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Eric Wood's quick rules for American Civil War Battles

Civil War

MOVE (Note - When "Wheeling", measure side that moves the most. Formation changes are by card.)
DistanceMove ThruTerrainOn Road
Infantry Line 1 Span +1 AP +1 AP Free
Infantry Column2 Spans+1 AP width wise, N/A lengthwise+1 AP Free
Sharpshooter or Spy2 Spans+0 AP+0 APFree
Cavalry Line 2 Span OR 3 straight +1 AP +2 AP Free
Cavalry Column3 Span OR 4 straight+1 AP width wise, N/A lengthwise+2 APFree
Mounted C-in-C3 Span OR 4 straight+0 AP+0 APFree
Limbered Artillery2 Span OR 3 straightN/A+2 APFree

Note - Rules regarding 1) Cavalry denying melee to infantry, and 2) Voluntary withdraw from melee.

MISSILE (Note - Can't fire if enemy is in contact with you. Don't measure distance until firing.)
(Note - Command stands are assumed to have similar weapons as troops they are with.)
Spy - PistolN/A1 SpanNo -N/ANo180 degrees
SharpshooterN/A6 SpansNo+2 to roll N/ANo45 degrees
Cavalry - Carbines22 SpansNo+2 dismounted
+0 mounted
N/ANo45 degrees
Infantry - Rifles25 SpansNo- N/ANo45 degrees
Infantry - Muskets23 SpansNo-2 to roll N/ANo45 degrees
Cannon - Cannister13 SpansYes+1 to roll N/AYes45 degrees
Cannon - Solid Shot1BoardYes- -2 to rollYes45 degrees

# of Rolls (slow method) = 1 roll/casting (Note: Split Fire by reducing castings firing at target)
# of Rolls (fast method) = 1 roll/stand (Note: Split Fire by reducing stand firing at target)

Roll Adjustments
+1 to roll Target is in dense formations (march column)
-1 to roll If Cannon and Smoke is Present
-1 to roll Target is Skirmishers, Unlimbered Artillery, C-in-C, Spy, or Sharpshooter
+1 to roll Enfilade Fire
Target Number to Hit
1 span away3+
2 spans away4+
3 spans away5+
4+ spans away6

DEFENSE (Note - Defense reduces hits for EACH regiment's attack against the target.)

Missile Defense
If in woods +2
In wooden buildings or behind wooden fences+1
In stone buildings or behind stone walls+2

Deaths = Hits from missile fire or melee - Defense = number of dead castings. Half of cavalry stand deaths from cannon or rifle fire occur to horses so replace with dismounted figures armed with carbines and sabers.

Leader Death? If a regiment is attacked by melee or shot, the command stand is hit on a 6 on the die. Sharpshooters can pick the command stand without this roll. After determining it is a command stand hit, roll for the casualty (1-2 4th Man, 3-4 Musician, 5 Standard Bearer, 6 Leader). Sharpshooters cannot pick which casting on the command stand was hit. In cases of multiple hits, continue rolling for command stand hits until fail.

MELEE (Note - Melee occurs at end of each side's actions for all opposing forces in contact.) Fleeing units cannot fight. Sharpshooters and spies die automatically in the open, otherwise fight normally (hitting only on 6) in the terrain.

# of Rolls (slow method) = 1 roll/casting
# of Rolls (fast method) = 1 roll/stand

Roll Adjustments
+1 to roll (+2 if rear) Flank
+1 to roll/position For each Advantageous Position
-2 to roll In "March Column" or Limbered Artillery

Target Number to Hit
Cavalry 3+
Infantry 4+
Command Stand or Artillerist 6

Melee Pushback
Whichever unit lost the most troops is pushed back one span distance. Artillerists leave cannon if pushed back. Winner claims the battle spot.

FLEE? Note - Don't roll if killed opponent or no one in the unit died this turn.
# of Rolls (slow method) = 1 roll/casting (Note: Parts of stands can flee.)
# of Rolls (fast method) = 1 roll/stand (Note: Parts of regiments can flee.)

Roll Adjustments
+2 to roll (+3 if C-in-C) N/A if leader not in the group touching affected stand.
+1 to roll/position For each Advantageous Position
-1 to roll (-2 if rear) Attacked in Flank
-2 to roll Attacked while in "March Column" formation
-1 to roll/death beyond 1st one Per death in the regiment this turn beyond the first death.

Target Number to Stand and Not Flee (Natural roll of 6 is always success)
Vs. Melee Vs. Missile Fire
Command or Artillerist 3+ 2+ (two tries)
Infantry2+ 2+ (two tries)
Cavalry1+ 2+ (two tries)

If fail, continue fleeing away. Move the stand 1 span backwards immediately and turn them away from the enemy. Cannot fight back in melee or fire. Artillerists leave cannon.

Morale Clock
Starts at 2/3 of total stands. -1 per destroyed stand. -1 per leader killed. -1 if lost camp. +1/turn with no losses yet opponent suffered a destroyed or fleeing stand.

Unit Size - The battle is assumed to be 4 regiments each. A regiment has on average of 5 companies and a command company. A company is a stand of 4 men. Parts of regiments can advance independent of each other, however attached leader affects only extend to section of touching stands. There are two artillery stands and a single sharpshooter casting per player. There is a single mounted C-in-C and spy (moves forward into enemy territory to scan for hidden troops) per side.

"Span" = the distance from the tip of your thumb to the tip of your index finger. This will vary by player.

"Light" Formations
Single Line0 0 0 0 0 0
Double Line0 0 0
0 0 0
"Dense" Formations
March Column0 0
0 0
0 0
Fast, Easy Missile Target
Poor Melee, Hurts Morale

Action Points (AP) = 1d6 per leader. Each player on a side starts with a leader per regiment (4 colored dice) and the overall commander player has a C-in-C (1 white dice). Colored dice's APs are only useable on your own troops. The white die's APs are usable by any player on your side. When command stands die, the AP dice are reduced. When APs are gone, then its other side's round.

Artillery Smoke - Affects firing if not removed. Costs an action point (AP) to remove. It does not require a card to remove.

Rifle Smoke - Only used to mark whom fired this round. Remove prior turn's smoke at the beginning of your turn.

Cards - Card-flipping costs an action point (AP). Can use card's effect at the cost of an AP per stand. No stand may use a card twice.

Card List - Make a card for each of these, shuffle into a deck:

  1. Sharpshooters - Move OR Fire
  2. Leaders -Move 1 AP AND/OR Rally Fleeing Troops +1 AP AND/OR Join Two Similar Troops +1 AP
  3. Infantry - Move
  4. Unfired Rifle - Fire (only if not fired this turn)
  5. Stationary Rifle - Fire (only if not moved this turn)
  6. Any unit in "March Column" formation - Move
  7. Formation Change
  8. Flee! - Mandatory - Move
  9. General Advance - All units - Move
  10. Cavalry - Move
  11. Artillery - Fire OR Limber OR Unlimber OR Move if limbered OR Pivot then fire OR Reload
  12. Rally - Auto with leader, Leaderless units rally on 6.
  13. Leader Inspires Men - Single regiment w/ attached leader - Any single action
  14. Reshuffle (Note: Break into 2 halves, reshuffle both, place Reshuffle card in bottom half.)

Cavalry Fallback from Infantry Charge - Cavalry units can fall back 1 span beyond the end point of the infantry's move to avoid contact (and thus melee) with infantry. If the cavalry fall back, they cannot charge that same unit later in the turn.

Voluntary Retreat from Melee - Units moving away from melee must be turned facing away from melee.

Union Morale Clock (starts at 15)
Broken Command

Confederate Morale Clock (starts at 15)
Broken Command


New rules -
Low Ammo - If all men in a unit hit, then the unit gets a low ammo marker. A low ammo marker reduces the number castings eligible to fire, until resupplied.
Troop Recovery - A d6 for union/ d4 for confederate stands of new recruits enlisted, wounded healed, fleeing returning prior to next battle. Half are new recruits (round up). Half are veterans from the prior battle. This number can be kept secret.
Randomize Terrain - Each battle has random terrain.
Deny Battle - Army denying combat loses a stand, terrain is rolled for next battle, then see if deny battle again.

Camp - +1 stand of troops
Hospital - +1 stand recovers. Person chooses which unit to recover.
Supply Train - ignore low ammo markers.
Recruiters - +2 stands of raw recruits
Signal Corp - Balloons, Telegraph, etc.
Engineering Corp - bridges, railroad destruction, pontoons, entrenchments

You can contact Eric Wood, the author of these rules at:

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