BATTLESYSTEM

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BATTLESYSTEM (all caps!) is (or was) a tactical wargaming RPG system by Douglas Niles, with Michael Dobson doing the play-coordinating grunt work. Several old-school D&D modules use it.

The 'SYSTEM developed from the first Bloodstone Pass adventure, which the selfsame authors published separately in boxed-set module form. Also helping out were "Zeb" (sic) Cook and Jon Pickens; with Dave Sutherland and Dave LaForce on map duty. The internal art is scrunched up so tiny it can't be appreciated, so editing FAIL.

BATTLESYSTEM gave players with high Charisma something to do - leading armies - so deserves more love than it perhaps got.

It supplants that first TSR attempt at wargaming, Chainmail. In the BXCMI series, the War Machine had filled this niche, which Niles himself had helped test at Norwold; although that was higher-level than what Niles and Dobson were going for here. Later Dobson's module X10 will figure, why not have both!

While TSR was going second-edition, Niles took that opportunity to overhaul the 'SYSTEM too supposedly easier to play with less math. Dobson didn't contribute; instead Jon Pickens directed the playtesting, and Dave Sutherland did the graphic design. Unfortunately there was no art designer here as the book is stuffed with art ripped off earlier modules, like the Blizzard Pass and Savage Coast covers.