A Comprehensive Resource on Block War Games
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Question: You are on vacation and suddenly damaged your ankle. You are told to stay on bedrest. So, what do you do with your time? For me, generate this list, of course.

President Lyndon Baines Johnson studying a representation of the Khe Sanh battlefield in the White House situation room in 1968. [BGG Thread: LBJ Block War Game — my citations will be in brackets]


I loved Wizard Kings when it came out and then Sekigahara: The Unification of Japan and Hammer of the Scots. I was convinced as an avid eurogamer that only these three block games existed on the planet. That’s an exaggeration. I figured perhaps two or three others existed and I would find them.

Boy, was I ever wrong?!?

In all fairness, I knew there would be more games out there, and I wanted to find out more about what existed. So, this is my attempt at a comprehensive list.

How can I say this is comprehensive? I attempted to search for every single Geeklist and Forum that had mention of a “Block” in this context. I pulled key statements from these together into this thread and attribute these statements with the exhaustive references found at the end of this header.

Why do I state this is a resource? It’s simple. I bring little to NO original ideas — with one exception noted later. But, the collective BGG brothers and sisters have already done much of the work in this. I just went an extra step to pull the data together and reference the appropriate list.

Now, I know what you are saying: he is crazy for doing all this effort on lists that already exist. I agree, but this is also how I learn. I wanted to develop this as a resources as I am a researcher at heart and a eurogamer who is gaining appreciation for wargames. I also want to help others see what is available and decide if they want to give these interesting set of games a try. Plus, I know that social media loves to provide feedback on posts, so this is your opportunity to help me complete what is missing / provide your input.

So, first, what is a block war game?

There are many defintiions, and I’ll provide you how I’m defining it for this list. I use a similar definition developed in one of the geeklists I ran across. Block War Games are “games that substantially meet all of the following criteria: (1) uses blocks as the units that provide a "fog of war" effect; (2) a wargame; (3) addresses the "theme" in an interesting or compelling manner; and (4) fun to play (understanding that this can be very subjective, especially for wargames).” [BGG Geeklist: Top 10 Block Wargames].

What they are not by the criteria I’m using:

or or

Stratego (left) is a block war game by many definitions but doesn’t meet #3 or #4 above (for me). Likewise, Red Storm Rising (middle) is a block war game by many definitions but doesn’t meet #1 above. And, the one on the right... well... that’s Jenga.

So, what else do I not include?

If it has been merged with something else or is a now a newer version, I didn't include the original version. There are exceptions notably being Victoria Cross is included because it is a Block War Game whereas Victoria Cross II is not due to the absence of wood blocks (#1 criteria). Also, I did not include Commands & Colors: Ancients (or variants), Friedrich, Maria, etc. they are excellent games in their own right but don’t provide the “fog of war” effect I’m trying to experience with degrading unit strength. Last, the list could go forever so no Print-n-Play releases, planned for release games (e.g., potential Kickstarter) or rumored releases / updates. If it didn’t become a commercial product for purchase once upon a time, then I didn't include it. I encourage you to visit The Blocks (and fog) of War: A definitive list for a list that broadly includes several of these.

About Block War Games.

A nice 33-minute video summary of Block War Games one of BGG’s users is as follows:



Likewise, Columbia games has a 4 minute video:



And, while not a video, check out Brian Willaims’ Blog at Wargame Blockhead for more insights on block war games!

There are several users I found particularly informative / insightful and I want to thank them and others for their contributions to our hobby:
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Check out the thread (Intro to Block Wargaming) that discusses Block War game introductory considerations to include articles on 3 Things to Look for in a Good Introductory Block War Game and an argument for why War of 1812 should be first block war game.

To understand tiers of complexity, I find Alan Kaisler’s assessment helpful (paraphrased):

"The older group of these games (Napoleon, Quebec 1759 and War of 1812) have fairly simple rules and play pretty quick. They are no more difficult than your average euro. The next group would be Hammer of the Scots, Liberty, Hellas and maybe Crusader Rex... These rules are a bit more complex but still nothing a regular euro gamer couldn't easily handle. The next level up would probably consist of Rommel, Gettysburg, Wizard Kings and Victory. These are more traditional war games with hex based movement and terrain modifiers etc. but they are still not that complex... The next level would probably fall somewhere around Sam Grant, Bobby Lee and Pacific Victory. These are definitely wargames... Gameplay takes a longer time with frequent trips back to the rulebook to check rules... Europe Engulfed probably falls somewhere in this range as well. Lastly, the Front series with Eastfront being the best. You can combine all these into one huge game if you want but that's really expensive, very time consuming and probably not in your best interests." [1]

Oh....

That one exception I mentioned earlier is actually two now:
-- I’ve see some folks want these games listed by year / era. So, I went ahead and added dates for each conflict and a brief description of that conflict.
-- The last item is also a series of polls for your favorite of like-era games. Click here to go straight to the poll. The highest voting games are also marked in the geeklist as "(A Geeklist Pick for this Era!)"


Hope you enjoy. Cheers,

Geeklist References (cited below):
1. The (sometimes) DEFINITIVE List of Block Games
2. Best Block Wargames
3. Which Block War Game should i get?
4. The Ultimate Block Wargame and Why
5. An introduction to block games
6. Exploring the world of block games.
7. The Blocks (and fog) of War: A definitive list
8. Block Wargames for More than Two People
9. Block Wargame of the Decade: Final Round - Voting Ended
10. Block Wargames and CDG Wargames that play well Solo.
11. Block Games owned by ScottH.
12. Top 10 Block Wargames
13. Columbia Block Games, Ranked by BGG
14. The Theme of 2012: The Year of the Block Wargame
15. Top Rated Block Wargames by Active BGG Wargamers - May 2013
16. The Blocks of War: My Top 10 Wooden Block "Fog of War" games
17. Worthington Block Games
18. My Collection: Block Games
19. Block Wargames – Fog of War vs Gathered Intelligence
20. Best of Columbia Games.
21. Chris' Best of Columbia Games
22. Help me - I Want to Play with Blocks
General Geek Thread References (cited below; gaps in numbering allow for future list expansion):
51. Forward Observer #2 - Block Wargames
52. Looking for block war games with mounted map boards
53. Intro to Block Wargaming
54. Best PTO Block Game?
55. CDG block war game about Winter War
56. Entry level block wargame?
57. Strategic-Level Napoleonic Block Wargame?
58. Block game for kids?
59. Recommendation of these three light block wargames...
60. Picking the Perfect Block Game
61. Block Wargame Suggestions
62. Block war game (with dice rolling results)
63. Which block wargame?
64. American Civil War/Revolutionary War Block Games
65. 2 player block war games with mounted maps
66. What are all of the best block war games out there?
67. Which Grand Strategic WW II Block Game Should I Get
68. Battle-scale block games similar to Guns of Gettysburg or Napoleon's Triumph
Specific Geek Thread References (cited below; gaps in numbering allow for future list expansion):
80. So you're wondering about the best introductory block war game: Let's learn how to play with Ender's pictorial review of Hammer of the Scots' brand new cousin!
81. Short and simple
82. Hellenes: Asymmetry and Clever Mechanics Combine for an Elegant New Design
83. Athens & Sparta and Hellenes Compared
84. Epic Game, and well-deserving of a second look.
85. Initial Impressions & Overview
86. A solid new entry into the block game arena
87. Minireview
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1. Board Game: Hellenes: Campaigns of the Peloponnesian War [Average Rating:7.46 Overall Rank:1982]
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Era: 431 BC – 413 BC (A Geeklist Pick for this Era!)

Conflict: The Peloponnesian War which pitted the superior wealth and naval power of Athens against the militarism of Sparta. It was a bloody contest, with victory by Sparta ending the Golden Age of Greece. Recreate 4 scenarios: The 431 BC Campaign, The Sicily Campaign, The 415 BC Campaign, and The 413 BC Campaign.



“I like the sacrifice and prestige tracks. The dual-nature of the cards is neat.” [20]

"The mechanics all combine to create a great game system that constrains players from being able to plan too far ahead, but still allows them some strategic options." [82]

Want to read a comparison of Hellenes: Campaigns of the Peloponnesian War with Athens & Sparta? Visit here: Peloponnesian War Block Game Comparison

A very nice pictoral review is here: Hellenes: Campaigns of the Peloponnesian War Pictoral Review
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2. Board Game: Athens & Sparta [Average Rating:6.53 Overall Rank:5384]
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Era: 431 BC to 404 BC

Conflict: The Peloponnesian War which pitted the superior wealth and naval power of Athens against the militarism of Sparta. It was a bloody contest, with victory by Sparta ending the Golden Age of Greece.



"...remove the rule that gives Athens a victory by default (if Sparta fails to get 30 VPs). Both sides now win with 30 VPs or more, otherwise the game is a tie. This will force Athens to untake more risky play." [83] (from the game Designer)

"The game really forces both players to devise risky strategies." [84]

"I really like the map in this game. It's color scheme, simplicity, and design really make it stand out." [84]
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3. Board Game: Caesar's Gallic War [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:5947]
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Era: 58 BC - 51 BC

Conflict: This covers Julius Caesar's conquest of Gaul where the Romans fought the Germans and both players sought control of the various Gallic tribes.



“Thematic tweaks: Native units can switch sides and do so frequently, providing an ever shifting landscape. Roman units must return to their base or pay supply, the German player can initiate revolts, causing the Roman player to constantly have to stomp out fires.” [14]

“I love how the cards have multiple purposes (increase supply, march, political action, neutral tribe activation, event), combining the best of the block game and the best elements of the card driven mechanic.” [14]

“Using something closer to the card driven game system introduced in We the People. Cards have up to 4 different uses.” [18]
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4. Board Game: Julius Caesar [Average Rating:7.79 Overall Rank:749]
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Era: 49 BC – 45 BC

Conflict: This recreates the later Roman civil wars where the forces of Caesar are pitted against those of Pompey.



"This one has some interesting ideas, such as only using some of the cards from the deck - thereby insuring no two games are identical." [1]

“this game can have many different strategies every time you play. I also like the reinforcement mechanism.” [7]

“With no home territories the units are a lot more free to roam and there's a lot more fog of war with the block types and strengths. I like the point to point movement, the levies built into the cards, and the geographical quirks of straits and multiple sea major ports. Control of the seas varies from turn to turn and you find yourself planning to make the most of it as the next year it could be a different story.” [12]

“Thematic Tweaks: Roads are the factor that limit movement. Leaders can be captured for VP. Key ancient cities are VP targets. Legions must be started in specific cities, but auxilia can be levied anywhere.”

“I alse prefer these fan-created cards.” CARDS [14]

"Despite its apparent simplicity and short play time, there's a whole lot of game in the box. I think it's the amphibious movement which really opens up the map and gives the game strategic legs. Together with very well balanced asymmetry, this gives it great replay value." [15]

“The asymmetry of both sides and the naval aspect mean no two games play the same. It is wide open and tightly balanced and fog of war works really well.” [18]
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5. Board Game: Crusader Rex [Average Rating:7.17 Overall Rank:1312]
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Era: 1 May 1187 – 9 October 1192

Conflict: This recreates the 3rd Crusade. The Christian Franks or the Muslim Saracens control important cities in the Middle East from Antioch in the north to Egypt in the south. Saladin, who was the epitome of a chivalrous warrior, retained the Holy Land for the Saracens.



"the Third Crusade was the most interesting militarily, as both sides had relative parity on the battlefield. That, plus and asymmetric position make this a winner." [3]

"there are some things -- especially in dealing with siege battles --Harrying, Sallying and the like -- which are tricky" [3]

“2nd edtion has an expanded map, and several rules changes to the 1st edition.” [13]
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6. Board Game: Hammer of the Scots [Average Rating:7.56 Overall Rank:322]
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Era: May 1297 - 22 July 1298

Conflict: This brings the rebellion of the Braveheart, William Wallace, to life. The type of engagement conducted by Wallace was characterized by opportunistic tactics and the strategic use of terrain. This was in stark contrast to the contemporary views on chivalric warfare which were characterized by strength of arms and knightly combat previously used by England. Wallace led the Battle of Stirling Bridge, large-scale raids into northern England, through Northumberland and Cumberland until the Battle of Falkirk.



"Hammer of the Scots is an excellent game, a wargame that appeals to non-wargamers and wargamers alike." [2]

"Dude... You ain't playing 'Halo'... Get over the components." [2]

"1) Asymmetric play. The Scots have different problems and abilities than the English.
2) I like the way that Nobles that are eliminated go to the other side (essentially switching allegiances). I want to see this same system done for War of the Roses.
3) Use of cards to simulate yearly events as well as movement." [4]

"The combination of asymmetry, limited movement, and fog of war makes this just absolutely great fun." [4]

"Victory conditions are wonderful with control of noble households being the key. I think the map is wonderful and the way it plays out very historically correct." [5]

“This a nice light colourful game, and would be very suitable as a first block game for Euro fans.” [5]

“this design elegantly incorporates the chaos of nobles switching sides back and forth over the course of the war for Scottish independence.” [6]

“Wonderful game, simple but deep gameplay with so many options. Each side plays very differently.” [12]

“It does a good job of portraying both the fluid, mobile "guerilla" style of revolt and the set-piece conflicts between large armies.” [21]
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7. Board Game: Richard III: The Wars of the Roses [Average Rating:7.43 Overall Rank:1320]
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Era: 22 May 1455 - 22 August 1485 (A Geeklist Pick for this Era!)

Conflict: This recreates the long and bloody dynastic struggle between the houses of Lancaster and York for the throne of England. This time was marked with vicious military campaigns and rich political struggles surrounding the late rule of the mad-king Henry VI, the Yorkist usurper Edward IV, the bloody rule of Richard III, and the early years of the first Tudor king, Henry VII.



“Thematic Tweaks: Treachery rolls and loyalty ratings allow nobles to switch sides. Death of an heir and appointment of a new senior heir. The King is dead; long live the King!” [14]

"Initiative is important; Loyal troops are important; Control of London is important; Treachery is fun and important; Exile can be an asset..." [80]

"Compared to Hammer of the Scots and Crusader Rex this game is quite a bit simpler." [81]

A very nice pictoral review is here: Richard III Pictoral Review
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8. Board Game: Crown of Roses [Average Rating:6.52 Overall Rank:4959]
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Era: 22 May 1455 – 16 June 1487

Conflict: This is set during the turbulent years of the Wars of the Roses in 15th Century England. This 35-year long conflict saw the extinction of a large number of noble houses, and would eventually set the house of Tudor upon the throne.



“3-hour block game set during the turbulent years of the Wars of the Roses in 15th Century England. This 35-year long conflict saw the extinction of a large number of noble houses.” [7]

“the combat system has a nice tweak to it in that units use dice of different colours - so a blue die hits on a 5-6 and green die only on a 6.” [14]
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9. Board Game: Sekigahara: The Unification of Japan [Average Rating:8.05 Overall Rank:142]
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Era: 21 October 1600

Conflict: This recreates the Battle of Sekigahara, which was part of a campaign that lasted only 7 weeks, during which each side improvised an army and a strategy with what forces their allies could provide. Each leader harbored deep doubts as to the loyalty of his units - for good reason. Several daimyo refused to fight; some even turned sides in the midst of battle. This was fought at a crossroads in Japan and unified that nation under the Tokugawa family for more than 250 years. Re-contest that war as Ishida Mitsunari, defender of a child heir, or Tokugawa Ieyasu, Japan's most powerful daimyo (feudal lord).



“I love the difficult decisions that the card management forces on the players. The game is simple and elegant. I've taught this one to non-gamers, who've enjoyed it enough to request another session.” [11]

“The game is beautiful and the elegance and simplicity of the mechanics make this a must have block wargame.” [12]

"The original use of cards, the diceless combat system, the beautiful asthetics, the brilliant mirroring of theme to mechanism ... Elegant." [15]
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10. Board Game: Pax Baltica [Average Rating:7.35 Overall Rank:2879]
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Era: 22 February 1700 - 10 September 1721

Conflict: Recreate the entire Great Northern War. Karl XII has recently come to power as King of Sweden. Rivals around the Baltic Sea seize the opportunity to get their hands on Swedish territory. An alliance is struck between Denmark, Saxony-Poland, and Russia, the last under the vibrant leadership of Tsar Pyotr. This coalition mobilizes to take advantage of the untried King and break Swedish dominance in the Baltics forever... thus opened the Great Northern War, ravaging Northern and Eastern Europe for over two decades at the beginning of the eighteenth century. By the end of the war, one nation would lose its status as a Great Power, while another would rise to dominate the region for centuries onward.



"It covers a period and place in history that I know very little about, and thus comes as a welcome change of pace." [85]

A very nice pictoral review is here: Pax Baltica Pictoral Review
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11. Board Game: Wilderness Empires [Average Rating:7.14 Overall Rank:7514]
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Era: 1754 - 1763

Conflict: This recreates the French and Indian War. A French wilderness empire stretches across vast tracts of the North American forest, along its rivers and the Great Lakes. It is growing, pushing further south and east. They have embraced and supported a Native American empire in the western wilderness. Both depended on each other for commerce and protection. Both were threatened by British expansion from the east and aligned themselves together to stop it. Then a small skirmish on their frontier ignites a world war that engulfs them all and changes their empires forever.



“The combat system is kind of like 1775: Rebellion and it works to prevent blobbing. Blobbing allows you to take more hits, but not roll any more dice. The card system keeps the game variable.” [18]

“This one works really well: the French and Indian War is not an easy topic to game, but this one pulls it off.” [18]
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12. Board Game: Prussia's Defiant Stand [Average Rating:6.87 Overall Rank:5147]
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Era: 29 August 1756 – 5 May 1762

Conflict: The Seven Years’ War essentially comprised two struggles. One centered on the maritime and colonial conflict between Britain and its Bourbon enemies, France and Spain; This recreates the second conflict which was between Frederick II (the Great) of Prussia and his opponents: Austria, France, Russia, and Sweden. Frederick the Great launched a preemptive strike on Saxony and his archenemy Austria, and his gamble nearly destroyed Prussia, but a few stunning victories over numerically superior forces, many delaying actions, British gold, and the timely death of Tsarina Elizabeth of Russia saved Prussia and ensured Frederick's place in history as a great general.



“It took only a single solitaire game to make it one of my favorite solo games.” [86]

“...the cards are more flexible generally than in Hammer and its breathen, and play more like a typical CDG, like Paths of Glory, but in a much lighter (complexity-wise) way.” [86]

“...the game will reward you with great experience of 18th century warfare feel.” [87]
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13. Board Game: Quebec 1759 [Average Rating:6.95 Overall Rank:2161]
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Era: 13 September 1759

Conflict: This recreates the conflict between the British and the French in Canada during the French and Indian War. A couple months earlier the British take Fort Niagara and the French abandon Crown Point. After these two victories, the British control the entire western frontier. And, the British win the decisive Battle of Quebec. Montcalm and Wolfe, the commanding generals of both armies, perish in battle.



"This game distills to their essence the concepts of feint, maneuver and deception." [1]

"A great starter for the novice block gamer. Simultaneous movement and 'dummy' blocks for deception make it different than War of 1812." [3]

“Not only is there step reduction and fog of war, but movement is simultaneous by writing orders on paper. (don't let that scare you, as there are not that many units or destinations to keep track of).” [5]

“Thematic Tweaks: Hidden movement orders, bluffing, Indian hit and run raids, firing lines and try to break the line.” [14]

“This is the first of the "modern" block games: 1972.” [18]
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14. Board Game: Liberty: The American Revolution 1775-83 [Average Rating:7.17 Overall Rank:2255]
Justin Berman
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White River Junction
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Era: 19 April 1775 - 3 September 1783

Conflict: This recreates the American Revolutionary War from 1775-1783. British, American, and French forces along with the Indians and Navies play a critical role in this war.



“It rewards planning and cautious moves, wise retreats, and the occasional swift and surprising strike.” [7]

“Thematic Tweaks: British rule the seas and can move easily by sea. American units appear throughout the map, while British units (generally) must appear in the Atlantic box.” [14]

“Sea invasions are really cool in this one and the fact that it has the West Indies in it is a unique twist from most American Revolution games. The Atlantic box is a really neat idea.” [14]

“Fun to play, but a historical fail. Holding victory point cities is ahistorical. It's a game of whac-a-mole. It does offer the West Indies, which is cool and unique -- until Joseph Miranda better used them in his American Revolution game. Vague rules on sea invasions doesn't help matters. ” [18]
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15. Board Game: New York 1776 [Average Rating:7.07 Overall Rank:6526] [Average Rating:7.07 Unranked]
Justin Berman
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Era: 27 August 1776 – 26 December 1776

Conflict: The New York 1776 Campaign of the American Revolution pitted a newly formed American army, comprised of Continentals and militia, facing a large, highly disciplined British army that included a significant number of Hessian soldiers. This campaign involved the largest number of troops of the war. An inexperienced army faced a very experienced one. It unfolded with an intricate set of maneuvers around New York City and its waterways involving a large British fleet executing numerous amphibious landings in an effort to trap the Colonials. The Americans just barely escaped to live and fight another day.



“A campaign game rather than a single battle, with a tactical combat aspect for battles handled separately.” [7]

“elegant action point system... rules for the morale of the militia and them breaking (running away) at inopportune times... great game with many elegant nuances.“ [7]
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16. Board Game: Trenton 1776 [Average Rating:7.07 Overall Rank:9058] [Average Rating:7.07 Unranked]
Justin Berman
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Era: 27 December 1776 - 3 January 1777

Conflict: The Trenton 1776 Campaign of the American Revolution follows the New York 1776 campaign where Washington was chased out of New York into New Jersey with the British storming across the Hudson in hot pursuit. It was a campaign where all seemed lost, was described as the "the times that tried men's souls," was where Washington the hunted became the hunter in a miracle winter campaign across New Jersey, and one that saved the Revolution.


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17. Board Game: Saratoga 1777 [Average Rating:8.03 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.03 Unranked]
Justin Berman
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Era: 5 July 1777 – 19 September 1777

Conflict: The Saratoga 1777 Campaign of the American Revolution resulted in a British defeat that was so shocking that it changed the course of the war. What started as a grand campaign by three British armies to end the rebellion resulted in the defeat of two of them and the capture of the third and largest army. Historically, the Americans had the odds stacked against them and yet pulled off a crushing victory over the greatest military power in the world.


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18. Board Game: Santa Cruz 1797 [Average Rating:7.87 Overall Rank:6076]
Justin Berman
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Era: 22 July 1797 - 25 July 1797

Conflict: This recreates the night battle of Santa Cruz de Tenerife in 1797. British forces led by Rear Admiral Horatio Nelson tried to seize Santa Cruz de Tenerife by direct amphibious assault. The conflict was tense, with lots of British naval movement, Spanish coastal batteries fire and plenty of action in a confuse, see-saw night street fighting. The attack was a total failure and Nelson lost his lower right arm.
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19. Board Game: Bonaparte at Marengo [Average Rating:7.40 Overall Rank:1279]
Justin Berman
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Era: 14 June 1800

Conflict: This recreates the dramatic battle when the French army under Napoleon Bonaparte was taken by surprise and attacked by the Austrian army under General Melas. Outnumbered and out-gunned, the French were defeated and forced to retreat. But later that same day, French reinforcements arrived under General Desaix, and in what amounted to a second battle the French counter-attacked and won - the battle of which Napoleon was always the most proud – Marengo.



"This is one great game, but don't expect it to be like the other block games... The movement/combat system, combined with the board design, are truly innovative." The (sometimes) DEFINITIVE List of Block Games

"Everyone who enjoys block gaming ought to give this one a try." [2]

"It's a good game, no doubt, but a bit on the dryer side of block gaming. I do reccomend it, but I think that if you are going to go for this game, it's better to hold off until Simmons produces the next one, Napoleon's Triumph, which will be a more refined version of his innovative system." [2]

"- Unique combat system (diceless and CRT-less)
- 1.5 hr play time
- Brief rulebook
- The best component quality of any block game (including a real board)
- Extensive support from the designer, including good solitaire and tournament rules" [4]

"The downsides are that the system is counterintuitive, and that there's only one scenario." [4]
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20. Board Game: 1805: Sea of Glory [Average Rating:7.37 Overall Rank:2922]
Justin Berman
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Era: January 1805 - December 1805

Conflict: Napoleon’s Grande Armee’ is encamped along the shores of the English Channel seeking to defeat a naval power from the land. This replays the British naval victory at leading up to and including Trafalgar, one of England’s darkest times during the Napoleonic Wars.



"This is a very tense game for its length. I enjoyed my one play of the campaign game, and it is the only strategic level Age of Sail game that exists, I think." [15]

“...this one also models the tediousness of actually finding the enemy... uses a double-blind system.” [7]

"Sea battles!" [1]
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21. Board Game: Napoleon's Triumph [Average Rating:8.00 Overall Rank:421]
Justin Berman
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Era: 2 December 1805

Conflict: This recreates the battlefield of Austerlitz where an outnumbered French army led by their newly crowned emperor, Napoleon, waited to receive an expected attack by a Russian and Austrian army commanded by the Russian Czar, Alexander. Napoleon lured the Allies into attacking with their left wing, and when the Allies did so, a surprise French counter-attack smashed the Allied right and center, and then surrounded and destroyed the Allied left in one of the most famous and decisive battles in military history.



"Truly sublime, a tour de force in graphics, presentation and game-play." [1]

“Amazingly well thought out (and different) design. Lovely board (could be framed on the wall!), high quality components.” [12]

“the bluffing and the tension; the way he game is open until the end; the way you quickly and effortlessly change perspective from the commander-in-chief to the captain in charge of carrying a particular village; all makes for absorbing and epic games every time.” [12]

“the feel of the Napoleonic era, and how you can see the battle unfold before your eyes: cavalry charges; artillery bombardments; attacks repulsed by infantry standing fast; morale breakdown and retreats...” [12]

"This game is a masterpiece... The mechanisms make sense in the context of the conflict... The learning curve is steep but VERY rewarding. The gameplay itself is very tense." [15]
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22. Board Game: Wellington's War: The Peninsular Campaign 1809-1814 [Average Rating:7.73 Unranked]
Justin Berman
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Era: 2 May 1808 – 17 April 1814

Conflict: Not to be confused with the American Civil War campaign of the same name, this recreates the entire Peninsular Campaign where military conflict between Napoleon's empire (as well as the allied powers of the Spanish Empire), and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland allied with the Kingdom of Portugal, for control of the Iberian Peninsula during the Napoleonic Wars. The war began when the French and Spanish armies invaded and occupied Portugal in 1807, and escalated in 1808 when France turned on Spain, previously its ally. The war on the peninsula lasted until the Sixth Coalition defeated Napoleon in 1814, and is regarded as one of the first wars of national liberation, significant for the emergence of large-scale guerrilla warfare. The map covers Spain, Portugal, and southern France.


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23. Board Game: War of 1812 [Average Rating:6.99 Overall Rank:2153]
Justin Berman
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Era: 18 June 1812 – 24 December 1814

Conflict: This recreates the Anglo-American struggle to control the Great Lakes and Canada. The United States declared war on Britain on the primary grounds for violation of American neutrality caused by British interference with their commerce and shipping. Neither side was prepared for the ensuing struggle. The obvious battleground for the war was British North America, a vast and sparsely settled land now called Canada. The American war-aim was to annex British North America. American strategists decided on an invasion of Upper Canada. What followed was a series of campaigns over thirty months involving the struggle for the lakes and coastal Atlantic areas (New Orleans) to improve communications. Late in 1814 the American and British diplomats signed the Treaty of Ghent.



"This is too good a game to pass without comment. Simple rules, but fascinating gameplay." [1]

"Be sure to use the optional (and very simple) written-orders/simultaneous-moves rule. It ratchets up the tension considerably." [3]

"War of 1812 is a great block game. I know it lacks the chrome of the later games but, what it may miss in the chrome stakes it more than makes up in the game play. The rules are simple and straight forward which allows for ease of play. There are plenty of options and strategies to employ and it is a game worthy of replay!" [3]

"1) It's less complex/easier to learn than the above games.
2) Experienced players can finish a full game in two hours or less.
3) Simultaneous play (via written orders) works very well: quick and clean. It's similar to but better than Quebec, 1759 in this regard.
4) Although it's primarily about land forces, it features simple but engaging naval action as well: ship building and repair, troop transport, amphibious assault, ship-to-ship combat. Controlling two of the three lakes is usually crucial." [4]

“One of the most simple and fun to start your way into block games.” [7]

“I think this is the best introductory block game. I've recommended it quite a few times and no one has been disappointed.” [7]

“Thematic Tweaks: Building boats, control of the Great Lakes.” [14]

“the advanteges of being very simple, easy, and fast to play while still having enough strategy and texture to engage the more serious gamer.” [21]

“War of 1812 to my mind is a perfect start for the soon-to-be-infected-Blockgamer. I have played it with several people who are rather into Euro Games (German Boardgames) and although two of them do not speak nor read English very well (so I had to explain the rules) all were hooked from the beginning”
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24. Board Game: For Honor and Glory: War of 1812 Land and Naval Battles [Average Rating:7.26 Overall Rank:6488]
Justin Berman
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White River Junction
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Era: 21 June 1812 - 29 December 1812

Conflict: This recreates the War of 1812 Atlantic theater where England was at war with Napoleon in Europe and American honor was being tarnished as the British Navy seizes American shipping and impresses her sailors in sight of her shores. America launches a war to regain her honor and perhaps capture Canada from England, thus securing her northern border. The American Navy distinguished itself against the greatest naval power in the world.


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25. Board Game: Borodino: Napoleon in Russia 1812 [Average Rating:7.15 Overall Rank:7542]
Justin Berman
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White River Junction
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Era: 7 September 1812 (A Geeklist Pick for this Era!)

Conflict:
This battle was fought between the Army of Imperial Russia under Kutuzov and Napoleon's Grand Armee. The historical battle involved wave after wave of frontal attacks by both sides, focusing on the Russian redoubts. The battle ended with a French victory, but strategic defeat.



“Over 130 blocks and a mounted map using an area control system.” [7]
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