The Blue-Light Manual, 2nd Edition

Wargame Rules for the American Civil War, by Edward Pauly

The Blue-Light Manual, Wargame Rules for the American Civil War, by Edward Pauly.

The American Civil War was the division commander’s fight. Often a single division made the difference between victory and defeat; sometimes for a battle, sometimes for the campaign, and, possibly, for the war. D.H. Hill’s Confederate Division held Sumner’s Corps at Bloody Lane and saved Antietam for Lee. Sheridan’s Union Division held Polk’s Corps out of Rosecrans’ rear at Murfreesboro. Had Bowen’s Division of the rebs stopped McClernand’s Corps at Port Gibson, the Vicksburg Campaign might have ended with Grant surrendering. If Hood’s Division hat taken Little Round Top from the Union III Corps, the battle of Gettysburg – And the war – might have ended differently.

The Game

Johnny Reb puts YOU in command of a division or corps. If you’ve never played miniature wargames before, then you’re perfect for the role of a Civil War general! Most of the officers in America’s bloodiest conflict were civilians suddenly thrust into the military, learning about warfare on the job! All the elements of combat are accounted for in the rules: weapons, morale, tactics, and terrain. YOU provide the element of command. The decisions of leadership are yours, but, as in all battles, luck will play a part. Can you, like the great leaders of the War Between the States, keep your head when your plans awry and disaster threatens? If you appreciate a game that’s authentic, exciting and challenging, you’ll want to play Johnny Reb.


  • The rules can be used with 10mm, 15mm, 20mm, and 25mm miniature figures.
  • The basic unit is a regiment of 15 to 30 figures, divided equally between five bases.
  • One player can command a brigade of 3 to 4 regiments, a division of 9 to 12 regiments, or a corps of 18 to 25 regiments.
  • Every phase of the action is affected by morale.
  • Games can take from 30 minutes to 8 hours to complete, depending on the scenario and number of units used.
  • This is a moderately complex game, but 13-year-olds can be shown how to play.
  • Two or more people can play – Johnny Reb is ideal for team games.
  • Games can be played on a card table or up to a huge six-by-eight-foot table, depending on the scenario and number of units used.

What’s Inside

Rules Book. The game rules are written in simple language, with dozens of illustrations and examples of play, and indexed for easy reference.

Combat Tables. Each side has a card containing the outline of the sequence of play, and all movement, combat and morale tables for quick reference as you play.

Order Counters. Die-cut counters provide an easy and fast way to five orders to each unit in the game. Enough counters are included for up to twenty units per side.

Scenarios. Six complete, ready-to-play historical simulations are included. Each scenario has a map showing terrain and unit positions, plus orders of battle and clear victory conditions.

Dice. Four 6-sided dice needed for morale and combat are provided


  • Title: The Blue-Light Manual, Wargame Rules for the American Civil War
  • Period: American Civil War
  • Type: Regimental Grand-Tactical Wargame Rules
  • Time Scale: 1 turn = 30 minutes
  • Ground Scale: 1:610 (1 mm = 2 feet)
  • Troop Scale: 1 figure = 30 men
  • Basing: 80 × 20 mm infantry stand with 4 figures
  • Casualty rate per minute at 100 meters range: (unmodified)
    • Infantry: hits
    • Cavalry (Union): hits
    • Cavalry (Confederate): hits
    • Artillery (Cannister): hits
  • Author: Edward Pauly
  • Format: 96-page rule book
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Fantasy Games Unlimited, Inc., Roslyn, NY
  • Published: 1977


Quick Reference Chart

  • Unit Roster Sheet
  • Artillery Shot and Shell Template

Wargame Rules