Gill brings you inside the command tents of Archduke Charles and Napoleon, explaining the multitude of options, hopes, and fears that descended on the commanders in chief and their senior commanders. Better yet, you also get the political influences, and especially the Austrian infighting, that accompany Archduke Charles and Napoleon as they weigh battle versus the fragmentation of their armies in retreat and pursuit.
Napoleon Returns keeps itself on the right side of the line between being a proper wargame as opposed to a game with some war in it, and in doing so delivers a rather spiffy and valid experience.
Usually when one thinks of Napoleonic battles, what comes to mind is a combined arms battle that involves climactic cavalry charges, artillery bombardments, large formations of infantry marching into position for the assault, and a battle of maneuver. There is none of that in Toulon. This is siege warfare. Battle is methodical and development slow. There are no hugely bloody clashes. Playing this game is an exercise in planning and patience. Grab a cup of Earl Grey, hot (thank you, Captain Picard, for that enduring memory), and enjoy the experience for victory is the reward of careful resource management and thoughtful development of position. But, time is not eternal. Each player, especially the French, will be up against the clock and limited resources as they strive to defeat the Allied forces.
Therefore, what you will not get in Trafalgar, with sixty ships in the combat area, is a lot of overly detailed fiddling around with rigging and sail arrays – that part of the ship’s handling is now simply defined by one of three modes of sail deployment: low, medium and full. There is rather more detail assigned to combat, because, if we are honest about it, that is why we are playing the game in the first place – to experience a battle, not a regatta.
Designer: Richard J. Kane Sr. and J. Michael Ruttle Publisher: Clash of Arms Games by Harvey Mossman I doubt there is a respectable wargamer who
By Harvey Mossman Last year, our wargaming group in Long Island decided to play Le Vol de l’Aigle via email with myself as