Photo by Lori Brom at RECON 2004


Howdy Pardners! - updated January 2011

"A steady hand and a bad look in his eye". One of a series of images taken by Skip Nicholson of Oklahoma City. Not a Jackson Gamer, but a good painter and a rootin-tootin good cameraman. The figure was painted by Russ Haynes, an honorary Jackson Gamer!


Photo by Jim Pitts

A batch of us met at Jay's for a Wild West shoot-em-up game run by John Switzer on January 15, 2011. We used The Rules with No Name and had a blast. It seemed for the first several turns that nobody could hit anybody and that all our guns were defective (we had a number of weapons jam). But soon the action got close and bloody. A game report has been posted on the Jackson Gamers blog e of days.

An image of some of the "outlaws" in their sepia finery is shown above. From left to right: "Taco" Smith, Bill Green, "Strongarm" Jack (the leader), "Big-Eyed" Bill, and Z.Z. Bottom. These gentlemen were in town to arrange for the release from Jail of Strongarm Jack's brother Darryl, and possibly to float a loan at the bank. By the end of the game, Brother Darryl was free, but after a difference of opinion between Jack and the Pinkertons, "Strongarm" lay dead in the street.

You may view Jim Pitt's account of this vicious gunfight on: THE JACKSON GAMERS' BLOG

Photo by Jim Pitts

The aftermath of the 9th Cavalry's charge with wounded left lying under the bows of the Indians, who are whooping it up on the hillside. For some reason they decided not to come down to capture the wounded "Buffalo soldiers." This was during our game Hostiles in Sight played on February7, 2009 at THE CHINA INN Restaurant in Pearl Mississippi.

Photo by Jim Pitts

Whooping it up, one of the five Indian war parties, under the leadership of Squatting Buffalo, leave the reservation. Scouts report back to Colonel Campbell, who in turn alerts the cavalry for immediate departure from the fort.

We tried Larry Brom's rules set Bugles, Boots and Saddles at HOBBYTOWN USA in Flowood MS in March 2007. Our game report is here at Raid on Simpson's Mine.

Photo by Jim Pitts

The mounted warriors of chief Squatting Buffalo (Jay Stribling) ride over Medicine Lodge Ridge. Suddenly the mundane job of the wood cutting party has gotten more serious.

This 25mm game was played at HOBBYTOWN USA in Flowood MS on November 18, 2006. You can see the result of the attempt to cut fire wood for the winter by veiwing our battle report at The Woodcutters' Massacre.

Photo by Jessie Stribling

The machine gun in action during our "Save the Missionaries" game. When three French missionaries were taken by the Indians, Col. Bushy-Beard rode to the rescue. It did not go well for the white man. You can read about this game which we played at HOBBYTOWN USA in North Jackson on October 29, 2005.

Photo by Ed Sansing

An overhead view of the saloon in our Mayhem in Wheat City game. Two of the shootists are down along with an Indian. Another Indian is trying to get to the liquor through the last shootist and a drunk is trying to woo a barmaid. I would like to stress that the Shootists were just lounging in the saloon waiting for the payroll to show up so they could relieve the Army of it's weight.

Suddenly Indians burst in through the windows, looking for liquor. Since they were between the Indians and the bar, the Indians attacked them. I'm sure that if only the Indians had asked, they would have moved out of the way. BUT NO!! They weren't even given that chance and by the end of the 2nd turn two of the Shootists were dead and the other hit (just pinked).

Thusly, Ed Sansing (the gamer running "the Shootists") describes his attempt to stay low and out of the way till the Army payroll arrived on the daily stagecoach!

Photo by Jay Stribling

Our game on June 1, 2002 was A HARD DAY AT BALLYHOO. This picture shows a meeting of the minds - and the bullets - in front of the bank. Note the guards on the roof of the bank and on the feed store to the right. Two Mexicans, two townies and a gunfighter all debate for the right to enter the banking house. The blacksmith works placidly on to the right.

Click here for more photos and a game description.

The harsh western sun is captured well in this image by Fred Diamond. The jerkwater town of Ballyhoo has just had the combined 4th of July and Cohen Brothers Circus parade. Now people are strolling along the boardwalks to the end of main street where the circus tent is set up.

What a show this will be. Listen to those fire-crackers...them aint fire-crackers! The Snodgrass boys are hittin the bank!

In our wildest "old west" game yet, the infamous "Snodgrass gang" return to loot the town of Ballyhoo. Complicating the afternoon's entertainment is the Mexican bandito "El Roho" and his cousins. Gunslingers, armed townies, Cowpokes, Italian tourists, Chinese laundrymen, and a rampaging circus elephant all raced up and down the single dusty street of this western town. You can click on Celebration for some photos and a description of this game, played on January 4, 2003.

Figure painted by Russ Hayes, Photo by Skip Nicholson

Jay Ainsworth was game-master at Simpson's Valley at his home on December 15, 2001. This was the action where the cavalry whipped the Apaches and made the valley free for commercial exploitation by the railroad. Both Cavalry and indians were surprised at how quickly it all happened. We played this on December 15, 2001 at Jay Ainsworth's home in Raymond MS. The battle was fought with The Sword and the Tomahawk rules variant for Larry Brom's The Sword and the Flame colonial rules. Tim Latham took the pictures.

Jay Stribling ran a "last man standing" game of an old west shootout which we played on March 3, 2001. The game is called "Shootout at Pathos". The dusty town was overrun by small parties of hard men (and tough women) each pursuing thier own agenda.

Who would be the survivors? Would it be the Sherrif, the Mexicans, the drifters, the Great Lady? (Does this sound like a TV show?) Every group had individual victory conditions. Click on the the name above to view the chaos and mayhem.

Jay Ainsworth was the game-master of an old west battle which we played on February 3, 2001. The game is called "Shotgun Flats" after the name of the miserable little town. The native americans had long been incensed by the inability of the town barkeep to supply fire-water in large quantities and his reluctance to take buffalo chips as legal tender. They decided to reallocate his inventory and set up a new not-for-profit retail distribution center (steal all his likker!).

The town's mayor telegraphed to the territorial govenor who rushed a platoon of militia infantry to the town and asked the U.S. Cavalry to intervene. Four troops of cavalry departed fort LePetomayne along with three wagons of class IV potable supplies (3 wagons of likker).

The indians had to stop the cavalry from reaching the town. The cavalry had to stop the red men from taking the town and stealing all the likker! Click on the game's name above to see what transpired.

Jay Ainsworth re-ran the same game as listed below at HOBBYTOWN on November 4, 2000. This time the White man triumphed over the red, saving the humble town from devastation at the hands of the Indians. The battle report and three pictures by Tim Latham are here and Jim Pitts promises more photos later when his film is processed. (This game report is no longer available)

Jay Ainsworth hosted a Cavalry and Indians game at his home on October 7, 2000. The Indians proved too much for the white man. The report of the disaster and pictures by Tim Latham are here for your enjoyment. (This game report is no longer available)

Figure painted by Russ Hayes, Photo by Skip Nicholson

John Switzer ran two play test games at his home to try out the rules variant The Tomahawk and the Flame which are on our Jackson Gamers' rules page. He sent some marvellous photos of the first battle to me but no text, so I completely fabricated a battle report. Then he sent more photos and text of the second battle. (These game reports are no longer available)

Jay Ainsworth was game master at a 25mm "Injun Wars" game at Hobbytown on July 15, 2000. Tim Latham took pictures and sent them me. Jay used a modified set of the Brother vs. Brother ACW skirmish rules set. (This game report is no longer available)


THE RULES WITH NO NAME Written by Brian Ansell and originally available on the web for free, they are now available in hardback form, expanded and with more illustrations from "The Foundry."

BUGLES, BOOTS N' SADDLES A rules set for Cavalry vs Infantry fights in the old west, by Larry Brom.

THE SWORD AND THE FLAME A rule set for colonial war games, written by a former member of our group, Larry Brom. TSATF has been "streeeched" to fit all manner of periods other than the ones it was originaly written for. One of these periods is the indian wars of the old west.

THE TOMAHAWK AND THE FLAME This Old West variant for Larry Brom's rules set was written by Hans von Stockhausen, and posted to the Colonial One-list by Ken Hafer. I have posted it here with Ken's permission after it was removed from the Colonial list.


FILL YORE HANDS! are a set of variant rules to be used with "DESPERADO". It uses the Desperado move system and the "to hit" mechanics, but introduces new rules for wounds, and a new system to decide who fires first. New hand to hand rules are incorporated, along with a standard set of characteristics that may be rolled for to individualize the various shootists. We used these in our "Celebration" game, played February 1, 2003.

SKIRMISHING, SHOOTING, & SCALPING are a set of rules concepts that were inspired by a remark on the COLONIAL discussion list. We used these rules ideas in our "Shotgun Flats" game on February 3, 2001.

DESPERADO and it's supplementDESPERADO II are very simple but fun rules for western gunfights.

"You coundn't hit the broadside of a...OW!
Figure painted by Russ Hayes, Photo by Skip Nicholson


When we play old west games, often each player or group of players has differing victory condtions. A bunch of "What ya got ta do t'win boy!" conditions are shown here:

"Western Gunfight Victory Conditions."


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