Wargame Thoughts and Commentary

Zouave has been three years in development!

How it all began and goals for the design

Zouave was begun at the urging of my friend of nearly 50 years Ed Meyers. After my 5 year sabbatical from gaming he encouraged me to try creating a new system for table top wargames.

I had not gamed much for several years, but soon he got me started again. The creation of Zouave has allowed me to restablish old relationships with Terry Shockey, John Mumby and Greg Cornell, as well as to meet new gamers such as Tony Fryer and Chris Caudill. I have also used the suggestions of experienced wargamers Jim Getz and Pat McGuire. In Pat’s case his professional editing skills have been invaluable. It’s been great fun working with all of these guys and, In that sense, the rules have already been a success.

I determined I wanted to do several new things with the Repique System. I wanted to go to a larger ground scale, and reach above the Divisional level to Corps and Army level command; I wanted to explore the wonders of 10mm, but not preclude other scales being used, and I wanted to better use a few key concepts of Piquet in original ways that tackled the command issues in a more complete fashion. In addition, I wanted to use common gaming tools and not create the need for special cards.

Most of all I wanted to swim upstream against the trend to “Convention-nize” wargames and make them so simple that all subtlety, all substance, and cleverness of play was subsumed in trying for some lowest common denominator understanding and very basic mechanics. I guess I feel that gamers, or at least some gamers, are capable of more demanding play, and that the “Big” game with a gentle ascending slope of a learning curve was about due for a renaissance.

Is Zouave a convention game? No! Is Zouave a difficult game to learn? No! It is fun? Yes!

(More to come)