"Tomb for an Empire" simulates the conflict that took place in the Iberian Peninsula from 1808 to 1814. It was a complex war that involved diverse interests and troops from many nations. Great Britain sent her troops to defend Portugal, within the context of the European Coalitions against France. In Spain proper the war, which presented certain aspects of a civil war, saw an uneasy alliance of reformists and traditionalists under the name of "Patriots" facing the puppet King Jose I Bonaparte and the occupation army; composed mainly of French but also of Italians, Neapolitans, Poles, Germans, Swiss, Dutch and even Spaniards (known as "Juramentados").
Spaniards, British and Portuguese form the Allied side while France and her allies and satellites form the Imperial side. A player (or team) control each side. The game allows to play the war beginning on July 1808 to April 1814, or on several later dates - November 1808, May 1809, January 1810, January 1811 or February 1812. It is also possible to play only certain parts (e.g. The War in Levante 1809 - 1813), individual campaigns (Napoleon's 1809) or just battles (Salamanca, Vitoria ...)
Each game contains:
- 2 70x50 cm maps (form a 70x100 cm map of the Iberian Peninsula)
- 8 battlefield terrain overlays
- 2 sets of Player Aid Sheets (3 sheets per set)
- 3 HQ Display Sheets
- 2 ten sided dice
- 1 set of Army Sheets
- 1264 counters (6 counter sheets)
- 1 Age of Muskets Series Rules" booklet
- 1 "Tomb for an Empire" booklet including special rules, scenarios, historical notes and designer notes.
"Tomb for an Empire" is not just a game it's a whole gaming experience that includes 6 introductory battle scenarios and 18 campaign scenarios of increasing complexity, from Bailen (lasting less than one full turn) to the full campaign starting any year of the war (scenarios 14 to 18).