Owning Napoleon's Imperium Posted on 9 Nov 19:54 , 0 comments

Napoleon’s Imperium – Published April 2021 by Compass Games in conjunction with ADG

So, you have taken the plunge and purchased a copy of Napoleon's Imperium. Both congratulations and our appreciation and thanks are in order! You have just purchased the foundation stone of a growing game, so keep your eyes posted for new developments.

Napoleon's Imperium is a great entry-level game into Napoleonic theatre and an excellent game to play with friends that would not otherwise be interested in the period or engaged in wargaming.

 It's light enough not to be intimidating the new player and yet has some surprising high level of depth, strategy, and challenge for the more experienced. Of course, the more you play, the more you will discover and understand this, so make sure you play the game with different nations!

But mostly, Napoleon's Imperium is about having some good fun with friends, so it is designed as a game, not a history textbook. Hence, it's abstract and general; however, you will soon be playing your sea battles like Trafalgar, land battles like Leipzig and Waterloo, and wars like seventh and eighth Russo - Turk wars, and campaigns like the winter matches on the Russian capital. You'll be surprised by the twists and turns this game brings.


Everything about Napoleon's Imperium is designed to take the pain out of the gameplay, building the history in without you realising it. After all, it started life as a corporate training team building game in the 1990s, so it had to be quick and easy to teach, learn and a little disguised as not to intimidate potential corporate customers. (Not everyone is as enthusiastic about war games as we are!) At first sight, the corporate ladies tended to lift an eyebrow. But ironically, they proved the best performers, playing more as a team than as individuals.

In contrast, the guys tended to see the game and say, "war game! I got this!" And then go in all gun-hoe to become early cannon fodder! So, Napoleon's Imperium is very much a team-based game which is your biggest hint!

In the Box!

When opening the game box, you will notice that the battle card packs sit on top of a black n white sheet. This sheet is the same as the file available for download on BGG. "Napoleons Imperium Update Sheet with Invasion Rules 20B 20C AND 33B", so if you want it in colour copy, download and print out via BGG.

 This sheet contains a couple of errata notes, but very little. The sheet is mainly about the added "Sea Invasion and Transport Rules", which do not appear in Rule Book. They are important rules and have been added at the recommendation of the Team Napoleon playtest team in the period between when the board game art was sent to printers and the game was released in April 2021 (approx. a 12-month gap).

Napoleon’s Imperium Player Support: BGG

I have added some great player aids for download to BGG site for Napoleon’s Imperium, so check out the files section. There are many resources available for Napoleon's Imperium now, which will continue to grow.

Besides BGG, ADG and Compass Games, I have made a dedicated YouTube Channel for Napoleon's Imperium where you can find plenty of designer and industry content.

There are two main playlists located there. The first play list is Napoleon’s Imperium Support Playlist: These are designer made player support videos.

The Second is Napoleon’s Imperium Unboxing and reviews: These list content created by significant YouTube content creators and industry reviews. This playlist features content created by Moe's Games Table, The Playersaid, TheGimpyGamer, Gilbert Collins, Rob's Tabletop World, Wise Guy History, Ardwulf's Lair, The Discriminating Gamer, Moffett Field, Play More Games, Compass Games

There are also two additional playlists, which I will continually add to as I spot helpful material. One looks at Napoleonic history made simple. The other I have called the 'Wargaming Knowledge Bible", which source for understanding all the complex terms associated with wargames and the types of war games. You can also google "Napoleon's Imperium" for reviews and videos. 

Game Care:

When you open the box, it all looks neat and compact. However, you will soon realise that the components and counters, when unpacked, will quickly fill the box to the rafters. The video below talks about accessories and the care of your game.



Napoleon's Imperium Vassal Module

There is nothing like owning the tactile board game and the satisfaction that it brings. But to aid and reward those that purchase the game, and in recognition that the Covid19 epidemic has forced many of us to game online for a season, we have developed a very comprehensive Vassal module. You will see the same amount of care and effort has gone into the Vassal module creation as reflected for the board game.

Of course, you won't have the game rules or the crucial Empire Reference Charts in the Vassal, but some constructive new player aids charts are included to enhance the online gameplay. Equally, some aids are available for downloaded on BBG.


I recommend the Battle Cards players aid explanations charts (which make interpretations of consequences easy) and combat checklist (both in Vassal and BBG) as must-haves for players.

Make sure you download the Napoleons Imperium Vassal Players Aid guide from BGG too. It will make navigating and learning Vassal much easier!

 So, dive in, read your rule book. It's set out chronologically, with excellent notes, examples, and illustrations, leading you through each rule in order. Although it's 40 pages long, this is more due to its index pages and many charts and graphics, including large font sizes for easy reading. Everything is designed with the players comfort in mind.

There's a lot more to come for Napoleon's Imperium so that you can look at your game as the foundation stone. Check-in regularly BGG for questions and answers as I am continuously checking in to support. I am just as passionately connected with the ongoing support of players as I am to the continuing development of Napoleon's Imperium.

Kind regards

Andrew Rowland

Napoleon’s Imperium Game Designer