1866, published in 2010, is the last of the Grand Tactical Rules trilogy
for the mid-19th century wars of transition. It covers the Austro-Prussian
War in Bohemia, the “German War” by Prussia and its allied contingents against
Austria’s Federal German allies, and Italy’s third War of Independence against
Austria in northern Italy.
The basic Grand Tactical Rules were modified to accurately reflect each side’s
strengths and weaknesses – Prussia’s formidable fire doctrine and Austria’s
fervent adherence to shock combat – while giving each side the means to win
within these historical parameters. The core rules, however – the command
control, movement, fire, melee, and morale mechanics – are still as they were
in the original 2001 vintage 1870 rules. If it
worked, it hasn’t been touched.
In addition to the basic “grand tactical” scale, half and quarter-scale variants
give 1866 gamers the option to play smaller battles, with just two or three
divisions per side down to engagements involving just a few regiments.
Designed for fast, accurate resolution of battles with minimal tables (3) and modifiers.
Options have been kept to a minimum in the interests of completing a reasonably faithful
recreation of a large battle in an afternoon.
Includes three different scales, for large battles at the grand tactical level
(several corps per side), and small-scale engagements down to regimental level.
Streamlined turn sequence; simple, proven command and control system; straightforward
Two 4-sided “Cheat Sheets” included, for two different scale games. Suitable for
6mm, 10mm, and 15mm basing systems; 1 inch= 100m; 1 turn = 30 minutes.
Includes 14 historical battle scenarios (8 in Bohemia, 5 in Germany and 1 in
Italy), each with several historical variants.
Extensive historical notes, military chronologies, and orders of battle.
Annotated Bibliography of over 90 entries.
Compatible with the “1870” rules for the Franco-Prussian
War, and the 1859/1864 rules for the Franco-Austrian &
The usual format of well-illustrated and clearly written rules was followed in the
1866 booklet which in addition includes updates to past rules, based on continuing
play and user inputs.
As in the previous 1859/1864 and 1870
booklets, about 80 percent of 1866 is devoted to detailed historical notes,
background information, orders of battle, and an extensive annotated bibliography.
Fourteen exhaustively-researched historical battle scenarios are included, with
detailed maps and complete orders of battle and appearance. These cover the
seven major battles in Bohemia (the massive Königgrätz battle is divided into two
parts); five in Germany, and one in Italy.
Even more diagrams and examples of play are included, together with the usual
stunning assortment of period graphics, pithy quotes and a summary "cheat sheet"
from which the game can be played. Exclusive in this booklet is a
comprehensive listing of figure sources for the entire period.
Austrian painter Fritz Neumann captured the final, successful Austrian assault on
Italian-held Custoza at the culmination of the big 24 June battle – seven years
to the day after Austria’s debacle at Solferino (see the 1859
rules for details on that one).
In this re-play of the Gitschin scenario, history is definitely not repeating itself.
The Allied player is aggressively counter-attacking the lead elements of the Prussian’s 5th
Division with all available forces: one Saxon and two Austrian brigades, plus cavalry
and artillery. Another Saxon brigade is coming up to support what became a surprisingly