“Of War and Men” is a WW2 based, squad-level card game that introduces the individual heart of a soldier into the framework and strategies of war. Build effective fireteams and create or discover the land as you cross the war-torn map and try to outflank, outmaneuver, and outgun the enemy.
As any good leader, you must consider the unique individual strengths and weaknesses of your soldiers to make sure your Mission is a success. In one Mission, you must rescue or capture the Resistance soldier who has recovered secret plans and get them safely back to your camp. In another, you must parachute into the landing zone and capture the bridge in order to win the day.
This 2-4 person game can be played within an hour, or track your soldiers across an entire campaign, awarding medals for courage and valor, while determining the ability of green troops coming in to replace lost heroes. Replay-ability is high since each encounter will vary based on Mission, fireteams, map builds, and the general unpredictability of war.
But these aren't just pieces on a board. You aren’t just sending in soldier #2, but rather, you are sending in Corporal “Pokey” Johnston. He hasn't been able to hit the broadside of a barn on this Mission. However, you've been saving that "Act of Valor" card and you decide to play it with Corporal Johnston. He turns the tide of battle.
These aren't just names on a roster. These aren't just numbers on a map. These are your men. These are your brothers in arms.
After selecting a Mission and setting up the map according to the Mission card, you are ready to choose your division and build your fireteams. Carefully place your soldiers in their marching order - be aware of their strengths and weaknesses as you place them next to each other! Order of play is randomly determined by shuffling your division cards and placing them on the initiative track. At the top of the round, any map effects will activate as well as any specific division effects or soldier traits. Each fireteam will take their turn. At the end of the initiative track, create "Fog of War" by discarding the top card of the deck, then reassess the battlefield and your strategy. A new round begins.
You can play until the Mission objective is accomplished, until the deck (also a handy timer) runs through one, two, three (you choose) cycles, or until you have destroyed your opponent. There are so many options! You can win by accomplishing the Mission, or accumulating the most points at the end of your pre-determined timer (playing through the deck), or by destroying your opponent (sensing a theme here?). Again - so many options for you to choose so that each game can be a unique experience.
Each player has a hand limit of 7 cards - hand management is key in this game! You will only get to draw up to your hand size at the beginning of the round, and yet you will have 1-4 fireteams to manage with your cards - so choose wisely! Each player must choose to execute the Order on the top of the card (you get 2 actions per turn) or use the instant action (Command Decision) on the bottom of the card (unlimited amount of these) - you can’t do both! Terrain cards can be played on open or undiscovered sections of the map and count as an action. Again - be careful - you only get to draw at the beginning of the round and you must use those cards to control every fireteam under your command.
Corporal: ($40) One copy of the game. All unlocked stretch goals.
Sergeant: ($75) Two copies of the game. All unlocked stretch goals.
Captain: ($200) Two copies of the game. All unlocked stretch goals. Immortalize yourself by getting your name in the game as a soldier (*naming rules apply).
- Unique soldier strengths and weaknesses
- Lethality-over-time game mechanics
- Weapon malfunctions, field repairs, and random events
- Grenades, artillery, and satchel charges
- Snipers, stealth, and covering fire systems
- Artillery drift, wind, and weather effects
- Dynamic initiative track
- Innovative line-of-sight system
- Mission-specific orders
- Suppression, combat wounds, and medics
- Assaults and hand-to-hand combat
This game uses a system that utilizes the premise of rolling dice, but places the dice (red d4, green d6, blue d8) on the cards. You do not physically “roll” dice, but rather you flip over cards from the main deck and read the appropriate “dice” color/shape (red/triangle, green/square, blue/diamond respectively) and the number. All number combinations that could be rolled with these three dice are represented on the cards that comprise the playing deck.
This system is introduced to represent lethality-over-time through accuracy and the rate of fire in war. For example, while a soldier is attacking, he is not shooting just one bullet. He is shooting as many rounds as he can, and the “roll” or flip of the cards determine if one of the bullets finds its mark. In some situations, a soldier may fire three rounds, but then his weapon jams. They must take time to unjam the weapon before firing again. The Card-Commanded System, or CCS, forces the player to flip “dice” to represent time passing, problems that can occur, and rate of fire for each weapon.
“Discipline” is the other unique feature of this Card Commanded System. Each designated “soldier” card for the game has what is known as “discipline”. This represents the level of training and the mental stability, or willpower, of the character. It is represented by the same dice of red d4, green d6, or blue d8 as seen on the other cards. The more “discipline” a character has, the lower the dice type will be. The less “discipline” the character has, the more inexperienced the character is, and the higher the dice type will be. After certain ability or scenario rolls, the “discipline” will be subtracted or added from the total.
In this specific game, by utilizing the CCS system, your deck becomes the game timer. Players may follow the specific Mission cards to determine how many “decks” represent the allotted length of the game, or players can decide to play until the Mission is complete. You can declare that the player with the most points (determined by the point totals on killed and routed soldiers) wins after one full playthrough of the deck, or 2 full playthroughs of the deck, etc. You can, of course, also play until one entire division is eliminated, or to any designated endpoint the players choose and agree upon.
Here is a link to a few selected pages from our DRAFT rulebook. These EXCERPTS are part of a much larger comprehensive work. We are continuing graphic layout and updates to the rulebook, and will keep the community posted to its progress. For a more in depth look at how "Of War and Men: WWII" is played, see the "How to Play" videos in the storyline above.
We are a small and mighty, Colorado-based game design company forging great works daily. “Of War and Men: WWII” is our flagship game, but we have big plans and big dreams.
There is no guarantee that our game will make it into retail stores, but in the event it does, you can be pretty darn sure the cost will be higher. So, we encourage you to snag your copy now at this discounted Kickstarter price!
We grew up playing games, with family, with friends, even alone when no one else was around to play - and now we are making that passion part of our everyday lives.
A family of artists and educators, we are putting the various and sundry skills required for these disciplines to good use. We also have a cadre of epic friends and family supporting us along the way. Our daughter has even decided to try her hand at the business. With her “Lunch Lady” game in development, it won’t be long until she herself is a proper game designer!
Games by design . . . family by nature!
BIG thank you to our illustrator, Chris Solis and company (CGC Games) - your work has blown us away and really helped put us over the top!
Special credit to our military advisors:
- Chief Warrant Officer 4 (Retired), Eric Smith
- Master Sergeant E-7, Matt Lohman
Special thanks to our GenCon50 playtesters at the First Exposure Playtest Hall - your feedback and advice has been invaluable.
Gratitude and praise to all our friends and family who have diligently sat through playtesting and numerous sessions of "what do you think about this idea . . ."
*Naming rules: Netherhavyn Game Works, LLC reserves the right to refuse any name submission at the pledge level of $200 for any reason. We will refund your pledge in a timely manner. We will consider all names carefully before accepting or rejecting, and we will match them to the division we think they best fit. The backer can give us suggestions for preferred "traits" on the card (strength, weakness, weapon), and how they prefer their name and nickname to appear, but we reserve the right to make all final decisions based on what will be best for our game and company.
Risks and challenges
The creation and publication of a game is complicated - obviously. There is always the possibility of mistakes, setbacks, and/or unforeseen events (like meteors crashing into your house, for example).
However, we at Netherhavyn Game Works, LLC have done our level best to prepare. Here are some of the steps we have taken to make this a successful campaign:
1. We have done a significant amount of pre-production work so we can fully dedicate ourselves to finalizing a great product for you. This includes illustrations and design work, rule book creating, manufacturing pre-production talks, and printing and cutting thousands of cards by hand to continue play testing, and so much more.
2. We have previewed, viewed, reviewed, and immersed ourselves in numerous other game companies and what they do to make themselves successful - listening to the masters out there and letting them guide us!
3. Immersing ourselves in the gaming culture and community as often as we can (really, this is more fun than work). We have play tested at the First Exposure Playtest hall during GenCon 50, backed numerous Kickstarter campaigns both as a company and personally, as well as making sure we play games as often as we can (a hardship - right!?).
We are dedicated to our gaming community. We will be transparent in our process and involve our community and backers as much as possible. Regular updates about our progress, challenges, and process will be posted throughout the campaign and beyond. Things can, and usually do go wrong, but we are a dedicated, hard-working group of game designers and we will forge through - after updating you, of course.
Above all - thank you for your support, trust, and epic coolness - we value you!
We are a small (but mighty!) company and we are willing to walk before we run! So, with that in mind, we are keeping our shipping limited - for now. We will ship to the following:
- The European Union (EU Friendly Shipping)
- The United Kingdom (EU Friendly Shipping)
- The United States (US Friendly Shipping)
Shipping to areas outside of the United States may result in additional duty and taxes out of our control. To help minimize the chance of this, we are shipping from within North America and Europe. Please research import regulations to learn about these potential costs for your country before placing an order.
In order to keep costs down and reduce the potential for errors, we cannot split orders to ship to multiple delivery locations. We allow a maximum of 1 delivery location per backer, regardless of reward levels or the number of copies ordered.
We are following the “Keep it super simple” rule in order to make sure we can deliver on our promises and do our work well and with integrity - that is very important to us. So, please take time to note that to adjust your pledge, manually add the $ amount and/or reward DURING the project. We don’t use a pledge manager, so all pledges must be made in full by March 31, 2018. After this, we will sell through our website and other distributors and retailers.
Of course, we have mighty big dreams, and expansion is our goal - we appreciate your help getting there!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (32 days)