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Návarchoi is a low complexity game of ancient naval combat, designed to play quickly and with as many ships as possible. The game’s title is taken from the the Greek term for “admiral.” Typically, the battles simulated by this game system involved fleets comprised of hundreds of ships on a side. Unfortunately doing so is nearly impossible in play, so each ship represents several ships and the battles are more interpretations than actual simulations. The game is designed to entertain more so than to educate, but players should still derive a sense for the tactics of the period.


The game includes seven historical scenarios covering the following battles:


  •  Catana (397 BCE)

  •  Salamis of Cyprus (306 BCE)

  •  Ecnomus (256 BCE)

  •  Drepanum (249 BCE)

  •  Aegatian Isles (242 BCE)

  •  Lilybaeum (218 BCE)

  •  Side (190 BCE)

  •  Myonessus (190 BCE)


Also included is an introductory scenario whose options allow players to learn the game’s mechanics in a “programmed” fashion (a little bit at a time), as well as detailed “Design Your Own” guidelines.


What makes this game different from other naval games is that it is “card driven.” A deck of 54 cards is used by the players to provide a means to both activate ships for movement and combat, but also provide period “feel” through special events and abilities. Also, rather than a “standard” hex-based map, I’ve opted to go with a square grid to regulate movement. Doing so allows eight movement vectors (rather than six), and allows for a more accurate portrayal of the linear formations used during that period.


All of this tied together by a simple set of rules that is roughly eight pages in length!


The game scale is roughly seventy-five yards per square and a ship may represent one or several ships. The time scale is extremely loose, running anywhere from 1 to 10 minutes per turn, depending on what’s going on.


Nàvarchoi is currently awaiting publication by Legion Wargames.


You can pre-order a copy of Nàvarchoi for $58 (ordinarily, $80) by clicking here.



The components for the game include:


  • 1 Deck of 55 Playing Cards (54 Action Cards and a Turn Track)

  •  4 11x17” Map Board Panels

  •  2 Player Aid Cards

  •  2 Sheets of 1x.5” counters

  •  1 Sheet of .5” counters

  •  1 Set of Rules

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