That means that the -1 per direction means that I get -1 per direction I'm attacked?
That means, if I fire in two directions in one turn I get -2 for both dice rolls.
It's only -1 per direction you are actually fighting.
So, a unit in a built up area might be shown on a map facing in all directions. But this doesn't mean it takes a -4 modifier when firing or meleeing on any particular side. The modifer relates to the number of sides actual fighting is taking place. So, a unit in a bulit up area firing from one side of the BUA takes a -1 modifier. If firing from 2 sides (i.e. in 2 directions) it takes a -2 modifier. And so on. This is meant to represent the fact that although a unit in a BUA would have some troops protecting its flanks and rear, they will move around within the BUA to face whatever threat is presenting itself - but some troops will always remain in all round defence to guard against surprises from other directions.
See p.17. The diagram shows what I mean.
Of course, if you prefer to continue the way you are currently playing, that is fine.
The rules assume that any unit occupying a BUA will be in some sort of 'all round defence' (p.17) so usually the situation you mention will not occur. If you want to play it with only designated sides defended, what you suggest sounds correct.
See the top of p.32 - this is really the only way the kind of situation you describe happens under the rules as written. Neither side counts cover (as with woods) - in general house to house fighting caused high casualties.
That gave me the first set of rules I've ever found where units could go into the attack, be repulsed, fall back and reorganize and then go into the attack once more.
HoW does give you that type of play - many people have remarked on it. The rules were designed that way. If you had to physically stop your units in the game to rally off hits you'd never get anywhere.
May I suggest you play a few more games and get a better idea of the rules?
I meant to add that one must accept that artillery were major battlefield killers in this period, as in the Napoleonic era. My own belief is that the effectiveness and flexibility of artillery in this period is sometimes underestimated - of course, you may disagree, as do a number of other players. Artillery being too effective is a common criticism of the rules.
Rallying off hits isn't dependent on a unit being stationary - it's just the distance from the enemy that counts. However, you are right - bombarding from a distance can have little effect. My rationalisation is that, without the threat of an enemy close by, the officers and NCOs would be able to maintain order during a steady but relatively slow build up of casualties.
However, your frustration is understandable and this is one reason why I added in a pre-game bombardment rule, which gets some hits on the enemy before the game starts, and also amended the rule on counter-battery fire so that it was worth engaging the enemy guns with yours. Check the 'amendments' download for those.
The trick during an attack is to get some of your units to close with the enemy quickly (ideally light infantry), and prevent the rallying off of hits. Counter battery fire should now be worthwhile as well. Also check the suggested limit on the amount of artillery per infantry brigade - some players tend to have too many guns on the board.
2. Yes. If the evading unit clears the unit being interpenetrated, then the latter can fire.
5. I don't require supporting units to be in line of sight. I can see that some players might disagree, so play it as you prefer. I'm assuming the supported unit simply knows their supports are there, from prior movements or contact with messengers. However, being able to act as a supporting unit although out of sight doesn't then mean that the supporting unit can be shot at.
1. LOS is blocked at the edge of a BUA (p.16), so units can't be fired on unless positioned at the edge. This applies to roads as well as any other part of the BUA.
2. I always play that the evaders get to fire at short range, in accordance with the evade sequence outlined on p.24.
3. The road is the cavalry's escape route and represents passable terrain. "Retreating or routing units may only change formation to avoid enemy units or impassable terrain" (p.29). By changing formation into column and filtering down the road the cavalry is avoiding impassable terrain, i.e. the BUA. You don't need to deduct for the formation change - the unit is panicking and order has been lost.
4. The bottom of p.15 would appear to answer your questions. If you want to alter the safety distance, go ahead. It is necessary to clearly indicate which hills are steep or gentle before the game. Note that the 'Amendments' download (amendment 18) indicates that I no longer apply the negative melee modifier for gentle hills as I found it too harsh on attacking troops.
5. Units in march column may count as support according to the normal conditions. Those conditions, and the units that *cannot* provide support are detailed on p.30.
House rules are always of interest, especially when the reasons for them are given. I'm sure any such posts will be most useful to other players.
An independent cossack unit is more likely to move than an out of command grenadier regiment.
Personally I don't find that unreasonable. The grenadiers would wait for orders as they are suddenly out of their command structure. But I encourage you to ignore the rule and class independent units as you see fit. Let me know how you get on.
If I remember correctly, my thinking was that independent units would have been selected for an independent role for a reason, and so having them dithering around doing nothing wouldn't make much sense. This is definitely one of those rules you can disregard if you wish.
Of course, Russian Cossacks are normally classed as 'inferior', but my idea was that those selected to act independently would probably be the best of the bunch.