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Nominated for the 2020 Late Gunpowder Era Charles S. Roberts Award

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"If you enjoy colonial era war games, this is as good as it gets." - Ladywargamer


  • 16 Game Turns each representing approximately 7 – 10 days

  • A Game Map depicting the varied terrain of the Punjab

  • An innovative mechanism to simulate the “fog of war”

  • Alternating Activation of Movement and Combat to give the feel of simultaneous action

  • Full-strength and Weakened combat units to reflect losses 

  • The crucial importance for both sides of maintaining their lines of supply

  • British capability of moving men and materiel by river 

  • A region in turmoil with uncertainty as to which area will be next to rise up against the British

  • The possibility of Afghans and Kashmiris joining the conflict

  • Optional Rules reflecting the strengths and weaknesses of the principal commanders

Following the British victory in the First Anglo-Sikh War (1845 – 1846), the Sikh Government of the Punjab (the Lahore Durbar) effectively came under the control of the British East India Company. In April 1848, two British officers were sent to the prosperous south western city of Multan to take over the running of the province from its governor, Diwan Mulraj Chopra. They were murdered by soldiers of the city’s garrison, apparently acting spontaneously and without the prior knowledge of the startled Mulraj. Nonetheless, after some prevarication, he supported their actions, and thereby found himself the leader of a rebellion against the British.

     There were few Sikhs in that part of the Punjab: the garrison was mainly Muslim, and the Mulraj was a Hindu. Because of this, the East India Company regarded the uprising as a purely local affair and sent troops to lay siege to Multan in the expectation that this would quell the rebellion. These included a large body of Sikhs, supposedly loyal to the British, under the command of Sher Singh.

     It is now late October 1848. Coming to sympathize with the Mulraj’s grievances against the British and to appreciate how these are shared by the Sikhs, Sher Singh has changed sides.   His men have withdrawn from the siege and are marching north east towards the Punjabi capital, Lahore. Sher Singh’s father, Chattar Singh, has also rebelled against the British and is besieging the fort at Attock which guards the road to Afghanistan. Inspired by the defiance of Sher Singh and Chattar Singh, anti-British disturbances have broken out in towns and cities across the western Punjab.

     In response, units of the British East India Company are assembling at Firozpur where they will become the “Army of the Punjab”, under the command of Lord Gough. Gough plans to march against Sher Singh before he is reinforced by Chattar Singh. The monsoon season has ended. Campaigning can commence. So begins the Second Anglo-Sikh War 1848 – 1849.

                                         .   .   .


 Into the Lion’s Mouth is a two-player beer-and-pretzels game by designer Steve Pole which gives players the opportunity to replicate the British success in re-establishing control over the Punjab, or to re-write history by leading the Sikhs to victory. 

To order INTO THE LION'S MOUTH use the drop-down menu below. The game comes in three formats. Formats are boxed, folio (plastic bag), and print-and-play (PnP). PnP is sent to you by email. Boxed and folio are printed and shipped by mail to your PayPal address. Select the format and shipping destination then click Add to Cart. Payment will be by PayPal. The price shown includes shipping and handling. If the game has a Vassal module available, it will be sent by email upon request. For international orders, please allow ten days for arrival of your order.

"We have enjoyed it very much and my 9- and 14-year-old children have also appreciated the game." - Harpeet S.

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  •  One 17” x 21” Hexagonal Game Map

  • 16 Field Army Counters

  • Two Field Army Detail Sheets

  • Two Tactical Detail Sheets

  • 90 Field Army Detail Markers

  • 34 Depot/Garrison Counters

  • 12 Commander Counters

  • Nine Activated Markers

  • Five Local Uprising Markers

  • Three River Crossing Counters

  • Six Combat Markers

  • One Game Turn Marker

  • 4-Page Extended Example of Play

  • 16-Page Rules Book

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"The game is an outstanding one in terms of game play and historical inquiry. Hopefully other lessor known age of rifles campaigns will be created using this design." - Molly

"My note is simply to thank you and your team who created such a great game and featured a very important aspect of our history in it. May you continue to make great games in the future!" - Vishaal S.

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