MCMAP (pronounced "mihk-map") is a direct, simple style taught to all U.S. Marine Corps personnel during Basic Training. It replaces the Linear Infighting Neural-override Engagement (LINE) system of the 1990s, which taught set responses to specific attacks. MCMAP emphasizes quick, violent attacks to stun or confuse the opponent, followed by a takedown or throw. It has a few submission techniques for less-than-lethal situations, but no sport form - its main purposes are to teach Marines basic self-defense skills and to encourage aggressiveness.

Training is accordingly direct - recruits pair off and practice against each other - and includes hands-on drills that involve multiple opponents, armed attackers, and "mob engagements." Students learn a small number of techniques chosen for their violence, effectiveness, and (relative) ease of use in fighting gear. Rounding out the instruction are simple lessons in disarming, weapon retention, and bayonet fighting, plus enough training in improvised weapons to inculcate in the Marine the idea that any item can be a weapon if necessary. Advanced schooling, typically conducted in the infantry schools or operating forces, progresses into grappling and ground-fighting tactics.

The Purpose of Military Hand-to-Hand

Many traditional martial arts have a battlefield history and could justly claim to be "military." For game purposes, however, "military hand-to-hand" specifically describes the melee combat styles taught to TL6+ troops armed with firearms. That is, it refers to modern military styles.

The biggest difference here is that the arts practiced by pre-gunpowder warriors were primary skill sets, while those learned by modern soldiers are last resorts. A hightech infantryman carries a rifle, grenades, and often a pistol. He enjoys the support of machine guns, mines, and mortars. He can radio for a fire mission. He'll use all of these tools before joining hand-to-hand combat, because they're all more efficient at killing the enemy. A samurai or a Roman legionary, on the other hand, starts with a spear or a sword!

This is important for soldier characters. Modern military training doesn't spend as much time on hand-to-hand combat as on firearms. Thus, a Marine PC shouldn't have many more points in MCMAP than in Guns skills. Elite troops who are highly trained at melee combat have different skills and techniques from their historical brothers, too. The GM who wants to design his own military styles should be aware of the goals of such arts.

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