiness Recovery is also strongly affected by unit Proficiency. Low Proficiency Air and Helicopter units will recover Readiness very slowly.
This is a weighted average of a unit’s Proficiency, Supply Level, and Readiness. Regardless of actual Proficiency, Supply Level or Readiness, Morale can be no lower than 10% and no higher than 100%. This value is multiplied by the raw equipment Strengths to calculate the actual effective Strengths of the unit.
This is a weighted average of a unit’s Proficiency and Readiness, expressed as a percentage. Regardless of actual Proficiency and Readiness, Unit Quality can be no lower than 10% and no higher than 100%.
This is the chance that the unit will pass a Quality Check. Quality Checks are made at numerous points in the game to determine things like the unit’s ability to sustain an attack or hold ground in the face of a strong enemy attack.
Air Unit Combat Support and Air Superiority Reactions (Advanced Rules)
In order to provide combat support or intercept enemy Air units, air units must pass both a Quality and a Range Check. The chance of passing a Range Check decreases with range to target as a proportion of the unit’s Combat Range.
This is the sum of the weight of all assigned equipment, expressed in tons. This figure is used when determining whether the unit is eligible for transport by Aircraft, Helicopters, Ships, or Trains.
Unit Deployment Orders (Advanced Rules)
Units may be deployed in various ways within their location. This Deployment status reflects an internal optimization for specific roles or missions:
- Defending – The unit is deployed to defend the location. There are defensive advantages for this deployment and supply advantages for not moving.
- Entrenched – This is an enhanced version of the Defending Deployment, with greater defensive advantages.
- Fortified – This is the strongest possible defensive deployment, with very great advantages.
- Tactical Reserve – The unit will attempt to react to enemy attacks into adjacent locations. Headquarters and artillery units assigned to Tactical Reserve will not react (but will still support). This makes this a good deployment for retaining both artillery mobility and supportability.
- Local Reserve – The unit will attempt to react to enemy attacks into locations within a movement radius defined by the unit’s remaining Movement Allowance. Regardless of the radius, the reaction movement is only one hex per combat.
- Mobile – The unit is ready for movement. Artillery units in this Deployment will not provide long range supporting fire. This is also the Deployment status of a unit that moved in the previous Turn.
- Moving – This is the same as a Mobile deployment, except that the unit has already moved this Turn. Units automatically deploy to Moving Deployment if they move.
- Attack – The unit is scheduled to launch an attack later in the Turn. A unit enters Attack Deployment as soon as it is ordered to attack an enemy location.
- Limited Attack – The unit is scheduled to launch a limited attack later in the Turn. A unit enters Limited Attack Deployment as soon as it is ordered to conduct a Limited Attack on an enemy location.
- Retreated – This is like a Mobile Deployment, except that the unit has recently retreated.
- Routed – This is like a Mobile Deployment, except that the unit has recently been routed. The unit may not move or attack.
- Reorganizing – The unit is attempting to recover from recent combat and may not move or attack.
- Embarked – The unit is boarded on strategic transports – Trains, Ships, or Aircraft. When the unit disembarks, it will automatically redeploy to Moving status.
- Interdiction Mission (Air & Helicopter units only) – The unit will perform Interdiction Missions.
- Air Superiority Mission (Air units only) – The unit will perform Air Superiority Missions and will do Sea Reconnaissance.
- Combat Support Mission (Air & Helicopter units only) – The unit will support friendly ground units during attacks.
- Rest Mission (Air & Helicopter units only) – The unit will perform no Missions. This accelerates the unit’s ability to recover Readiness.
- Sea Interdiction Mission (Air & Helicopter units only) – The unit will perform Sea Interdiction Missions and will do Sea Reconnaissance.
Changing Deployment Status (Advanced Rules)
There are restrictions on your ability to change a unit’s Deployment:
- A unit may only change to the Defending deployment from Tactical Reserve, Local Reserve, or Mobile Deployments.
- A unit may change from Retreated Deployment to Mobile Deployment, if it has enough Movement Points remaining to position itself for an Attack or Bombardment against an enemy unit. No such Attack needs to be executed, though; the unit may cancel the Attack order after its confirmation of attack eligibility.
- A unit may only change to Entrenched Deployment from the Mobile, Tactical Reserve, Local Reserve, or Defending Deployments. The unit must either pass a Quality Check or a Local Engineering Check (a measurement against the unit’s Engineering Capability). Regardless of whether the unit passes either of these Checks, the unit expends its entire Movement Allowance in the effort.
- A unit may only change to Fortified Deployment from the Defending or Entrenched Deployments. The unit must either pass a Quality Check or a Local Engineering Check. Regardless of whether the unit passes either of these Checks, the unit expends its entire Movement Allowance in the effort.
- A unit may deploy to Mobile, Tactical Reserve, or Local Reserve Deployments from Defending, Entrenched, Fortified, Tactical Reserve, Local Reserve, or Mobile Deployments.
Unit Loss Tolerance Orders (Advanced Rules)
Unit combat actions depend on the unit’s Orders Emphasis, which is a relative gauge of casualty tolerance:
- Ignore Losses – Units will attempt to either seize or defend locations in combat, regardless of losses.
- Limit Losses – Units take losses into consideration in combat; they will either break off attacks or retreat from a defense, if necessary, to preserve themselves.
- Minimize Losses – Units will make only the most superficial of efforts in combat. If the enemy is very weak, they will press their attack or defense. If the enemy is strong enough to inflict significant losses, the unit will break off or retreat.
Division into Sub-Units (Advanced Rules)
Units may divide and recombine. This is done using the Divide / Recombine button in the Unit Report window, or from the popup menu you get by right clicking on the unit icon in the Map Panel. When you choose to divide a unit, it can be divided into either two or three subunits at your discretion. In order to recombine into the original unit, all sub-units must be present. If any subunit is lost, the unit may not recombine until the subunit reappears as a reinforcement.
Sub-units will have only about 80% of the parent unit’s proficiency. If you recombine your units, the newly recombined parent unit will have 125% of the average sub-unit’s proficiency. This means that the act of dividing a unit and recombining it will result in no permanent loss of the unit’s Proficiency. During the game, units are frequently subdivided automatically due to adverse combat results.
Also, an Airborne unit might be sub-divided during an Airborne Landing operation. To determine if a unit has been subdivided, consult the Formation Report.
Air, Naval, Coastal Artillery, Fixed Artillery, Supply, and Headquarters units may not be divided. Formations with many divided units are more likely to be forced into Reorganization as a result of combat losses.
Unit Special Capabilities
Many units have special capabilities, based either on the equipment assigned or the Unit Icon symbol. The special capabilities of a unit (if any) are listed in the Special Abilities section of the Unit Report for that unit, as well as from the unit’s 2D icon. See the Unit Notes for information on unit 2D icon symbols.
These units may only be based on airfields. Movement is a transfer from one airfield to another, while combat is normally handled as Bombardment or Combat Support and does not actually require movement.
These units are eligible for Air Transport and Airdrops.
These units are eligible for Airmobile Movement.
These units are capable of independent Amphibious Movement.
Artillery and Headquarters Units
These units automatically support Cooperative friendly units within their Bombardment range. They are also better at disengaging from the enemy than most other units.
Attack Helicopter Units
These units act much like Air units, except that they may be based in any friendly location.
These units have enhanced movement capabilities along Roads.
These units aid in distribution of supplies to nearby Cooperative units. In some Scenarios, they also provide command functions.
Helicopter Transport Units
These units can provide Airmobile Transport capacity for Airmobile units within 200 kilometers.
These units have enhanced movement capabilities in hills, mountains, dunes, wadis, badlands and across major or minor escarpments. These units may attack across Major Escarpments or Minor Escarpments.
These are Air units with the additional capability to be based on Aircraft Carriers.
These units are only capable of movement through Anchorage or Deep-Water locations.
These units have enhanced movement capability in Snowy locations.
These units have large Reconnaissance capabilities and a special capability to easily move near enemy units. They also have all the capabilities of Airborne, Airmobile, and Mountain units.
Increases the Supply Level in each supplied location that can trace a path no longer than the Supply Radius to the Supply unit. Additionally, Supply units multiply supply distribution to adjacent Cooperative units by 1.5. There is no effect on Unsupplied locations.
Units with various types of engineering equipment assigned can have an Engineering capability. Such units may be able to rebuild destroyed bridges, aid in Fortification efforts, or conduct Ferry operations (Land units crossing rivers). See Engineering for details.
This is the generic term for all the useful weapons, transport vehicles, and other hardware that can be assigned to units. The equipment in the game is rated for a Weapon Range and Anti-Armor, Anti-Personnel, Anti-Air High, Anti-Air Low, and Defense strengths. Each piece can also have one or more of the following characteristics:
Equipment Characteristics and Their Effects
Movement Related Characteristics
- A unit’s Movement Allowance and cost to enter certain terrain types are both based on the movement characteristics of the equipment assigned to the unit.
- Riverine Equipment: This equipment uses the Riverine Movement rate (2400 kilometers per week) and can only move along Rivers and through Shallow Water and Flooded Marsh terrain.
- Motor Equipment: The equipment uses the Motorized Movement rate (560 kilometers per week).
- Slow Motor Equipment: The equipment uses the Slow Motorized Movement rate (350 kilometers per week).
- Fast Motor Equipment: The equipment uses the Fast-Motorized Movement rate (660 kilometers per week).
- Horse Equipment: The equipment uses the Horse (with wagons and other transports) Movement Rate (340 kilometers per week).
- Fast Horse Equipment: The equipment uses the Fast Horse (Cavalry) Movement rate (400 kilometers per week).
- Rail Move Equipment: The equipment always moves by Rail Movement (4200 kilometers per week). It does this without using Rail Transport capacity and can only move by rail.
- Slow Equipment: The equipment uses the Foot Movement rate (280 kilometers per week).
- Static Equipment: The equipment cannot move without transport.
- Fixed Equipment: The equipment cannot move.
- Helicopter Movement: The equipment moves at the helicopter rate.
- Agile: The equipment has a horsepower to weight ratio greater than 20 horsepower per ton. This equipment can move off-road and is slightly more difficult to hit on the battlefield.
- Roadbound: The equipment moves poorly off Roads.
- Amphibious Equipment: The equipment has an intrinsic Amphibious Movement capability.
Combat Related Characteristics Targeting
- Targeting+: The equipment has enhanced targeting capabilities. See Anti-Armor Chance to Hit, per shot for information about target calculations.
- Targeting++: The equipment has enhanced targeting capabilities.
- Targeting+++: The equipment has enhanced targeting capabilities.
- Targeting++++: The equipment has enhanced targeting capabilities.
- All Weather Equipment: The equipment has a Night / All Weather capability. This is primarily used by aircraft. Naval equipment assigned this ability function as if they are equipped with radar for naval spotting purposes.
- High Altitude AA Equipment: The equipment has an Anti-Aircraft capability designed primarily for use against high-altitude aircraft.
- High/Low Altitude AA Equipment: The equipment has an Anti-Aircraft capability designed for use against both high-altitude and low-altitude aircraft.
- Long Range Equipment: The equipment has a Ranged fire capability.
- Extended Bombardment Range: The equipment can fire to 1.5 times its normal Bombardment Range, at half strength.
- Shock Cavalry: The equipment is shock cavalry.
- Standoff Weapons: The equipment fights at a distance.
- Infantry: The equipment is infantry.
- Torpedo Bomber: The equipment is a torpedo bomber – very effective against naval targets.
- Dual Purpose Missiles: The equipment is a missile that can be used against land or sea targets.
- Poor Geometry: The equipment is very boxy – slope ratings are reduced significantly.
- Fair Geometry: The equipment is somewhat boxy – slope ratings are somewhat reduced.
These types of armor provide improved resistance to HEAT anti-armor weapons.
- Composite Armor: The equipment has Composite Armor.
- Laminate Armor: The equipment has Laminate Armor (for example, Chobham armor).
- Reactive Armor: The equipment has Reactive Armor.
- Armor Equipment: The equipment is armored.
- Active Defender Equipment: The equipment actively contributes to a location’s defense and is directly exposed to enemy action during any combat.
- NBC (Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical) Equipment: The equipment is resistant to Nuclear and Chemical attacks.
- Kinetic Weapons: The equipment is using kinetic weapons in Anti-Armor combat.
- HEAT Weapons: The equipment is using some variation of High Explosive Anti-Tank (HEAT) weapons in anti-armor combat. HEAT weapons have relatively poor performance against some kinds of armor.
- Anti-Shipping Equipment: The equipment has a strong anti-shipping capability.
- Anti-Shipping Only Equipment: The equipment can only be used against naval or embarked targets (coastal guns).
- Precision Guided Weapons: The equipment’s Attack strengths increase if the owning force has Precision Guided Weapons. Systems that always use Precision Guided Weapons do not have this characteristic.
- Smoke: The equipment fires only smoke.
- Atomic Armed Equipment: The equipment can make Atomic attacks if Atomic Weapons are available.
Transport Related Characteristics
- Transport Equipment: The equipment can transport other equipment.
- Light Transport Helicopter: The equipment can provide one ton of Airmobile transport.
- Medium Transport Helicopter: The equipment can provide three tons of Airmobile transport.
- Heavy Transport Helicopter: The equipment can provide eight tons of Airmobile transport.
- Lightweight: The equipment does not add to the weight of a unit.
- Airborne: The equipment can be transported by air.
- Naval Air Equipment: The equipment is a Naval Aircraft.
- High Air Equipment: The equipment is an aircraft that attacks at high altitude.
- Low Air Equipment: The equipment is an aircraft that attacks at low altitude.
- In-Flight-Refueling Equipment: The equipment is an aircraft that can extend its range via in-flight-refueling.
- Heavy Naval Equipment: The equipment is a heavy naval vessel.
- Medium Naval Equipment: The equipment is a medium naval vessel.
- Light Naval Equipment: The equipment is a light naval vessel.
- Carrier Naval Equipment: The equipment can base naval aircraft units.
- Engineer Equipment: The equipment has an Engineering capability.
- Major Ferry Equipment: The equipment can enter Super River or Suez Canal locations and can assist other units in entering this terrain.
- Rail Repair Equipment: The equipment can repair damaged Rails.
- Recon Equipment: The equipment has a Reconnaissance capability.
- Support: The equipment provides Supply functions for a Formation.
- Command: The equipment provides Command functions for a Formation.
- Police: The equipment reduces traffic congestion penalties at its location.
Most unit Strengths and Capabilities are based on the total Strengths and Capabilities of all equipment assigned to the unit.
A military unit is essentially an organization of troops and equipment. Real-world military units usually have an “official” Table of Organization and Equipment (TO&E). This is the equipment that the unit is authorized to control. In most cases, real units do not exactly match their authorized strength. If the assigned strength is less than the authorized strength, the unit is considered “under strength” and will be eligible for replacements.
The equipment under the control of a unit at any given time is considered “assigned”. Generally, but not always, the amount of equipment assigned to a unit is less than the amount authorized. The Strengths and Capabilities of a unit are largely determined by the equipment actually assigned.