Spotlight on Games > War Games > Summaries
Roman Civil War
published in Strategy & Tactics No. 157
Quick Summary to the advanced rules

Thu Dec 17 13:33:38 PST 1998

Caesar: red; Senate: purple; Clients: tan

Disciplines: I: Imperator V: Veteran R: Recruit M: Mob B: Barbarian

Leader Rating: shows no. of stratagems the leader can play per turn or battle

Guard Rating: (*) shows assassination protection

Triumphant Victory: 1. control Rome and 2. at least 25 other cities and 3. achieve your Political Requirement and 4. have a Supreme Leader and

Conquering Victory: above and 5. at least two Off-Map Regions (OMR)

Optimus Victory: above and 6. own five friendly colonies (if all conditions for O.V. satisfied, game ends instantly)

Caesar's Political Requirement: control at least 4 Res Publica markers

Senate's Political Requirement: control at least 2 Res Publica markers Caesar does not control more than 1 stalemate means both players lose

Game ends immediately without winner if fraticide level exceeds 100 points. Every strength 5 heavy-armed Inf killed in battle contributes 5 to the level.

Sequence of Play:
each year has 6 campaign turns and 2 winter turns:
Historical Events Table -- single roll

  1. Draw stratagem markers:
    1. equal to leader rating of Supreme Leader
    2. one if in control of Rome
    3. one if in control of at least 5 of Alexandria, Rhodus, Ephesus, Pergamum, Thessalonika, Salonae, Syracusa, Neapolis, Utica
    4. one if in control of the Syria OMR
  2. Play political stratagems for Res Publica tables
  3. Play political stratagems for Recruiting
  4. Movement
  5. Combat
  6. Supply (attrition checks and pillage)
Senate (same)

can substitute their Discipline for that of 1 unit Before making the Discipline Check die roll

Each leader can play a number of stratagems in a player-turn equal to their leader rating (track on paper). Counter stratagems played during enemy turn are thus a separate count. Return expended markers to the holding area.

Starting supreme leaders are Caesar and Pompeius. Losing the Supreme Leader also loses all stratagem markers to the expended box plus the Dictator and Imperator markers. After this the player names a new Supreme leader who must play a Political Stratagem to claim the title of "heir".

chosen deliberately, not at random

countermix limited

cannot play a Tribute stratagem on units in an All-Sea hex. if Tribute is used on fleets, the units aboard are placed on-shore.

stratagems are played to affect the units in the leader's proximity

no limit except only 1 Civis in a city hex

Each fleet holds 10 Strength in land units. Impeditus counts as 5.

May disembark unlimited SP in a port or up to 20 per turn in a Coast hex.

units are upside down and not inspectable unless:

a friendly unit in the same hex or region OR

opponent wishes to reveal

Advanced Game: can also use an Agent Stratagem

eligible units get re-flipped at the start of each friendly turn

place a piece of paper over your leader holding boxes

recruit boxes also face down

client forces box face up

may pick up and drop off units freely as long as they don't move more than once per turn.

MA equals slowest unit in the force, but it may be dropped off to increase MA. MA never increased by pickups.

Movement procedure: 1. pick a force 2. designate type of move: Road, Cross Country, River, Naval 3. Roll on march table

Road - all movement must be on roads & trade routes

River - always up to 10 river or lake hexes and starting from a friendly city or with at least one Impeditus unit which stays in the force for the whole move

Naval - Fleets can only transport units already in the same port or Coast hex at start. May not drop off land units. At the end of movement, land units can be considered disembarked if in a Coast or port hex. May only use all-Sea or Coast hexes and must cross at All-Sea, Coast or Straits hexsides. Fleets can stay at sea indefinitely.

Cross Country - the default case. May not enter All-Sea, must stop in Mountain, Forest, Swamp or River, unless with an Impeditus. May cross Straits and immediately stop on other side if beginning turn next to it and have an Impeditus (Hellespont or Bosporus, not Massena).

Units stop if entering enemy hex except fleets not stopped by all land forces. May also continue if succeed in turning enemy to its side via Tribute.

There are 2 forms of combat, Basic and Advanced. A suggested house rule is that Advanced Combat be used whenever the Supreme Leader is involved and Basic Combat be used elsewhere.

Basic Combat:

occurs in the same hex and is voluntary

no units can be held back except that Civis may not attack

phasing player is attacker and is first to roll on CRT after adding up all his attacking factors; after taking losses, defender rolls. after these two rolls, battle over.

fleets attack and defend like armies in a land battle on a Coast hex

leaders ignore discipline checks

zero-strength units are destroyed when all other units die in battle

in City, Forest, Mountain, Swamp or River, defender reduces the loss number by 5. C is unaffected

Naval combat is just like land combat. All units aboard save Elephants are added in. Land units undergo any required Discipline Checks as well as the fleets. Lost transports lose the units aboard also.

Advanced Combat:

Play stratagems to resolve Tactical Superiority=who is Attacker -allocate secretly and reveal; high count wins -ties go to the phasing player

There are 3 Rounds of Combat: Attacker picks a Tactic: -Phalanx: always usable -Assault: heavy armed troops only, not in River -Maneuver: not in Swamp, Mountains, or Forest (Swamp/Mountains reduce losses -5) -Skirmish: not in Forest Then rolls on Strategic CRT and applies results.

Defender - same

Each side can only play over the entire combat a number of Tactics other than Phalanx equal to the rating of one leader.

Fleets are considered heavy armed infantry with missile capability; full strength for Phalanx, half otherwise. Transported units use full strength except Elephants.

Heavy-Armed Troops can ignore a loss result if the points to be lost are less than their strength.

Disrupted units cannot add their strength points for the rest of the combat.

Disrupted units are destroyed if disrupted again.

If a Fleet is disrupted, its transported units are also.

Victory occurs if the enemy loses 2X as many SP and the loss is 25% of the enemy total prior to battle (drop fractions), OR all the enemy are disrupted and all friendly are not.

If each achieve one of these conditions, it is a draw.

If there is a Loss, the loser retreats to an adjacent hex, which may contain enemy.

A Major Victory occurs if the loser lost at least 20 SP. Minor victory = 5-19 Skirmish = 0-4

Major Victory gives the winner 3 stratagems from the Available box; Minor Victory gives one. The loser loses 3 and 1 accordingly.

Major Victory also allows winner to promote 3 legions with strength of 5. Minor Victory allows 1. R -> V -> I


There are 3 types: Blockade, Storm and Formal (full tuxedo armor required)

Blockade: no attack, but see Supply

Storm: just like normal battle, but besieger automatically has tactical superiority, Maneuver not allowed, defender treats numerical combat results as zero and defenders never retreat

Formal: requires an Impeditus, then roll on the Formal Siege table

a breach lasts only 1 turn (see table)

if breach fails, may still try a Storm. otherwise, considered Blockade

The Besieged are not required to attack out, but if they do, a minor or major victory permits units to move outside the city. Skirmish result prohibits this however.

Attacks by Relief forces are entirely separate. If victorious however, they may enter the city. A Skirmish result prohibits this.

Revolt Combat:

when a Civis unit changes sides due to play of a stratagem

civis immediately attacks everything else in the city

civis gets automatic tactical superiority

only Phalanx and Assault chits available; civis needs friendly leader to play Assault

Owned combat units in a hex must check for supply unless they are in an unpillaged coastal hex with at least 1 friendly and no enemy fleets or if they are in a river hex and within 10 friendly river hexes of a friendly-garrisoned city not pillaged or under attack.

A hex which has any desert is desert. A hex which has any river is river.

Only units inside a city use the Friendly City line

During Winter, units outside cities use the Winter line regardless of terrain.

Half the units (rounded up) are lost if attrition occurs. If eliminating fleets, transported units count.

Discipline Checks
one die roll per Force applying the same result to each unit

Client Codes: E = Egypt; AS = Asia; N = Numidia; P = Pontus; T = Thracia; A = Armenia

Cities are either controlled by a player, by a client or uncontrolled (no units in the city)

Control requires either a Civis or a friendly counter under an IN CITY marker

Civis are not invertible and are not countermix limited

Units in a city are divided into 2 stacks: those who are IN CITY and cannot leave and the RELIEF FORCE who can leave, but who cannot enter

Basic Game:

Reinforcements are pre-programmed

Killed units are placed in the Recruits Box, except leaders.

Each turn, player can recruit one of the following:

1 leader OR 1 heavy armed Inf OR 1 fleet OR 1 light-armed Cav + 1 light-armed Inf OR 2 Civis (must control the city to do this)

Unit recruited must be the one with the lowest Discipline.

Whoever controls Rome also gets a V or R 5-point legion there and the V units can be taken ahead of the R.

Civis can only go in a City where there is no Civis.

Land units can go to any friendly-controlled city or OMR

Fleet can go to any friendly-controlled port or OMR

enemy presence does not inhibit replacements

Advanced Game:

Reinforcements are pre-programmed

Killed units are placed in the Recruits Box, except that clients go to the Available Clients box

Killed leaders are not placed in the recruits box except for legates.

Imperator-class legions go to the special promotions box.

Each turn, each leader which can play a stratagem can expend one and can recruit one unit of any kind with these restrictions:

No Imperator legions (only available by promotion)

Veterans only in Italian cities or friendly-controlled colonies

Horse archers only in cities in Asia, Cyrenica, Africa, Numidia or Syria OMR

Fleets in any coastal city

Elephants only in Numidia, Africa or Cyrenica

Guards in same city as an Imperator legion and the legion is removed to the promotions box

Octavian not available before April 44

Clients have to be recruited by Client leaders using a stratagem and this must be done in a city containing his nationality code.

Civis are recruited in a friendly, garrisoned city. (Civis can only go in a City where there is no Civis? or is this basic game only?)

No recruiting in pillaged cities


Recruits can be promoted to veteran if they & their leader are not in combat for the turn, they play a stratagem and make a discipline check (use leader's discipline class). Put the R unit back in the Recruits box.

Off-Map Regions (OMR)
each OMR borders a map edge: Gallia: North; Hispania: West; Syria: East

enter a region by having the unit on the map edge at start of turn; all March Table results except Scatter apply

exit a region by rolling on the March Table and getting anything but a No March result; expend half MA (drop fractions) to enter

moving from Gallia to Hispania and vice-versa is legal; anything but Scatter applies

OMRs count as ports

Combat is as normal in OMRs

a player controls an OMR if he has 3X strength points there or 5+ if no enemy there


controlled clients treated just like owned units

any independent client attacked by one side joins the other


clients do not get replacements

Advanced/Tribute against Client leader

friendly leader plays a stratagem while in the same hex as the client and rolls on the Tribute portion of the Discipline Check Results Desert:
if target is a unit, eliminate
if target is a leader, treat as Defection

if target is a unit, joins you if a leader, all units join you (possible revolt combats)

no effect

At the end of the Supply segment by the side finishing the segment

pillage hexes which have units, if city, must be controlled

pillage prevents recruitment there

forces use of the Pillage line on the Supply Table

Whenever a city is pillaged, both sides select a stratagem

hex returns to normal at end of the Winter II turn

Camps (Palisades)
construct by having one legion do nothing the entire turn

can go either in a hex or a region

only 1 friendly camp allowed in a hex or region, thus 2 total

no camps inside cities

attacking forces which lose remain in camp rather than retreating

if defender is in a camp, -no Maneuver by either side -gives +5 if defender uses Phalanx or Skirmish -all numerical combat results vs. defender are zero -if loses, does not retreat

camp is destroyed if -entire owning force eliminated -attcker uses Impeditus on Siege Table and gets a B(reach) (S loses one attacker, N is no effect) -owner removes it (not during combat phase) -owning force leaves the hex

procedure: put a V or I legion on a colonization site or OMR make sure there is no Civis there play a stratagem from a leader stacked with the legion replace legion with a Civis put V legion to Recruit box or I legion to Promotions

no limit to OMR colonies

treat colonization sites as a city, even if destroyed

OMR sites are removed if destroyed

may recruit one V legion from a colony during movement: leader must be at the site and play a stratagem [does not affect the colony]

Res Publica
during this segment, player picks a table to consult: Optimates, Populares or Exercitus

then play a stratagem and roll 2 dice

can keep playing and rolling if you wish

Table Prerequisites: Optimates or Populares: leader in Rome who can play a stratagem, or holding a senator and leader who can play one Exercitus: supreme leader with a legion and able to play one

Res Publica markers not lost after use. Only lost via -event -death of the supreme leader (lose imperator and dictator)