Home Forums Historical Bolt Action HE VS BUILDINGS

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    Tank firing direct fire he at a building the Infantry can go down inside the building and that halves the hits however I have a gaming companion that says the Infantry also receives the -2 modifier to hit. please clarify this for us thank you

    Greg S

    The -2 does indeed apply. See the errata PDF for details,

    Stuart Harrison

    “Page 124-125, HE weapons against buildings.e second and third paragraph will be changed to read as follows: This means that when rolling to hit you ignore any to-hit penalties for cover. All other modifiers apply as normal – for example, Down in this case might represent the unit hiding in the building and if the enemy misses the shot, this might represent the them not having taken the shot at all, and instead still be searching for the target (and similarly a small team is more difficult to spot inside a building…).
    If you score a hit, this means that the shell has managed to find – or make – an opening. The unit inside that floor of the building suffers a number of hits equal to the ‘damage in buildings’ value in the HE chart for that shell (D3, D6, 2D6 or 3D6). If the unit is Down (units in buildings can react by going Down as normal when targeted by HE), the hits are halved as normal, rounding up. When hit by […] ”

    The line “you are literally firing at the walls of the building itself” is a poorly chosen throw away line with regards to the drawing of LOS – it doesn’t mean you get to ignore unit based to hit modifiers.


    The building rules in Bolt Action are relatively poor. Especially the targeting one, this is one of the more frequently house ruled aspects of Bolt Action.

    By the rules, when you target a unit in a building with HE, you ignore cover modifiers, but Small Teams and Down! (and obviously range / moving) still apply. When a building is empty you can target the building with only range / moving penalties.

    Where this creates feel bad moments, is when you realize how many modifiers Down! and Small Teams actually are. A Heavy Howitzer that wants to destroy a church bell tower? If the bell tower was empty you would hit it on a 3. If the bell tower has a sniper team that goes down? Hit it on a 6.

    A common house rule is to let HE always target the building itself and ignore small teams / down. It makes going into buildings a far more dangerous proposition for snipers and similar units when big guns capable of destroying those buildings are on the table.


    For game play reasons I’d make it that you have to take an order check to target an empty building (at an extra -1) because otherwise you’d never shoot a unit in a building with a 3″ or “4 HE weapons…..

    I know I wouldnt!

    Lee Brennan

    What I crazy is this…
    I want to collapse that empty building .. 3 to hit .. I want to collapse that building with people in it .. 5 to hit…I personally feel you should have the option to Target the building to bring it down on the squishes inside. This would apply to 3″ and 4″ HE. If you don’t score enough hits to bring it down, squishes inside are safe and sound….. Score enough hits to bring it down, bye bye squishes…. Just my humble opinion….

    invisible officer

    Few guns in WW II had been able to bring a building down. Like German 60 cm Mörser Karl. Even a Brummbär rarely made a town building collapse. A typical 15 cm battery needed many salvoes for a result.

    In the Warschau fights it took the Karl to kill the Polish fighters in the buildings. In other areas there they needed flamethrowers.

    Buildings and Ruins gave good cover. Monte Cassino town was another good example.

    Greg S

    Ruins are often better cover in BA than buildings, when there’s HE around.

    And in real life too. Caen is a pretty good example of this after the bombers left the entire town in ruins.

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