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"55 Days at Peking- looking for some ideas...." Topic

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jfishm198120 May 2019 11:10 a.m. PST

Fellow TMPers,

I hope everyone is doing well. So, something I've always wanted to game is rearing its head- recreating the foreign legations and doing 55 Days at Peking.

In thinking about this, I wanted to try and get a sense of whether you've run this before, or if you've played it and would care to share your thoughts on how it went.

The reasons for doing this it are obvious to me, with lots of Boxers running around, many teams representing each nation, and all the pageantry of the terrain.

Also, what I'm particularly interested in is whether or not the game mirrored the actual accounts about the siege.

Finally, if you've played or run this scenario, was the game set at the beginning of the siege, the middle, or the end? From my limited Internet research, it seems to me that most people run it at the beginning, with Boxers being able to run in between the legations and in the streets.

Curious to hear your thoughts!


Frederick Supporting Member of TMP20 May 2019 11:23 a.m. PST

One of my favourite settings – the few times we have done it, did it mostly in the early siege and recycled shot-up Boxer units to keep them coming

Also did it late and the various relief columns compete to see who gets to save the Legations first

Andoreth20 May 2019 11:29 a.m. PST

We have tended to play the middle, once the defences around the legations are fairly well defined or the end, with the relief forces storming the walls or getting a rougher time fighting through the outer city.

One of the problems we did face was that fighting in and around the legation compounds themselves makes it difficult to move figures even if you exclude all the non-combatants both European and Chinese who had taken refuge there. and on a 28mm tables the city walls make a pretty impressive battlefield.

JimDuncanUK20 May 2019 12:03 p.m. PST


email me at jimduncan779 at btinternet dot com

tinned fruit Supporting Member of TMP20 May 2019 12:31 p.m. PST

There's a great article in an old Wargames Illustrated – 55 minutes at Peking which is well worth a look.

Tom Reed Supporting Member of TMP20 May 2019 12:31 p.m. PST

A buddy of mine and I used to run this at our local convention. I believe that he got the rules from an old issue of Wargames Illustrated.

Jcfrog Supporting Member of TMP21 May 2019 1:08 a.m. PST

I can re commend you the Wargames illustrated game, very good and re playable, multiplayer or not. Fabulous.
I run it in a public show which happened to be a "day of China" promotion too, it was watched by the Chinese ambassador. Who stayed suitably oriental impassible. 😆

The French magazine Vae Victis has a small boardgame with sectors that could be easily adapted with figures and 3D to give it esthatical appeal, and on top of that it is a solo game. ( which can be made multiplayer).

One of the play/ historical problem with the Chinese was their utter inneficiency and incompetence. I remember having to explain it in the show…. Before I saw this one there, which might explain his looks.

Long time ago I sold my 25mm set, as most of the hordes of Chinese belonged to several guys who melted away. And it took space.
But if it would be reasonable to afford it, would 100% go for it with the salivating ensemble done by Bluemoon, with a mite of Lancashire figs for even more variety. In 18mm.

surdu200521 May 2019 3:32 a.m. PST

Bill Mollyneau will be running 55 Days at Peiking at Barrage in September.

Personal logo Flashman14 Supporting Member of TMP21 May 2019 6:50 a.m. PST

You'll want to have seen this: It may inspire you or put you off on the whole thing due to the superior and hard to duplicate or rival presentation.


Richard Baber21 May 2019 6:58 a.m. PST

The SOTCW ran a participation game at Gauntlet some yrs back, photos on Will`s blog here:


Jcfrog Supporting Member of TMP21 May 2019 7:41 a.m. PST

The Warin15mm link is astonishing. If I even can put the needed dough in it, this would be the aim to try reaching. Chapeau bas.

ezza12321 May 2019 11:05 a.m. PST

If of interest there is Colonial Campaigns Boxer Rebellion: Admiral Seymour's Relief Attempt that comes with ten scenarios: link

Also take a look at the Dust, Tears and Dice blog, as they seem to have a played a few games using the above campaign booklet: link

Matakishi's Tea House has a free set of colonial siege rules, with samples army lists for the Boxer Rebellion: link


Lion in the Stars21 May 2019 6:30 p.m. PST

And Blue Moon has a whole range of 'big 15mm'/18mm minis for the Boxer rebellion and the Legation buildings!

ezza12323 May 2019 5:42 a.m. PST

Some more Boxer Rebellion bits and pieces at Din of Battle: link


Nick Stern Supporting Member of TMP23 May 2019 10:41 a.m. PST

The back issue of Wargames Illustrated with the 55 Minutes at Peking is #27. I am looking at the scenario now and it appears to me to be set somewhere in the middle of the siege. No relief columns are involved and special event cards include things like: Hospital hit by shellfire, Water is running short, Food is running short, A counter mine is required, etc. When I helped a friend run the game, we basically "cut to the chase" and held a general assault on all the legations. We used TSATF rules instead of the ones in the article. The game was a glorious, and spectacular, success.

deflatermouse25 May 2019 1:49 a.m. PST

I played the 55 minutes scenario twice in the '90's. Once in Scotland and once in Australia a year or two later.
Both time a great game. Great fun.
Top tip, have everyone contribute some troops to defend the wall. Quote, "Anyone contribute troops to the wall barricades? then, this'll be quick…" as the hordes came pouring over… :/

AICUSV25 May 2019 2:49 p.m. PST

One of the most "interesting" games I've played, was based on the relief of the legations. Half way though the game the Japanese player decided that Asia should be for Asians. After he wiped the Germans (my command) out and driving the British and American off the table we called the game.

Nick Pasha26 May 2019 5:02 a.m. PST

Unless you are committed to 25 mm figures, I suggest 15mm. I played this game at Hurricon in Orlando. The layout fits on a 10 ft. table with just about all the legations present. There is plenty of room to move figures. The gamesmaster used TSATF with a couple of modifications.

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