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Vive l'Empereur Series                               « Back 

About the series
Vive l'Empereur is a series of simulation games covering battles fought during the Napoleonic Era in Europe, between 1805 and 1815. The scale centers aroung the regiment, a good compromise between the brigade level (with no formations) and the detailed battalions. The scale is 250 m/hex and a turn is 30 minutes. Seven games have been published since 1988, and current series rules (version 3.1), have been forged from over 25 years of play.

Previous games from the Vive l’Empereur series
Since 1988, seven volumes have been published.

  • Auerstaedt 1806, Davout versus Brunswick, published by Socomer Editions 1988
  • Hanau 1813, Napoleon versus de Wrede, published by Socomer Editions 1989
  • Friedland 1807, Napoleon versus Benningsen, published by Azure Wish Editions 1996
  • Eckmuhl 1809, Davout versus the Archduke Charles in Bavaria, published by Azure Wish Editions 1998
  • Austerlitz 1805, the battle of the three Emperors, published, published by Azure Wish Editions 2003
  • Leipzig 1813, the battle of Nations, including ten maps and a thousand counters, published by Pratzen Editions 2007
  • Le Retour de l’Empereur, four games of the 1815 campaign: Ligny, Quatre Bras, Wavre and Waterloo, published by Pratzen Editions 2010

The first six games are the topic of the following Consimworld forum found here.
The last game is the topic of the following Consimworld forum found here.

The series: reviews
Most players enjoying Napoleonic combat start with a brigade level game, as simple as The Last Battles by K. Zucker. Then when they want to explore more tactical issues like formation, firepower and melee, cavalry charges, front, flank and rear facings, then they naturally move to a regimental level game like the Vive l’Empereur series. Less complex and as rich as the battalion level, this game system is now seen as a good compromise with reasonable size battlefields to recreate all the battles of the era, including the biggest ones.

An example of review, written by the savy Charles Vasey, can be found here:

Customer comments:

  • “It's a very nice and clean system to simulate tactical Napoleonic battles. Easier and faster to play than La bataille series, it's a game with much historical depth. » (Thierry Seguy)
  •  “A comfortable niche between the battalion level games and the brigade or higher level grand tactical games a la Eagles of the Empire or NLB” » (Markus Stumpner).
  • “A beautiful wargame that simulates in detail the Napoleonic battles. Formations, columns, lines, square, voltigeurs, limbered artillery, unlimbered artillery, attrition, influence of leaders... complete and very clear in its rules.” » (Joel Cambre)
  • “A regimental level, tactical scale game with some meat on its bones. It offers a deep Napoleonic fix for those days when La Bataille is just too much. » (Mark Naught)

The future volumes
The Vive l'Empereur Series will continue with:

Volume IX - Quatre batailles en Allemagne, with a new edition of the first two games in the series, Auerstaedt in 1806, Hanau in 1813, and two new battles, la Katzbach 1813 and Jena 1806.

Volume X - Quatre batailles de 1809, covering the Austrian campaign and will include: Eckmuhl, Abensberg, Essling, and the second biggest battle of the time, Wagram.

And more can follow. Additional battles in the Peninsular war, four battles in Poland in 1806- 1807, four battles of the campaign in France in 1814, and so on.

About the designer
I am Didier Rouy, 52, a wargame designer, scientist, and medical doctor living in California. I published last year with Pratzen Editions my eleventh wargame. I am the former director of the publication of the Journal du Stratege, I was the first President of the Cercle de Strategie, a club gathering wargamers from all over France. I have been playing for 35 years, writing about it for 30, and creating games for 25.

In addition to the seven published games of the series, I authored three volumes of campaign games (le Vol de l’Aigle, « the flight of the Eagle ») with Pratzen Editions and a tactical system, le Combat de l’Aigle (« The Eagle Fights »).

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