Home Forums Renaissance Samurai rules: Ones I have, and ones you can think of?

This topic contains 9 replies, has 6 voices, and was last updated by  Nathaniel Weber 7 hours, 32 minutes ago.

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  • #121804

    Nathaniel Weber
    Participant

    Hello all, I am embarking, for the first time, on a wargaming project that makes me a bit nervous: 28mm Sengoku Jidai-era Japan, with samurai, ashigaru, ichiban yari and teppo and all that. I am having a wonderful time reading about the period and recently received a nice heavy box of troops from Perry Miniatures (damn fine minis, and relatively cheap all things considered).  I find the style of warfare in the time period fascinating, with its head-on clash between modernity (massed arquebus fire, fortifications, ashigaru levies, advanced logistics) and tradition (individual samurai combat, cavalry charges), cool uniforms and sieges, and the head taking–good googily moogily, the head taking!

    Now I am massing together rules sets to determine what I want to play. I would like mass combat (or at least large skirmishes) rather than small scale, man-to-man fighting (though I plan to base my stuff to accommodate that kind of gaming).  Here are the rules I have bought or ordered so far—do you have others you like? What makes them good (historically realistic, fun, or whatever makes it “good” to you)? I am also trying to determine what rules sets I have missed.

    Killer Katanas II: Mass combat, lots of minis; chart intensive but detailed and covers everything, and outstanding scenario/army information.

    Samurai Knight Fever: Looks to be a quick play, army-level game. Benefitted from being free, but looks fun. I also appreciate the pun.

    Ronin: Osprey’s small scale skirmish game. THe combat rules look kinda clunky but I like that it seems to actually try and model a sword fight, rather than just roll a dice and see who scores higher.

    Peter Pig’s Battles in the Age of War (or something like that): Another mass combat game.

    GMT’s Samurai: A boardgame, but I ordered it for 1) more scenario information and 2) to see another approach to how to model Sengoku-era combat.

    Nordic Weasel’s Five Leagues from the Borderland: Gonna try this for skirmishes, too.

    Dragon/Lion Rampant: I have these and they are sufficiently generic that they could probably be employed for mass skirmishes.

    Bonus points if the rules you know of don’t use that ridiculous “Asian” font.

    #121808
    Rhoderic
    Rhoderic
    Participant

    I assume Kings of War Historical must qualify, as it has a very pretty feudal Japanese scene on the cover. North Star currently has it on half price: LINK. Other vendors seem to have it listed as out of stock, so maybe it’s gone OOP or is about to be replaced with a new edition (seeing as the “main” Kings of War game is just transitioning into a swanky-looking third edition).

    Also, Field of Glory with the Empires of the Dragon supplement. A quick search gives me the impression that all of Field of Glory has gone OOP by now, but I’ve not studied the matter more closely.

    And as we’re talking OOP WAB-style rulesets at this point anyway, the original WAB of course had a rather rudimentary samurai army list.

    #121813
    Rhoderic
    Rhoderic
    Participant

    Forgot to say, I can’t really weigh in with an opinion on either KoW Historical or FoG. As for WAB, it is (was) what it is (was).

    #121820

    Nathaniel Weber
    Participant

    Rhoderic, thanks! I just placed an order for Kings of War Historicals. Good price.

    #121826

    Nathaniel Weber
    Participant

    More free sets online!  These free rules for samurai

    build off of the old Ral Partha medieval rules.

     

    #121854
    Derek H
    Derek H
    Participant

    We’re having a lot of fun with Test of Honour at my club.  Samurai skirmish.

    #121864
    Mike Headden
    Mike Headden
    Participant

    I’m using Ronin and really like the rules but combat is certainly slower than “roll a D6, low roll is dead” but, IMHO, more interesting. The rest of the rules flow very well.

    I got some 2nd hand Ninja All Stars chibi  figures intending to use their rules but found them too random to be usable and went for Ronin instead.

    So I have peasant ninja, sohei ninja, etc 🙂

    Sometime I’ll get around to painting them!

    Chibi Ninja

     

    Growing old is mandatory, growing up is entirely optional!

    #121869
    Darkest Star Games
    Darkest Star Games
    Participant

    I’ve played some skirmish rules called “Bushi No Yume” by Surf Shack Productions and had a good time.  Has different detail levels, and can even go fantasy style.  Options to make it cinematic or realistic.  Getting ahold of a copy can be tough though.

    "I saw this in a cartoon once, but I'm pretty sure I can do it..."

    #121955
    Usagitsuki
    Usagitsuki
    Participant

    Bushi no yume is available as a free download here:

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/lfzqxe5qykfq3vw/Bushi%20no%20Yume%20web.pdf?dl=0

    "It takes a brave man not to be a hero in the Red Army" - Josef Stalin (attrib.)

    #121817

    Nathaniel Weber
    Participant

    I assume Kings of War Historical must qualify, as it has a very pretty feudal Japanese scene on the cover. North Star currently has it on half price: LINK. Other vendors seem to have it listed as out of stock, so maybe it’s gone OOP or is about to be replaced with a new edition (seeing as the “main” Kings of War game is just transitioning into a swanky-looking third edition). Also, Field of Glory with the Empires of the Dragon supplement. A quick search gives me the impression that all of Field of Glory has gone OOP by now, but I’ve not studied the matter more closely. And as we’re talking OOP WAB-style rulesets at this point anyway, the original WAB of course had a rather rudimentary samurai army list.

    I was not a fan of Field of Glory, but had forgotten about Kings of War Historicals. Thanks for the link, I ordered a copy. Now you can go collect your commission, for you are clearly a North Star agent!

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