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Stovepipe Rocket Launchers

Starting late in 1910, Dr. Robert Goddard began work to develop a small, man-portable rocket
launcher for use by the US Army. Early in the war against the Martians, it was quickly learned that
most small arms fire was ineffective against the Martian tripod machines. Infantry soldiers, desperate
to provide themselves with some weapon which could be effective, resorted to all sorts of makeshift
methods in those early days. The only ones which proved effective were explosive bombs, usually
dynamite. Unfortunately, the only way to deliver the bombs was for the infantry to run right up to the
tripods and try to attach the bombs to them in some fashion. This was extraordinarily dangerous, and
troops attempting the feat invariably suffered very heavy casualties. Goddard hoped to invent a much
more effective and safer weapon for the infantry.

Working with Charles Munroe, a noted explosives expert, a rocket carrying a hollow-charge warhead
was created. It had approximately the same hitting power as a 4” artillery projectile. A lightweight
launching tube was also designed. Extensive testing at the Aberdeen Proving Grounds in the spring
and summer of 1911 saw the device perfected. Officially designated the ‘Rocket Launcher, Anti-Tripod,
M1’, the troops instantly dubbed it a ‘stovepipe’. By the fall of 1911, the stovepipes were being
manufactured in quantity and sent to the troops in the field. They quickly proved their worth in the
great battles around St. Louis and Memphis in the summer of 1912. Not only were they capable to
damaging a tripod at a range of several hundred yards, they proved to be a perfect weapon for
dealing with the Martian spider machines which came into use about that same time.
Stovepipes are now standard equipment in the American army with one or two assigned to each
infantry platoon.

Stovepipes in All Quiet

Rather than introduce a whole new Stovepipe unit, I have decided to use the same approach as the
Forlorn Hope rule in the All Quiet Rules. Stovepipes can be added to infantry units, giving the unit the
ability to take stovepipe shots at enemy targets in addition to its normal attacks. A marker, or a
special figure can be placed with the units that are so equipped to mark them.

An infantry unit can have


one or two stovepipes
attached to it. For each
stovepipe, the unit can fire
one shot each turn. The
infantry still gets its
normal rifle fire as well.
Rather than worry about if
the stovepipe is destroyed
when the unit takes
damage, the rule is simply
that as long as there is
one stand left per
launcher, the stovepipes
can continue to be used.
(I.e. if the unit has one
stovepipe assigned it can
continue to use it as long
as any stands remain in
action. If it has two, then
it needs to have two
stands in action to fire
both of them.)
An infantry company with one stovepipe assigned to each rifle platoon
Other units like machine guns and artillery can have stovepipes assigned to them, but the unit
CANNOT fire the stovepipe and its normal weapon in the same turn. One or the other. (But each
stovepipe only needs one normal stand to fire it. For example, a machine gun unit with three machine
guns could fire one stovepipe and two machine guns.)
A machine gun platoon with an attached stovepipe.

Stovepipes in close combat.


If a unit with stovepipe teams launches an assault, the stovepipe can fire as normal during the
assault. This gives the unit more attacks.

Stovepipe Team
Point cost: 10 points each
Range: 12”
Power: +2

My Stovepipe Markers
I made some Stovepipe markers by buying some Old Glory American Bazooka figures and then
replacing their helmets. Not a perfect match for All Quiet infantry, but they will do.

US Infantry Battalion 1912


I like infantry! Cavalry and artillery and tanks are cool, too, but I’ve always liked infantry. Given a
choice I will usually choose infantry-heavy armies.

So when building my All Quiet on the Martian Front American Army I made sure I had quite a bit of
infantry. Infantry is very weak and squishy in that game, but it has a low point cost and actually
serves a valuable function. The one great weakness of the Martians is that their formidable tripod
machines only have one weapon. If the humans throw lots of targets at them, they will have a trouble
destroying them all. And while the infantry is weak, it is not totally helpless. If the Martians ignore it
to shoot at high value targets like tanks and artillery, the infantry might be able to get in close enough
to hurt them seriously. And if they DO fire at the infantry, then they aren’t shooting at the high value
targets.
I recently worked up a table of organization for the US Army in 1912. While I doubt that I will ever
have enough figures to field a whole division, I have made a start with a single battalion. The 1st
Battalion of the 109th Infantry Regiment, 28th Division.

The battalion consists of a battalion HQ

Three rifle companies (A, B, &C), each one with three rifle platoons (All Quiet ‘units’) and a machine
gun platoon.
D Company, the fourth, is the heavy weapons company with two machine gun platoons and two
mortar platoons.
The whole thing comes in for only 700 points, the cost of three or four Martian tripods. I wonder how
that would turn out in a fight?
US Army Organization, 1912

Writing my Great Martian War novels, the size of the action ranges from a few platoons up to divisions
and corps. While it is unlikely that many gamers will ever be able to field divisions or corps, I like to
think about how the US Army is organized. This will allow me to come up with realistic sub-units to
use in my games.

At the start of the war I assumed that the Army would be organized along historical lines similar to
what it used in World War I. An infantry division then had a ‘square’ organization in that it had four
infantry regiments, organized into two brigades. Obviously they had no tanks or other special
equipment. Each division had some attached artillery and support units, but they were primarily an
infantry force designed to fight other (human) infantry forces.

When faced with a Martian army where every enemy was encased in an armored fighting machine, the
infantry divisions were at an enormous disadvantage. Ad hoc measures were taken, and these helped,
but by 1911 it was obvious that the organization needed to be revised. The brigade structure was
seen as unwieldy and was abolished. The ‘square’ organization was changed to a ‘triangular’ one with
only three infantry regiments per division. This was in line with most European armies. The spare
infantry regiment from the existing divisions were used as a cadre around which new divisions were
built.

Of primary concern in the new organization, was increasing the number of weapons which could hurt
the Martian tripods. The new ‘stovepipe’ rocket launchers were issued to the infantry and a machine
gun squad was added to each rifle company. Each infantry battalion had its fourth company converted
from a rifle company to a heavy weapons company equipped with machine guns and mortars, giving
each battalion its own artillery.

The infantry regiments had three anti-tripod guns attached, and an additional field gun battery added
to the regimental cannon company.

The organization of the division’s artillery regiment was largely unchanged with three field battalions
and one heavy battalion.

It became obvious early in the war that one of the most effective weapons available to the army was
the new steam tanks. Battalions of these vehicles were created and attached to divisions and corps as
they became available. Division commanders complained that they never had the tanks that they
needed when they needed them. The new organization attempted to rectify that situation by attaching
a tank regiment to each infantry division. This represented an enormous commitment of resources and
some officers argued that the tanks would be better employed concentrated into self-contained tank
divisions. While several such divisions were created and performed well, the bulk of the tanks were
given to the infantry, although it was several years before enough were available to give each division
its own regiment.

All Quiet

When I first started playing All Quiet I assumed that the figure ratio was one figure is one man and
one vehicle one vehicle. This seemed to make sense and Ernie Baker confirmed that was his intent.
But as I played the game and wrote my novels, this assumption seemed less and less desirable. The
one-to-one ratio for vehicles and artillery (and Martians) was fine, but not for infantry. Making a single
infantry unit with fifteen figures be a squad meant that you needed an ungodly number of figures to
even field a mere company. So I decided that a game infantry unit was really a platoon, which would
mean a figure ratio of about one figure equals 3 men. I think this works very well. So, with that as my
starting point, here is the organization I am using for my US Army circa 1912,

US Rifle Company (160 points)

Company HQ (One Command Unit, 30 points)

Three Rifle Platoons (3 infantry units, 30 points per unit)

Weapons platoon (One Machine Gun Unit, 40 points)


Note: Each Platoon can have up to two Stovepipe Teams attached for 10 points each.

US Infantry Battalion (700 points​)

Battalion HQ (One Command Unit, 30 points)

Three Rifle Companies, (160 points per company)

Weapons Company (Command Unit, Two Machine Gun Units , Two Mortar Units, 190 points)

US Infantry Regiment (2560 points)

Regimental HQ (One Command Unit, One Rifle Platoon, 60 points)

Three Infantry Battalions, 700 points per battalion)

Regimental Cannon Company (Two Field Batteries, 80 Points each, 160 points))

Regimental Anti-Tripod Company (Three Anti-Tripod Guns, 240 points)

(Note on artillery: Units can be considered horse-drawn at no extra cost. To give them trucks, add 15
points per unit)

US Infantry Division (20,720 points)

Division HQ (Two Command units, Three Rifle Platoons, 150 points)

Three Infantry Regiments, (2560 points per regiment)

One Artillery Regiment (1350 points, see organization below)

One Cavalry Squadron (875 points, see organization below)

One Attached Tank Regiment (10,665 points, see organization below)

US Tank Company (615 points)


One Company Command Tank (60 points)

Two MK II Tank Platoons (165 points each)

One MK III Tank Platoon (225 Points)

US Tank Battalion (1905 points)

Battalion Command Tank (60 Points)

Three Tank Companies (615 points each)

US Tank Regiment (10,665 points)

Regimental MK IV Command Tank (220 pts)

Three Tank Battalions (2475 points each)

One Heavy Tank Battalion (1710 points)

Three Heavy Tank Companies, each with Three MK IV Tanks (570 points)

One Armored Car Company (410 points)

Armored Command Car (50 points)

Three Armored Car Platoons (120 points)

One Armored Artillery Battalion (720 points)

One Command Tank (60 points)

Three MK II Mobile Artillery Batteries (220 points each)

Three Field Engineer Vehicles (60 points each)

US Field Artillery Battalion (270 points)

Battalion HQ (One Command Unit – 30 points)

Three Field Artillery Batteries (80 points each)


(Note on artillery: Units can be considered horse-drawn at no extra cost. To give them trucks, add 15
points per unit)

US Heavy Artillery Battalion (510 points)

Battalion HQ (One Command Unit – 30 points)

Three Heavy Artillery Batteries (160 points each)

(Note on artillery: Units can be considered horse-drawn at no extra cost. To give them tractors, add
30 points per unit)

US Artillery Regiment (1350 points)

Regimental HQ (One Command Unit – 30 points)

Three Field Artillery Battalions (270 points each)

One Heavy Artillery Battalion (510 points)

US Cavalry Squadron (875 points)

Squadron HQ (one mounted command unit – 35 points

Four Mounted Cavalry Squads + Command Squad (35 points each)

Four Rough Rider Motorcycle Squads + Command Squad (45 points each)

Three Armored Car Platoons + Command Car (100 points each + 40 points)

One Weapons Platoon (One Machine Gun Squad, One Mortar Squad (100 points)

Okay, this probably seems like a lot! Few of us will ever have the time or money to field anything
close to a full division. But this organization can still be useful. For example, let’s suppose we started
with a single infantry battalion. If we look at the total resources available to the division, what might
that single battalion be able to expect in the way of support?

Starting out with the regiment, there are two field batteries and the anti-tripod guns. So the battalion
could possibly expect a field battery and one Anti-tripod gun.
Division support could vary, but if one field artillery battalion were assigned to each regiment, then
one battery might be added to each battalion. The heavy artillery battalion only gives each regiment a
single heavy battery, so the chance of any individual battalion getting one is small but not totally
impossible. The tank regiment could supply each infantry regiment with a whole tank battalion, so
each infantry battalion could expect a tank company. The heavy tanks would probably be concentrated
as a reserve, but in theory the nine MK IVs could be split up among the nine infantry battalions, giving
one to each.

So what does that give us for a ‘typical’ force?

1 Infantry battalion – 700 points

2 field artillery batteries –160 points

1 Anti-tripod Gun – 80 points

1 tank company – 615 points

Total 1555 points

Possible additions:

1 heavy field battery – 160 points

1 Mk IV Tank – 190 points.

Grand total 1905 points.

Add 9 stovepipe teams to the infantry squads and you come out at 1995 points.

Obviously this is only one possibility, we haven’t mentioned the cavalry squadron, or possible corps
level assets which might end up supporting your battalion, but it makes a good starting point.
This is a project I’ve been working on for a while. I wanted to build a squadron of US Cavalry for the
All Quiet on the Martian Front game as described in my upcoming book: “The Great Martian War:
Counterattack!”

By the fourth year of the war, the army had come to realize the near-helplessness of traditional horse
cavalry. Despite some heroic actions, like the defense of Glorietta Pass during the Battle of Santa Fe
(as described in “The Great Martian War: Breakthrough!”) it was obvious that cavalry needed far
heavier weapons than they could carry on horseback. At the same time, the mobility and
independence from a fuel supply of the old horse cavalry could not be ignored, either. So a hybrid
organization was decided upon combining horse cavalry, motorcycles, armored cars, and heavy
weapons which could be carried on pack horses. Forces such as these proved their worth at Little Rock
and Memphis.

1st Squadron, 5th United States Cavalry


Its commander, Captain Frank Dolfen
A Troop.
The rocket lancers and bombardiers were considered suicidal, but effective.
B Troop

C Troop with the Reeves Mark II armored cars.


D Troop with mortars and heavy machine guns carried on pack horses.
D Troop deployed.

The models are quite a collection of manufacturers. The horse cavalry and mortars are by QRF . Most
of the motorcycles are All Quiet figures, although I modified one with a FoW German sidecar. The
heavy machine guns are Blue Moon, and the armored cars are HEAVILY modified German armored
cars from the Plastic Soldier Company.

If you are curious about the books upon which this is based, you can find them here:

www.amazon.com/Great-Martian-War-Invasion-ebook/dp/B01BKZRG64/ref=la_B01BJYXPOS_1_1?s=b
ooks&ie=UTF8&qid=1508273402&sr=1-1