“Black Powder” rules by Warlord Games

I admit it – I bought this set of rules for the 18th-19th Centuries mainly because it looked pretty.


Well – the book is pretty. Big, hardcover, full colour thoughout and filled with wonderful pictures of gorgeously painted miniature soldiers and glorious wargamig tables filled with top class terrain pieces. And it’s not expensive. And behold! It’s made in the EU!

How about the rules themselves?

Well – they are not especially comprehensive. They are rather on the light side, and are quite generic. I can hear the detractors complaining that all period flavour is lost when using the same rules for the War of the Spanish Succession and the British Sudan campaigns of the late 19th Century.

This does not mean the rules themselves do not deserve to be read or played; it only means that the stress is on playing the game, having a good evening with the wargaming buddies and enjoying the sight of so much state-of-the-art lead.

That, my friends, is the stated target of the book. I would even go a little farther and say that, much in the vein of the Games Workshop emporium, the rules are but an excuse for buying, painting and fielding huge quantities of 28mm metal or plastic soldiers, to the joy of figure manufacturers.

These rules are clearly in another league than those dry and hyperdetailed sets by WRG, Tabletop, Newbury, etc. with that absolute lack of pictures and tremendously complicated statements (made necessary by the former). Wargaming now gets new blood through the visual appearance – no longer through the realism or supposed realism of yesteryear.

Must be the sign of the times.


~ by G. K. Zhukov on March 3, 2010.

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