Grand Tactical Rules

Published by:

Mediaeval Miscellanea
6530 Spring Valley Drive
Alexandria, VA
  22312-2131   USA

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1870 was published in 2001 specifically to accommodate the many large-scale engagements of the Franco-Prussian War, from a few divisions to several corps per side.  The intention was to enable gamers to recreate very large battles without getting bogged down in extraneous details more appropriate for regimental-size skirmishes.  Indeed, the normal command per player in most games is a corps or two: two to six infantry divisions.  Morale and fire modifiers, multiple movement and fire opportunities, and national or troop type nuances have therefore been kept to a minimum in the interest of finishing a reasonably faithful approximation of a large historical battle in an afternoon.  A half-scale variant of the basic rules enables smaller engagements to be fought simply by doubling the number of stands per unit.
  • Designed for fast-paced, accurate resolution of battles: several divisions to multiple corps per side.
  • Options have been kept to a minimum in the interests of completing a reasonably faithful recreation of a large battle in an afternoon.
  • Easy five-phase play sequence; simple, effective command and control system; rapid combat resolution (three tables).
  • Armies compatible with rulebooks for 1859/1864 (Franco-Austrian, & Danish Wars) & 1866 (Austro-Prussian War).
  • Entire game played from one 4-sided “Cheat Sheet”.
  • Suitable for 6mm, 10mm, and 15mm basing systems; 1 inch = 100m; 1 turn = 30 minutes.
  • Covers both Imperial and Republican phases of the war.
  • Includes 14 historical battle scenarios, each with alternative “what if” scenarios.
  • Extensive historical notes, military chronology, and complete Orders of Battle for the entire war.
  • Annotated Bibliography of over 70 entries.

Rules Page

As with the other Grand Tactical Rules booklets, for which 1870 was the model, the rules abound with illustrations and contemporary quotes which serve to explain and exemplify the rules themselves.  Typical pages of the rules section are well-illustrated with examples of play, formation diagrams, and game board photographs.  A multitude of diagrams also helps the gamer understand the nuances of formations, maneuvers, and tactics.

Rules Page

Rules Page

As much a source book as a rule set, the extensive historical notes, military chronology, annotated bibliography and detailed orders of battle for the entire course of the war provide ample reference material for custom designing additional campaigns or battles.  A four-page cardstock “cheat sheet” neatly summarizes everything gamers need to have to run a game, without having to refer to the rules booklet.

Rules Page

Rules Page

Fourteen historical scenarios cover both the Imperial and Republican phases of the war (seven each), and feature detailed maps and complete orders of battle.  Each scenario also includes "what if" variants positing historically plausible alternative missions or forces intended to balance the historical scenario or experiment with different tactical possibilities.

Rules Page

Rules Page

A formation guide helps define the typical 19th century formations used in the rules, summarizing their attributes and limitations.  The booklet even includes a brief tutorial on gameboard-making techniques useful for constructing 6mm terrain boards.

Rules Page

Leboutget

Copious illustrations from period sources have been chosen to impart the feel of the actual battles.  This painting by Speyer shows the 3rd Guard retaking Le Bourget.
The many photos of actual game boards illustrate how play may progress.  Here, a German brigade assaults a French brigade defending an Alsatian town, in 15mm.

Game Board


 
 
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1859 Cover
1859/1864


1866 Cover
1866


1870 Cover
1870