A message from Microgames HQ founder Mark Johnson:
Welcome to the Internet home for small format, inexpensive wargames.
In 1996 I put together a simple website that attempted to categorize and
list all the pocket-sized wargames that were my introduction to this hobby
about two decades ago. After languishing for too long, the HQ has undergone
a relocation, update and facelift.
What's a microgame?
It's a pretty general term, but for the purposes of this website, we've given it a specific definition. As far as this website is concerned, a microgame is any inexpensive--no more than $15--wargame or conflict simulation which is generally also small in size and quick-playing.
You're on the right track if this definition gets you thinking of a ziplock bagged game that young kids can afford, can be played in a lunch hour, and fits in the front pocket of a backpack. It's no coincidence that these are the circumstances under which many of us microgame fans originally found them--in the early 80s while still in school. (Although we figure a game would have to cost about half of today's price--no more than $8--to qualify for definition here at Microgame HQ.) This definition isn't perfect, but it works. For some examples, check out the database and mailing list links below.
The purists out there (ok, I'm one of them) would also note that MicroGame was the name for the popular line of small bagged and boxed games released by Metagaming Concepts in the 1970's and 80's. Although they weren't the first small-format wargames to hit the market, the MicroGames coined a lasting name for the format and their popularity convinced other game manufacturers to release similar small-format science fiction and fantasy games.
So join us in saluting the MicroGames, their off-spring, and their forefathers!
What's planned for later:
All company names, game names, artwork, publications and other products are copyrighted, trademarked and/or registered as applicable by their rightful owners.
Webmaster: Joe Scoleri, firstname.lastname@example.org
Special thanks go to website sponsor Joe Hartley (of brainiac.com), and mailing list adminstrator Don Redick (of Fractal Dimensions).