Monday, November 26, 2012

Bolt Action Rules Review: Part 1 Overview

The cover.

After having some time to read the Bolt Action core rules I figured this would be a good time to share my thoughts and give you an honest review of the rules. Many people look at a new game and are hesitant about investing in a game not knowing what you are getting for your money. In this economy this becomes more important as we want every buck to go to where it counts!


First off I must say the book is well done; with Osprey Publishing helping to print this book deserves a major nod to Warlord for going this route to produce a quality book. First impressions are always important. The book is of course hardback, stitch binding and full color with amazing artwork from Osprey inside along with detailed game examples to help illustrate game rules and examples.

Detail examples of the diagrams and info within.

Pinning rules...a huge part of the game and a post for a later time!

Terrain is important to a game that only plays for 6 turns!

The book opens with the standard introduction, basic supplies and the basic rules as well as unit types, movement and such. Then the book moves into the turn sequence, giving orders then breaking down into the concepts of Movement, Shooting, Weapons and Close Quarters. This moves into explaining the meat and potatoes of the units starting with Headquarters, Unit Special Rules, Artillery, Vehicles and buildings. The end of the book details Playing a Game, Force Selection and Basic Army lists with a timeline at the end for the historical reference. The end of the book closes out with some Appendix stuff discussing history and wargaming as well as playing multiplayer games. The Rules Summary at the end of the book is well done and places what appears to be every in game chart at your disposal.

A peek at army lists in the book.

My only complaint about the book design is there is no INDEX. Yes, there is no index with page reference numbers. A shocker to me as Osprey is a publisher that always does quality work. Was this an oversight? In any case, this is a must for a gamer to have an index to reference rules quickly. Yes, the table of contents is fairly well done, but an index speeds matters up more so.

I feel that also the history timeline is perhaps a waste of pages as we can very easy go to the library, bookstore or the Internet for any historical information we need. Personally, a good resource of “how to paint” WW2 uniforms would have been very useful. Sadly, this would more than likely undermine Osprey Publishing sales of their cool books that could be used as reference. I am still waiting for my Germany book that perhaps details the painting tips there.

I plan to go step by step to key parts of the book to discuss in detail my impressions and I hope give you the reader more information to determine if Bolt Action is your rules set for WWII gaming!

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