There was art school, a long career in the design industry, while all the time painting and tinkering with rules. But Fistful of Lead was really born of a bad wargaming convention experience. I went to my first convention in my early 20s at a local Union hall. There, a gentleman was running a truly large Wild West game. Until then, I had only played fantasy games with a few WW2 games mixed in. This was new!
When I saw the rules weren’t commercially available, I tried to ask the host about the game, especially his take on writing your own.
His rudeness cannot be properly put into words. Suffice to say, I decided then and there to write my own Wild West rules.
Fistful of Lead was born.
After years of playing it with my local gaming group, they talked me into publishing them in 2001. It had a small but loyal following. Last year, after more encouragement and prodding from the Fistful of Lead Yahoo Group, I created a bigger version, complete with a campaign system and scenarios. We ran this as a Kickstarter in 2016 to cover the cost of printing and adding custom cards and miniatures. It was a success.
There are no shortages of Wild West wargaming rules out there. But they don’t fit my own philosophy. Wargaming, for the most part, is a communal activity. It’s a chance to hang out with your friends, “push some lead around”, and most importantly, have fun.
I try to write rules that are easy to learn, don’t involve a lot of record keeping, have a Hollywood flair to them, and create lots of moments to laugh and talk about later around your favorite beverage.
The Fistful of Lead card driven game system allows for tense moments of decision where everyone is involved. They are great for beginners and battle hardened Grognards alike.
It is a perfect gateway system. Fistful of Lead doesn’t require a lot of miniatures to play. For a 1-on- 1 game, each player only needs 5-6 miniatures. This means you can try a new genre without a huge monetary investment. But it’s also scalable, where 6-8 players can easily play without slowing down the game too much.
Wiley Games is a small operation now, just my wife and I. I design, she runs the
The plan is to keep growing. We introduced a Horse & Musket version of Fistful of Lead so you can fight the small skirmish actions that took place during the 18th and early 19th century. We created a SciFi version, Galactic Heroes, and finally a NEW Core set that led to our first supplement: Tales of Horror. We hope to release a constant stream of supplements, scenario books and quality terrain bits.
Wiley Games is a family owned, independent company, providing rules & accessories for miniature-agnostic tabletop wargaming.
The Fistful of Lead System is:
- Miniature Agnostic
- D10 Game
- Simple to Learn
- Easy to Customize
- Infinitely Replayable
We have 17 titles of various genres. Most of our titles are skirmish level. Rules are easy to learn. The quick-draw card-driven mechanics give players a Hollywood flair, creating the great gaming moments that we all love. The ability to add traits makes the rules endlessly playable.
We welcome new customers every day who have played the popular rules. They have become bored.
Wargamers come to Wiley Games, for a haven of fun gaming, and their miniatures are happy.
Play Wiley Games. Your miniatures will thank you.