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"Wargaming the Victorio Campaign 1879-1881" Topic

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19th Century

404 hits since 21 Feb 2019
©1994-2019 Bill Armintrout
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arthur181521 Feb 2019 7:07 a.m. PST

Having been very impressed by Robert Watt's latest book, 'Horses Worn to Mere Shadows', I wondered if anyone could recommend any wargame rules suitable for for this campaign?
Thanks for your help.

Lascaris21 Feb 2019 9:11 a.m. PST

I've been working on the same genre and also have struggled with rules. So far I own:

The Sword & the Flame variant – First rules I tried and although I love these rules I didn't like how they played for the Old West.

Warpaint – Haven't tried these yet although they'll be next up when I go back to the Apaches (I'm obsessed over WW3 atm). These rules use "quality dice", like Force on Force and I kind of like that mechanism.

Space 1889 – I really like this set of rules. I ignore all the Martian sci-fi aspects and just use them as a set of colonial rules. I think with some "chrome' added for a more Apache feel these might work.

Too few to fight too many to die – Haven't played and as it's targeted for multi-figure bases, although there are some things you can do to fake it with single based figures, I've decided to skip these.

Yellow ribbon – A very well regarded set of rules. They are a bit hard to find and are definitely old school in presentation. They also require order chits which I'm not a huge fan of but they have rules that force the Native American side to fight more historically.

Legends of the Old West & supplements – Fun and fast, not terribly historical. Smallish sized forces, i.e. it will probably bog down if you get past 20 or so figures per side.

;tldr version, I'd look at Yellow Ribbon or Warpaint. Here's a website that lists a lot of possible rules.

Bash On21 Feb 2019 9:15 a.m. PST

I'm planning on using:
The Men Who Would Be Kings for skirmishes, or
Black Powder (the V2 rulebook has a Pony Wars scenario) for larger battles.

Book looks interesting!

BTW, this book has lots of inspiration for scenarios:

Encyclopedia of Indian Wars: Western Battles and Skirmishes, 1850 – 1890 Paperback June 15, 2003

by Gregory F. Michno

Henry Martini21 Feb 2019 7:12 p.m. PST

While 'Yellow Ribbon' certainly emphasises the conflicting objectives and fighting styles of US and Plains Indian forces, the Apaches play essentially the same as US troops.

Garryowen Supporting Member of TMP23 Feb 2019 5:52 a.m. PST

In my opinion, if rules accurately depict warfare with the Plains Indians, they will not be so hot for Apaches.

Crook learned, much to his chagrin, that they fought much differently.


arthur181527 Feb 2019 2:13 p.m. PST

Thanks for your suggestions and advice! Much appreciated.

Victorio09 Mar 2019 8:32 a.m. PST

I'd agree with Garryowen – Plains Indians don't fight the same way as Apaches. If you are going to play them it would probably be better to play them as a campaign game. I've written a 3-part guide to the Victorio Campaign for Miniature wargames last year. I added in some suggestions in part three as to how you could adapt rules you might be using for Apache warfare.

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