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"Which Are Your Favourite Free Rules?" Topic

De Bellis Velitum

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Whirlwind11 Jun 2014 9:49 p.m. PST

Which are your favourite free rules for the various periods and sizes/types (big battle/mid-sized/skirmish) of game?

COL Scott ret11 Jun 2014 10:36 p.m. PST

Junior General web site. Of course I play with my children and their friends most often.

evilcartoonist11 Jun 2014 11:01 p.m. PST

Chain Reaction from Two Hour Wargames for most skirmish (and sometimes small battle) action for just about any period.

Personal logo ochoin Supporting Member of TMP11 Jun 2014 11:20 p.m. PST

ELAN Napoleonic rules: for anything from brigade-sized fights to Waterloo.

Norman D Landings11 Jun 2014 11:26 p.m. PST

'Greenjackets' Napoleonic skirmish – originally published in MW, now available at

Really elegant initiative mechanic whereby you can delay your action, but your action points reduce as you do so.
So the key decision is balancing 'when to act' against 'how much I want to do'.

Martin Rapier12 Jun 2014 2:43 a.m. PST

A few which we play regularly spring to mind:

OP14 by Richard Brooks, Corps/Army level WW1 gaming.

Iron Ships & Wooden Heads by Tim Gow, naval warfare in the era of the big gun.

KISS Rommel, operational WW2.

Battlegroup by John Armatys: WW2 battalion/brigade level.

A Platoon Commanders War by John Armatys: WW2 platoon/company tactical.

NATO Brigade Comander by Tim Gow: brigade/divison level modern.

otherwise we seem to be having a bit of a commercial rules phase at the moment, a lot of Command and Colours and Neil Thomas games.

Pentaro12 Jun 2014 2:56 a.m. PST

"In the heart of Africa", "Fast & Dirty", "Warmaster".

The Red Baron12 Jun 2014 3:16 a.m. PST

I really like "Age of Blood" for 15mm dark age skirmish/small warband games.

elsyrsyn12 Jun 2014 4:00 a.m. PST

Probably "Destroy All Monsters."


rvandusen Supporting Member of TMP12 Jun 2014 4:28 a.m. PST

FAD4 and Skjaldborg

Steve12 Jun 2014 5:16 a.m. PST

Full Thrust

Sundance12 Jun 2014 5:59 a.m. PST

Blue Skies, Wood and Canvas, WWI air game.

Dennis12 Jun 2014 6:12 a.m. PST

Ditto for Blue Skies, Wood and Canvas.

Norrins12 Jun 2014 6:30 a.m. PST

Chain Reaction 3

arthur181512 Jun 2014 6:35 a.m. PST

Hearts of Tin by Ross Macfarlane from his Battle Game of the Month blog.
Bob Cordery's various Portable Wargame rules from his Wargaming Miscellany blog.

Personal logo etotheipi Sponsoring Member of TMP12 Jun 2014 6:59 a.m. PST

Quick Intermediate Level Skirmish (QILS), but heavily biased as it is our game. Low overhead combat mechanic for skirmish. Focuses attention on maneuver/tactics/strategy vice numbers and gamesmanship.

The Space Hulk rule .pdf that GW published on their site in the mid 90's(?) or so. It had the core rules and some of the WD supplement before GW decided not to give up on SH. It's just a nice, simple little game.

I don't know if Mage Knight Dungeons counts. The rules are free and are/were available free online. You can't really play it without buying WK(/NECA) figures, so that kinda makes it not free. Love the rules though (flow, clarity, meta-management). Still use them for 'Clix games.

21eRegt12 Jun 2014 7:00 a.m. PST

Cousin Jonathan and John Bull from the Complete Captain.

corporalpat12 Jun 2014 7:55 a.m. PST

My own home rules!

Personal logo 20thmaine Supporting Member of TMP12 Jun 2014 8:30 a.m. PST

De Bellis Velitum are taking up a lot of my time right now.

Florida Tory12 Jun 2014 9:09 a.m. PST

Column, Line and Square.

After 45 years, still the most exciting rules for Napoleonic wargaming.



William Warner12 Jun 2014 9:26 a.m. PST

Victory Without Quarter for ECW and Basic Impetus for most anything before that. Both are medium to big battle.

Personal logo Stosstruppen Supporting Member of TMP12 Jun 2014 10:56 a.m. PST

Victory Without Quarter

Inkpaduta12 Jun 2014 11:06 a.m. PST

In the Heart of Africa for me. I always was able to get the DBA online free too.

brass112 Jun 2014 11:23 a.m. PST

Is "Iron Ships & Wooden Heads" by Tim Gow still available anywhere? I've never been able to find a copy.


MajorB12 Jun 2014 12:06 p.m. PST

Is "Iron Ships & Wooden Heads" by Tim Gow still available anywhere? I've never been able to find a copy.

And look under "Downloads" (on the right hand side of the screen).

brass112 Jun 2014 12:55 p.m. PST

Thanks, MajorB.


paul liddle12 Jun 2014 1:33 p.m. PST

Kings of War from Mantic Games.

Bandolier12 Jun 2014 5:03 p.m. PST

'Fife & Drum' by Der Alte Fritz (Jim Purky).

'No Quarter' are also excellent.

Skeets Supporting Member of TMP12 Jun 2014 7:25 p.m. PST

Column, Line and Square
Blenheim 2004
Yanks up the Yangtze

bobm195913 Jun 2014 7:34 a.m. PST

Basic Impetus: played regularly and then moved "up" to full version…and played regularly (which is a win for them really).

Heazy Slypocrite14 Jun 2014 5:07 a.m. PST

Skjaldborg for medieval skirmish.
All of the output from The Perfect Captain.

B6GOBOS14 Jun 2014 11:10 a.m. PST

For the Crimean war I use "Charge of the Light Brigade."
For AWI I use "Loose files and American scramble."
Both sets are easy to learn, give a fun game and reflect how I think k the period was (based on my reading far too many books).

Weasel14 Jun 2014 2:22 p.m. PST

Yay, two people said FAD/Fast and Dirty :)

For myself, Beamstrike has given me a few really fun games, so that'll be up there. I've read tons that were really clever but which haven't made it to the table yet.

Ottoathome15 Jun 2014 4:54 a.m. PST

I write them myself
They're the BEST!
For me.

Weasel15 Jun 2014 11:18 a.m. PST

Ottoathome – in the end, isn't that all that counts? :)

So how many people have gone and downloaded a bunch of the rules in this list? :)

freewargamesrules15 Jun 2014 12:56 p.m. PST

I'm surprised no one's mentioned FUBAR yet.

Mooseworks815 Jun 2014 10:52 p.m. PST


11th ACR16 Jun 2014 9:54 p.m. PST

My own!

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