- Paperback: 118 pages
- Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (11 Feb. 2014)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1495253384
- ISBN-13: 978-1495253386
- Product Dimensions: 14 x 0.7 x 21.6 cm
- Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (1 customer review)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 973,198 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Little Wars: A Game for boys from twelve years of age to one hundred and fifty and for that more intelligent sort of girls who like boy's games and books Paperback – 11 Feb 2014
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About the Author
H.G. Wells (1866-1946) is rare among science fiction writers-—and virtually unique among wargame designers-—in that he was wildly successful and seen as a genius both during his life and long after his death. He published Little Wars in 1913, following the financial success bestowed upon him by works like The Time Machine. The fact that he wrote this book at all demonstrates a commitment to the concept of wargaming, and his execution of it reveals both his keen sense of humor and his abilities as a game designer. While Wells’ work remains popular to this day, he is sometimes derided for having been a pacifist. By 1913, however, military technology had reached a level of lethality that threatened to make warfare between industrialized nations a zero-sum game bordering on apocalypse, as demonstrated by the Great War that broke out the year following the release of Little Wars. Survival of the species probably motivated the great author as much as pacifism.
Top Customer Reviews
Whilst not "politically correct" in some of it's pronouncements (relating to the opposite sex), it has a tone that the modern reader will find amusing, reminding us of an era long gone.
This book is now used by some "Old School" wargamers to provide the basis for their games, using the figures (or modern copiess in various scales) used by H.G.Wells himself.
Although one can tell the style of writing is "old fashioned", it is easy to read and quite informative in many ways. It also shows the attitude towards the world and the confidence felt by those living during the British Empire.
The book can be read in many ways: as a social look at the era, as a background to toys of the era, as a background to the development of the modern wargame, or simply as a set of rules to be used to play with toy soldiers.
I bought the book as I'm interested in "playing with toy soldiers" and wanted some ideas before buying my soldiers and painting them.
The rules - and the background to how they were developed - are very interesting, and there is the write up of an actual battle - the sort of thing that all wargamers love.
A fascinating book and an enjoyable read, enhanced by the 100th annivrsary of the book. The book didn't receive the attention it deserved at the time as WW1 broke out in 1914, so playing at war was not quite the correct thing. However, it is now time to give H.G.W the credit he deserves and I would heartily recommend the book to anyone who has the slightest interest in toy soldier.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program)
I liked it, I play war games (like this) and the old world view is just fun. I mean, I had one of those little spring worked cannons as a kid. Had I had these rules (this is both a book with story and a game with rules you can play) back then, I'd probably still have it and still be playing with these rules.
This is after all a book from another time on a subject not for the electronic generation. It's sunshine, cold tea (or hot tea on a snow swept day) and simpler past times. Like almost anything Victorian, you need to like things Victorian / British / or at least off the beaten trail.
Hay, in any case... it's free, it's on your Kindle, just enjoy it!
That being said, I have heard about this book ever since I was introduced to wargaming almost 35 years ago and I was always curious what it was like. Coming across it accidentally while in the kindle store was one of those epiphanous moments. I couldn't download it fast enough and once I started reading it I couldn't put it down. It is a rare glimpse into the creative process of simulation design, he starts out with a series of "back to the drawing board" games and then goes through the step by step developement of the game's design. I wish I could see the original illustrations, but ultimately they are superfluous to the key element of interest to me; the intellectual history of wargame design.
Would I like to play this game? Not really, wargame design has evolved way beyond this level, but it is utterly fascinating to read about.