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Army February 28, 2013
Wargaming is growing in popularity among
soldiers and gaining credibility with leaders as
enthusiasts put their strategies into action over
FEW can match Cpl Tyron Casey
for tactical prowess. He's honed
his strategies over more than a
thousand hours in battle during
countless past and future wars.
The NCO from 1RAR, along with
Maj Dave Hill and Sgt Michael Keep,
run the ADF Wargaming Association
(ADFWGA), which brings together
enthusiasts from all three services with
their painstakingly detailed, hand-painted
models once a year to
fight it out over table-
"We're not your
book guys off The
Simpsons," Cpl Casey
says. "A rugby front
rower from 6RAR
plays. An ex-Navy
surgeon plays. It's the
perfect complement to
what we do as soldiers.
"Players must win
by achieving objectives
with tactical prowess and the ability to
adapt to the fortunes of war, much like
commanding troops in the real world."
A two-day tournament in December
is the only time the ADFWGA comes
together, but in that short time it raises
thousands of dollars for charity.
Last year's tournament in Townsville
raised $10,000 for Legacy and Cpl Casey
hopes this year's event will do even better.
"I don't think any other ADF competi-
tion is as focused on charity as we are,"
Cpl Casey says. "We've been donating
to Legacy since the ADFWGA started
in 2010 and so far we've raised about
Cpl Casey says although the
ADFWGA "only really exists for those
two days in December", many of its
members are also part of WW40k, the
wargaming society he set up with his
wife, Tamara, in 2009, which has also
raised about $5000 for charity over the
WW40k regularly hosts events in
Townsville for its following of mostly
military members, and this year will host
the Anzac Cup at RAAF Base Amberley
from April 6-7.
"We run some of the best events in
Australia and it's getting more popular
all the time," Cpl Casey says.
"We now have members in Brisbane
and Sydney as well as Townsville. At
the tournament in Townsville last year
we filled a basketball court with war-
gaming tables and at this year's event
we might need two basketball courts."
Wargaming options are broad, from
recreations of World War II armies and
battles to far future
with aliens and high-
It might look like
a group of grown
men playing with
toys, but it requires
serious strategy and
of the principles of
weapon ranges and
all simulated and wargame commanders
will need to use the battlefield to their
advantage, as well as force multipliers
such as direct and indirect fire support,
in order to succeed.
"All the things you can think of in
warfare we can replicate on the table
either with rules or a bit of imagina-
tion," Cpl Casey says.
"We want to encourage those who
game or used to game to dust off their
collections and get back into the hobby.
"Wargaming has been found to
encourage tactical thought and plan-
ning, develop an interest in military his-
The 2013 ADFWGA champion-
ships will be held in early December
at Lavarack Barracks. The association
has encouraged units to aid their teams
attending to compete in Warhammer
40,000, Warhammer Fantasy and
Flames of War.
For more information go to www.adfwga.com
To get involved in wargaming ahead of the end-
of-year tournament, contact WW40k through
the website www.ww40k.com
REGARDLESS of the setting, most tab-
letop wargames follow similar concepts.
Two players choose the game, rules
and objectives and build their armies to
a defined points limit. Different classes
of unit have different points values
depending on their attributes and effec-
tiveness, so the two armies might not
be equal in size but should be evenly
The players then face off on a six-
foot by four-foot table and start the turn-
based battle. In each turn a player can
move troops -- the distance a unit can
move is determined by its stats and the
terrain -- shoot and enter melee combat.
The outcome of each shot or sword/
bayonet stroke is determined by a com-
bination of a unit's attributes and dice
rolls, so an overmatched soldier could
occasionally land a lucky blow on an
opponent, but commanders who rely on
the dice rather than sound strategy are
unlikely to succeed.
Tournaments usually require play-
ers to paint their own models, which are
judged along with a wargamer's tactical
prowess during the tournament.
All the things
you can think of
in the real world
we can replicate
on the table ...
-- Cpl Tyron Casey,
ADF Wargaming Association
HOW WARGAMING WORKS
Going to war:
last year's ADF
off in Townsville.
Inset, a World
War II battlefield is
during the event.
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