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Mass Combat – Ep89

All I know is that I wanna be the guy with the frickin triceratops!
All I know is that I wanna be the guy with the frickin triceratops!

Many moons ago, roleplaying games were begotten from strategy based miniature battles. With this background in war games, and the propensity of massive battles in many of the tropes of fantasy and sci-fi,   it is not surprising when you look at a lot of older RPGs and see systems for massive battles.


Then a funny thing happened, games started going away from the complicated strategy based mass combat systems and toward abstract rules for battles.


We discuss our perspective on conducting mass combat in your RPGs.


If you have some input on this, leave a comment here, via email or on our Facebook page.


Cast – Eric, Mike, Dan, Mark, Jayson, Shannon, Greg and Shawn


Intro: Eric

Outro: Dan

Listen on Stitcher:

Listen on Spreaker:



Shows Featured in the Outro:

Monkey in the Cage

Carpe GM Gamecast

Happy Jacks RPG Podcast



Items Mentioned:

Lord of the Rings, Braveheart, Excalibur, World of Warcraft, Warhammer Online, Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay, Warhammer 40K, Iron Kingdoms, Settlers of Catan, Legend of the Five Rings, Dungeons & Dragons, Vampire: Dark Ages, Blood Bowl, Battle System, Birthright, Magic the Gathering, Song of Ice and Fire, Savage Worlds, Traveller, Twilight 2000, Shadowrun, Only War, Enemy at the Gates, Star Wars, Exalted, Wheel of Time, Burning Empires, GURPS Mass Combat


  1. Robert Sullivan
    Robert Sullivan December 29, 2012

    A good episode – mass combat is something I’ve been interested in, but never had the chance to use in a game.

  2. Todd
    Todd January 3, 2013

    I’ve always tried to come up with a series of objectives for the PCs to accomplish and how well they do (or don’t) accomplish those objectives during the battle determines the outcome of the overall battle.

    Using the Battle of Helm’s Deep from The Two Towers as an example, how many orcs Aragorn and Gimli take out vs. the HPs they lose doing it while defending the gate affects how the overall battle goes.

  3. Brian
    Brian January 5, 2013

    “…to come back here and tell the PC Gamers that they may take our dice, but they’ll never take, OUR GAMING!!!”

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