Conflict simulation, peacebuilding, and development


In October/November 2021, PAXsims reached out to over 35 internationally-regarded wargamers seeking their suggestions for their “top ten” readings for both new and experienced wargamers (and other serious gamers).  More than 110 suggestions were collected, and below we are pleased to present a list of those that were suggested at least twice. Links are provided to those available online for free.

If you weren’t asked or your publication wasn’t included, don’t worry—we will try to update the list each year.

  • Appleget, Jeff; Burks, Robert; and Cameron, Fred. The Craft of Wargaming: A Detailed Planning Guide for Defense Planners and Analysts (Naval Institute Press, 2020). *
  • Burns, Shawn, ed. War Gamers’ Handbook: A Guide for Professional War Gamers (US Naval War College, 2015).
  • Caffrey, Matt. On Wargaming (US Naval War College Press, 2019).
  • Curry, John. Matrix Games for Modern Wargaming (History of Wargaming Project, 2014).
  • Curry, John; and Young, Michael. The Confrontation Analysis Handbook: How to Resolve Confrontations by Eliminating Dilemmas (History of Wargaming Project, 2017).
  • Downes-Martin, Stephen. “Your Boss, Players, and Sponsor – The Three Witches of War Gaming.” Naval War College Review 67, 1 (Winter 2014).
  • Engelstein, Geoffrey and Shalev, Isaac. Building Blocks of Tabletop Games Design: An Encyclopedia of Mechanisms (CRC Press, 2019). *
  • Gill, Natasha. Inside the Box: Using Integrative Simulations to Teach Conflict, Negotiation, and Mediation (Centre for Security Studies, ETH Zurich, 2015). *
  • Green, Kesten. “Forecasting Decisions in Conflict Situations: A Comparison of Game Theory, Role-Playing, and Unaided Judgement,” International Journal of Forecasting 18, 3 (2002).
  • Green, Kesten and Armstrong, Scott. “Role Thinking: Standing in Other People’s Shoes to Forecast Decisions in Conflicts.,” International Journal of Forecasting 27, 1 (2011).
  • Harrigan, Pat and Kirschenbaum, Matthew, eds. Zones of Control: Perspectives on Wargaming. (MIT Press, 2016).
  • Koster, Raph. A Theory of Fun for Game Design, 2nd ed. (O’Reilly Media, 2013). *
  • Levine, Robert; Schelling, Thomas; and Jones, William. Crisis Games 27 Years Later: Plus c’est Déjà Vu. RAND Corporation Report P-7719 (1991).
  • Longley-Brown, Graham. Successful Professional Wargames: A Practitioners Handbook (History of Wargaming Project, 2019). *
  • McGrady, ED and Perla, Peter. “Why Wargaming Works,” Naval War College Review 64, 3 (2011). *
  • Perla, Peter. The Art of Wargaming (United States Naval Institute, 1990). *
  • Sabin, Philip. Simulating War: Studying Conflict Through Simulation Games (Bloomsbury Academic, 2014). *
  • Salen, Katie and Zimmerman, Eric. Rules of Play: Game Design Fundamentals (MIT Press, 2003).
  • UK Ministry of Defence, Wargaming Handbook (Development, Concepts, and Doctrine Centre, 2017). *

5 responses to “Bibliography

  1. Brant 05/01/2022 at 4:13 pm

    this was a few years ago, but we spent a whole podcast episode on the “essential wargaming library”

  2. Rex Brynen 30/12/2021 at 11:52 am

    The old list is no longer available. It was becoming outdated, and too difficult to keep current.

  3. Heraldo Makrakis 30/12/2021 at 8:11 am

    Where can I find the complete list? The one with the entire bibliography (110 citations)? The last one I have is from 2017

  4. Rex Brynen 07/09/2021 at 3:06 pm

    Thanks for passing those on. The bibliography hasn’t been updated in quite a while–there’s simply too much being published–so we will probably revise the way we do it in the near future.

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