Fields of Honor
Finding orcs vs. dwarves somewhat passé? Imperial Stormtroopers a
tedium? Fancy a change of pace? Then do yourself a favour and pick up Fields of
Honor. A new set of miniatures rules, they don't allow you to play more cliched
LOTR battles or boring gothic SF, nope; Fields of Honour is a set of miniatures
rules for the wars of the 19th century. Yeah, that's right - a set of
Now before you fall into a stupor brought on by the memories of those
fascinating (not) history lessons at school, take it from me that when your
outnumbered force has been stalked through the Khyber Pass by hordes of blood
thirsty Afghans, or your battle weary troops finally manage to carry the Union
positions at Gettysburg, then you'll find that 19th century warfare is anything
but boring (probably why they don't tell you about it at school).
Fields of Honor is an ambitious set of rules in that it claims to cover all of
the military conflicts from the end of the Napoleonic Wars in 1815 through to
the end of the Second Boer War in 1902, which, bearing in mind the disparate
forces and types of warfare from major European style wars such as the Franco
Prussian and American Civil Wars to the smaller scale colonial conflicts
typified by the Absyssinian Campaign of 1868 and the US Plains Indian Wars, is
no mean feat. Yet it succeeds by virtue of a good simple system and an
innovative sliding scale for unit size that allows battle to vary in size from
Section (10 - 15 men) to Brigade (1000 - 3000 men) level. The surprising thing
is that it doesn't just work, it works very well.
While covering all the basics you'd expect to find in any good set of
miniatures such as unit organisation, combat, morale and orders, the rules
also include another excellent section on giving your sub-commanders
personalities, which certainly results in making the game challengingly
realistic. This section works so beautifully that it is worth poaching for
other miniature games regardless of the period.
With details on national characteristics, wars and battles of the period,
terrain generation and ideas on campaigns this is a very fine set of miniatures
rules and one with high production standards to boot.
Although a set of historical rules, there is no reason why they couldn't be
used to play out Space 1889 or Castle Falkenstein style miniatures games with
very little effort on behalf of the umpire.
Overall: Don't worry if you don't know your dervishes from your dongas, this
excellent set of rules provides all you need to start gaming in the diverse
wars of the 19th century, and, should you find yourself out in the Sudan with
hordes of Fuzzy Wuzzys about to overrun your position, just fix bayonets and
recall the immortal words of Corporal Jones, "They don't like it up 'em!".
Review by Steve Blease
Product supplied by Caliver Books