SGS Rules

Opening moves

Carl Nebel - Battle of Buena Vista
Carl Nebel – Battle of Buena Vista


Only the first 5 months of the 1846-48 Grand Campaign, for a duration of 10 turns, each representing 15 days, between April 1846 and August 1846. The war was initiated by US President Polk [a Democrat] on the premise that the southern border of Texas should be he Rio Grande River, while Mexico claimed that the border was on the Nueces River. The Whig party [and many American citizens] opposed the war.

One player represents the United States of America’s land and naval forces, the other has Mexico’s land and Naval forces. The Mexican forces are more numerous at the start of the game, but are poorly led and have lower morale. They also receive only a small number of reinforcements, while the USA receives many Volunteers and regular Army units.

  • The Mexicans must hold desperately against the onslaught and superior morale of their enemy, hoping to gain enough time for America’s internal politics to disrupt and eventually end the war.
  • The USA must advance and eventually conquer Monterrey.

Be careful of the supply lines for the both sides, as early success can outrun your supply!

The games Cards and Events allow full replay ability thanks to the numerous various situations that they create on the environmental, diplomatic, military, political or economic fields.


Flag Icon USADuration: 3h+
Favored Side: USA
Most Difficult Side to Play: Mexico

This short version of the Campaign for ‘Halls of Montezuma’ lasts 10 turns, each representing 15 days, between April 1846 and Augsut 1846. There are objectives on the main map and in the Off Map Boxes [California, New Mexico, Arizona]

Flag Icon MexicoThe USA player always plays first.

The American forces include the US Navy, US Regular Army and State Militia forces.

The Mexican forces include Regular Army units and assorted Militia forces. The Mexican Navy is almost non-existant and consists solely of Blockade Runners.



SGS Halls of Montezuma

The map represents most of Texas, the southern coastline of the US gulf coast, and most of Mexico from the Yucatan peninsula to the the Rio Grande River.

Western US and Mexican regions and some key seas or islands appear on the sides as “Off Map”Boxes”.

Note: Many cities, towns and villages have strong fortress values. These are representing the difficulty of bringing the population there into a pacified state.


The American player wins if he controls all Mexican victory cities in supply.
The Mexican player wins if the Tension Index reaches a preset level .
(A warning message will appear when the Mexican Victory level is approaching).

Otherwise, the player with the most Victory Points at the end of the scenario wins the game.


SGS Structure Icon StarMany regions and structures give VP when captured, and may cause loss of VP if lost.
All of those are shown by the VP stars on map and in the region navigator.
Mexico may gain extra VP at end of the game for holding key locations, usually major cities in Mexico.

The Political Climate in the USA [Tension Index – see next section] increases with US incursions into Mexico and capture of Mexican cities and towns.

The Mexican player gains 1 VP for each US Regular Army Unit destroyed, and the American player also loses 1 VP in these instances.



June 1, 1846
– in one selected region of player’s choice in a list:
1st LA, 1st TX,
1st US, 4th US Artillery, 7th US
– at Great Plains OMB
Clark’s Battalion, Kearney’s Pack Train, Price’s Regiment, 1st Missouri Volunteers, 2nd Missouri Volunteers, Doniphan’s Regiment, Doniphan’s’s Pack Train

June 15, 1846
– at Northern California OMB
John C. Fremont,California Volunteers, Sutters Volunteers, Clark’s Battery, Pacific Sailors,Supply unit

August 1, 1846
1st KY, 1st MD, 1st MS, 1st OH, 1st TN,
GA Cavalry, LA Cavalry,
5th US Artillery, 6th US Artillery,


Mexico has none scheduled.
Reinforcement (and replacement, see next) come only via Card play.


The Mexican 11th and 12th Infantry are immobile until released by Card play.

Each side receives 1 replacement every turn. Additional replacements and constructions are handled by cards.

There are two cards drawn each turn in this game, and players may keep up to 10 of them in hands.

Sources display the supply icon on map.

USA units: New Orleans, Corpus Christie, Brownsville, Vera Cruz, several OMB.
Mexican units: Mexico City, Vera Cruz, Monterrey, Acapulco, Chihuahua, several OMB.

Both sides benefit from a partial fog of war, i.e. the player cannot see what an enemy stack could contain (only a flag is displayed on those).

In this game, no breakthrough are possible.

US POLITICAL CLIMATEAntiwar Sentiment Icon
Also called Tension Index or Antiwar Sentiment, this is a numerical index that varies during the course of the game, mostly with the play of some key political cards and via the capture or loss of important locations.

When the Index value approaches or reaches 20, Mexico wins the game, as domestic politics in the USA heavily favor peace and their will demands in the Congress to end the war via negotiated peace.


For the PDF version, use the links below :

SGS Halls of Montezuma – (PDF) : Grand campaign Mexico 1846Opening moves.
Scenarios : Cauldron of Generals 1847Tejas Return.

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