"A House Divided" is a board game
published in 1981 by GDW
and designed by Frank Alan Chadwick
The name comes from the speech A House Divided Against Itself Cannot Stand against slavery. The issue of slavery later led to the American Civil War, which is the topic of the game.
The game is played on a map where cities are connected by roads, railways and rivers. There are few ways to cross the Appalachian Mountains, which forms a barrier between West and East of the map. The South has three ways to win: survive till the end of the game, conquer Washington or control a lot of cities in the North. Control of enemy cities also decreases the enemy troop limit. The North wins by controlling all major cities of the South.
A turn is made up of a number of activations determined by a die roll, and recruitment of new troops. An activation point is spent to give orders to all troops in one location. Troops may be recruited in owned own cities with recruitment potential. This is usually far from the front line.
Infantry and cavalry are the troops that battle. The troops gain experience after a victorious battle and get promoted to veteran(+1 attack) and crack(-1 modifier as defense). Cracks are hard to kill, especially when fortified or in a city with fortifications. It is important to make a veteran every turn, to free up the counter for recruitment. The North can recruit faster.
When the activation die roll is a "6", the North may use its naval dominance to ferry troops to a city in the South.
The game plays fast and is fun, although very rarely battles can take long when waiting for the "1" to get rolled. Occasionally, people will spend a lot of time thinking, but more often a choice between two possible moves is quickly made. Although the North expects to win because it gets more troops, the South can have fun by winning in one of the two quick ways possible, and can tie down the Northern troops by threating to win.