Game designer, magazine and book editor since 1972.

The Great War card game playtesting update – September 2019

MacGowan & Lombardy’s The Great War was completely funded on Kickstarter and will ship in April 2021


Further refinements have been made since this playtest. Click here to go to a report that links to the latest rules, overview & card samples, examples of play, and quickplay rules.

Based on player feedback at Consimworld Expo 2019 we made some important changes to the World War One card game.

Here is a brief overview of what we changed –

1) We kept a color border on the card back only for the Random Events deck (orange) since these cards never go into a player’s hand.

2) All other deck colors (new Bonus deck yellow, red/blue core decks, and white additional-optional deck) are now on the card fronts. They appear as a broad, wide diagonal stripe across the middle of each card. This enables quick sorting but won’t tell your opponent what you are holding in your hand.

3) We changed most naval cards to BLOCKADE cards (Allied surface ships and German submarines). They still have low battle points. Now they have a bigger impact on the game. If a blockade card is still in play at the end of a turn, it cancels and discards any one enemy Nationality card. This reflects the blockade’s long term logistical effects. Naval cards cannot help capture army or aviation cards – instead they remove them from play. Chris Janiec suggested these revised rules. Chis is a US Navy veteran and designer of PQ17 published by GMT. We will credit him as naval rules developer.

4) A turn winner cannot place high value aces, kings, queens, and jacks back into their hand. Nor can they be voluntarily discarded. This would enable a player to avoid their capture by the enemy. These cards now show their battle point (BP) values as white numbers inside a black circle.

5) We now consider Heavy Machine-Gun (HMG) cards as another type of infantry. Therefore, cards that link to infantry now also link to HMG. This text fix appears on all appropriate cards.

6) All mortars and howitzers now include the word “artillery” so their card type is clear. Field guns are now called field artillery.

7) We have added dates to the new white deck cards. For example, all USA cards now have 1918 on them.

8) The number of cards a player may have in their hand increased from 8 to 9.

9) Dana is working on a game overview with designer’s notes and player tips. These, and the new four levels of victory, will appear on the back of the new version of the Quick Play Outline.

These changes slightly shortened the amount of rules text.

Click here to download a PDF of the latest rules (4.7) and sample cards.

Napoleon magazine – Napoleon Journal

Why two names?

Why Napoleon magazine and Napoleon Journal? It’s more than a case of tomAtotomAHto.

Napoleon: His Life, His Wars, His World magazine evolved from a club-like ’zine called Empires, Eagles and Lions started by Jean Lochet in 1976. In 1994 Dana Lombardy took over as publisher, and two years later the name changed to Napoleon: His Life, His Wars, His World magazine as part of a complete layout overhaul. Following additional upgrades (more pages, perfect binding) the name changed again to Napoleon Journal: International Journal of the French Revolution and Age of Napoleon. Click on the link to read the Backstory on Napoleon Journal.

A sample article – Hougoumont

Own all 17 issues as searchable PDFs on a DVD in a protective sleeve!

Available from our Shop or at our affiliate site NapoleonJournal.com
for just $36 (USA) or $42 (international)

  • Over 1,200 pages of information on Napoleon, his wars, and his world, enhanced by clear, colorful, easy-to-understand graphics
  • Includes index to issues 1–12

To see all 17 issues’ covers plus table of contents and sample pages from each, visit LOMBARDY STUDIOS’s affiliate site NapoleonJournal.com, where you can also read a brief biography, Why Napoleon?

A limited number of printed copies of these back issues are still available. Contact dana.lombardy@gmail.com for the current list and prices.

Grant Rising

Grant Rising“Grant Rising is breathtaking. How I wish I had this book when doing Grant Moves South or working on the Shiloh game for West End! I love the way it emphasizes the command organizations, both in the maps and in the diagrams. This is too often neglected—armies are treated as a big pile of Rebels against a bigger heap of Yankees, not the way it was at all. Your clear color diagrams of the army organizations are a beautiful sight for anyone who’s worked his way through the small print of Battles & Leaders! I also love the way your campaign maps clearly indicate dates as the armies progressed, as this is critical to understanding the action at that level. It’s a beautiful volume and I will treasure it”

—Jonathan Southard, multiple award–winning designer of Grant Moves South, The Battle of Shiloh, and numerous other wargames.


“Grant Rising offers up the best map renderings of the U.S.–Mexican War and early Civil War Western Theater operations ever published. It illustrates the classic marches and battles that we have all studied, but the terrain features, color and attention to detail help to unlock dozens of books on these subjects.”

—Evan C. Jones, editor of Gateway to the Confederacy: New Perspectives on the Chickamauga and Chattanooga Campaigns, 1862–1863.


  • 46 full-color, full-page (11-by-8.5-inch) landscape format maps, 8 pages of full-color orders-of-battle, sidebars, appendices, index.
  • New information not previously published in map form, including Grant’s early life and his pre-Civil War career.
  • Different tints of of red and blue differentiate commands – unique to our maps and essential to understanding command relationships in complex battles – colors tints help separate multiple units of the same side on a single map, making the action easier to understand.
  • 3 orders-of-battle are similarly coded to the same command colors on the maps.
  • Lavish color maps with a shaded relief show the shape of the terrain.
  • Strategic overview maps place regional operations and battles in context.
  • Concise text, supported by quotations from participants and observers.
  • Original artwork by Keith Rocco!

A great reference source and a compelling account of Ulysses S. Grant’s early career!

Available in our Shop in both print and downloadable versions.

MacGowan and Lombardy’s The Great War card game

Win World War One in an Hour

with this 2-player or solo game!

MacGowan and Lombardy's The Great War game

A collaboration by Game Manufacturers (GAMA) Hall of Fame graphic artist Rodger B. MacGowan  and award-winning game designer Dana Lombardy (Streets of Stalingrad, Russia’s Great War 1914). Scroll down to see latest rules, sample cards and examples of play from MacGowan and Lombardy’s The Great War™ card game.

Successfully Kickstarted and now available!!!

The game is available as well as add-ons here. Click HERE to sign up for email updates and offers.


“My first impression of the game was that there was probably going to be too much chance—luck of the draw in the game play—rather than strategy. But there is a lot more to it: when to play your nationality cards or the neutral cards, and bluffing like poker. I like the nuance.”
—playtester Eric Hosler

  • Designed for fast play.
  • Cards illustrated with Rodger MacGowan’s artwork or colorized historical photos. A great way for Rodger’s fans to collect his WW1 art!
  • Core game cards presented in standard decks (deuce through ace, 4 suits) and can be used for any traditional card game.

 

Download the Cards, Rules, etc. below

UPDATE NOVEMBER 2021: The links below go to version 6.0 of the rules and other components.

Game overview

Latest rules

Solitaire Rules

Quick-Play Card

Examples of play

Card Samples – All Decks

War of the Worlds Backstory

War of the Worlds Rules

Decks and Discards Play Mat

Battle Mat

Teacher’s Guide

The Box Cover

 

Watch Dana Lombardy’s interview at Harold on Games.

Listen to Dana in a No Dice No Glory podcast that goes into the background of M&L The Great War as well as discussions of wargame design theory, World War One history, and more.

World War One minigames

These quick-playing minigames can be enjoyed solitaire or 2-player

Just $10 each in our Shop—or get all four for $30!

Zeppelin Raider
Terror from the Skies
Fly against—or as—one of the MONSTERS OF THE AIR. Diceless.
(First published in World War One Illustrated magazine No. 1)

Assassination in Sarajevo
Can the Austrian Royal Couple Survive?
Was war inevitable in 1914? Requires 1 six-sided die.
(First published in World War One Illustrated magazine No. 2)

On to Paris!
Can the Germans Win the Great War in 1914? Requires 13 six-sided dice.
(First published in World War One Illustrated magazine No. 3)

Russia’s Great War: 1914*
Can the Tsar’s armies win in East Prussia? Requires 3 six-sided dice.
(First published in World War One Illustrated magazine No. 4)
Download a free Russia’s Great War 1914 mini-game tutorial here.
*2019 Serious Play Conference award-winner in Educational Board Game category.

World War One Illustrated is a publication of World War One Historical Association. Click the magazine’s title for information on issues 1–9, available through Lombardy Studios Shop. Click here to read the backstory on the creation of World War One Illustrated magazine.

World War One Illustrated magazine

Dana Lombardy published WORLD WAR ONE ILLUSTRATED for the nonprofit World War One Historical Association from 2013 to 2018. (Click here to read the backstory.) WWOI presents:

  • The most recent research
  • Comparative diagrams and analysis
  • Illustrations and photographs throughout
  • Operational, strategic and tactical maps created specially in color for the magazine – in issue #9 the first day of Verdun is a unique composite of separate French and German maps
  • “Amazing War Stories” in every issue, inspired by the Ripley’s Believe or Not newspaper comic

And more about the Great War.

Issues 1–9 were designed and edited by Dana and are available through our Shop page. Issues 1–4 came with a board game and can be ordered with or without the game. (To learn more about the games, go to World War One MiniGames.)

Napoleon’s Last Army update

Napoleon’s Last Army Multi-Volume Series Cancelled. Two New Books in Production and One New Book Shipping in 2022

Lombardy Studios announces that the series of books first mentioned in 2015 under the name Napoleon’s Last Army is officially cancelled. Instead, two exciting new publications centered on Napoleon’s Hundred Days reign are now being developed. Also, a Waterloo art book should arrive at our USA warehouse in early 2022.

Two New Books on Napoleon’s Armies now in production, one new Waterloo art book published in late 2021

1983 edition of Scott Bowden’s ‘Armies at Waterloo’

An elegant one-volume, expanded edition of the critically-acclaimed Armies at Waterloo first published in 1983 by award-winning historian and author Scott Bowden is currently in production for release in 2023. The greatly expanded edition includes additional research developed over the past 37 years, with fresh detailed analysis of the 1815 Waterloo campaign and battle, beautifully illustrated with a number of color images, and newly commissioned color maps.

The second book is a completely new one-volume work titled, Napoleon’s Last Armies: A Detailed Analysis of the Organization and Composition of the 1815 French Imperial Armies. This original work by Scott Bowden will present and examine the archival records of the last Imperial armies fielded during the Hundred Days, including the complete story of the armies that were des Alpes, du Jura, de la Loire, de la Moselle, du Nord, des Pyrénées, du Rhin and du Var.

Stunning new original maps, full-color images, artwork and more will enhance this Herculean effort.

Read Scott’s first blog entry detailing what will be different and exciting about the greatly expanded edition of Armies at Waterloo here.

Lombardy Studios published a new art book by renowned historical artist Keith Rocco called Waterloo: Napoleon’s Last Army. Read more here.

 

 

 

Update on MacGowan and Lombardy’s The Great War™ Card Game

UPDATE DECEMBER 7, 2020

MacGowan & Lombardy’s The Great War was completely funded on Kickstarter and will ship in April 2021


Hello, playtesters.

My apologies for not sending out updates on the card game in 2018. Read the reasons below for the delay, and how that helped improve the game.

November 2017

The following occurred after my last 2017 update to the playtesters.

On 18 November 2017 fellow founder and editor of my Conflict magazine from the 1970s was found dead in his home. He was 71, but this was still unexpected.

Master Sergeant “TP” Schweider, USMCR (Ret.) lived in Twentynine Palms (southern California) where I occasionally visited him. TP’s only family was a few friends like me that he had “adopted” over the years. He was a good friend and mentor.

Over several months I helped rescue TP’s five cats and clear out his house. He is missed. He will be remembered.

January 2018

Professionally, the New Year brought an opportunity, one that rapidly consumed most of my time for the rest of the year. This work proved very valuable to the development of the card game (explained at the end.)

In January of last year, I became a member of the World War I Armistice Centennial Commemoration Committee. The non-profit San Francisco War Memorial and Performing Arts Center Foundation formed the Committee in late 2017. The Foundation administrates the War Memorial Opera House (where the SF ballet performs), Davies Symphony Hall, the Herbst Theater, and War Memorial Veterans Building. The Veterans Building was dedicated in 1932 to honor veterans of the Great War.

The chair of the Committee is Major General J. Michael Myatt, USMC (Ret.) who is a trustee on the board of the Foundation. He is a Vietnam veteran and was commander of the 1st Marine Division that liberated Kuwait during Operation Desert Storm in 1991. It is an honor to serve on this Committee.

My first task was to explain to the Foundation’s board of trustees why the war was so important and still affected Americans today. I gave two brief talks that were well received. I turned one of those PowerPoint presentations into a video for the exhibit.

I became the historical consultant and helped create the exhibits and displays for the War Memorial. My job was to explain America’s role in the Great War and its impact of transforming the United States into a major world power. I immersed myself in researching the history of the period. I wrote and edited the text for the signs and displays. I located appropriate photos and images, and produced a video.

May 2018

Dana Lombardy with BannerBy Memorial Day weekend eight large banners hung in the lobby of the Herbst Theatre. These banners tell the story of America’s initial desire to stay out of a foreign war in 1914. They go on to tell of the growing sympathy for the victims and refugees, and the horror at the unprecedented numbers of casualties. The story finally turns to the United States joining the Allies as a co-belligerent.

There are also banners about women, financing the war, combat and technology, and ending the war (the Armistice). The final banner explains the creation and dedication of the War Memorial buildings to honor “all who served.”

All eight banners can be viewed on the American Legion website: https://alwmcsf.org/ww1/

October 2018

In 2018, General Myatt asked me to present my “Why is World War One Important” talk to a Senior Leaders Seminar during Fleet Week. These men and women included emergency responders, politicians, and conference participants from the Navy, Marines, and Army Corps of Engineers.

Fleet Week anel

Christopher Oldfield, Australian Consul General in San Francisco (on my left), and Rear Admiral Sam Cox, U.S. Navy (Ret.), Director of Naval History and Heritage Command. Standing is the panel host Brigadier General Roderick Macdonald. British Royal Army (Ret.). Macdonald commanded 59 Independent Commando Squadron, Royal Engineers, during the Falklands War.

I then served on a panel about World War One.

In addition to the amount of work outlined above and for the soon-to-open Veterans Gallery exhibit, I helped design a set of eight commemorative cachets. These went on sale in October. They are collectible envelopes featuring the “Turning the Tide” Forever™ postage stamp. The U.S. Postal Service issued the stamp in 2018 to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the 1918 Armistice.

The cachet team included General Myatt, Ed Flowers, a Director of San Francisco Fleet Week and a member of the San Francisco Marines’ Memorial Club, and me. Flowers is a stamp aficionado who designed the Buffalo Soldiers cachet (among others) and worked with General Myatt on the 2005 release of the four Distinguished Marine postage stamps on the 230th birthday of the U.S. Marine Corps.

These eight “Turning the Tide” cachets feature historical Great War illustrations of the U.S. Marine Corps, Army, Navy, Air Service, African Americans, women, and animals. Charles Kendrick and the San Francisco War Memorial buildings are also included. You can see them here:

https://lombardystudios.com/commemorate-remember-world-war-one/

November 2018

The Armistice signed in 1918 marked the end of the war for America. The Eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month became a remembrance day for the United States, France, Britain, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. It evolved into today’s Veterans Day in the U.S.

On November 11, 2018 the exhibit called The Great War / World War One – The American Experience opened. It is located in the Veterans Gallery, at the end of the lobby of the War Memorial Veterans Building. The exhibit includes hundreds of artifacts including uniforms, trench art, weapons and equipment, two videos, an aerial dogfight diorama, and dozens of images with descriptive text and stories.

The United States World War I Centennial Commission chose San Francisco’s War Memorial Veterans Building as one of its 100 Cities / 100 Memorials matching grant. This was awarded to preserve World War I Centennial Memorial monuments.

I assembled a team to videotape and photograph the banners and exhibit displays. I am now working on an augmented video tour that we will eventually post on YouTube. You could then visit the exhibit online even after it closes later in 2019. The banners will remain on permanent display on the second floor.

June 2019

I continue to serve on the renamed Veterans Commemoration Committee. Plans include projects to honor the veterans of the Korean War, World War Two, Vietnam, etc.

Visiting the Banners and Exhibit

The public can view the banners when the War Memorial Veterans Building is open. Hours are from 8 am to 10 pm Monday-Sunday. They are open later if there are building activities. In early July, they will move to the second floor for permanent display outside the offices of the American Legion. The Legion is an an organization formed in 1919 by the veterans of the Great War.

As noted before, you can see the eight banners on the American Legion website: https://alwmcsf.org/ww1/

The Great War / World War One exhibit in the Veterans Gallery is open to the public. Admission is free. You can find their hours at https://alwmcsf.org/gallery/ww1_exhibit2/ .

If you’re visiting the area, I am available to give tours.

How All of this Affected MacGowan and Lombardy’s The Great War Card Game

Based upon your feedback, the game improved to version 3 in 2017. Mark Kaczmarek’s development of the game, plus my past year of research for the Committee, has given the game:

• A greater variety of cards and images.

• Cards representing more nations and a greater number of weapons such as seaplanes and seacoast artillery.

• Random Event cards such as bad weather and bad luck.

• Bonus cards for terrain, improvements to weapons and doctrine, etc.

The extra cards allow for more scenarios (some cards are planned as stretch goals for the Kickstarter launch).

I hope these changes make the game more challenging—but remain a fun “filler” game.

Dana

Robert E. Lee at War: Hope Arises from Despair


Robert E. Lee at War:
Hope Arises from Despair
Robert E. Lee at War Series
by Scott Bowden
Genre: History, Civil War
Legion of Honor Publishing
Published: 2017Hardback
320 + xi pages, 29 color maps plus a large fold out map, five appendices, annotated endnotes, index
 Reviewed by Dana Lombardy


ISBN 978-0-692-86742-6 $200.00
Leeatwar.com

Full disclosure: This reviewer has known Scott Bowden since the 1970s and helped edit two of his Napoleonic books published in 2006 and 2009 by Military History Press.

Robert E. Lee at War: Hope Arises From Despair is a beautifully produced, full-color, large-format 9-by-12-inch art book. It has gold leaf leather binding, bound-in bookmark ribbon, and the page edges in gold foil. The collector’s edition of Lee also includes a gold leaf slipcase. It is the first volume produced by Legion of Honor Publishing.

This is an amazing book. Not only in the excellence of the binding and printing, but also in the well-researched and thoughtfully presented story of Robert E. Lee’s ascension to command in June of 1862 of what would arguably become the most important of the Confederate armies: the Army of Northern Virginia. Bowden used unpublished manuscripts, papers, and special collections as well as official records and memoirs.

Map

Bowden acknowledges in his preface that the study of the American Civil War, and particularly Confederate leaders, is contentious today. However, these works provide important historical information vital to understanding why “The War” lasted so long. Bowden explains that “the careful study and analysis of the facts connected to Robert E. Lee’s military leadership—his mind and method—is the purpose of the Robert E. Lee at War series.”

During the Mexican War 1846-48 Lee’s abilities impressed  Winfield Scott while Lee served under him. In 1861 Scott tried to get Lee to accept field command of the U.S. Army. Lee instead chose to serve his native state of Virginia. If Scott regarded him so highly, why was Lee so under employed for the first 13 months of the war? Although he was officially President Jefferson Davis’s advisor beginning in the spring of 1862, Lee only received a field command when Joseph E. Johnston was wounded during the fighting outside Richmond. The prologue by Bowden is a fascinating explanation that many readers may find surprising.

Part I includes the first nine chapters of the book and cover the Seven Days campaign which saved Richmond from capture by the Federal Army of the Potomac. It was an unprecedented turn around that Bowden’s exceptional storytelling describes using eyewitness quotes. Combined with the in-depth original analysis, this book is not your typical military history.

Portrait of Lee

When Lee took command on June the 1st  he inherited an army that was no better than an “armed mob” seriously lacking in discipline and cohesion. He met with his senior generals on June the 2nd, drastically improving the supplies and morale of the troops with personal inspections. He made repeated personal reconnaissances (as he did in Mexico), devised a counter offensive, and then executed it starting on June the 26th, not even a month after meeting with his division commanders.

Lee then fought five major battles in seven days, seizing the initiative in the campaign and driving the Federals from Richmond. It was a most remarkable accomplishment. Bowden shows how Lee’s methods and maxims were influenced by his study of Napoleon and other great commanders of history. Each of these battles employs multiple color maps and interesting sidebars such as the composition of the opposing artillery forces.

Part II includes the final three chapters of the book. This section is titled “Lee’s Art of War” and is the first to explain the underpinnings of Lee’s military philosophy. It also explains how he executed it in the areas of operational warfare and grand tactics on the battlefield.

The next volume in the series deals with Lee’s campaign and victory at the Battle of Second Manassas (Bull Run) in late August. This occurred just two months after the end of the Seven Days.

When President Lincoln asked Winfield Scott why 100,000 men could not take Richmond, Scott explained “The men who took us into the City of Mexico are the same men who are keeping us out of Richmond.”

Highly recommended.
Dana Lombardy

LombardyStudios.com

The Great War Revealed in San Francisco

By Dana Lombardy. In February I was asked by the World War One Centennial Commemorative Committee to help create 100th anniversary exhibits that explain America’s role in World War One.

In late May 2018, they installed eight 8-foot square banners in the lobby outside the Herbst Theatre and American Legion Veterans Hall. This is in the War Memorial Veterans Building at 401 Van Ness Avenue. It’s across the street from San Francisco City Hall. The display is free to the public. You can view it at http://alwmcsf.org/ww1/. In 2019 the banners were moved to the second floor.

The Banners Have a Story to Tell

The banners tell the story of America’s initial desire to stay out of a foreign war in 1914. Then the growing sympathy for victims and refugees, horror at the unprecedented numbers of casualties. Then finally the United States joining as a co-belligerent in that war.

It was the first war that saw the widespread use of mechanization. Submarines, airships and airplanes, artillery cannon, machine-guns, tanks, and poison gas were all used. The lethality of these weapons drove armies underground. Soldiers lived for years in dugouts and trenches, separated by a devastated “No Man’s Land” of shell holes and barbed wire.

Millions of American women volunteered to work on farms, in factories, and in many other traditional male jobs. These women replaced nearly five million American men who entered  into the U.S. Army and Navy. Women’s service in the war provided key political leverage to get the right to vote. Congress passed the 19th Amendment in 1919, with states’ ratification in 1920.

The initial banner display in 2018 was supported by videos and additional exhibits of artifacts and photographs set up in the Veterans Gallery on the lobby level. There was also a series of seminars. The banner exhibit ran through the end of 2019 to commemorate the centennial of the Versailles Treaty (June) and founding of the American Legion.

Who Did This?

The United States World War I Centennial Commission chose San Francisco’s War Memorial Veterans Building as one of its 100 Cities / 100 Memorials matching grant. This award helps preserve monuments with the designation as a World War I Centennial Memorial.

The Performing Arts Center Foundation authorized the World War One Armistice Centennial Committee that created The Great War display. The Foundation administers the War Memorial Veterans Building complex that houses the American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars, Herbst Theatre, Opera House, and San Francisco Ballet. The Committee chairman is Major General J. Michael Myatt, USMC (Ret.), with co-chair Judge Quentin L. Kopp (Ret.), President of the Korean War Memorial Foundation.

On 11 November 2018, the 100th anniversary of the Armistice (now called Veterans Day in the USA), the second part of The Great War exhibit opened in the Veterans Gallery of the War Memorial Veterans Building. It also is free to the public. Dana is available for tours and is working on preserving the exhibit as an interactive video.