U.S. Naval War College (NWC) staff members listen to a brief during a wargame reenactment of the Battle of Jutland at NWC in Newport, Rhode Island.
U.S. Naval War College (NWC) staff members listen to a brief during a wargame reenactment of the Battle of Jutland at NWC in Newport, Rhode Island. The historical World War I naval battle was fought May 31, 1916, between the British Royal navy's Grand Fleet, under British Adm. Sir John Jellicoe, and Imperial German navy's High Seas Fleet, under German Vice Adm. Reinhard Scheer. The battle was later studied in great depth at NWC by Fleet Admirals Chester W. Nimitz, Ernest J. King and William F. Halsey, and helped shape U.S. Navy warships, tactics and doctrine in the years leading up to World War II. During the wargame reenactment, Rear Adm. P. Gardner Howe III, NWC president, commanded the German High Seas Fleet and retired Rear Adm. Samuel J. Cox, director, Naval History and Heritage Command, commanded the British Grand Fleet. (U.S. Navy photo by Chief Mass Communication Specialist James E. Foehl/Released)


Simulating complex war situations—from sea to space to cyber—builds analytical, strategic, and decision-making skills. Wargaming programming not only enriches our curriculum, but it also helps shape defense plans and policies for various commands and agencies.

Simulations at sea—and beyond

Wargaming has been an integral part of Naval War College (NWC) since 1887. While the tools and technology used in simulations have evolved over the past century, the value of wargaming in maritime leadership development remains strong. Today, we conduct more than 50 gaming events per year, and they range in variety from complex, multi-sided computer-assisted games to simple, single-sided seminar games.

Wargaming supports our academic mission in many ways. Games foster an understanding of the decisions that military leaders and civilians make in maritime and joint warfare. Wargaming also opens discussion and debate of strategic and operational concepts. Finally, gaming provides insights and builds important risk assessment and analytical skills.

History of Wargaming at NWC & Captain William McCarty Little

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Wargaming Facilities

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Wargaming Topics, Collaborations, and Partnerships

Wargaming allows students to gain practical experience and a better understanding of the dynamics of warfighting, but simulations are also designed to prepare military leaders for national disasters and humanitarian relief.

Wargaming Topics

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Collaborations and Partnerships

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Wargaming Publications & Journals

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Wargaming Department

In support of Naval War College’s academic mission, the Wargaming Department conducts high-quality applied gaming, research, analysis, and education. Simulating these complex war scenarios builds analytical, decision-making, and risk assessment skills.

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News, Media, & Events

New Student Orientation

Jul. 30-01, 2024
8:00 a.m.
U.S. Naval War College, 686 Cushing Rd, Newport, RI 02841

The Use of Force Overseas: An Analytical Framework

Sep. 10, 2021
Naval Law Review, Volume 39, Page 93
Article Publication