Thursday, 13 April 2017

Developing The Portable Wargame: An update

Despite a number of necessary diversions over the past few days (e.g. having the gas boiler services, taking my wife to the dentist etc.), I have been labouring away at my next book, DEVELOPING THE PORTABLE WARGAME.

At present the book contains three sets of rules. They are:
  • PORTABLE WARGAME: ANCIENTS rules
  • DEVELOPED PORTABLE WARGAME RULES: EARLY AND MID TWENTIETH CENTURY (These are a revised and expanded version on the rules in my first book, and are aimed at players who want to fight battles on larger tabletops and/or who want a bit more detail.)
  • PORTABLE WARGAME: AIR COMBAT rules (These are designed to be a stand-alone set of simple air combat rules that will work with the both versions of my PORTABLE WARGAME RULES: EARLY AND MID TWENTIETH CENTURY rules.)
I do not intend to provide full blow-by-blow battle reports for each set of rules in this book, but I will include illustrative examples of the various mechanisms.

I will keep regular blog readers aware of the progress I make on this book as and when it happens.

28 comments:

  1. Bob,
    Further developments of the PW are always welcome, but I wonder whether putting Ancients and 20th century rules together in the same book works well (though I suppose they do illustrate the range of history PW can cover).
    Looking through your draft Ancient rules I feel that Medieval and even Fantasy variants would be more appropriate companions in the same volume than WWI/II.
    The Air Combat rules will be a great addition. Will they include Zeppelins?
    Regards,
    Arthur

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    1. I cordially (Corderyly?) disagree. Did not the blessed Donald have three periods in his sacred writings? If anything, the next book ought to have a horse and musket variation. However, I am sure we can agree that the next book will be as well received as the first. Regards.

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    2. Arthur Harman,

      I see your point ... but as my objective is to show the flexibility of the PORTABLE WARGAME concept, I think I'll keep the contents as they are for the time being.

      As yet I haven't included Air Combat rules for Zeppelins ... but it is something for me to think about!

      All the best,

      Bob

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    3. Stephen Briddon,

      I took Donald Featherstone's original WAR GAMES book as the model for my first book, and as you point out, he covered three historical periods in that publication.

      You can use the nineteenth century rules (with a few minor adjustments) from my first book for the horse and musket era ... but I plan to write a PORTABLE NAPOLEONIC WARGAME book in the future. It will use the basic structure and mechanisms as the existing rules, but with a few period specific tweaks and changes.

      All the best,

      Bob

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  2. I will watch your progress with great interest. I'm still puttering about with the first book with my 54mm set up. It's not quite portable, the table is a 6x4 and my hexes are 6" across but hey. I like the sound of ancients though. Maybe this will give me an excuse for a new project.

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    1. Stephen Briddon,

      You are not alone in using my rules on a larger tabletop and with larger figures, and the latest book contains a developed set of 'modern' rules specifically designed for use on larger tabletops.

      All the best,

      Bob

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    2. Bob,

      I take your point. I suppose - in the longer term - it will be appropriate to publish a Complete Modern Portable Wargame containing the Basic, Expanded, Air Combat &c. rules.

      Regards,
      Arthur

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    3. Arthur Harman,

      I would like to publish a complete book about my Modern PW rules, and include both the Air Combat and Naval rules in it ... but that is very much a future project.

      All the best,

      Bob

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  3. Very much looking forward to the Ancients, and air warfare sounds most intriguing. I'm trying the first rule set with 2mm blocks of ACW figures on A4 printed paper grids using the scenarios from Neil Thomas's "One Hour Wargames".

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    1. Maudlin Jack,

      The Ancient rules are quite basic, as are the Air Combat rules ... but my play-testing of the various mechanisms seems to indicate that they work.

      A lot of people seem to be finding Neil Thomas's OHW scenarios work well with my rules ... just as I have done.

      All the best,

      Bob

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  4. "Portable Wargaming Campaigns" is a nice title for appropriately themed content. Just saying...for the third book in the series.

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    1. Justin Penwith,

      Its a possibility ... but I suspect that you might be seeing a THE PORTABLE WARGAME: ENGLISH CIVIL WAR and THE PORTABLE NAPOLEONIC WARGAME first.

      All the best,

      Bob

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    2. Surely your next book should be ADVANCED PORTABLE WARGAMES.

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    3. Stephen Briddon,

      That title was given serious consideration when I started writing this book ... but it seemed a bit too much like the title of Donald Featherstone's second book. Using it would have felt wrong.

      All the best,

      Bob

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  5. Bob,

    Glad to see that PW is continuing to move forward. I am looking forward to the Ancients/Medieval form, with an eye to using them for my slowly moving Mesoamerican project. A fantasy mod might be worthy as well...

    Greg

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    1. El Grego,

      Ancients is certainly on the cards, but for a Medieval version I might have to rely on someone else to draft the rules. As to a Fantasy version ... well who knows. As a long-term lover of all things Tolkien, it would seem to me that my Ancient rules (with a few tweaks) would probably be suitable for the combat side of things, but as to the magic ...

      All the best,

      Bob

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  6. Very much looking forward to seeing the ancient and medieval in particular. glad to hear the PW is progressing well.
    Alan

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    1. Tradgardemastare (Alan),

      The Ancient rules are awaiting proper play-testing, and they would not be too difficult to develop into a set of Medieval rules ... I think!

      As to PW ... well it seems to be gathering some enthusiastic adherents, so I think that I can say that solid progress is being made.

      All the best,

      Bob

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  7. Bob,
    If you need other playtesters I am more than willing.
    Alan

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    1. Tradgardmastare (Alan),

      Thanks very much for your kind offer. I will send copies of the drafts to you as soon as they are finished.

      All the best,

      Bob

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    2. I would also like to offer my services.

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    3. Stephen Briddon,

      Many thanks for your kind offer. I will add your name to the list.

      All the best,

      Bob

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  8. Outstanding news, Bob! And a June/July publish date? That is mighty fast! Looking forward to it. I'll have some input for your Ancients rules this weekend. I am planning to play a solo game with them tomorrow night.

    John

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    1. John,

      I like to set myself goals ... and a June/July publication date is an achievable one.

      I look forward to receiving your feedback in due course.

      All the best,

      Bob

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  9. Ancients and air combat - 2 interests of mine! This will be a must buy. Now I just need to prep my colonial figures so I can give the 19th century portable wargame a spin.

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    1. Kevin Kearney,

      Both sets of rules are as simple as I can make them, and are designed around the same basic rule mechanisms as the existing PW rules.

      All the best,

      Bob

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