May 24, 2024

#UnboxingDay! A Dutiful Fight

Marc M, 16 May 2024 ~ #UnboxingDay

A Dutiful Fight: The Battle of Châteauguay, October 26, 1813, from designer Paul Rohrbaugh at High Flying Dice Games, is the latest game in the Battles for Canada series. As volume 8 in the series, A Dutiful Fight covers the United States offensive during the War of 1812 to capture Montreal. The game gives you a chance to rewrite history and push the US forces through British, Canadian and First Nation forces or confirm historical events by frustrating the US battle plan.

 

The Ziplock-packaged game A Dutiful Fight: The Battle of Châteauguay, October 26, 1813.
A Dutiful Fight: The Battle of Châteauguay, October 26, 1813, is Volume 8 of the High Flying Dice series The Battles for Canada.

 

click images to enlarge

This is a completely new topic for me, but that made it sound interesting, so I was very pleased to receive a copy of the game from Paul to try out. As a self-published game, A Dutiful Fight arrives in a Ziploc package with relatively simple components, but there’s a lot of content here for the price you’ll pay.

 

A Dutiful Fight counters, game board and rule booklet.
The game comes with 90 counters, an 11 x 17 gameboard and 8 pages of rules.

 

Once you unpack the game, you have

  • An 11 x 17 gameboard
  • 90 double-sided counters
  • The ruleset

Keep in mind that the base game ships with unmounted counters, so there’s a bit of do-it-yourself involved unless you spring for the pre-mounted counters you see above as an add-on. You can add on some game cards as well.

 

Three optional game card sheets along with the gameboard and counters for A Dutiful Fight.
The 42 optional game cards come in sheets that are ready to cut.

 

This is a card-driven/card-assisted game – the cards tell you how much you can do during one round of turn. With the base came, you add standard playing cards for this. You can also order a deck 42 Battles for Canada cards that work with the game. 

A close-up of the optional game cards showing actions players can take during a round.
The game cards are an optional add-on to the game, but standard playing cards will work too.

 

The cards are printed on card stock, and you’ll cut them yourself. Thankfully, Paul supplied both add-ons. Playing cards would work fine, but matched cards are a nice touch. One more thing – you’ll need to supply a 6-sided die.

The first page of the rules for A Dutiful Fight.
The rulebook begins by setting up the events leading up to the Battle of Châteauguay.

 

The 8-page rulebook, like the other components, is self-printed, so it’s on plain paper, but that’s fine. It’s easy to read through them and get the sense that while this isn’t a terribly complicated game, there is some complexity there, such as morale, routing, assaults, advances after combat and random events.

Counters representing U S. British, Canadian and First Nation forces on the game map.
The counter set is relatively small but includes a variety of units.

 

A Dutiful Fight includes 90 double-sided, 5/8-inch counters (units and game markers) including, among the US forces: regular infantry and militia, as well as dragoons and artillery. On the opposing side are British and Candian units representing militia and regular infantry, as well as First Nation warriors. Both sides also have several leaders.

The 11-inch by 17-inch map for A Dutiful Fight.
The game map includes the play area, turn record track, moral track and terrain effects chart.

 

The 11 x 17 paper game map covers the swampy terrain of the battle. Most of the hexes are swamp/woods, along with the Châteauguay River, some trails and an abatis, a defensive barrier made of fallen trees. The map sheet also includes the turn track, moral track and a terrain effects chart. All of this fits comfortably on even a small desk or table.

The game A Dutiful Fight set up on a table and ready to play.
The game has a small footprint and sets up in just a few minutes.

 

Setup for A Dutiful Fight is refreshingly quick, and with US reinforcements ready to enter the fight, and the first game cards turned to check initiative, you’re ready to start round one of the first turn.

 


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