2024 Designing Tactical Games Course

Starts:  Sep 24, 2024 10:00 (ET)
Ends:  Sep 26, 2024 18:00 (ET)
Associated with  MORS Community


The MORS Designing Tactical Games Short Course is a three-day course that focuses on building tactical games. Tactical games deal with maneuver and combat during individual battles. This requires the game designer to manage large numbers of complex variables in ways that allow the players to make the appropriate Warfighting decisions. Whether this is done using computer or manual techniques, it demands no small degree of simulation—the interaction of forces, the effects of human factors and technology, and the effects of the environment on combat. Any good wargame strives to produce realistic adjudications and outcomes, but the realism of tactical games is tested even more stringently because the players can more easily relate game mechanics and adjudication to their own personal experiences. All of this makes designing tactical games different—and even more challenging—than designing operational or strategic games. This class will examine some of these challenges and possible solutions in both theoretical and practical terms.

MORS has partnered with Virginia Tech to offer this certificate. Participants will receive a number Continuing Education Units (CEUs) upon completion, in accordance with the number of contact hours determined by Virginia Tech.

Please note: this course is not intended to be an introduction to wargaming. For an introduction, please refer to our Certificate in Wargaming.



  • Our expert instructors will address tactical games according to the different combat domains: ground, naval, and air. Participants will learn varying aspects of game design and explore future challenges from these perspectives, including but not limited to:
  • Designing exploratory games—that is, games to create or test new tactics, weapon systems, or operational concepts
  • Ground games:
  • How good design must address basic concepts such as mission, time, space, forces, and command relationships
  • How to bring all the variables together to create a realistic tactical environment for players to engage in ground warfare
  • Different ways of representing ground combat based on a wide range of commercial and professional games
  • Air and Naval games:
  • Integration of multi-domain operations (MDO) from space to surface into the overall air-battle kill chain
  • How do build games that focus on air combat operations, and air combat operations in support of ground forces
  • Methods for abstracting and estimating air combat values
  • Putting ordnance on not only the target, but the entire kill chain, from identification to battle damage assessment
  • Additional topics, depending on participant interest
Event Image


Jill Maita