TinkerFox is a free campaign game about garrison warfare in the early days of the English Civil war. Players command the Royalist or parliamentary forces jockeying for control of a small county. Morale, logistics, orders, friction and tabletop encounters are central to the game. The game’s genius is how it monitors all these factors in a painless and enjoyable fashion, instead of burying you under soulless paperwork.
It uses the also free Very Civile Actions wargame rules to resolve tabletop encounters. Both are produced by the fine fellows at The Perfect Captain, who have to be my favourite wargame designers of all time.
I’ve chosen a rather generic “secure control of the county” scenario, where both sides are attempting to control the region through planting garrisons across the map- leading of course to skirmishes, battles and sieges as they fight over villages, river crossings and so forth.
One of the best things about Tinkerfox is that it uses a randomly generated map, so each game is unique. So I present to you, Kenborough county:
This is the Royalist set up. They have a lovely central position, with their right flank secured at a river while their centre (Trewes Castle) is a fortified position manned by an extremely audacious officer (Colonel Starkey) with an elite cavalry command. Starkey should be able to raid and pillage quite cheerfully from the safety of his walls.
This is the parliamentary set up. I think the Royalists have a slightly better position, but the Parliamentarians have easier access to the most provender (supplies, represented by P on the map card) and can easily outflank the Royalists in the West, while their centre looks a bit weak as well. Their own centre is garrisoned by 3 companies of foot at Hathlom House, which you might not be able to read, because I flipped it so the stream would line up with the rest of the map.
Now to issue orders to both sides, and let the game commence!