Nuclear Renaissance is a tabletop miniature wargame produced by Ramshackle Games. It is set in a science fiction, Post-apocalypse Earth setting. It was created by Gil Harrison and Curtis Fell in 2005. The game is a “sandbox” structure where players build gangs to fight in the wastes.

A World in Ruin

In the not too distant future, the once sprawling metropolises of man are now nothing but dust. Wars, over-consumption and the wanton destruction of his own environment has left the earth as a barren rock. Across these trackless wastes, gang fights gang for the possession of scant resources, food and bitter glory. Move fast, stay in cover and watch your back. Outside of your gang is a short life of hardship and starvation followed by a quick, pitiful death.

Why play Nuclear Renaissance?

When building your gang and playing there is  a high degree of freedom. Using the simple design rules, players can build any gang they can imagine.  They can start out with anything from one super, uber hero tooled to the nines to a swarm of  50 goons! Add in all the transport, bikes, rail cannons and hundreds of skills and abilities and its mayhem all round!

Nuclear Renaissance is great for group play too, it is a very inclusive and straight forward game. Its easy to pick up and easy to play. 2 player games take about an hour to play and 5 or 6 player games will only take 2 or 3 hours to finish.

A great deal of research has gone into trying to make the system as realistic as possible without bogging down in mechanics. In the end, it plays rapidly and gives players plenty of scope for awesome clashes. The game stresses combat and vehicles over fire power. Guns in the future wasteland are difficult to maintain and costly. Better to clart a goon on the noggin or run him over with your giant armored truck!

Build your gang your way.

Nuclear Renaissance is a multi tabletop skirmish game. The rules are for skirmish campaigns in a post apocalyptic wasteland. Players collect a gang of hardened fighters and souped up vehicles from the customisable range of parts and characters. The rules in the book let players choose any gang they can imagine. Vehicles are fully integrated into the game, making for a simple system that lets players play as they like.

Nuclear Renaissance a multiplayer game, so 3 or 4 player games work well in the system as well as the standard 2 player setup. Each player then pits their wits against friend and foe alike in a bid to win the coveted prize, to be the last gang standing. Nuclear Renaissance is a great game for group play as the whole group can join in the same battle!


Wars, over-consumption and the wanton destruction of the environment has left the earth as a barren rock. Yet still on a rock may not lichen thrive? From the ashes grows a new world“.

Nuclear bombs, biological agents, and poisons have scoured the Earth’s surface leaving only a handful of humans alive. A nuclear winter has occurred devastating the biodiversity of the planet, leaving the remaining humans to scavenge and battle for what limited resources were left. The radiation has deformed and mutated many humans, so they appear in a wide range of sizes. Makeshift vehicles cobbled together from old wrecks form an important part of the survival of the marauding bands that roam the scorched earth. Yet even now, plants fins a place to grow, animals adapt. Humanity works its tireless way upon the road of progress. Is it too late or can that final turn be made?

Building Gangs

Players have have 650 points to construct a gang and equip them with weapons, skills, and vehicles. Players pick their characters and vehicles as they like.

Each character a player buys is classed as Hero, Soldier, or Goon in descending order of cost and ability. Then they give their characters skill and equipment from a large set available. These add simple modifiers to the statistics and skills of the characters, which add up to bonuses in game. Players can choose their models as they like, with no restrictions.  Thus, a gang may consist of 2 or 3 highly valued members or 20 expendable ones.

Vehicles are similar to characters, so players buy Bikes, Buggies or Trucks. These are then bought upgrades, making them tougher, faster or giving better handling or ram potential. Again, players are free to design their own vehicles as they choose, only limited by the points available.

Game Mechanics

Nuclear Renaissance uses a “You go; I go” structure.  In a turn each player activates one figure then play passes to the next player. When all players have activated all figures the turn ends and a new turn begins.

Each character has a set amount of Action Points that they can use to move, shoot, aim and other actions. When all Action Points are used up, that character’s turn is over and the next player activates a character.

10-sided dice (D10) are used. When making actions, players roll 1 or more D10. Combat, shooting and other attacks are resolved by both players rolling their dice and adding the relevant  modifier to the dice roll. The player who scores highest wins the roll-off. The amount they win by dictates how well their action  succeeds.

Figures are activated in order of Aptitude, so a hero with high aptitude will always move before a goon with low aptitude on the same team. The hero may skip his turn and go later in the sequence, if so then the opposing player gets to activate their next figure.

Character Statistics

Each character has 7 statistics

  • Aptitude – Dictates general ability of character and order of play
  • Combat – Shows relative close-quarters combat ability
  • Ranged – Shows ranged weapon ability
  • Dodge – Shows ability to avoid ranged attacks
  • Dodge Dice – Number of dice player rolls when dodging
  • Action Points – How many different actions a character can make in a turn
  • Points – Overall value/cost of character


“During the hurly-burly of a battle, unexpected events, injuries and close calls can all spook a fighter.”

A unique aspect of Nuclear Renaissance is Shock. A model is penalised with shock tokens when it takes any non-lethal hit, or from other factors such as a weapons jam. Shock tokens accumulate and each one reduces the core statistics of the character. They can be removed by expending action points during the game.

Characters with the bard skill can help remove shock tokens too. Bards are a great fun part of the game, and gangs based around a rock legend can be very powerful. Bards motivate their comrades and keep them fighting.

Where can I get NucRen?

The core rules for Nuclear Renaissance can be downloaded for free! Please visit our Downloads Page. There you can also find gang sheets to print out.

There is also an expansion for NucRen called The Tome of Tridlins. This add much more to the game, including extra character types including mutants, zombies and beasts! It also includes full rules for playing campaigns and advancing your gang. You can see a sample of the book which gives the full rules for using mutants in your NucRen games by visiting the downloads page, linked above.

Visit the Ramshackle Games web store to see which exciting games are available in a variety of formats!


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