Click on the image below to see a larger version of the scenario sheet.

The original working title for this game system was Ages of War, but since my plan is to make it my entry for the Open Wargame Initiative, I am thinking of calling it Open Warfare instead. Nevertheless, the notion of representing warfare through four distinct technological ages remains.

What you see pictured is some conceptualizations for the counters and an example operational-level scenario sheet. The counters are all generic and come in six colors to represent various historical or hypothetical forces. The counters have a unit type symbol, a size value (i.e., number of combat steps), and a tech level letter (A = ancient, B = gunpowder, C = mechanized, D = high-tech). The actual combat/movement factors for any particular unit type is defined on the scenario sheet for any particular scenario.

As shown in the example, the first section of any scenario sheet (or campaign game sheet) consists of "unit definitions" which assign air, ground, surface, and sub-surface combat/movement factors to each unit type, along with any special abilities (like the number of aircraft steps carryable by each step of a Carrier TF unit). Then the order of battle is given showing how many steps of each unit type is involved at-start or as reinforcements. The rest of the scenario sheet is pretty straightforward.

I am working on mechanics now, both for the campaign-level game and the operational-level game. At present, operational-level scenarios use the silhouette counters, while campaign-level scenarios use NATO-symbol counters. My goal is to organize the rules into "modules", some of which could be flagged as optional, lending themselves to elaboration or complete replacement by players and designers who wish to contribute to it after version 1.0 is released. So, for example, there will be a module on weather generation and effects, but that module could be ripped out and replaced by a much more detailed version by a future contributor. And as time goes by and superior modules come along that really make the game better, those modules will get folded into the "official" rulebook so that gamers don't have to keep track of multiple files and downloads just for the rules.

There is lot more to this than I am showing here. Eventually I will have a section on my website devoted to this at length, and once I am playtesting it, I will post more images and more details of how the Open Warfare system works.

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Comment by John Cooper on April 9, 2008 at 7:18pm
You guys are right on the money! This is an exercise in re-energizing the notions behind AH's Blitzkrieg, SPI's Strategy I, Jedko's Field Marshal, and open scenario-based generic systems like Ancients.
Comment by Chris Fawcett on April 9, 2008 at 3:16pm
Ahh, the eventual remake of the Strategy I experiment. Good for you, John!
Comment by Don Lazov on April 9, 2008 at 8:47am

Comment by Ted Torgerson on April 8, 2008 at 9:05pm
Great job so far.
Comment by Giorgio Clavelli on April 8, 2008 at 7:18pm
Your project seems very interesting. Many years ago, I was thinking to something similar, where players can customize their units (with some limits, so to maintain the need to have the different unit types and or tech available).
What I have had in mind, at that time, was a sort of advanced version of AH Blitzkrieg, I guess.
Please keep me posted on your progresses.

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