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Elan Deluxe: Free Rules for
Gaming the Napoleonic Wars

Élan Deluxe is the latest and final evolution of these tactical-level Napoleonic wargame rules designed for 15-25 mm miniatures.

The rules are now available as a free PDF file here.

Developed in Australia by Phillip A. Jones, these rules are the result of over five year’s development and play testing, and are based on three previously released commercial versions. Élan Deluxe is based on Élan 3 plus amendments released in early 2004- Élan 3 plus. It also incorporates suggestions from players from the past 18 months and the text has undergone a complete overview for increased simplicity, playability and clarity. Many new rules and refinements have been added.

The Deluxe version also includes campaign rules Etat-Major, new optional rules, and also included in the rules are extensive unit ratings for over twenty nations and over 40 Army lists for every nation that took part in the conflict including multiple theatres. 

Élan is a flowing game that accurately reflects historical tactics. Players are placed "on the table" and granted wide historical latitude to control their units.

The rules sequence features both simultaneous and alternate actions, resulting in an intuitive and balanced game that captures the feel of the period strongly.  Individual units represented are the battalion and regiment and players can do sub-unit actions such as company and squadron actions. Players can use any basing system and the default scale is 1:50, but players can use any ratio such as 1:20 or 1:60.

It is a game that replicates the tactics of the period and enables gamers to play the period and not get bogged down in complex rules! The game can also be adapted for other Horse and Musket periods from the SYW to the Crimea War.

The game will appeal to players who enjoy tactical nuance and want a game that grows with them in subtlety and tactical complexity.  Élan is written in a clear, concise style. The rules are well indexed, logically laid out and easy to comprehend.  The PDF file also has bookmarks for ease of navigation and players can print out just the sections that interest them.

The rules are now available for free download courtesy of the author and this web site

There is also a Yahoo group called Élan Deluxe for players where they can ask questions, seek rules clarifications, and share tips, scenarios, etc. with fellow Élan gamers. Anyone may join, although to avoid spamming, all members must be approved by the group moderator. At this time it is moderated by Mark Severin, owner of

The Élan Deluxe Rules now include, in a single downloadable file, complete Army lists for all the armies involved in the vast Napoleonic Wars as well as a campaign system called Etat Major. It is an Adobe Acrobat file. You will need the Adobe Acrobat Reader (a free download  - get it here for Windows, here for Mac) to use this file.

To download the file, RIGHT click the link and choose “Save Target As”

The Élan Rules & Army Lists (1.5 MB)


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