Definition of stationary
Lets start with a definition. Google tells me that stationary is defined as “not moving or not intended to be moved”. No real surprise there. But it does hint, as I go searching in the rule book, that just looking for the word “stationary” won’t be sufficient.
CF on being stationary
CF 1.0 Prepare to Play (p.1) lists several statuses for a Squad: Pinned, Suppressed, Ground-Hugging, NO FIRE. Pinned, Suppressed and Ground-Hugging stands cannot move. Seems stationary to me.
Pinned: “A Pinned Squad may not move until it is Rallied but it may fire (CF 6.5.1 Hits and Pins, p. 11).
Suppressed: “A Suppressed Squad may not move or fire until Rallied” (CF 6.5.2 Suppressions, p. 13).
Ground Hugging: Ground Hugging “is permitted only by stationary Squads in Open Ground and in / on any terrain Feature that does not offer Protective Cover from all forms of Fire (CF 4.1.2 Ground Hugging, p. 4)
Hidden Squads are stationary by definition as they are revealed when they move (CF 5.3 Hidden Placement, p. 7). Hidden stands benefit from Ambush Fire (CF 6.10, p. 12) and Surprise Encounters (CF 8.5, p. 16)
Minefields encourage squads wandering into them to become stationary:
“Any Squads that remain stationary in Minefields are not attacked, but if they attempt to leave the minefield they are attacked” (CF 10.1 Minefields, p. 16)
And Engineers have to be stationary to remove minefields. Being Pinned doesn’t interfere, but being Suppressed or shooting does.
“An Engineer Squad may remove a Minefield section when … The Engineer is adjacent to, or inside, a Minefield, and the Engineer is Stationary, Unsuppressed and does not fire for one entire Phasing Initiative” (CF 10.1 Minefields, p. 17)
CF 7.0 Indirect Fire which says “an FO may control fire only if he remains stationary the entire Initiative” (p. 13). By the way, “An FO may not control fire if he is Suppressed” (p. 13)
HTD Special Rule 7 – Indirect Fire on Vehicles
According to Crossfire, Indirect Fire “may not be used as Reactive Fire, or against vehicles.” (CF 7.0, p. 13). But Hit The Dirt over turns this. Special Rule 7 – Indirect Fire on Vehicles (p. iv) allows weapons 80mm or larger to shoot indirect fire at vehicles that have been stationary for two initiatives. Indirect fire at vehicles suffers a -1d6 modifier. At armoured vehicles, indirect fire suffers the -1d6 modifier and also requires a 6 to hit. Unusually for CF, this fire can cause a PIN, SUPPRESS, or KILL on the vehicle, just like infantry shooting.
Conclusions on being Stationary
Okay, what do I make of that? I see some themes in the above:
Being stationary provides protection e.g. when hidden, when ground hugging, and when avoiding mines blowing off your feet.
But being stationary makes a stand more vulnerable e.g. stationary vehicles becoming a target for indirect fire. A more complicated example is Suppression; both Pinned and Suppressed Squads are stationary, but a Suppressed Squad is more vulnerable because it cannot Ground Hug.
Being stationary enables actions that take longer e.g. calling in indirect fire and when clearing mines.
Being stationary, while hidden, enables some nasty attacks e.g. Ambush fire and Surprise Encounters.
Going stationary is instant e.g. ground hugging. But benefiting from being stationy takes time e.g. indirect fire and removing minefields.
So have I got the insight I was looking for? Unfortunately, no, not yet. But there is something there. Perhaps my subconscious will pull it together for me.