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"Best Simple Ruleset?" Topic

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11 Sep 2018 3:47 p.m. PST
by Editor in Chief Bill

  • Removed from TMP Poll Suggestions board
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Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian27 Dec 2017 9:54 p.m. PST

What is the best miniature wargaming ruleset which is also simple?

Personal logo COL Scott ret Supporting Member of TMP27 Dec 2017 9:59 p.m. PST

Junior General has rules for multiple periods and they are all somewhat similar. they are designed to use as a teaching aid with students so simple and straight forward.

Oh yeah and free!

McKinstry Fezian27 Dec 2017 10:55 p.m. PST

The Sword and the Flame.

sillypoint27 Dec 2017 11:00 p.m. PST

One Page Fantasy Skirmish by John David Slor
2/3 page actually, the other third has campaign and scenarios.
Gather a batch of figures, Dr. Who, Vikings whatever. Match the stats- have fun.
Crossfire Arty Conliffe- WW2.
On to Richmond- Paul Koch ACW- watch out for the house rules.

Hmmm… If I had to choose 1, it would be Crossfire.

Calico Bill27 Dec 2017 11:07 p.m. PST

One Hour Wargames by Neil Thomas. Simple, multiple scenarios, multi-era, and great fun.

Rich Bliss27 Dec 2017 11:14 p.m. PST

Volley and Bayonet plays very simply.

ZULUPAUL Supporting Member of TMP28 Dec 2017 3:47 a.m. PST


robert piepenbrink Supporting Member of TMP28 Dec 2017 4:48 a.m. PST

Hmm. I'd have put OTR and TSATF at moderate complexity, and "Rules by Ral" and "Charge! for Dummies" as simple--an upper limit of four typed pages. And if I had to pick one, it would be CFD.

FusilierDan Supporting Member of TMP28 Dec 2017 5:10 a.m. PST

The Portable Wargame by Bob Cordery

Personal logo mrwigglesworth Supporting Member of TMP28 Dec 2017 5:26 a.m. PST

A Fistful of Lead. War Engine / Shock Force.

Dynaman878928 Dec 2017 5:33 a.m. PST

Those one or two page rulesets that a member here maintains. Very good stuff.

Whirlwind28 Dec 2017 6:07 a.m. PST

If DBA makes the cut for simple, then DBA.

If not, everything by Neil Thomas with a special thumbs up for his Simplicity in Practice from Battlegames 23.

lkmjbc328 Dec 2017 6:43 a.m. PST

Volley & Bayonet…

Joe Collins

arthur181528 Dec 2017 6:46 a.m. PST

Another vote for Bob Cordery's Portable Wargame.

M C MonkeyDew28 Dec 2017 8:34 a.m. PST

Charge! can be played from memory after a game or two. Period tactics flow from the rules rather than being forced upon the player.

Napoleonic Wargaming for Fun if you are looking for a bit of simple simulationism from skirmish to army level gaming.

23rdFusilier Supporting Member of TMP28 Dec 2017 8:44 a.m. PST

A most interesting thread with very good suggestions. Agree on volley and bayonet.

I would also like to suggest the Fife and Drum miniatures rule sets. The ones on Seven Years War and Rev War are very good. I had adapted them for War of 1812 and they provide a very nice game. I would also like to add David Raybin's Charge of The Light Brigade rules. Great game, easy to learn.

Andy ONeill28 Dec 2017 8:47 a.m. PST

Isn't that true of many rulesets once you know them though?
I rarely look stuff up when running sg2ww2.
Even rules which involve complicated tables with column shifting and whatnot can be fairly simple to play.
So long as the tables fit on a few quick reference cards, looking up stuff can be fairly simple.

Jozis Tin Man Supporting Member of TMP28 Dec 2017 9:06 a.m. PST

One Hour Wargames or Portable Wargame. Elegant designs, easy to get beginners to play, and very adaptable.

parrskool28 Dec 2017 9:37 a.m. PST

One Hour Wargames, by Neil Thomas mst definitely. or Pz8 portfolio of free rules for several periods.

Ed Mohrmann Supporting Member of TMP28 Dec 2017 9:55 a.m. PST

Brom's rules as written and variants by the Jackson
Gamers (ACW, Colonial, AWI, WWII low-level (platoon
versus Platoon) infantry, Old West, Napoleonic, Ancients
(Romans versus Gauls).

RudyNelson28 Dec 2017 10:06 a.m. PST


roving bandit Supporting Member of TMP28 Dec 2017 10:07 a.m. PST

Must agree with the One Hour Wargames book.

If I was to lose everything, gaming wise, this would be my first thing to replace.

mad monkey 128 Dec 2017 10:41 a.m. PST


Personal logo miniMo Supporting Member of TMP28 Dec 2017 11:00 a.m. PST

The Rules According to Ral.

Wins by miles!

Bandolier Supporting Member of TMP28 Dec 2017 2:53 p.m. PST

Fife and Drum AWI and SYW rules by Der Alte Fritz.
They are the 'best' simple rules I've played.

Loose Files and American Scramble are also fun and simple.

evilgong Supporting Member of TMP28 Dec 2017 3:25 p.m. PST


Mick the Metalsmith28 Dec 2017 3:45 p.m. PST


slugbalancer28 Dec 2017 3:48 p.m. PST

KISS Rommel.

Personal logo Herkybird Supporting Member of TMP28 Dec 2017 4:09 p.m. PST

Simple can mean many different things to different people, and 'best' is very subjective, I doubt a consensus will be reached in this topic!

sneakgun28 Dec 2017 4:41 p.m. PST

We used to display our plastic soldiers then shoot rubber bands at them….

platypus01au28 Dec 2017 5:50 p.m. PST


manyslayer28 Dec 2017 8:29 p.m. PST

The Song of Blades series is one of my faves for its simplicity while still offering diverse games.

I haven't tried it yet but the various FUBAR rules look like a lot of fun.

Ivan DBA29 Dec 2017 12:20 a.m. PST

Space Hulk

Personal logo Bobgnar Supporting Member of TMP29 Dec 2017 10:45 p.m. PST

Dba is not simple for the first time reader. I have played it since 1991 and still get confused :-)

If someone had a teacher it would be fantastic as a simple game. It is the best wargame rules around.

My local group which has teenagers as well as adults Thinks that Ganesha Are quite easy to learn, if that's what simple means. We have picked up song of advanced blades and heroes, flashing steel, flying lead, chariot racing, quite easily

Shardik30 Dec 2017 12:16 a.m. PST

To the strongest

UshCha30 Dec 2017 4:43 a.m. PST

DBA is proably about as simple as it gets before becoming no more than just a games. Even then I would not consider it as a particularly good example of a war game. DBM is to me, about as simple as it gets while being a credible wargame. Mush less and its draughts with minis.

Personal logo etotheipi Sponsoring Member of TMP30 Dec 2017 11:52 a.m. PST

Well, I'd have to go with Quick Intermediate Level Skirmish (QILS). In several years, I have only once seen one plyer try to play the rules instead of the scenario (which makes a game good in my estimate) – he lost poorly. Other than that, people talk tactics of the situation instead of the rules after about three turns (which makes it simple in my book).

josta5906 Jan 2018 2:02 p.m. PST

I agree on One Hour Wargames being the first thing I'd replace, especially for its scenarios. Also another vote for Corderey's Portable Wargames.

Oldgrumbler Supporting Member of TMP20 Jan 2018 12:52 a.m. PST

DBA. Of course it is confusing, but simple.

Legion 420 Jan 2018 8:20 a.m. PST

Simple seems to be in the eye of the beholder(s), at times. Based on what some "wants" from a wargame.

Gennorm25 Jan 2018 5:24 a.m. PST


Prince Lupus11 Feb 2018 9:19 a.m. PST

Kiss Rommel, Crossfire, Volley and Bayonet, Charge.

Thomas Thomas26 Feb 2018 2:03 p.m. PST

I put an ultra simple version of DBX in Knights and Knaves. As simple as Neil Thomas' 1 hour wargames but expandable into a full medieval modernized DBX game.

I taught my then 8 year old son the basics of DBX using the basic game in A Game of Knights and Knaves and he's gone on to win DBA tournaments (but still greatly prefers Knights and Knaves).

Thomas J. Thomas
Fame and Glory Games

Personal logo Toy Soldier Green Supporting Member of TMP09 Mar 2018 8:22 p.m. PST

One Hour Wargames
The Portable Wargame

dantheman Supporting Member of TMP12 Sep 2018 3:13 p.m. PST

Voted other as Neil Thomas rules are the b st I found for a simple introduction

Old Contemptibles Supporting Member of TMP13 Sep 2018 7:19 a.m. PST


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