Wednesday, 5 June 2013

The combat rules for Eagle Games’ The American Civil War game

During my recent cruise I found time to read the rules from my recently-acquired copy of Eagle Games’ THE AMERICAN CIVIL WAR. The game is mainly a strategic-level recreation of the American Civil War, but it has one interesting difference from similar games I have looked at … battles between the opposing sides are actually decided by the use of a tactical wargame-within-a-wargame.

In the Basic Rules, the figures that are come into contact are removed from the main playing board to a simple battlefield that can be drawn on a piece of A4, foolscap, or A3-sized paper or card. The layout for the battlefield looks like this:

In the more complex Standard and Advanced rules, the battlefield looks like this:


Major Battle

In both instances the players set up their forces with a screen between them (shades of H G Wells here!) and place them in their battle line or reserve areas. (In the Standard and Advanced rules they also chose whether to fight a skirmish or major battle and whether to place their troops the centre or flanks sections of the battle or reserve areas.)

The rules for fighting the battles are very simple, and a battle is won when one side or the other has eliminated all of the enemy troops in their opponent’s battle line (the Basic rules) or have broken through their opponent's battle line (the Standard and Advance rules).

I have yet to play-test these combat rules, but I hope to be able to do so in the near future.


  1. Bob, I've seen similar ideas in other contexts, but this looks interesting, not least because of the differing levels available. I look forward to reading about your playtest in due course.
    It would, I think, be quite simple to overlay (if that is the right term) the various zones onto a PW style gridded board.
    Best wishes,

  2. Arthur1815,

    There is an American game entitled SQUARES that seems to be somewhat similar in design.

    I thought that a system like this might be ideal for 'campaign in a day' (or even a 'campaign in an afternoon/evening') games.

    I must admit that I had not thought about overlaying the zones onto a squared PORTABLE WARGAME board ... but it does make a lot of sense to do so. What an excellent idea!

    All the best,