TSR Chainmail back in print!

Wargame Vault and all of their affiliates finally have a PDF on sale for $4.99.  This was probably the first Medieval Wargame I ever played.  I remember setting up those Sheriff of Nottingham figures on the living room floor and fightingout battles.  I never had enough cavalry to overcome the archers of Sir Robin.

The game is quite simple in concept.  Each hit causes a kill and the front rank of a formation gets to strike.  The whole formation counts when determining the victor.  I’ve always had a couple of gripes with the game though, minor as they are.  First was the way missile fire is handled and its power.  The number of figures are cross indexed with a die roll on a chart.  There are two possible outcomes separated by just one point.  It made archery kind of deterministic.  If you only had five figures left and the enemy could do 3 to you at a minimum, well good night Irene.  On top of that, archers could often fire twice if they were not contacted by the end of the movement phase.  I guess Gary Gygax liked his “shooty” things.

The other issue is the way combat outcomes were handled.  I don’t mean casualties.  That is pretty straight forward as I mentioned.  I mean the process of determining who won and who lost.  It was a 5 or 6 step process which involved some multiplication.  I don’t think it’s so bad since you rarely dealt with more than about 3 or 4 combats a turn anyway, but it is cumbersome.

It is otherwise a wonderful game and some say it is the game that started the whole DnD craze.  You can get it here.



2 Responses to TSR Chainmail back in print!

  1. Ed Mueller says:

    Oh, the memories! I had a copy of Chainmail back in the day, and I wound up getting another one to replace it (about ten years ago) just for nostalgia sake.

    You are correct about the relationship between Chainmail and D&D. Dungeons and Dragons originally began life as a Chainmail variant.

  2. acarhj says:

    Kind of why I have it. I played a couple of solo games and even revised it (in “Old School” page on this site) to my liking.

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