Therefore, on dispersive ground, I would inspire my men with a unity of purpose. On facile ground, I would see that there is close connection between all parts of my army.

On contentious ground, I would hurry up my rear.

On open ground, I would keep a vigilant eye on my defenses. On ground of intersecting highways, I would consolidate my alliances.

On serious ground, I would try to ensure a continuous stream of supplies. On difficult ground, I would keep pushing on along the road.

On hemmed-in ground, I would block any way of retreat. On desperate ground, I would proclaim to my soldiers the hopelessness of saving their lives. For it is the soldier’s disposition to offer an obstinate resistance when surrounded, to fight hard when he cannot help himself, and to obey promptly when he has fallen into danger.

–Sun Tzu, The Art of War, Chapter XI: The Nine Situations, [46-51].

In the privacy of my own home, I would make sure everybody is having a good time. Any non-wargamers would be informed of our purpose as to why we are there. If they don’t want to play, that’s fine. They can watch so long as they don’t get in the way.

At the favorite local gaming store, if space is at a premium, I would do my best to move the game a long, lest somebody complain.

If wargaming near an entry or an exit in a public of semi-public space, I would keep one eye on my miniatures and other paraphernalia.

If wargaming at a restaurant, I’d make sure food can reach the tabletop—that is, the tabletop within each reach that’s not being used for the game.

If wargaming and a bunch of LARPers arrive on the scene, I’d ignore them until they went away, though I used to sometimes join with them and pretend to be invisible.

On hemmed-in ground or desperate ground of any sort, I’d go against what The Art of War says and leave the area as soon as I could.

Next on The Art of Wargaming:

What Was Your First Wargame?