DBA Resource Page

Campaign Scenarios and Rules

Linear Campaign Scenarios

Ancient and medieval history is replete with stories of ambitious individuals who sought to build mighty empires through military conquest. Consider, for example, Alexander the Great, Julius Caesar, Charlesmagne and William the Conquerer. The following is a campaign variant designed for two players, which pits would-be conquerers against a series of opponents whose goal is to thwart the conquerer's ambitions. It is referred to as a linear campaign in that players don't need to worry about campaign maps, occupying territories, withstanding seiges, etc. Instead, it is a campaign involving a series of pre-programmed battles against selected opponents.

Suggested Scenarios

Conquerer Foe 1 Foe 2 Foe 3
Cyrus the Great (28a) Medes (18c) Lydians (18d) New Babylonians (18a)
Darius (28a) Skythian (25) Early Indian (21a) Early Hoplite Greek (24a)
Alexander of Macedon (36) Later Hoplite Greek (32) Later Achaemenid Persian (33) Early Indian (21a)
Julius Caesar (59) Gallic (35) Pompeian Romans (59) Parthians (51)
Trajan (64) Dacians (68) Armenians (44) Parthians (51)
Atilla the Hun (79) Goths (70) Franks (74) Late Roman-West (77a)
Ambrosius Aurelianus (82) Saxons (75a) Picts (67) Dalraidic Scots (61)
Charlesmagne (102a) Saxons (75a) Lombards (85) Andalusian (103)
William the Conquerer (102c) Anglo-Danes (113) Pre-Feudal Scots (111) Welsh (92)
Ghengis Khan (154) Sung Chinese (116) Khwarizmian (146) Early Russians (129)
Timur (Tamerlane) (159b) Mongols (154) Hindu Indians (83a) Later Ottomans (160b)
Charles the Bold (180) Low Countries (163) Later Swiss (161b) French Ordonnance (178)

This list of scenarios is by no means exclusive. Other campaign scenarios can be generated from the exiting DBA lists using historical opponents, and/or additional foes can be added to the suggested scenarios so that campaigns consist of 4 or more battles. To retain the character of the game, however, the "conquerer" should be an identifiable historical figure.

See David Kuijt's Crusader Conquest scenarios.

Special Rules

All normal rules of DBA battles apply with the following additions:

For each battle, one player takes the role of the "conquerer." The other player commands the opposing army. The "conquerers" goal is to defeat each of the three listed opponents, who must be fought in the order indicated. If the "conquerer" loses any battle or has his general element destroyed, then the attempted conquest is over.

Players can alternate roles as "conquerer" and "defender" after each game (i.e., fighting each battle on the same terrain, with players taking turns fighting each army), or the campaign can be fought all the way through before switching sides.

Points are also accumulated by the "conquerer" so that if both or neither player successfully completes the conquest, then the victor is the "conquerer" who has acquired the greatest number of points.

Points are acquired as follows:

  • +3 for winning a battle
  • +2 for looting a camp
  • +1 for killing an opposing general
  • +1 for each enemy element killed
  • -1 for each friendly element lost
  • -2 for having your camp looted

Casualties are carried over from one game to the next. At the end of each battle, a successful "conquerer" may replace up to two casualties with elements drafted from the defeated army for use in the next contest. Only surviving elements may be drafted. So, for example, if the "conquerer" sustains four casualties in game one, he can recruit two replacements from his defeated foe and begins game two with ten elements.


John McLennan created a 12 board linear format for a two player, Athens vs. Sparta campaign.

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Last Updated: April 20, 2000

Questions, comments, and feedback are welcome. Sent them to my attention at IamFanaticus@gmail.com.