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War Galley

PUBLISHED 1999, 2006
DESIGNERS Mark Herman and Richard Berg
MAP ART Mark Simonitch
COUNTER ART Rodger B. MacGowan & Mike Lemick
PRODUCERS Gene Billingsley, Tony Curtis, Andy Lewis, Rodger MacGowan, Mark Simonitch
Price: $65.00




War Galley is the seventh volume in the multi-award winning Great Battles of History (GBoH) series, but the first to venture entirely into the waters of the Mediterranean Sea. It is also the first historical boardgame published, in two decades, to address galley warfare. As such, GMT's War Galley is almost a complete history fo this era of war at sea.

What is best about War Galley is how easy it is to play-- the rules are about half the length of the usual GBoH game-- and that means that most battles can be complete in several hours, at the most. The battles themselves, cover all aspects of galley tactics, from the line against line of big ships at Salamis (Cyprus), to the Chase, Turn and Fight of Chios, to the Line Astern vs. Line Abreast at Side, to probably the most unusual of all ancient battles, the Roman arrowhead against the Carthaginian Lines Astern at Drepanum in 249 B.C.

War Galley wars and battles covered by the scenarios are:

  • Ionian Revolt- Lade, 494 BC
  • Peloponnesian War- Arginusae, 406 BC
  • The Silician Wars- Catana, 397 BC
  • The First Successor War- Salamis, 306 BC (Cyprus)
  • The First Punic War
    • Ecnomus, 256 BC
    • Drepanum, 249 BC
    • Aegatian Islands, 242 BC
  • The Macedonian Wars- Chios, 201 BC
  • The War with Antiochus
    • Side, 190 BC
    • Myonessus, 190 BC
  • The Civil War
    • Tauris, 47 BC
    • Naulochus, 36 BC
    • Actium, 31 BC



Game Components

Counters 560 colored 1-inch, double-sized, Galley counters; and 560 color 1/2-inch counters representing Transport ships, Leaders, and Information Markers.
MAPS Two full-color mapsheets; one devoid of land, the other depicting land and sea.


Game Features

  • Fourteen different Galley types from Biremes up to the giant Dekares.
  • Thirteen naval battles, virtually all of the major naval engagements of the era.
  • All the great admirals, from Demetrius and Ptolemy, Adherbal to Agrippa-- even Hannibal and Cleopatra!
  • Most scenarios playable in several hours.
  • A maneuver-oriented play sequence, with galleys rated for Crew, Manpower, Speed and Ram capability.
  • Special Rules for tactics such as Diekplus and Anastrophe, plus weapons such as Flame missiles, Corvus, and Harpax.
TIME SCALE 5-to-10 minutes per turn
UNIT SCALE 1-to-8 ships per counter



Customer Reviews
# of Ratings: 9
1. on 11/16/2008, said:
One of the best games in the GBOH series. The rules are simple but the tactics availability makes this a real test of skill. "moved" counters may well have made it easier, but you could just use any other .5" square counters from another game. There is also none of Berg's typical anti-Rome bias.
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2. on 11/8/2008, said:
very funny... maybe some form of "moved" counters to help control the situation about "gone" squadrons on large scenarios would have helped...
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3. on 8/12/2008, said:
Simply the best game available for antique naval warfare. Older games are, imo, awkward and don't provide as much fun as this one.
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