Funny Little Wars: Games of War in the Garden with Classic Toy Soldiers in the Spirit of Mr. H G Wells

Overview

Padre Paul Wright has written an "instant classic" already receiving wide praise from readers and hobby magazine editors. FLW both leads and follows the growing interest in 54mm war games and figures.

Written in part as a tribute to HG Wells' ground breaking "Little Wars," FLW is a much expanded and broadened modernization. There is a fascinating chapter devoted to Wells the Man and his journey with his "Little Wars" from inception to the day in 1916 when he put the game away ...

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Overview

Padre Paul Wright has written an "instant classic" already receiving wide praise from readers and hobby magazine editors. FLW both leads and follows the growing interest in 54mm war games and figures.

Written in part as a tribute to HG Wells' ground breaking "Little Wars," FLW is a much expanded and broadened modernization. There is a fascinating chapter devoted to Wells the Man and his journey with his "Little Wars" from inception to the day in 1916 when he put the game away for good. For Wells' fans, The Padre may surprise with information you did not know, or could even guess.

Retaining many of Wells' original rules (spring-loaded toy cannon, etc), there are additional rules for Shell Bursts, machine guns, observation balloons and aircraft, field hospitals, supply wagons and dumps, spies, military bands, unit Colors and Standards, Brigade and Division Commands, hidden movement, skirmishers, snipers, signals, morale, variable effects of terrain and more.

Infantry units are 20 figures strong, Cavalry 12, and Artillery can appear as single Guns with crews, or as Batteries up to three strong. From 2 to 4 such units typically form a Brigade, the perfect command for each Player. Two or more Brigades form a Division, allowing a Player to act as his side's C-in-C.

Brigade and Divisional HQ's are represented by variable numbers of Staff and ADC's, marching on foot, mounted on prancing steeds, or even seated in Rolls Royce, Cadillac, Renault, or other grand Staff Cars from the Golden Age of Motoring.

These HQ's send orders to the units on the firing line, and back to the Brigadiers and Generals, come reports from scouts--and desperate messages from the front delivered by Runners-- and even Pigeons!

There is far less abstraction in "Funny Little Wars" on your lawn than on the traditional table top, yet games can be played there as well.

Toy soldiers can range from antique and modern "Collectibles," to readily available plastics. There are detailed lists for 14 different Armies identified by their "Colors" ("Army Red," "Army Black," "Army Red/Gold," etc) with complete information to build your favorites. Each Army has unique strengths and weaknesses, and a personality suggesting its historical counterpart.

FLW represents the years prior WW I, when war was still romantic, the uniforms were dashing, and the Generals still waltzed. Padre Paul's rules reflect the late Victorian/Edwardian spirit in both substance and his delightful writing style. Designed for "The Better Sort of Chap," the book contains suggestions for proper Dress during the game, etiquette on the field, and more. Nor are the Ladies and "Girls of the better sort" forgotten. The Padre's Wife, Georgina, provides a charming account of a proper dinner served after an especially Gentlemanly game at Dover Castle during one golden Summer.

The Basic Rules actually occupy only 10 pages, but the many Optional Rules allow players to set their own levels of play. There are lists of providers of toy soldiers in every price range, as well as accessories. Sections describe how to set up a yard, park, beach, etc, to be your Battlefield.

Rules for basing figures are flexible, there are no complex rules, with only 6 sided dice and measuring tapes required--and a beautiful day under the shade of the trees. Childlike, but never "Childish," FLW returns to the Hobby's roots as we play once more with toy soldiers as we did as kids.

There are optional record sheets included, many color photos of toy soldiers at play throughout, and the Padre's wit, charm, unabashed love of toy soldiers.

Read "Funny Little Wars" and relive the time when the world was young!

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780615959825
  • Publisher: The (Virtual) Armchair General Publishing
  • Publication date: 1/30/2014
  • Pages: 152
  • Product dimensions: 8.50 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 0.39 (d)

Meet the Author

Author Padre Paul Wright may be a man born almost exactly a century too late. His love of toy soldiers--everything from the original ancient and honorable 54mm Britains, to the most affordable plastic figures in the same scale now so readily available--the Padre owns them all. And what he can't find, he converts with aplomb.

A veteran serving soldier in the British Army, husband and father of four, is also a recognized expert and enthusiast of HG Wells' and famous garden toy soldier game, Little Wars, first published in 1913.

A lifetime admirer of Wells, the acknowledged founder of the modern hobby of miniature war gaming, the Padre felt that the Master's work could be modernized in several ways to make it more challenging--and frankly fun!--for not only novices, but today's sophisticated war gamers. So his first book, Funny Little Wars (FLW), has succeeded in keeping the charm--and even innocence--of Wells' original work representing the pre-Great War era. He has made a wonderful game for the lawn or table top, whose success is proved by the ever growing number of readers, and the seemingly endless supply of new products in support.

Padre Paul has recently reinforced Funny Little Wars to include HG Wells' ideas for war games garden campaigns in a new companion volume, Little Campaigns (LC). For novices and veterans alike, here is an opportunity to experience still more of the imaginative--and yet pacifist!--visions of HG Wells.

With both volumes currently available (and more to come!), Padre Paul has recaptured those Edwardian days of golden summer: Players moving miniature ranks of heroically uniformed toy soldiers, the scent of the grass, all under the cool shade of the trees.

FLW has been featured in the New York Times and on the BBC. It is a guide book and tribute to the original Little Wars and recreates this lost world for the modern reader and player.

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