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Bonaparte is a strategic game utilizing units of army corp size. It is mainly about a conflict between France and England during 7 years. The 11 other nations are allies who can change from one to the other camp. The game also includes logistic management aspects: the armies have to use food from the terrains they occupy. This prevents having many armies in a small not fertile country. The naval war is also included, with harbour and commercial lines control. Each year (every 4 turns), part of the eliminated or reduced armies may be reconstructed.
The illustration represents Napoleon on a white Arab horse.
Napoleon's horses are still a subject of historical discussions, showing the importance of cavalry at that time. For instance, take a look to the French site www.histoire-empire.org or read the book Marengo: The Myth of Napoleon's Horse. One stuffed Napoleon's horse is visible in the museum of the Invalides in Paris.
The author of the illustration is Giampiero Casertano. As a coincidence, he also collaborated to an Italian Magazine called ... Napoleone ...
Opening of the box
The box includes the rules, the map, 2 dice, the counters, 1 combat and politic table, several logistic sheets that includes the calendar and meteorological tables.
The map represents the Europe. On the see are indicated the English commercial lines and a frontier for the Spanish fleet. The map is in four parts. this is not a puzzle like many other International Team games.
All the counters are not used simultaneously during the game. For instance for the French counters: at the beginning of the game, the 4 fleet, Napoleon and 19 standard veterans counters (V 5 15) are used. A "R" counter (reinforced) is for instance an army reconstructed from a veteran's counter that was reduced after a defeat. A "C" counter (conscript) is a new recruit. the symbol near the letter indicates a specialization in cavalry or artillery, meaning an enhanced counter. The "d" commands are specialized in defence, the "a" one are specialized in attack. the logistic centres are the counters with 2 dots and a "6". The fleet have only a combat factor.
The games includes 2 white counters with a star used as markers on the political table (on the map, in Africa), and 4 double sided F/GB for the initiative in each of the 4 map zones. The arrow and stop white counters are used during tactical phase combat.
An article in Jeux et Stratégie n°16 (sept 1982)
The rulebook includes 63 pages in four languages (Italian, English, German, French).
The game is made of 28 turns (meaning 7 years - 1 turn = 1 season). Each turn is made of 5 phases:
- weather conditions: the weather conditions have an influence on the budget available to reconstruct armies, logistic calculation and strategic movements.
- strategic phase: armies movement on a long distance and logistic calculation. When a counter wish to cross an enemy unit, the enemy decides if he let it cross or if it has to stop. The logistic is an important aspect of the game. It is based on the concept that a single army in a standard terrain do not need external supplying. Up to 5 counters in the same hexagon or an unfertile terrain requires supplying points and a logistic line with a length of less than 6 hexagon to the supplying centre.
- tactical phase: short distance movements, combats and political consequence calculation
- naval phase: movements and combats
- political phase: the minor countries can be military won (after a partial destruction of their army) or following political factor calculation: some French allies may rebel when Napoleon loses some points.
At the end of each year (every 4 turns), the reduced or destroyed armies may be reconstructed regarding to the available budget and some national limits.
Some price (2004-2006):
game for 2/4 people 15 years of age or over
Duration of the game: 6-8 hours
Duration of a round in scale: 3 months and 1 day
Width of a hexagon in scale: 60 km
Difficulty: 6 (very hard)
Authors: International Team
Bonaparte on Tric-Trac
Bonaparte on http://www.vlaams-spellenarchief.be/
Bonaparte on vzw Vlaams Spellenarchief
And for the fan of Napoleon strategic games, the game reference is "Empires in Arms": with several web sites including http://eia.xnetz.com/ and www.angelfire.com/nj/eglamkowski/eia.html with for instance solitaire rules.
A book ?
Of course "War and Peace" by Leo Tolstoy
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