FFT3: Initiative and Command Rules

Initiative and Activation Phase (at start of each Move in the Command phase).

Whilst I really like the FFT3 rules, I have been toying with the idea of adding a couple of house rules concerning initiative and unit activation, I like a bit of friction and can’t resist a tinker! These house rules are meant to be nice and simple, in keeping with the rest of the rules, and to not slow things down too much. This can now be seen and downloaded at the FFT yahoo page here: https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/Fistful-of-TOWs/files/FFT3/Variants/


  1. Both sides roll 1d6, highest die gains initiative: player with initiative last move wins any ties.
  2. if a tie on first move then roll again.
  3. if the scenario is an attack/defend one, attacker automatically has initiative on first move so rolls 2d6 to see if any bonus gained.
  4. If you win the initiative you can choose whether to go first or second in the move

The difference in the roll determines what bonus you receive as an award for gaining the initiative from the following list. (E.G. Player A rolls a ‘2’ and player B rolls a ‘5’. Player B gains the initiative and has 3 ‘pips’ to use)

  • 1 pip = extra Command Activation Attempt
  • 2 pips = free complete barrage from one Bgde or Div Art Btln (use all fire units
    • Release of any Reserve/Outflanking Unit (Btln/Regt)
    • Activates Helicopter support if available
  • 3 pips = free barrage from one Corp Art Btln (use all fire units)
    • Activates an Air Strike attempt (still have to roll as per rules)
  • 4 Pips = Counter Battery Strike, opponent loses 1 whole Art Btln (roll for which one)

Obviously you can mix and match up to the amount of pips you have. So if 4 pips rolled you can use 2 x 2 pips, 1x 1pip + 1 x 3 pip etc.

Extra Command Activation Attempts can be given to any unit, and have to be declared straight away – before all units have been attempted ‘normally’. The idea is to give units a chance for multiple moves to push an attack – although it can also be used as an insurance against a failed or partial activation. You still need to roll for activation as per below.


Command Activation & Suppression Removal 

I realised after playing a couple of games that having changeable initiative would knacker the whole suppression removal as written in the rules so I’ve added these bits in bold to get around the problem – I’ve played them and they seem to work ok and add a wee bit more friction. I’ve also changed the die roll score to be more straightforward.

At the start of your movement phase roll 2d6 for each unit (Btln for ‘western’/Regt for ‘soviet’) to check if it Activates from list below. Recon btlns automatically activate but need to check for suppression removal if needed. Also not needed on first move of the game or when entering table. This will also decide what happens to suppressed stands in that unit, both A and B types 

  • if result is equal or greater than the units QC number then move as normal. Remove suppression markers
  • If result is 1 less than QC number then any sub-unit (Coy/Btln) with a supressed stand can only move half – no strat moves allowed for rest of Btln/Regt. Stay suppressed.
  • If result is 2 less than QC number then unit can’t move any sub-unit with a supressed stand – half move for rest of unit. Stay supressed.
  • If result is 3 or more less than QC number then whole unit can not move. Stay supressed.

If using Command stands use these modifiers:

  • -1 to die roll if Command stand is supressed
  • -2 to die roll if Command stand is eliminated

I hope that I have explained these ok, please get in touch if not and I’ll answer any questions – also any suggestions on tweaking them also gladly accepted.



3 thoughts on “FFT3: Initiative and Command Rules

  1. Thanks for posting these. I will certainly be giving them a try out. They appear to take as an inspiration (correct me if I am wrong) the Command system from Warmaster style rules but cut out the micromanaging. This avoids repeat successes giving one side an unassailable advantage eg when a force can move right across the table without the other side being able to effectively respond.


  2. Thanks for considering giving these a go David – I’m not sure if it is based on Warmaster but I was definitely inspired by playing a game of Blitzkreig Commander recently (not sure if that is where they get the idea from). I thought that having a maximum of 5 pips to spread amongst units would curtail the ‘panzer rampage’ effect.

    Please get back in touch once you have tried them out with any suggestions etc.


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