utilities for napoleon's battles
I currently use EXCEL spreadsheet in my professional activities (teaching
and research) but that program can be also used as a very useful
Wargaming tool. There are some EXCEL utilities for Napoleon's Battles
developped by Luis Nunez (ŋNuņez?) that can be downloaded free from the
CSGA page (Enter the site and
follow the Links for Napoleonics > NB Tools from CSGA).
Those utilities are known as the Nunez Tables and allow to easily find the statistics for units (NB Roster) and Generals (General). Like all spreadheets, the Nunez Tables can be easily adapted and modified at will so all modifications introduced by NB2 over NB1 can be incorporated, as well as new units or Generals not considered by the authors of NB.
Another very useful EXCEL possibility is using it to rolling dice. Evidently, I am not talking about using EXCEL (and a computer!) only to replace dice during play, but about using it when designing a Scenario in which the OOB's, arrival times, entry points and such, were randomised such as in the Hanau Scenario. In this last, the French OOB, arrival times and entry points in the table were depending on a series of dice rolls carried out previously to the game.
The solution lays in the EXCEL function:
[For Spanish language users the function is ALEATORIO.ENTRE(N1;N2) ]
where N1 and N2 are, respectively, the lowest and highest integer numbers you want to be returned (for example N1=1 and N2=6 for 1D6).
The function allows the use of strange (1D5) or "impossible" dice (1D3) and can be also used instead a coin taking N1=1 and N2=2, so it is very flexible. Specially, it allows to roll a great number of dice with only one key touch ('F9'), because RANDBETWEEN is a volatile function changing every time that EXCEL is re-calculated thus allowing to easily study many scenarios.
Warning: The 'Analysis ToolPak' must be previously enabled in your EXCEL:
1. From the 'Tools' menu, select 'Add-Ins'
2. Tick the box corresponding to 'Analysis ToolPak'
3. Select 'OK'
An interesting and very understandable internet article about this topics can be found at ABC~All 'Bout Computers
RANDBETWEEN(N1;N2) generates a rectangular distribution in which each allowed number has the same probability of appearance. Triangular distributions (like the one found with 2D6) can be obtained by adding up the results of two or more functions. The figures below show the results after throwing 1,434 dice rolls with 1D6, i.e. RANDBETWEEN(1;6), or with 2D6, RANDBETWEEN(1;6) + RANDBETWEEN(1;6).
|Frecuency distribution after 1,434 rolls with 1D6||Frecuency distribution after 1,434 rolls with 2D6|
The above figures were generated in one pair of minutes and, evidently, do not precised to throw 4,302 times a real six-faces die!. Note also that the figures are not perfect, because 1,434 is not a number sufficient great.