Help support TMP

"5 Most Significant Modern Rulesets?" Topic

30 Posts

All members in good standing are free to post here. Opinions expressed here are solely those of the posters, and have not been cleared with nor are they endorsed by The Miniatures Page.

For more information, see the TMP FAQ.

Back to the Modern Discussion (1946 to 2008) Message Board

Back to the TMP Poll Suggestions Message Board

Areas of Interest


Featured Hobby News Article

1,063 hits since 12 May 2019
©1994-2020 Bill Armintrout
Comments or corrections?

Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian13 May 2019 5:14 p.m. PST

Which land-warfare rulesets covering the post-WWII historical period have made the most impact on game design?

Personal logo miniMo Supporting Member of TMP13 May 2019 6:30 p.m. PST

Charlie Company

lkmjbc313 May 2019 6:40 p.m. PST

Challenger 1/2000… The ultimate in detail.

WRG… Showing that you didn't need all the detail.

Combined Arms…Battalion/Regimental game with platoons as elements.

FFT x… A refinement of Combined Arms using more modern mechanism.

Modern Spearhead… A brigade/ division game with a focus on a higher level of command.

Honorable mention.. Cold War Commander for it's emphasis on Command factors.

Joe Collins

Personal logo aegiscg47 Supporting Member of TMP13 May 2019 6:42 p.m. PST

Combined Arms (Command Decision for the modern period)-Issuing orders for units with chits.

Tacforce-A novel idea (using the data cards) that proved difficult to support and thus became an example of what not to do with a set of rules!

Challenger and Challenger 2000-Took basically the WRG format and turned it into something playable/enjoyable.

Cold War Commander-Took a command and control system from a fantasy war-game and successfully applied it to a modern combat game.

Personal logo David Manley Supporting Member of TMP13 May 2019 6:42 p.m. PST


Personal logo David Manley Supporting Member of TMP13 May 2019 6:46 p.m. PST

Challenger was something playable? Our group tried it after using WRG, found it did the same thing but was painfully slooow and went back to WRG for a much more enjoyable experience. btw that's the edition with the T62 and the smoke on the cover, not the awful second edition that introduced Challenger-esqe levels of tedium and slow olay

dragon613 May 2019 7:50 p.m. PST

I agree with Mr Manley about wrg and 1st vs 2nd but Harpoon? Painfully slow doesn't begin to describe Harpoon 4 or 4.1. Although the parameters of discussion limited it to land warfare if we allow naval then Warship Commander 2/Sea Command was actually playable vs H4.X

emckinney13 May 2019 10:05 p.m. PST

And Warship Commmander 2/Sea Command explicitly modeled electronic warfare.

However, the rules did little to influence later designs, so I don't consider them significant.

emckinney13 May 2019 10:15 p.m. PST

Flames of War. Retook tablespace from WH40K, gave people a WWII game where they could actually find opponents*, got more people buying WWII figs, which allowed PSC to launch "game detail" injection molded models, which brought prices down for common tanks, and generally brought new (young) blood into the hobby.

And they're successfully expanding into moderns (1980s, Arab-Israeli wars).

*Many people played WH40K because they knew they could always find opponents, not because they loved the setting or the rules. Without "one game to rule them all," you were certain to find that your carefully collected WWII armies were in the wrong scale when you moved to a new area. And you'd have to learn a whole new rules set, anyhow. Ironically, this was a particular problem for those in the military …

DestoFante14 May 2019 12:49 a.m. PST

I am surprised nobody has mentioned Ambush Alley/Force on Force yet. I'd think it is one of the most significant modern rulesets, and highly representative of the trends in the hobby over the last 10-15 years.

repaint14 May 2019 3:20 a.m. PST

Cold War Commander
Force on Force
Team Yankee
No end in sight
Fireteam modern

martin goddard Sponsoring Member of TMP14 May 2019 3:31 a.m. PST


Mkultra9914 May 2019 3:46 a.m. PST

Haha "Harpoon"? That's either very funny… or sad.. I can't tell which over the internets.

Stargrunt 2 of course.. it's influence is still being felt in game design.

Personal logo martinjpayne Supporting Member of TMP14 May 2019 3:49 a.m. PST

Force on Force.

dwight shrute14 May 2019 4:04 a.m. PST

force on force took many of its ideas from stargrunt .

charles popp14 May 2019 5:22 a.m. PST

Gene McCoys Standard rules from the Wargame Digest. It is the grandfather for all modern rules that use platoon as the base unit.

Personal logo miniMo Supporting Member of TMP14 May 2019 5:53 a.m. PST

McCoy alas never published rules, just the Standard Units.

14th NJ Vol Supporting Member of TMP14 May 2019 6:29 a.m. PST

Fist Full of TOWS. A trend toward playability over the minutia of Rivet counting that make modern games painfully slow to play. A shout out for GHQ Modern MicroArmor rules to.

Patrick Sexton Supporting Member of TMP14 May 2019 6:35 a.m. PST

Force on Force. Flames of War.

French Wargame Holidays14 May 2019 7:19 a.m. PST

Cold War Commander
Force on Force
Fireteam modern

22ndFoot14 May 2019 10:11 a.m. PST

The TooFatLardies sets – first I Ain't Been Shot, Mum and then Chain of Command both represent significant evolutions for me. Got me back into twentieth century gaming after a very long hiatus anyway.

TankerTom14 May 2019 10:12 a.m. PST

If by significant you mean widely played and influential than I agree with Joe Collins.

Challenger I/II/2000 …widely played but very detailed.

WRG …Great set. Widely played and very playable. I played this a lot.

Combined Arms …Made one model equal one unit not just one tank. Very influential set. Loved playing it.

FFT … Widely played. Been around for a long time.

Modern Spearhead …A superb set (along with WW2 version). Widely played and very playable. Each stand is a platoon but you command brigades and divisions.

Tac Force card concept was interesting. Played a few times in the army but didn't find it compelling/fun.

Team Yankee has the potential to be an influential set. FOW isn't my cup of tea but it is a set that If I have an army, I can show up at a convention and be pretty confident I can find an opponent using the same scale and rules…a very attractive option.

Lion in the Stars14 May 2019 1:01 p.m. PST

Ambush Alley/Force on Force.

Stargrunt (and maybe Dirtside).

Flames of War is influential because it took table space from the 40k crowd. You are almost guaranteed to be able to find a FoW game when you move to a new place.

Generalstoner4914 May 2019 2:27 p.m. PST

Force on Force/Ambush Alley
Team Yankee
Cold War Commander
Sabre Squadron
Seven Days to the River Rhine

UshCha15 May 2019 1:33 a.m. PST

DBM not modern but paved the way for much better movement, endemic disorder: in many ways being the revolution. Without the basic insights into the art of the possible. we would still be trapped in the 6" and 12" style cripplingly limited movement rules.

Stargrunt 2 Insights into how rules can be made to flow with command.

WRG 1925 to 1950 Probably the least worst of the "modern" as he was not quite so slaved to the Equal points daft games. And also started with credible Suppression systems. Dreadful command and control but at least it had some.

Lionel Tars rules in Donald Featherstone's book, way ahead of his time and not understood at the time.

Featherstone's rules in "War Games" Dreadful rules still cloned today but he had the excuse he was first and got me started on a lifelong hobby.

Mkultra9915 May 2019 4:01 a.m. PST

@Generalstoner49 "Seven Days to the River Rhine"…? Really? Is it that good? It just came out man. It's based off of the Iron Cross engine.. which didn't seem to gather much steam..? Curious as to why you would put that as being impactful on game design? Please elucidate. Or, are you just typing rule book titles that are in front of you?

Lion in the Stars15 May 2019 6:58 a.m. PST

I should probably add the ancient FASA game, Renegade Legion: Centurion. It has one of the best artillery and air support integrations I've seen, even if it is a scifi game.

Mobius15 May 2019 8:21 a.m. PST

I played WRG a lot. Fast and easy. A few holes in it. Morale system was a dumpster fire.

Played Challenger a few times. Players weren't to sure on the turn system as they seemed to forget sequencing often. Maybe they confused it with WRG.

Used my own set, Airland War, since the early '90s.

Striker15 May 2019 9:50 a.m. PST

Charlie Company, Skirmish Sangin, Force on Force, Stargrunt 2.

Phrodon16 May 2019 8:38 a.m. PST

I liked Challenger in the day (late 80's). I owned a ton of CnC miniatures. We also played a lot of Mayfair games Engage and Destroy.

I tried Harpoon once – in a three room setup. Each player in a room and the ref and table in a third. Really cool but nothing happened. As soon as someone switched on a radar to find the enemy ships, you were blasted out of the water by multiple incoming missiles. I guess realistic but rather dull game in the end.

Otherwise I only skirmish in post-WWII now, using The Face of Modern Battle.

Sorry - only verified members can post on the forums.