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  • Army Marksmanship Clarifications for Non-Army Personnel (AO-1803-03, AD 09-1501)

  • Report on marksmanship events your chapter has undertaken (pictures and/or videos are very much encouraged), or discuss various board or online games that you've played through the marksmanship program, or even would like to be considered to be added into the program.
Report on marksmanship events your chapter has undertaken (pictures and/or videos are very much encouraged), or discuss various board or online games that you've played through the marksmanship program, or even would like to be considered to be added into the program.
 #17774  by Jeffrey A. Webb
 Wed Apr 04, 2018 2:24 pm

There have been a LOT of questions about the Army Marksmanship Program and how it works since the publication of AO-1803-03. Let me see if I can clarify some of the questions/queries/concerns as far as I am able from my position as Director of Army Marksmanship.

The AMP was originally published as AD 09-1501 here: ... ve_09-1501. This is the system we should be using per AO-1803-03. Due to some slight miscommunication referring to the draft manual that has been floating about, I feel the need to clarify that the manual is still in the pipe, with these new changes applying it to all services needing to be taken into account. Please refer to the AD linked above for the explanation of how the program works.

1. Where is the manual referenced in the AO?
In development. Again, due to some commo issues, I was caught a bit unaware and am working to update the draft manual into something that will be applicable across the services. I'm working through my boss, the Marshal of the Army, who is communicating with the elements outside the Army to ensure we're all on the same page.

2. Who do I report my Marksmanship Hours to?
This element has not changed. Your hours are reported to the authority, per your slice of TRMN, that Marksmanship Credits would be reported to prior to the changeover. In the Army, that's Installation Commanders. For the Manticoran Navy and Marine Corps, this is your numbered fleet commander per AO 1604-02.

3. What games are on the list?
That's the beauty of the Army Marksmanship Program. There is no list. Any game applies. This was done because there are many instances of a member showing up to a meeting with a new game and finding the members unwilling to play it in favor of something that "counts." The spirit of the Marksmanship Program was intended to get TRMN members gaming together- so eliminating the list in favor of counting any and all games was a feature of the Army program.

4. How do I classify a game?
The AD contains a list of examples and a Game Taxonomy checklist. If a determination can't be made, the Awarding Authority can make a call, or you can email me or drop a message here and we'll come up with an answer. The Game Taxonomy list makes heavy use of the keywords established by Board Game Geek to help classify games.

5. Why track hours and not individual game sessions?
If Spacer Jones sits down and plays a game of X-Wing with Petty Officer Smith, one on one, they might play for about 45 minutes. Under the older Marksmanship Program this would be 1 credit in Pistol. Lance Corporal Doe sits down with his Squad and plays Axis and Allies for six hours. This would be 1 credit in Rifle. Meanwhile, the Naval folks have racked up another 4-6 credits in Pistol. Not entirely equitable. By tracking hours, everyone is credited for time spent gaming rather than individual games.

6. How does this math work? I mean, Astrogation exams weren't this hard!
So, it breaks down like this. For a game to count, there must be at least two TRMN personnel of any branch/division/classification involved. As long as they have a TRMN number, they count.

So, two members is the baseline to count a game. For every member after that who participates, the actual hours are multiplied.
  • Two Members : Hours x1
  • Three Members: Hours x2
  • Four Members: Hours x3
  • Five or More Members: Hours x 4
Once a game is over, if there can be a single winner (not winning team) in a game, the winner gets one additional credit.

So, a five-player game of Axis & Allies that lasts 6 hours would earn 24 credits for each participating member. The winner would get +1, for 25 credits.

Traditionally, if a tournament is run, it is up to the tournament referee and players to decide if they wish to be credited for individual bouts with the possibility of more people earning the +1 for being the sole winner, or have the total number of players in the tournament count toward the multiplier and only the tournament winner getting the +1.

7. How do I count computer or mobile games?
In synchronous games in which TRMN members are playing together in real time, count them as you would a tabletop game. In asynchronous games, such as Star Wars Galaxy of Heroes, use the number of TRMN members in the Clan and count 0.25 hours of play time for each day of play. This sounds like a small amount, but for mobile games it really adds up over time. A Clan of 5 or more means 1 credit per day, ~30 credits per month, etc.

Games like Pokemon Go can be excellent social events. If a number of TRMN members get together to go Catch 'em All, count the hours as you would for any tabletop game under the "synchronous gaming" explanation in the above paragraph. The point is to be collaborating and cooperating with your fellow TRMN members. If that is happening, the game counts. If it's not happening... don't count it.

8. I saw something about Game Master or Instructor recognition?
This was in the draft manual, and has not yet been approved. Let's face it, tabletop gaming can be time consuming for the folks planning and executing. Teaching how to play a game is a service to your fellow members. Organizing a game day likewise. In the case of Dungeons & Dragons or other roleplaying games, the GM may spend two or three times as much time planning the game as actually playing it. This is no different from event prep for a panel, con or other club outing. It was my intention when we were collaborating on the Army Marksmanship Program to recognize these individuals for the time and effort they put in. HOWEVER- this has not yet been officially authorized and codified. My suggestion is to log the number of REALTIME hours spent teaching or running a game at the table with no modifier, and keep that information somewhere against the day when we might have something official worked out. Sure, it doesn't take into account all the pre-game and post-game prep, but it does keep track of realtime hours of entertainment provided to fellow TRMN members. So, once we have something, you'll have those records. And if that never comes to pass, individual COs can look at those hours and decide to award something to that member based on hours of work.

9. So, Navy Pistol encompasses Army Pistol, Grenade, Flechette Gun, Plasma Carbine and Tribarrel. How do I score that?

Navy and Marine Corps members can earn all the individual weapons the Army program has listed. The trick is, for ribbon rack purposes, you wear the highest qualification level of the weapons grouped under Pistol or Rifle per AO 1803-03. So, if you're a Marksman with Pistol, Expert with Grenade and High Expert in Plasma Carbine, you'd wear the Pistol High Expert ribbon.

10. So, I'm Navy, can I be an expert with Plasma Carbine like Scotty Tremaine?

YES. You can. Navy and Marine Corps earn individual categories like everyone else, but they only wear the highest of their quals as amalamated under the Pistol and Rifle ribbons per AO 1803-03. Please see #9, above. This means issuing authorities have to track each weapon type separately just as the Army does.

I hope everyone enjoys the options opened up by the new plan. So many more games to choose from- in fact all the games. Try something new. Something you might not have considered. LCPL(HG) Kathy Hench from our Home Guard unit at Sandgate keeps bringing these games that don't simulate warfare. Spice trading. Treasure hunting. Stained glass window making? But somehow, we've had fun with all of them. Give games you wouldn't normally play a shot, and while you're at it, show your favorite games to your TRMN mates. Oh, and the Marksmanship Program is a great recruiting tool. Explain the "gotta catch 'em all" nature of playing different games for credits and earning awards, and you might just get some new folks into your chapter who come for the games and stay for TRMN!
Last edited by Jeffrey A. Webb on Wed Apr 04, 2018 8:28 pm, edited 2 times in total.
 #17777  by Kevin Walsh
 Wed Apr 04, 2018 2:35 pm
can navy folks qualify for Plasma Carbine? theres a precedent there in honor of the queen I think, where somebody was going to throw a fit about the weapon Scotty Tremaine was carrying, til they were told he was qualified High Expert with it
also, there seems to be some confusion on the witness section

In service to the queen
CPO Kevin Walsh
2nd Fleet Range Officer
Bosun HMS Hotspur
 #17778  by Jeffrey A. Webb
 Wed Apr 04, 2018 2:43 pm
Good morning, Chief, and thanks for asking.

As I interpret AO 1803-03, Naval and Marine personnel can count games that qualify under all the other Army categories, but they will ultimately be grouped under the Pistol and Rifle header for those personnel. I don't have any further insight into the way the AO is written, we'd need someone in the Navy chain to chime in to answer this one any other way- but the way it's presented, it looks like Pistol and Rifle are the only two quals available outside the Army at this time.

The witness section basically says if only two members are involved, a third TRMN member must verify that the game took place. If three or more are actively playing, no such verification is needed.
Kevin Walsh liked this
 #17780  by Kevin Johnson
 Wed Apr 04, 2018 3:00 pm

Is there any guidance on how to convert the "old way" into the "new way" for those members who were halfway to the next marksmanship level when the new AO was published. For example, if a member had played 20 games, then may I recommend the following? Assume each game has a value of say 4 hours. (Is that reasonable based on probable length of game, # of opponents, victory, etc.?) In this case, that's 10 games above the minimum Sharpshooter level. Multiple by 4 to get 40 hours. Add those hours to the minimum level of Sharpshooter (100 hours) for a new total of 140 hours. Does that seem reasonable?
 #17781  by Jeffrey A. Webb
 Wed Apr 04, 2018 3:12 pm

Good morning! The issue with conversion is that it's above my paygrade to make determinations on what the Navy and Marine Corps policies are. We're going to have to wait for someone above me in the chain to determine what the policy is on converting old game sessions to new credit hours. Your suggestion sounds reasonable, but to come up with an "official" policy someone on the Navy side of things in a position to make such a determination would need to step in.

Now, if someone said "Colonel Webb, square this away." I'd figure something out. But at the moment, my lane is the Army side of things, and explaining how we do it so everyone can get on the same page. Translating the old Navy system into the new system is something I'm not in a position of authority on which to make policy.
 #17782  by Kevin Johnson
 Wed Apr 04, 2018 3:39 pm
Sir, based on your above response regarding witnesses, it sounds like there must be at least 1 TRMN opponent AND a 2nd TRMN member who can be either another player/opponent or a non-player bystander? Non TRMN witnesses or players do not count at all. Is that correct? This seems to make more sense. If my entire family (all TRMN members) are playing a family game, then the game counts for everyone. My interpretation of AO 1803-03 was that there must be a TRMN non-player witness, regardless of number of opponents. (In that case, one family member would have to be the witness and not count as a player.) What you explained is much better.
 #17787  by Richard Davenport
 Wed Apr 04, 2018 5:17 pm
Is it reasonable to assume that lower-tier awards get converted into the equivalent number of hours? For instance, I just received my pistol sharpshooter award. That would mean I'd need another 100 hrs to earn the pistol expert badge.
 #17788  by Shawn Merrow
 Wed Apr 04, 2018 5:38 pm
Thank you Colonel Webb for sharing your insight on this. I love the vast increase of games that count as the previous list did not have much for members on a small budget. I prefer it only needing two TRMN members to count as finding a TRMN member who is willing to just to watch the game, could be difficult.
William Karnesky liked this
 #17789  by Kevin Walsh
 Wed Apr 04, 2018 5:42 pm
I agree with Colonel Merrow on the issue with witnesses... that and I was a little disapointed that Traveller didnt make the list of RPGs, I know its not a complete list, but it was the first SF RPG that really did well, and it celebrated its 40th anniversary last year


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