Free Wargame Rules

Over a great many years, I have been writing simple and easy sets of rules for quick games. Some of these have been for one-off club games at Chestnut Lodge Wargames Group, some for more public events, like special events at the National Army Museum.
Generally speaking, these most of these game rules assume a reasonable familiarity with the genre of toy soldier wargames.  They adopt some shorthand, and usually (though not always) consist only of the main tables and rules necessary for a basic game.  They do not usually contain reams of legalistic conditional statements or rules-lawyer proof systems.  They are intended for use between civilised people, as a guide rather than absolute arbiter in every situation.

It's all free, and for your enjoyment.  However, you mustn't resell or otherwise commercially use these rules - and if you use or publish elsewhere any of this material, please remember to credit the author, and note that even though they are free, where appropriate I and other authors represented here retain copyright to the rules and game designs.
Cheers.  Jim Wallman

In that spirit, just click to download, and see if they are of any interest.

If you download and use any of these rules, why not email me to let me know how you get on. I welcome comments, suggestions for improvements and battle reports.

PLUS! If you don't want to spend time downloading, you can order the entire collection of over FORTY RULE SETS plus all the additional maps, briefings and playsheets on CD, posted to your address for just £5.99 including postage. And you can pay securely using paypal.

Rush me the fabulous jimwallman.org.uk wargame rules CD:

Unless stated otherwise, all the files are in PDF format. If you don't have Adobe Acrobat, get it here

 

ANCIENT | MEDIEVAL | 16th CENTURY | 18th CENTURY | 19th CENTURY | WORLD WAR 1 |
WORLD WAR 2 | LATE 20th CENTURY | 21st CENTURY | FANTASY | SCIENCE FICTION

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Game Title

File size
Period / Rating

General Description

Ancient
Field of Honour
Jan 2007
283k
Medieval/Ancient Basic
This is a simple two player card game that is an abstract depiction of two ancient armies facing each other on the battlefield. It can either be played as a simple two player card game, or as a sub-game to a more complex wargame - say a campaign where you wish to resolve minor battles without resorting to setting out model soldiers. Each game only takes a few minutes.
         

Valiant Britons
2005

404k

Ancient

Intermediate

A battle game involving combat between ancient British Tribes in the pre-Roman era. Great emphasis on role playing as much as tactics. Ideally for use with 15mm figures, but any scale will do.
         

BRITONS
Nov 2004

156k
Ancient Basic
Very simple, one brain cell rules for skirmishes between rival bands of ancient celtic Britons. Not a Roman in sight! For 25mm figures.
         
Medieval

Medieval Battle Rules
1995

133k
Medieval
Intermediate
Brian Cameron's Medieval Battle Rules for 25mm figures.
         

Men at Arms
2003

609k

Medieval
Basic

One brain cell medieval skirmish rules for 25mm figures.
         

Aegir's Fire
2003

106k

Medieval
Intermediate

Viking campaign rules - usable with any set of skirmish rules and any scale, this set contains strategic rules for raiding, developing your viking crew and some exploring. Ideal for someone with lots of different figures from the period. Very good for a club campaign project.
         
16th Century

Heroic Samurai
Oct 2006 - Updated Jan 07

436k
Japan
Basic
Once brain cell wargame rules for small scale fighting typical of internecine clan warfare. For toy soldiers.
         
Katana To Yari
1998

 

313k
15th Cent Japan
Intermediate

Figure game of samurai skirmish battles - designed to allow small groups of fighters of varying skill to interact. Designed with the Japanese sword movie in mind - a well handled skilled samurai master can hack through a group of lesser warriors.  Quite long rules with a lot of scope for various weapons and troop types, but the basic principles are very simple and easy to pick up.

NEW 2011 - Russian language version! : Katana to Yari (Thanks to Denis Gabdulin for the translation)

         
La Felicissima Armada
1995 - Updated January 2012
202k
16th Century
Intermediate

A Spanish Armada tactical naval game - designed to use 1/144 scale plastic ships on a big floor model.

Revised and updated January 2012

         
18th Century
Over the Hills and Far Away UPDATE : Version 2.2 May 2011 291k

18th Century

Intermediate

Set in the 18th Centruy this is a campaign game for a group or club about the rivalries and actions around running regiments. Each player is a Colonel responsible for raising, equipping and leading his regiment - for honour, glory, and of course, profit.
         

Little Lambent Meteors
updated August 2006

774k
18th Century intermediate

Simple set of rules for 18th century rioting using 15mm figures.

LLM Scenario 'A Little London Riot'
Scenario Map
Scenario optional counters (if you don't want to use figures): Authorities | Rioters

         
OLD FRITZ
1992
33k
18th Century
Basic
The original 'One Brain Cell' rules for the 7 Years War in Europe.  Easy to play system for big battles with toy soldiers.
         
19th Century

En Avant En Masse!
August 2008

162k

Napoleonic

Intermediate

An expansion of the original En Avant! rules (below) this time allowing a player to control an entire division, and aimed at using either counters or 1/300 figures. Example divisional record card.

         
Science Versus Luck
1990
250k

19th Century

Intermediate

A game of doctrine, toysoldiers and matchsticks. Designed for club play and for around 8+ people, this game looks at defence procurement, doctrine development and includes a fun game involving toy soldiers and a matchstick cannon.
         

En Avant!
Updated Sept 2007

Napoleonic Basic

One Brain Cell Napoleonic war low level dice-free game designed for very fast play. Designed for 25mm figures for brigade-sized forces.

Play a brigade attack in about 20 minutes or less!

Includes order cards and status markers.

Player Rules
35k
Full Rules
148k
Order Cards
159k
Status markers
33k

Example infantry action

403k
         

Front Rank...Fire!
1978

34k

19th Century Colonial
Intermediate

Zulu War Skirmish level wargame rules for 25mm or 15mm figures. Simple, fast and very easy to play, suitable for actions involving 50-100 figures at a time.
         

Taking The Bull By The Horns
Updated May 2007

153k
19th Century Colonial
Intermediate

The Zulu War (1879) skirmish rules, designed for 1/300 models. Features command and control and morale, and intended for 1:1 representation of many of the 'battles' of the war.
PLUS Scenarios : 'Stalwart Foes (14k)' and 'Myer's Drift (31k)'

         
World War I / Interwar

Trench Assault
Sept 2008

149k

WW1

Basic

Simulation of the attack of a single Battalion across no-man's land in July 1916, demonstrating the problems of reaching the parapet before it can be effectively manned by the defenders. Suitable for any scale of figures from 1/300 to 25mm. See example playing area here. and example counters for those who don't have time to paint figures etc.
         

Crossing The Wire
Sept 2006

204k
WW1 Intermediate
Divisional level game about trench warfare at Brigade and divisional level using historical maps and counters. Can also be used with 1/300 scale miniatures. Also Example counters for 29th British Div (129k) and Map of Beamont Hamel battlefield (205k) for 1 July 1916
         

Red Army - White Guards
July 2007

3.0M
Mid 20th Century Intermediate
Figure game rules for the Russian Civil War by Graham Evans - originally designed for 15mm models and played on an offset square grid.
         

Send Not To Know
NEW : April 2012

1.2M Spanish Civil War Tactical

Tabletop battle game at brigade level of the Spanish Civil war by Graham Evans. Follow the development of these rules and other discussions on Graham's blog

Helpful game markers sheet is here

         

Military Memoirs
July 2007

1.3M
General / intermediate
A really entertaining dinner party game about military memoirs by Graham Evans. Basically its 'consequences' with a military bent. Much hilarity will result.
         
World War 2

BLITZ!
Nov 2006 - Updated Jan 2007

1.20M
WW2 Intermediate
An entirely new game that pits players against incendiaries and bombs in London during the Blitz of 1940-41. A skirmish level game for 25mm scale models and figures.
         

A Drop Too Many
2005

101k
WW2 Advanced
A novel game system known as a dialogue game - designed as an entertaining multiplayer game for experts. Includes the WW2 paratroops scenario, and explanation of how to run a dialogue game.
         

The Lionel Tarr Rules
1959

27k
WW2 Basic
The Lionel Tarr Modern Warfare Rules. Written sometime around 1959, these are as published in Don Featherstone's original 1962 book 'War Games' - retyped and made freely available to nostalgic wargamers everywhere.
         
OPCom
May 2011

WW2
Advanced

Operational Command - WW2 1944-5 European Theatre map game system. Designed for command post exercises with maps in the military style, with teams of players representing Divisional HQs.
Designed for multiplayer games of 6-100 players and works with real maps and counters. No hexes.

         

STONK
Updated Sept 2006

1.2M
WW2
Advanced
Wargame rules for WW2  (NW Europe theatre) designed for use with 1/300 models (though maps and counters would work as well).  Aimed at the operational game - representing combat for forces up to regimental / brigade group size.
         
ISLAND ASSAULT
1995
12k
WW2
Basic
A game for 1/300 models about landing in a Pacific Atoll in WW2.  Included stuff on keeping the troops supplied.
         

DESERT RATS
Updated July 2007

200k
WW2
Basic
Tank battles in the Desert in WW2.  Designed for 1/300 tanks and a sand-coloured cloth. A traditional armour bash game.
         
STREET FIGHTER
1994
WW2
Basic
Fighting in a built up area (FIBUA) in a city in WW2.   Includes a map suitable for 1/300 models.
Rules
13k
   
Example Map (jpg)
81k
   
         
HELL ON WHEELS
1986
81k
WW2
Advanced
Tank tactics in France in 1944.  Each playercommands a platoon of tanks and has to control it.  Command and control featurely heavily as you struggle to control the tanks platoon under fire - radios break down, tanks get lost or fire at the wrong time on the wrong target.
         
TANK DUEL
1983
HTML
WW2
Basic
A old set of rules for a very enjoyable game about tank vs tank duelling.  Needs a bit of setting up and 6-10 players - but is always a laugh! A team of players simulate the crew of a single tank!
         
Late 20th Century
Air Wars
1989 updated 2008
90k
20th Century
Intermediate

 

Straightforward and easy to play air to air combat in the Vietnam era - 1960's and 70's. Ideally needs a hex board and some models (though counters will do).

NEW June 2011! MIGCAP - the Air Wars Vietnam campaign rules

Damage cards

154k
         

CIVIL DISORDER
Updated to Version 3: May 2011

 

327k
20th Century
Intermediate

Wargame Rules for Rioting in City Streets.  Designed for table-top play with 25mm models, but could be played on a map with counters if desired.

New - added Jan 2006: download Scenario 1
Sample game counters if you don't want to use toy soldiers:

NEW 2011 - Updated Counter sheet 2011 (1mb pdf) Updated Vehicles sheet 2011 (201k pdf)

NEW 2011 - Russian language version (Version 2)! : Main rules | SF Briefing (Thanks to Denis Gabdulin for the translation)

         
21st Century
Decapitation
2003
21st Century
Basic
A back-to-back strategic map game based on a fantasy present-day scenario where a superpower tries to 'decapitate' an enemy regime by firing cruise missiles at the enemy head of state. Fortunately something like this could never happen in reality.
Game Rules
231k

Game map (jpg)

168k
         
GO! GO! GO!
2003
153k
21st Century
Basic
A figure game based on the idea of a first-person shooting computer game (in fact closely based on the excellent CounterStrike counter terrorism game).  But you don't need a computer network to play it, and headshot scripts and clipping cheats don't work!  So normal people can have some of the fun too.
         
         
Fantasy
         
Unheroic Samurai
New April 2012
219k
Samurai / Fantasy

One Brain Cell Rules for Fighting Undead Horrors in Classical Japan.

Skirmish level game allowing bands of samurai and their followers to engage in a life or death struggle with the dreaded O-yoma (or zombies to you and me). Designed for 25mm / 28mm figures.

         

Crouching Hero, Hidden Daggers
May 2011

72k

Ancient / Fantasy

Basic

A fantasy skirmish based on the more fantastical type of chinese martial arts movie. With characters inspired by the Water Margin. Simple rules, with action cards

Character cards | Basic Action Cards | Character Action Cards | Stand-up cardboard characters | Game board, Inn of Joy | Furniture for the Inn of Joy

         

Run?...Or Shoot?
Sept 2009

428k

Fantasy

Basic

Faced by a horde of charging zombies, do you run? or stand and shoot? Run?...Or Shoot? is a tactical wargame pitting a small group of survivors against hundreds of zombies. Aimed at 20mm/25mm models - and an ideal use for the famous "Bag o' Zombies" plastic figures. New May 2011 - ROS Scenario 'INFESTATION'
         

Fire At Will!
July 2007

177k

Fantasy

Basic

One Brain Cell Heroic Fantasy Wargame Rules for 6mm scale model armies. A development ofthe 'Follow Me Men! skirmish rules (see below) by Stephen Guilbert - who wanted a game you could play on a coffe table!  As with the originals these are designed to be simple and fast moving rules involving knights, orcs and mages and all that
Don't expect pages and pages of weapons and armour lists, loads of results tables, buckets of silly dice or complex record keeping.
This is an easy to operate game all about command, control and fast play gaming. All you need are the figures some cheap terrain and imagination.
NEW December 2009 LOOT THEN BURN Scenario

         

Pirates of Yendor Sea Battle Rules
2005

481k

Ancient / Fantasy

Intermediate

Naval battle game rules for fantasy (or ancient) battle. A development of Ed Smith's 'Greek Naval Warfare' rules of 1974. Suitable for ancient Greeks, Roman or Fanatsy battles
Used in the recent 'Pirates of Yendor megagame

Also Counter Sheet 1 | Counter Sheet 2 | Counter Sheet 3 | Order Cards

         
MONSTERS!
2002
Advanced Fantasy
A map game about giant dinosaurs and other monsters terrorising downtown Amsterdam. Designed for a large number of players(around 20-30) - though will work as a club project for about 6-8 players too.
Player Rules
642k
   
Game map (jpg)
244k
   

Game Control Notes

22k
   
         

War in Hell
2001

285k
Fantasy
Basic

Fantasy figure game deliberately degined to use any figure scale, of any historical period all at the same time - set around battles between unimaginable forces taking place in Hell.  Not entirely serious.

NEW! June 2011 :Brilliant new ITALIAN TRANSLATION from the lads at Chimerae Hobby Group

         


Follow Me, Men!

Updated Jan 2005

240k
Fantasy
Basic

One Brain Cell Heroic Fantasy Wargame Rules.  Designed to be simple, these are fast moving rules involving knights, orcs and mages and all that Don't expect pages and pages of weapons and armour lists, loads of results tables, buckets of silly dice or complex record keeping.

This is an easy to operate game all about command, control and fast play gaming. All you need are the figures some cheap terrain and imagination.

NEW December 2009 LOOT THEN BURN Scenario

         
         
Science Fiction
STINGRAY, STINGRAY
2001
66k
Sci-Fi
Intermediate
Wargame rules for futeristic undersea combat in the fantasy world of the famous Anderson universe.  For a hex-map and models.
         
FIRST CONTACT!
New! June 2011
312k
Sci-Fi
Intermediate
A role playing game about the first contact between alien cultures. Designed to be run by a game controller and 4 - 10 players. Do not read the materials if you intend to play!
         
Starship Marine
1975 - updated 2005
 
Sci-Fi
Basic
The original wargames rules for combat inside the corridors of a starship. See also www.theuniverse.org.uk
         
Starship Soldier
2005
 
Sci-Fi
Basic
An expansion of starship marine to cover skirmishes planetside. See also www.theuniverse.org.uk
         
Starship Strike
2010
 
Sci-Fi
Intermediate
Big fleet battles in space. See also www.theuniverse.org.uk
         
Humanity Will Prevail
1996 - updated 2010
 

Sci-Fi

Advanced

Campaign rules for a wide-ranging interstellar campaign, used for the long-running Universe Campaign. See also www.theuniverse.org.uk
         
Plan A
2010
 
Sci-Fi
Intermediate
Wargaming divisional-level combats planetside. Designed for manoevering formations of ground troops. See also www.theuniverse.org.uk
         
ON THE BOUNCE
1995
Sci-Fi
Basic
A set of tactical SF rules about hovertank combat in the late 21st century.  Still under development, and may be updated from time to time.
Rules
28k
Record sheets (zipped word)
16k
Mission Briefing
10k
'Enemy' Briefing
8k
Orbat sheet
8k
Article on the game's development
25k
         
         

Any comments queries or problems, don't hesitate to email me

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