Saturday, 1 April 2017

A Comprehensive Wargame System

Ten years ago I designed a comprehensive wargame system which has provided the framework for all of my wargaming activities ever since.  

In 2006 I was about to retire and move from the UK to Spain to live.  I am fortunate that my wife is, and always has been, my regular wargame opponent.  Napoleonic Wargaming has been a large part of our lives since 1969, when we played our first wargame based on “Charge or how to Play Wargames”.   It was obvious that it would continue to play a large part in our retirement, and this prompted me to plan a major reorganisation of our wargame activities.  

The result was our 1813 campaign, which has provided the background to all of our wargames since.   It started in 2009 and has produced 252 battles for us to wargame.

The campaign has changed little over the years.   There have been many minor changes, but the basic concept remains the same.   Updating the campaign maps has been the most time consuming task, but that is only because I actually enjoy making new maps.  

I am currently reviewing the project and updating some of the administration.   This is what has prompted me to explain the project in some detail in the hope that other wargamers might find it useful.

Over the coming weeks I will cover the planning and preparation for the whole system, how the campaign was designed and developed and why I opted for writing my own wargame rules rather than select one of the many commercial sets available.

Although the campaign may look very complicated and time consuming at first sight, it is in fact very simple and requires very little administration to keep it going. 

It started as a solo campaign, ran as a PBEM campaign for almost six years and has now reverted to a solo campaign.   As a PBEM campaign it did involve a great deal of work, but was a very rewarding experience.   Now that it is solo again it takes me a few hours a week to run the campaign, and about five or six hours a week to wargame.   Total output about ten hours a week.

I have recorded the whole campaign on a series of blogs which cover each phase including reports on each of the 252 battles.   You can find the current one here

Although my interest is the Napoleonic period, this system could be used for any period.  I write my wargame rules, but the system could be used with any commercial set.   My preference is 28mm scale but any scale from 2mm to 54mm could be used.

Next week I will explain the planning and preparation necessary to start this system.  


Brent said...

I'm looking forward to the posts!

JWH said...

I am really looking forward to this. I have read some of this in your asides on the subject but it will be good to read it in a comprehensive format.

thistlebarrow said...

Hi Brent and JWH

Thanks for your comments.

This systemn has served me well over the past ten years, and I am hoping that by explaining it in more details others may find it useful.



Chasseur said...

Sounds interesting, also looking forward to it!
Cheers, Mark.

thistlebarrow said...

Hi Mark

Hope you find it interesting