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Getting Started in War Gaming

You're Ready to Begin


  • Don’t forget period buildings too; a house with a water wheel attached makes a great mill to place on a river.

  • Depending on your rules, you may need roster cards organized by commander with all the relevant information about each segment of the army.

  • Dice of course, or virtual dice on a tablet or phone.

Setting Up the Table

There are many resources available to create a scenario and how to balance it so each side has a chance to win the game, and understands what “winning” means.  So here’s a great document to describe several ways to create a scenario.

Is a Map of the Table required?

Well your game has to decide and explain to players concepts of “fog of war.” Again, there are many resources available to implement the uncertain aspects and random events that can influence a commander and the situation presented to players.  A simple way is to have at the ready, Game Cards that players can use on the opponent or even on themselves.  How many cards each player gets again can be determine by die roll, or by commander valuation.

  • A commander valuation and other factors are what we call the “Command Valuation System” or CVS.  This is a series of numbers each commander has, being Initiative, Tactical, Influence Sphere, and Combat Bonus.  You can read all about these and read all our rules in on book in the Hex Command Compendium.

Now, you really are ready to begin and have players chose who will be the overall player commander -if you’ve got more than one player per side.  Otherwise once everything is understood and players understand their armies, they can set up their forces or, if a defender starts in position, he sets up first and the opposing side is the attacker.

Finally, understand the “Activation Sequence” for how a commander’s segments activate in the turn; either first, second third etc.

Finally, if you want some more resource suggestions and articles from our archives, read the iimmdocs.pdf for a wide range of topics on war gaming, siege and more.

Lets assume you’ve got your collection done, which means in summary:

  • Troops are painted to whatever detail you want

  • You’ve based figures as units: infantry up to 8 figures, cavalry up to 3, each artillery gun with a crew to a stand (gun is removable, figures are glued), and commanders are individually mounted.  Also, you’ve got skirmishers mounted about 3 to a stand and about 8 stands per army, and you may have about as many mounted skirmishers if the historical era saw it happen.

  • Depending on your level of detail you might create miniature model scenes or dioramas of commander tents- it's always fun to see a actual headquarters on the game table. 

  • Trees are mounted about 2-3 to a stand, roads and rivers are cut from Foamies craft foam, fence, hedgerows and stone walls are ready and so on.

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