The Battle of Saratoga
A Stupendous Victory
Many people mistakenly believe that “Cinco de Mayo” is “Mexican Independence Day.” (That event is actually September 16.)
No, “Cinco de Mayo” celebrates the surprising vic- tory of the Mexicans over the French invaders at the Battle of Puebla. Surprising, and the first sign— the first ray of hope— that the Mexicans could actually win.
By that standard, the U.S. should celebrate October 17 as “Saratoga Day.” For of all the battles in the American Revolution, this campaign was the one that really gave the Patriots a belief that they could win—and convinced the outside world (starting with France) that the rebels were worth supporting. Take away the victory at Saratoga, and we can only wonder how much more time would have passed before the French alliance happened…if ever.
Now you can explore the two main battles of Saratoga, both Freeman’s Farm and Bemis Heights, as a grow- ing storm of colonial militia and regulars, commanded by Gates but really led by Arnold, turned “Gentleman Johnny’s” adventure into a disaster.
Rob Markham’s design gives life to the combatants, as players wrestle with command-control, fog-of-war, and troop quality ratings that mean a larger force may actually be weaker.
Can you, as the British, salvage the campaign and avoid turning the rebellion into a world war? Can you, as the Americans, motivate “Granny Gates” into actually putting all his troops into action and creating the great victory that might have given him what he wanted (to replace Washington!)? The choices are yours, as you decide whether October 17 becomes an American or a British holiday.
The Battle of Saratoga contains:
One 11” by 17” mounted map sheet
One set of 200 die cut mounted counters
One 8 page rulebook
Part of the TPS "Decisive Battles" series
That means straightforward rules, key insights into the history behind the game, and designs aimed at one-session conclusions and high replay value.
About the Designer: Rob Markham has been an enthusiastic wargamer since his grandmother bought him TAHGC’s D-Day at age 10, he has designed over 100 published games, including Napoleon at the Berezina, Go Tell the Spartans, and Campaigns of King David. His designs and articles have been finalists over 20 times for various awards, and his Raid on St. Nazaire won a Charles Roberts Award as did his article on the Berezina in Against the Odds Magazine. Rob has also served as editor of Volunteers Magazine and contributing editor of North and South Magazine. When not involved in history, he may be heard on Tuesday nights as the co-host of Shout Brother Shout, a radio show devoted to new and old Americana roots music on WXCI, 91.7. He also reports to Living Blues radio charts.