A Game of War is a book by Guy Debord and Alice Becker-Ho that illustrates a game devised by Debord by giving a detailed account of one of their table-top conflicts. It was first published in French as Le Jeu de la Guerre in 1987, but unsold copies were later pulped in 1991, along with other books by Debord, at his insistence when he left his publisher Champ libre. The book was reissued in 2006, with an English translation published by Atlas Press in 2008.
In his 1989 book Panegyric, Guy Debord remarked:
So I have studied the logic of war. Indeed I succeeded long ago in representing its essential movements on a rather simple game-board… I played this game, and in the often difficult conduct of my life drew a few lessons from it — setting rules for my life, and abiding by them. The surprises vouchsafed by this Kriegspiel of mine seem endless; I rather fear it may turn out to be the only one of my works to which people will venture to accord any value. As to whether I have made good use of its lessons, I shall leave that for others to judge.
Apart from the books which contain the game, free online versions of the game are available.
London based group, Class Wargames have reproduced A Game of War and taken it on a campaign around the globe, at Belo Horizonte, pictured above, St. Petersburg and a variety of other locations.
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