English Rules

Rules V1.0b

for Skirmish Wars on BoardGameGeek


Skirmish Wars: Advance Tactics is a light - medium weight wargame based on the wildly popular turn-based strategy game - Advance Wars released by Nintendo. It is a print and play game with a modular game board system for endless variety. The main objective is to capture your enemy's HQ or eliminate all enemy threats. Players will start many scenarios without units and just a handful of money. By building units and capturing cites, players can raise new capital in order to build bigger armies.


1.0 Included in the PDF:

  • Terrain Tiles (print as many as you want – but print at least 9)
  • Terrain elements (trees, hills, cities, factories)
  • Four Armies along with player cities and factories
  • Unit Cards (1 set per player)
  • Terrain Defense Modifier Chart and VP Tracking Board

1.1 Recommended components provided by you

  • Cubes or counters used to determine capture points. I have found coins work well.
  • One 6-sided Die
  • Poker chips or some other token to use as money. Paper money will work fine. The price range of units in the game go from $1 to $16, so poker chips seem to work really well.


2.0 Basic Skirmish setup

If playing a scenario, follow the scenario setup instructions.
Otherwise, choose any number of the terrain tiles provided and lay them out orthogonally on the table in any way you see fit. I suggest using a balanced/symmetrical setup for beginners.
2.1 Place neutral cities and factories on the board.
2.2 Place any terrain elements you would like. (trees, hills, etc.)
2.3 Place terrain effects chart within reach of each player
2.4 Each player takes 1 set of unit cards, and all the units of one color.
2.5 Each player takes $5 starting money.
2.6 Choose a starting player.
2.7 Choose a Victory Condition (see 4.0)



3.0 Each player's turn consists of a few phases. Going in clockwise order, each player continues taking turns, one at a time, till the game is over.

  1. Collect Income
  2. Repair Units
  3. Move and Attack
  4. Purchase and Place Units

3.1 Collecting Income – For every friendly controlled city, the player receives $5 at the beginning of their turn. Friendly factories do not count towards this total. The player’s HQ does count towards this total.

3.2 Repairing Units – Each unit that is on a friendly HQ, Factory, or City gains 2 HP. You cannot go over the max of 8. A building in the middle of being captured is not friendly.

3.3 Movement and Combat – Each unit can activate on the player\’s turn. Each unit must complete it's activation before you move on to the next unit. (You cannot move a unit out the way, move another unit, then move the first unit back)

3.3a A unit may move and then fire if it is a direct fire unit (meaning it has a range of one). If a unit is an indirect combat unit (has a firing range of over 1) it may either move OR fire on its turn, but it may not do both. Once a unit fires, its activation is done for the remaining turn. This means a direct fire unit may not move after firing, even if it did not move before it fired.

3.3b Units may move up to their movement point total (MP). MP is stated on the unit and on the unit card. Each unit may only move orthogonally, it may never move diagonally. You can change direction while moving. Units may not move through other units. Therefore if a unit blocks the path of another unit it may not move any further or must find another way around. Each square of movement costs 1 MP unless noted by the units terrain movement modifiers. Factories, HQs and Cites all count as roads for movement purposes.

  • Example: A tread unit moves through the grass terrain at 1 MP per square but if it moves through a forest it costs 2 MP per square of forest terrain. A tread unit may not move over water or hill spaces.

3.3c APC units have a special purpose. An APC unit may carry up to 2 foot units at a time. While inside the APC, the units are protected, however if the APC is destroyed the foot units inside are also destroyed. At the end of the APC’s movement it may unload one or both of the foot units. Once unloaded the foot units may not move, fire or capture until the next turn. Units may be loaded into the APC before or after its movement but not during.

3.3d Infantry and Mechs load onto the APC by moving onto the APC's square (paying the MP cost of the terrain) and they must automatically load in. The may not not move in if there is no room in the APC. Put the unit under the APC. If the APC hasn't activated yet, then when it does, it can move, taking the unit/s with it. At the end of it's move, it can unload. Move the unloaded unit to any of the 4 spaces orthogonally adjacent to the APC that are normally available to the unloaded unit. If no spaces are legal, you cannot unload the unit. Do this for each of the units in the APC, one at a time. You may unload one or both, in any order.

3.4a Ground Combat – If the target is within the unit's range (indicated on the unit piece and unit card – range is counted orthogonally just like movement) the unit may fire upon its target. The player declares what unit is firing and it's target. The process for resolving each battle is as follows.

  • Determine the units firepower against its particular target. To determine the firepower the player needs to look at what type of unit it is firing upon. The Target Unit has a symbol in the lower right hand corner. On the Attacker's unit card is the firepower for the unit against that type of target. Whatever the number is, that is the firepower rating of the unit. If that attacker is reduced then look at the Reduced set of numbers.
  • The player takes that number and from it subtracts the target's defense rating (the number in the shield on it's counter or unit card) to get an initial damage total.
  • The player then takes this number and references it against the "Terrain Defense Modifiers" chart. Cross referencing this number against the type of terrain the target is currently on gives a final hit total plus a die result. The number given is the hit total and then the player must roll a single D6. If the die result is equal to or less than the number indicated on the die on the chart, then 1 additional hit is occurred against the target.
  • The HP of the target is reduced by this number. This is done by rotating the unit to show the current HP facing the controlling player. Meaning if a unit currently has 6 HP then the side with the 6 on it will actually be on the far side from the controlling player, but the 6 will be right side up.
  • If a units HP total goes below 5, the unit chit is flipped over and the unit is considered reduced. Reduced units have a lower firepower rating (indicated on the unit cards) and can only capture properties at 1 capture point per turn.
  • After the hit points have been determined and the targets HP(health) has been adjusted accordingly, the target may fire back at the attacking unit if it is in range. The combat is not simultaneous - meaning that the unit may now have to fire at reduced strength, even if it was just reduced in the previous attack.

3.4b Capturing Property – Neutral and enemy properties can only be captured by foot units (infantry or mechs). To capture a property a foot unit must move onto that property and declare a capture (an attack against the property). All properties except HQ\’s have 4 Capture Points (HQ\’s have 8). A full strength unit may capture at 2 points per turn. A reduced unit can only capture at 1 point per turn.
When you move on to the property and declare the capture, immediately reduce it by the appropriate number of points. This is shown by rotating the property or by placing some kind of counter on the city to indicate that there are capture points there. Wooden cubes or any kind of coin or counter will work. This attack ends the unit's activation for this turn, just like a normal attack. If the unit moves off the property for any reason, these capture points are lost. If you have reached the appropriate number of capture points, replace the property with one of your color and remove the capture tokens (if you are using this method)

  • Example 1: A full strength unit moves onto a neutral city and declares a capture. Immediately 2 points are reduced from the city. On the next turn the remaining 2 points are removed and the city is replaced with one of the player's color. The unit capturing will not be able to move this turn as once a unit begins a capture it cannot move, thereby ending its activation for this turn.
  • Example 2: A reduced unit moves onto a city and declares a capture. 1 marker is placed on the city denoting that only 1 hit point has been removed thus far by the reduced unit. It will take another 3 turns for this particular unit to capture this city.

Example Battle:

Using the image below the blue tank (the attacking unit) is firing upon the red AA unit (the defending unit). Both units are at full strength; however the red AA unit is inside a city.

  • The first thing that is done by the blue player is to determine the base damage it would do to the AA unit.
  • First the blue player consults his unit card for the tank and looks to the Firepower rating against the AA unit. The AA unit is a tread unit so the tank uses the black (star) rating of 10. This is the base FP rating that it is firing at. Next the blue or red player (it doesn\’t matter which) consults the base defense rating of the AA unit, which is a 4.
  • So, the blue player takes his base FP rating of 10 and subtracts 4 from it to come up with an initial damage number of 6.
  • The next step the blue player makes is to consult the Terrain Defense Chart.
  • He takes his initial damage number of 6 and cross references that on the chart with the city terrain that the red AA unit is occupying. This gives him a corrected damage number of 4 with a die showing "3". The blue player then takes a d6 and rolls it. If he manages to roll a 3 or less then he will do an additional point of damage to the AA unit. For the purposes of this example lets say that he rolls a 2. Great, the blue player has done 5 damage (4+1) to the AA unit.
  • The red player reduces the AA unit by 5 HP taking it to a strength of 3 on its reduced side.
  • Now it is the AA units turn to fire back. The same process is repeated except that the AA unit now uses its reduced stats when figuring the firepower of its attack. On its reduced side the AA unit fires at a tread unit (black, star) at a FP of 7. He compares this to the 6 defense rating on the blue tank to come up with an initial damage number of 1. He then references the 1 on the Terrain sheet with the road column, since the blue tank is on a road. The result is a damage of 1 with a die indicating a "3". Again if the AA unit were to roll a 3 or less on a d6 he would do 1 additional point of damage.
  • This process is the same for any of the units. The only exception is that if the defending unit is out of range to fire back, there is no retaliatory attack. ie- An artillery unit fires upon a tank. The tank can not fire back as it is out of range. It would be the same if the tank were attacking the artillery unit as it has a range of 2-3.

3.5 Once the player has completed his movements for the turn he may purchase new units provided the player has any friendly controlled factories and those factories currently do not have a unit on top of them.

  • To purchase a unit, the player pays the cost of the unit and then places the unit on top of an empty factory space. This unit will be eligible for movement next turn and is also vulnerable to attack on his opponent's turn.

3.6 Play passes to the next player, in a counterclockwise fashion.

Winning the Game

4.0 Determining the ending conditions of the game should be done before the game begins. If playing a scenario, the scenario will dictate the victory conditions. If you are playing a freestyle skirmish you may use any of the ending conditions you wish as described below.

  • Conquest – A player gains victory by either eliminating all enemy units on the board or capturing the enemies HQ.
  • Victory Medals – Much like the victory medals in the C&C system games players may determine a number of victory medals a player needs to earn in order to claim victory. For each enemy unit eliminated on the battlefield, the player receives that unit as a victory medal. This particular unit is lost to the other player for the remainder of the game. Record Victory Medals on the included scoring track.
  • City Conquest – Players can determine a number of cities that need to be captured in order to claim victory.

Optional Rules:

CO Powers
CO cards are chosen randomly at the beginning of the game or each player may choose the CO that they would like to use. If both players want the same CO, players should roll to see who takes that CO. Some CO's have a special power that is in effect for the entire game. If so, it will be stated on the card. There are two levels for each CO power which are represented by the boxed stars on the right side of their card. The smaller stars represent the first level of their special power and the larger ones the second level.

To begin the game, place a wooden cube or counter at the top of the card - not on the stars. For every enemy unit eliminated move the counter one star down the track. Once the counter reaches the last of the smaller stars, the player has the option to use that CO's Power any time they see fit. Once the player used the power the counter is removed from the track and the process starts over.

If the player wishes, they may choose not to use the Power of the CO and keep working towards the CO's Super Power. The Super Power is available once the counter reaches the last star on the track. Any further unit eliminations do not count towards the CO powers until the Super Power is used. Once the Super Power is used the counter is returned to the starting position and the process starts over.


Game Design
Brandon Pennington
Andrew Tullsen
Matthew Koth

Game Graphic Design
Brandon Pennington

Thomas Dunagan
Jonathan Tullsen
Ron Pennington
Joe Kundlak
Shaun Austin

Joe Kundlak

Scenario Creation
Brandon Pennington
Shaun Austin

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