Multiman Publishing offers a free board game of the Battle of Epinosa (Nov. 10 – 11, 1808).
A Fair Battlefield is a free print and play boardgame set in a
pseudo-Napoleonic era. To win, you must push the opposing army back or outmaneuver it, so that your own army can advance and eventually carry The Flag into the other player’s territory. Meanwhile, the opponent can engage you in battles to stop your advancement and try to take control of The Flag.
In A Fair Battleground, skillful deployment and maneuvering is more important than raw impact, but typical winning tactical moves of the era like attacking the opposing armies from behind are forbidden. Asymmetry between players is given not by a different mix of forces or objectives, but rather by the interplay of two pairs of opposing roles (Advancing vs Contending and Attacker vs Defender) that the two players take and exchange during the game. These roles determine both what the players can do and when they can do it, as well as which of the different armies are more useful to each of them.
Battle resolution is basically luck-less, but a simple optional rule that adds a random factor is provided for players who prefer luck-based systems.
La Bataille Premier ME 11111 is a free print and play wargame of Napoleonic warfare. From the introduction:
This document has been provided for the use of all players who strive to enjoy the multiplayer effort of participating in the Age of Napoleon. Yet the rules are flexible enough to facilitate one-on–one play for smaller scenarios and battles—especially corps versus corps engagements.
The authors of this script believe this drama can best be played in the recreation of larger battles, like Austerlitz and Eylau, in which there are a number of commanders for each side. If you are playing with just one other player; or just trying to familiarize yourself with the system; or even playing solitaire, then try your hand with one of the smaller engagements like Auerstadt or Halle. As you gain more confidence with the system, then you may want to escalate to the larger multi-player games where you will be able to experience the intrigue and symphonic dynamics inherent to La Bataille.
This is your script to become a character in a play and the theater is a battlefield in Europe during the early 19th Century. The emotions of tragedy and comedy; glory and humiliation; envy and self-sacrifice; and jealousy and compassion; are an important part of the politics and wars of the period. The authors passionately believe the interaction of human players is the only way to create this drama.
Here’s a video of a three divisions of a Napoleonic British Army done in 1:1 scale. Amazing.
Gamers (like me) of a certain age will remember the old James Dunnigan game Napoleon At Waterloo. It’s a small, but interesting board game that was given away to S&T subscribers, and also by many game stores — I got mine for free on a “games day.”
You can now download this classic for free. Maybe it can be used to introduce a new generation to the joys of chit and hex games.