Operation Uranus: A development of ‘The Sands of New Stanhall’

In reply to my original blog entry about Ian Drury’s game, Martin Rapier mentioned in his comment that he had developed the basic game into an Army-level game about Operation Uranus. I therefore dug through the archives of THE NUGGET and found the article … and realised that he had already trodden a path that I was considering going down myself!

The article – which contained all the rules necessary to play the game – was published in N144 (March 2000).

Unfortunately this article is not available to download, …

… but if Martin gives permission, I will try to make it available in PDF format.

The main change that Martin made was to make the playing pieces battalions rather than companies.


The reason why copies of THE NUGGET published before N193 are not freely available is related to copyright. From N193 onwards authors of articles knew that anything that they wrote would be made freely available online after publication; before that issue they did not know that. Therefore any article featured in THE NUGGET before N193 may only be made available with the express permission of the author.
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Thinking about campaigns

I have always enjoyed taking part in campaigns (I owe great debt to Eric Knowles and his Madasahatta Campaign for introducing me to their delights!), and over recent years I have set up and fought a number of mini-campaigns. For some years I have been planning an Eastern Front/Great Patriotic War, and over the past few days – whilst I have been unwell – I have been giving it some thought.

Setting up such a large-scale campaign needs a lot of preparation and forethought … and only a fool would try to do it without first looking at what other people have done.

The first place that I looked was at Frank Chadwick’s BARBAROSSA 25.

His approach was to ‘bathtub’ the whole thing, with both sides, the maps, and the timescale being scaled down by a factor of 25. This approach did appeal to me … but looking at my figure and model vehicle collection made me realise that it was going to take a lot of work to go down that path.

I then spent time visiting Chris Kemp’s NOT QUITE MECHANISED blog.

I’ve known Chris for thirty seven years, and took part in some of the very early battles that used his rules. Since then Chris has replaced his collection of 20mm figures and vehicles with equivalent 15mm-scale stuff, and his campaign continues to progress.

The third source I went to was Paul Leniston’s NAPOLEONIC WARGAMING blog. It has a complete guide to running a Napoleonic campaign, and is the result of many years of experience in running such campaigns.

This information can be found here:

My preliminary thoughts are to take a similar approach to that outlined on the NAPOLEONIC WARGAME blog. As to the rules I will use to fight my battles … well there are two possibilities; my modern PORTABLE WARGAME rules or my OPERATIONAL ART rules. I suspect that I will opt for the latter … but that is a decision for the future.


Matrix games at the US Army War College

A very interesting blog entry appeared on Rex Brynen’s PAXsims blog last week.

It concerned the use of Matrix Games at the US Army War College, and as I was involved in the early developments of Matrix Games twenty years ago, I was particularly interested to see how much the concept has now moved into the mainstream of military wargaming.

To read this blog entry, please click here. Please note that the views expressed in this blog entry are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy of the Department of the Army, Department of Defense, or the U.S. Government.

Note:
Rex Brynen is a Professor in the Political Science faculty at McGill University, Montréal, Québec, Canada. One of his research interests is professional political-military wargaming, including conflict, peace-building, and development simulation.


When Empires Clash! … the book

If blogging is self-indulgent, then publishing your own book is super-self-indulgent … and I must admit to being just that!

Back in 2009 I wrote a set of wargame rules entitled WHEN EMPIRES CLASH! and made them available free online. I know that a few people have used them, and as part of an experiment I decided to turn my previously free rules into a proper book. I wanted to see just how difficult it would be … and discovered that it was in fact quite easy.

I am not expecting that anyone will buy the rules in their new book form … but if you are interested in buying a copy it is currently on sale via Lulu for £5.99 plus postage and packing.


Nugget 272

I collected the latest edition of THE NUGGET (N272) from the printer on Thursday afternoon, and posted it out to members of Wargame Developments on Saturday morning.

I have now uploaded the PDF versions of THE NUGGET and THE NUGGET COLOUR SUPPLEMENT to the Wargame Developments website and they are available for members of Wargame Developments to read online or to download and print.

IMPORTANT: Please note that this is the eighth and penultimate issue of THE NUGGET to be published for the 2013-2014 subscription year, and that it is the last issue before COW2014 (the Conference of Wargamers 2014).


Nugget 271

I was able to collect the latest edition of THE NUGGET (N271) from the printer early this afternoon, and I now intend to post it out to members of Wargame Developments later today or early tomorrow.

I have already uploaded the PDF versions of THE NUGGET and THE NUGGET COLOUR SUPPLEMENT to the Wargame Developments website and they are available for members of Wargame Developments to read online or to download and print.


IMPORTANT: Please note that this is the seventh issue of THE NUGGET to be published for the 2013-2014 subscription year. It is still possible to subscribe, and this can be done online via the Wargame Developments website. Please note that the subscription costs rose with effect from the beginning of the current subscription year.

Nugget 271

The editor of THE NUGGET sent the original of the next issue (N271) to me last night, and I intend to take it to the printer tomorrow or on Wednesday. With luck I should be able to collect it from them on Friday or Saturday and to be able post it out to members of Wargame Developments by the following Monday.

IMPORTANT: Please note that this is the seventh issue of THE NUGGET to be published for the 2013-2014 subscription year, and there is one more issue before COW2014 (the Conference of Wargamers 2014).

It is still possible to subscribe, and this can be done online via the Wargame Developments website. Please note that the subscription costs rose with effect from the beginning of the current subscription year.