When I was about 12 years old, I came across a book called "Battles and Battlefields." From the back cover blurb: "The clash of steel, the crack of muskets and the shouts of fighting and dying men are heard again in David Scott Daniell's re-creation of fifteen battles fought on British soil. From Stamford Bridge in 1066 to Culloden in 1746, he gives a blow-by-blow account of each battle and outlines the events leading up to it and what followed."
SOLD! To that earnest, impressionable young man skittishly standing at the corner of Sci-fi and Fantasy sections!
Each chapter contained a beautiful illustration of a key point in the battle, and a military-style drawing of the battlefield with the initial deployment of the opposing forces (you know, those symbolic rectangles to represent unit types and their colors). These alone showed to my mind's eye the tone and disposition of the coming conflict. But the account of the battles was truly the gem of the book. I devoured the pages, fully immersed within each battle. I "saw" the heroic Norseman hold the bridge for his countrymen, I was with fleeing Highlanders when they were being cut down by the Redcoat Cavalry!
Back then, I didn't know about war-games much less role-playing games but that book fired up my imagination! My mind was replaying (role-playing?) the events on my mind, had me making "scenarios" of battles I wanted, thinking of "What Ifs." And, yeah, this book made me love History and Literature so much more. Now, 30+ years later, this book, old and battle-scarred, is still with me. I have re-read it over the years - never failing to entertain and to spark my imagination.
I'd like to celebrate Fudge War Week by starting a war-game series, featuring the "Battles and Battlefields" of Mr. Daniell.
I'll share my Fudge B&B ideas on my next post. See ya later, fellow fudge fans!
--Jonas "fudgebob dicepants" Susara