The game revolves around lead soldiers and battlefields made from whatever materials were on hand, usually blocks or other toys. Little Wars is considered by some to be the first modern table top war game. It includes rules for infantry, cavalry, and even artillery in the form of toy naval guns that launch projectiles. In addition to being a war game manual, the development of the game is revealed as well as Wells' belief in pacifism.
r a detachment shall be considered to be isolated when there is less than half its number of its own side within a move of it. Now, in actual civilised warfare small detached bodies do not sell their lives dearly; a considerably larger force is able to make them prisoners without difficulty. Accordingly we decided that if a blue force, for example, has one or more men isolated, and a red force of at least double the strength of this isolated detachment moves up to contact with it, the blue men will be considered to be prisoners.
That seemed fair; but so desperate is the courage and devotion of lead soldiers, that it came to this, that any small force that got or seemed likely to get isolated and caught by a superior force instead of waiting to be taken prisoners, dashed at its possible captors and slew them man for man. It was manifestly unreasonable to permit this. And in considering how best to prevent such inhuman heroisms, we were reminded of another frequent incident in our battles that also erred tow
This book is fascinating for anyone with an interest in wargaming or the writing of H.G Wells. What I especially liked was the way it really gave an insight into the authors character, he comes over as warm hearted, playful and every bit as intelligent as you would expect from the author of so many great books. I have wanted to read this book for a long time but have never been able to find a copy, it's a superb read.