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Introduction by David Drake

 


Miniature wargaming involves moving figurines of soldiers and vehicles across contoured terrain against one or more opponents doing the same thing. Rules of varying complexity cover movement and combat. Figurines (OK, toy soldiers) are molded in many scales, but for ground combat 25-millimeter--that is, a human figure is roughly an inch high--provides a good balance between detail and awkwardly large playing surfaces.


Miniature wargames have a long and honorable history. The Prussian general staff used a variation (sand table exercises) to teach tactics, and H. G. Wells developed a set of rules. (By the way, Wells' rules leave a good deal to be desired. Battles played according to them tend to devolve into squads creeping through alleys behind a field gun.)


In Great Britain, miniature wargaming is big business. Most of the gaming-related materials which one sees in the US--Osprey books and Warhammer 40K, for example--are spillovers from British industry. A British wargamer, Dr. John Lambshead (in his day job he's the man you see to learn about the home life of the marine nematode) contacted me. From him I learned that the Hammer series has a cult following in Britain even though the books have never been well distributed there.


With my enthusiastic approval, John and another wargamer, John Treadaway (a graphics designer who already had a Hammer's Slammers website), put together a proposal for a Hammer's Slammers wargame book and associated figurines. Pireme Publications

http://www.miniwargames.com/

bought the proposal; the book itself should be out around Christmas, 2003. Ground Zero Games are casting the miniatures and metal details for the vehicles, while Old Crow are molding the vehicle hulls and turrets from resin. (Copies will be available from

http://www.oldcrowmodels.co.uk

shortly.)


The section on this CD includes much of the text from the book. The game rules themselves aren't included, but there are tables and specifications which wouldn't fit in the printed version. In addition there's as many of the graphics, both drawings and photos of painted figurines, as were available before this CD had to be put to bed.


I couldn't be happier with the results. These are the concrete expressions of the men and equipment which were often much fuzzier before John Treadaway and I spent a great deal of time refining them.


Dave Drake
david-drake.com


 


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