Throwing Thunderbolts

Throwing Thunderbolts

A Wargamer’s Guide to the War of the First Coalition, 1792–7

Garry David Wills

Throwing Thunderbolts is a unique guide to wargaming the battles, both large and small, of the War of the First Coalition, 1792-7, when the combined might of Europe's great powers attempted to overthrow the French Revolution. Throwing Thunderbolts will interest novice and veteran wargamers alike with nine ready-made scenarios.
Date Published :
April 2023
Publisher :
Helion and Company
Series :
Helion Wargames
Illustration :
c 100 color ills, 19 maps
Format Available    QuantityPrice
Binding. : Paperback
ISBN : 9781804512036
Pages : 240
Dimensions : 9.8 X 7.1 inches
Stock Status : Not Yet Published. Available for Pre-Order


‘Peoples do not judge in the same way as courts of law… they throw thunderbolts!’ — Maximilien Robespierre.

Throwing Thunderbolts is a unique guide to wargaming the wars of the French Revolution that both the beginner and experienced wargamer, new to the period, will enjoy and find useful. This is a book for wargamers based on history rather than a history book. It will explain how the battles of the revolution can be recreated by some of the different wargame systems available at an appropriate scale. The focus of this volume is the War of the First Coalition, 1792–7, which involved more than one hundred and fifty battles and actions, all of which offer potential scenarios for different wargames. The armies of France, Britain, Spain, Austria, Prussia, United Provinces (the Netherlands), Sardinia Piedmont, Hannover, Hesse-Kassel, Hesse Darmstadt and the Two Sicilies (Naples) are all involved in this great conflict, involving action on all the borders of France as well as the internal counter-revolution. The navies of Britain and France also fought in the Atlantic, the Mediterranean and in the West and East Indies, where their armies also fought bloody campaigns. To capture the full benefits of this focus the Second Partition of Poland (1792–3), the Haitian Revolution (1791–1804) and the Third Anglo Mysore War (1790-1792) are excluded from the scope of this work. This is an exciting period for wargamers as the art of war was undergoing continual transformation which was reflected in the way the different armies fought, and this guide will bring this to the fore. A comprehensive review of the military history of the war provides the background complete with clear maps. Throwing Thunderbolts covers the full gamut of wargaming this period, selecting scales and rules and painting miniatures. Throwing Thunderbolts includes nine ready-made scenarios, using popular, commercially available rulesets, covering the full range of the combatants and at different scales of game. Included in the scenarios are the first major battles of both Napoleon Bonaparte and the Duke of Wellington, at Toulon, 1793, and Boxtel, 1794 respectively. The Battle of Castiglione is fought in full at two different scales, and the armies of Prussia and Sardinia Piedmont feature strongly in two more scenarios. Two further scenarios are naval scenarios including a part of the Glorious First of June and a frigate action in the East Indies. Throwing Thunderbolts is essential reading for anyone interested in recreating the War of the First Coalition with miniatures on the tabletop. Throwing Thunderbolts is a unique book, no other publication deals with wargaming the War of the First Coalition so comprehensively.

About The Author

Garry was born in Kingston upon Thames, UK. He studied at Brunel and Nottingham Universities for a first degree in Applied Chemistry and subsequently a master’s degree in Food Science. Garry worked for Mars Incorporated for 28 years, but since retiring in 2008 he has been pursuing a lifelong interest in the Napoleonic Wars, which began in 1973 when he started wargaming the period. In 2009 Garry had an article on Denis Davidov published in First Empire magazine and then self-published his first book in 2011, Wellington’s First Battle, about the Battle of Boxtel in 1794. Based on this research Garry also had a series of articles published in the Smoothbore Ordnance Journal relating to British artillery in Flanders 1793-5. In 2018, Garry also published a small booklet summarising three years of research into the 24 men recorded on the WW1 memorial in his village. His passion is to bring the smaller or lesser known actions to life using quality archived based research.

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