Category: Blog


6mm ACW Paper Armies

6mm ACW Paper Strength Armies will be available from Saturday evening (18th February 2017) . Both armies in one pack, 42 files. The pack will include flags, generals & ADCs. Only £10 for both armies – This is something of a limited offer here, as I will be reviewing prices next month (hint-hint with a nod and a wink). Sample; Union Infantry in Kepis…  

BELLA CONTRA BARBAROS Grand Manoeuvre Ancient Rules

Well, I`m in the last stages of getting my ancient rules together…
And I guess its about time (overdue actually) to post some the news of this here!
The rules cover the period of Rome`s wars with the barbarians from 100BC to 100AD; from the reforms of Marius to the Dacian War of Trajan.
There are some interesting ancient period flavours in this one. I`ve included many of the stratagems mentioned by Frontinus and Polyeanus – these stratagems are played with cards selected by players, or at random for the game set up and the game itself. There are also pre-battle speeches which may give the player some game advantages. The rules are an adaptation of my Napoleonic set; the same rules mechanisms are applied to ancient Roman and barbarian tactical methods. Added to the mix (and only if things are going badly for the player) is the possibility of an heroic death for both barbarians and Romans – the Roman version of this being called the “devotio”.
Publication here by pdf download will be sometime in April 2017.

Paper Strength Units Are Here !

Designed with the Napoleonic beginner in mind; “Paper Strength Units” will provide players with an opportunity to game on a large scale or with an “en masse” effect but at a very low cost – you may print and make as many units as you wish.

For example, the French Army pack consists of twenty-two pdf files of French “Line” army units and includes; light and line infantry, skirmishers, cavalry and artillery with horse and limbers and flags.

All you will need to make them is paper, small sharp scissors, PVA glue, a small brush and printer ink.

Once made and the glue is dried, the army unit blocks are surprisingly strong and can be very durable – I still have some in my garage that I made in April 2006!  

The bottom line: £5 for an army pack of 20-25 files and smaller packs and armies will cost proportionately less!

Halsach-Jungingen & Castiglione: AAR`s posted

Gunzburg AAR posted in battle reports

a new quick reference forum for rules typo corrections…

new links have been added to some useful Napoleonic sites…

Shiny new website!

All, as you can see we have a shiny new website – please explore and I welcome your feedback.

Rifles: ranges and effects.

In simplifying the game design to achieve fast play, I decided against having different factors for rifle-armed skirmishers, but if you think it appropriate for smaller games or where rifles are plentiful, for rifles, one could have 6 and 12 centimetres for short and long ranges, with a -2 at short range against other skirmishers – that is within 4 centimetres. I intend to test this with the Vimerio scenario – I expect that the rifles should be able to keep their distance from any advancing French skirmishers in broken terrain… well, that is until a formed unit combat occurs. Mike.

game play examples….

The infantry and cavalry game play examples posted here earlier are now downloadable from the yahoogroup at: and will soon be at Angel barracks too I think… i`ll post here again when that happens with the link for the rules page. regards, mike.

Schongrabern scenario

My Schongrabern scenario is now posted on both the yahoogroup and the Angel Barracks rules page.


scroll down to the bottom to find the scenarios on the Angel Barracks rules page,

or in the files section, scenarios folder on the Grand Manoeuvre yahoogroup.

about skirmishers…

here`s a summary of the recent posts about skirmishers on the yahoogroup:

French skirmishing options:

1. If they have one use Legere regiments for the divisional “skirmish line”.

2. Use the first line of battle’s light companies as “tirailleurs de combat” in direct support of their parent battalions or brigades.

3. “Tirailleurs de combat” may be reinforced by infantry of fusilier companies from the first line (combating with a -1 modifier) or of voltigeurs from the second line of battle.

4. Form a “ligne d`approache” (as outlined in the notes on dispositions)
A minimum of two companies must form the “ligne d`approache” and one of those companies must be kept as a reserve. The effect of formed reserve companies would be to add a +1 to the skirmisher class die roll in combat if it is within 10cms.
5. Form a “flanking brigade” to act more independently, or in support of the brigade/division on one of its flanks.
Skirmishers drawn from line battalions that already have had their voltigeurs drawn off will combat with a -1 to their skirmisher class combat roll.

6. Third rank skirmishers may be used.

7. Tirailleurs “en grandes bandes”.

8. Tirailleurs “a la debandade”.

For the sake of clarity in the game, options 7 and 8 have distinct formal
arrangements and are shown on page 21.

[These French options are already in the rules.]

British skirmishing options:

1. British brigades/divisions may use light infantry battalions for their skirmisher screens.

2. Use their line battalion’s own light companies.

3. Reinforce these with centre companies from the line (with a -1).

4. Form a flanking brigade.

5. Screening the front of its command, a light brigade`s skirmisher supports would be stationed on the flank, or both flanks of their brigades.

6. Add rifle companies to the above formations.

Line Skirmishers:

Volunteer skirmishers and strengths up to a company:
Prussian, Russian and Austrian line battalions may skirmish with one base, representing volunteers etc. and strengths up to a company deployed for that purpose, but with a -1 modifier to their die roll.

Third rank skirmishers:
Third rank skirmishers are represented by two bases from each battalion. Both bases combat with a -1 to their unit die rolls.
If the third ranks do not manage to perform a unit manouevre back into line, the parent unit will then suffer a -1 to its combat die roll.

Battalions of less than about 300 men will be represented by 3 bases and with the battalion very likely being deployed in two ranks at that strength, it will not be able to deploy third rank skirmishers.

Notes about specialist light infantry:
a)       Austrian Jagers rate as “D” class when formed; all bases may be deployed as “C” class skirmisher bases.

b)       1805 Austrian Grenzers rate as “E” class when formed; they may only deploy one “C” class skirmisher base.

c)       Up to 1800 Austrian Grenzers rate as “E” class when formed; they may deploy all bases as “C” class skirmisher bases.

d)       Detached light infantry companies or divisions (two companies), are represented by one skirmisher base per company.

e)       Light infantry battalions: up to three bases may be deployed as skirmishers.

f)         If they have two or more bases deployed Russian Jagers (unless highly rated) will all combat with -1 a modifier to each skirmisher class die roll.

g)       Due to their small numbers, from 1792 to 1807, only one base of Prussian line skirmishers (Schuetzen) may be deployed from each regiment.

Open & extended order:
Light infantry battalions may be deployed in open or extended order with each unit base counting as skirmishers.

Line infantry battalions may be deployed in open or extended order with each unit base counting as skirmishers, but with a -1 to their combat die rolls.

[The red high-lighted points are already in the rules]

scenario for Mariazell, 8th. November 1805.

I`ve just posted this at the yahoogroup and like I say, I`m very happy to finally have it there. Due to the Assistance of Robert Goetz, it places the battle of Mariazell at its correct location and has the Austrian forces represented more accurately. I`ll post again here, once it is up on the Angel Barracks website too.

catching up with those additional rules…

The third additional is:

Rallying troops to improve morale.
On behalf of commanding officers, or generals, players may attempt to rally units in poor morale.
This is represented in an abstract manner by balancing the unit `s discipline level against the quality of its commanding officers.
To improve a unit’s morale, players roll two dice. One for the general’s/commanding officer’s initiative and another for the unit class die roll. Both die rolls must be passed to recover on step in morale.
If the test is failed the unit’s morale state worsens by one step.

Generals or unit commanders may attempt to rally their troops behind friendly lines (cavalry infantry or artillery “lines”) or, if they are not with range of enemy artillery.

Example of rallying troops to improve morale:
If a unit is experienced, and the commander is good a 3, 4, 5, or a 6 is required for the unit and a 3, 4, 5, or a 6 is required by the general There would therefore, be a 44.4% chance of the unit’s morale recovering on

rules additions: battle maddened units.

…and so, continuing from the previous subject of additional rules….

Battle maddened units:

There should be a die roll for morale reaction to shaken results with long range artillery fire. If the unit scores a “6” the unit becomes “Battle Maddened” instead, but only until the unit has been in a combat.

The unit would receive modifiers: for being “Battle Mad”:
+1 in combat
-2 to artillery fire.
Battle maddened units are classed as being “in good order”
Although at first they had been “shaken” by artillery fire, battle maddened units do not cause the command to make a command reaction test.
After the first turn of combat, a unit morale state reverts to a “shaken”.

This is an additional and optional rule that can be varied by players of umpires to fit in with their scenarios.
We tested it in a game of Colluden, with an increased chance that the highlanders would become battle maddened under the Hanoverian guns.

Grand Manouevre: Black Powder and Blue Steel divisional packs

You get 12 battalions of infantry plus skirmishers, 2 regiments of cavalry, 6
guns with crew and limbers and the necessary mounted commanders to steer your
men to victory.

These are now available from Angel Barracks at:

Tailor made nation specific armies will be available later.

free download of Castiglione-Solferino scenario

I`ve just finished my scenario for Castiglione-Solferino 1796.
There`s more colour in this booklet than usual because it was played as a demo
game in Plymouth and there were some good quality photos on hand. So, to my
usual formula of scenario, I`ve added an AAR of the game and a few photos from
the PAW2011 show.

The umpire`s notes have the historical deployments, whereas the players have the
freedom to array their forces as they wish within their deployment areas.
The arrival of reinforcements are diced for by an umpire.
And each sides` victory conditions are based upon the general guidelines of
doing better than the commander`s did on the day.

You can find the scenario posted at:
(at the bottom of the page, please scroll down)

or you can join the Grand Manoeuvre group at:
(and find this and other scenarios in the files section)



rules additions: 1. Cavalry v infantry squares.

I`m a little behind here on the blog, but i`ll be posting the recent rules additions here presently; and starting with modifers and combat points for cavalry (especially heavies and lancers) against infantry squares.
These factors have been based on looking at about 25-30 historical examples of cavalry breaking infantry squares and trying to determine the circumstances that caused each infantry square to be broken.
The common factors were that; the cavalry were of higher unit class, the cavalry were either heavy cavalry or lancers, and wet weather conditions prevented the infantry from firng and allowed the cavalry to close with them.
In more detail though, in 29 combat examples the main factors were:
The cavalry were of better quality: 22
The cavalry were armed with lances: 9
Heavy cavalry broke the square: 8
Wet weather conditions in the combat: 6
It was a “multiple combat”: 4  
The square was weakened: 3
The square was disrupted/unformed: 2

On the other hand, I decided that this was an opportunity to add a modifier for the effect of the supporting fire of infantry squares… the effect is the same modifier that applies normally to overlapping units.

So I have added the following combat points and die roll modifiers for cavalry v. infantry squares.

Unit class die roll modifiers:
-1: To cavalry attacking an infantry square supported by another square within 4 centimetres.

Combat points:
+1: If heavy cavalry/lancers unit die roll is a “6”
+1: To heavy cavalry v. square.
+1: To lancers v. square.
+1: To cavalry in wet weather.


The rules have moved…

My rules Grand Manoeuvre have moved to the new Angel Barracks site at: