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"Review of CS Grant's Campaign Books" Topic

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Personal logo Der Alte Fritz Sponsoring Member of TMP17 Feb 2019 7:58 a.m. PST

I have reviewed the six mini campaign books for 18th Century wargaming that were written by Charles S. Grant. Please click the link to my blog for the full review.



These are terrific books, each full of 5 to 6 scenarios that can be played either as independent games or as part of a campaign. All scenarios, done in Grant's Tabletop Teasers format, include table maps, orders of battle and a report of how the game played out. Plus the eye candy quotient is very high with many colorful pictures of Grant's collection of wargame figures and terrain.

Highly recommended! evil grin

Maxshadow17 Feb 2019 8:13 a.m. PST

Thanks Der Alte Fritz. Valuable resource.

21eRegt17 Feb 2019 8:47 a.m. PST

Our group is to the final battle of the Wolfenbuttel War and I expect we will go through the other scenario books as well. BTW Jim, I don't seem to be able to post on your blog.

HG Walls17 Feb 2019 10:56 a.m. PST

Thanks Jim, that was a good review and a fun read.

Frederick Supporting Member of TMP17 Feb 2019 11:22 a.m. PST

Thanks as well – must admit I had forgotten about these little gems

23rdFusilier19 Feb 2019 3:47 p.m. PST


Personal logo COL Scott ret Supporting Member of TMP22 Feb 2019 3:40 a.m. PST

Jim, these sound wonderful – albeit I was always under the impression that GDL were the baddies.

Personal logo Der Alte Fritz Sponsoring Member of TMP22 Feb 2019 3:31 p.m. PST

I'm definitely in the VFS camp.

Scotty6619 Mar 2019 3:10 a.m. PST

I have one of the books. Raid on St Michel and I look forward to getting the others. I agree highly recommended.

review below

YouTube link

Marc at work08 Jul 2019 9:06 a.m. PST

Interesting – I have put off buying the Wolf book as reviews were poor

"Reviewed by Neil Smith

The Wolfenbüttel War is the latest in a series of linked wargames scenarios devised and written by prolific wargamer and writer Charles S. Grant. Grant's idea is to provide a narrative context in which wargames can take place thereby making them more strategically realistic. In this case, Grant presents his readers with four scenarios forming a fictional 18th century campaign loosely based on the Waterloo campaign of 1815. In addition, the author provides all the technical information required to run the campaign effectively. Grant's imaginative approach to gaming is let down, however, by framing it in a distinctly unimaginative and sometimes careless production.
The Walfenbüttel War by Charles S. Grant

After the obligatory foreword and introduction, Grant gets down to business. He begins by narrating the origins of the Wolfenbüttel War between the combined states of the Electoral League and the Duchy of Lorraine. Both sides are then given their strategic dispositions and orders, and after another brief narrative section, including a cute account of the Markgräfin's Ball, we get into our first action at Ginly. The scenarios contain few surprises. They consist of an introduction, background, terrain, victory conditions, a map, some game mechanics, a report of the action as fought by Grant and his friends, and a linking section that takes us to the next scenario. From Ginly, we go to Vierarm and Varew; then conclude the action at Silverhausen. Grant ends The Wolfenbüttel War with a ‘biographical' guide to the commanders, notes for game organizers, and a brief ‘wash-up' concluding section in which he outlines changes he would have made when fighting the scenarios.

As a concept, The Wolfenbüttel War is nicely imagined as well as neatly constructed on paper and on the wargames table. As a historian, I would have preferred Grant to turn his considerable administrative talents to an actual campaign of the 18th Century rather than an anachronistic fantasy, but I confess to pondering the Waterloo campaign with tanks and an 18th Century Gettysburg campaign. Grant also writes with enthusiasm and it is clear he enjoys constructing his "tabletop teasers". Unfortunately, the finished product does not match Grant's vision. Outside of the idea, The Wolfenbüttel War is uninspiring. The maps are amateurish, and along with the uninspired photographs of the battles, give the production an almost pre-internet, pre-digital camera feel. Careless production is also evident in the lack of coherent copy-editing and the inclusion of easily avoidable typos; e.g. are Lorraine and Lorrain different entities? Overall, I like what Grant is attempting with his linked wargames concept, but outside of diehard 18th century enthusiasts, looking for fresh inspiration, I am not sure who would buy this product at £16.00 GBP with so much alternative and cheaper material available on-line and in print."

So interesting to hear from a fan

codiver08 Jul 2019 11:19 a.m. PST

I picked up a couple after reading Der Alte Fritz's review. Personally, I agree I'd rather he did actual historical campaigns, or at least historically plausible campaigns, as I have absolutely ZERO interest in "imaginations".

WRT the Neil Smith review, I'd be interested in examples of "…so much alternative and cheaper material available on-line and in print."

Au pas de Charge Supporting Member of TMP20 May 2020 4:26 a.m. PST

Counterfactual campaigns or "imaginations" campaigns dont bother me that much.

The problem with Charles S Grant's books is that his writing style is stillborn and puts my brain to sleep. Maybe he cranks them out too frequently.

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