The wargames just keep coming out, almost as if these companies have a desire to make a buck or two! We are in a great time for games with really high production values, great looking art and graphic design and some really interesting and unique subjects being games. This month, I found 18 games with 2 of those being offered on Kickstarter.

If you missed the September Wargame Watch you can you can read that here at the following link:


1. WARFARE: Modern Tactical Combat from WBS Games Currently on Kickstarter

I love a good tactical scale game. There is something to be said for one man equals one counter and all that as it just keeps things really fast and furious. It also makes the action feel up close and personal and really keeps me engaged in the drama of the firefights. This month, I saw a new company called WBS Games (which literally stands for We Build Smiles) doing a Kickstarter for a modern tactical combat game called WARFARE: Modern Tactical Combat and once I started looking at it I immediately wanted to share it with you here. In fact, the cover took me way back to my Call of Duty days with Call of Duty: Modern Warfare on XBox.

From the Board Game Geek game entry, we read the following:

WARFARE: Modern Tactical Combat is a game that will introduce you to modern warfare in urban and rural areas. Learn to use the deadly weapons your teams have at their disposal to achieve their objectives (clearing an area from hostiles, saving civilians, conquering or holding key points).

Lots of different units (anti-tank, SAM, machinegun teams, engineers, riflemen, special operation teams, helicopters, tanks and other vehicles), markers (mines, IED, civilians, mob, roadblocks), support assets (planes, snipers, mortars, artillery) and various nationalities (US/USMC, Russian Federation, UK, Italy and insurgents).

A “Learn-by-playing” booklet will help you to learn rules and apply them step by step in scenarios of growing complexity. Not only does the game provide historical scenarios set in Iraq, Somalia, Afghanistan and Syria, but its mini-maps can be combined freely to build any kind of scenario a player wishes.

WARFARE: Modern Tactical Combat is definitely easy to master. Its low complexity and density of counters on the map make it a fast game (on average 90 mins.), with a very high level of interaction.

The game appears to use standees to represent the different units on the board and has lots of different terrain tiles. The game also includes urban operations, with pacification of civilians and other interesting elements of ongoing overseas operations.

If you are interested in Warfare: Modern Tactical Combat from WBS Games, you can back the project on the Kickstarter page at the following link:

As of October 1st, the Kickstarter campaign has raised $15,656 toward its $1,926 funding goal with 244 backers. The campaign will conclude on Saturday, October 8th at 5:59pm EDT. 

2. Māori: Warriors of the Long White Cloud from Compass Games Currently on Kickstarter

Over the past few years, New Zealand and the Maori seem to be a hot topic as this is the third game that I have seen on the subject. A few years ago, we really enjoyed our play of Maori Wars: The New Zealand Land Wars, 1845-1872 from Legion Wargames and I am also very keenly interested in this title as well.

From the game page we read the following:

Maori: Warriors of the Long White Cloud is a card-driven war game that puts you in charge of a complex society as you try to impose your will on your neighbors – using essentially stone-age technology. Players begin the game on the North Island of Aotearoa, in charge of only a single iwi (or tribe). Other players are scattered across the map, with the many intervening iwi still neutral in this power struggle. You must use your force of will to recruit neighboring iwi, using their people and resources to increase your power base. You begin with almost nothing, so you must train the population into a fighting force, build war canoes, and expand your base by building and fortifying new villages. Should you focus on building a large land force, or building fast and flexible war canoes? You decide!

We love the CDG mechanic as the card play tells a great narrative and really gives players options to take the historical events, which are usually really powerful, or use the Ops Points to take actions of their choosing.

The double deck of Action Cards determine the tempo of the game. In your turn, you play one card, either for the Event or for the Operations Points. The number of cards in your hand is determined by the number of villages you control. Ops points can be used for either building or moving. Nearly all of the cards are different, so you will never know what opportunities your opponents might have- the cards are filled with curses and omens and natural disasters. Many cards are reaction cards, allowing you to interrupt your opponents’ plans or augment your combat.

The map becomes a very important part of this game as it takes on the role of the land and either helps or hinders players as they move about the land trying to gain allies and conquer their rivals.

The map is divided into areas, each iwi encompassing one or two areas. Mountains and forests hinder your movement, but battles take place within the areas. Simply total the number of combat points each player has in the area, and the larger force adds the difference to his die roll. But then the cards fly! Ambushes, curses, haka, frightened troops and leaders – what will happen next? When the dust settles, one player must retreat – how far is determined by how badly he lost. The longer the retreat, the more likely that the defeated warriors will throw down their weapons in panic. The victor might capture some of the enemy – and then must decide whether to conscript them to help build his economy, or add them to the menu of the victory celebration back home.

We posted an interview with the designer Kevin McPartland in September 2020 and you can read that at the following link:

If you are interested in Maori: Warriors of the Long White Cloud, you can back the project on the Kickstarter page at the following link:

As of October 1st, the Kickstarter campaign has raised $5,138 toward its $1,250 funding goal with 67 backers. The campaign will conclude on Wednesday, October 5th at 4:52pm EDT. 

3. Seapower & The State: World War Three at Sea from Compass Games

Naval wargames are always different and frankly really interesting to me. We have only played a few of them but this one definitely looks interesting to me and it is not because of the Cold War Gone Hot theme here with World War III.

From the game page, we read the following:

Seapower & The State is a strategic study of World War 3 at Sea. The game examines the worldwide state of naval affairs from 1984-1994 as related to major conflicts in this two-player simulation game of moderate complexity on the grand strategic scale. The viewpoint of the simulation is that of grand strategy and thus has the players acting as the overall commanders of the naval forces of the Eastern or Western alliances. Numerous scenarios are presented for various force levels for different time periods. Designed & developed by Stephen Newberg, this substantially upgraded 2nd Edition includes all of the aspects of the original with more components and all-new artwork.

If major war had broken out in the last two decades of the previous century, the oceans of the world would have been the scene of some of the most intense military conflict in the history of mankind. Since the Second World War naval science has undergone two major technological revolutions that have completely altered the types of weapons available to naval forces and the naval forces themselves. This has changed the interrelation-ship between the three major types of naval platforms, namely the aircraft over the sea, the warships on the surface of the sea, and the submarines beneath the sea. The first of these revolutions was the development of nuclear propulsion systems, leading to true submarines, for the first time untied to the sea’s surface. The second was the application of electronics and computer systems to all forms of naval platforms, resulting in enormous increases in the detection and destruction capabilities.

If you are interested in Seapower & The State, you can pre-order a copy for $54.00 from the Compass Games website at the following link:

4. WWII Commander: Volume Two Market-Garden from Compass Games

Anytime I see a Market-Garden game, I sit up and take notice. There is just something to be said for the objectives, the terrain and the issues with the roads and then add in paratroopers and it gets really interesting. Then also, any game that John Butterfield designs is noteworthy as well. This one has both of these and I am very interested in the game.

From the game page, we read the following:

WWII Commander: Volume Two Market-Garden is the second in a series of fast two-player area-based games on key campaigns of the Second World War.

Market-Garden recreates the Allied airborne and ground offensive against the German Army in Holland in September 1944. Allied airborne divisions dropped behind German lines to hold a highway corridor across rivers and canals until ground forces could link up to cross into the industrial heart of Germany. Each player commands the opposing Allied or German forces.

The simple elegance and constant player interaction of the WWII Commander games capture the tension of WWII strategy. The game system is a fast-playing introduction to war games, but mastering its tactics is a true challenge as the players take turns deciding which units to activate and where to attack and defend.

As the Allied player, your airborne forces must seize and hold key objectives while your armored ground forces break though the German front and advance aggressively without getting cut off by German infantry and armor coming from all sides. As the German player, you must delay the Allied ground advance, trading space for time as you attempt to destroy the airborne forces behind your lines. The rules are simple, gameplay is fast and furious, and can be completed in one sitting, and either side can win at different stages of the game.

If you are interested in WWII Commander: Volume II Market-Garden, you can pre-order a copy for $54.00 from the Compass Games website at the following link:

5. Brief Border Wars II from Compass Games

The concept of the quadrigame is making a comeback. This simply means that one box contains four distinct games with a shared rule set but with each different conflict comes a set of rules that are exclusive to that battle. Brian Train is a very good designer and this new effort of his follows up on Brief Border Wars that was published in 2020.

From the game page, we read the following:

Brief Border Wars II is the second set of four small operational level games on short border conflicts from Compass Games. The game system uses a card-driven system first introduced in Brief Border Wars that models the chaotic, stop-and-start nature of these impromptu wars. Four sets of exclusive rules reflect the peculiar nature of each conflict. Your sense of improvisation will be challenged as you explore four of the more interesting small wars fought in the early 20th century.

The four conflicts include:

  • 1913: Second Balkan War (also known as “The Interallied War”)
  • 1919: The Seven-Day War (also known as “Teschen”)
  • 1939: The Nomonhan Incident (also known as “The Battle of Khalkin Gol”)
  • 1940: The Italo-Greek War (also known as “The Balkan Defiance”)

If you are interested in Brief Border Wars II, you can pre-order a copy for $54.00 from the Compass Games website at the following link:

6. Fighting Formations: US 29th Infantry Division from GMT Games

A new game that has been hinted at by GMT Games over the past year or so is a new addition to the Fighting Formations family of tactical games designed the late great Chad Jensen. This is a system that we have never played. We love Combat Commander, and by all accounts Fighting Formations shares a lot of DNA with that system. Maybe this one will get us off of dead center and get this system played for us.

From the game page, we read the following:

Fighting Formations is intended to be an ongoing series of wargames covering WWII tactical combined-arms combat at the platoon and squad levels. Each game in the series will feature a distinct combat unit, highlighting battles in which that unit participated as well as its particular order of battle and fighting characteristics. In this second volume of Fighting Formations, we feature the US 29th Infantry Division—“Blue and Gray”—as it fought from just after D-Day in June of 1944 to the end of the year.

I really like the concept of the system and the focus on a famous combat unit and the battles that they participated in during World War II. But, there is more to like to the system than just that.

In each scenario, one player will take command of elements of the featured unit while the other assumes control of the opposing forces. These two players will alternate giving orders, activating their units on the map for various military functions. Players attempt to achieve victory by moving their combat units across the game map to attack their opponent’s units and to achieve as many scenario objectives as possible. The degree to which a player succeeds or fails is measured by a scenario’s specific victory conditions—be it the destruction of enemy units, the taking of vital map board objectives, or the exiting of friendly units off the opponent’s map edge.

Sounds familiar but does it have the cool cards that Combat Commander used?

The game has Asset cards—including smoke, artillery, air support, man-portable support weapons and demolitions—but is not card-driven. Each Asset will either take the place of a standard order or provide the player with some form of reactionary capability during an order.

So not a clone of CC, which is a good thing as then it would simply be called Combat Commander, but a unique twist on the cards being assets. Sounds cool!

Fighting Formations US 29th Infantry Division is a stand-alone game in the Fighting Formations game series. While utilizing the basic rules, FF:29’s playbook includes specific terrain, fortification, and unit special action rules in order to more accurately portray tactical warfare as experienced by the participants in France, Holland, and Germany during this time period.

If you are interested in Fighting Formations: US 29th Infantry Division, you can pre-order a copy for $75.00 from the GMT Games website at the following link:

7. Napoleon in Egypt from GMT Games

I love a good Napoleonics game. A few years ago, we played our first in Hundred Days 20 and really loved that system and have really loved playing around with Commands & Colors Napoleonics and its various expansions. Now comes a new game system from a new father-son design duo focused on Napoleon’s invasion of Alexandria.

From the game page, we read the following:

Napoleon in Egypt is a two-player, card-driven, operational wargame that allows you to recreate the French campaign in Egypt and Syria, from the landing of the French troops to the surrender of General Menou on August 31st, 1801. The game draws inspiration from other top-selling CDGs like Here I Stand and Twilight Struggle. A good and fast-playing introductory wargame thanks to its tight ruleset with few exceptions, the game will also please the veteran wargamers with 100 cards dripping with flavor, challenging players with the hand management every CDG fan has come to love!

The highlights of the system include:

  • Battle system featuring custom dice which represent the Combat Quality of each Unit involved, leading to a fast combat resolution without having to compute DRMs or refer to charts.
  • Events capturing the many pivotal moments of the campaign: the naval battle of Aboukir, the discovery of the Rosetta Stone, Napoleon’s untimely decision to return to France, etc.
  • Fortified Spaces’ populations side with one faction or the other as they trade one occupying force for another.
  • Espionage actions include the assassination of generals, ambushes, and sway of public order.
  • Tracks to measure the progress of the scientific side of the expedition, with perks helping the French Player on the field.

If you are interested in Napoleon in Egypt, you can pre-order a copy for $62.00 from the GMT Games website at the following link:

8. The Dark Summer: Normandy 1944 2nd Printing from GMT Games

We played and fell in love with The Dark Sands a few years ago and now are very interested in The Dark Series and it’s very interesting Chit-Pull Activation System that simply tells a fantastic and interesting narrative of battle. We then proceeded to play the next up volume in the series The Dark Summer: Normandy 1944 and equally loved the game.

From the game page, we read the following:

The Dark Summer: Normandy 1944 is the latest in Ted S. Raicer’s WWII operational series that began with The Dark Valley: The East Front Campaign 1941-45. The game uses a chit-pull activation system that determines both the order and type of each sides’ actions during the game’s ten action-packed turns, covering June 6 to August 21, 1944.

The availability of Action Round chits (for the Germans, and separately for the British and US forces) is itself determined by the draw of Weather chits, one per turn, which reflect the importance of weather on the effectiveness of Allied air superiority and Allied shipping across the Channel. Weather also determines the number of German Reaction markers, which allow limited response to Allied actions. The “Dark” chit pull system makes The Dark Summer an excellent game for solo play, while keeping both players involved in face-to-face play.

While the game is large in scope it is designed with moderate complexity and appears to be very playable. The game does however cover all the most important elements of the campaign. There are rules for the D-Day Landings, untried German strong-points and Ost battalions, Allied tac-air and carpet bombing, Allied artillery superiority, German nebelwerfer and flak guns, Allied naval support, the conquest of Cherbourg, exiting and re-entering the map, and variable entry and possible delay of both side’s reinforcements.


Here is a link to our video review for the game:

The game also made it into my Top 10 Wargames of 2021! and you can read that list at the following link:

If you are interested in The Dark Summer: Normandy 1944 2nd Printing, you can pre-order a copy for $41.00 on the GMT Games’ website at the following link:

New Release

1. Nagashino 1575 & Shizugatake 1583: Battles of the Sengoku Jidai from Serious Historical Games

I am a sucker for anything related to the Sengoku Jidai. I just love Japanese history and the concepts of the samurai. New from Serious Historical Games is a large wargame on the period called Nagashino 1575 & Shizugatake 1583: Battles of the Sengoku Jidai.

From the game page, we read the following:

Nagashino 1575 & Shizugatake 1583 is the first volume of a series dedicated to battles in the Sengoku Jidai period of Feudal Japan. The game is in a box containing a beautiful double-sided zone map (59.4 cm x 42 cm or 23 x 16.5 inch), 216 beautifully illustrated counters, 24 page rulebook – French and English – , one game aid in each language and two scenarios. The scale is 300m per zone, 45 minutes per game turn and 500 men per counter. A game lasts 3 to 4 hours and is ideally for 2 players.

The game has two different scenarios with the Shizugatake scenario being smaller and shorter while the Nagashino scenario is pretty big with lots of units. You will also notice that this is Volume 1 in the Age of Warring States Series and there are more games to come so keep an eye out.

If you are interested in Nagashino 1575 & Shizugatake 1583: Battles of the Sengoku Jidai, you can order a copy from the Serious Historical Games website for € 80,00 ($81.00) at the following link:

2. No Peace Without Honor! – The Dutch War 1672-1678 from Compass Games

I have heard lots of good things about this game’s predecessor in No Peace Without Spain! but have not had a chance to play the game.

No Peace Without Honor is a two-player game depicting Louis XIV’s earliest European wars, the War of Devolution 1667-68, the Dutch War 1672-78 and the War of the Réunions 1679-1684. While this is a complete game on its own, combined with Nine Years War and No Peace Without Spain, players can refight the entire wars of Louis XIV in one grand campaign from 1668 to 1713.

This stand alone game uses the No Peace Without Spain System. A new countersheet provides additional leaders, such as the young Prince William of Orange, or the skilled Bourbon veterans Turenne and Condé. The Sun King himself, Louis XIV, can make an appearance. A new set of event cards features incidents such as the Ottoman threat to Austria, colonial wars and the Anglo-Dutch naval war. Players must not only battle each other, but also deal with increasing war weariness among their respective populations which can trigger more political and economic events, and eventually force you to the peace table whether you are ready or not.

So when combined with the other two games mentioned (Nine Years War and No Peace Without Spain) this becomes a major campaign stretching over 45 years. Could be really interesting!

If you are interested in No Peace Without Honor! The Dutch War 1672-1678 you can order a copy for $75.00 from the Compass Games website at the following link:

3. 1914 – Nach Paris from VUCA Simulations

WWI is an oft gamed subject and there are thousands of great games out there (we played just 14 of them last year as a part of our Guns of August Event and barely scratched the surface!). But, there is always room for just one more, especially when that design takes into account some new research and information about the time period and the fighting and attempts to more realistically model what happened in The Great War. A few months ago, (I missed these games for a few months), VUCA Simulations released a new WWI game called 1914 – Nach Paris designed by a new designer in Bertrand Munier.

From the game page, we read the following:

In August 1914 many French people were proud to fight for Freedom, against autocracy and pangermanism. Germans and French were confident of victory, the former would soon see themselves in Paris and the latter in Berlin, all of them knew the price of duty.

The vast majority of soldiers mobilized in August 1914 thought that the conflict would be swift and that they would return home for the harvest at the latest. It was with fervor and conviction that all of them took the “flower with the gun” to the battlefield. During the battles of the borders and the Marne, the losses amounted to more than 1,128,000 men of all nationalities, with about 293,000 killed.

  • Were there any strategic errors?
  • Was there a bad evaluation of the forces involved?
  • Was there serious military incompetence on both sides?
  • Or was it the macabre result of a brutal confrontation between two heavily armed military blocs?

With 1914 – Nach Paris you can try to find the answer to questions like these.

Finely modeled units of the belligerents, an accurate and representative topography of the theater of operations and the various fortified obstacles, the accuracy of the chronology of the disposition of troops and highly detailed logistical networks are modelled to faithfully simulate the first big confrontations of the Great War.

 The Grand Scenario allows players on a relatively wide front and for a longer period of time to test strategic engagements with a very high degree of command autonomy. Several shorter scenarios of varying size and length will also be included, such as the assault on Liege or the Battle of the Meuse.

If you are interested in 1914 – Nach Paris, you can order a copy for $138.00 from the VUCA Simulations website at the following link:

4. The Chase of the Bismarck – Operation Rheinübung 1941 from VUCA Simulations

As I mentioned earlier, naval wargames are always a different kind of game and we have enjoyed several of them. One other game I saw from VUCA Simulations was this very cool looking game about chasing down one of the greatest battleships of the WWII era in the Bismarck (I used to love bismarck doughnuts when I was a kid with their lovely cream filling!) The Chase of the Bismarck is a design effort with Jack Greene and Patrick Gebhardt and if you are interested we recently posted an interview on the blog that you can read at the following link:

From the game page, we read the following:

The Chase of the Bismarck is played in turns, each representing nearly five hours of real time. In each turn, both players secretly move any or all ships and air units under their command on their own search board. Each player may then call out zones in which he has enough search factors to locate his opponent’s ships. This is the “operational part of the game”.

If opposing ships are discovered to be in the same zone, they may proceed to combat on the Battle Board. This is the “tactical part of the game”.

The game ends if Bismarck is sunk, arrives at a friendly port or the last turn of the game (evening of May 29th) has been played.

If you are interested in The Chase of the Bismarck – Operation Rheinübung 1941, you can order a copy for $119.00 from the VUCA Simulations website at the following link:

5. Fields of Fire: Battle of the Bulge from GMT Games

I remember when this game was announced and it about exploded Alexander’s brain. He simply loves the Fields of Fire System and has greatly enjoyed playing both of the entries thus far. In fact, he likes it so much that Vol 1 appears as #6 on his list of Top 10 Wargames. I have not yet played and it all seems very deep to me, as I like my solo games to be digestible and not require a 50 page technical manual to play. But that is just me! This new volume covers the 9th Infantry Regiment during the Battle of the Bulge in December and January 1944/1945 during World War II.

From the game page, we read the following:

The 9th Infantry Regiment “Manchus,” 2nd Infantry Division faced three weeks of intense combat from December 13th, 1944 to January 8th, 1945 as part of the Battle of the Bulge. This campaign covers those critical days. The Campaign consists of seven new missions featuring a new Terrain Deck for the forests, fields, and villages of the Ardennes. The counter sheet includes a U.S. heavy machine gun platoon, Bangalore torpedoes, anti-tank mines, wire entanglements, German tanks, assault guns, Panzergrenadiers, and Volksgrenadiers.

We left the “Manchus” of World War Two in Fields of Fire: Volume I at the close of the Normandy Campaign. The 2nd Infantry Division was rapidly moved to join the assault on the port city of Brest, in Brittany. The city was captured after heavy fighting from August 21st to September 18th. By that time, the German resistance elsewhere in France had collapsed, and the 2nd Infantry Division raced to Paris, arriving on September 29th. The rapid advance ended on October 4th when the Division entered the region just east of St. Vith, Belgium called the Schnee Eifel on the highly symbolic German border. The 2nd Infantry Division relieved the 4th and 28th Infantry Divisions, completing the relief on October 5th. Ahead lay the German border, defended by the Siegfried Line cutting across difficult terrain.

The “Manchus” were able to incorporate replacements and prepare for whatever would come next throughout October and November. This period saw frequent patrol activity but no major combat actions. On December 10th, the 2nd Infantry Division began a relief in place by the 106th Infantry Division. By the 11th, the relief was complete, and the Division gathered at Camp Elsenborn to prepare for the renewed offensive. The attack north through the Siegfried line would commence on December 13th.

I know that that description doesn’t give you a lot about the game as it focuses more on the history of the 9th so I have attached the following video review from Alexander for Fields of Fire Vol I:

Here is his review for Fields of Fire Vol. II:

And lastly, here is a link to his short 2 episode series on Learn to Play Fields of Fire:

If you are interested in Fields of Fire: The Bulge Campaign, you can order a copy for $16.00 on the GMT Games website at the following link (but hurry because it is charging and shipping soon and the price will increase):

6. Battles for the Shenandoah: A Death Valley Expansion from GMT Games

Great Battles of the American Civil War is a long tenured series that seems to have a great following. Anytime a new volume is introduced, it seems to shoot up the P500 list and makes the cut fairly quickly. Why is that? It could be the tension the game generates through its Fog of War mechanics. It also cold be the large number of tactical options a player may call upon. Some really like the scale and the map detail. And the system creates some wild swings of fortune and always creates a compelling drama. This volume is not a new battle, but simply an expansion of the battles covered in Death Valley from 2019.

From the game page, we read the following about the four full battles that are included:

McDowell, May 8, 1862 McDowell is considered the first battle of Stonewall Jackson’s 1862 Valley Campaign. After his loss at Kernstown, Confederate General Thomas J. “Stonewall” Jackson retreated up the Shenandoah Valley, finally stopping at Swift Run Gap to rebuild his army. By May of 1862, the threat from the north had diminished when two of the three Union divisions under General Nathaniel Banks were redeployed to support the Union advance on Richmond. However, there was another Union force, led by Brigadier General Robert H. Milroy, approaching the critical town of Staunton from the west. Jackson planned to drive the Union from the Shenandoah Valley and help relieve the pressure on Richmond by consolidating several scattered Confederate forces and defeating the two Union armies in detail. The first step was to move his army to join Brigadier General Edward “Alleghany” Johnson’s Army of the Northwest and defeat Milroy. The Confederate armies were consolidated on May 6 and begun advancing on Milroy’s Union force. Milroy retreated before them until May 8th, when he was reinforced with a brigade under Brigadier General Robert C. Schenck. That afternoon, the aggressive Milroy turned to attack the Confederate forces arriving on the heights overlooking the hamlet of McDowell.

2nd Winchester, June 13, 14, and 15, 1863 2nd Winchester is the battle that cleared the way for Robert E. Lee’s Gettysburg Campaign. In June of 1863, General Robert E. Lee finalized his plans for his second invasion of the north. The supply line was to be routed through the lower Shenandoah Valley, then primarily occupied by a Union garrison at Winchester with smaller garrisons at Berryville and Martinsburg. Lee assigned the task of clearing the Valley to Lieutenant General Richard S. Ewell, now in command of II Corps after Jackson’s death at Chancellorsville in May.

The Union garrison at Winchester consisted of the 8500 men of the 2nd Division, VIII Corps, commanded by Major General Robert H. Milroy. Milroy had made extensive improvements to the fortifications around Winchester and was confident that he could hold the position against anything the Confederates could throw at him. He was so confident that he ignored orders to abandon Winchester. On June 13, he discovered that Ewell had arrived.

Piedmont, June 5, 1864 Piedmont was the first Union victory in the Valley since Kernstown in 1862. The Confederate loss compelled Lee to send Lieutenant General Jubal Early’s II Corps to retake the Shenandoah Valley, effectively ending any hope Lee may have had for offensive operations around Richmond. After New Market, Union Major General Franz Sigel was replaced with the more aggressive Major General David Hunter, who made another move up the Valley with a larger and better organized army of 12,000 men. Hunter’s move caught the Confederates by surprise. Initially, the only opposition was a brigade of Confederate cavalry led by Brigadier General John D. Imboden. Every able-bodied man in the area was called to the Confederate colors, including miners and militia reservists. Two brigades of infantry under Brigadier General William E. “Grumble” Jones and a cavalry brigade led by Brigadier General John C. Vaughn were rushed by rail from the Trans-Allegheny Department. The combined Confederate force, commanded by Grumble Jones, numbered about 5000 men. On June 5th, the Confederate cavalry skirmished with the leading Union cavalry, delaying the Union advance long enough so that Grumble Jones could deploy his newly arrived troops and begin fortifying a new position near the hamlet of Piedmont. Hunter’s infantry arrived at this new line around noon.

Cool Spring, July 18, 1864 Cool Spring is a battle from Jubal Early’s 1864 Valley Campaign. During his retreat from the drive on Washington, Early moved into the Shenandoah Valley through Snicker’s Gap and crossed the Shenandoah River at Castleman’s Ferry. His Union pursuers, formations from VI Corps, XIX Corps, and the Army of West Virginia led by Major General Horatio G. Wright, were close behind. Brevet Major General George Crook, at the head of Wright’s column, was ordered to “cross if practicable and attack” with his Army of West Virginia. When a cavalry probe of Castleman’s Ferry was easily repulsed, it was decided to move downstream, cross the Shenandoah River at Island Ford, and then turn south to catch the Confederate defenders of Castleman’s Ferry in flank. Crook’s 1st Division, led by Colonel Joseph Thoburn, began the crossing in the middle of the afternoon after waiting for the lead division of VI Corps to arrive in support. The fords appeared to be lightly defended by the Confederates, but a captured skirmisher revealed that the divisions of Brigadier General Gabriel Wharton and Major General Robert Rodes were nearby. The lateness of the Union move surprised Early, but he had issued orders the night before to contest any Union crossing, and Wharton and Rodes were both moving within the hour.

As was the focus of the Death Valley design, this game reflects the development of the cavalry and the changes in infantry and artillery organization and tactics from 1862 through 1864.

If you are interested in Battles for the Shenandoah: A Death Valley Expansion, you can order a copy for $35.00 on the GMT Games website at the following link:

7. Time of Wars: Eastern Europe 1590-1660 from Strategemata

I am always on the look out for new games from smaller publishers. I don’t want to fill this Wargame Watch feature with the games that everyone knows about. I want to find new and interesting subjects and companies to share. This month, I found a very interesting looking game from a small company called Strategemata that focuses on wars in Eastern Europe during the late 1500’s and mid 1600’s called Time of Wars: Eastern Europe 1590-1660. I can’t help but think that this game might have been influenced by the Levy & Campaign Series from GMT Games with the time period and with the focus on logistics in the picture used on the cover.

From the game page, we read the following:

Time of Wars is a multiplayer card driven game. Players are on the head of five superpowers in Eastern Europe – the Polish – Lithuanian Commonwealth, the Tsardom of Russia, the Ottoman Empire, the Kingdom of Sweden and the Holy Roman Empire. Minor states are also present – Denmark, Brandenburg, Moldova, Wallachia, Transylvania and Crimean Khanate.

The game covers the turn of XVI and XVII centuries. The period was rich in famous characters (rulers and commanders) and critical events – for example the Time of Troubles in the Tsardom, the Thirty Years War in the Reich, Swedish “Deluge” in the Commonwealth. All these and much more are smoothly incorporated during gameplay.

The heart of the game are five decks of cards – one for each superpower.

During gameplay there is a lot of interaction between players. They can declare wars or make alliances as effect of secret negotiations.

Won battles and wars are important, but players must take care about condition of their own states as well. In the game are shown factors like economy, domestic policy, military level and religion. All of them can affect specified players’ actions.

If you are interested in Time of Wars: Eastern Europe 1590-1660, you can order a copy for $88.00 from the Strategemata website at the following link:

8. Tercio de la Muerte: The Battle of the Ebro River, July-August, 1938 from High Flying Dice Games

Lesser gamed subjects are covered very well and affordably by the folks over at High Flying Dice Games. This month, their newest offering takes a look at the The Battle of the Ebro River in Spain in 1938 as a part of the Spanish Civil War in a game called Tercio de la Muerte: The Battle of the Ebro River, July-August, 1938.

From the game page, we read the following:

1938 went from bad to worse for the Republican cause in Spain. Successes the previous year at Guadalajara, Teruel and Belchite were undone by Nationalist victories that overran Vizcaya as well as continued and massive military support from Nazi Germany and fascist Italy. Madrid was finally cut off and fell in the early summer and many outside of Spain felt the cause was lost. However, there was some hope in the Republican enclave centered on Barcelona. A new and friendly government came to power in France that reopened shipments of badly needed arms and supplies, and new shipments of arms from the Soviet Union successfully made it past the Nationalist blockade, reinvigorating the Republican forces still in the field. A larger war in Europe was increasingly apparent, and it was hoped that if the Republican forces could hold out long enough, they could be part of this larger conflict against fascism. As such, the Republican military decided upon a bold offensive across the Ebro River to retake ground in Valencia, as well as demonstrate that all was not lost.

If you are interested in Tercio de la Muerte: The Battle of the Ebro River, July-August, 1938, you can order a copy for $20.95 from the High Flying Dice Games website at the following link:

9. Horse & Musket Volume V: Age of Napoleon from Hollandspiele

There is always good stuff coming out of Hollandspiele and with their popular Horse & Musket Series there is the new 5th Volume called Age of Napoleon. This new volume is chocked full of tons of scenarios and also has some new rules.

From the game page, we read the following:

This is the fifth main volume in Sean Chick’s Horse & Musket Series, and it’s the one you’ve all been waiting for! Horse & Musket V: Age of Napoleon brings us the man and the battles that defined an era and that continue to ignite the popular imagination to this day. As usual, we’ve got a set of twenty scenarios drawing from battles both famous and obscure – both the brilliant victories and the tragic disasters. These are drawn from every period of Bonaparte’s career, plus a few from the War of 1812 raging across the ocean.

Naturally there are new Scenario Special Rules and a whole host of optional nationality rules to give you the flavor and detail that you want from this colorful and dynamic era. Over fifty unique named leader counters are provided – a record for the series.

If you are interested in Horse & Musket Volume V: Age of Napoleon, you can order a copy for $50.00 from the Hollandspeile website at the following link:

This game is an expansion and you will need Horse & Musket: Dawn of an Era to play this game.

10. A Greater Victory: South Mountain, 1862 from Revolution Games

Recently, we have really been into American Civil War games and just played A Most Fearful Sacrifice: The Three Days of Gettysburg from Flying Pig Games designed by the fantastic Hermann Luttmann. This is another of his games that looks really good and luckily is currently on sale.

From the game page, we read the following:

A Greater Victory (South Mountain,1862) features two small, quick playing scenarios (Fox’s Gap and then the actions around Frosttown), along with a long scenario covering the full day’s engagement. Each scenario has its own Fog-of-War table to more accurately reflect that particular phase of the battle.

The Order-of Battle has not relied upon customary “paper strength”, but a more accurate number of effectives for each regiment and brigade, so expect some surprises here.

Taking advantage of the proven Blind Swords System, AGV has been injected with abundant history while still offering players a plethora of choices as to where and how to deploy their troop formations. Being heavily outnumbered, the Confederates must conduct a skillful defense while the Union will have to effectively coordinate their powerful brigades over brutal terrain. With the climatic battle of Antietam just three days distant, casualties at South Mountain are also an important consideration.

I want to point out that I’ve also focused the design to be an excellent solitaire study, made possible by the historically desperate position that DH Hill found himself – from forgotten rear guard to frontline army savior.

The single map (by Edmund Hudson) and counters (by Charlie Kibler) are truly excellent, and I also wanted to publicly thank Roger Miller from Revolution for his outstanding support of this project since its inception. It’s been a lot of fun to work on, and there’s much more to come!

If you are interested in A Greater Victory: South Mountain, 1862, you can order a copy for $65.00 from the Revolution Games website at the following link:

Thanks for reading along this month. I am very excited about a lot of these games and really look forward to playing them. Please let me know if you know of a new pre-order game, Kickstarter or new release that I missed.