Thursday, 9 July 2015

Rule sets for ancient war games.

Recently I have been trying out various rules  for ancient period war games. I tried out the old standby WRG Ancients 5th edition with my 15mm collection but found it dull so I had a couple of games of Hail Caesar and found it to be much more exciting. So I have decided to make it my game of choice when using my venerable 15mm soldiers.

This entails rebasing the toys of course and another dilemma or two, because like most wargamers I want to use them for other rules too, which brings me to DBA.

Earlier this year I bought the new shiny 3rd edition of DBA and while I found the rules mainly good I did not care for the look of the game with its small number of models. So I looked at using large bases but I did also find the speed of the game too fast, it seems to take longer to set up the terrain than to fight the battle.
So I went back to using 24 standard sized elements as I did for years when DBA first came out. This was better but I struggled with the fiddly positioning of the stands especially on terrain features so I put DBA onto a back burner for now.

For the Waterloo 200th anniversary I dug out Commands and Colors Napoleonics and missed the day because I hurt my back at work, but I got it played and several other scenarios which I thoroughly enjoyed. This led to the Ancients version coming out of the cupboard and I haven't stopped since!.

 I found this expansion at a very good price from IGUK and it made a fine fathers day present. I have played Roman Civil War, Rome against Gaul and Spartacus too. I love it!.
 Here are some of my Greeks.
 And Persians.
 A gentleman on Board Game Geek made some excellent downloadable special leader and Spartan army stickers.
And I painted some spare blocks white to make a small Spartan army. I do like to make something for nothing.

This got me thinking about DBA again and I now plan to put all of my 15mm collection onto 40mm square bases with the exception of some generals for Hail Caesar. One base would be a small unit and two to four a standard unit using Hail Caesar, so it would work well for that. For DBA well...
I'm thinking about making a square gridded board with 40mm squares and square hills and terrain features too, ( this is the influence of Commands and Colors ).
This would dispense with the fiddly positioning of elements and suit the base width unit of measure.
What do you think ?, Have any of you tried this?.


  1. My friend Ron has a table full of Hexon terrain which we normally use for modified Memoir WW2 games but also occasionally for other Borg games inc C&C Ancients using 25mm.
    see Roman vs Gaul
    I can't afford the Hexon and my homemade hex terrain was too wobbly so I use a square grid and homemade rules.


  2. I've actually combined elements of Hail Caesar and DBA in a simplified format for Ancients/Medievals. I've only played C&C once, and to be honest at the time I was not used to hex mats - being only accustomed to WAB at the time. Since then, I've played Ancient naval games with hexes and find the movement far more streamlined.

    1. A combination of HC and DBA sounds interesting Dean, I do like WAB and its spin off War and Conquest but prefer to play them in 28mm. So many rule sets, so little time!.