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Deluxe Guadalcanal: The Battle for Henderson Field is a grand tactical game on the efforts of the U.S. Marine Corps and U.S. Army to capture and hold the island of Guadalcanal during the beginning of the island-hopping campaign to push back the Japanese empire. Errors in strategy and logistics at large made this effort extremely difficult for the Marines, as they held on to the island in the face of Japanese on-slaught with dwindling supplies.

Players experience huge swings of fortune from one side to the other and back again as the battle for the island unfolds. Critical to the efforts of both sides is the capture and holding of Henderson Field, an air strip whose control dictates air supperiority and the ability to land supplies and much needed reinforcements.

The game includes a huge 17” by 55” map, provided in easily printed letter- and tabloid-sized sheets (8.5x11” and 11x17” respectively), that covers the northern extents of the island. Combat units are mostly battalions, with a smattering of regiments and companies, representing infantry, armor, and artillery. There are also specialized units such as engineers and LVTs that aid in the maintenance or destruction of Henderson Field as well as movement across the difficult jungle terrain.

The basis for Deluxe Guadalcanal is the original Guadalcanal game published by The Avalon Hill Game Company in 1966. The project began as an effort to create an updated version of the original game’s map, providing some tweaks here an there for accuracy or playability. Once completed, it was not that much of an effort to also create a new, colorful set of counters (including new informational markers) that simplifies play. It was then a short, additional step to rewrite the rules in a manner that incorporates some of the “advanced” rules, some new rules and mechanics, and known errata to create a new, cohesive rules set of under twelve pages.

Now, YOU can refight the battle for Guadalcanal!


Deluxe Guadalcanal was originally made available in a "print-and-play" version at Wargame Vault. It's now available in a fully printed edition from War Diary Publications. Click here to purchase a copy!


The components for the game include:


  • 1 Large Map presented in two 19x27" sections

  • 2 Sheets of unit and status markers

  • 3 Player Aid Cards

  • 9 Random Events Cards

  • 1 Rules Manual



War Diary Publications



Game Rules

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