Alessio Cavatore – A Life in Wargames

Following on from the success of my article on Jervis Johnson. I thought I would continue this into a series with another great games designer, Alessio Cavatore.


Alessio who hails from the City of Turin in Italy moved to the UK in 1995 and joined Games Workshop in the same year as a translator.

A year later and Alessio was made a games developer and was set to work writing several supplements for Warhammer Fantasy Battles before heading up the Lord of the Rings Strategy Game.

2004 was the year that saw Alessio made responsible for all the rules published for Warhammer Fantasy Battles, Warhammer 40k and Lord of the Rings. Two years later and he would write the rules for the 7th edition of Warhammer Fantasy Battles.

As well as writing the rules for Mordheim alongside Rick Priestley and Tuomas Pirinen, Alessio has been involved in games for both Warlord Games and Mantic Games. With Bolt Action (Warlord Games) and Kings of War (Mantic) all receiving input from this talented writer.

In 2010 Alessio founded River Horse Games to allow him to publish his own games and work as a consultant for other publishers such as Para-Bellum, where he worked on Conquest: The Last Argument of Kings.

Out of the 73 games and add-ons that Alessio has worked on to date, that number includes;

  • Mordheim (Games Workshop)
  • Warhammer Fantasy Battles – 7th Edition (Games Workshop)
  • Kings of War (Mantic)
  • Bolt Action (Warlord Games)
  • The Lord of the Rings: Strategy Battle Game (Games Workshop)
  • Conquest: The Last Argument of Kings (Para-Bellum)
  • Warhammer 40,000 5th Edition (Games Workshop)

As a side note, Alessio, Brian Nelson and the Perry Twins all had cameo appearances in The Return of the King film as Rohirrim at the Battle of Pelennor Fields. They can be seen near the Mumakil when Pippin goes searching for Merry after the battle.

Behindtherules.com conducted an excellent interview with Alessio back in 2010, if you would like to learn more about Alessio and his rules writing you can find the 1st part of the interview here.

Like Jervis, the wargames community owes a lot to Alessio for his contribution to the industry and for what he continues to contribute.

I’m also hoping that articles like this will show that many of the rules sets you may dismiss out of hand have often been worked on by a writer you know and love that has worked for Games Workshop at one time or another.

Why don’t you let us know in the comments below which of Alessio’s games is your favourite, and why not suggest someone to focus a future article on.

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