Inspired by rules written by Fr. Aelred Glidden
Written by Jay Stribling

Quick Napoleonics

Last updated 10/15/07


There is really no scale. These rules are can be used for 15mm or 25mm troops. Our 25mm infantry battalions for this game consist of four stands and a battalion in line is 7" long. Our 15mm infantry battalions also consist of four stands and a battalion in line is 4" long. However your troops are organized differently, it will not matter. We eliminate troops by stands.

Items needed to play the game


The Jackson gamers use the following organization for their 25 mm armies. Our infantry battalions for this game consist of four stands, each about 1.75" wide b 2" deep. So a battalion in line is 7" long. The same battalion in column of march is 8" deep and 1.75" wide. An attack column is 3.5" wide and 4" deep. Three or four battalions make up a brigade. Two or three brigades along with a battery make a division. Two divisions along with an artillery reserve of two batteries make a corps. A cavalry division may be attached to a corps.

We use cavalry stands about 2" deep and 2" wide, four of which make up a regiment. Two to four cavalry regiments make a division. Two cavalry divisions, often with a horse battery, make a cavalry corps. In our games, cavalry corps are rare, cavalry divisions usually being attached to infantry corps.

We mount one gun and two gunners on a 2" x 2." Two stands represent a battery. Batteries are usually attached to infantry divisions or corps. The guns used in this game represent "position" or "reserve" artillery batteries. The small "battalion guns" are not represented on the field, they are assumed to be adding their firepower to the infantry battalions.

It is possible to have artillery batteries "stripped" from their divisions and made into a "grand battery." If this is done, the battery must stay intact and in the same position for the entire game.

If your troops are organized differently, it will not matter. We eliminate troops by stands.

Sequence of Play

  1. Attempt to re-order disordered units of both sides. Officers may be moved during this period.
  2. Fire simultaneously both sides' deployed artillery batteries. Place "artillery hit" markers on all units which were hit.
  3. Dice for Initiative - high dice has initiative and must move first.
  4. Side with initiative moves units, or moves units to contact, or deploys units, or rallies units from disorder. Shooting by infantry is incorporated into the melee procedure. Officers may move again along with troops.
  5. Units that were moved to contact with defenders now go through the melee procedure.
  6. This ends the first half-turn.
  7. Second side now has initiative and moves units, or moves units to contact, or deploys units, or rallies units from disorder. Shooting by infantry is incorporated into the melee procedure. Officers may move again along with troops.
  8. This ends the second half-turn
  9. Test all cavalry units that were involved in melee in this turn for "Blown Horses." (optional rule)
  10. Side with initiative moves breakthrough units (except for those with "blown horses" to contact with enemy units, or back to his own lines. Second side now has initiative for breakthrough units (except for those with "blown horses" to contact with enemy units, or back to his own lines.
  11. Test officers who were "in danger" during the turn. Remove if killed or unhorsed.
  12. Test "Staying Power" of units that have lost a stand in this turn.

Staying Power

Units that have lost a stand in the turn must roll a die to see if they will remain or flee the battlefield. NOTE: Units locked in Melee do not test staying power till melee is over.

Modifiers: -1 for each stand lost after the first one lost, -1 Brigadier killed , +1 no enemy units within 24" +1 effective Brigadier attached to unit.


Infantry: deployed into line 5", Attack column 10" column of movement 15"
Cavalry: deployed into line 15"column of movement 25"
Field/Position Artillery: limbered 8", Hand push 1" (after unlimbering)
Horse Artillery Limbered 15"
Brigadiers: 25"

Notes on movement:

Artillery Fire

Effects of Artillery Fire Checks

Results of Artillery fire check:

MODIFIERS to morale test due to FIRE:
+1 The target unit is in column (or limbered Artillery)
+1 The target unit is disordered
+1 for each additional battery firing on the target unit, after the first.
-1 Target unit is behind hedge, wall, or in woods.
-1 Officer attached to target unit
-1 Target unit is unlimbered Artillery
+1 Firing unit is Artillery within 8 inches of the target unit (cannister fire).

Overhead Artillery Fire

Artillery units on elevated positions may fire over friendly units or villages as long as the target is 10" or more past the friendly units or villages.

Artillery units on the flat may fire over friendly units or villages, at targets on elevated positions, as long as the firing unit is 10" or more behind any friendly units or villages.

Arc of Fire

Charges and results

The result of any movement to contact the enemy (a charge) is a melee which is resolved with one or melee resolution checks. Melees are resolved after each half-turn's movement is completed.

Both sides in the melee roll one D6 die, the score of which will be modified.The highest total wins the melee. The loser removes one stand and falls back to the starting position (if the attacker) or one move to the rear (if the defender). Both sides become disordered.

If the modified die scores are equal, then the melee continues to the next turn or half-turn. Both sides become disordered and lose a stand.

MODIFIERS to the die rolls:
+1 British defending in line.
-1 The unit is already disordered
-1 Target unit is Infantry in melee with Cavalry. Infantry in square or other specialized anti-cavalry formation or infantry or artillery protected behind wall or hedge does not take this penalty.
+1 for each additional unit after the first on your side.
-1 Lighter cavalry testing, in melee with heavier cavalry.
-1 Cavalry with blown horses. (optional rule)
-1 Unit has an artillery hit marker.
-2 Target unit is charged from flank/rear
+2 Target unit is behind field works - Cavalry may not charge units in field works.
-1 for each stand the unit has lost.
+1 Officer attached to unit - Note that this endangers the officer.
+1 Defending unit is unlimbered Artillery charged through firing arc.

Misc. Notes on Charging/Melee

Terrain Effects

Through WOODS, through ROUGH, across MAJOR obstacle is:
Infantry 1-2 no movement, 3-5 lose movement, 6 lose movement
Cavalry 1-3 no movement, 4-6 movement halved.
Artillery - no movement across rough terrain, woods or Major obstacle.
Across MINOR obstacle is:
Inf. and Cav. 1 no movement, 2-3 movement halved, 5 lose movement, 5-6 no penalty
Artillery - 1-2 no movement, 3-5 movement halved, 6 no penalty

Units that charge may add 50% to their movement.

Effect of Morale Checks

Players who have the initiative must test morale for all units that they wish to move. Units that fail morale test do not move. They may not deploy or change facing.

Roll a D6 for each unit. Results are as follows:

MODIFIERS to morale test - to try to move. Modifiers are cumulative :
+1 Unit is in column (or limbered Artillery)
+1 Officer is within 6" of unit
-1 If enemy in sight, no friends within 12"
-1 (additional) as above, enemy outnumbering testing unit 2-1, no friends within 12"
+1 Unit in woods (not at edge) Position of FRONT of unit is important here.
-1 For each stand lost by the unit.
-1 Infantry unit outnumbered by enemy cavalry within 24"
-1 Unit is unlimbered Artillery
-1 Unit is disordered
-1 Cavalry with blown horses. (optional rule)
-1 Enemy to rear within 12"

Effect of Officers

Officers not "attached" to units cannot be harmed. Just move out of way of enemy troop movements. If an officer is "attached" TO the unit under fire, or in melee, he adds his +1 modifier to the unit during the turn. However, this results in his being "in danger."

Officers who were "in danger" during the turn test in phase 10 by rolling a D10. If the result is "0" then the officer is killed. If the result is "9" then the officer is unhorsed and is taken to the rear. After the next turn, he may be placed back with his troops. Officers who are unhorsed in melee are captured if their side loses the melee and has to fall back.

Officer with unit can remove disorder. See below under "Disorder." Brigadiers may only be attached to and influence units of their own brigades. The divisional commanders may influence any unit which is part of their division. Corps commanders may influence any unit which is part of their corps. Army commanders may influence any unit in the army.

Aides-de-camp, artillery commanders, or such other officers as you may see fit to commission may influence any units placed under them.

Misc. Rules about Disorder

Units that do not rally from disorder, remain disordered, may attempt to rally from disorder on later turns. Disordered units that move may not attempt to rally.

Disordered units attacked by enemy troops:

The Game-Master

TThe Jackson gamers almost always have an "umpire" or "Game-master" who runs the game but is not a player. He makes final rules interpretations, and these interpretations stand during the course of the game even if patently wrong. He decides what terrain is a major or minor obstacle. He adjudicates any hidden movement or hidden deployment. His word is law during the game.

Misc. Rules

Infantry may not fight in march column.

Disordered units = move. Disordered infantry units may not charge. Disordered cavalry units may charge half move if they have an officer attached.

Optional Rules

Elite & Militia The game-master decides what proportion of units may be elite, or must be militia. The players may then decide which of their units actually ARE elite or militia. Both sides must know which units are elite, but there is no need to inform your enemy as to which of your units are militia. This may be left as a pleasant surprise.

Hidden Units & Off-table units The Game-Master may allow either or both sides to have hidden units or off-board units. He may allow movement around flanks and may construct special rules for this as needed. Hidden units or off-table movement should not be used without a Game-Master.

Aides de Camp Players may allow the army commander one or two "Aides de Camp." These are extra officers that may replace officers which have been killed or unhorsed. They should stay next to the Commander-in-Chief and be sent to specific units for specific tasks, returning to the C-in-C when the task is complete.

Blown Horses At the end of the turn, each player rolls a D6 for each of his mounted units which were involved in a melee or a charge (even if for some reason a melee did not result). If the die result is 5 or 6, that unit's horses are "blown" and it will move at half-rate until if has stood motionless for a turn. Blown units may not take advantage of breakthroughs.

Notes by authors

This set of rules is considerably modified from our "quick Tricorne" rules set. This was written By Fr. Aelred Glidden and appeared in an issue of MWAN.

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