Basic Rules

Character Creation

Name: First Name & Family Name (Last Name), titles, lordships, positions, major family relations, & nicknames.


Level: or LVL, is the Player Character’s rank in English and Welsh feudal society in c.1470. Peasants and lower class gentry have a Level (LVL) of 1-3. Often surviving day to day, they have very little rights or privileges and are never the best soldiers though they are often the first called upon to fight when a campaign or large battle must be initiated. Simple shire-knights, squires, or common soldiers have a Level between 2-4.

A young knight is rated a LVL of 5 after being invested usually at the age of 16-21. A minor noble baron, lord, or knight of the shire with some land holdings and modest wealth/income will rate between a LVL 6 or 7. Great barons and dukes will have a higher LVL ranging from 7 to 9. Kings, royal family members, or direct relations to the royal family may have a maximum LVL of 12 but a more likely rank will be around 9 or 10.

Courage: The Player Character’s charisma, meddle in combat, and overall resolve

Judgement: Ranks the PC or NPC’s intelligence, cunning (artifice), and inter-personal skills. Players with a higher judgment skill are generally intelligent, crafty, and more willing to use their mind first instead of their sword. Judgment is the major non-combat test skill for the PC.

Wealth: Accumulated total properties, incomes, and money possessed by an individual character. Can be used to recruit and pay new soldiers, for bribery of church officials, pay for ransoms, or repairs to castles and fortified manors, and to pay for passage on ships.

Armor Rating: AR, the player characters armor rating is derived primarily from wearing anything from simple leather coats to mail and steel pot helmets, and the best full harness plate armor of the period. A knight or great lord wearing full harness head-to-toe wore the best personal protection offered by the days standards-most crafted by the master blacksmiths and artisans in the Italian and German kingdoms on the European continent.

Armor Ratings

Leather & Cloth Brigandine: 17-21, Armor Rating

Old English breastplate armor & close helm: 22-25 AR

Fine German Plate Armor harness & barbute: 26-28 AR

Master Crafted Italian Plate Armor harness & sallet: 29-31 AR

Health Points: Or HP, the PC takes damage in Personal (single) Combat or during the battle when their Armor Rating is tested against successfully by an attacking enemy character (Mêlée Strike or Ranged Attack).

Derived Stats

Attack Rating: The characters combined offensive stat calculated by adding the character’s Attack Rating and 1 d20 roll in personal combat.

Defense Rating: Or Damage Resistance. The characters combined defensive resistance against mêlée or ranged attacks in single combat.

Melee Strike: An attempt to hit or strike an enemy from up close. How many Attacks, or Melee Strikes a character can make in personal combat is governed by the PC’s LVL (Level or Save Level). Half of the characters LVL rank may be used. For example a_LVL_ 8 character may attempt to strike an enemy opponent (melee or ranged) 4 times in one movement.


45 Turns complete 1 year of game-play. 1 year is comprised of 9 “Medieval Months” which include January, March, May, June, July, August, September, November, & December.

Personal Combat

Personal Combat is a test of arms between two knights or two Player Character’s which may both precede, intercede, or follow battle between two (or more) organized armies. Generally Personal Combat or single combat is fought between two knights or men-at-arms of similar noble ranking though it may also at times many different classes of men and warriors.

In the thick of a melee in a battle or skirmish in War & Roses 1470, a lord or knight might find himself in combat with several different enemies in one engagement. Mêlée tests often may involved. NPC’s who might be encountered in and out of combat may include peasants, townspeople, gentry and artisans turned soldiers, women, clergymen, or foreign diplomats. All of the above are considered Amateur (novice) trained or lightly armed soldiers.

First Phase

Roll for initiative

Each combatant rolls 1 d20 adding the result to their LVL. Whichever PC roles the higher test roll wins Initiative.The winner of Initiative decides whether to attack or to defend first. This is called being the Aggressor or the Defender.

Second Phase

The Melee Attack

When attacking the PC adds 1 d20 roll to their Attack stat (Ex. +10 or +12) adding or subtracting any number of possible modifiers to the Attack test which is compared to the Defenders Armor Rating (Puissance + Armor Rating) plus any additional modifiers and must greater than the sum of the target’s Armor Rating to do any damage.

Wounds are inflicted when the Attack Rating is even with the target’s Defense rating.

A Player Character may attack half the number of his LVL (always rounded down) per movement in Personal Combat. (Ex. A PC with LVL 7 may only attack three times per movement). A PC with LVL 8 or 9 may attack 4 times per movement.

  • d20 rolls of 1 always miss when attacking.

The Defender may make a Counter Attack if the PC or NPC d20 rolls 1 twice when attempting to strike.

Third Phase

PC’s may take damage when their enemies Attack Test (melee strike) successfully tests greater than their Armor rating.

Inflicting Damage & Wounds

  • Generally a successful melee attack made by the PC inflicts
    1 point of (HP) damage upon the target.

Wounds are inflicted in Personal Combat when the PC’s Attack rating is equal to the defenders damage resistance test (DR, Armor Rating)

In the Fourth Phase of Personal Combat the Defender may launch his melee attacks against the Aggressor using the same format described above in Phases II-III. They may also choose not to engage their enemy and flee combat by rolling 21 for a Personal Retreat(1 d20 roll + the characters Save LVL).

If as a Defender you fail a Personal Retreat test then you loose -1 LVL and -1 Courage for the turn and any immediate enemy units may make one immediate attack.

Common Non-Combat Test Rolls

LVL (Save LVL)



Common Combat and Warfare Test Rolls


Nerve (Judgement + Courage)

Basic Rules

War and Roses 1470: The Kingmaker Mr_Foolkiller Mr_Foolkiller