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"Who contributed to development American wargaming" Topic

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HistoryWargaming14 Oct 2017 1:01 p.m. PST

As part of the History of Wargaming Project I am working with Duke and Jim Getz on a book about documenting the early development of miniature wargaming in America

I am now trying an impossible task, trying to work out who else I should mention in the book. So who else should I mention?

• Founders: Scruby (rules, War Games Newsletter, figures)

• Legends: Duke Seifried (figures, rules, demo games at shows etc…), Fletcher Pratt (Naval), Joe Morschauser (author), James Dunnigan (SPI)

• The dominant or the standard in different eras- Fred Vietmeyer (innovations), Scotty Bowden (books/ Empire rules), Jim Getz (rules), Bob Coggins, Gary Gygax (D+D)

• Well-known and national influencers- Dick Bryant, Wally Simon, Hal Thinglum (editor), Ray Johnson, Jean Lochet, Larry Brom, Sam Mustafa, Bob Jones, Pat Condray, Gene McCoy, Frank Chadwick (board game designer)

• Individual contributions in their areas- Jim Arnold, Dave Waxtel, Lou Zocchi, Mike Reese/Leon Tucker, John Hill (large following and very popular games at conventioins), Don Lowry, Arty Conliffe, Ned Zuparko (writing/ researcher etc.),
• Ahead of their time: Michael Korns (Modern Wars in Miniature, roleplaying WWII), Dave Arneson (Blackmore campaign and D+D)

Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP14 Oct 2017 1:02 p.m. PST


Vintage Wargaming14 Oct 2017 1:20 p.m. PST

Norman Bel Geddes. Gerard de Gré. John C Candler. Charles Sweet. Would seem to be among the most important ones.

David Manley14 Oct 2017 1:36 p.m. PST

Larry Bond (Harpoon)

JohnBSnead Supporting Member of TMP14 Oct 2017 3:02 p.m. PST

Not sure when you are going to cut off for "early development", but Rich Hasenauer (Fire and Fury) is a name I would throw out as influential.

PJ ONeill14 Oct 2017 3:07 p.m. PST

I think that John Hill had a bigger influence on game design than he is given credit for.

FABET0114 Oct 2017 3:09 p.m. PST

Don't leave out the figure sculptors and manufacturing.

Ral Partha set the standard for miniatures back in the 70's Tom Meier is the obvious name that comes to mind, but Julie Guthrie and Bob Charrette shouldn't be overlooked.

Personal logo War Artisan Sponsoring Member of TMP14 Oct 2017 4:31 p.m. PST

. . . and this is not crossposted to the History of Wargaming board because . . . ?

Personal logo ColCampbell Supporting Member of TMP14 Oct 2017 5:16 p.m. PST

You mentioned Larry Brom in "Well Known and National Influencers" but his "The Sword and the Flame" rules have become one of the de facto standards in Victorian Colonial gaming and have spawned many variants over the years.


Ed Mohrmann Supporting Member of TMP14 Oct 2017 6:05 p.m. PST

Charlie Tarbox Ted Haskell

Big Red Supporting Member of TMP14 Oct 2017 7:08 p.m. PST

Paul Koch – On to Richmond Father and Grandfather to Fire and Fury and its many spinoffs.

L.L. Gill – General Quarters and its many spinoffs.

S. Craig Taylor – Wooden Ships and Iron Men, Rally 'round the Flag and many, many more rules and games.

Major William Martin RM Inactive Member14 Oct 2017 9:19 p.m. PST

The Manufacturers, without whom we would have had to order everything from the UK: Steve Carpenter, Minifigs USA; Jim Oden and Cleve Burton, Heritage Models and Yaquinto Printing (Later included Duke Seifried and S. Craig Taylor); Glenn Kidd, Ral Partha Enterprises; Stan Johansen; Stan Johansen Miniatures; Andrew Chernak and Ray Rubin, Grenadier Miniatures; Forest Brown, Martian Metals, Inc.;

The Authors: Ken Ray, Scot Bowden's early partner on Cour de Leon, Minuteman, Johnny Reb and the first edition of Empire; Rob Smith, a later partner on Empire's ACW rules; Scott Bizar, various ERB rules and guru for Fantasy Games Unlimited; Curt Johnson, frequent contributor to The Courier and Gorget & Sash magazines, Bill Protz, author of Wargamers Guide to the ECW, Drums of War Along the Mohawk, and Batailles de l'Ancien Régime, and many, many more which I'm sure I'm forgetting.

Just sayin'

Jcfrog Supporting Member of TMP15 Oct 2017 3:08 a.m. PST

Russ Dunnaway: afgordable minis in mass, with lots of variants, and even some jokes in packs.

CATenWolde Inactive Member15 Oct 2017 4:31 a.m. PST

You can't leave out Rich Hasenauer – quite a surprising oversight. F&F continues to be a (the?) dominant force in ACW wargaming after more than 20 years, now including the regimental level, and the F&F system of gaming is probably one of the most copied for various other periods. I would rank him as equal to Larry Brom within their own periods, both of them ultimately more successful and long-lived than Bowden's Empire tradition in Napoleonics, and Hasenauer being more influential outside his main period.

In terms of actual games being played (love them or not) from the 90's onwards, Conliffe for everything from Ancients to WWII, Bowden and Taylor & Coggins for Napoleonics, Brom for Colonials, Hill and Hasenauer for ACW.

One of the most unsung but truly innovative American game designers is Jeff Knudsen, whose Napoleonic Command preceded the move to more abstracted formation level combat by a decade or more (and is still more elegant than most current attempts). On the other side of the spectrum, William Keyser's From Valmy to Waterloo were the ultimate development of the 90's Empire-inspired detailed approach to the period – surprisingly playable despite their depth.

mildbill15 Oct 2017 4:32 a.m. PST

Todd Fisher
Rick Nance
Both had huge influence in organizing and growing wargaming in the Midwest and south.

Dark Fable Sponsoring Member of TMP15 Oct 2017 5:26 a.m. PST

Jack Scruby was an early contributor to the American wargames scene, I suppose Gary Gygax/Dave Arneson, Steve Jackson, Joe Corsaro and Scott Bowden as well

Marc33594 Supporting Member of TMP15 Oct 2017 6:38 a.m. PST

You can't mention James Dunnigan and SPI without covering Redmond Simonsen artist, game designer and art director for SPI. His influence on gaming graphics and even such mundane things as rules layouts or game covers is still being felt in the hobby. Definitely under Legends category.

And for games and commentary Richard Berg is another must have. I would argue would fit in the Legends category as well.

Garryowen Supporting Member of TMP15 Oct 2017 7:38 a.m. PST

I guess the real question is what is meant by, "the early development of miniature wargaming in America".

I would not think something that thirty years ago is in that term. I have been playing historical miniatures wargames since the at least 1960. That was 57 years ago. I suppose it probably started with published rules and figures made for wargaming in the 50s. That is 60 years ago.

If we look at a hobby that has been around for at least 60 years, thirty years ago is middle aged. I would say the first twenty years MIGHT be early, the second twenty middle and the last twenty recent.

We can all name great contributors, and they may seem early to us if they were around when we got in the hobby, but that does not make them early in terms of the hobby.

Maybe HistoryWargaming who started the thread could be more specific as to the time period he considers early. That might eliminate some responses that are not what he is looking for.


CATenWolde Inactive Member15 Oct 2017 7:40 a.m. PST

That's true … I responded to the title of the thread, which is just "development of …", while the first post refers to "the early development of …"

Ed Mohrmann Supporting Member of TMP15 Oct 2017 7:55 a.m. PST

'early development' is why I mentioned Ted Haskell.

If anyone has access to the 'Hackswell Archive' and
could provide a link, it'd be illuminating. 'Hackswell'
is not a typo BTW.

Sadly, I no longer do.

Ed Mohrmann Supporting Member of TMP17 Oct 2017 2:31 a.m. PST

Add Blair Stonier and Henry Bodenstedt to the list.

Each was instrumental in 'spreading the word' in the
Northeast back in the day, Blair in Pennsylvania and
Henry in New Jersey (he ran a hobby shop in Monmouth)

HistoryWargaming20 Oct 2017 12:20 p.m. PST

This is very useful helping me to frame the terms of reference for the book!

Russ Lockwood21 Oct 2017 9:58 a.m. PST

Greg from GHQ…

And presumably this is pre-internet era?

Ottoathome Inactive Member21 Oct 2017 12:34 p.m. PST

You do know that Jon Peterson in "Playing at the World" has beat you to the punch.

NedZed28 Oct 2017 1:30 p.m. PST

HistoryWargaming published this in 2012:


Some battle reports from The Hackswell Archive can be found in Pat Condray's old magazine The Armchair General.

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