The Dark Age of Britain, from the middle of the 4th century to the end of the 8th, was a time of violence and warfare, when charismatic warlords such as the fabled King Arthur could gather together armies and carve out their own kingdoms. With this new set of wargames rules, players can take on the role of these warlords and command their own armies on the tabletop. Written by the author of the popular Glutter of Ravens rules set, Dux Bellorum is an element-based system, where each base of figures represents 50 fighting men. Each player has a specific number of points with which to construct his force and can choose a Late Roman, Romano-British, Welsh, Saxon, Pictish, Irish, or Sea Raider army, amongst others. The game is then played out following a set of simple, fast-paced rules. A completely self-contained gaming system, Dux Bellorum is perfect for gamers who are looking for a way into fighting Dark Age battles without investing a lot of time or money in larger rulesets.
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Number of pages: 64
Weight: 214 g
Dimensions: 248 x 184 x 5 mm
A long awaited book, I must say. Subtitled Arthurian Wargaming Rules AD 367-793, this set in written by one of the era's experts - and a gamer to boot - and marks Osprey's latest foray into the crowded rules market. Indeed 'period-specific' is the key - narrow focus and elegant rules to fit the period and small army size. The lists provide allies, and have 'early', 'middle' and 'late' options to ensure historical opponents, which is doubleplusgood. All the usual suspects are there in lists - plus the idea of 'Land' and 'Sea Raiding' variants, for when you want bards to write heroic poetry about you. Additional optional rules are there - I like the idea of 'mead' - plus a few sample scenarios (I like the 'end of reign' and 'bard's tales' ideas a lot). Although there's no 'potted history' to clutter space, the author's scholarship and knowledge shine through. Would I buy this book? Yes. Will I play the rules? Probably not. Will I pillage it for ideas? Already started. So even if you play WAB or Hail Caesar there is material to use - and, at 12, well worth a purchase. That's the cost of about three pints of frothing mead in the warlord's hall that is The Featherstone Arms - Miniature Wargames.