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I'm a big fan of the "Perfect Captain" range of free rules not just because of their innovative neatness but also the detailed, immersive knowledge of the periods and spectacular graphic chrome which show they are an obvious labour of love for the subject matter. Oh and did I mention they were free? They ask instead you make a donation to charity for every download but no obligation.
1) "Red Actions" which is for the Russian Civil War and related conflicts such as the Polish-Bolshevik and Polish-Ukrainian wars post WW1 - one of my main interests and Strelets have the figures including the upcoming Polish Haller's Blue Army.
2) Their suite of War of 1812 rules: "Cousin Jonathan" for the larger battles, "John Bull" for the smaller actions/skirmishes and a campaign system "Obstinate Beyond Description" covering the Niagara campaign of 1814. Again, Strelets is coming up with the figures.
3) "A Coat of Steel" are contingent-based rules for the larger battles of the War of the Roses (just as "Lion Rampant" are for smaller contingent/retinue based medieval games - I'm also a fan of those). The USP of ACOS is they make these sorts of battles anything but a boring scrum with everyone just piling in. Must confess I have only a passing interest in the War of the Roses but I'm attempting to convert these to 12th-14th century Japanese samurai warfare for which they would be excellent.
All of their rule sets:
Their yahoo discussion group:
Finally I should say I have no connection to Perfect Captain even if this sounds like an ad But even then, did I mention they are free....?
Thanks for this interesting reply, I shall certainly look into the Perfect Captain rules. With Lion Rampant we fight bigger battles than skirmishes. We simply use our multiple based figures, so, for example 4 bases of 8 figures per base represents a large unit such as yeomen or sergeants but only two bases for a men at arms of bidower unit. We don't worry about facing or the 3 inch rule and it gives the feel of a nice big battle that is very playable.
Surprised that nobody else has replied - obviously, a topic that is less interesting to people than I thought!
SYW: "A Glorious War". Probably the best rules ever written.....umm, by me!
Fast play & meets all my prejudices about Lace Wars' battles. Large battalions, bloody & you need to appreciate the tactics of the period to get the best out of them. Only $10 for a PDF.
Field of Glory: Ancient & Renaissance versions. A moderately dense set of rules but once you get the hang of them they produce exciting games that mirror the periods of warfare they propose to represent. Meant as a tournament game set but fine for "normal" games too.
General D'armee: new Napoleonic rules. Yet to play them but they will replace our long standing but clunky former N. rules. Reading them suggests they tick all of the boxes. Written by one the most respected rule writers out there (David Brown).
Blitz Krieg Commander: fast play WW2. They simply work. Probably not great for "rivet-counters" who want endless "accurate" detail but good enough for me.
The Men Who Would Be Kings: Colonial set. We've been gaming the Mahdist Wars in them recently & they give a quick & nail-biting game not unlike the venerable The Sword & the Flame but without the clunky mechanisms (carrying your wounded etc).
SAGA: Dark Age skirmish rules that produce short but fun games. The meanest intelligence could learn them.